Dear Friends in Christ: Ellie and I are profoundly appreciative of the joyful, abundant, and warm welcome to GSL. From handwritten and email acknowledgements before our arrival to surprise bags of household goods for our Midtown apartment home to the breakfast, reception, and well-attended celebrations of the Holy Eucharist on July 29, we have been blessed. Without a doubt, we are glad to be here and hope to become better acquainted through the Storytelling Socials (meet-and-greet events) soon to be announced for August-September.
Since my first day in the office, July 25, it has been a privilege to connect with each member of the Executive Committee on behalf of the Vestry and to become more acquainted with the very talented Clergy-Staff Team, as we are called to pay attention to the abundance and overall stewardship (time, talents, treasures) of the people and life at GSL. (August 21 marks my first Vestry meeting.) Within the first couple of weeks of August, I will spend time familiarizing with pastoral care administration, mainly reaching out to parishioners who physically are unable to attend parish offerings. Currently, plans are underway to set the schedule of Fall 2018 Christian formation (education) offerings for adults, youth, and children and a myriad of programs and events to deepen our journeys into Christ and foster community. My orientation of GSL School continues to go well as we prepare for the first day and all-school chapel on August 14. These first few weeks present many opportunities for me to learn much and settle in before the GSL Parish-Rector Celebration of a New Ministry on Wednesday, August 22, 6:00 p.m. at GSL.
Daily, I give thanks for the gift of life, God’s new day, remembering that Christians at GSL and throughout the world are called to participate in the dream of God: followers of Jesus to do what they are able to reconcile and bring peace to a hurting, broken, dark, and complicated world. I offer that daily prayer, serving others, and celebrations of the Holy Eucharist provide us with sustenance for common ministry to which we are called in baptism. Through life at GSL, may we seek to foster and maintain a sacred place for helping all people with “finding God in the heart of Midtown.”
Thanks be to God who has called us together. Blessings and peace as we try,
The Rev. Ollie V. Rencher, Rector
(aka Father Ollie, Father Rencher, Reverend Ollie, Reverend Rencher, Mr. Rencher)
Office Direct 901-952-6320
orencher [at] gracestlukes [dot] org