Gratitude leads up to season of change

Rev. Shelly Petz


Thank you for your courageous leadership. Thank you for your faithfulness in proclaiming the good news of Jesus Christ. Thank you for living out your call at such a time as this.

I see you. I see you serving countless hours, ministering to, with, and on behalf of your mission fields. I see you working on sermons, visiting the sick, ministering to the grieving, teaching children, youth and adults, administering the life of the congregation, engaging your communities, navigating personal and professional life, administering the sacraments, serving God and neighbor. I see you answering questions from people anxious/passionate/engaged about what is next in the life of the United Methodist Church and if there will be a place for them. I see you exploring the same questions for yourself. In the midst of this, you are asked to lead and serve and shepherd all those entrusted into your care. You may or may not even know where you are leading.

Susan Beaumont will be one of our Annual Conference speakers this year. She has written a book called “How to Lead When You Don’t Know Where You’re Going: Leading in a Liminal Season.” If you haven’t already, would you consider joining me in reading this? In reading the book, I have given myself permission to name my experience as a United Methodist pastor right now, and to engage this as a spiritual discipline, with a spirit of curiosity, awe, and openness to discovering God in the wilderness.

I am so thankful for each of you. May you know you have permission to take care of your relationship with God, and your own spiritual, emotional, and physical health. May God’s word and work in your life be made known in ways not yet imagined. May Christ’s light that lives in you find its way to illumine your steps of today. May the Holy Spirit be with you always.