As you are aware, the Rev. Charlie Holt was elected bishop coadjutor of the Diocese of Florida this past May 14. Obviously, this represents a significant new ministry for Charlie, Brooke, and the entire Holt family. Charlie will be a strong and faithful bishop for that diocese and the larger church. I know we all feel a sense of holy satisfaction that one of our own has been chosen for this office. So, we celebrate this exciting development and congratulate Charlie.
At the same time, it is sad to be losing Charlie to our staff and the Holt family to our parish. Their leave-taking will create a large hole in our life together as a church family. I personally will miss Charlie’s ministerial presence and leadership very much. He is easily one of the most gifted priests and communicators of the gospel I have had the privilege of working alongside in my ordained career.
The Holts' last Sunday with us will be July 3. Charlie will preach at the morning services in the chapel and the church that day, and we will honor the Holts at a reception in Sumners Hall at 10:10 am. I encourage your presence.
In that same regard, it is customary in Episcopal Churches to offer members the opportunity to contribute to a financial gift or purse for departing clergy. Such gifts are a generous and tangible expression of our gratitude, and I hope you will consider a donation. You may make your offering in care of St. John the Divine and earmarked “Charlie Holt Purse” or online here. We are grateful in advance for your consideration and timely response. This gift will be presented on July 3.
Occasional clergy transitions are a part of our life in larger corporate parishes such as SJD. Looking to the future, my vision is to hire associate clergy who will not only bless our parish life during their time here but will eventually go forth to bless the wider church in new significant leadership positions. Still, that does not make such losses easy.
Again, I share my gratitude in having intersected with Charlie’s ministry here for a time. Please be intentional in the coming days in expressing your own gratitude for Charlie, Brooke, Chase, Ashton, and Saxon. Despite our sadness in saying goodbye, from a Kingdom perspective this is a very exciting development for the Holts and for our Lord’s church.
Yours in Christ,
The Rev. Dr. R. Leigh Spruill,
Join us on Sunday, July 3 at 9 am as Charlie preaches in the church and for a reception following at 10:10 am in Sumners Hall. Donate to Charlie's purse by sending your check to St. John the Divine, 2450 River Oaks Blvd, Houston 77019 with 'Charlie Holt Purse' in the memo line or by donating online here.