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  • J. Snowden Stanley

Sabbatical Grant Awarded

As many are aware, Arianne will take the first sabbatical of her ordained ministry from February- April 2018. I am happy share the good news that the Lilly Endowment National Clergy Renewal Program has awarded Good Shepherd a grant to support Arianne and Good Shepherd during that sabbatical.

We know that effective pastoral leadership requires strength and continual spiritual growth. This is one reason why the Diocese of Maryland and others encourage priests to take a sabbatical at least after five years of ministry at one church. The purpose of a sabbatical is to provide time for rest, reflection and renewal, a stepping away from daily responsibilities to intentionally devote time and energy toward replenishment. When we discussed a rector's sabbatical leave at our vestry retreat in August 2016 we talked about how sabbatical leave avoids burnout and turnover while also providing time for development of new insights for effective leadership of the Good Shepherd family.

Arianne’s proposal was submitted to the Lilly Endowment in the spring of last year after being discussed with the Vestry. She will be on leave for three months, from February to April 2018. Each month she will take one trip and then have time at home for reflection and discovering new ways to connect here in the Baltimore area. Guest preachers and teachers will join us for the seasons of Lent and Easter to support Jessica as she leads us during that time. Further details of sabbatical time will continue to be shared in the coming weeks.

Since the Lilly Endowment created the National Clergy Renewal Program grants in 2000, more than 2,450 congregations across the nation have participated. “Lilly Endowment recognizes the important role that pastors play in shaping and guiding the work of Christian Churches”, said Dr. Christopher L. Coble, the Endowment’s vice-president for religion. “We can think of no better way to honor these hardworking, faithful men and women than to help them step away from the demands of leadership for a brief period of rest and spiritual renewal. We regularly hear that these renewal experiences are transformative for pastors, their families and their congregations.”

I am convinced that next Spring will be an excellent time for Arianne to take her sabbatical and that it will provide a wonderful experience for this parish family. We

are excited to see what what she brings back to Good Shepherd as we look forward to partnering together in the years to come.

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