By James C. Sprouse, Senior Pastor
The Virginia Conference lists 1,060 clergy under appointment full and part time. Together, we serve the 1,205 churches throughout the state. On Wednesday, June 28, around 200 clergy and their families will load all their personal belongings into a moving van and travel to their next pastoral appointment. Some will travel to large, multi-staff church communities, others to rural congregations; all go in hopes of joining Christ in faithful ministry. Across the Conference, those clergy who are retiring will try to adjust to being retired and will feel a bit strange when Sunday rolls around and they find out what life is like in the pews … again.
This year, nearly two out of every 10 churches of the Virginia Conference will receive a different pastor.
On Sunday, July 2, twelve new pastors to the Arlington District will arrive in the pulpits of their churches prepared to work at making disciples for Jesus Christ. Those churches will swell in attendance as active and inactive members turn out to check out the new pastor or associate pastor.
The Arlington District will receive 12 new pastors, and bid farewell to 12 pastors who served our District in love and fellowship. There are two retirements on our District. A new satellite church begins on July 1 called Floris-Online. A new church start begins July 1 called Arlington New Faith Community. The District will close Impact Church, effective July 1. And, five candidates from the Arlington District Committee on Ordained Ministry will receive their first appointments.
On another joyous note: we welcome the reappointment of the Reverend Keith Lee as our associate pastor who is the spiritual leader for our youth, the Education Committee and Young Couples. We are also blessed by the reappointment of Reverend Eileen Gilmer as a Local Pastor appointed to serve Trinity in Outreach Ministry. Eileen is pursuing her M.Div. at Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington, DC. Join with me, Catherine, Eileen, Harriet, Keith, Jerry, Jose, our lay leader: Jose Rivera, and all the Trinity family as together we make disciple for Jesus Christ.