The busy Advent and Christmas seasons proved to be as hectic but joy-filled as I could have expected or hoped for. It was a joy to be working along side the talented group of leaders and many volunteers who helped us accomplish so much over this time. I treasured so many great conversations after our Christmas Eve services that re-affirmed the gift that is sharing the good news of having this promise made real. I’m also pleased at how we’re continuing to tell this on-going story and how the community is engaging our creative explorations. Here are a few of the things I’ve been working on over the past month…
Looking for Leaders
The Nominating Committee was very busy seeking new leaders to round out the vacancies on our council and in some other key leadership positions in preparation for the elections that take place during the semi-annual meeting at the end of January. The committee was able to nominate folks in most of the key positions going forward with just a few exceptions. Notably, we are still seeking someone to serve as the Congregation Council President. As no one has stepped forward yet, Deb Cordes will remain until the Council can appoint a replacement. The council will also need to appoint someone to serve as a lay delegate to the St. Paul Area Synod Assembly (scheduled for May 17 & 18). We still hope to identify a male young adult (<35) to represent our congregation. Let me know if you’re interested.
Coloring Our Worship
During the season of Epiphany, we’re taking advantage of one of the collaborative resources produced for the “Why Jesus?” series, a coloring book. We’re experimenting with a child-height table and chairs in the sanctuary for a space to color, creating another way for children to be welcomed and included in our corporate worship. Over the course of the first four weeks of the experiment we’ve tried a variety of placements and have been soliciting feedback. Changes to our worship space and patterns always take some amount of adjusting to and this coloring table has been no different. Some early learnings gave included insuring plenty of seating nearby for parents to supervise and to give kids some time to adjust to the new element and the expectations that go along with it. As Epiphany draws to a close at the end of February, we’ll take stock of how we may want to proceed with this or similar initiatives. We welcome your feedback.
A New Look for the Annual Report
The annual report, prepared in preparation for the semi-annual meeting, was re-designed to be a better way of “telling our story.” Included are about thirty short stories alongside many color photos, written and submitted by a long list of our ministry leaders. If they didn’t pick up their copy at church, each family or individual member of the congregation, will receive their report in the mail. I would encourage you to keep your report laying around the house and read a story to two from its pages from time to time. You’ll quickly be reminded of all the ways, big and small, God is working in and through Prince of Peace.
More Storytelling to Come
Speaking of telling stories, our Lenten season will feature even more story telling. In particular, we’re looking for folks willing to tell stories of “journey” during our Wednesday Lenten services with Holden Evening Prayer. Later in February, I look forward to welcoming Pastor Jodi Houge from St. Paul’s Humble Walk to help us imagine how to use story more effectively in our ministry. Pastor Jodi will be presenting at the adult forum on Feb. 24 and then leading a workshop the evening of Feb. 26. If you would like to work on your story telling skills, this is the perfect opportunity. I can’t wait to hear what you’ve got to say.
Thank you for being the church with me this past year and in the year to come!