The Rev. Bill Stanford, rector of St. Christopher, Fort Worth, will retire on Sunday, May 1, 2022, after 35 years in ordained ministry.
Stanford’s last Sunday was April 24. There will be a reception in his honor on Sunday, May 1, immediately following the 9:30 am service at St. Matthew’s Lutheran Church, 5709 Wedgwood, Fort Worth, TX 76133, where St. Christopher currently is worshiping.
Stanford graduated from Nashotah House Seminary in 1987. His first assignment was at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church, Grand Prairie. Ordained deacon in July of 1987, and priest in February 1988 by Bishop Clarence Pope, he served for two years at St. Andrew’s. He still delights in the fact that he was ordained priest on Groundhog Day, February 2nd (The Feast of the Presentation).
He served at several congregations in the ensuing years including St. Patrick’s Bowie, Trinity Henrietta, St. Joseph’s Grand Prairie, another stretch as assistant interim at St. Andrew’s, and interim at Good Shepherd Acton. He was called to serve St. Christopher’s in June of 2000.
He served as Commission on Ministry chair for several years, as well as acting as the Diocese’s Ecumenical officer. In that latter role, he considers himself privileged to have helped facilitate the community service held by Interfaith Clergy in North Texas in support of our Muslim brothers and sisters in the wake of violence perpetrated toward that community.
He has served on the Standing Committee and on the School Commission. He also has been part of the local Circle of Clergy for Racial Justice that formed in response to the murder of Atatiana Jefferson.
He was an early adopter of Ashes to Go, and often took the Blessings of Animals out to the community on St. Francis’ Feast Day. He has been a regular presence at St. Christopher’s Laundry Love outreach ministry, usually to be found at the Kids’ Table.