President's Report to the Members of Good Shepherd UCC
Dear Fellow Christians:
2009 was a challenging year for our country, state and local community. The recession had many impacts on all of our lives. Through it all Good Shepherd was here for its members and community. I'm so proud of the quality Christian service this church provides day in and day out. Even though we are starting this year deep in the "red" financially, we are starting in the "black" spiritually. Let us go out and make 2010 a better year.
As of the annual meeting later this month, I will have completed my sixth consistory year and will need to be replaced. How quickly those six years have passed. It seems like just yesterday when I was a quiet rookie sitting in on consistory meetings and not saying a word. As the years went by I became more engaged with and involved with the consistory process and am far different than that meek rookie member. It has been a good time and I highly recommend trying consistory to anyone who may get the chance. I'm sure I will think about joining again after a few years off.
I'd like to share a few consistory memories I have had over the past six years of service to this church I love. My main highlight was my involvement in the Renew, Revive, Rejoice campaign. I co-chaired the campaign along with Bo Bernhard. We had a great time working together. The RRR idea was born in early 2005 during our normal consistory meetings and it extended all the way to November of 2008 with our 3 year celebration service. So many great things happened during that span. Money was raised, projects were finished and fellowship and friendships were plentiful. It was great to see RRR become an all-church effort and theme.
The saddest part of my time on consistory occurred this past summer when the church experienced a major cash flow crisis that basically drained us down to our last penny in the bank. Meetings occurred from July to October and every angle of the budget was looked at. The decision to not renew Pastor Gary's contract for 2010 was a tough one for many on consistory. Personally, I loved having Gary on staff. I enjoyed every aspect of his ministry and I wish him well with his new position. I can truly say to my fellow church members that it was strictly a business decision to cut major expenses to try and keep the doors open to serve. Those months and meetings were certainly the most challenging times of my consistory life. I hope we emerge as a stronger church as a result of the hard choices made. Much work remains and I know Pastor Dennis will need many lay leaders to help him fill Gary's void.
In closing, let us give thanks for our beautiful church and the opportunity to worship within its walls. Best wishes for a great 2010 and THANK YOU for your ongoing support of Good Shepherd UCC Boyertown. Enter to worship and depart to serve.