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News from the Padre

January 24, 2022
Brother Sun sets each day with the promise to rise again tomorrow ♥️

Well folks, it’s on the Church’s Facebook page so here is the story. It isn’t long but it is important for Denise & me.

Y’all know what we have been dealing with the past year in terms of family, culminating in the death of our sweet Pixie. It goes back further than that but this is where we are.

When a pastor’s spiritual, emotional, physical, and mental batteries are drained and the same goes for his partner in faith, life, and ministry, one reaches a critical crossroads. We have been so focused on taking care of family and parishioners that we sort of forgot to take care of ourselves.

This reminds me of the class we took on Sabbath through Columbia Presbyterian Theological Seminary’s Spiritual Formation program. We had to ask for extensions on our final papers because, you guessed it, we had flunked Sabbath!

Well, here we are… in desperate need of time for healing and sabbath rest. Since I cannot be the pastor that Carrollton Presbyterian Church needs, it isn’t fair to either of us for me to continue. I have resigned my position as pastor and my last Sunday is February 6th. Our prayers are with our CPC family and we are thankful for the many prayers so many of our spiritual companions on the way continue to offer.

Since it is a sabbath rest and we don’t want to flunk that class again, we will not be moving right away. Somehow packing up, selling a house, and moving doesn’t sound very restful 😉

We trust in God to guide us and show us the road we will travel. To take the first step without seeing the rest of the stairway is liberating, not frightening.

In the words of Thomas Merton—You do not need to know precisely what is happening, or exactly where it is all going. What you need is to recognize the possibilities and challenges offered by the present moment, and to embrace them with courage, faith and hope. (Conjectures of a Guilty Bystander)

p.s. I guess this was longer than I said it would be! Go figure 🙄😉🤣

P.P.S. To our Austin friends, Dad doesn’t know yet. We will be traveling up to Minnesota shortly after the 6th and tell him in person.

11 Comments
  1. Blessings for both of you. {{{{{{{{{{{{{{{hugs}}}}}}}}}}}}}}}

    In the Episcopal Church – the rectors are required to take a year sabbatical every two years.

  2. joanne ramsthaler permalink

    A fulfilling year ahead, and much love and spiritual support. Namaste!

  3. While I’m sorry you are stepping down from the position, I’m also quite relieved to hear it. You and Denise have been dancing on the razors edge of burnout for the last 4 or 5 years and I’ve been concerned for your mental healths, most especially since last year and the loss of your beloved Pixie.

    May this year give you the time you need to rest, mourn, and heal.
    Love to you both. Xx

  4. Dear Michael, as reflected in comments by some of the others, I read your post with a sense of relief in some respects.
    The pilgrimage through life definitely has its ups and downs; and there’s a limit to what any person can cope with. From my perspective a few thousand miles away, you’ve made a very wise but I’m sure very difficult decision. I trust and pray that your sabbath rest will be fruitful.
    My prayers and blessings are with both you and Denise.
    Bruce

  5. Wishing you blessing and grace as you take time for yourself and your spouse. May God gift you with the healing you need and give you gifts of deep peace.

  6. Thom Fultz permalink

    Cindy and I will pray for you and Denise – may you continue to walk faithfully in this time of renewal and refreshing and re-evaluation. GLYASDI

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