Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ:
Our congregation is working through a prolonged period of transition between called pastors. The COVID-19 pandemic has made it difficult for all churches to gather as a church family and significantly slowed our pastor nominating process. Pastor Dave is battling health issues and God has called Pastor Joel to shepherd another congregation in Monrovia. Does that mean God has forgotten FPCH or is no longer active among us? Not at all! We are a session-led congregation, and your session has stepped up to ensure our congregation’s stability and well-being. We take God’s call to us to serve as elders during this chaotic time very seriously; we love the Lord, His church and our fellow congregants. We trust God, we strive to follow Christ and are confident His Holy Spirit is leading us.
Know that your elders are ensuring that:
– we are able to worship together and express our love for God through glorious music, both in person and online;
– we are teaching the Bible to people of all ages;
– we are working to make fellowship opportunities available;
– we are ensuring that congregants in need of pastoral care receive it;
– we remain committed to working to alleviate suffering of the less fortunate both here and abroad; and
– the administrative, financial and operations aspects of the church are being handled appropriately.
At a time when the world seems to be anxious and out of control and we are dealing with an unsettling pandemic, it may be hard to see that God is in control — that He loves us and cares for His church. Are we in a more difficult situation than the early church? Your session thinks not – God’s hand is working in our congregation, and we firmly trust that our congregation’s resolve to be faithful to God, teach His Word and follow Christ together is key to continuing our congregation’s historic commitment to being a conduit of Christ’s love to our surrounding community and the world.
Before Christ ascended to the Father, He promised his disciples another Comforter – His Holy Spirit. Christ’s disciples, entrusted to continue His ministry on earth, were people like us – imperfect people with ordinary occupations and human flaws, whom Christ called to spread His powerful message of the Gospel. People like us! The leaders of the early church lived in a culture at least as hostile to the Gospel as the divided state of our nation today. Take courage in remembering that the hostility to the Gospel surrounding the early church could not stop the Gospel from spreading – His Holy Spirit is still active among us today, and God’s Word will prevail.
Jesus told us not to worry about anything; He called on us to strengthen our faith. The Lord has plans for us, for our welfare and not for evil. He has work for us to do together to help Him reconcile a broken and hurting world. We are to trust God completely, and your session trusts Him completely. We are to exercise patience and forbearance with each other! Please continue to pray for Pastor Dave and Gerlinde Watson; for Pastor Joel as he responds to God’s call to minister to another congregation; for your church family; and for your session. We are here for you and invite you to join us in faithfully following God’s guidance and honoring His call on our lives.
May the Lord bless and keep you, lift His countenance upon you and give you peace, make His face to shine upon you and be gracious to you.