St. Philip’s Rector Search

hendrickson smallerWe are very pleased to announce that the Vestry has issued a call to the Rev. Robert J. Hendrickson III to be the next Rector of St. Philip’s In The Hills Episcopal Church. This call is the culmination of many months of work on the part of the Search Committee assessing the gifts and skills of prospective candidates, and discerning work on the part of the Vestry as we met with the finalist candidates. We are even more pleased that Fr. Hendrickson has accepted the call and will begin serving at St. Philip’s on August 1, 2016. His first celebration of the Eucharist will be on August 7, and he will preach at the services on August 14.

Read more about Fr. Robert and his family here.

Read a message from Fr. Robert to the parish here.




clark crop 2With the retirement on July 31, 2015, of the Rev. Canon John Kitagawa as Rector, St. Philip’s In The Hills has been in the midst of a period of transition, under the guidance of Interim Rector and Search Consultant the Rev. Canon Frank Clark (read more about Canon Clark here). This is a time of immense, important, and exciting opportunity as we seek God’s guidance for the future ministry of St. Philip’s.


Day of Discovery

Day of Discovery logoThe process began with the parish-wide Day of Discovery, on Saturday, October 31, 2015. We gathered as a parish community to discover our strengths and to express how these strengths align with the core values of our parish community. In this way, we discovered how God has gifted us to minister in the wider community and our dreams for the future of St. Philip’s. This was an opportunity for members and friends of St. Philip’s to provide input into the search process.

We used a process called Appreciative Inquiry, which asks what works at St. Philip’s and what are the strengths of St. Philip’s. We build on our strengths and the ways in which we have been gifted by God.

Vestry Follow-Up

After the Day of Discovery, the Vestry met weekly with Canon Clark to complete a major milestone of the search process: analysis of the input provided on that day, to produce of a list of key Goals and Values for the parish, selection of the Search Committee, and creation of a charge to the committee to guide its work.


As members of the Body of Christ growing in faith and practice, we have established the following goals to transform lives and strengthen the ministry of Jesus Christ in this place

•Enrich and support our children and youth ministries

•Strengthen the financial health of St. Philip’s

•Increase the effectiveness and visibility of our ministries within the larger community

•Increase fellowship and build community with all age groups

•Sustain the core values of the parish

Core Values

  1. Diversity, inclusiveness, openness, and welcoming
  2. Music as expressed in liturgy
  3. Community
  4. Liturgy
  5. Outreach
  6. Spiritual development
  7. Excellence and beauty
  8. Varieties of opportunities
  9. Commitment to parishioners of all ages
  10. Commitment to Believe Out Loud

Search Committee

The charge to the Search Committee was as follows: “The search committee is directed to develop search criteria based on the Church’s mission statement and on the congregation’s goals and values as determined during the Discovery process and to prepare the ministry portfolio. The committee will screen candidates for skills that meet the specified goals and criteria in order to present to the Vestry a short list of nominees who have the necessary skills and abilities to be our next rector.”

Search Committee Members
Herb Burton
Bob Couch
Mary Herring
Mary Kautz
Richard Kuns
Jim Marr
Gwen Powell
Mary Margaret Sprinkle

The Search Committee prepared and posted the ministry portfolio for the Office of Transition Ministry, as well as compiling and preparing the Parish Profile. The deadline for submission of applications was March 25. The Search Committee received the packet of applicants’ materials and spent hours reviewing them. They screened the candidates, conducted Skype interviews, and prepared a short list of qualified candidates. This list was presented to the Vestry at a special meeting on May 4.

St. Philip’s parishioners, staff, and clergy are extremely grateful to the Search Committee for their months of diligent and dedicated work.

View St. Philip’s Parish Profile here.


The Vestry then spent much time in personal and group discernment, taking into account feedback from staff members and clergy, about which candidate was the person whom God was calling to be the leader of ministry in this parish. The Vestry is grateful for everyone’s prayers as they carried out this important work. They very much felt the presence of the Holy Spirit in the unanimous decision.


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