Pastoral Transition

Check back here for the latest information.

If you have any input for the Transition Committee, please email Transition Committee Chair, Jim Kane, at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


Letter from the Congregational President – February 5, 2020

Dear Friends in Christ,

Here is an update on our Vacancy Journey…

The Intentional Interim Pastor (IIP) Call Committee met with our IIP candidate Rev. Dr. John Michael Ramey (Pastor Mike Ramey) on January 25th. They felt that Pastor Ramey is exceptionally well qualified to meet our immediate needs and has a clear understanding of the role.

Here is a high-level summary of his background, a detailed view is available HERE:

Pastor Ramey has served the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod as a Pastor for over 36 years, in mission plants, rapid growth environments, and turn-around situations. He has further served as a Chaplain in the Army, including deployment during Operation Desert Shield /Desert Storm. Pastor Ramey is supportive of our current communion practice and supports women in service and leadership roles. His worship style is adaptive to the community he serves, and he is comfortable in a range of styles.

The IIP Call Committee believes that Pastor Ramey will be an excellent resource to help OSWLC build on our 25-year legacy from Pastor Mann and continue our mission to glorify God and make disciples for Jesus.

The IIP Call Committee unanimously and enthusiastically recommends that the OSWLC Voters Assembly extend a Call of one year to Pastor Ramey as an Intentional Interim Pastor (IIP).

To support the congregation with this possible Call the MMSLG has provided goals for Pastor Ramey and ensured the IIP agreement is supportable within the church’s budget. There is a detailed FAQ available HERE.

Additionally, Pastor Ramey will visit OSWLC on February 23rd. He will attend the 8:00 am service and be available after that service and throughout the morning to meet and greet the congregation.

Finally, the MMSLG is calling a Voters’ Assembly Special Meeting on March 1st to consider the following resolution:

In accordance with the OSWLC Congregation By-Laws, article 6(A), the Call Committee recommends that the Voters Assembly approve a Call to Rev. (Dr.) John M. (Mike) Ramey to serve as an Intentional Interim Senior Pastor for Our Savior’s Way Lutheran Church for a period of one-year beginning on March 16, 2020.

Please reach out with your thoughts, questions, and/or concerns.

Blessings,

Heather Ann Schigur Novak
Congregational President
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Updated Letter from the Congregational President – Jan. 12, 2020

Dear Friends in Christ,

Here is an update on our Vacancy Journey…

As we have moved into Epiphany and continue to celebrate our 25th anniversary, we are thankful for God's goodness, who by the design of the Holy Spirit, brought Pastor William Mann to Our Savior’s Way Lutheran Church. Together we have been serving God and the Ashburn community for the last 25 years. As we marked Pastor Mann’s retirement, our appreciation for his service to God at Our Savior’s Way is unmeasurable. In addition to the handwritten bible presented to him in service last Sunday, the congregation provided Pastor Mann a monetary bonus in appreciation for his long and dedicated service at the retirement celebration in November.

We will all process this change in different ways. I have prayed on this a countless number of times and have found great peace and joy in celebrating the next chapter for Pastor Mann and Sally, they have climbed the mountain, and can finally enjoy the view. As each of you process this change in your own way I would remind you of Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

To aid both Pastor Mann and Our Savior’s Way transition towards our next Senior Pastor, we have together completed a Ministry Covenant wherein Pastor Mann will remain separate from the congregation for a bit, at least 12 months (no attendance or pastoral acts). As approved at the November Voters Meeting, effective January 6, 2020, Pastor Tyson Labuhn is our Acting Senior Pastor. Pastor Labuhn, with the Our Savior’s Way staff, will continue to ensure our mission and ministry services run smoothly during the transition. Questions related to Pastor Mann’s retirement should be directed to Pastor Labuhn.

The Mission & Ministry Servant Leaders Group (MMSLG) has created a Call Committee to call an Intentional Interim Pastor (IIP) as Senior Pastor for a limited timeframe. The MMSLG has received an IIP recommendation, Rev. Dr. J. Mike Ramey, from Southeastern District Lutheran Church Missouri Synod and the Call Committee has started the review/interview process. The Call Committee members are Jim Kane, Phil Kuhn, Kay Lewis, Aida Toledo, Carolyn Broemmer, and Penny Payne.

The MMSLG will continue to work with the Southeastern District Lutheran Church Missouri Synod to complete our Congregation profile, which is key to moving forward in calling our next Senior Pastor. Additionally, a Prayer Committee has been established with the following members: Kay Lewis, Diana Allison, Roxie Sullivan, Martie Dunnett, and Anita Born. Be sure to look for their prayers in the Mid-Week and Sunday Bulletins, thank you for your efforts!

Please reach out to Pastor Tyson, the MMSLG, or a Transition Committee member with your thoughts, questions, and/or concerns.
Blessings,

Heather Ann Schigur Novak
Congregational President
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Letter from the Congregational President – Jan. 8, 2020

Dear Friends in Christ,

Here is an update on our Vacancy Journey…

As we have moved into Epiphany and continue to celebrate our 25th anniversary, we are thankful for God's goodness, who by the design of the Holy Spirit, brought Pastor William Mann to Our Savior’s Way Lutheran Church. Together we have been serving God and the Ashburn community for the last 25 years. As we mark the retirement of Pastor Mann, we cherish the many blessings God has given to our congregation during this time of mission and ministry service.

We will all process this change in different ways. I have prayed on this a countless number of times and have found great peace and joy in celebrating the next chapter for Pastor Mann and Sally, they have climbed the mountain, and can finally enjoy the view. As each of you process this change in your own way I would remind you of Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

To aid both Pastor Mann and Our Savior’s Way, Pastor Mann has agreed to give the congregation a bit of separation, at least 12 months, in order to help with our transition towards our next Senior Pastor. During this transition time, the congregation has placed Pastor Tyson Labuhn as the Acting Senior Pastor, until an IIP who is appropriate for OSWLC has been identified. Pastor Labuhn, with the OSWLC’s staff, will continue to ensure our mission and ministry services run smoothly during the transition.

The Mission & Ministry Servant Leaders Group (MMSLG) has created a Call Committee to call an Intentional Interim Pastor (IIP) as Senior Pastor for a limited timeframe. The committee members are Jim Kane, Phil Kuhn, Kay Lewis, Aida Toledo, and Penny Payne. The MMSLG has received an IIP recommendation from Southeastern District Lutheran Church Missouri Synod and the Call Committee has started the review/interview process. The MMSLG will continue to work with the Southeastern District Lutheran Church Missouri Synod to complete our Congregation profile, which is key to moving forward in calling our next Senior Pastor. Additionally, a Prayer Committee has been established with the following members: Kay Lewis, Diana Allison, Roxie Sullivan, Martie Dunnett, and Anita Born. Be sure to look for their prayers in the Mid-Week and Sunday Bulletins, thank you for your efforts!

Please reach out to the MMSLG or a Transition Committee member with your thoughts, questions, and/or concerns.

Blessings,

Heather Ann Schigur Novak
Congregational President
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Letter from the Congregational President – Nov. 20, 2019

Dear Friends in Christ,

Here is an update on our Vacancy Journey.

What a wonderful turnout for Pastor and Sally Mann’s “Appreciate & Celebrate" event! The feedback I received was all positive and a good time was had by all. Thank you to all who attended and all who worked to host such a wonderful event.

As we enter into our 25th year in December, you will see some fun celebration opportunities, such as the OSWLC stickers that were available last weekend with voting. We will also be offering an opportunity to purchase customized bricks again that will be included in one of the church's entries. This will run for several months and could be a great Christmas gift! More information to come soon.
 
At the November 17th Congregation Voters’ Assembly we held continuous voting for Church Officers, MMSLG At-Large Members, and Board of Governance At-Large Members and the results are provided in an article from Mike Meese, our Congregational Vice President, below.
 
I would like to highlight the 2 motions that were considered, discussed, and passed by the Congregation:
 
  1. The membership of OSWLC has designated Pastor Ralph Wiechmann as Pastor Emeritus at Our Savior’s Way Lutheran Church.
     
  2. The membership of OSWLC has authorized the MMSLG to: create a Call Committee to call an Intentional Interim Pastor as Senior Pastor for limited timeframe; contract Vacancy Pastors as needed to supplement the work of current called staff during transition; appoint Pastor Tyson Labuhn as the Acting Senior Pastor effective 7 January 2020. The completed motion is available for review HERE.
What’s next?
 
The MMSLG has reached out to the Southeastern District Lutheran Church Missouri Synod to let them know we intend to call an Intentional Interim Pastor and will form the Call Committee. MMSLG, with the Transition Committee and Prayer Committee, will work to complete a draft Congregation Profile and reach out to the Congregation to gain feedback on what are we looking for in our next Senior Pastor. This Congregation Profile will be approved by the membership as part of the Senior Pastor Call Process. 
 
As always please reach out to the MMSLG or a Transition Committee member with your thoughts.
 
God’s blessings to you!

Heather Ann Schigur Novak
Congregational President
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_________________________________

Voters' Assembly Results

On Sunday, November 17th, Our Savior's Way voted for its officers to serve in leadership for the next two years. A total of 176 congregation members voted and the following members were elected (or re-elected, indicated by *).

President:  Heather Novak*
Treasurer:  Ed Hollandsworth
Ministry & Mission Servant Leaders Group:  Beth Anton, Kay Lewis,* and John Scherbenske
Open Arms Board of Governance:  Belinda Haagsma, Jim Merkle, Shawn McAteer, and Johnnie Stubbs*

Congratulations to these members and thanks to them for serving the Church in the coming years.

Questions? Contact Michael Meese at MThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


Town Hall Meeting Oct. 30, 2019

The MMSGL is hosting a series of Town Hall meetings to answer questions and concerns around our Transition Process. Additionally, we will be taking feedback on the “proposed” Transition Motion for the November 17th Membership Meeting. The purpose of the motion is to ensure leadership continuity and gain authorization to create a call committee for an Intentional Interim Pastor.

Completed Motion Here

Town Halls

  • Sunday, November 3rd – 8:00 am – 12:30 pm – Music Room
  • Thursday, November 7th – 7:00 pm – Music Room
  • Sunday, November 10th – 8:00 am – 12:30 pm – Music Room 

If you are unable to attend one of the Town Hall feel free to reach to myself or any member of the MMSLG.

God’s blessings to you!

Heather Ann Schigur Novak
Congregational President
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Updated Letter from the Congregational President – Oct. 16, 2019

Dear Friends in Christ,

Here is an update on our Vacancy Journey… 

This coming December is OSWLC’s 25th year. Pastor Mann has led us on this most wonderful journey, and for that, we wish to honor and celebrate both him and Sally at an “Appreciate & Celebrate” event on November 9th, from 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm. Be sure to RSVP.

The Mission & Ministry Servant Leaders’ Group (MMSLG) is actively preparing for the November 17th Voter’s Assembly. In addition to holding elections for church officers, at-large members of the MMSLG, and the Open Arms Board of Governance, we will be providing an update on your feedback around the desire for an Intentional Interim Pastor or a Vacancy Pastor to assist in the new year with Pastoral support. This update, depending on the recommendation that will be put forward, could also include a vote on "Creating a Call Committee" as that would be needed for an Intentional Interim Pastor.

BUT WAIT, there is still time to provided feedback if you have not already. While the MMSLG and Transition Committee have been actively working to gather feedback from across the Congregation, you can still reach out as your voice matters. Please provide your feedback to myself or Jim Kane (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) prior to the October 24th MMSLG meeting where we will be preparing the final recommendation to the Congregation. Remember the choice is ours!

God’s blessings to you!

Heather Ann Schigur Novak, Congregational President
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Letter from the Congregational President – Oct. 2, 2019

Dear Friends in Christ,

Here is an update on our Vacancy Journey…

This coming December is OSWLC’s 25th year. Pastor Mann has led us on this most wonderful journey, and for that, we wish to honor and celebrate both him and Sally at an “Appreciate & Celebrate” event on November 9th. You can volunteer to assist with this celebration by reaching out to Nikki Deacon.

The MMSLG has completed the process of establishing a Transition Committee, which is to act as an open group that supports group decisions, fosters change, solicits input from the congregation, and communicates freely about the transition. The MMSLG and the Transition Committee met with District President, Rev. Dr. John Denninger, of the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod, to kick-off the process and understand our options as a Congregation. As I noted at the August Congregational Meeting the direction we take is up to the congregation. President Denninger and his team are here to help us and offer guidance, but the choices are ours to make.

With that, the Congregation has a choice to consider. Would we like to consider an Intentional Interim Pastor or a Vacancy Pastor in the new year?

An Intentional Interim Pastor is a called pastor for a fixed period of time, they specialize in transition, would assist in sustaining our ministries, and will help us with this large change to our ministry.

A Vacancy Pastor is contracted for specific services, covers basic pastoral needs, and could be a rotation of pastors.

Note: Pastors serving in these roles would NOT be eligible for a Tenured Call, their purpose is to assist during our vacancy only. Additionally, a Voters' Assembly is needed to establish a Call Committee and to vote on a Call.

The MMSLG and Transition Committee is looking to gain feedback from the Congregation on this topic. Please reach out to the MMSLG or a Transition Committee member with your thoughts.

Transition Committee:

  • Jim Kane - Chair
  • Sara Carlin
  • Beth Anton
  • Bill Pfancuff
  • Michelle Scherbenske
  • Linda Merkle
  • Penny Payne
  • Matt Niermann
  • Syam Pilli
  • Salle Sappington
  • Aida Toledo
  • Richard Moffett
  • Joe Harris
  • Caroline Broemmer
  • Maria Nicolau 

God’s blessings to you!

Heather Ann Schigur Novak, Congregational President
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Letter from the Congregational President – July 24

Dear Friends in Christ,

I am reaching out to provide follow-up related to Pastor Mann’s retirement this upcoming January. The MMSLG has reached to District President, Rev. Dr. John Denninger, of the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod, and received our “Vacancy Journey” package which provides guidance as we move forward. We have scheduled a September meeting between the MMSLG, Church Administration, President, Rev. Dr. John Denninger and his team to walk through our options and next steps. Additionally, the MMSLG will be forming a Prayer Team and Transition Team over the next month.

The MMSLG will provide additional information at the August 18th Congregational meeting, and I look forward with seeing you there. If you have questions or concerns, please feel free to reach to myself or any member of the MMSLG.

I hope you enjoy the rest of your summer and God’s blessings to you!

Heather Ann Schigur Novak
Congregational President
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Letter from the Congregational President – June 19

Dear Friends in Christ,

I am reaching out to provide support to you and to wish Pastor Mann all the best on his decision to retire. This is an exciting new chapter for Pastor Mann, and a new chapter for Our Savior’s Way.   

While change can be hard at times, I want to reassure you that the Mission and Ministry Servant Leaders Group (MMSLG), is actively working on the next steps to move forward in the future. We are reaching out to our District President, Rev. Dr. John Denninger, of the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod, and will be creating a transition committee. In addition, we will work closely with Pastor Mann, Pastor Labuhn, and the church staff throughout the transition process. The MMSLG will be providing you more information over the next few weeks and at our August congregational meeting.

I would ask for your prayers and support during this time, and that God would continue to richly bless Pastor Mann and Our Savior’s Way Lutheran Church. If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to reach out to me or any member of the MMSLG. 

Heather Ann Schigur Novak
Congregational President
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Pastor Mann Announcement – June 18

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

This letter serves to announce my decision to retire on Epiphany—January 6, 2020. I want to thank you for the many ways you allowed me to be your pastor. As the years go by I will remember with joy our time together. I trust the same will be true for you.

I have been the pastor of Our Savior’s Way Lutheran Church for 25 years. I’ve watched children be born. I’ve baptized, confirmed, performed marriages and funerals. I’ve visited hospitals and shut-ins. I’ve seen Our Savior’s Way grow from a small group of 27 people meeting in my living room to a thriving congregation with a bustling Open Arms Christian Child Development Center. I have been privileged to work with excellent church staff and lay leaders. Together we have realized many dreams, lived through a few trials, and persevered. Together we have faithfully served our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and the mission of His gospel.

While I am leaving you, there is One who remains constant—Jesus Christ. He has been here from the beginning and He will be with you for the rest of time. My prayer is that you will allow the Holy Spirit of Jesus to guide you into the future, because I believe that Our Savior’s Way will always have a vital purpose in God’s plan. It may not always look like the church we have today. There will be challenges to face and decisions to make. But a passion for the gospel and our shared mission—To glorify God and make disciples for Jesus Christ by: FORMING RELATIONSHIPS, EXPERIENCING JESUS TOGETHER, and SHARING GOD’S LOVE—will see you through.

Some of you may wonder why I am choosing to retire now. Certainly, the events of the past year have caused me to reevaluate God’s calling on my life. The death of my father and brother brought home to me the understanding that our lives on this earth have an end point. I have tried to consider how I can best serve Him with the time He has given me. After much prayer, I have come to know that God is leading me in a new direction.

While the retirement of a pastor is certainly a significant time in the life of Our Savior’s Way, it is not unexpected and I believe we have in place a leadership team and staff who will develop a plan that will enable this congregation to move confidently and boldly into God’s future. As we make this transition over the next six months, I will ask you to remember this above all else—while I am moving on, God is staying put. I commend to you the words of the Prophet Jeremiah:

“For I know the plans I have for you” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you; plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” (Jeremiah 29:11-13)

Blessings to you all,

Pastor Bill Mann


 

Contact Information

43115 Waxpool Road, Ashburn, VA 20148
Phone: 703-858-9254
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Sunday Worship Services

8:00 AM – traditional
9:30 AM – traditional (1st, 3rd Sundays)
9:30 AM – contemporary (2nd, 4th Sundays)
11:00 AM – contemporary

Holy Communion celebrated at all services
Nursery available 7:45AM — noon

9:30 AM – Bible study and Sunday School
11:00 AM - Bible study

Our Mission

At Our Savior's Way, we glorify God and make disciples for Jesus by: Forming relationships, Experiencing Jesus together, and Sharing God's love.