Fourth United Methodist Church
Sunday, May 27, 2018
Gather to worship God, Grow to know God, Go to serve God

From the Pastor's Desk


A Note from our Senior Pastor;

How to move forward?
The moving of a pastor could be a very stressful experience for a congregation and for the pastor as well. This seems to be an open door for anxiety about the future of the church, the coming of a new pastor, and the leaving of the present one. However, it is important to remember that the church was founded by Christ, and pastors are servants of Christ, who offer years of service to a church, but the church needs to rejoice in the blessings received and given, and leaving anxiety in God’s hands. Therefore, the church is invited to rejoice for what has been done in the name of the Lord. Philippians 4:6 says: “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” This verse from the letter of the apostle Paul to the Philippians are a very personal one. He is writing to his friends far across the sea from him, and yet it echoes very strongly the theme of the whole letter, which is the word "Rejoice". It is amazing that when the apostle was a prisoner of the Roman emperor, chained to a guard day and night, restricted from going about the work he loved, preaching and reaching out to the regions beyond, he nevertheless writes a letter that is the most rejoicing, the most triumphant of all his letters. Eleven times in this letter the apostle uses the word “rejoice,” and that marks the theme of this letter. Rejoice in what the Lord has done for us, in us, and to us, during these three years that I have been blessed of being your shepherd, your pastor, your spiritual leader. Rejoice in the new opportunities that the Lord has offered us through discipleship, through missions, through hospitality. Moving forward, rejoicing in that the Lord has done, means to be in constant mission, one of my personal invitations to you, as your pastor during these three years. Therefore, “Mission Week” will start with the season of Pentecost. Pentecost, for a second year, has become the beginning of our church “Mission Week.” During this week, the church is challenged, and encouraged to know more about the different mission opportunities offered by the church and other institutions in our world, country, state, and community. The main aim of it is to create awareness of the multiple openings for the congregation to serve God in active mission. This year our “Mission Week” is from Saturday, May 19 to Sunday, May 27 – Trinity Sunday. Therefore, our Pentecost Sunday will be guided by testimonies and experiences of volunteers, who have been serving the Helping Hands Food Run program, and it will conclude with the visit of Rev. Lenore Hosier, as our guest preacher, who is actually the Conference Secretary of Global Ministries at Susquehanna Conference. Moving forward, rejoicing in what the Lord has done, means to be in constant prayer, that my invitation to you was to walk around the neighborhood and pray in the corners, in the streets, for the people. Moving forward, rejoicing in what the Lord has done, means to be in constant journey to perfection, being always prepared to be a disciple of Christ, more than a member. Moving forward, rejoicing in what the Lord has done, means to be in constant awareness of those who come, and those who we encounter, by being a hospitable church, a hospitable congregation, hospitable disciples. How to move forward? 1 Corinthians 16:13-14 says: “Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong. Do everything in love.” May your love for God be so strong, that this season of farewell and good-byes would be just a season, as we move forward to a new step in Christ Jesus. Amen.

 

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