March 2023 Pastor’s Blog

March 2023 Pastor’s Blog

Dear Reformation,

2023 is already off to an incredible start here with so much to look forward to in the months ahead. One thing I am personally looking forward to is my sabbatical this summer.

Reformation’s Human Resource Policy provides for clergy under call at Reformation to take up to three months of sabbatical after serving for 7 years at Reformation. (Believe it or not, I will be marking my 10th anniversary under call at Reformation this December!)

I am grateful for this policy, the way it recognizes the complexities of ordained ministry, and provides for this time to reenergize. Clergy are continuously among the professions with the highest rates of turnover – with a large number of people leaving professional ministry permanently every year. Reformation’s policy recognizes the work of clergy and supports us in incredible ways. (Thank you, Reformation!)

I am sure you have questions about what this sabbatical means and I am open to conversation at any time! In the meantime, here are some “Frequently Asked Questions” and answers.

What is a sabbatical?
A sabbatical is an intentional time away from a position for rejuvenation. It is not a vacation. A sabbatical has a plan for personal or professional development.

When will you be on sabbatical?
I will start my sabbatical on Memorial Day and end on Labor Day. I intentionally chose summer as it has a lighter programmatic schedule at Reformation.

What will you be doing?
I have several plans for my sabbatical. The first, and biggest, is writing my Doctor of Ministry thesis. I hope to graduate with my degree in May of 2024 and this is the final requirement. I will also be visiting other congregations on the east coast that are similar size and style of Reformation to learn “best practices” to bring back.

How can we support Reformation while you’re on sabbatical?
Continue doing what you do! Life and ministry are so full and abundant here at Reformation because of the ways you show up to live out our mission at all times! This summer will undoubtably be filled with opportunities to learn and serve together. Your participation is just as important now as ever and will help to support the rest of the staff during this time.

We are so fortunate to have Pastor Eileen, with her gifts and abilities, here as she leads our ministry over the summer, but she will only be able to do so much. Continue to pray for her and ask her how you can best support her.

I will miss you all deeply over these summer months. It is a gift and privilege to be one of your pastors and I will miss the ways we share life together during this time. But know that I appreciate, more deeply than I can express, the opportunity to take this time. I know I will come back even more excited for the future we are being called to together.

Pastor Alina