Parish Profile

Our Next Rector

Welcome Who Are the Saints? The Saints’ Response to the Gospel The Saints in Fellowship with One Another Our Next Rector The Saints Behind this Profile

This profile elsewhere implies much of what we seek in our next rector. We of course would prefer someone who is perfect at all times and with everything, but we understand that Jesus has other commitments. Fortunately for you, our self-discernment over the past few months has identified a smaller number of essential considerations, which follow.

A Gifted Administrator. All Saints’ is, among other things, a multi-million-dollar non-profit corporation. Our next rector will manage a very professional, proactive staff with low turnover. You will oversee the preservation of ten buildings spread over a city block, the administration of a substantial budget and endowment, and the maintenance of relationships with highly visible and influential public and private organizations. We do not insist that our new rector have held a similar position in an equally large parish. First, but not foremost, you must nevertheless be able to demonstrate, either as a priest or in a previous career, your skill as a highly capable senior manager.

Beyond this initial secular prerequisite, you should endeavor to realize your baptismal blessing, and to help us realize ours, in particular ways.

“An inquiring and discerning heart.” We seek a rector imbued with a holy curiosity, who wants to learn as much as to teach, and who is willing to think daringly about how the Saints can respond to the Gospel. Over half of the adult Saints hold graduate degrees of one kind or another. We appreciate intellectual rigor and sophistication, but we also enjoy great storytelling and tend not to be interested much in theory for its own sake. We have enjoyed a long tradition of outstanding preaching that appeals to our heads as well as our hearts – not surprisingly, our survey and focus groups have identified strong sermons as an absolute “must have” from our new rector. Beyond the pulpit, your lively intellect will help us take advantage of the great opportunities before us: the possibilities that arise from owning our own city block, the evangelism and service that our campus and willingness to use technology make possible, and the Saints’ yearning to identify the next step in our journey together. We are smart folks who need a smart rector.

“The courage to will and to persevere.” We want you to challenge our complacency, and to help us undertake ambitious work. Your resilience will help you to remind us how throughout our history we have been told, “Do not be afraid.” In your early days with us, your sense of self will also sustain you when you inevitably prove not to be Geoffrey or Harry or Martha. At the same time, you must possess the self-confidence to be authentic. You should express great humility as easily as great self-assurance. You have faults. Much as we hate to admit it, we have faults. We will want you to be courageous with your own vulnerability. We may surprise you by responding as Christians.

“A spirit to know and love God.” Our survey reveals that, in general, we more often express our spirituality corporately than in individual practice. This preference to pray, sing and hear the Gospel together suggests that we seek right relationship with God primarily through connections with one another. A number of us perceive an unnecessary political partisanship imposed on our corporate life – yet our passion for community prevails, and we gather at the Lord’s table despite those differences. We will need you to honor our experience of seeing God in our fellow Saints, and our desire to deepen our relationships with our neighbor and our common Creator. While we expect you to be approachable and to be a part of our journey together, we do not expect you to minister to our need for community by forging meaningful personal relationships with each one of us. Our size makes that impossible. You should, however, remember that, for us, whenever we gather – whether to assist, to celebrate, or to console – God is there.

“The gift of joy and wonder in all God’s works.” The Saints are funny – sometimes even intentionally – and a sense of humor is non-negotiable, both for us and for your own sanity. We recognize too that joy and wonder encompass far more than lightheartedness. We live in a broken world that often tempts us to despair and division. We have sometimes reacted too cautiously, and without a sense of the possibilities that we can make real. Our rector should remind us that the Gospel’s command of radical inclusion is good news to be proclaimed in the face of the darkness. We know that Lent promises Easter. We seek a rector who never allows us to forget that.

  • “Humor, humor, humor!”

    “I want a new rector who is authentic and open hearted, someone who can preach and lead with their heart, be vulnerable and real and really with the parishioners.”

    “An inspirational and interesting speaker who gives us something that we will still thinking about on Tuesday.”

    “A brilliant, articulate rector who gets along with people and runs an appropriately tight ship, who isn’t so folksy or administratively loose that we lose parishioners, lose support for our various missions or lose sight of or lessen our collectively high standards…. I don’t want things dumbed down.”

    “An extrovert who genuinely loves and is comfortable connecting with a wide variety of people, a good listener who communicates compassion and interest, a person whose sermons combine fine exegesis with storytelling.”

    “(Don’t) make the assumption that we all follow the same political leanings and make everyone feel welcome regardless of party affiliation.”

    “All Saints’ has a critical need of a priest who is extremely good at pastoral care.”

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