October 19, 2016
As always, I have to tell you how thankful I am to be here with you in Ellensburg. Your loving witness to the demonstrator on Sunday morning two weeks ago was inspiring. I truly believe that only love can conquer hate, but oh how hard it is. The love of Christ was palpable and I thank you for it.
First, I want to start off with the aspect of my work I’m most disappointed about.
Our worship statistics are down this October by 6% or 4 people. I can’t pretend that this doesn’t discourage me. I will tell you that my door is always open and if there are ways that you believe I can make a greater impact in worship I’d love to hear them. I believe in the ministries of this church and I want to help this congregation grow in healthy spirituality, connection to God, and one another.
Second, I want to let you know what I’ve been up to besides my regular scheduled work of Bible Studies, worship, and visitation. I’m not always in the office, but that doesn’t mean I’m not working in this community on your behalf. Here are some of the events I’ve been working on:
- I was the keynote speaker at the PNW UMW yearly meeting on the west side earlier this month. The other speaker they brought in, Sandy Wilder, was from my home church in Austin! It was a really wonderful event and I’m so proud of the work that the UMW does in the world.
- Currently working with Pastor Don Green of First Christian Church to organize the Cold Weather Shelter for this season. We have had 5 trainings so far this month.
- Working with Pastor Frank Johnson of Chestnut Street Baptist Church, on behalf of the Kittitas County Ministerial Association, to craft a statement about the recent KKK activity.
- Earlier this month I worked with the newly formed Interfaith Alliance to present our first International Peace Day worship service.
- I am serving on the 7 Rivers Leadership Team where we are currently working on a plan for the district!
- Next week I will spend time at Lazy F to meet with my fellow candidates for full membership in the PNW Annual Conference. This is a required meeting as I move towards full ordination as an elder.
I am truly blessed to be your pastor and I will continue to seek ways to further the work of God in Ellensburg through this vibrant congregation. As we continue to grow in our love and faith of God and one another, know that I am, and will always be thankful for all of you. I am continuing to develop my own leadership skills and hope you will grant me grace when I fail and keep me in your prayers, as you are in mine.
Pastor Jen Stuart