We are in Advent

Let nothing disturb you,
let nothing startle you.
All things pass; God never changes.
Patience wins all it seeks.
Whoever has God lacks nothing:
God alone is enough.

~Teresa of Ávila

On August 2nd, All Souls sent our founding pastor, Winn Collier and his family, to a new place of ministry at Western Theological Seminary in Holland, Michigan (you may read Winn’s letter to All Souls). During the summer we have been in the early process of transitioning to a new season as a community.

First, you should know that the elders have entered into a covenant with each other to carry out this transition and search. You can find the covenant here. Second, the elders have crafted a profile of our community that we will share with prospective pastors as a description of who we are. That profile is here. We encourage you to read both documents. 

The elders also have a few highlights to share about the process: 

  • Elders have been gathering regularly to create structure and milestones around the transition process and will continue to do so.
  • Elders have invited a group of individuals within and alongside All Souls to be praying for our community and this process.
  • Elders have met with two national church leaders who know and love All Souls (Chris Backert, Director of the Ecclesia Network and John Chandler, former All Souls founding elder and Director of Uptick) for guidance and wisdom, and they will continue to work with the elders as needed
  • Elders will utilize this summer to confirm milestones for the transition and search for our new pastor
  • Brendan will serve as a leader to the staff during the interim process
  • Upon the Colliers’ departure in August, we will host a series of diverse voices to speak to us on Sundays
  • Even with the pandemic, we are eager to create space during this time as a community to connect with each other as we journey through this transition and continue into the next season of All Souls.

 

Preaching and Pastoral Care

With Winn’s final Sunday on August 2nd, we are now in a moment in our church’s story in between pastors. Brendan and the elders have spent a good amount of time creating a structure of preaching and pastoral care for this season that reflects the heart of our community. This time will offer an opportunity for us to regularly hear from individuals both inside and outside of our community. God has been so faithful. We are excited to share more details with you.

We have specifically invited three outside-of-All Souls individuals to spend some time with us during this season. Though they are not a permanent fixture within our community, they both know us and care deeply for us.

Cherith Nordling will be serving as our Theologian in Residence for the next six months, beginning this month. Cherith, a professor of theology, was planning on leading our ultimately-cancelled All Souls retreat this year but was able to speak to our community earlier this summer. As a Theologian in Residence, she will preach regularly, will engage with the elders and staff, and will support Brendan in the ongoing care of our
community. Along with these things, Cherith will also be writing a book during these months, a Shalom work that she would like to involve us in! More to come on that opportunity.

Ray Aldred will also be sharing with us over the fall, preaching on a handful of Sundays. Ray led our All Souls retreat in 2019 and spoke during the worship service that followed that weekend. Ray is status Cree from Treaty 8 land in Northern Alberta. He has served as a pastor and is currently the director of the Indigenous Studies Program at the Vancouver School of Theology, a program that trains indigenous leaders for the
indigenous church. 

We have also invited David Bailey, who led a cohort last year with us on Race and Reconciliation, to preach this fall. He is the director of Arrabon, a ministry that exists to equip the Church to engage in reconciliation. David is one of the nation’s leading voices in this area. 

And as many of you know, we are blessed to have among us in the All Souls community a number of ordained folks. In addition to hearing from Brendan regularly, about once per month we will hear from one of our own, including Nichole Flores, Evan Hansen, Jerry King, and Adriana Nicholson.

God has been so very faithful to our All Souls community during this season. The elders are so very grateful for these beautiful people who will be walking with us and loving us in these coming weeks.

 

Transition Benchmarks

Early Summer | community discussion about pastoral search and interim period (Colliers depart August 3rd)

Late Summer | search commences

Fall/Winter | candidate list narrowed and interviews begin

Late Spring | expected start for next pastor 

 

Transition Documents

Winn’s Letter to All Souls

Elders Covenant

All Souls Profile