Dear members of the Trinity community:
We are writing to share the joyous news that the Vestry has elected the Rev. Phillip A. Jackson as the 19th Rector of Trinity Church Wall Street. We are blessed and grateful that Phil has accepted this call, and we look forward to this new era of leadership and the transformational work we can do together.
Over the past seven years, first as Vicar and then as Priest-in-charge, Phil has served Trinity with humility, integrity, and, most importantly, a deep and abiding love for God and for this congregation. During the past two years in particular — a uniquely difficult and challenging time for our parish and our city — Phil encouraged us to deepen our commitment to one another and to our missional work. His leadership has been, and now will continue to be, a gift to us all.
This election follows many months of discussion, including conversations with the Rt. Rev. Andrew Dietsche, Bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of New York, and Trinity’s Congregational Council, that led us to discern that Phil should be the next Rector of Trinity. In recent weeks, Phil also has engaged the congregation in deep and thoughtful Communion & Community conversations as we continue to discern Trinity’s responsibility in our neighborhood, our city, and our world.
We are particularly grateful to Bishop Dietsche for his wisdom and guidance during the past two years. We also want to thank the Congregational Council, the congregation, and Trinity’s staff for their faithfulness and steadfastness.
We will celebrate the institution of Phil as the 19th Rector of Trinity on Saturday, February 26, at 11am, and we are looking forward to seeing all of you there.
During this time of great joy for Trinity, we know that Phil would remind us to think of those we are meant to serve. We close with this prayer that we hope will guide us as a parish in the months and years to come:
Almighty and most merciful God, we remember before you all poor and neglected persons whom it would be easy for us to forget: the homeless and the destitute, the old and the sick, and all who have none to care for them. Help us to heal those who are broken in body or spirit, and to turn their sorrow into joy. Grant this, Father, for the love of your Son, who for our sake became poor, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
John G. Talty
Peter D. Barbey
William L. Cobb
Emory A. Edwards
Scott E. Evenbeck
Lynne Jordal Martin
Matthew M. Knisely
Christopher L. Mann
Martez R. Moore
Sara B. Queen
Gabrielle E. Sulzberger
Mary Katherine Wold
William H. Wright
A Message from Father Phil to the Trinity Community
Dear members of the Trinity family,
I am writing today, first and foremost, to give thanks to God for the opportunity to serve Jesus Christ, this congregation, and our community as the 19th Rector of Trinity Church Wall Street. I am deeply humbled by this call, excited by the possibilities that lie ahead for us — and, I will admit, a little daunted by the immense responsibility I feel toward all of you and this beloved church as we begin the next chapter in Trinity’s history.
I am grateful to the Trinity congregation for your love and support during these past seven years. We have worshiped together, grown in faith together, celebrated together, and grieved together, and I hold each of you in my heart. During the pandemic, you have shown enormous patience and resilience, caring for one another and embracing new ways of worshiping and being together in the name of Jesus Christ.
I am grateful to the Trinity staff for your tireless work to serve our congregation and our neighborhood, and to take care of one another. As I have said many, many times, this is the most talented and dedicated group of people with whom I’ve had the privilege to work. Your commitment and perseverance, particularly over the past two years, have been remarkable.
I am grateful to our Vestry for your unwavering support for the mission of our church, for your guidance and partnership during the past two years, and for walking the path together to deepen our Christian faith. Our work together has been deep and rich, and I’m thankful for your service to this church and congregation.
As I look forward to our continued work together, I want to share some initial thoughts.
In the discernment work we did earlier this year, we affirmed that Trinity is, above all, a parish church, where worship is at the center of our life together, and building community is how we support one another. I see Trinity as a vibrant, alive Episcopal church, a place full of energy, joy, and meaning, where we offer opportunities to deepen our relationships with God and with each other. I look at our recent discussions with Parker Palmer, Krista Tippett, and Christian McBride and Melissa Walker as examples of how we can engage in meaningful conversations about the questions that really matter. I hope we can do more of that.
Building community also means taking care of and strengthening our connection to our neighborhood through our worship services, direct outreach and service to those in need, and programs that invite our congregation and our neighbors to learn, play, and connect at Trinity Commons. Within the parameters of public health and safety, and in response to the needs of those around us, we will continue to provide those opportunities, and expand them when we are able.
Finally, at Trinity, we are acutely aware of the unique gift we have in our abundant resources. I believe that with that gift comes the great responsibility to use those resources wisely — responding to the crises of our age while ensuring that future leaders of our church can do the same. During the pandemic, that is what we have done, by making nearly $80 million in grants to partners who are serving the most vulnerable, here in New York City and around the world; providing meals for more than 230,000 people; and supporting the churches in our diocese. It is my hope that generosity and responsibility will continue to be our guiding principles as we manage our resources.
As we begin the New Year it is once again apparent that the needs of our community and our world are large and ever-growing. I believe we have been given the opportunity, and duty, to meet those needs. In service to God, and with God’s help, let us continue the good work He has given us to do.
I ask you to keep me in your prayers daily as we set off on this next part of our journey together.