On Sunday, February 5, Lanette Carpenter was honored during the service for her contributions to St. Stephen’s, not only since November 16, 2008, but also before. The Rev. Dr. Vernon Gotcher, Interim Rector, read a tribute to Lanette, then presented her with a plaque. Fr. Gotcher’s tribute is:
Pretty much everyone in St. Stephen’s and in the Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth knows Lanette Carpenter. When she talks about coming to St. Stephen’s, she talks about her call to Fr. Gotcher and his immediately meeting with her about St. Stephen’s. She was a member immediately.
Through her years at St. Stephen’s, Lanette has shared her enthusiasm, God-given gifts, and love of Christ in many ways. Today we honor her for her selfless giving to our parish through her service on the Vestry.
During the summer of 2008 when it was apparent that the leadership of the diocese would leave the denomination, several of St. Stephen’s members, led by Diane Snow, began preparations to assure we would be able to transition to a new place of worship with a liturgy and environment that was loving and in keeping with the Episcopal Church. Lanette became involved almost immediately. When the call came to establish a new Vestry and Jeff Boleware asked members of that core group of their interest in serving, Lanette was first to say she was. In November 2008 when the division of the diocese occurred, Lanette was in place on the St. Stephen’s Vestry and began her service. She has served as liaison to several of our ministries and life of our church, most recently as liaison for Church Growth. She developed a framework for our small groups, of which many of you participate.
But Lanette didn’t stop with our parish. The new empowerment we all felt in November 2008 was taken a step further, and Lanette began working in several areas within the re-establishing Episcopal Diocese of Fort Worth through membership on many committees and through leadership roles in various aspects of diocesan life. As the 2011 Diocesan Convention was about to begin its development stage, Lanette, who chaired the Convention Committee for 2010, again stepped up and served on the planning team. In November 2011, Lanette, along with husband Jim, were an integral part of the actual Diocesan Convention, leading a workshop on envisioning the diocese’s future, a much talked about part of the convention.
Today at St. Stephen’s, we honor Lanette, her enthusiasm, her wonderful spirit, and her happy feet as she concludes her service on the Vestry. Lanette, thank you for your leadership.