Categories: Rector's Corner

Summer Sabbatical

Sari Ateek
Sari Ateek, Rector

This coming September marks seven years for me as your rector. I count my blessings daily for the gift of being able to serve such an open-minded, inclusive, compassionate and caring faith community, and look forward to our joint ministry in the coming years.

This summer (June 5-September 5), I will be going away on Sabbatical. Derived from the word “Sabbath,” a Sabbatical is typically taken in the seventh year and is intended to provide the rector with enough distance from his/her day-to-day responsibilities in order to cultivate a renewed sense of mission, purpose, and direction for his/her ministry. Typically, this is achieved through study, rest, spiritual renewal, and mission re-alignment, so that the rector can return and contribute even more fully and energetically to the ministry and mission of the church.

These three months will be for me primarily a time of study and travel. My studies will take place at Virginia Theological Seminary as I continue in my doctoral program (DMin), and my travels will take me to two places: Italy and Thailand. The first is a life-long dream deeply connected to my interest in the history of The Church in the West, and the second (a family trip) is my attempt to branch out to a continent I’ve never been to, and to engage a world religion that I have a growing interest in studying – Buddhism.

The length of a Sabbatical for the rector of St. John’s is historically a generous six months. I have chosen to only take 3 months at this time and will explore with the vestry the best way to approach the remainder of the Sabbatical leave in the future.

I am currently working with your church leadership to plan for my absence, including an amazing line-up of guest preachers who you will not want to miss. In the coming weeks, I will be providing you with more information on the logistics of St. John’s in my absence.

Thank you for the ways in which you invest in me, and as always, I welcome your prayers for me and for the work and ministry of our church.

Grace and Peace,

Sari Ateek
Sari Ateek

The Rev. Sari Ateek is the rector of St. John's. One of the many gifts Sari brings to the church is his conversational preaching style.