Senior Minister Search Committee Update | July 2022

Dear Riverside Family,

Nearly sixteen months have passed since we began our discernment process as the elected members of your Senior Minister Search Committee. It’s been quite a spiritual experience for all of us as we’ve worked collaboratively and prayerfully in reaching consensus on a single candidate to recommend to you.

Our SMSC journey began in the spring of 2021 with meetings to brainstorm and strategize how best to approach our mission. Recognizing the importance of your participation from the outset, we hosted an in-person congregational gathering nearly a year ago in Sakura Park and continued to solicit your feedback by conducting listening tour sessions from last summer through the fall. The constructive input that we received from Riverside’s members, staff and clergy, as well as from the local community and national stakeholders, laid the groundwork for our October retreat to undertake crafting the church profile.

After the retreat, we continued to work closely together until December to complete a profile that would present Riverside as objectively as possible, and we gratefully acknowledge the invaluable assistance that we received from Riverside’s denominational executive ministers in accomplishing this monumental task. We purposely selected Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day of 2022 to post the approved church profile and senior minister job description not only because of the significance of this holiday but also because of Dr. King’s connection to Riverside.

As candidate applications arrived, we sought the Holy Spirit’s guidance in carefully reviewing each submission. We met, talked, shared insights, and prayed collectively over the subsequent weeks in narrowing the field from the many to the one whom we have now recommended to you – Rev. Adriene Thorne.

Our SMSC journey is nearing completion. During this holy time together, our connection to one another has deepened and we have forged lasting friendships. Our Riverside roots have also grown deeper, connecting us to this special community as followers of Christ in new and stronger ways.

Thank you for all of your support, encouragement, and prayers. In the words of that beloved gospel hymn, “We’ve come this far by faith, leaning on the Lord.”

Grace and Peace,

Alexa, Andrea, Annie, Beth, David, Emily, Hylda, Karissa, Lee, Lisa, and Mark