The Rev. Anne-Marie Jeffery, incoming Canon for Congregational Vitality
I am delighted to announce that the Rev. Dr. Anne-Marie Jeffery will join the diocesan staff as Canon for Congregational Vitality beginning May 1.
Drawing on her expertise, experience, and adaptive leadership skills, Anne-Marie will serve as a senior member of diocesan staff, with primary responsibility for all strategic initiatives that promote vibrant, mission-driven, and spiritually mature congregations. She will engage in on-going resource development and supervise the staff members responsible for carrying out the three core initiatives of the diocesan strategic plan. She will also serve as a pastor and mentor to clergy and lay leaders.
This is something of a homecoming for Anne-Marie. She first discerned her call to the priesthood at Ascension, Gaithersburg in the early 2000s. After serving in a number of positions in this diocese, including as Interim Rector of St. Margaret’s, DC in 2010-2011, Anne-Marie was called to St. Peter’s, Perth Amboy, New Jersey, where she has served for the last ten years. Throughout her ministry, she has been a student and practitioner of congregational vitality and renewal, while deepening and expanding her coaching and mentoring skills. Congregational vitality is the driving passion of her ministry. The question she asks every parish she interacts with is, “What makes a congregation thrive?”
“I am excited to be returning to the Diocese of Washington,” Anne-Marie writes, “bringing my passion for the nurture and building up of congregations to the work that you are already doing. I believe my experience serving several different kinds of congregations for the past 17 years and my work with congregations in the Diocese of New Jersey will be a great asset in our work together.”
“While we all eagerly look to success stories in hopes of identifying the formula for congregational growth,” Anne-Marie continues, “I have learned there is no magic bullet. What makes each congregation thrive is individual to itself. My years of coaching have helped me develop the skills to support parishes in finding answers for themselves and assist them in taking the necessary steps to move into a new reality. Of course, walking alongside congregations yearning to thrive and grow isn’t possible without my own prayer life and pastoral support system. I have learned I cannot lead change without modeling and practicing that which I preach.”
Anne-Marie’s call to serve among us is a gift of the Holy Spirit. She brings congregational and mentoring experience, a warm and gracious demeanor, and a willingness to engage the issues facing our congregations in brave and creative ways. I give thanks to God for her presence among us and look forward to welcoming her officially in May.
Please join me in welcoming Anne-Marie.