Let me take this opportunity to introduce myself to you. In early March, shortly before the corona virus pandemic hit our country in full force, I was asked by our Dean, Pr. Penman, if I would serve as the Bridge Pastor at Faith as Pastor G was slated to move on to her next Interim assignment. In our synod, Bridge Pastors serve part-time between the time when the interim process is completed, and the new pastor is called. I have been a pastor since 1982 and served a congregation in Philadelphia since 1997 until I retired from full time pastoral ministry in 2013. Currently, I serve as the part-time Visitation Pastor at St. Luke Lutheran Church in Devon.
Normally, this would have meant meeting with the Council, staff and other ministry teams and beginning to conduct worship on the Sunday after Easter. Of course, now everything in church and, indeed, in our lives, has changed and changed in ways that none of us could have ever imagined! Last Wednesday, I sat in (via Zoom) on the Council meeting and agreed to pen this letter of introduction. This coming week, I’ll be meeting with the Finance as well as Worship & Music Teams.
We are so blessed to have the technology to proceed with worship, Bible study, prayer opportunities and service even in the midst of these extraordinary and difficult times. Yet even as we live through so many dramatic and, for many, fearful times, we can continue to proclaim that “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, and today and forever.” (Hebrews 13:8) Our relationships can be nurtured and sustained with each other and our neighbors in the community as we live into the promises of our eternal and unchanging God.
We want to make sure that we help anyone in our congregation who might be struggling with loss of employment, reduced employment, having difficulty getting groceries or prescriptions filled, so please call Janet Hill (215-285-6428), Gary Apgar (215-460-0380) or my cell phone (215-285-9106). For those of you who would like to contribute to the food banks (please no food items) both Manna and Keystone are requesting monetary donations at this time. Here are the links if you’d like to help: Keystoneopportunity.org OR https://mannaonmain.org/give-money/donate-now/
Finally, we want to encourage you, as you are able at this time, to support the congregation with your tithes and offerings. While so many aspects of daily life have changed, some things have not. Certain fixed costs and utilities still need to be paid! It’s a perfect time to sign up for online givingor continue to send them to the church office. In these unprecedented times, the blessing of your generosity will ensure that the saving grace of our crucified and risen Lord will continue to be proclaimed and shared in word and service through our congregation!
God’s rich blessings on you and yours as we celebrate the Easter season.
Yours in the Risen Christ,
The Rev. Mary Konopka (please call me, Pastor Mary!)
pr.mary.konopka @gmail.com, 215-285-9106