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We are working diligently to encourage a smooth transition and demystify the process by communicating openly. Please review the FAQ’s below for your information.

The Wardens and Vestry would like to thank our Bishop Diocesan, Ian Douglas, and his team, for their support, and the Christ Church Interim Advisory Committee members for their dedicated service in identifying our Interim Rector, The Rev’d John H. Branson: Marnie Dawson Carr, Pam Gomez, Carter Harris, Chuck Royce, and Karen Royce.

There will be numerous opportunities for parishioner involvement via one of the four Transition Teams that will be created this fall: the Discernment, Recruitment, Hospitality, and Prayer teams. Christ Church Greenwich has been assigned a Transition Consultant, The Rev’d Marissa Rohrbach, who will help guide the Parish through the process.

The Rev’d Canon Lee Ann Tolzmann, Canon for Mission Leadership of the Episcopal Church in Connecticut, was with us on October 15 to kick off our new Rector search with an inspiring sermon and 10:10 presentation outlining the transition. Throughout the process, we will continue to work closely with her office and the Bishop Diocesan Ian Douglas.


  • What are the first steps in the process?

    The initial steps of the Transition Process are designed to let the current Rector “leave well”, with proper celebration of his ministry.
  • What roles do the Wardens and Vestry play?

    The Wardens, in concert with the Vestry, play a critical role in leading the congregation throughout the transition and help guide the life of the congregation as the Canons proscribe. From the first phase, they will ensure that priests are available for Sunday services and pastoral care, monitor the temporal needs of the congregation, and assist the Bishops in calling an Interim Rector. At least one member of the Vestry serves on the Discernment and Recruitment teams, acting as liaison to the Vestry throughout. The Vestry receives the list of finalists from the Recruitment Team, interviews the candidates, and calls the next Rector.
  • When will the search begin?

    The Canon for Mission Leadership has met with the Wardens and Vestry to begin the search process. One of the first steps is identifying Interim Rector candidates to be presented to the Vestry for consideration. Once the Interim Rector has been selected and is in place, the search for our new Rector will begin.
  • How long until we call a new Rector?

    The timing of a transition process, beginning to end, is determined by many factors and is impossible to predict. That said, the process is designed to take 12-18 months in total.
  • What is the traditional age of Church retirement?

    Clergy are required to retire when they reach age 72, per the Constitution and Canons of the Episcopal Church. Jim has chosen to retire at 65. He and Sharon will be returning to Indianapolis to be closer to family, and Jim will be involved in other non-pastoral opportunities.
  • When will we begin the search for the Interim Rector?

    Traditionally, parishes wait to start the search for an Interim Rector until after the current Rector retires. However, our Bishops, Jim, and the Vestry agreed that because of our size and complexity, it was advisable to minimize the gap between Jim’s September 1st retirement date and the Interim’s start date. Accordingly, we have started that process.
  • How can we be involved in the various search committees?

    As the transition process develops, the Wardens and Vestry will share opportunities for involvement. The Vestry, with the assistance of the Transition Consultant, will be forming the teams in the fall. If you are interested in serving on one of the Transition Teams, please contact either the Senior Warden Randy Schwimmer or the Junior Warden George Belshaw.
  • What is the purpose of the Interim according to the Diocese?

    The role of the Interim Rector is to help prepare the congregation for the permanent Rector. This includes, managing the sense of loss, addressing unresolved parish issues, help with healing any divisions within the congregation, nurturing the relationship with the Diocese, and assisting the parish with discovering its current identity and developing its vision for the future.
  • Does shortening the search process for the Interim shorten the search for the new Rector?

    No. The search for the Rector has deliberate steps that take time no matter when the Interim begins. That said, the search process is expected to take about a year to 18 months to complete.
  • Will a woman be considered?

    Of course! We are committed to discerning a diversity of highly qualified candidates as we seek to build our future ministry. Women’s ministry has long been vital to this congregation. We will encourage applicants across the spectrum.
  • When do we publish what we’re looking for?

    Once the Discernment Team has completed its work, we will publish the results, most likely in the first quarter of 2018.

Transition Process Updates

Announcing our Interim Rector The Rev’d John H. Branson

The Wardens and Vestry of Christ Church Greenwich are delighted to announce the appointment of The Rev’d John H. Branson as our Interim Rector...
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Curious to learn more? Here are FAQ's from the Episcopal Church in Connecticut.

If you still have questions, or feedback, please contact Senior Warden Randy Schwimmer, Junior Warden, George Belshaw, or Director of Marketing & Communications, Maria Olson Goins.