An article from the Cathedral Times
by the Very Reverend Samuel G. Candler,
Dean of the Cathedral of St. Philip
Many of you know that Canon Bobbie Williamson has informed me of her decision to retire from active children's ministry at the Cathedral. With both regret, and deep thanks for her ministry, I have accepted her resignation and retirement, effective November 20, 2005. Bobbie has served the Cathedral of St. Philip for over 11 years, with amazing energy, faithfulness, and attention to intricate detail.
I believe that much of the great success of the Cathedral's children ministries in the last eleven years can be traced directly to the Cathedral's decision to call Bobbie Williamson to Atlanta. Dean John Sanders, and Canon Andy Anderson, knew that she was the right person to fill a dramatic need. It was my pleasure to inherit her large ministry and to make her an official Canon of the Cathedral.
With her dear husband, Sandy, Bobbie Williamson made the journey over here from South Carolina and began a powerfully effective ministry. There are not many parents, or children, in our community who have not received some sort of telephone call or note from Bobbie-ranging from condolences to requests for volunteers and teachers. Her requests were difficult to turn down!
Almost every present piece of the Cathedral's children ministry can be traced to the leadership of Bobbie Williamson: the Green Apron Ministry, the Nurturing Center itself, the St. Christopher's Ministry, the Blessing of the Animals, the Week of Wonder, the Shrove Tuesday Mardi Gras celebrations, the Teddy Bear ministry, Avery's Scarves. I know I am leaving out some important ones! I thank God for the ministry of Bobbie Williamson.
The Cathedral of St. Philip plans a tremendous celebration to honor Bobbie, on Sunday, November 20, 2005, at 10:10 am! Some of you know that, last week, we were still planning a great surprise event for Bobbie. We discovered that there was no way we could do justice to Bobbie's ministry with a surprise that might forget some people. So, the surprise is off. But the celebration is definitely on. Await a possible call to volunteer, and be sure to be at the Cathedral on November 20.
As is frequently the case when a beloved staff member departs, the Cathedral solicits special financial gifts for a retirement purse for Bobbie. If you would like to contribute to this purse, please make your check payable to the Cathedral of St. Philip, marked "Gift for Bobbie Williamson." Thanks!
Meanwhile, we have certainly begun the process of finding God's choice for our next Director of Children's Ministries. Canon John Mark Wiggers is leading up this search, and he has job descriptions available. In fact, we will probably have to hire an interim person before we find the right long-term call. We are looking for someone who might be "outside the box," an energetic and magnetic Christian, who can both manage and inspire God's people, but who might not be doing children's ministry exactly right now. You might know who God is calling to that position before the rest of us do; give me or John Mark a call with your recommendations and ideas. The Cathedral needs them!
The Very Rev. Sam Candler