So Much Good Happening Here!

| May 23rd, 2024

Dear Beloved Community,

If you have felt like this month has been full to the brim with wonderful staff news, I have even more wonderful staff news to share – if you can believe it!

Last Sunday, we welcomed with unanimous affirmation our new Associate Pastor for Youth, Missions, and Adults, Rev. Kyle Caudle! I bet several of you were like me, and told Kyle that third time’s a charm on our staff! We’re delighted to welcome Kyle back to our team, and Charla and Kyla into deepened relationship with our church. After a few weeks of transition time, Kyle will begin his work on June 10 and will begin in worship leadership that following Sunday, June 16.

We also bid a big, loving farewell to our friend, Rev. Zack Jackson, who has completed his work as our Pastoral Resident, graduated from Wake Forest School of Divinity with his Master of Divinity degree, and is headed off to University Baptist in Hattiesburg, Mississippi to serve as Pastoral Resident there!

Thanks to the thorough and expeditious work of the Personnel Committee, Zack’s particular areas of responsibility will not go untended! Zack’s work with new members and young adults have offered vital leadership to these essential and growing areas of our church’s life together. I am overjoyed to share with you that our friend, fellow member, and former minister, Rev. Mary Kaylor, will be joining our staff team as Minister to Newcomers and Young Adults! In this part-time position, Mary will pick up the baton from Zack and lead these communities with her signature flavor and exceptional care. We are so very fortunate to welcome Mary to the team! This position represents 15 hours per week on average, and is contracted through December 2024. Mary will begin on June 1.

In other student news, we are delighted to welcome Mallory Challis as our Summer Pastoral Intern this summer! Mallory is no stranger to us, having joined First Baptist on Fifth as a member last year. She has completed her first year of study at Wake Divinity, and will be working this summer on a broad ranging internship in pastoral ministry with a focus on youth ministry. Mallory’s work with us will begin June 3 and extend through August 11.

Internships take many forms, and we bless our friend, Lena Withrow, as she heads to New York City for her summer internship at Metro Baptist Church there! We’ve long had meaningful ties with our friends at Metro Baptist – you might remember that Kyle took a group of youth there some seven years ago! – and I know Lena will enjoy her work with them as much as they will with her! As you know, Lena serves as our Ministry Assistant and Communications Manager, and will continue to work remotely throughout the weeks she is away. We’re grateful for the capacity of remote work and a church who believes in, as our missional priority states, “becoming a teaching and learning church.” Lena’s last day in the office is May 30, and she will be back in her front office perch on August 13.

One of you said to me at the door on Sunday, “it just feels like so much good is happening in our church!” I couldn’t agree more. Today, I am profoundly grateful for you, dear church, and the countless ways you create such a healthy, vibrant place for all of us to serve!

Together in God’s work of Love,

Pastor Emily