Friday, February 5, 2016

Fwd: A Message from the Superintendent

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: J. Richard Thomas <>
Date: Fri, Feb 5, 2016 at 9:24 AM
Subject: A Message from the Superintendent

Dear LM community:

It has been my privilege and honor to serve as superintendent of Lancaster Mennonite School since July 1, 1983. It is humbling to consider the trust that faculty, staff, students, alumni, board members and LM friends placed in the school during these years.

In Ecclesiastes we read that there is a "season and time for every matter under heaven." I have been privileged to be involved in many seasons of planting, growing and harvesting at Lancaster Mennonite. This seems to be the time in the season of my personal journey to retire from the office of superintendent and enable the school to call a new leader who will lead to higher levels of excellence and character in the next season. Therefore, I have submitted my letter of retirement, which is planned for December 31, 2016.

The past 33 years have been rewarding years of growth for me personally and for the school. Together, we have worked to advance the mission and footprint of Lancaster Mennonite School from one campus of 440 students to five campuses and over 1,500 students in southcentral Pennsylvania.

We built and renovated a number of facilities. However, the most satisfying part of my time at LMS has been the relationships that were formed with students, staff members, board members, the church and the broader community. It was a particular joy to observe holistic growth in both students and staff and to know the contributions that alumni are making in our community and world.

What we have achieved has been possible because of the collaboration of administrative colleagues, staff members, board members, the prayers and fiscal investments of many friends, and the work of volunteers. However, I am keenly aware that what we accomplish in Mennonite education is finally "not by our own might or power but by the Spirit of the Lord."

I leave with satisfaction of all that we have accomplished together, yet knowing that we have not reached our full potential. I have confidence in the current school leaders and the passion the faculty brings to continuous school improvement.

A search committee for the school's next superintendent is being finalized. Andrew Dula, a member of the LMS board of directors, will chair the search committee, which will include members of the Executive and Quarterly Boards, representatives of area church conferences, and constituents who support the mission of Lancaster Mennonite School. The school anticipates naming members of the full committee by the end of February.

As we enter our 75th year my prayer is that LM continues to prosper and provide an excellent education that invites students to Christlike love, peacemaking and service in a global society.

J. Richard Thomas signature

J. Richard Thomas

PS: A full press release and my official letter of retirement can be found on our school website under "News and Features" or by clicking the following links for the PDF documents: 

Centered in Christ

Transforming Lives
Changing our World 


J. Richard Thomas


Lancaster Mennonite School, 2176 Lincoln Highway East, Lancaster, PA 17602
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