Senior Warden's Note | March 3, 2024

On behalf of St. John’s Cathedral Vestry – The Very Reverend Anne Sawyer has accepted the continuation of the position of Interim Dean/Priest-in-Charge from 15 March 2024 through 15 March 2025.

The vestry members are sincerely appreciative of the numerous hands-on leadership she has provided during her first year here at St. John's Cathedral.  

At the invitation of the leadership at St. John’s Cathedral, Los Angeles, the Rev. Canon Dr. Eric H. F. Law of the Kaleidoscope Institute facilitated 5 congregation-wide gatherings called Celebrating Our Past and Imagining Our Future Together. We are truly grateful for the work that has been done, thanks to Rev.Dr. Eric H. F. Law.  He believes that we are able to do the work that has to be done as we continue to work together,valuing each other respectively.  

The following are a glimpse of the work that has been done:

We have gotten to know one another in small groups sharing “wall chart” topics and learned about the Iceberg Analogy of Organizational Culture.

Reaffirmed Respectful Communication Guidelines sharing the history of St. John’s by forming “decade groups” appreciating the Gifts/Strengths, Struggles/Challenges at each decade.

Focus on sharing the experienced truth of periods of St. John’s history when there were conflicts and lack of transparency.  


Imagining the future of St. John’s, we must    

·        Look at gifts we must uphold.

·        Things we need to pay attention to.

·        What we need to have and to do.


Participants began discussion on action plans for the areas of concerns named, but simply ran out of time to arrive at anything concrete. Further, those who were there toward the end of the consultation did not fully represent the demographics of St. John’s.

Liturgy & Music Survey

·        What is your favorite hymn or song that moves your soul?

·        What is most important to you about liturgy/music at St. John’s Cathedral?

·        What might be one concern you have?


The key to success of the consultation provided by The Rev. Dr. Eric H. F. Law facilitator is to honor the data that people shared in that spirit.  There are 5 areas of concerns/issues that St. John’s need to address in the coming year.

1.      Continue the work started through this consultation by facilitating regular community gatherings to:

·        Strengthen internal relationships by creating opportunities for gracious conversation on significant topics                                                          

·        Learn skills to address conflicts faithfully and to increase transparency in communications    

·        Explore, develop, and affirm St. John's mission, values, and goals


2.      Gain a commonly owned organization and operating structure with clearly defined leadership roles

·        Relationships among lay leaders, priest,vestry, bishop

·        How do we operate as an Episcopal Church?

·        How do we function as the Cathedral in the Diocese of Los Angeles?


3.      Evaluate and support existing ministries (internal and external) and explore new opportunities. They are:

·        Children and families

·        Reaching people and organizations in the neighborhood

·        Housing/Changing Neighborhood


4.      Develop and implement a financial oration that includes:

·        Transparency

·        A stewardship and fundraising plan  

·        An annual budget


5.      Incorporate learning from these consultations to the process of calling the next Dean


The Vestry, Interim Dean and I look forward to working with all of you as we continue this journey together. Thank you for your presence among us and support.



Canon Lurelean Gaines