NEW RECTOR ANNOUNCEMENT
I can now announce our new rector is the Reverend Ian Lasch.
Ian has written a wonderful letter of introduction, see below. and includes much more information. Ian will be starting with us on August 01.
This is very exciting for the Saint Francis family!
Mike Rowland, Sr. Warden
Dear People of God at St. Francis of the Islands,
I am thrilled to be writing you as the next Rector of St. Francis. I can’t wait to meet you all, to get to know you, and to explore the future that God has planned for us together.
I feel a little bit like coming to St. Francis is like coming home. Your search committee and vestry have certainly made me feel right at home, and in a fun coincidence, I grew up at another St. Francis (a United Methodist Church in Charlotte, North Carolina). My mother-in-law lives about a mile from the church building, and I had my candidacy interviews prior to ordination in St. Francis’s education wing.
A bit of background about me: I was born and raised in Charlotte, and my parents still live close by, in North and South Carolina. I joined the Army straight out of high school and served as an Arabic translator for five years in the Army and then another seven as a civilian contractor with the Army and Air Force. In the military, I was stationed in Augusta, where I lived for a decade and met my wife Loren. It was in Augusta, and the Diocese of Georgia, that I came to the Episcopal Church and eventually discerned a call to the priesthood. I attended Virginia Theological Seminary (class of 2016), and was ordained a deacon at St. Paul’s in Savannah before moving following graduation to serve as Associate Rector of St. Peter’s Episcopal Church in Ladue, Missouri. For the past two years I’ve had the pleasure of serving as the Rector of Grace Episcopal Church in Jefferson City, Missouri. I believe strongly in the threefold role of the priesthood as pastor, priest, and teacher, and I look forward to growing in faith as we are formed more fully together into the Body of Christ on Wilmington Island. I’m also a tremendous nerd, and an equally tremendous Cleveland sports fan.
My wife Loren will be serving as the Canon to the Ordinary for the Diocese of Georgia, a fact of which I am quite proud, and which will mean regular visits to other congregations. When not otherwise occupied, though, she looks forward to worshiping with us at St. Francis.
Loren and I have two sons: Elias (age five) and Ezra (who just turned three). Elias has one of the kindest hearts I’ve ever encountered, and Ezra is a cuddly force of nature (we compare him often to the Tasmanian Devil or Animal from the Muppet Show).
While these are strange times that we’re living in, I can’t tell you how excited my family and I are to get to know you all and to make St. Francis of the Islands our new home. I can’t wait to see what God has in store for us.
You have all been in my prayers throughout this search process, and I will continue to pray for you all as this time of transition continues. Stay well, and I look forward to seeing you all soon.
Grace and peace,