Grace to you and peace from our Lord and Savior Jesus the Christ. Amen
“I know the plans I have for you says the Lord, plans for your welfare and not for harm, to give you a future with hope.”Jeremiah 29:11 NRSV
Change/transitions are difficult and challenging especially when we can’t see any end in sight. And so I thank you again for the warm welcome I received as I began my time with you as your Interim/transitional pastor. Along with all of you, I am praying that with the Spirit’s help, we will have a Called and Settled Pastor by the end of the year. In my experience as an Interim I find that from the time a Call Committee receives a candidate’s name to the actual calling of the person is 4-5 months. The candidate has to give 30 days notice to their present congregation before starting a new call. Then they have to move and get settled in a new community… a call does not happen overnight!
My contract with you is until December 1, 2020 and in the time we have together, as pastor and congregation, we will be faithful about the mission of sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ. We have new chairpersons for Evangelism: Lorraine Horton and Dave Frech who have some creative ideas as they follow in the footsteps of Pam Bowen. They want to do some NEW things! The Confirmation program continues as in the past with classes in the fall and winter and all the same expectations. No changes.
And now a little bit of law! One of the constitutional requirements for pastors, which include Interim pastors, is to keep all records up to date: that includes financial/membership/baptisms/weddings and funerals. These records are always important but no more so than in a transition time. They determine who is eligible to vote at our Semi-Annual Meetings and for a new pastor.
According to our Constitution, C8.02 c. Voting members are confirmed members. Such confirmed members during the current or preceding calendar year, shall have communed in this congregation AND shall have made a contribution of record to this congregation. It is not one or the other. This means either cash in your offering envelope or a check with your offering envelope number indicated in the memo of the check. Currently, our records show a number of members who have worshipped, but have not made an offering of record. When we are closer to the actual call, those persons will not be allowed to vote.
It is so easy to pull back and not come to worship, or to withhold financial support, or not participate in the life of the congregation during times of transition… but my friends, it is in times like this that we need each other even more. It is in times like this that participating in worship, supporting the church financially, and fellowshipping with each other gives us encouragement and strength.
In Christ, Pastor Peggy Marks