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To my church family at Bower Hill Community Church,

It is bittersweet to announce that I have accepted the Music Minister position at St. John Neumann Catholic Parish in Franklin Park. It is a very large church with many opportunities that will advance my career. I am looking forward to it, though I am sad to be leaving Bower Hill.

These last couple of months have been life-changing. My boyfriend of almost two years, Peter Bucci, asked me to be his wife at the end of June (I said, “YES!”), I am starting my senior year at Duquesne University, and now I will be starting this new position at St. John Neumann. Through the good times and the bad times I have been through in the last seven years, you have been there for me in different ways, and I am so blessed to have known you.

I will never forget everything that you have done for me—there is no possible way I could list everything that I am thankful for, and there is no way that I could express how much you all have meant to me in this time as your Director of Music. Especially to my choirs, instrumentalists, soloists, and those who have served on the Worship & Music Committee—you have been my sole support system. I could not have made it this far without you.

In the musical Wicked which is a spoof of the Wizard of Oz, there is a beautiful song called “For Good” that I think somewhat expresses my feelings towards you all. Listed below are some the lyrics.

I’ve heard it said that people come into our lives for a reason, Bringing something we must learn, And we are lead to those who help us most to grow if we let them, And we help them in return. I know I’m who I am today because I knew you. It well may be that we will never meet again in this lifetime So, let me say before we part: So much of me is made of what I’ve learned from you. You’ll be with me like a handprint on my heart. And now whatever way our stories end, I know you’ll have rewritten mine by being my friends. Because I knew you, I have been changed for good.

These are the only words that can somewhat express how I feel about this transition. I hope you know that I mean every word. Through this time of change, I hope you will keep me in your prayers, as you have been in my prayers these last seven years.

With much love and blessings,

Jessica Baier

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