From Pastor Jo


Inviting God into the process…


As I write this letter, we are squarely in the middle of the long season after Pentecost, a season of new beginnings stretching from Trinity Sunday to the first Sunday of Advent; a season that is centered on the work of the Holy Spirit in our day-to-day lives as Christians. The season after Pentecost is the longest season of the church year and is symbolized in the color green, the color of life and growth. It is during this time that we explore the mission of the church. How appropriate it is, then, that on Sunday, September 9th, we will celebrate the work that we have done so far in our Round Table discussions, and begin to explore the question: “Who is God calling us to be as St. John’s United Church of Christ?”


Unlike making decisions in the secular world, our process to arrive at an answer cannot be an exercise in simply weighing pros and cons and making a decision based on facts. Instead, we will enter into a period of discernment – a time when we intentionally invite God into the process.


Discernment is a process that listens for, and honors, the place of God’s will in our lives. The word, itself, comes from a Latin word meaning “to sift apart.” When we discern, we “sift apart” different possibilities in the hope of finding the one that is most positive and life-giving. To do this, we will engage in a series of steps experienced over a stretch of several weeks – not just one meeting – so that we can be open to the leading of the Holy Spirit. And, most importantly, we will take time to pray…pray…pray. Our time spent in discernment should be deeply enriching, spiritually. I am looking forward to the coming months with great anticipation for what “new beginning” God has in store for St. John’s, and I trust that you are too!!


Come, Holy Spirit, Come!

Pastor Jo





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