My Friends at St. Stephen’s,
Blessed Advent! Well, it has definitely been an exciting year for us at St. Stephen’s. We have witnessed amazing growth. We have seen loved ones pass from our sight. We have bid others farewell as they have moved away. We stood up for the Gospel of Jesus and the Baptismal Covenant as we understand it. We have done what we have been called to do in very real and important ways—mission, worship, prayer and outreach. It is certainly exhilarating to be serving alongside all of you.
As we anxiously await the celebration of Jesus’ birth, I hope you will all know that I do so with true joy in my heart. This joy comes from knowing that we, at St. Stephen’s, are growing and expanding and being a vital and important presence in the community and the larger Church. I think we all have to admit that it is a great time to be at St. Stephen’s.
As we celebrate Christmas, be assured that I pray for each of you individually by name over the course of each week in my daily observance of the Daily Office. Also know that I will be remembering all of you at the altar during celebration of the Mass both on Sunday morning and Wednesday evening.
In return, I ask you to pray for me also. Pray also for the ministry and mission of St. Stephen’s. In your prayers, please ask you that God’s Spirit continues to be present here, and to refresh, renew and sustain us so that we can do the work we have been called to do.
My sincerest blessings to you and to all those you love and cherish during this season of joy, hope and love.