Dear Fellow Members of the St. Luke’s Community,
Hello and, finally, Happy Spring! I’m writing to share some information with you and, hopefully, to begin an on-going, mutually beneficial dialogue with you.
As you know, Jinni Rock-Bailey and I have the privilege of serving you as Wardens and in this capacity we want to expand and enhance the ways in which we do so. One such opportunity is to communicate more proactively with you, as we’ll detail momentarily. Another is to encourage you to choose to engage in the myriad meaningful Ministries here at St. Luke’s, which, we believe, will not only benefit you personally as you contribute more impactfully to our wonderful community, but also help us touch and enrich the lives of ever more members of our community and the community at large (which will help us achieve our aspiration to be the Cathedral in the Community).
So, let’s talk about communication: In short, we welcome it. We’re interested in your issues and concerns, of course, but also in what moves you most about your St. Luke’s experience. In this way we can partner with our esteemed Rector and others to work to improve the St. Luke’s Experience continuously. To keep it real, though, will we be able to address each and every concern fully? Honestly, probably not. One thing that I can share with you is just how complex an organization our community is and thus how challenging it is to enlist each other in addressing our challenges and in taking full advantage of our opportunities. What we hope occurs is that by becoming and staying ever more aware of what’s going on we can identify common themes and/or opportunities and address them for maximum mutual benefit.
In this spirit, then, we’d like to announce a new Adult Forum: Wardens’ Town Halls on the fifth Sundays of the month (which occur quarterly). The inaugural one will be on Sunday, July 30th, at 11:30am. We hope that you’ll join us to have a robust conversation highlighting both what’s going on in our Parish as well as the opportunities that can enrich us all.
(The next Wardens’ Town Hall after that will be Sunday, October 29th, but we probably won’t hold one on New Year’s Eve…. )
Also, you can expect that we’ll reach out to you electronically like this on a quarterly basis to share information and invite your response and participation.
Next, let’s talk about opportunities for our Parish:
The first that I’d like to highlight is the newly reconstituted Buildings & Grounds Committee. Simply put, our wonderful campus requires a lot of thoughtful examination and planning to maintain and enhance it, and, as you may have noticed, our church staff is a little too modest to address this fully and well. Accordingly, we need fellow parishioners to get involved, helping us to figure out how to address the issues and opportunities that come with a near century-old stone church, a lovely Parish Hall and a (multi-use) Rectory.
A second opportunity is with respect to the St. Luke’s Grill Team, the small but merry band whose singed forearms enable the provision of tasty grilled treats to the Parish on a monthly basis during the temperate weather. We need a few more intrepid members, especially those adept at serving (which has the added advantage of being a less flammable role). Our next service is on Sunday, June 18th – Fathers’ Day – during which time we’ll treat our fellow parishioners to delectable treats and then, for the male members of the team, promptly do little else for the rest of our special day, or so I’m told….
A third opportunity that I’d like you to consider is joining the Spiritual Enrichment Team (SET). SET sponsors and/or organizes the vast majority of our Spiritual Enrichment activities, from Bible Study (et. al.) courses to Adult Forum Series to guest speaker events to the Spiritual Explorers Book Club and more. Simpy put, we need a few more creative souls to help us organize and develop some offerings for the upcoming summer and fall. We intend to deliver engaging programs this summer so that we enter the fall with momentum that leads to even greater participation in our offerings by St. Lukers and our friends from the broader community.
Are there even more ways than these to get involved? Absolutely … and we’d be happy to share these with you – and will do so over time in these quarterly updates – so if you’re moved by one of the above, please let me/us know. If something else inspires you, let Jinni, John or me know and we’ll get you plugged in with others who share your interest. Whatever your gifts, we strongly encourage you to share them more meaningfully in our community. St. Luke’s is already such a robust and Spirited experience because so many contribute so meaningfully. In this spirit, I ask you what (else) you could contribute and, in so doing, experience God more and more profoundly in this special place.
In closing, thank you for being a part of this wonderful community. I hope that you’ll continue to engage ever more meaningfully and, in so doing, we’ll make this sacred place an even more incredible experience for the members of this community as well as for our neighbors in Montclair and its surrounding area as we fulfill our mission truly to be the Cathedral in the Community.
All the best,
Walter K. Booker, Warden