A Message from Hal: Mark and Leigh Ann’s New Call

At the May 14 meeting, Mark informed our Session that he and Leigh Ann had received an invitation to join Navigators Ministry (See Mark’s article on page 1), and that they planned to accept their call. The Session then asked the Administration Team to work with Mark to recommend a pastoral transition plan and bring it back to the Session in June. Elders Bill McDowell, Dennis Glasser, and I met with Mark and agreed upon a recommended transition plan.

On June 11 the Session unanimously approved a pastoral transition plan to recommend at a congregational meeting on Sunday, July 21 at 9:45AM in the Sanctuary.

The Session agreed that we want to celebrate the good work that Mark and Leigh Ann have done among us and give them a good launch into their new call. The plan we developed affirms their rich ministry and provides for a time of transition into their work with Navigators. Below is the recommendation that the Session making to the congregation for approval:

Mark would continue his duties as associate pastor through September 30, 2013. We would provide two months Sabbatical/paid leave (October and November) so that they could devote full time to fundraising. (Our presbytery ministerial ethics prohibit pastors’ asking for financial support among members at the same time they are serving as pastors. After September 30 they would be free to raise support. While serving they could communicate their plans in a general, public way, and speak to groups within Covenant if invited. After November 30, they could make a request to be mission partners with Covenant.) During October and November we would pay salary, employer’s share of Social Security, medical insurance and pension. We would contribute December’s salary only of $4555 to Navigators for support of their ministry.

This schedule would allow us to begin the process of electing an Associate Pastor Search Team by November. The Session will investigate interim pastoral help as we plan for the new year.

There will be an informational meeting on Thursday, July 18 at 12 PM Noon in the Chapel. Administration Team Elders and I will be available to answer any questions.

I hope you will lift the Looyengas (Mark, Leigh Ann, Caleb, Evan and Carrie Ann) in prayer as they prepare for a new season of ministry.