The beginning of a new year always provides us the opportunity to look back and look ahead. As we look back over the past year we need to stop and celebrate some significant achievements. After a nine month capital campaign, we were able to resurface our entire church parking lot and add a layer of petromat to help keep new cracks from developing. This is the 5th major capital project the church has completed in the last 4 years (The others include sanctuary carpet, an upgraded sound and video system, new heating and air conditioning in the children’s wing and a new roof!).
While the new roof and heating/air conditioning systems were added into the refinancing of the mortgage, the other three projects have been paid in full thanks to your generosity and faithfulness. We would invite you to continue to give faithfully and generously to the church each week/month so that ministry can continue here and missions can be supported both locally and around the world.
We also celebrate the continued growth of the Faith Church congregation. Worship attendance has increased again this year with an average of 377 each week. This is an increase of 6.5% over last year and a 32% increase since 2008! We have offered 19 different and relevant classes through our 6 week Sunday school rotation and several new small groups started this year and are continuing on into the new year. 2012 also saw the membership of Faith Church rise to over 800! God is moving among us and for this we are humbled and grateful and excited!!
As we look ahead to 2013, we see many new and exciting opportunities in front of us. This month we are expanding our staff with the hiring of Reverend Ellen Scamahorn as our part time Pastor of Visitation. Pastor Ellen is an elder in the United Methodist Church and the pastor at Bald Eagle Valley Community UMC and will continue on in this position, but will also assist with visitation ministry at Faith Church. Pastor Ellen will do visitation with shut-ins both at home and in the nursing homes as well as visiting in the hospitals and assisting with and doing funerals. We are excited to have Ellen’s gifts and faith as part of the life and ministry of Faith Church.
This year will bring continued opportunities for people to deepen their faith through a Lenten Sermon and Small Group series on “The Last Words of Jesus” and then a summer series that will allow us to walk in the footsteps of Jesus. New Sunday school classes will continued to be offered throughout the year as well as Leadership Development and Mission opportunities.
Faith Church continues to be an exciting place to be and we hope you will find ways to connect with God and others, serve Christ and the community, and grow deeper in your faith as together we grow wider and larger through faith sharing. As always, none of this is possible without your ongoing, faithful and generous giving. Your gifts of prayer, hard work and financial resources make Faith Church what it is today and your continued giving in every area will help lead us to where God wants us to be.
As a prayer card said last Sunday, Faith Church is an Awesome Church! I could not agree more. “Thank you God, for where we have come from and for where you are leading us!!”