Dear People’s people,

On February 15, I will be beginning a five month sabbatical. I am exhausted and eager to step away from ministry for a time. A year ago, I shared with you some plans for the sabbatical – such as taking a few classes or doing some family history research. The pandemic has put even those modest ambitions on hold. I will be spending most of my sabbatical supporting my elder child in remote-learning kindergarten, caring for my younger child, and spending time with my husband, who is working very reduced hours at the restaurant that employs him. I hope that this might still feel like a respite, at least some of the time.

How can you support me during my sabbatical? Give me space. I will be turning off my work cell number and not checking my work email for the duration of the sabbatical. I will limit my connection to People’s people on social media. When we run into each other out and about (which I hope is a real possibility in a few months!), let’s talk about things other than church.

I’ve been working hard in recent months to make sure that things will run smoothly in my absence. We have a lineup of great guest preachers and People’s people leading services. We have a stellar sabbatical pastoral care team in place, working in partnership with sabbatical pastoral care minister Barrett Lee. You can call them at 269-375-3262 ext. 11 (this is a voicemail account at the church) or care@peopleschurch.net. Diane Melvin will be acting as the church’s lead administrative officer in my absence, so please be in touch with her if issues arise that she can help you address.

I am tremendously grateful to all of the People’s people who are doing more over the next months so I can do less. I look forward to coming back to church this summer with more energy, enthusiasm, and ideas for our next phase together.

With gratitude,
Rev. Rachel

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