This past week, Eugene Peterson died and went to be with Jesus. You may know his name as the author of the Bible translation, The Message. Eugene Peterson had an impact on me and many other pastors with his inspiring and challenging books on pastoral work and the life of discipleship.
This Sunday, we will continue in our 40 Days series, taking up the 3rd purpose — MADE TO BECOME looking at what it means to be a disciple of Jesus Christ. I thought it appropriate to share Peterson’s words about discipleship from his book, A Long Obedience in the Same Direction:
Christian discipleship is a decision to walk in his ways, steadily and firmly, and then finding that the way integrates all our interests, passions, and gifts, our human needs and eternal aspirations. It is the way of life we were created for.
You were made to be a disciple of Jesus. You were made to follow Him. Sunday we will take a look at how Jesus himself painted a picture of a life of following Him. I am really challenged by Jesus’ words as I have been preparing this message.
Commitment Sunday November 4
Many of you have already received our 2019 Commitment materials in the mail. If you didn’t receive them, we will have packets available on Sunday morning at BECA. On November 4, we will together make our 2019 commitment to the mission and ministry of GRACE Church Bethlehem. An ECO Presbyterian Community. In the services, we will bring forward our commitment cards. You may also mail your commitment cards or make your commitment online byclicking here. I hope you will join me in making your commitment and considering increasing your pledge. We have many exciting plans that will take resources and I am so encouraged by your generosity. You are making a difference as you invest in God’s work at GRACE.

Master Planning Update

This is a very exciting season in the life of our church. As I shared with the congregation, after an extensive interview process, the Session has approved the committee’s recommendation and hired Merriman Holt Powell Architects to guide us in our Master Plan process.
Merriman Holt Powell Architects has a wealth of experience leading churches around the country in master planning and in church building and renovation. Other than their obvious architectural skills, this firm is particularly skilled in listening and engaging people in the congregation in the master planning process.
Bill Merriman and Jim Powell will be on site for their first deep-dive with our congregation beginning Thursday, November 15 through Monday, November 19. During their visit, there will be three Grace Church Vision Gatherings. At these gatherings, you will have the opportunity to participate in the master planning process, interact with our architects, pray and dream about our future, and share your own ideas. I hope you will RSVP for one of these gatherings today. Click here to reserve your space.
God continues to lead and guide us. It is such a joy to be your pastor. Look forward to worshiping with you and shaking your hand after service.

Yours in Christ,

Dr. Marnie Crumpler, Senior Pastor