19 May Pentecost Sunday
We’ve all heard about the revised guidelines from the Center for Disease Control concerning facial coverings and social distancing for those who have been vaccinated. You can read more about my response and our church’s too that in the previous church blog entry.
It’s providential that Pentecost Sunday is coming in concert with this announcement. Our church will celebrate this historic moment in formation of the church on May 23rd. I’ll be preaching from Acts 2 and talk about the arrival of the Holy Spirit in a new and profound way upon those first followers of Jesus Christ. The same Holy Spirit is at work in our lives today (wear something RED on the 23rd!)
Pentecost is often viewed as the birthday of the church. I’ll make reference to this but also it’s significant in light of the pandemic. This is a also time for a “re-birth” and renewal for the church.
One of the ongoing debates is how many people will be returning to active participation in the life of the church. Some are eager to return, some want to watch the livestream, while others may simply choose not to do either. Our spiritual habits and disciplines have been impacted greatly by the COVID-19 virus, and frequently in a negative way.
The Holy Spirit continues to move in our lives and I’m confident that He is doing a great work among us even (especially) now. There are enough excuses not be involved in church life (these existed prior to COVID), and the challenge is for us to move forward in faith and trust God for what is yet to come.
I’ve been keeping in touch with some of my pastor friends, and one of them helped me with a description for the church in coming out of the pandemic. It is described with four interlocking circles, and the first two are called Re-Gathering and Re-Connecting–this is where our church is and will be for a while. It’s going to take time for people to return and get used to be around each other again.
We’re engaged in personnel searches relating to our Praise Team/Contemporary worship service and now a Minister of Children & Young Families. We are also making renovations to our facilities and investing in our ministries; it’s a good time to be involved in First Baptist Church.
There’s a lot going with the end of school and beginning of summer; it’s very exciting to resume those activities we had to go without last summer. But let’s remember that the work of the church continues through these months by remaining supportive by giving our time, money, and prayers.
Finally, thanks for all your birthday wishes and support of Lucy’s graduation. My family and I are grateful to be part of your lives and that of our community–DC