White would have celebrated his 10th anniversary at St. Michael in June, but will instead become the rector of St. Alban Episcopal Church. His final sermon in Anniston will be Sunday.
“It was just time for a change, for new challenges,” White said. “It’s a bigger church that offers new and exciting possibilities.” St. Alban is one of the largest churches in its regional diocese.
Spending nearly 10 years at the same church is somewhat rare, with the average tenure being roughly five to six years.
“What I’m going to miss most about Alabama is green,” White said. “There’s not a lot of green out in Arizona. There are a lot of great people out here, too, but I’m sure there are a lot of great people out there as well.
“And of course the church itself — the castle — is such a glorious space. I won’t find a place like this anywhere.”
St. Michael is more than 100 years old, and is widely acclaimed for its Norman Gothic architecture, including an imposing marble high altar, intricate woodwork and a 95-foot bell tower.
White was among five finalists for the St. Alban post, and met with the selection committee, the vestry and the area bishop before finally getting the notice that he had been selected.
“It’s a long drawn-out process,” he said.
Now St. Michael will begin the same process to find a new rector, first inviting interim priests to fill the role until a permanent replacement is hired.
“Bruce White has had a good and faithful ministry at St. Michael during these 10 years,” said the Rt. Rev. Henry N. Parsley, Episcopal bishop of Alabama. “I’m very grateful to him for his leadership and service. St. Michaels is a venerable parish in our diocese and certainly one of the most beautiful places of worship.
“I look forward to its continued stewardship of the gospel and the extension of its ministry of good news and service to the ministry.”
Contact Brett Buckner at firstname.lastname@example.org.