Meet Our New Rector

The Rev. Sarah Stewart has responded to the Vestry's "call" to her to be St. Paul's next Rector.  The Vestry's decision and "call" was blessed by Bishop Marc Andrus and announced on July 17, 2022. 

You can learn more about Sarah--how she likes to be called-- and hearing from her directly by clicking on the links below:

a letter mailed to St. Paul's congregation on July 15th 

the announcement was made right after the Passing of the Peace just before the beginning of the Eucharist during the 10am service on July 17, 2022 

a video clip that Sarah has done for St. Paul's that we showed during the service

Briefly, here's a little about her background:

  • she's currently an Associate Rector for Young Adults and Innovation at All Saints' Church in Atlanta where in addition to what her title implies, she also helps, for example, with teen/youth ministry, outreach, pastoral care and starting and supporting  intergenerational groups and is a regular preacher and celebrant;

  • her prior Associate Rectorships have been in Wichita, Kansas and New York City;

  • like a few of our past Rectors and Interim Rectors, she's a graduate of Yale Divinity School

  • before feeling called to move from very active lay involvement at a Washington DC Episcopal Church to being ordained into the priesthood, she had a career for a decade as an Investment Advisor becoming a Vice-President early in her career.

 

Personal values and attributes were a part of what St. Paul's community identified last fall during the Congregational Conversations and Survey as important as experience in our next Rector.  During the Vestry's "visits" (interviews, small group discussions, conducting a service with a sermon coincidentally using the Mary and Martha gospel story that was part of today's service, leading an adult ed session, and informal opportunities for conversation with Vestry members), which took place over two days with each of the finalists recommended by the Search Committee, the Vestry experienced the following (plus more) in Sarah:

  • a deep spirituality freely shared with others,

  • a love of liturgy and preaching, 

  • compassion and empathy, 

  • joyfulness, 

  • a desire and experience in building collaborative relationships, and

  • her optimism about the future of churches and specifically the Episcopal Church in which she sees a unique blending of traditions and openness to considering new possibilities within those traditions.

 

Sarah is very much looking forward to getting to know and be part of St. Paul's community.  Her first services will be on Sunday, September 4 (Labor Day weekend), followed a week later (September 11) with an official welcome on our traditional regathering Sunday followed by a barbecue for everyone after 10am service.  

 

On behalf of St. Paul's Vestry,

 

Tish Busselle

Senior Warden