Christ Church Ithan and St. Martin’s Church Radnor Call The Reverend Veronika Travis as New Shared Rector.
The Rev. Veronika Travis has accepted the call to be the first Shared Rector of Christ Church Ithan and St. Martin’s Church, effective September 1, 2020, as announced by the Wardens and Vestries of the churches today. Christ Church Ithan and St. Martin’s Church are in a covenant relationship. Jacqui North, Rector’s Warden Christ Church Ithan said, “Veronika is an excellent fit for this creative and new role in so many ways: she is a strong preacher and good communicator, with genuine compassion, empathy, warmth and tolerance. She values outreach locally and globally, and has vision, energy, and the creativity to guide us on our shared mission.” Sandy Reinhardt, Senior Warden St. Martin’s Church said, “Veronika is a nurturing minister who will embrace the youth as the present and future of the church while valuing all members of both congregations. She will be a bridge-builder between our congregations and in our community and the larger body of Christ.”
A respected spiritual leader, Travis has most recently served as Associate Rector- St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, Alexandria, VA overseeing the children’s and youth ministry, preaching, teaching and providing pastoral care. As St. Luke`s has recently been without a rector, she was more involved in pastoral care and adult formation. Before this, she was a Community Engagement Fellow with Virginia Theological Seminary, Alexandria, VA increasing composting and sustainability efforts on campus and in the neighborhood.
As a Seminarian Intern-Episcopal Church of the Ascension, Silver Spring, MD she assisted the rector and deacon with pastoral, liturgical and formation activities. As a Web/Communications Consultant at True Image Web Productions, Travis built and managed web sites and social media presences for Episcopal churches and ministries.
Travis was a Pastoral Care and Outreach Intern at the Cathedral Church of St. Paul, Burlington, VT, where she assisted the dean and rector with ministry duties, preached and coordinated the cathedral’s presentation of the 2015 Trinity Institute.
Travis shared, “As a priest committed to building up smaller churches and helping them minister effectively in their neighborhoods, I am excited by the plan to work together to find new mission practices for congregations that are aging and getting smaller, but that still have vital ministries to offer to their local communities and the church at large. Christ Church and St. Martin’s are taking a brave step, and the two churches together may indeed be able to serve the needs of the community better than they can alone. My mission as a priest is to help others to fully live their vocation as Christian ministers and witnesses to Christ’s love for the world. In every sermon I preach, pastoral encounter, youth activity I lead, and formation event I am part of, I seek to serve Christ’s church in a way that helps it grow.” Travis’ education includes a MDiv (Certificate in New Mission Practices)-Virginia Theological Seminary, Alexandria, VA and a BA, Comparative Literature (French and English)-Smith College, Northampton, MA. Additional education includes: Godly Play Core Training and a Certificate in Theologies of Human Rights and Development with FoundationCristosal, San Salvador.
After a thorough and extensive search process, the Vestries of Christ Church Ithan and St. Martin’s Church Radnor both voted unanimously to invite Travis to be their shared rector. Christ Church, Ithan, (CCI) and St. Martin’s Church, Radnor, (SMC) are both small, family-like congregations in the heart of the mainline suburbs of Philadelphia. Separated by less than 2 miles, our parishes share a community, a history, and a common vision for the future. SMC was founded more than 130 years ago. Shortly thereafter, CCI was created as a mission to local farmers in the southern part of the township. Over the next several decades both parishes grew, and by the 1950s, that growth necessitated a formal separation. By 1958, what had begun as one parish had grown into two thriving congregations. Today, there is still much that SMC and CCI have in common. That is not to say that our two parishes are identical though, and it is our individual strengths (and challenges) that in part have brought us together again in our search for a shared rector.
The congregants of the two churches are eager now to see where Reverend Travis takes them on this unique journey of faith.
Jacqui North, Senior Warden at Christ Church Ithan
Sandy Reinhardt, Senior Warden at St Martin`s Church, Radnor
July 26, 2020