As reported in last week’s "Top 5" email to the congregation, on Saturday, August 22, your Elders, Trustees, Treasurer, Business Manager and Pastor met in Miller Hall for 5 hours.
Trustee President, Bill Bramer, reviewed trends in our church over the last two decades, identifying key moments in the life of our church where momentum shifted. Certainly, one of those key moments was in 2015 when we joined a new denomination, The Covenant Order of Evangelical Presbyterians, ECO. We saw a video where Pastor Doug was inviting those in the community to join us as we embarked with new enthusiasm for outreach for Christ. In 2017 we adopted a new Vision, identified as the “Vision Frame” with the mission of “Connecting with God, one another, and the world through Christ”. Our Vision is to become a flourishing church “Obeying the Great Commission to Change Our Community”. We all acknowledge this has been difficult.
This year, January through March 15, before we were hit with the pandemic restrictions, we were beginning to slow our decline in membership while concurrently stabilizing operational expenses relative to income.We had accepted several new members into the congregation in the prior 12 months and had more adult and infant baptisms than in the prior 4 years combined. However, since March 15 our world, and the world for most churches in this country has changed dramatically. It has become increasingly difficult to reach out to those in need, both within our church and in the community at large. We have a deep sense of loss at not being able to continue in person all the relationships we cherish including worshiping and serving others together. We do not know what the future holds; how long these conditions will continue; when we will be able to freely and safely worship together or even whenwill we see the return of our winter residents?