A Word from DS Rev. Dr. Marcus Freeman – 11/02/23

Greetings Capital District Colleagues and Friends,

We recently engaged an onboarding program in the Capital District to assist us in getting to know one another as I begin my time of service in the Capital District. The experience reminds me of the boarding process during times I have travelled by air. You may recall that the process includes verifying tickets, checking luggage, identification and security checks, receiving boarding passes, verifying departure times, ensuring that we are in the correct seat, on the correct plane, to the correct destination. These are all components of a complex and engaging system of onboarding planes for air flight. But once you are seated and the journey begins, flying is an efficient alternative for reaching our destinations.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank the clergy and leaders of the Capital District who were able to participate in any of the components of the onboarding process that was facilitated by Melissa Wiginton and culminated during our gathering at Austin Seminary.  It was an engaging process that achieved its purpose of accelerating our acquaintances as I have begun in my new role of service in the Capital District. The experience allowed for the collective voices of essential leaders of the District to express hopes and dreams for how we will walk together in ministry for the season that we currently hold, and I believe we are off to a better start as a result.

After reflecting upon what we heard from you, we have decided to plan a District Professionals gathering as a working session with the purpose to follow up and further process the ideas and possibilities that emerged from our onboarding experience. We have planned to get together on Tuesday, December 4, 2023, from 9:30 am – 12:00 noon at Violet Crown City United Methodist Church, located at 1300 Morrow St. in Austin.

We feel that this follow up session will allow us to further process what we heard during the onboarding process. We actually heard a desire for stronger relationships among our clergy and for a focus or vision for this near future. So when we gather this time, we will work on a theme that we feel to be emerging from this expressed desire, and we will process the thematic focus that we agree upon to shape some simple and achievable plans for the next two years. We are thankful that Melissa Wiginton has agreed to return and share her expertise to facilitate our work together. We hope to be good stewards of our time for this task and we will culminate with worship that will be led by Rev. Jay Cooper, our gracious host pastor.

This feels like a great opportunity to enhance our connection in the Capital District. Your presence and participation will make the experience richer and more meaningful for all. We certainly hope that you can be there.

In the meantime, may our Lord continue to bless and sustain each of us and our ministries and service in every way.

Most Sincerely,