From the Priest Transition Team: Who We Are
Who We Are ￼Inscribed in bronze on a plaque outside our beautiful and historic building is found the community's motto, taken from Nehemiah. “The people had a mind to work.” Gethsemane Episcopal Church began with a handful of people in 1856, seeking to establish a worshiping community in the soon to be burgeoning city of Minneapolis. For over 150 years, Gethsemane has been sowing seeds of worship, community and justice. All people of every race, class, gender, sexual orientation, belief and those seeking to learn more in their faith journeys, are encouraged to experience and join our community. Through the Missional Assessment Process, we identified the following as our gifts and values: • Importance of Community • Justice (housing, food, economic) • Creative/Accessible Liturgy • Use of resources and assets
We gather in Christian community in order to dream, to plan, to work, to worship and to play – to expand God's kingdom on earth. Community matters because in our parish, we can and do approach each other in a way different from our relationships in a secular world. We evaluate ourselves, each other and our actions and aspirations in a Christian context. Since our parish is a voluntary association, it requires our choice and commitment to maintain, nurture and expand its presence in our lives. The success of mission and ministries revolving around justice issues, whether housing, food or economic, the effect of creative and accessible liturgy and worship experiences and the stewardship of our varied resources are strengthened by being in community. Justice Located in Downtown Minneapolis, Gethsemane's neighbors are as likely to be affluent as they are poor. Our closest neighbors live in transitional housing for the homeless, but just across the street are luxury apartments. Large corporations reside on the other side. We seek to be a beacon, loving our neighbors, creating connections and helping to bring about the City of God on Earth. We reach out to people in need with food, clothing, love and support, shelter and in many other ways. Through our food ministries, we are feeding souls, not just filling holes. By supplying space for youth sports practices, Sober Corps and others, we acknowledge our unity with our neighbors and look to meet their need from our abundance in anticipation that our needs will also be met.
We value creative, participative and accessible liturgy that provides space for questioning, welcoming and embracing viewpoints that expand our understanding of our relationship to the Divine. Our current liturgical practice includes a Rite I said Eucharist and a Rite II Eucharist with varied musical styles, including traditional choral music as well as contemporary musical offerings. There is a dedicated space for quiet play for children, a healing station located in our baptistry and hospitality after the service is also hosted in the worship space.
Resources and Assets
We value our buildings as a way to support ourselves in the context of our mission. Revenue generated from rental allows us to support our worship space and programs. We donate space to partners to help ￼￼￼the people in the surrounding area. Viewing our location as an asset, we seek to tap into downtown social service groups as partners. We look to collaborate with the neighborhood, artists, and organizers of all types to bring about the City of God on Earth. Our worship space is a beautiful and sacred place for liturgy and is also used used for concerts, meetings and other events. Because we have a engaged leadership group, we are looking for someone to partner with in mission and ministry, in an atmosphere of mutual respect and accountability. Some qualities we hope will be present in the leader we choose include:
• listens with an open mind • is a visionary thinker • relates to people of all ages, sorts and conditions • has a respectful and reverential presence in liturgy • appreciates and values varied musical styles • utilizes creative liturgies with a participatory style and drawing from many sources • builds consensus • is attentive to pastoral needs • is collaborative • has the will to build new relationships in the neighborhood • has an appetite and passion for ministry in a downtown setting
To restate the verse that has come to be Gethsemane's motto, “the people had a mind to work.” We look forward to exploring how you might join in that work with us.