Well I just got home from our Fourth of July Weekend “Name That Tune Sunday” worship service. For those of you that missed it, you missed a very fun hymn sing. The surprise to me was how many of the “oldies” were requested. (You folks should mark your calendars for our “Rockin the Oldies Sunday” on August 27th.) Thank you to Andy Toth for leading us in worship. Also, thank you to all members that have stepped in to lead worship or preach while we are in this time of transition. The good news on that front is that you won’t need to do that for the rest of the summer. Thanks to the dogged efforts of our Church Administrator, Larry Gnatzig, we have secured Supply Pastors for the remaining weeks of July and all the weeks of August. Better still there will be some consistency with a few Supply Pastors covering multiple Sundays.
With regard to the call of an Interim Pastor, I can say that we are finally in conversation with Synod about that and things are at least beginning to move. There really are no details to report beyond that right now. But, as I said last month, “When I know, you’ll know.”
There are various summer events on the horizon. Our next outdoor worship is scheduled for July 16th. Pastor Paul Ihlendfeld has indicated that “Variety is the spice of life” and that he would love to lead us in worship under our tent. In addition, your Council is committed to putting in extra effort to increase the attendance of both members and visitors at our next Community Picnic on August 2nd. Attendance at the June picnic was very disappointing. If you have ideas on how to reach out to community members or groups, please let us know. Also if you have ideas for games or activities that would make this event more fun for everyone, or better yet if you would like to volunteer to help, please reach out to me or any council member. Our plan is to use the Community Picnic as the kickoff for a drive to collect school supplies for the students and teachers at Journeys School. Specific items most requested by teachers at our Teacher Appreciation Luncheon in May include; Expo markers (all colors), glue sticks, Post-it Notes, headphones, individually packaged snacks, and Amazon gift cards. So, keep that list in mind as you are out and about shopping in the next month or so.
You know the role of Council President has its ups and downs like any volunteer position, or job for that matter. It would be easy to get disheartened when attendance at an event or on a particular Sunday is down. But the spirit and love of this Congregation does not let that take hold. I’m continually being uplifted by the kind words and offers to help at this time. I want to thank all the small groups that are hard at work gathering data and information that we will need to complete our Ministry Site Profile. I will be asking them, and perhaps some of you, if they would like to be a part of our Mission Exploration Team that will formally complete that form and other work once an Interim Pastor is called. I am confident that people will step up. I also know that with some extra effort we can have a very successful August Community Picnic and that we, as always, will continue to be the church!
I was touched by the lyrics of one of the hymns requested during the hymn sing. The hymn was We All Are One in Mission. Let these lyrics be our prayer going forward. “We all are one in mission; we all are one in call, our varied gifts united by Christ, the Lord of all. A single great commission compels us from above to plan and work together that all may know Christ’s love.”