Dear Friends and Colleagues,
“To everything there is a season and a time for every purpose under heaven.”
These words from the Book of Ecclesiastes have always been a comfort to me in times of sorrow and sadness, and in times of transition and change. Thus, I begin this difficult letter with their wisdom.
I have some sad news that I need to share with all of you. Following extensive testing, I have been diagnosed with Frontotemporal Degeneration (FTD).
FTD is a disease that results in progressive damage to the temporal and/or frontal lobes of the brain. It normally occurs in one’s 50s and 60s. FTD is a gradual, progressive decline in language, mobility, behavior, and short-term memory. You can learn more about it at The Association for Frontotemporal Degeneration website, and from this testimony by a former doctor who lives with the disease.
While I am in the early stage of this disease, the executive functions required by my job have become increasingly difficult, and it is time for me to step down as Dean of Trinity Cathedral. I intend to finish work on Sunday, January 29, 2017. I have met with the Bishop, Wardens, and Vestry to prepare for a timely and orderly transition.
Emily and I have made our home in Cleveland and we plan to stay here, so you will likely see us around town. However, we will take our leave from Trinity to make room for a new dean. We hope to travel and enjoy life together. I also intend to discover new expressions of ministry that will include preaching, teaching, writing and photography for as long as I am able.
In the meantime, we will celebrate together the coming of Christ during the Advent, Christmas and Epiphany seasons. On Sunday, December 4, I will share more with you about this journey from the pulpit. Our Advent retreat leader, The Rev. Barbara Crafton, and my friend and parishioner, The Rev. Amy Greene, Director of Spiritual Care for the Cleveland Clinic, will join me for the Dean’s Forum as we begin to explore what this all means. I hope you will be with us.
It has been an honor and privilege to serve as your dean for the past 17 years. I have great confidence in the imagination, courage and faith of this amazing congregation. It is my prayer that you will continue to proclaim in word and action God’s justice, love and mercy for all creation as Trinity Cathedral begins its third century.
Much love and blessings,
The Very Rev. Tracey Lind
Editor’s Note: The following letter was sent to Trinity members and friends of Trinity on November 30, 2016. Please direct press inquiries to Interim Communications Manager Sam Hubish, 216-509-0874, firstname.lastname@example.org.