Dear Resurrection Family and Friends,
As we approach the beginning of David Drake’s Sabbatical, the Sabbatical Committee, along with the Vestry, would like to address what is perhaps the most essential (and perhaps challenging) aspect of the Sabbatical. That is in regard to a cessation of communication and contact with David during the Sabbatical.
The Sabbatical is a “Season of Retreat”; a time set aside for reflection, restoration, and most importantly, a prolonged season that will enable David to connect deeply with the Lord and refresh his spiritual life. Sounds good right? But here is our challenge: we love him, and we enjoy spending time with him. Many of us have a friendship with David that goes beyond a pastoral relationship, so it will be difficult to lose contact with him. And guess what – that is going to be a challenge for David too, because he will miss being with us. After all, David is an “extrovert’s extrovert!” But as a friend, you know that he is feeling pretty burnt out, and we need to help him replenish and renew.
That is why all of us, including David, must abide by the boundaries that have been set up by the Sabbatical Committee and the Vestry. After all, if we are going to invest in giving David this much needed period of rest, let’s make sure it is EVERYTHING it should be:
Who to contact for what:
It may not be easy, but think of this as the greatest gift you can give David right now. In order for David to refill his tank and recharge his batteries, he needs QUIET. He must have space to allow God to enter in ways he cannot anticipate.
Taking this Sabbatical will enable him to return and lead our church with a renewed vigor and depth. It is in our best interest to support this time of refreshment by creating quiet space for the Holy Spirit to be more present in him. Thank you for your prayers and support!
Serving the Lord with you,
T.J. Anderson Steve Dassoulas
Senior Warden Chairman, Sabbatical Committee
"What can I do to help?"
In order for the sabbatical to be a time of deep spiritual, personal and professional renewal and rest for David, the Sabbatical Committee has identified the following ways in which the Church can serve David and his family:
1) Pray! Pray that David will be able to find rest and renewal in his time away so that he can focus and listen to God.
2) Serve at Resurrection! David’s sabbatical will provide the Church wonderful opportunities to raise up new leaders and people who serve. Prayerfully consider how you might serve.
3) Dig in! Over the next 5 months, there will be at least 3 opportunities to tangibly help the Drake family by assisting with cleanup and gardening at their house. Led by Tom Bosley, it will consist of various yard chores like mulching, planting, pruning, weeding, and cleanup. This will be an enormous help to the Drakes and will allow David to continue to focus on his study and reflection. Weather permitting, this is currently scheduled for July 15, August 19, and November 4 from 10am - noon. If interested, please contact Tom Bosley at email@example.com.
4) Provide David with the space necessary for rest and renewal. David and the sabbatical committee have carefully considered and established boundaries to ensure the success of David’s sabbatical. This includes a cessation of ALL communication between Resurrection members, (including vestry and staff), and David. David will not respond to voice, email or text messages during his sabbatical, will use a different mobile phone number and will not be on any social media. This may sound extreme, but it is what is needed for David to recharge during his sabbatical. Please respect these boundaries and refrain from contacting him. David will look forward to returning to the church family in December.
“What are ways we can pray for the sabbatical?”
David Drake will be on sabbatical from August first through the beginning of Advent. His actual time away from Resurrection will begin July first, with a month of non-sabbatical summer travel.)
“What will David and his family be doing while he is on sabbatical?”
During the month of July the Drake family will be vacationing together, spending quality time together, growing together, playing together, and strengthening bonds. After the period of their vacation, David will leave for Colorado and his annual Anglican Leadership Initiative trip, which is a leadership training program for Bishops which David has helped to design and lead.
His actual sabbatical begins August 1, and during that time he will tackle the list of ‘Rs’ posted in the May 12 entry describing the goals of his sabbatical. (Scroll down for this list.) This will involve study, reflection, some travel, and time alone as well as meeting with mentors and spiritual directors. During his times away there will be opportunities for all of us to offer practical assistance to Kristin and the girls—more about that later. The sabbatical team is working with Kristin to come up with a list of ways we can serve her, and you can expect to see a sign up sheet in the weeks to come.
(David Drake will be on sabbatical from August first through the beginning of Advent. His actual time away from Resurrection will begin July first, with a month of non-sabbatical summer travel.)
”How will David’s responsibilities be reallocated?” David has worked diligently with the vestry, staff and sabbatical committee to be sure that our parish needs will be covered during his absence. The Church will be led by TJ Anderson (Sr. Warden), Mark Deering (Jr. Warden), Patrick Cunningham, and David Pennylegion. The wardens with Patrick Cunningham will be meeting weekly to review the concerns of the church and monitor church activities.
David Pennylegion will be the chief pastor of the congregation, and will be in charge of worship, preaching, teaching, and the oversight of the various ministries—Ushers, Altar Guild, Acolytes/Chalicists, etc. On a day to day basis pastoral care will continue under the able administration of Pam Waldhauser and our team of Lay Pastoral Ministers.
Because of our foundational belief that the Church is led by Jesus Christ and His Holy Spirit through people who have been given the necessary gifts for the roles for which they’ve been selected, we are confident that Res will continue to function in a smooth and Godly way. In addition we believe that God will raise up and equip the people needed to step into new roles of service and leadership as required.
Next week: “What will David and his family be doing while he is on sabbatical?”
What are the goals of this sabbatical?
Sabbatical leave is a time for our rector to shift gears in order to rest, disengage, study, reflect, and spend time with his family in order to return to minister among us refreshed and renewed in body, mind, and spirit. In addition, it is a time for us as a congregation to examine our own lives as members of the body of Christ, and to explore new ways to serve, grow, contribute and possibly to lead.
The sabbatical time for David can be divided into roughly five segments*:
1. Release and Relinquish – During this first phase he will disengage from all ministry and leadership responsibilities.
2. Rest and Recovery – “Rest” in the second phase of the sabbatical doesn’t mean ceasing from all activity. Rather, he will concentrate on what restores him emotionally and feeds him spiritually.
3. Reflect and Refocus – During this phase, he will be listening for what God might be saying to him, scheduling extended time alone with God.
4. Realignment and/or Reassignment – Asking God:“Father, what changes in my life and ministry would you like me to make as a result of hearing from You?”
5. Re-Entry/Re-Engagement – In this phase David will transition back into ministry.
The sabbatical time for our congregation will be an opportunity to enter more fully into the corporate life of our church, to raise up new leaders, and grow as a community.
*(These categories are borrowed from “Sabbatical Guidelines – A Season of Renewal”, published by the Navigators.)
What are the details of David’s time away?
The vestry has specified that he will take this sabbatical beginning August 1 and returning in Advent. His actual time away from us will be from July 1 through November 15. The first week will be spent on his Anglican Leadership Initiative (ALI) trip, a leadership training trip that he helps lead for bishops in the ACNA. The next three weeks will be spent on his regular family vacation. His actual sabbatical will begin August 1. He will be available to staff after November 15, he will worship with us for the first time on December 3, and his first preaching assignment will be December 10.
In the coming weeks, we will address additional questions, such as:
“Who will cover David’s responsibilities while he is away?”
“What will David’s family do while he is on sabbatical?”
“What can I do to help?
The Sabbatical Committee, with members Steve Dassoulas (Chair), Patrick Cunningham, Fayne Farrar, Tim Foster, Meg Lawrence, Jeff Merwin, Catie Mickletz, Molly O'Donovan, and Dedi Whitaker represent a diverse group from our congregation, staff, and Vestry. We have been working diligently to develop plans for the upcoming Sabbatical for David and the Church.
The goal of the sabbatical is to be a planned time by which our Rector receives spiritual, personal and professional renewal and rest. It is also a planned time for the congregation to raise new leaders and to grow as a community. The Committee's mission is to ensure the goals of the sabbatical will be met.
John 15:1-2 says, "I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful." We are excited about the opportunity the Sabbatical presents us to grow spiritually together and we anticipate we will be a much stronger and fruitful community through this time. We are also excited to bless David and the Drake family with this well-deserved time off and an opportunity to grow individually and together without the day to day pressures of ministry.
David will be away from July 1 through November 15th, with David returning to work with staff in a limited capacity until the beginning of Advent - which is when we will have him return to full time ministry.
The Sabbatical Committee
April 28, 2017
Dear Resurrection Family and Friends,
He is Risen! This statement of fact is the foundation of Christianity. It is a truth that separates what we believe from all other religions. By conquering death Jesus offers us the gifts of forgiveness, renewal and eternal life. The Easter message is one of living hope and great joy, a message that Christians celebrate throughout the year.
Holy week was a particularly special time for us at Church of the Resurrection. I know you join me in expressing sincere gratitude to our clergy and staff who worked tirelessly planning wonderful services, an amazing music program and fun family activities that helped us to connect with, worship, and remember our Lord who died for us.
These past two weeks have made me more mindful of what a precious resource the staff is to our community. They are given to us as gifts from God and there comes a time that we need to allow them time to be with Him for refreshment and renewal. David Drake was called to Resurrection seven years ago, leaving his former church where he served as Rector for five years. Our church has experienced incredible growth under his leadership and his seven years of service to our congregation have been selflessly given.
In October 2015 the vestry recognized the need for a period of rest for David and offered him the opportunity to go on sabbatical. This decision was announced to the congregation in early 2016 and received strong support. I am grateful for the unity we share as we prepare to transition to a period of Sabbath rest which will begin on July 1 and end on November 15.
The leadership sees this sabbatical period as a time of spiritual renewal for our whole church family. A Sabbatical Planning team, led by Steve Dassoulas, has been working collaboratively with the vestry and staff to ensure a plan is in place for our congregation. The team is also overseeing plans for David, and the Drake family, as they enter into this time of refreshment and renewal. Starting next week the team will provide weekly articles related to the sabbatical which you can access through Res News or the church website. We welcome any and all conversations. Please feel free to address any questions to your vestry or to members of the Sabbatical Committee.
I ask for your prayers as we navigate these changes. We look forward to seeing where the Lord will lead us. He is our rock and He is very much alive. He is risen, indeed! Alleluia!
T.J. Anderson, Senior Warden
The Sabbatical Committee, with members Steve Dassoulas (Chair), Patrick Cunningham, Fayne Farrar, Tim Foster, Meg Lawrence, Jeff Merwin, Catie Mickletz, Molly O'Donovan, and Dedi Whitaker represent a diverse group from our congregation, staff, and Vestry. This team will be providing information and updates about the Sabbatical here.