Tuesday, July 17, 2018

May Adventures...

When the day of Pentecost had come, they were all together in one place. And suddenly from heaven there came a sound like the rush of a violent wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. Divided tongues, as of fire, appeared among them, and a tongue rested on each of them. All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other languages, as the Spirit gave them ability. – Acts 2: 1-4, NRSV

What an amazing journey we had together during the season of Lent and an amazing journey that we are currently on in Easter.  Easter did not disappoint as we had beautiful weather, a glorious morning or worship, saw the choir wear their new robes for the first time, and welcomed many people to worship from other churches, and some for the first time in addition to our church family.  And Spring is not disappointing us with the brilliant colors appearing as I write this month’s Adventures.  While the days after Easter may not have the same fanfare, attendance, or fashion statements, it’s STILL Easter here in the church, as the Easter season lasts for 50 days and is when Jesus appears to the disciples after his resurrection from the dead, then ascends to Heaven to seat at God’s right-hand.  On Pentecost, May 20 this year, the Holy Spirit blows through the gathered community of believers who gather in Jesus’s name and empowers them to go into the world to continue the work of Jesus, and that means we are to continue doing the same too.

As we are talking about the Holy Spirit, the Holy Spirit is at work here in Quincy and at Community UMC!!  It’s an awesome feeling to wake up on Sunday morning and to be excited about coming to worship.  Although there’s also plenty to do during the week and it is nice to wake up each day excited to see what is in store at the office or in the community.  I sense the Holy Spirit when I bring Holy Communion to our members who can’t always be here on Sunday, in the ministries of our church, whenever I’m out in the community, and even while in my office studying.  Our church is ALIVE right now and that is the Holy Spirit at work!!  And I look forward to seeing where the Holy Spirit leads us, especially as we begin slowing things down later this month before we get into the more relaxed and laid-back pace of summer.

During the month of May, we’ll be talking a lot about the work of the Holy Spirit in our second post-Easter miniseries, “By the Power of the Holy Spirit.” Each Sunday, we will talk about the following:

May 6: “We Join the Outsiders/The Outsiders Join Us” – Acts 8: 26-40, Acts 10: 44-47

May 13: “Leaders are Raised Up” – Acts 1: 15-17, 21-26

May 20 (Pentecost): “Proclaim Jubilee!” and Music Sunday – Acts 2: 1-21

On May 27, one of my best friends from seminary, Pastor Justin Martin will be visiting us and deliver the message on Trinity Sunday.  Justin is a staff chaplain at St. Anthony’s Medical Center in St. Louis, Missouri and we served together on the Tuesday Chapel committee at Wesley Theological Seminary.  He’ll be visiting Quincy and Sacramento before heading back June 2.  He’s excited to be visiting us and I’m excited to have him here. 

Finally, I am excited to let you know that after meeting with the Great Northern District Committee on Ordained Ministry in March, I was approved for commissioning as a provisional elder in the UMC.  This is the next step in the ordination process and will be starting what’s called “Residence in Ministry” this Fall, which is similar to medical residency in which I’ll use that time to prepare for ordination as elder in full connection, which I hope will be in 2020.  Thank you all for your prayers of support and for being with me on this journey!!  I also would like to say thank you to everyone in this congregation for the condolences and prayers after my cousin CJ’s passing.  My aunt Linda still needs our prayers as she grieves, along with CJ’s young-adult children Holly and River. 

Peace & Blessings,
Pastor Andrew

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