Holy Innocents' Episcopal Church

Go

Clergy Corner

Staff News: Celebration and Farewell

Dear Friends,
 
Today in the church calendar, we celebrate the Feast of Elizabeth Ann Seton, a woman born and raised in the Episcopal Church who became a saint in the Roman Catholic Church. I suppose there is some symmetry that today we hear from the Rev. Lisa Zaina who was raised in the Roman Catholic Church and thankfully came to the Episcopal tradition and has graced Holy Innocents’ with her many and varied gifts. Her call to become the Rector of Christ Church in Rockville, Maryland, is wonderful news for the larger church but hard news for all of us.

I have only been with you a scant six months but have grown to enjoy working with Lisa on every level.  Her keen insights, quick wit, and generous spirit have been a touchstone for Holy Innocents’ for the last four years. She has worked with three Rectors, served as interim Rector a time or two, and rebuilt our budget process from the ground up. Of course, those accomplishments belie the deep and abiding grace she shares with all those she serves. She is a leader in every sense of the word, a pastor of great skill, and a minister of the gospel on every level. I will miss my friend even as I say that Christ Church will be richly blessed with her leadership and ministry.
 
We will celebrate Lisa’s ministry with Holy Innocents’ on Sunday, February 3. We will share more information as we plan ways to send her off in style. Until then, I invite your prayers for Lisa during this time of transition and change as well as for our community as we say “farewell” to a beloved friend.
 
May God bless,

The Rev. Dr. Bill Murray
Rector


 

My season with you is drawing to a close. Perhaps you don’t realize this, but I have spent almost my entire priesthood with you. You have been an integral part of my formation as a person of faith as well as a priest, and for that I always will be thankful.

It is because of the way that you’ve been so generous with your love that I am ready to meet a new challenge and have accepted the call to be Rector of Christ Church Rockville in the Diocese of Washington. I am very excited about this call and look forward to getting to know the people of Christ Church, but I will miss you and always will carry you in my heart.

You have given me the gift of sharing your joys and your sorrows. That is one of the greatest privileges that someone can give another. I have been blessed by your trust in me as a member of your community. You have treated me like a member of your families, and for that I am grateful.

Words cannot adequately express the range of emotions that I have as I contemplate your absence in my life. You have meant so much to me in so many different ways.

I so often tell people that we are fortunate to have loved, and been loved, in ways that create an ache in our hearts when loved ones are no longer present. As I move on to my next call, I am aware of each and every one of those aches, and they bear your names. If I were more sophisticated, I’d try to find a quote from a theologian or saint, or at least say that the following comes from A.A. Milne. The truth of the matter is that it was Winnie the Pooh who said, “How lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard.”

We are people of resurrection. And, resurrection means that before there is a new beginning, there must be an end. I will be with you until Sunday, February 3. My first day at Christ Church will be March 1. And, for those of you who don’t know, I am beginning a Doctor of Ministry in Public Engagement at Wesley Theological Seminary in Washington, DC. And, I will be out of the office during the first two weeks of January. However, I will see you every Sunday until, and including, February 3.

Please know that I love you and will not forget you and all you’ve done for me. I cherish your prayers as I prepare to leave your midst and be present in a new community. You always will have my love and prayers.

Faithfully,
Lisa