As we have completed the first week of the Advent season we hold on to the promise of the coming of God’s Kingdom. Sense the anticipation and hold on to the hope, grace and love revealed through God’s Son! Come Lord Jesus!
Now to the burning question upon the minds of St. David’s family. Who is this large stranger that has been appointed the Intentional Interim Priest in Charge? 2) What is an Intentional Interim Priest?
I am a minister of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. I was ordained in 1983 (You can do the math!). The youngest of three children to a Lutheran pastor and his wife, we were raised near Pittsburgh, Penn. I graduated from Thiel College with a BA and the Lutheran Theological Seminary at Gettysburg, Penn., with an MDiv.
I have served congregations and a long- term care facility in northwestern Pennsylvania, upstate New York and western Michigan. My father’s witness as a minister of Christ and his work with other faith communities filled me with the desire/joy to work in ecumenical settings. In addition to my call to the Lutheran Church, I have had the amazing opportunity to serve United Methodist, United Church of Christ, Presbyterian and Episcopal churches during my life-time.I have a passion for leading worship, preaching, teaching and equipping lay ministers to serve Christ in their respective communities.
Accomplishments include receiving a certificate of Enology (winemaking) from Missouri State University. I have medaled in several amateur regional, state and national winemaking competitions. I am a certified Intentional Interim Pastor/Priest and recently won a hymn writing competition sponsored by the Association of Lutheran Church Musicians.I enjoy tinkering with old Lionel O Gauge tin type locomotives and getting them to run again. My wife, Judy and I live in Rockford, MI. Judy is a retired RN and accomplished artist. When she is not painting, she is designing glass Christmas ornament wreaths. Judy is a native of Buffalo, NY. I have two sons and two stepsons (Judy’s sons), a daughter in law, a future daughter in law and four grandsons!
So now you know a little about me. Let’s talk about the role of an Intentional Interim Priest.
An Intentional Interim Priest is essentially called to serve as the bridge between the former rector and the next rector to be called to the parish. This is a temporary position which lasts on average 18 to 24 months though the time can vary. The Intentional Interim Priest (IIP) provides continuity in all areas of parish life, including: worship, preaching, administration, visitation, teaching and counsel. Specific areas an IIP may address are: the feelings experienced by the congregation over the conclusion of the previous rector’s call; listening to members concerns, hopes and dreams for their church family; determining what areas of parish life needing to be maintained, lifted up, nurtured or perhaps discontinued; keeping all communications lines opened; maintaining a strong connection with the diocese, prepping the community for the inevitable changes that come with the call of a new rector; and work with the congregation, staff, vestry and the associate priest to promote the love of Christ within and without the community. Please note this is not a comprehensive list.
Of course, none of this can happen without the guidance of the Holy Spirit, the prayers and participation of the congregation and the desire to work with the whole people of God in the Lord’s vineyard.
I look forward to our time together as your Intentional Interim Priest in Charge. May God bless our journey together in the months to come. See you this Sunday!
Your Servant in Christ,
Father Dave +
The Rev. David M. Blank
Father Dave establishes office hours
Father Dave will be at the church Sunday through Wednesday.
Tentative Hours are:
Sundays: 8:30 a.m. – 1 p.m.
Mondays: 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Tuesdays: 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Wednesdays: 10 a.m. – 7 p.m.
Note these hours are subject to change.
If you would like to meet with Father Dave, it is recommended that you make an appointment. You can reach him via his cell: (814) 706-2222 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please do not attempt to leave a voice message via the church phone. The voice message system is currently down. We hope to have this situation remedied very soon!