From the Catechism of the Book of Common Prayer, page 855.
Q. What is the ministry of the laity?
A. The ministry of lay persons is to represent Christ and his Church; to bear witness to him wherever they may be and, according to the gifts given them, to carry on Christ’s work of reconciliation in the world; and to take their place in the life, worship, and governance of the Church.
Very soon, members of the vestry nominating committee will begin the work of establishing a slate of candidates for election to the vestry. Episcopalians value lay leadership and consider the service of lay members to be at least as of equal importance to that of the clergy. One could fairly say that lay leadership is more important since most church leadership is provided by the laity. As Episcopalians we believe that everyone has been gifted to serve in the mission of God in the world and part of that service is to take our places in the governance of the church. Serving on the vestry is one of the most important and sacred ways that a lay person can represent Christ and his Church. If you were to ask recent past members of the vestry and those currently serving as vestry members about their experiences, I think you would hear them say that the ministry of a vestry person is firstly a spiritual and formative experience, a chance to grow in fellowship with others, and then that it is about the administration of church business.
While not all churches can claim this, we are blessed to have a healthy and vital vestry to go along with a healthy and vital parish. Now is a great time to serve. I invite all members of the parish to prayerfully consider standing for election to the vestry. I know that not all those who stand for election will be elected but your faithfulness in making yourself available is appreciated by the whole church and is a great witness to your willingness to be a servant to the servants of God. Please contact members of our vestry senior class - Deanna Dubose, Chuck Van Gorder, and Elmer Wilson - to let them know you would like to stand for election.
Grace and peace to all,