Sunday, January 22, 2012

Vicar's Address to the 2012 Annual Meeting

The Rev’d Canon Amy Chambers Cortright
Annual Meeting – Vicar’s Address
Good Afternoon!

The Dean has shared a lot of really, really good news with you about where we have been this year and where we are heading in 2012 and beyond. It is truly an exciting time in the life of Christ Church Cathedral.

As the Vicar of our congregation, I am tasked with the nuts and bolts of congregational life, with oversight of our common life, specifically in the areas of Inreach, Outreach, Worship and Education.

As I mentioned in my address at the Annual Meeting last year, when I arrived at the Cathedral, nearly a year and a half ago, the first thing I looked for was a list of ministries and chairs – but I couldn’t find even one. I knew that we needed to spend some intentional time getting organized – and establishing a clear picture of what was happening here, when, - and by whom -- following the why, of course -- the critical work of Chapter.

It was quite evident that some structural work was necessary. This past year has been spent capturing each ministry, assessing status, identifying leadership and categorizing. “The Chart” as it has been fondly named, is a work in progress. It is a great start – “first generation” so to speak.

My goal for this morning is to leave you with a clear understanding of how this new structure works. The six ministry areas of Christ Church Cathedral are: Inreach, Outreach, Communications and Evangelism (one), Education, Worship and Administration. Each and every ministry in this place falls into one of these categories. Some ministries may fall into multiple categories, but for the purposes of organization, I have given each one a “home” on the chart.

For each ministry area, two Chapter liaisons are assigned and act as go-betweens for the individual ministries - and Chapter. The Chapter liaisons do not chair any ministry areas and may or may not serve on any of the ministries in his or her area. As Vicar, I oversee the ministry areas of Inreach, Outreach, Worship and Education. As Dean, Mike oversees Communications and Evangelism and Administration.

One week before Chapter meetings, liaisons send an e-mail to the Contacts of each ministry in their area asking if Chapter involvement is desired or required in any way. In this way, each and every ministry has monthly contact with Chapter.
With our new structure, two persons are required to serve as “Contacts” for each ministry with very few exceptions (which are noted). In this way, responsibility is shared and we know that at least two people are willing to “claim” and live out each ministry. Sustainability is very important in our work and all too often we suffer the classic church syndromes of burnout, ownership and resentment – and in some cases, more than one or all of them at the same time. Ministry is to be for us, though sacrificial, life-giving and joyful.

In the spirit of clarity and sustainability, some ministries that have been traditionally linked at the Cathedral are now separate so that the work of one group is more focused and manageable.

If you are the head (one of two “Contacts”) for a ministry at the Cathedral, you should be notified about your new Chapter liaison (assignments will be made after the elections of this meeting) - and you should be receiving a monthly e-mail asking if your ministry has anything to report or anything upon which Chapter must decide). Please be in touch with me if that is not happening. Copies of the Ministry Structure may be found at your tables – please take one if you are interested. I encourage each of you to take a look at the two enlarged ministry charts on the wall in this room and in front of the elevators. Thank you so much everyone who filled out the time and talent portion of the stewardship form -- for those of you who have not done so, please do take a look and consider where you might use you gifts for ministry in this community. I encourage everyone to look these ministries over -- does something intrigue you? Is there something listed that you didn't know about?

I also encourage you, in the coming months, to watch for continuing liturgical renewal at the Cathedral. At specifically appointed periods during the year, each liturgical ministry, beginning with our brand new Guild of Vergers will receive special attention including recruitment and training. We are especially excited about weaving more and more of our younger members into these rolls.

I would like to extend my gratitude to all of you, to Dean Mike Kinman and Chapter; to the clergy and lay staff of Christ Church Cathedral and especially to those who have stepped down from leadership positions this past year. If you are here, please stand.

A round of applause!

Grace and peace to you. Please know that I hold each and every one of you in prayer as we being another year working together in Jesus’s name. Thank you.

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