Our Redeemer's Blog

Transition Team Updates

August 7, 2022

Your Input is Requested!
Our Redeemer’s Lutheran Church Transition Team would like your help.

As part of the transition process and in preparation for establishing a call committee, the Transition Team needs your input to effectively develop a Congregational Ministry Site Profile (MSP).

Please share your thoughts and perspectives by filling out a questionnaire LINK so we have the widest and fullest picture to work with. Whatever you are able to offer will be helpful. Thank you!
(Note: Hard copies of the questionnaire are also available at the church.)

 

July 1, 2022

A Letter from Pastor David:

I am delighted to join this amazing community at Our Redeemer’s during this transition journey!! 

Let me introduce myself, and share what I’ll be up to among you. My wife and I moved to the area in 2015, from the Twin Cities, where she began her call as pastor at St. Matthews Lutheran Church, Renton (yes, the same congregation pastor Gretchen came from a few years back, how cool is that?!), and where I began serving at the synod office. We have two children, Derek and Grace; our son will be a senior at California Lutheran University, is on the golf team and is studying music production; after high school our daughter decided to work at a piercing shop, is loving her social life with friends at UW, and especially enjoying the money she’s saving from her fantastic tips. Personally, I enjoy hot yoga, working out, getting my steps in, listening to beautiful music, and thoughtful conversations. I will be offering three areas of leadership among you: 1) facilitating the transition process, 2) assisting pastor Gretchen with worship leadership by preaching twice a month, and, 3) partnering with the adult education team. 

Currently we are in the process of gathering the transition team, and will be meeting for the first time in July. This meeting will involve getting some clarity, and scope of what is involved in the transition process. 

The gist of it involves taking some time to really listen well to where you are as a congregation, your hopes, expectations and dreams, and with a lens to listening to what future God is leading you to engage together as God’s people. 

This is, as I understand it, discernment work. I have invited the transition team to consider this task as more than merely a volunteer opportunity, but a ministry of the congregation. Discernment is also more than decision making work; it is a spiritual formation process whereby we attend patiently and audaciously to what God is up to among us, who then begins to form us in God’s preferred future. 

So, no matter who you are, and where you are able to be involved during this transition process, I would invite you to imagine yourself a part of this ministry, and discernment process. Within a short time, the transition team will be pulling together focus groups to begin listening and taking notes on a variety of emphases yet to be determined. This is an open-ended process, one of discovery, which means we don’t know yet what we will hear bubbling up among us. The only confidence we do have is the trust that God is already among you, waiting to be heard with more clarity about where you are now, and what kind of leadership and sustainability structure supports your emerging future.

On my end, I will keep you in my prayers as I get to know you better. Please don’t hesitate to introduce yourself to me! 

When I facilitate the transition team I will continually ask the God questions:
what is God up to? what do you hear God saying among us? What partnerships do you hear God calling us into? Where do you hear God’s future emerging in light of who you are? 

When I lead worship, I will preach the challenging, and liberating, love Gospel of Jesus Christ, hoping to enlarge our imaginations for where God is blowing among us. And when I participation in some learning time with ya’ll, I trust we will be able to engage in some thoughtful reflection as a necessary part of discernment. 

To God be the glory for this transition time!

 

June 1, 2022

Welcome Our Transition Facilitator!

Exciting news! We have signed a Letter of Agreement with Rev. Dr. David Hahn of Renton, WA to be our Transition Facilitator. David is a pastor and teacher who most recently has served as the Assistant to the Bishop for Director of Formation and Learning. He’s an avid scholar, musician, and advocate for social justice who enjoys conversations and seeing the movement of God’s spirit in the world.

We are still working to develop our transition team, but have great folks from our congregation praying about it. 

Contact Pastor David: pastordavid@ourredeemers.net.

 

April 21, 2022

View a video update by Pastor Gretchen and learn how you can be a part of the transition.
https://youtu.be/MAsInQ2kZNk

 

April 1, 2022

In March, Pastor Gretchen Mertes, Parish Administrator Karie Stearns and members of our Church Council’s executive team met with Bishop Shelley Bryan Wee and Assistant to the Bishop, Andy Yee, to discuss our staffing situation and upcoming transition process. In the next 6-8 weeks, the synod will be providing us a transition guide (which may or may not be an ordained person but will be trained in this specific ministry)  The transition guide will lead us through a discernment process of what is next for us as a congregation in mission, call, and leadership. In the meantime, our council will appoint a transition team of 6-8 people in the next few weeks to work directly with the transition guide to help us navigate this time. Their work will culminate in a Ministry Site Profile, a document that describes Our Redeemer’s to prospective rostered ministers pursuing a call in our area. This process is not regimented on a timeline, and will take as long as it takes, and will rely on congregation input in a variety of ways. The more diligent we are, the faster it will move forward.

Separately, we have requested additional pastoral support for Pastor Gretchen from the synod in regard to preaching, adult forums, and some pastoral care during the interim. It may be a few months until this person is in place so we have taken it upon ourselves to find supply preachers at least through May. Pastor Gretchen is feeling very well attended to and supported so far, and is grateful for all your care and concern. 

According to the pastor, “The best thing you can do for me, and for the congregation, is to participate fully in the transition process, and stay active and involved in worship and congregational life.”  

Video Update 3-21-2022: Pastor Gretchen Mertes gives the first bi-weekly update of our Pastor transition planning process, Part 1.