At the Annual Meeting of the congregation in January of 2015, upon recommendation of the Session, you voted to offer me the gift of a second sabbatical from my regular duties at Southminster Presbyterian Church. Here is the language that was written into my terms of call at that meeting:
After an additional seven years of service since his previous
sabbatical, the pastor will be eligible to take a three month personal
development leave (sabbatical) for the purpose of more concentrated
or comprehensive study than the two week annual study leave affords.
The sabbatical will be arranged by mutual agreement of the pastor and
the session for a time of least disruption in the life of the church. During
the sabbatical calendar year, the annual study leave will be waived.
Regular vacation time, however, will remain intact.
At the February Session meeting, the Session approved my request to take this sabbatical beginning on April 2, 2018. I will return to my regular duties on Thursday, July 5, 2018. The Personnel Committee is exploring ways to provide Pastor Karen with some additional support during my time away. Further word about that will be coming as we are able to make specific plans. Thank you very much for this gift of time to rest and engage in more concentrated study and reflection on our ministry and my role as pastor.
As the terms of call indicate, I will be engaging in some concentrated reading and reflection in two main areas during the sabbatical time frame.
Liturgy and Worship
My plan is to explore ideas related to preaching, liturgical planning, and worship by reading three challenging texts:
An Introduction to Visual Culture – Nicholas Mirzioeff
Good Taste. Bad Taste, and Christian Taste: Aesthetics in
Religious Life – Frank Burch Brown
Sacramental Poetics at the Dawn of Secularism – Regina Schwartz
I am also going to utilize a book by Marcia McFee
Think like a Filmmaker: Sensory Rich Worship Design
Church Dynamics and Congregational Transformation
I am still developing a reading list for this area. It will also include time to try to get better at new technologies – the use of video as well as new marketing software. I also plan to continue to explore new ideas in the area of the ministry of stewardship.
Thank you for this time away from regular pastoral duty. I look forward to returning refreshed and with new ideas for my leadership in our common ministry.
Grace and Peace