Message from the Pastor
It was last year at the visioning meeting when I shared my idea of “Fellowship for 7” with church. After evaluating some existing programs, I enlisted a couple of new ministry ideas. One of those new ideas was “Fellowship for 7.”
Several observations that I made prompted this idea. I noticed that we had visitors on a regular basis. Visitors have been walking into our door step continually. But very few of them have seemed to stay with us. Even after new members joined our church, they seemed to be drifted away without finding a group that can shepherd them into a deeper fellowship of existing members. I thought to myself, “If we have a small group where they can be plugged in, would they feel more welcomed? “ “Would that create a sense of belonging if they could be a part of regular meetings?”
I know many existing members always welcome visitors and new members. It is rarely felt at other churches what we have; extraordinary warmth, generosity, and welcoming spirit to whomever they are. Very often, I heard from existing members that they would reach out to new people, but they would feel shy. So I asked to myself, “What if we build a structure to embrace them, shepherd them, and follow up with them?”
Not only will new visitors be benefited by this small group but also us. One of the most amazing gifts of church, faith community is that we are intergenerational. It is a rare gift that all different generations could share our life journey from children to senior citizens. As Mr. Jim Bell made an announcement as a representative of Lay Leadership Committee, younger people can learn wisdom from the older generation. And older people can receive renewed energy from the younger ones, which will enable them to keep on going. It will be wonderful to bring different generations to a small group, where different phases of life journey will intersect through support and love; fellowshipping with youngsters who are in search of their direction, younger adults and middle aged members who build up their careers and raising their family, and elderly members who have wealth of wisdom of life.
It is true that we can do more when we team up with others. It is true that our life will be enriched when we open ourselves to friends, old and new. It is true that God blesses us through people, through sharing, and through growing together.
This new ministry will be launched in October. Thank you to those who signed up for participating in this new ministry. Thank you to Matsumoto family for taking care of sign ups, and all who are willing to team up with me and others for God’s glory.
With prayers and hope,
–Rev. Sunyoung Park