As The Gathering of Leaders Enews lands in your inbox each one of us is squaring up to celebrate the fourth Sunday of Advent. I wonder then, where this finds you. Are you in a place of hopeful anticipation, head full of glorious images of bears and cows grazing peacefully? Are the desert roses blooming where you are? The streams bursting their banks? Or are you dealing with a brood of vipers? Because let’s not forget: though we are a community of church leaders, we are people too, all with our individual struggles come Christmastime. Combined with the many and simultaneous crises in our world it’s no wonder some of us are really struggling to find that Christmas magic this year – and it’s so important to say that none of us are alone.
As GOL moves into 2023 we have some really exciting new plans in the works including more Gatherings for bi-vocational and lay leaders. Though I’m not ready to spill all the tea at the moment, I will say that these plans are a signal of one thing: HOPE. As our mission statement reads, “We envision the renewal of the dioceses and congregations of the Episcopal Church through transformational leaders…” we are all about hope in 2023, and as we hurtle into a new year we are still committed to showing up for the Church and for one another.
For this December issue I’ve curated many resources that are hope focused and I commend them to you. I also wish you a blessed Advent, a very Merry Christmas, and a hopeful 2023 on behalf of The Gathering of Leaders.
Mtr. Alicia Hager – Communication & Community Curator