February 9, 2019
Dear Members and Friends of St. Paul’s,
I am very sad as I write this letter to you. I have decided to retire as the Rector of the Church of St. Paul in the Desert after more than 30 years of ministry with you.
As many of you know already, I have been diagnosed with MS since August of 2011. While the disease has progressed slowly, the symptoms which accompany it continue to increase. As a result, I believe that I can no longer effectively carry out the ministry entrusted to me many years ago. I can no longer lead the mission we share: to proclaim and live out the abundant life of Jesus Christ in service to the community and in joyful worship.
You cannot imagine the joy Susan and I have felt over the years as a part of this faithful community. I often joke with friends that I am still waiting for the honeymoon to end.
Our time together has been punctuated by delightful baptisms, by joyful weddings, and by holy burials. All aspects of our life together have been bound up in prayer and many of the transitions, illnesses, and celebrations of our private lives have been publicly lifted up to God in our weekly worship.
I have chosen April 7th as my final Sunday here and will return symbols of my ministry – the keys to the Church, a bible for my preaching, oil for annointing the sick and, all the passwords for digital ministry. I look forward to sharing laughter and tears with many of you as that day approaches. Susan and I will then close the door on this very glorious 30 years of life and ministry with the people of St. Paul’s.
Your Vestry, led by Peter DiCarlo, will be supported by Diocesan Staff, by Bp. Katharine, and soon, by our Bp. Elect, the Rev. Susan Brown Snook. Our excellent staff – Nathan Ensign, Kathy Guidry, Sharon Pick, Orin Ellingson, Jerry DiNoto, Hector Jimenez, and Ramiro Nava (Camilo) – will continue their service as the parish discerns the next steps in your vision for ministry.
Susan and I will rejoice in your prayers and offer ours for the Parish and for the people of St. Paul’s.
February 9, 2019
Dear Friends in Christ,
As you know, Fr. Andrew has announced his retirement from St. Paul’s as our Rector, effective April 7, 2019. We have been blessed to have him as our shepherd for a remarkable 30 years, and we wish him and Deacon Susan all the best in the next chapter of their lives.
After Fr. Andrew’s departure, the Sr. Warden and the Vestry will oversee the administrative affairs of the Parish and will work with the Diocese to appoint an Interim Rector, pending the eventual selection of a new Rector. Our spiritual needs will also be supported by several of our fine assisting clergy during this period.
The process for the calling of a new Rector will require the Vestry’s establishment of a Search Committee that will prepare a profile of the Parish and conduct much of the work of a Rector search. This profile is a crucial document that will be used to seek out Rector candidates whom we hope will be appropriate to fulfill our spiritual and leadership needs and lead us into our future. After the profile has been approved by the Vestry and Diocese, it will be posted through the Office of Transition Ministry of the Episcopal Church. Our Search Committee will review applications, and evaluate candidates based on a combination of written interview questions as well as phone, video and in-person interviews. After discerning who the best candidates are, the Search Committee will submit a list of the most qualified applicants to the Vestry for its consideration. Appropriate background checks will be conducted and the Bishop’s approval obtained (as happens for all Episcopal churches in transition). From that list our Vestry will discern who our next Rector will be.
Determining who our new Rector will be will take time, and the Vestry will need the spiritual support and participation of the congregation for a successful outcome. We ask for your prayers and God’s help as we move forward in this journey together.
Peter Di Carlo