Tonight and tomorrow—Friday through Saturday—your vestry and I are out at Claggett Camp and Conference Center to eat, pray, and plan together for the coming program year.  It’ll be my first vestry retreat, and I feel grateful to be going with a group that is already devoted to this community and committed to the work of leadership.  It helps to quiet my butterflies.

For much of our time this weekend we will discuss a new initiative: Invite, Welcome, Connect.  As you may know, the diocese gave us a significant chunk of money to implement ministries that will help us reach out to a world in need of God’s love and help us reach inside to develop our capacity to do that.  The work of this vestry retreat is the beginning of work the whole parish will engage in the months to come.  It involves self-reflection, courage, creativity, and joy.  This is not just church-building; it’s Kingdom-building.

I’ll say more about this in the next few weeks, but if you’re interested you might check out the IWC website. There are a lot of great resources there. One includes a parish assessment that we will use this weekend: (Download Assessment).  Our Adult Christian Formation will focus on IWC, too, with the additional component of studying the book of Ruth, a profound story about how an outsider became an insider.  We are the ideal parish to take this project on because we already have abundant gifts of hospitality, compassion, and friendliness.  I hope you will join us for that starting September 15.

Meanwhile, please pray for us while we are on retreat.  You can be sure we will be praying for you and the whole parish, as well as giving thanks for all the blessings we share at Trinity.

In peace,

Rev. Rhetta Wiley