Rector Search Update: September 24, 2019
Dear parish friends:
Fall greetings! I hope that you are all enjoying the kickoff of the program year at Good Shepherd as much as my family and I are. My husband and I were inspired by Dr. Catherine Meeks’ words at last Sunday’s worship service and at brunch at The Hill; my daughters look forward each week to Edge and Rite 13; and we are all happy and full after Chef Robert’s delicious dinners at Wednesdays on Windsor. The continued worship and programmatic excellence delivered by our clergy and staff is matched only by the unceasing energy of our parishioners, and it warms my heart each week to see the vibrancy of our community – even during this time of transition. Good job, Good Shepherd!
Today, I write with information on how Good Shepherd will be sharing news of our search going forward, as well some updates on our search committee’s work, the process for nominating a potential rector, and the interim rector search.
RECTOR SEARCH UPDATES: WHERE AND WHEN TO FIND THEM
As Senior Warden, I will update the congregation on the status of our rector search via an emailed letter each month. Additionally, you may find this information (as well as the past months’ updates) on the Good Shepherd website under Senior Warden’s Updates in the Rector Search section.
THE RECTOR SEARCH COMMITTEE
The Rector Search Committee, a group of 13 of your fellow parishioners chaired by Bobby Chesney and Lisa McMinn, was selected by the vestry and blessed by Bishop Andy Doyle in May, and has been actively engaged since then in accordance with the Diocese of Texas’ process for conducting the search. A key early step involved the parish-wide survey conducted last spring, the results of which were considered carefully prior to development of the Parish Profile—a comprehensive overview of our parish that plays an important role in all rector searches in the Episcopal Church.
This summer, the Diocesan transition team trained the search committee in the process of developing specific interview questions for prospective rectors, as well as in orchestrating the interviews themselves. This month, the committee has been hard at work drafting, debating, and refining this extensive slate of questions which seek to address the specific competencies and characteristics that our congregation identified as important during both the parish survey and the strategic planning effort last fall.
The committee meets each week and will begin receiving names of prospective rectors by the end of September. (As explained in more detail below, all nominees are screened by the Diocese before the names are conveyed to the search committee.) Please remember that the committee has pledged to conduct its search with the utmost confidentiality: Committee members may share what they are doing – for example, they may share that they are meeting weekly and discussing candidates – but they may not share names, circumstances, or places of the candidates.
HOW TO NOMINATE CANDIDATES FOR GOOD SHEPHERD’S SIXTH RECTOR
If you would like to submit the name of an ordained Episcopal priest for consideration, please fill out this form, which goes directly to the Diocesan Transition Minister. Paper forms and pre-addressed envelopes are also available in the church offices at our Windsor and Woodland campuses.
As stated above, names of candidates are submitted directly to the Diocese of Texas, rather than to the search committee. When a priest’s name is submitted for consideration (either by the priest himself or herself, by a member of our congregation, or by a third party), the name goes first to the Diocesan Transition Minister and then on to Bishop Doyle. If Bishop Doyle feels the nominated priest would be a good fit for our parish, the search committee will receive the priest’s Office of Transition Ministry profile (similar to a lay person’s CV).
INTERIM RECTOR UPDATE
Many have asked whether or not Good Shepherd will have an Interim Rector during this transition period. To date, the vestry has received from the Diocese the names of two priests as candidates for Interim Rector and ultimately has determined that neither candidate was the right priest to serve this large, complex institution. While we continue to be open to candidates for Interim Rector, we are also confident in the leadership and ability of our clergy, staff, and lay leaders. Our worship services and programs continue unabated as we prepare for the arrival of our next leader.
In the coming months, please keep the search committee and their work in your prayers. Your continued support for this community is an important part of our search process – your attendance at worship, participation in this fall’s stewardship campaign, and attendance at parish programs signals to candidates the strength and vitality of our parish. We appreciate all you do for Good Shepherd. Thank you, as always, for being a valuable part of this beloved community.