Looking Back to Look Forward-2019
It is one of my spiritual disciplines to look back over the year and give thanks to God for the highlights in my life. It is now becoming my discipline to do the same for Weedsport Presbyterian Church. To go through the previous year and glean its highlights, with an eye directed towards our future. There are many highlights and I will give a little commentary about each bullet point.
Interviews. This idea of interviewing members came to me a few years ago, driving back from a prayer retreat. I have continue this idea in 2019, interviewing Summer David and Marian Weeks. I like the interview format because we get a glimpse into our friend's faith story. Don't be surprised if you come some Sunday and another person will be interviewed.
Last January at our officer's training event, the question was raised about where the officers sensed apathy. An elder felt the worship service felt a bit stale. This insight took wing and the worship committee surveyed the congregation to better hear what was working and what needed to be improved in our weekly worship services. Some changes have been made, and greater flexibility has been instituted with the liturgy.
Younger Elders joined session. David Seitz and Noah Hickok are now part of our governing board. We have enjoyed their insights and contributions.
David Seitz (and other gracious volunteers) worked hard on the ramp, scraping and painting it.
Summer David brought us great adult and youth activities. February we had a good turn-out to our soap making breakfast event. A week later Summer organized the youth Spaghetti Dinner Fundraiser. It was well received by the community. Summer was the co-director ofVBS, which we hosted at our church. Over the summer, Summer spent countless hours cleaning, painting and reorganizing the youth room. It is now a cozy, wann setting. A youth movie night is planned for today (as I write this report) for youth to enjoy the comfy and inviting room. She also organized a potluck BINGO event, Flick and Float and a Vanderkamp hayride in the Fall.
Community Outreaches like our Turkey Dinner, the Easter Egg Hunt, Vacation Bible School luncheons at Westshore and events at Evergreen. The Easter Egg Hunt was our biggest outreach yet. Our community pulled together and the Weedsport community responded. We joined forces with the director of Fun Beginnings 2, Casie Tomaszeski, to plan a fantastic event. It is a great way to interact with parents and children in our community.
We eajoyed Ecumenical services during Lent and Christmas with our friends at Sennett Federated.
Book Discussion on Canoeing the Mountains started last year and slowly but steadily will continue into 2020. We also had a lenten study on the power of prayer and an advent study on the theme of light.
We had two Baptisms which are always a highlight. Holly Howard was blessed and baptized in March. Evan McEnelly was baptized in June.
All Things Creative keeps plugging along. It is a time of fellowship and creativity. Thanks to Connie Horr for making this weekly time continue. Joe Marshall and Pat Rudney went through lots of church history over several weeks. They spent hours going thru lots of pictures and documents. Thank You!
I enjoyed preaching a series over the summer on the Apostle Paul's prayers. It was something, I felt the Holy Spirit inspired, so I ran with it almost the whole summer long.
Always love the Unservice on Labor Day. Amazing to hear what God puts on the hearts of the folks to share.
In October I spent a week of continuing education at Princeton Seminary on the course called The Art of Transitional Leadership. It was hard work preparing for the class, but I believe the. effort of that time will bring forth fruit as we think about the uncertain future that lies ahead.
Looking ahead to 2020
* The Five-Year Financial Presentation given in November was extremely helpful to see a realistic picture of our church's finances. The time and effort Bill Smith gave to this will enable session to make important decisions as we try to shore up our financial footing for the future.
* Look for more information on our new deacon structure of Care Groups. We will be putting time and energy in coming up with this new program for congregational care and fellowship.
Rev. Mary Anderson