This Sunday, Daylight Saving Time begins. Don’t forget to turn your clock forward an hour.
I can’t wait to see you. I will continue in our Luke: The Passion series that shows us Jesus living out his love and suffering for you and for me. This week we look at Jesus the Servant. He modelled a new way of Kingdom living and died so that we could live it too.
There is a posture to serving.
This week, our future son-in-law, Jon-Paul, got on one knee to ask Anna to be his wife. It was such a beautiful moment. You will see me and Mark still glowing on Sunday. After reflecting on that moment, I was thinking how really, the wife-to-be should get on her knee to say yes. God’s plan for marriage is that husband and wife serve each other.
Sunday we will talk about serving. How Jesus served us… and how he invites us to serve even though our natural inclination is to want to be served.
Sunday, we will also introduce new members. God continues to grow us deep, as we know and follow Jesus, and wide, as more people join our mission of “Inviting All People to Know the Grace of Jesus.”
At our congregational meeting, you heard many exciting updates about our giving and the work of our Deacons, Trustees, and Elders. I wanted to share with you a more thorough update about some personnel additions and adjustments.
First, I am excited for you all to meet Diane Mack, GRACE’s new Business Administrator. She comes with a wealth of experience in financial management and business development. A long-time Bethlehem resident, she is actively involved in the community including serving as President of the Board of Directors of the Friends of the Bethlehem Mounted Police. We are very excited to have her as a part of GRACE Church.
Sue Knarr will officially retire at the end of the month as she helps Diane in this transition. Stay tuned for more information about a celebration of Sue Knarr and her over 30 years of service to our dear church. Thankfully, as she keeps reminding me… She’s not leaving us and will continue to be a part of our GRACE family. We will get to see her at worship every week. I am so grateful for Sue, and also grateful for Amy Dillman who has faithfully served alongside Sue in the finance office.
With Diane coming into the role of the Business Administrator, I am happy to report that Rev. Doug Stewart will fully transition to our Pastor for Mission and Welcome. Doug has been carrying our Mission Ministry for many months. His passion for that area led us to make this transition. We are ready as a congregation to build our Mission Ministry – locally and globally. Mission is integral to the DNA of our church. I’m thrilled that we now will have Doug in this role. Along with mission, Doug will also take the lead in our Sunday morning experience. As we move into the new building, we will need double the volunteers to welcome and serve on Sundays. He might have already asked you to serve. And if he hasn’t, Doug or a member of the Welcome Team will. We want to create a welcoming experience from the parking lot all the way into the sanctuary.
I am happy to report that Jeff Murphy is now our Facilities Director. He will manage the security, cleaning and maintenance of our building, and ensure that our ministries are supported. Stacey Judge is now the Executive Coordinator for the Senior Pastor. Along with serving as my Executive Assistant, Stacey will help me with special projects, and manage our office and administrative assistants. These are well-deserved promotions for Jeff and Stacey. It is a joy to serve with them.
Kyra Thomas, who will finish seminary and be ordained sometime in the fall, will become our Pastor for Discipleship, helping to develop our group life. Kyra has wonderful gifts in developing programs and groups. I am excited to have her help us grow in another area that is such a part of our DNA. Dr. Mark Crumpler will continue in his teaching roles but will turn his focus to our Deacons to further develop our care, connections, communion and prayer ministries. Mark has a shepherd’s heart and will help us grow in these vital areas of our church.
I am so excited about the way our staff team is developing to serve you and GRACE’s mission and ministry. I believe this staff is positioned for our growth as we move into our new church campus.
See you Sunday! It is a privilege to be…
Dr. Marnie Crumpler