It is with sadness that I accepted the letter of resignation for Pastor Dean Smith this morning. I am attaching a copy of his letter at the bottom of this e-mail.
Pastor Dean has received and accepted a new call to serve as the “Director of Spiritual Programs” with the Appalachia Service Project, an organization that provides short-term mission trips for congregational groups in Virginia, West Virginia, Kentucky and Tennessee.
Pastor Dean will be responsible for the spiritual and faith-based content for all of the groups who will be participating with ASP projects. His work in this position will impact will over 15,000 young people from all over the United States. He is uniquely gifted to do this important work very well.
If you know Pastor Dean, you know of his great heart for mission and service. Quality mission trip experiences have long been a hallmark of Trinity’s ministry with young people. These experiences transform the lives of the people who are served, and the people who travel to serve. Appalachian Service Project, and the young people who participate with them, will be blessed to have Pastor Dean helping to give shape to their experiences. Trinity young people have worked with ASP projects in the past.
There are not words to describe how deeply Pastor Dean will be missed at Trinity. For over 15 years, he has served our congregation and our young people faithfully. He has developed a youth ministry that is looked to by many other congregations as a model. He has developed meaningful relationships with young people, a fantastic volunteer team, a gifted staff and he has been a great colleague. Personally, he is a friend and I will miss him, his sense of humor and his supportive nature.
While we are saddened by our loss, we are excited for Pastor Dean and his family as they launch into this new adventure. His new position will be based in Johnson City, Tennessee. Pastor Dean’s last weekend at Trinity will be October 22nd. His last day in the office will be October 27th. Pastor Dean and his family will be moving shortly after that date.
There will be a celebration of Pastor Dean’s ministry and an opportunity to thank him on the weekend of October 22nd.
It is critical that Trinity’s quality ministry with young people and their families continues. Our leadership will be working diligently to tend to the short and long-term needs of our ministry with children and youth. As our plans develop, we will keep in communication with the congregation.
In the meantime, please keep Pastor Dean and his family, as well as our congregation in your prayers as they prepare for this transition.
If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact me.
Pastor Dean’s Letter:
October 10, 2017
Dear Friends of Trinity,
“I’ve had good days and bad days and goin’ half-mad days…”
– Jimmy Buffett
There have been 5,458 days since my service at Trinity began, and I’ve learned something during each of them. I thank God for you because you have given me opportunities that the vast majority of my colleagues in ministry will never have. You have entrusted me with the responsibility of following God’s Spirit into some uncharted waters of ministry. You have blessed me by allowing me to be part of many of your most significant, powerful moments. You have encouraged me to teach, lead, pray, and serve as I have felt called to do through the years. I am grateful.
With that spirit of gratitude, I now feel a call to move on to a new adventure—one for which my years at Trinity (and experiences before) have uniquely prepared and equipped me to pursue. I have accepted a position as Director of Spiritual Programs with Appalachia Service Project in Johnson City, Tennessee, and we will move in early November.
It has been a great run (15 years!) during which I’ve seen many incredible changes and worked with some wonderful people—staff members, volunteers, and, especially, some incredible young people. God is good. I am thankful for so many things
- For the people who have inspired me and encouraged me
- For the many great memories
- For the ways God has helped me to grow and learn
- For the future that God has already seen for Trinity’s people and for me and my family
Thank you for your ongoing prayers and support for me, my family, and Trinity’s phenomenal youth ministry in this important time of transition.
Pastor Dean Smith