From the Vicar: “Dean things” still going on

Tomorrow I am off by train to Heidelberg.  I am going to participate, as Area Dean, in the interview of a candidate for the Chaplaincy in Heidelberg.  Heidelberg has been without a regular chaplain for some time, and I really hope that all goes well.  It is hard for a congregation to wait and wait and wait for a new priest to come to post.  They have been well supplied by visiting clergy, but it is not quite the same.  A new chaplain can bring vision and plans for the future, whereas supply priests just keep things going on.  It is the waiting that is hard.  But the people of the church in Heidelberg have been quite patient and life has continued during their time of waiting.  
So it will soon be with Stuttgart.  My last service will be 9 July.  After that time, our plethora of talented clergy will step forward and do whatever is needed while the congregation waits, and waits, and waits for the new chaplain to arrive.  How lucky we are to have the priests at hand who can assist during this time of transition.   Julie, Wolfgang, Brigitte, Solomon, Stephen, and Andrea, are all eligible to assist as Anglican clergy.  And then we have friends of other denominations who are also ready to jump into action should the situation require their help.  So much help…readily available.  It is a blessing.  
But, everyone, please be aware that there will still be a time of waiting.  Expect it.  These things do not happen quickly.  No one should be surprised if this process takes some months.  Or maybe longer.  There is no profit in rushing into something this important.  Take all the time you need to find the person who will do what you hope.  
You are probably not aware of it,…. but the time from when I first started applying for the opening in Stuttgart in 2005, to when I finally started work in June 2006, was over 9 months.  But from my point of view, and that of the congregations, the wait was worth it.  Very, very worth it!

Although my time as Area Dean will be coming to an end along with my pastorate here in Stuttgart, I have several trips yet to complete as Area Dean.  I will be out of town a bit on these mission trips:  1) Mission Trip to NWGermany 19-21 May;  2) Interview for a new priest in Heidelberg, 11 May; 3) Diocesan Synod in Cologne ( 29 May-2 June).  



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