An Exciting New Season
June 28, 2016
A note from Rev. Ann Willet as we look forward to welcoming her to our FirstChurch family this Sunday.
With each new season in our lives, we have opportunities to experience God’s ever-present grace. Perhaps the new season is due to a change in career, the birth of a child, a promising new friendship, or the pain of loss. In the liminal space from one season to the next, God is with us.
Almost 20 years ago, my husband, Loren, and I had a dinner-time conversation with our family that heralded such a season. That night, we told our three daughters (then 5, 8, and 10) that I would be enrolling in Perkins School of Theology to pursue a ministry degree. Each girl reacted differently to the prospect of changes for our family. The greatest concern was from Caroline, our youngest, who asked, “Mama, when you move to seminary, who is going to take me to kindergarten?” There were plenty of challenges, but with flexibility, commitment, and love, we navigated the changes necessary for me to respond to God’s call to ordained ministry.
Now, in my 13th year of pastoral leadership, I have been blessed to serve at four churches, with the last eight years in the role of senior minister. My previous corporate career in financial management has been of great value as a pastoral leader. And in each time of pastoral transition and change, I find that I have new eyes to see the possibilities and new energy to move into God’s future.
In a few weeks, God is bringing me into a new season, as Executive Minister at First United Methodist Church of Dallas. Andy has been a friend and colleague in ministry for many years, and I am very excited to be joining this ministry team at FirstChurch. I am profoundly grateful to be invited into this community of saints, both past and present, who proclaim God’s love and justice and who answer the call to serve. I am especially indebted to our colleagues Rev. Blair Thompson and Rev. Wally Butts, who have faithfully shared their gifts to make this community even stronger. As they enter new seasons in ministry, our prayers go with them.
Andy and I are envisioning a new model for senior ministerial leadership that will enhance interaction with our neighborhood, outreach to the Dallas community, and care for the FirstChurch family. I am excited to be a part of this new collaborative leadership vision, and I look forward to offering my gifts, experiences, and perspectives as we strive to be faithful and fruitful. Our dream is that this ministry partnership will bring us to a new season for FirstChurch, in which we can continue to build on the gifts of a wonderful ministry team.
I can’t wait to get started!
I can’t wait to meet you!
Grace and peace,