Grace and peace to you.
November 11 will mark the One Hundredth Anniversary of the Armistice in the “war to end all wars”. Instead, this war was the gateway to an even more devastating war. An interesting day, November 11. The Christian Church sets aside this day to remember the life of Saint Martin of Tours, a Roman soldier who laid aside his sword because he sensed a call from God to feed and clothe the poor. Perhaps if such a call was pronounced through this armistice by the allied nations who defeated the empire of Germany, the Ottomans and Austro-Hungarians, perhaps the Second World War may have been averted . . . perhaps.
On November 11 Pastor Timm, Assistant to Bishop Satterlee, will preach at Samuel Church marking a renewed initiative to call a pastor to lead the ministry of Samuel. You have affirmed what you want the pastor to be about in his or her work with and among you.
At the same time, the four congregations of Muskegon Metro Ministries, desiring to share the gospel together in some way, shape and form, brought in a consultant who helped both church councils and the general members of Samuel, Our Savior’s, Saint Luke and Immanuel to consider how they might work together in the future.
Just to reiterate – and avert rumors – there was no recommendation for merger or closing any of the congregations. That was not the reason for the consultant being here. We were challenged to think, pray and listen to what God is speaking to us as Lutheran Christians doing ministry in a time when established churches in our city centers are being stressed with low participation, resources and membership.
So please do not listen to rumors. Go to the people who have been working hard to look ahead: your elected Congregation Council, your Call Committee. These are the people who have given much time and effort. Speak with them, share your insights, pray for them, bring your questions and share your time and talents in anyway you are able in various aspects of ministry in this congregation.