Dear Friends of the Diocese of Washington,
I write to you in light of Dean Gary Hall’s announcement that he intends to retire as dean of Washington National Cathedral on December 31, 2015. I received this news with both sadness and gratitude. I am saddened that Gary, who has become a friend and close colleague is leaving. I am grateful for all that he has brought to our life in the past three years.
Here you will find Dean Hall’s resignation letter, and the letter that the president of the Cathedral Chapter, Mr. David Kautter, and I wrote in response. Please join me in thanking Dean Hall for his ministry and praying blessings upon him and his wife, Kathy, as they enter retirement. Thankfully, his retirement will include an ongoing relationship with the Cathedral and with all of us.
I have spoken with Presiding Bishop Katharine Jefferts-Schori and Presiding Bishop-elect Michael Curry and they both assured me of their prayers and support. Bishop Curry said that he hopes that during this transition the Cathedral will continue its efforts to deepen ties of common witness and ministry with the Diocese of Washington. That is my prayer.
I have also spoken with the leaders of Diocesan Council and the Standing Committee, and informed them that from January 1, 2016 until a new dean is seated, I will be serving as interim dean. They were unanimous in their support of this decision and in their resolve to pray for and support our Cathedral in this time of transition. I am grateful for their leadership and faithfulness.
The Rev. Stephanie Nagley of the Standing Committee suggested that we invite all congregations to pray for the Cathedral during this leadership transition. I am grateful for her suggestion, mindful of the fact that many of our congregations are also experiencing transition themselves. So as you read or offer this prayer, know that I continue to pray for all of you, and for all of us together as we strive to love and serve Christ in our time.
Please pray for Dean Hall and his wife, Kathy; for the leadership of Washington National Cathedral.
We pray for the staff, clergy and people of our Cathedral as they go through this transition of leadership. We give thanks for the ministry of Dean Gary Hall, and his courage in giving his voice to kingdom justice. We pray for Bishop Mariann and for the search committee called to serve in this time of opportunity and challenge. Lord, hear our prayer.
(Response) And may we allow the Spirit to guide us with love and courage.
The Rt. Rev. Mariann Edgar Budde
Bishop of Washington