Regular readers of this newsletter will mostly be aware by now that Adam and I are expecting our second baby in March 2013. The St. James Pastoral Relations Committee and Consistory have already begun to prepare for this event. We want to be sure everyone is informed about the expectations, as this will be St. James UCC’s first experience of having a pastor take maternity leave! If you do have any questions, best place to start is the Pastoral Relations Committee, whose membership for 2013 will include Charlotte Fiedler, Jack Morris, Tony Nuccitelli, Ken Raspen, and Joy Rubeo.
At this time, we have started to address some of the logistical details. We expect a guest pastor to begin on 3/24, Palm Sunday (the week of the date), so that our regular Holy Week & Easter services and activities will run smoothly. We are planning for a maternity leave of 8 weeks total, but we are prepared to be flexible depending on potential health concerns as well as activities in the life of the congregation. Our intention is to covenant with one “substitute” pastor for the entire leave, who will lead worship every Sunday and will be available for pastoral care in case of any major crisis. Lay leaders of our congregation will assist in providing additional spiritual care.
On a more personal note, I would like to share that, while I am looking forward to the new baby, I am not a person who particularly enjoys being pregnant! I prefer to keep busy, with the same schedule and energy as when I am not pregnant. All tests indicate that the baby and I are very healthy. We will not find out the baby’s gender ahead of time, and the names we have chosen will be a surprise as well. No preference for a girl or a boy – any healthy baby will do! Otherwise, we are simply passing the weeks, very much looking forward to meeting our new infant and especially to bringing him or her to church to meet his or her church family.