It was about two years ago that I addressed the congregation and spoke about my entering into a season of “yes.” At that time, I assumed that would lead to serving our church in new ways, supporting committees, and leading initiatives. What I did not know, was that a much larger calling was beckoning me.
I began to explore this tug at my heart by taking classes at Hartford Seminary. As you might imagine, stepping into a classroom after 25 years brought with it a lot of anxiety! However, I quickly fell into the routine and flourished there, eventually joining the staff, organizing chapel services, and working with prospective students in their own discernment process. Your encouragement and feedback have played such an important role in my discernment process, and I am excited to share this update with you!
This fall, I will begin the next step in my journey, as a full-time student at Yale Divinity School and as a Member in Discernment in the United Church of Christ. I am grateful for the years of support this congregation has provided to me and the affirmations so many of you have given me as I explore this sense of call. While this new direction did not allow me to say yes to serving as AHCC’s Moderator, the next step after serving as Vice Moderator, I am responding Yes! to a bigger call in the life of the Church universal.
I hope you will join me in praying this prayer written by Thomas Merton as I embark on these next steps in my journey:
My Lord God,
I have no idea where I am going.
I do not see the road ahead of me.
I cannot know for certain where it will end.
nor do I really know myself,
and the fact that I think I am following your will
does not mean that I am actually doing so.
But I believe that the desire to please you
does in fact please you.
And I hope I have that desire in all that I am doing.
I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire.
And I know that if I do this you will lead me by the right road,
though I may know nothing about it.
Therefore will I trust you always though
I may seem to be lost and in the shadow of death.
I will not fear, for you are ever with me,
and you will never leave me to face my perils alone.