A few weeks ago, Mike worshipped with us at Christ Church. After worship, he introduced himself and asked if he could make an appointment for a chat. I gladly accepted the invitation and asked him to email me with possible dates. We finally got together and to my surprise, Mike’s request was that he is to begin seminary at General Theological Seminary in the fall and would be interested in serving at Christ Church for his contextual education.
Again, that was a surprise to me. And I didn’t hesitate in agreeing to have him serve here at Christ Church. I don’t remember asking Mike why he chose Christ Church. After all, what is it about Christ Church that attracted you? I am very sure he knows why he chose Christ Church, and I am sure he would tell you should you ask him.
I readily agreed to have him serve here because I, too, was a beneficiary of a similar opportunity at All Saints Episcopal Church in Atlanta, Georgia. That experience was deeply spiritual, incredibly transforming, and unimaginably life-giving. For me, I cannot thank the then-Rector, Reverend Geoffrey Hoare, enough for the opportunity he gave to me, a stranger who simply walked into his church on a cold winter morning.
Remember what Matthew says: “For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me.”
Again, I have no idea why Mike decided to choose Christ Church, but I am sure it says something about our hospitality, ministries, outreach, and the many ways in which this vibrant church extends its reach.
I remember telling our staff this past Tuesday that as a parish, we punch above our weight. And to a greater extent, that is true. This is because our common life is filled with many opportunities for worship, formation, fellowship, and ministry. The good news is that we can offer and share all of these with you because of your support and prayers.
Mike will be with us for two years and will be very much involved in many areas of ministry. I invite you to offer him the Christ Church welcome. Please read about him below:
Hello Christ Church! I am your newest intern, Mike Looney, and I am thrilled to be serving in this amazing community. I am discerning my call to the priesthood and recently started my four-year journey at The General Theological Seminary in NYC, where I will be pursuing a Masters in Divinity degree on-line.
I am blessed with a beautiful family including my wife, Anne, children - Ella (22) and William (21), and our three loving dogs. We moved to Columbia from DC in 2001. Ella now lives in Denver, CO, and William is a senior at McDaniel College in Westminster, MD. Our home parish is St. Andrew's Glenwood.
In 1991, I graduated from McDaniel College (known then as Western MD College) and took a job at T. Rowe Price. After four years I joined a startup consulting company and in 2004 founded Chesapeake Benefit Partners, which I still own and manage.
In 2017, I realized I could not deny my calling any longer and began to transition towards being "a teacher and a preacher". In 2020 I started teaching at McDaniel College (teaching two classes - Business Ethics, and Intro to Innovation). In 2021, I became the Director of the Program in Innovation and Entrepreneurship at McDaniel, and also formally entered into the discernment process with the Diocese of MD.
I expect to be with Christ' Church for at least two years and for starters will be involved with older youth Sunday School and helping to lead the 3rd Thursday, Theology on Tap program (first meeting 9/21 at The Ale House - join us!).
I genuinely appreciate the warm reception I have received at Christ Church and look forward to worshipping, serving, and growing with you
I am grateful for the opportunity of mentoring Mike at this stage in his ministry, and I hope you will all join in sharing the many gifts and experiences that abounds here at Christ Church with him.