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Dear Friends in Christ,

The comings and goings of clergy are an important part of my ministry as Bishop of the Diocese, and it is always a joy to assist vestries in the discernment process when they search for a new Rector. During the course of this summer, two of our parishes have elected new Rectors to succeed a priest who has reached retirement. In both cases, I am pleased to say that clergy from within the Diocese have been called to these new ministries.

Fr. Alan Horton succeeds Fr. Zeke Rogers as Rector of the Church of St. Gregory the Great in Mansfield, and his Institution will take place at 9 a.m. on Sunday, Aug. 14, which had been scheduled last year as the date of my Annual Episcopal Visitation. This means that most clergy will be unable to attend the service called the "Celebration of a New Ministry,” but all of us will want to remember Fr. Horton and the people of St. Gregory’s in our prayers on this happy occasion. He previously served as curate at St. Peter & St. Paul in Arlington and then at St. Vincent’s Cathedral in Bedford. Fr. Rogers now assists as a retired priest at Christ the Redeemer in Fort Worth.

Late last year, Fr. David Allen announced his plans to retire as Rector of St. Francis Church in Dallas, where he has served since 1993. After ordination to the priesthood by Bishop Robert Terwilliger in January 1985, his ministry took him to brief curacies at Christ Church and then Holy Cross in Dallas before he was called as Rector of the Church of the Holy Comforter in Cleburne in 1990. At the time of his call to St. Francis, he was serving as curate at the Church of the Ascension in Chicago. A retirement mass and dinner will take place at St. Francis on Tuesday evening, Sept. 6, following a short sabbatical.

Fr. Timothy Matkin is the new Rector-elect at St. Francis, and his Institution and Induction will take place on the Feast of St. Francis, Oct. 4. He served for seven years as the Vicar of St. Matthew’s Church in Comanche and Trinity Church in Dublin, as well as an occasional supply priest at St. Mary’s in Hamilton. His ordained ministry began in 2002 as a curate at All Saints’ in Fort Worth prior to becoming an assistant priest at St. Alban’s in Arlington. We congratulate him on his new cure.

We are proud of the success of these two "sons of the Diocese" and wish them well in the years ahead.

Faithfully in Christ,

Bishop Jack Leo Iker