Newsletter, Issue #17

St. John's Episcopal Church Newsletter

Issue: #17

Rector Margie Shaw announces retirement at Annual Meeting

August 10, 2014

Dear Parish Family and Friends,

During this past year the still small voice at the core of my being has been telling me to think about retiring. Now, at 67, I truly believe it is time and thus today, I am announcing my intent to retire this fall, sometime between October 1st and November 1st.

St. John's is in excellent shape both financially and spiritually. Our pledge support will continue to provide the salary for a full time priest. Because of a successful Capital Campaign, the church and the rectory have been well taken care of. Worship services are well attended, and in addition, we have strong adult education, outreach, and music programs.

I believe St. John's will be an attractive and inviting place for many priests to consider. This is one of the reasons I want to leave this fall. Although I am very healthy, I know my energy is not what it once was and I do not want the energy of the parish to dwindle as mine does. In the long run, I believe my decision to leave "on a high note" will be good for the parish as well as for me.

I have informed both Bishops Love and Ely about my decision and I believe they will be helpful and supportive of St. John's as you look for a new rector. Bill Finucane and Jon McBride will work together to form a search committee.

This has not been an easy decision, nor did I make it quickly. I will leave a very big part of my heart with you, as I take many wonderful memories with me.

In Christ's love and peace,
Margie Shaw+

Letter from the Vestry

It was a sad ending to the annual meeting on August 10th when Margie read the above letter. There were lots of tears and hugs and sorrow that we were losing our spiritual leader. That said, we clearly understand her rationale for retirement and sincerely wish her the best.

Margie has decided that her last day celebrating and preaching at St. John's will be September 28 and that she will move out of the rectory shortly thereafter. We are going to have a party for her that evening from 5-7pm. Dick and Debbie Walker have graciously offered their house at 35 Braidlea Farm Way for the party. Everyone who can join us is welcome and we encourage you to come help us send Margie off with lots of love and fellowship. We will also be collecting a "purse" for Margie and if you would like to contribute please send (or discreetly deliver) a check to the office with "Margie's gift" in the memo line prior to September 27th.

Father Rick Dennis has happily agreed to return to St. John's as the primary supply priest while we search for Margie's replacement. What a pleasure it was for me when Rick said, "I would be delighted! I love the people of St. John's and I love to worship with them!"

Bill Finucane and Jon McBride will be leading the search process, although the vestry as a whole will make the final decision. Helping Bill and Jon on the search committee are Darcey Hale, Brian Houseal, Patty Paine and Debbie Walker. Many thanks to all of them for shepherding this very important process.

The search committee will hold a parish meeting on September 7 during coffee hour to get input from everyone on what we are looking for in our next rector. While this would normally happen after Margie has left, we realize that our seasonal parishioners start to leave after Labor Day and wanted to include as many of you as possible. Margie will not be at this meeting. If you cannot attend, please feel free to send an email to Bill Finucane ( or Jon McBride ( with your input. They have several guideline questions that they can send you if you would like to participate electronically.

At some point in the future, we will have Beth Strickland, the Albany diocesan deployment officer, join us for worship followed by a meeting with the vestry and the search committee to discuss the process. This is currently being scheduled.

In addition, we have a late-September retreat planned with the vestry and the search committee to continue developing our parish profile and move toward consensus concerning what we are looking for in our next rector.

Bill Finucane, as Junior Warden, and I, as Senior Warden, have agreed on a division of labor between us. He with Jon will lead the search process. I, with the rest of the vestry, will keep the church functioning smoothly. Please let us know anything you think we are missing or anything you would like to do to help. As Margie said in a sermon a week or so ago, we need to all stay in the boat and row together. We also need to remember to let the Holy Spirit guide us through this process. Thank you for your help.

I apologize for the length of this note but I wanted to start the process of keeping you informed of our initiatives at the outset of this important time of transition.

Scottie Ginn and the Vestry

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