I am very pleased and excited to announce that we have called The Rev. Liz Embler to serve as St. Paul's new Associate for Congregational Development. Mother Liz brings a warm pastoral presence, strong preaching, and an impressive skill set to our staff. Her job will be to support the members of St. Paul's in living out your baptismal ministry of bearing witness to Christ wherever you may be, and carrying on Christ's work of reconciliation in the world. In particular, Mother Liz will be with us to share with me in proclaiming the Gospel, administering the sacraments, and blessing and declaring pardon in the name of God.
In addition to fulfilling the roles of pastor, priest, and teacher, the ministry of the Associate for Congregational Development will be to assist us in developing and maintaining systems of shared ministry within the congregation, including refining and enhancing our process for welcome and member incorporation. She will have the opportunity to work with me in planning out the program year for our Wednesday and Sunday worship and Christian formation programs, and will have many opportunities to teach. Together, we will continue to share with Debbie Waldmann, the chaplain of St. Paul's Episcopal School, in the duties of planning and leading chapel worship during the school year, as well as maintaining a healthy pastoral relationship with our school community. Mother Liz has extensive experience working with youth and young adults, so she will also be able to work with Natalie Csintyan, Director of Youth & Children's Formation, to advise in the ongoing development of formation for our young people.
Liz was with us to preach and serve at the altar with me yesterday, Sunday, April 23. You can hear her sermon here. Her first official Sunday at St. Paul's will be Sunday, June 4, the Day of Pentecost. Please join me in giving thanks to God for Mother Liz's presence among us!
You can read more about Liz in her own words below.
Hello St. Paul's! My name is Liz Embler and I am currently a senior seminarian at the School of Theology at the University of the South, Sewanee. I am from from the Diocese of East Tennessee and grew up in Knoxville, TN as a life-long Episcopalian. Prior to seminary, I graduated cum laude from Maryville College in Maryville, TN in 2010 with a Bachelor of Arts in International Studies, and a focus on Sub-Saharan Africa. From 2010-2012, I served in the Julian Year, a program of Episcopal Charities and Community Services and the Episcopal Service Corps, in Chicago, IL. I lived in intentional community and worked at Ravenswood Community Services at All Saints' Episcopal Church in Ravenswood as their Assistant Program Director. I also served as a hospital chaplain at the University of Tennessee Medical Center in Knoxville from 2013-2014.
As a student at Sewanee, I have served in numerous capacities at the seminary, but I am most proud of my involvement with the Haiti Summer Fellowship. As the first fellow, I traveled to Haiti twice in 2016 and worked to establish relationships between the seminary community and the outreach program at the college, the Episcopal seminary in Port au Prince, and the Episcopal Diocese of Haiti.
While at seminary, I met my future husband, the Rev. Robert Beazley, from the Diocese of Florida, who will also be serving in the Diocese of Louisiana, and we will be married on May 19, 2017 (a week after graduation!). I have loved my time at Sewanee with Robert, our dog Grover Cleveland, and our cat CJ Cregg, but I am looking forward to being at St. Paul's. I was ordained to the transitional diaconate on February 11, 2017 and will be ordained to the priesthood in August, 2017.
I love to be outside, learn new recipes, read, travel, and binge watch The West Wing. I am passionate about preaching, outreach ministries, youth and young adult ministries, and pastoral care. Robert and I are so excited to start our new life together in New Orleans with all of you!