Sewanee Wilderness

We have decided to move to Sewanee, Tennessee for Seminary!

Wilderness is not a luxury, it is a necessity of the human spirit. – Edward Abbey

To our wonderful friends and family,
You are an amazing group of people and we will never be able to thank you enough for your prayers, support, and generosity.  I am about to finish up a near three year odyssey also known as the “discernment process” and after a lot of prayer, thought, and conversation, we have decided that our family will be moving to Sewanee, Tennessee this summer. We will make this move so that I can complete the Masters of Divinity program at The School of Theology at the University of the South in pursuit of ordination to the priesthood in the Episcopal Church. I am confident that attending Sewanee will provide the very best theological education, a diverse community to learn and study with, and various opportunities to hone my skills as a shepherd of God’s people. A big part of this decision had to do with the comfort and happiness of our family and access to both a university setting and being surrounded by nature. Sewanee provides that. Edward Abbey once said that wilderness is not a luxury, it is a necessity of the human spirit. That really resonates with me now as I am set to engage in the most spiritually intensive few years of my life.
It is a huge leap of faith that we are taking as a family and yet the support that we have received from our friends and family help us know that we are taking this leap with the full backing of people who care for us. A huge heartfelt thank you to the people who have helped me from a young age learn to listen for God’s voice and follow His call, I most certainly wouldn’t be where I am now without you. I am humbled by your generosity as I wouldn’t be able to follow this blessed calling without you. I would also like to thank my family for their understanding and willingness to embark on this crazy adventure. Please continue to keep us in your prayers and we will keep you up to date on what life in seminary is like, and what direction the Holy Spirit is guiding this ship.
Blessings on you and much love, Ian Williams

Reflections on Lent

I would like to start by saying thank you.  Lent is a season where we make a conscious effort to renew our faith and relationship with Christ.  As such folks often choose to eliminate or limit some of the things that they typically (often unhealthy habits) do as a means of penance, reflection, and praise.  Lent is also a season when people choose to take on more and/or different types of spiritual practice, acts of charity, and new ways to (re)connect with God. This year I have chosen to take on two particular practices that I don’t typically, or enough anyway, participate in. One of my Lenten practices is that I have taken on praying over a certain child named Colton who goes to a preschool at one of the local day care centers at a Methodist Church.  This year, each child in that program has someone praying for them every day during Lent.  There are cards that guide these prayers in a sort of daily devotional format.  I like the idea of praying over someone who I don’t know and likely may never meet.
I have also decided to take on the task of naming the things and people and experiences that I am thankful for as often as I can.  This is why I want to take this opportunity to thank you, the person reading this, for being you. You give so much to the world and I hope you know that.  I am thankful for you. You are loved.
So as for school, I have recently been accepted to the School of Theology in Sewanee, as well as the Seminary of the Southwest in Austin, Texas. I expect to hear back very soon whether or not I have been accepted to Virginia Theological Seminary in Alexandria, Virginia. We will make our decision on where we as a family will live, learn, and grow in the next month or so.  As you can imagine this is an intense period of time for me and for my family as we decide where we will spend the next three years of our lives. Again I am thankful for you and I ask for your prayers as we continue on this journey.  Also help me by praying for and over Colton.
Your brother in Christ,