The Rev. Dr. Robert Honeychurch arrives in Santa Barbara this week as the interim rector of All Saints-by-the-Sea Episcopal Church, 83 Eucalyptus Lane.
Dr. Honeychurch is a nationally recognized teacher, preacher, and conference and workshop leader in the Episcopal Church.
For the past four years, he served as the missioner for Congregational Vitality for the National Church, where his focus was working with dioceses and parishes around the country to help identify and nurture the specific qualities and characteristics of healthy, growing churches.
“We could not be more excited to have a rector of the caliber of Father Bob,” said Sheri Benninghoven, senior warden of All Saints. “Foremost, he’s a wonderfully pastoral man, but is also a nationally recognized expert in helping church communities grow in their faith and their service to others.”
The Rev. Honeychurch spent nearly 25 years as a parish priest, most recently in the East Bay community of Fremont, a church similar in size and scope to All Saints. He also served in smaller churches, from the mountains of northwest Montana to a midsize town in Idaho to a Native American reservation. He’s an experienced and specifically trained interim pastor.
A native of Montana, the Rev. Honeychurch graduated from Seabury-Western Theological Seminary with a master’s degree in divinity as well as a doctorate of ministry in congregational development.
A professor of church leadership at Bloy House, the Episcopal Theology School at Claremont, he teaches courses in parish leadership and mission and ministry.
He and his wife, the Rev. Dr. Sylvia Sweeney, who is dean and president of Bloy House, live in Altadena in Southern California. He will be full time at All Saints-by-the-Sea in Santa Barbara, serving the greater South Coast region in spiritual formation, worship and outreach. He replaces the Rev. Dr. Jeffrey Bullock, who retired from All Saints in July.
— Robbie Boyd is the director of administration for All Saints-by-the-Sea Episcopal Church.