. . . and the Rev. Timothy Watt has come just in time! We are grateful to have Tim with us as we seek to know, love, and serve Christ together. He will be preaching this week and becoming a regular part of the rota as we move forward. His wife Tanya is completing her Master of Divinity degree this year in Virginia.
My role as rector will continue to evolve as we enter into new levels of staffing and ministry. Tim will be leading youth and regularly serving in liturgy to begin with, and his role will grow and settle as he gets on his feet in our parish. But for us and the Very Rev. Rebecca McClain, we are all here as servants and pastors.
The role of priest is both servant to God and servant to a community. As servants of God we adhere to a calling to be, as baptized Christians, faithful to God’s Word, our vows, and the worship and discipline of the church. We read, learn, and teach from the Bible and tradition, maintain professional standards and codes, and lead worship faithfully to form disciples of Christ. As servants to the community, our service is lived in leadership, teaching, and pastoral work.
A pastor is a shepherd. We tend the flock. Pastoral work can often be seen as only caring for the sick or distressed, but it is rooted in whole community care and leadership. We work to call the community, gather, and lead in the direction set by God in Christ. We also care for the wounded and sick, make sure that you are being fed (in Word and Sacrament), and that we are all unified in mind, spirit, and purpose, as much as that is up to us.
This work in a community our size takes several people with different gifts. I have been happy to lead through these last couple of years as your pastor and priest, but I am really grateful to have Rebecca and Tim on the team.
In all of our work, our purpose is to equip you to be God’s people. You are the royal priesthood, family of God, and the sheep of his pasture. We forget at our peril that God has made you his own and calls you by name. We are hear to help you follow God’s voice.
So join me in welcoming Tim to Christ Church of the Ascension and listening for his gifts and to God’s voice speaking through him.