July 27, 2014
The Seventh Sunday after Pentecost
Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ,
It is time for me to leave St. Matthew’s. We have had a fruitful season together, and I have enjoyed our shared experiences in ministry. I hope you have as well.
Since I announced my timetable for departure, some of you have commented that, while you look forward to the arrival of your new Rector, you will miss me. I have appreciated those sentiments, and I feel the same way. Yet we know that change can spur us to growth, and growth can move us forward, so we can become more of who God intends for us to be. The skills that led me to be trained in Transition (“Interim”) Ministry have served us well during our time together, but they are not what you need for the next chapter of your journey as a parish.
I want to share a couple of thoughts on healthy boundaries we’ll need to observe, for the sake of St. Matthew’s and your relationship with your new Rector.
1) When I am no longer your interim rector, it will not be appropriate for me to officiate at weddings, baptisms, funerals, or other special St. Matthew’s liturgies. That will be the privilege of your associate Rector, the Rev. Emily Crouch, and your new Rector, the Rev. Kelly Kirby, who will join you in worship on September 7th.
2) We will not stop caring about each other when we part, but things will be different. Directing our energy toward new work and life means letting go of the regular contact (phone, e-mail, etc.) with each other we have enjoyed. You will be busy envisioning new possibilities and moving in new directions with your new rector. I will focus on living into my retirement and seeing what else God has in mind for me. Nonetheless, let’s pray for one another.
In closing, let me share the words of a Jeremiah Rankin hymn:
God be with you till we meet again; when life’s perils thick confound you, put strong arms unfailing ’round you.God be with you till we meet again.
Faithfully in Christ,
The Rev. Thomas A. Momberg
Your Rector in the Interim