What did I do this past summer? I’m happy to report that a major focus this summer was rest. I spent a lot of time in nature and in prayer. I began new exercise routines to improve my health. I had more time for family, for sleep, for reflection.
I spent one week with the Young Clergy Women’s Project at a conference in Boston, learning from Susan Beaumont. Her presentation, “Leading with Presence,” focused on ways to integrate traditional goal-driven leadership with the skills of contemplative leadership. This builds on her area of expertise, bringing business management tools and faith life together.
I spent another week in silent retreat at Marie Joseph Spiritual Center in Biddeford, ME. Walking along the ocean, participating in worship services twice a day, and meeting with a spiritual director, I had the chance to dive deep into my prayer life. I hope to visit again next year and make this part of my continuing education time.
Two weeks were spent on family vacation, one in Buffalo, NY, and one in Lincoln, NH.
During the other weeks, I alternated between work and rest, preparing for the year of ministry to come. I got a head start on our Congregational Giving appeal and created a worship planning spreadsheet for the program year. I developed a new strategies to track my tasks and arrange my calendar, setting fresh intentions about how I want to use my time. I am hopeful that you will see the fruits of these efforts, directly or indirectly, in the months to come.
I am profoundly grateful for the gift you have offered me in granting this time away. Thank you especially to Cindy Maybeck and all the lay leaders who helped sustain and strengthen our community during that time. I am excited to rejoin you and continue our ministry together.