Everliving God, whose will it is that all should come to you through your Son Jesus Christ: Inspire our witness to him, that all may know the power of his forgiveness and the hope of his resurrection; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.
Dear Members and Friends of the Congregation of Saint Saviour,
It gives us great pleasure to report that at its Tuesday, April 10th meeting, the Vestry unanimously endorsed the selection of The Reverend Deacon Steven Yong Lee to serve as our Congregation's new Vicar. We offer him a warm welcome in his new role among us and we wish him many years of joyful ministry. The vestry further pledges its support in the building and maintenance of a thriving Christian community at the Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine.
Some Recent History
The Reverend Canon Vicki Sirota, our last vicar, left nearly two years ago in May, 2016. Dean Jim Kowalski named an interim vicar and brought in a consultant to help the congregation do a self-study which would help him understand our aspirations for a permanent vicar. The process came to a halt a few months later when the Dean left on sabbatical and then retired. When the interim vicar left earlier than expected, the new Interim Dean, the Right Reverend Clifton Daniel III (“Dean Dan”) met with the vestry in December, 2017 to discuss hiring a permanent vicar for us. The choice is actually the Bishop’s, but the work of finding the right person is and has always been given over to the Dean. If we had restarted the original search process, our Congregation would have had to wait at least another year before a new, permanent Vicar was in place. So, with our self-study in-hand, and his growing familiarity with the Congregation, the Dean began his search.
At the same time Steven Lee was quietly making his mark in our community. He gave an excellent retreat at Holy Cross monastery while still in seminary, worked closely with families and children, preached excellent sermons, and assisted and advised the wardens to help us keep the community positive and looking ahead. After interviewing two other candidates, the Dean came to the conclusion that Steven was the right person for the position. He works comfortably with the Chapter and already knows many members of the congregation. He is familiar with the special polity of the Cathedral and its worshipping community, which is often a difficult thing for new clergy to understand.
Vestry Discussion and Endorsement
The Dean and the Sub Dean Patrick Malloy attended the April 10 Vestry meeting to present Steven. The Vestry peppered Steven with many questions. In classic New York fashion, the questions were direct and frank. Steven spoke about how he saw his new role, emphasizing the need for working together to strengthen the congregation through an abundance of love and of prayer. After the clergy departed, the vestry had a heartfelt and open discussion before taking a vote to endorse the appointment. With all 14 vestry members present, the vote was unanimous.
It falls to all of us to do the hard and happy work of building our community; now at last we are joined in that effort by a permanent vicar. Welcome Steven!
Marsha Ra & Tim Dwyer, Wardens