Message from the Minister
Welcome to Grace United Church, Burlington!
I am privileged to serve this relatively new, active and vibrant congregation as their Intentional Interim Minister until June 30, 2022. Interim Ministry is intended to be a journey, an intentional letting go of the past, an embracing of a new reality, and dreaming forward.
If you visit our sanctuary, you will see a pair of old, worn snowshoes resting at the front. These snowshoes are a symbol of interim ministry reminding us that we are on a journey. Being old and used the snowshoes suggest they carry some memories and traditions from the past. The wood in the frame has been heated to be flexible, but then cooled to be strong and sturdy as needed. The mesh forms a web reminding us that building a community involves many connections and interactions. For some snowshoes are for work, for others they are for play, and church done right can be both. Walking in snowshoes is always awkward at first, but with time our legs get used to the strange stance, likewise Interim Ministry is not always comfortable, sometimes it’s awkward and challenging, but with time one usually sees the merit of the tool. Most of us have had the experience of trying to trudge through deep snow. Sometimes getting from A to B can be difficult as each step sinks into the snow, and it feels more like wading than walking. Snowshoes are a tool that help us walk more easily along our journey when the way is deep. Interim Ministry likewise is a tool for churches when along the journey the way is deep and challenging. It’s not that the shoes allow us to avoid the journey, rather they make it less taxing. Eventually we come to know snowshoes are only for a particular season and once the winter turns to spring, walking in them is unnecessarily taxing and it makes sense to take them off. Likewise, Interim Ministry is for a designated time, and there is an appropriate time for it to end, and a new season of church life start. The congregation presently has a Search Team hard at work with the task of finding a minister to take Grace United into the next chapter of life. In the next few months the ending of the Intentional Interim ministry and a new beginning will be in sight.
During our time together the congregation has chosen the name Grace and is living into that name. At Grace United, we hope to be a source of grace to each other and the community surrounding us. We hope to live out of the abundance of God’s love. During the interim time we have identified and are living into the core values of kindness, fellowship, spiritual growth, acts of service, leadership, and inclusivity, encapsulated in the guiding principle “belonging, learning and connecting in Grace.”
This is a church with open arms and open hearts where we attempt to live out Christ’s call to live fully, love extravagantly and become all that God created us to be. I invite you to join us in whatever way feels right for you.
Blessings for the journey