From the Interim Pastor
Updated: Mar 5
On February 26, we entered the Season of Lent with our Fab 4 Ash Wednesday Service. We shared in the fellowship of our Christian sisters and brothers. We experienced the Imposition of Ashes and Communion. The Lenten Season can be a wonderful time of deep and profound reflection on who and whose we are. We can discover new ways to honor Christ each and every day as we live out our faith.
We will prepare for Easter throughout the forty days of Lent. On the Sunday's I’m leading worship, we will explore some Spiritual Disciplines. Spiritual Disciplines prepare our hearts and minds to be open to the Holy Spirit’s activity. An image might be that we till the garden (probably not until April) to prepare the soil for seeds to grow. The disciplines grow our faith as we deepen our connection to Christ and our neighbors.
Traditionally, the time leading up to Easter was a time of preparation for new Christians who were then baptized and became members as the faith community celebrated the resurrection to new life. The Lenten Season developed to nurture new believers and strengthen existing members to practice our faith and renew connections with our Savior and Lord.
Over the centuries the amount of time fluctuated, but Christians settled on forty days, excluding Sundays leading up to Easter. Remember the forty days, Noah spent 40 days and nights of rain. (Genesis 7) Moses spent forty days with God preparing to receive the Ten Commandments (Exodus 24). Of course, they spent forty years wandering in the wilderness before entering the Promised Land. (Numbers 14, Deuteronomy 8) Jesus fasted and prayed in the wilderness for forty days before being tempted by the Devil. (Matthew 4, Mark 1, and Luke 4)
Also, March and April will be a little more than 40 days of transition. I will be serving as Interim Pastor at both Forest Park and Greenfield Avenue Presbyterian Churches (GAPC). I will be winding down my time with Forest Park with a healthy goodbye. I will be working with Session to secure worship leadership, pastor care coverage, and stability until the time your new pastor arrives. The Pastor Nominating Committee is diligently seeking your next settled pastor. I will be getting to know the members and lay leaders at GAPC exploring the adventures ahead.
Please trust the Lord and be patient with the process. As Presbyterians, we believe the Holy Spirit works through our process and with patience, God will provide the right person as the next congregational leader and pastor. I don’t expect the process to be completed in forty days, but neither do I expect it will be forty years. I do trust that it will all happen in God’s good time.