Page 5 - 2016 Annual Report
P. 5

Bless we pray thee, O Father this united endeavor of
                                                                  our parish. Teach us to build to Thy glory and in Thy
                                                                  honor. The sacrifi ce is ever before us. Let us not fail to
                                                                  do our very best for Thee.  — The Rev. Tom Sumners,
                                                                  blessing of the Church building campaign, 1951

                                                                  God’s desire is that all people would know the saving grace
                                                                  of Jesus Christ and be empowered to live lives of great faith-
                                                                  fulness. He wants that for us and then he wants to share that
                                                                  with others through us.

                                                                  St. John the Divine has been making that happen for over
                                                                  77 years. God used the faithfulness of our founders to share
                                                                  his grace with tens of thousands of people. Those who have
                                                                  come before us sacrifi ced to grow his kingdom. That is the
                                                                  legacy we’ve been given.
                                                                  Now, it’s our turn. Today, in 2017, we have our chance to
                                                                  build on that legacy. There is still more God is calling us to
                                                                  do. In 2015 we began to Imagine what that future might
                                                                  look like. What emerged was a sense that God is calling us
                                                                  to focus on three purposes – transforming lives, equipping
                                                                  people and mobilizing everyone. These aren’t new. We’ve
                                                                  been doing that, but there are new ways for us to grow our
                                                                  impact and ensure that St. John the Divine continues to be a
                                                                  strong, vibrant parish for the next generation.
                                                                  These purposes give us a sort of high level snapshot of what
                                                                  the future looks like. If it was a building project we’d have
                                                                  before us an architect’s rendering – beautifully drawn, but
                                                                  with very few details. It’s a glimpse of what could be if we
                                                                  were to take the next step.
                                                                  That next step is to translate those purposes into specifi c
                                                                  plans, structures, systems, and budgets. For this to be more
                                                                  than a dream we need to defi ne concrete actions and time-
                                                                  lines to guide our e ort. We need “construction drawings”
                                                                  if we are ever going to build.

                                                                  Over these next three months we will be translating God’s
                                                                  call into specifi c plans. We’ve brought on expertise to help
                                                                  us generate the “construction drawings” that will allow us
                                                                  to build stronger ministries. This approach will allow the
                                                                  sta  to stay focused on ministry to the people God has
                                                                  given us today while our consultants help us clarify how to
                                                                  move forward into tomorrow.

                                                                  Please do join us as we lift this parish in prayer and as we
                                                                  seek to pursue God’s “best” for this amazing church.


                                                                  The Rev. Dr. Clay A. Lein, Rector

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