Episcopal Church welcomes assistant rector | VailDaily.com

Episcopal Church welcomes assistant rector

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VAIL — The Episcopal Church of the Transfiguration has announced that the Rev. Emily Lukanich will join the clergy as assistant rector Sunday, succeeding the Rev. Mark Huggenvick, who retired in August.

Lukanich will assist the current rector, the Rev. Brooks Keith, in celebrating the Fourth Sunday of Advent at its 8 and 10 a.m. services that day.

"I applied for the position on a whim, but upon visiting, it just felt like home, like we belonged," Lukanich said. "We knew this was the place for us."

Lukanich is the daughter of military personnel who landed in Charleston, South Carolina, for the balance of her youth. The eldest child of three, she grew up on the beach in a resort destination similar to the lifestyle of the Vail Valley. A graduate of the University of Illinois-Champaign in French literature, she felt a calling in her mid-20s.

'Great Adventure'

After marriage to her husband Christopher and now a mother of two, she received her Masters in Divinity degree from the Virginia Theological Seminary in 2014. Lukanich arrives in the Vail Valley from Blacksburg, Virginia, where she is currently curate for the Christ Church congregation. Largely responsible for campus ministry, she will take on additional responsibilities at Episcopal Church of the Transfiguration as assistant rector.

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"Our move to the Vail Valley is a great adventure and a new place to grow our family," Lukanich said. "There are so many possibilities here. Beginning ministry at Transfiguration is an exciting challenge with a whole new group of people to grow and learn from, and teach. I am honored to be chosen for this position."

Lukanich and her husband were both teachers for several years before she left the profession for the seminary. Now raising two young boys who will attend elementary school, the Lukanich family looks forward to hiking and camping. All are new to skiing.

"Mother Emily will inject new life, experience, and knowledge into our congregation," Keith said. "She'll be jumping in with both feet as we celebrate Christmas, but we are all very excited to welcome her with open arms into our community and the Transfiguration family."

Lukanich will be joining Keith and the rest of the Transfiguration team performing services on Sunday, as well as the Christmas Eve and Christmas Day services at the Vail, Beaver Creek and Edwards Interfaith chapels.

For more information, go to http://www.episcopalvail.com.