Pastoral Update 21 August 2020
Greetings in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Amen
I recently reread Acts as a part of my daily Scripture reading; once again I was struck by Peter’s response to the Council’s charges in Jerusalem (Acts 5:17-42): “We must obey God rather than men.” For me I hear this as my life is focused on God and God’s will for me as an individual as well as, God’s will for us as a community of faith. Paul puts it this way: “If we live, we live for the Lord; and if we die, we die for the Lord, So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord.”
Because I belong to the Lord Jesus Christ and want to know my Lord’s will as one of His servants, I need to be in prayer, Scripture, and worship. In order to comprehend to the best of my ability my Lord’s will, I have challenged myself for 2020 to read through Scripture three times. My first reading was a chronological reading of Scripture using the NRSV translation. I will complete my second reading through Scripture on 30 August. This reading has followed a daily Bible Reading Program focused on an Historical Plan using the ESV translation. Beginning 31 August, I will begin my third reading through Scripture for the year by using the Blue Letter Bible / One Year Chronological Plan and the NKJV translation. Therefore, through prayer, the Scripture reading I am doing, and worship, I am being transformed by the Holy Spirit. I observe this in the journaling I have been doing. I encourage you to take up a similar disciple of prayer, reading Scripture, and worship and observe how the Holy Spirit changes your life.
Beginning on 13 September 2020 we will begin a sermon series focused on the gospel according to Mark for the year. It will be a 12-month journey in the gospel of Mark. I have already begun my study of Mark by working on translating the Greek. This is followed by word studies, and then exploring the great cloud of witnesses through the use of commentaries.
Recently a congregation survey was distributed via ePres to gather information on the reopening of the campus as individuals, families, and community in this pandemic. The survey seeks information so that reopening is designed to meet the various needs of the people of God at First Presbyterian Church of Hollywood. I fully recognize that we will need a varied approach as we need to meet the different needs of our community.
IF you have not already done so please fill out the survey.
Finally, that status of the call process during this period of Transition. Briefly the Mission Study will be presented to Session for their study discussion in August. In September Session will vote regarding the Mission Study and whether or not it should be sent to the Presbytery for their approval at their meeting in October. Presbytery upon receipt of the Mission Study will review it and interview three to four Elders before voting on FPCH forming a Pastoral Nominating Committee (PNC). If the Presbytery grants approval to form a PNC a congregational meeting will be held in November for the election of the PNC. Upon the election of the PNC they will take up their duties to include: training on their task by Presbytery, developing a Congregation Information Form (CIF) to be approved by Session and reviewed at a minimum by the Presbytery. Once this is completed the CIF will be posted and applications will we sought and the formal search begins.
Please pray for us as a congregation that we may be filled with the Holy Spirit being led to do our Lord’s will at the corner of Carlos and Gower.
May our risen Lord bless you and keep you!