I cannot tell you how honored I am to have been called as Rector of Saint Theodore’s. Norah, Ivee and I have survived the move and the rush of the first few weeks of being here with you, including Shrove Tuesday, Ash Wednesday, and the first two weeks of Lent. Time flies when you’re having fun! As most of you know we have been commuting from Fayetteville since we arrived. That soon will be reconciled as we are set to close on our new home in Bella Vista at the end of February. To say we are looking forward to it and are excited is an immense understatement.
You may have noticed, as I have, the excitement in the air around St. Theodore’s. After meeting with quite a few of you I am convinced that we are approaching the time to have more and more conversation about new ministries, reviving some old traditions, and looking at different paths of visioning for the future.
It is my hope that over the next few weeks and months we will put together several committees to help with all of these. With the vestry’s support we will assemble a Liturgy Committee, Youth and Family Ministries committee(s), revive the Hospitality Committee, and gather together the outreach efforts to see how we are meeting the needs of those we serve.
Not only that, but the Vestry will hold a Vestry retreat that will mainly focus on this year’s budget and begin to address how each of us can continue to support the ministries and day to day operation of our community. This said, I would like to remind you that it is never too late to increase your existing pledge, make a new pledge, make a pledge to the Capital Fund Drive to retire the mortgage, or simply make an additional gift to St. Theodore’s.
As we make our way through Lent on the road to Jerusalem I pray that you are able to take time and reflect on your relationship with our Creator and Redeemer. Make some time to nourish your soul and spirit whether through meditation, service, prayer, or some other way. Recall whose you are and to whom you belong as a member of the Body of Christ. Come and worship with us and join this wonderful community of God in praising God’s name. Come and be refreshed and renewed by a penitent heart and reconciliation to God. And then, GO! Go and spread the light of Christ into the world.
Soon we will arrive at the Cross with Jesus. We will witness his Passion, Death, and Glorious Resurrection. I encourage you to be apart of the FULL meaning of Easter. Please come and experience our version of the Triduum: Maundy Thursday Eucharist, the Good Friday Liturgy and Stations of the Cross, and then, of course, services on Easter Day. In these liturgies we experience the divine mystery in a holy way; we die, and live, and reign with Christ.
It is my sincere hope that you have a blessed and holy Lent and find new life in the glory of the risen Christ at Easter.
May the mercy and love of the triune God be upon you always!