Weekly Notes May 15, 2020
I don’t know about you, but I have been truly enjoying the relative coolness of our weather this spring – and embracing it…because the humidity and heat are coming! That said, the mornings and evenings have been a wonderful time to walk and pray for you and for our church. I will continue this practice, even as the heat sets in!
Since the Fall of 2019 (why does that seem so long ago?), the Strategic Planning Team has been meeting to discuss the next season of our mission as a church. They have worked hard; talking to many of you in focus groups and individual conversations, sharing together as a team, absorbing articles about church vitality and growth, and taking hard looks at numbers – lots of numbers! At the end of this month they will present to the Governing Board the fruit of their labor, and ask that body to affirm the work they have done, and the vision for Saint Paul’s UMC for the next several years. If the vision and plan is affirmed by the Governing Board, it will then go to the Core Ministry Team (made up of the leaders of all of our wonderful ministries) to discuss the impact and influence on their programs. Once these two bodies have looked at the strategic plan and added their voices, we will communicate in a larger way to the congregation. Will you be praying for this important part of the process? I am so grateful for this team of hard and faithful workers, who prayed and listened and discerned where God might be leading this congregation.
Even as we continue in our distancing for the sake of others, we are having conversations about what needs to be done as we think about gathering once again. There has been no hard date set for this action, and we have, at the suggestion of our Bishop, put together a Task Force that will look carefully at safety measures and practices that we must develop in order to gather safely. Please be confident that any and all decisions relative to gathering in any capacity will be made with the best information we have from medical experts who can best advise us. I can imagine that we will continue to offer opportunities to gather in multiple ways so that all can feel comfortable in being able to connect.
And through all this, the work of the church continues. On Pentecost Sunday (May 31) we will confirm five of our young people into the faith; our Children's Team has put together an exciting summer opportunity for our children and families; the Missions Team is praying about how we might reach out to our community in the next several years as we recover economically from the impact of COVID; our youth continue to connect online; our support of the Florida United Methodist Children's Home continues and you are finding ways to connect to one another in creative ways!
Congratulations to all our graduates - we are proud of you, and look forward to celebrating with you on Sunday.