Today on the sixth anniversary of my ordination I’m grateful for meaningful work, and grateful also for all of those who have been my teachers along the way, beginning with the priests and pastors who were my models long before I found myself walking down that long path we call “the process.” 

I’m grateful for the people of my parish who supported and encouraged me as I pursued the dream, for the professors who shared their wisdom, for the friends who walked beside me in seminary. I’m grateful for those who stood with me on ordination day. 

I’m grateful for those mentors, ordained and lay, who knew what I was supposed to be doing before I did, and who gently directed me, and for those who taught me simply by the way they received my ministry. 

I’m grateful to my family for their support and patience especially over these past 10 years or so. 

This part of the journey has been shorter that I thought it would be, but rich enough for a lifetime of grateful prayers. 

Now I’m looking forward not only to having more time for my family after March 1, but also to discovering what the next phase of this adventure will bring, because leaving parish ministry doesn’t by any means imply that I’m done. But I have to admit to some anxiety going forward, and I’ll say that I’m grateful for those I know will be there with me, continuing to help me find the way.