For a parish that has been limited in its ability to function over the past several months, there's a lot going on at St. Dunstan's these days! This is such a joy, since our buildings have been closed for more than half of the time that I have been your Rector. You may remember that we had high hopes back in January and February of what we might accomplish together this year...but as spring gave way to summer and summer turned to fall, we had to table one dream after another. It feels as though much of our energy has gone into just trying to survive, rather than into living out our mission.
But God is not done with St. Dunstan's yet! On the contrary: For all of the challenges that 2020 has wrought, exciting things are happening in our parish right now. Here are just some of the highlights:
- Many of us were able to worship outside, in person, on our beautiful grounds, several times this fall. Special thanks are due to the Regathering Team - Carl Adams, Karen Edwards, Frenchie Gogos, Vince Leonard, and Rosi Sweeney - for all their hard work to make these services possible.
- We are blessed by the presence of two students from the Virginia Theological Seminary who have chosen to serve at St. Dunstan's as part of the VTS Contextual Ministry program. We are delighted, Robin and Fergie, that you have chosen to minister with us!
- We soon will begin interviews for our new Director of Children, Youth, and Family Ministries, who - God willing - will join us in Advent to begin to help us reimagine and rebuild our formation programs for our youngest members. This is very exciting news, and I ask your prayers as this process unfolds.
- We are about to complete some necessary upgrades to our A/V system in the church, so as to improve our live broadcasts of worship, concerts, and other events. If the pandemic has taught us anything, it is that we need to be increasingly nimble about the ways in which we connect with our parishioners.
- We are broadening the scope of our ministry by teaming up with two of our neighboring parishes, the Church of the Redeemer and St. John's, Norwood, for prayer and Outreach. (Please see below for more information about these initiatives.)
The list goes on. The point, of course, is that - just as the banner on Massachusetts Avenue reminds us - our buildings may be closed, but the Church is very much open. Please plan to join us via Zoom and Facebook Live this Sunday, November 15, as we celebrate Consecration Sunday, honor our Veterans, and learn about new possibilities for service to our neighbors in this community.
This is an exciting time in this corner of God's Kingdom here at St. Dunstan's, and I thank God for each one of you. I look forward to ministering in Christ's Name together in the weeks and months to come.