Welcome to Monday evening, Carlisle Wesleyan (and other friends)–
Those of you from CWC already know that a week ago, during our local church conference, I resigned as pastor at Carlisle Wesleyan. This week’s Pastor’s Posting will try to answer some of the questions you may have in all of this. The idea here is to help foster dialogue and discussion, so feel free to CONTACT ME — again, it’s worth the reminder that your comments here will be visible to everyone, so you may wish to e-mail or call me directly using the link just given. Before going any further it may be best for you to start by accessing a copy of my letter of resignation as a PDF file here: Resignation Letter.
Now, for some of your questions:
WHEN is your resignation effective?
Let me say, first of all, that both Sarah and I are committed to ‘finishing well.’ We promise to ‘be present’ as long as we’re your pastoral family–that means no checking out or hoping just to coast by until we exit. My role from here on out will be different than in the past as my focus won’t be much on long-term future and goals for CWC, but helping to prepare for and enable transition.
Our ‘”exit date” is to be determined by the District Superintendent and our Local Board of Administration. The Discipline, which is our denomination’s book of polity and procedure, uses a sixty-day time frame for the effective date of a resignation or the natural time of pastoral transition following the annual District Conference. So, look for our last official Sunday at CWC to be around either the last week of June or first week of July– but that’s an unofficial estimate on my part. I hope to know more about this soon–and when I know, you’ll know.
WHY are you leaving?
Take a look at the resignation letter–everything is summed up pretty well there. If you’d like more insight or discussion, feel free to contact and/or meet with me.
WHERE are you going?
Short answer: We have no idea.
Longer answer: My resignation wasn’t given because we have ‘someplace better’ to go to. It’s really a step of faith for Sarah and I–we felt very clearly that our time here was done and it would have been disobedient for us to remain in service at Carlisle Wesleyan. Our experience on this end has been described as “jumping off a cliff:” it’s exciting when it isn’t terrifying.
WHAT is CWC’s ‘next step?’
Our District Superintendent, Randy Swink, will be meeting with the church’s local leaders (Deemer Morrow, Denver Tuckey, and Kenn Tuckey) at the end of this month to work through some of those next steps. Part of this process will inevitably involve identifying the type of pastoral candidate needed by the church inluding the kind of person who will most fit the temperment, focus, and desire of CWC. This also involves getting an accurate picture of where Carlisle Wesleyan currently is in her journey.
The possibilities and intricacies of what Carlisle Wesleyan’s “next steps” could look like are virtually endless. The two best things you can be doing right now are: 1) praying for everyone to heed the leading of God’s Spirit throughout the process, and, 2) communicating openly and honestly with those in leadership regarding what you sense is needed. I know our leaders: they want to make sure your voice is heard and understood.
As we intercede for you, I ask that you please pray for Sarah and me–this is not an easy transition for any of us and this is a prime opportunity for each of us to be found supporting one another in focused prayer.
Be sure to let me know how you’re doing.