I was surprised when I was greeted by name by Glenn Holliman of Episcopal Church Foundation as I walked into the lounge this afternoon. I was about 10 minutes early, and I seemed to be the first to arrive for the discussion of Fulfilling the Vision. Folding chairs for 20 or so people were set up in the lounge. Jane Little, moving slowly down the hall behind her walker, was behind me. As it happened, Jane and I were the only parishioners being interviewed in this particular session. Holliman made the educated guess that I wasn’t Jane Little.
Jane and I were each given a copy of a new document, a Tentative Case Statement. Neither of us read the four-page handout at St. Paul’s, but it is, in many respect, more helpful than the presentation made to parishioners last month. (The Tentative Case Statement does not seem to be on the church’s Web site. I made a PDF file from my copy and was planning to post it here. As I was checking over this post, however, I discovered the following notation on the bottom of the last page: “©2010 Episcopal Church Foundation. Do not copy without permission.” I’m not sure why the copyright is held by Episcopal Church Foundation and not St. Paul’s, and I’m not sure why there is concern about copying it. When I get an opportunity, I will ask if I can post it on the Web.) As it happens, Holliman did not reference the document during our discussion.
Our session was strictly limited to asking for our opinions. Holliman, who was both knowledgeable and friendly, asked specific questions and noted our answers on forms designed for the purpose. I suppose I talked too fast, as he asked me to slow down a couple of times for him to catch up on his note-taking.
I can’t speak for Jane—we haven’t discussed the experience—but I was reassured that parishioner voices will be heard. I don’t know what other parishioners are saying, but I said that I thought that more information about the proposed projects is needed, and that I did not think that St. Paul’s was ready to launch the campaign this fall. I suspect that I am not the only person who feels that way.
Update, 7/17/2010: I ran into Glenn Holliman this morning at church, where I had gone for Saturday Bible Study. He assured me that there was no reason not to post the Tentative Case Statement on the Web. Therefore, you can read the document here.
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