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When I was 12, my family moved to a new house. It happens, right? Yes, but: I loved that house. 

My family's two-story log cabin on Old Lantern Trail was the center of my world. It’s where I summoned the courage to ride a two-wheeler, attempt a back handspring, and swim the whole length of the pool in just one breath.

That house was the backdrop to so many of my early, formative memories. But the best part of the house wasn’t the house. The best part was that the house was surrounded by acres and acres of land. I miss the smell of the woods the most. So fresh, like pine needles and blue sky. 

My sister and I spent hours—entire days, really—exploring the woods with our cousins. We knew the trails like we knew ourselves. We didn’t realize how lucky we were. 

So when it came time to move, I was, simply put, quite dramatic. (For reference, give Miranda Lambert’s The House That Built Me a listen).

I cried big tears as I walked through the woods “a few last times.” I made a time capsule and hid it behind a board in my room (I’m not kidding). I looked at old pictures and anchored myself to that place however I could. 

And then we moved. And I did miss the trails and my room and that one tree but it wasn’t quite as dramatic as I made it out to be. Life moved on and I found new trails (albeit with a few more people in sight). 

It's no surprise that those years shaped me. They sparked in me a deep and lasting love of solitude and wild spaces (two things I still try to foster today in my very urban context). 

This week is another goodbye. After 11 years working for the CRCNA (nearly 8 managing The Network), I am stepping away from this role. I'm leaving to spend more time at home with my three young kids and become more involved in a ministry that partners with teen moms. 

But before I go, I need to tell you one more thing: It's hard to say goodbye. 

This community has shaped me. Most notably, I've been shaped by the words of the sincere. The ones who are humble and maybe even a little meek. The ones who aren't distracted by the noise because they're so focused on the call God has placed on their lives. The ones who are passionate about prayer, about children, about Jesus. The ones who have taught me, forgiven me, loved me—and in turn, have done this for the church. 

A few weeks ago I noticed that I can type much faster than I used to. A quick online test showed my average typing speed is 76 words per minute (wpm). Not bad, I thought. Or is it? 

I don't think I need to type faster. I don't think any of us do. Some of my favorite Network blogs over the years remind me of this, remind me of the slow (to us) work of God.  

So let's grab hold of the invitations to look lower, to be truly present, to practice radical reconciliation, and to become better listeners

My prayer is that The Network will be a community—a house—that's doing the good kind of shaping (see Romans 12:9-21). 

It's been an honor and a privilege. I sure will miss my role with The Network (though I can't promise a time capsule).




Staci, thank you so much for all you've done for the Network over the past 8 years (and your two years in other roles before that). You have been such a blessing, and I will truly miss working with you. The community that is The Network has been formed, in large part, by your gentle leadership and servant-hearted approach to helping others. While you can never be replaced, I am praying that that community will continue to flourish with whomever next steps into the role. And please know that you are welcome to blog here any time :)

Thank you.  The network has become the first place to turn with questions or to search.  Thank you for investing yourself in this good work.


And I will miss you too, Staci.  So many times you solved my problems with accessing my blogs because I was ending on pages that said, « Not found «  or something like that.  I hope that whoever takes over will be as helpful as you have been.  Best wishes for your next move.

Staci, I'm sad for the Network and the CRC, and full of joy for you, the ministry you are serving, and your family. You have been a remarkably loving and positive presence in the midst of a time of significant tension in the CRC. Thank you and God's blessings!

What wonderful news for you and your family that you are moving towards the next season of your life. You have been a smiling face and a helpful staff member. I remember well our days working in the synod office and your enthusiastic attitude! Be well my friend!

Staci, thanks for your good, faithful work. You name has become a familiar one online for us. We'll miss you.

Staci, you have always been a delight to work with. Your cheerfulness and positive attitude are inspiring and have a marvelous way of bringing out the best in others.  Shouting "Thank You" is insufficient for expressing gratitude for all that you have done.

My prayer is that your additional Mom Time will instill memories for your children that rival the beautiful memories you have shared in this post.  And may God bless you richly in the important ministry work to teen moms.  Thank you! We will miss you.

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