Pastor's Note | Saturday, July 5th
As we have been moving through the series of messages in the series, Strengthening the Soul of Your Faith, we have seen that Moses was shaped - in part - through experiences of waiting. Forty years in Midian engaged in tending sheep gave Moses a lot of time to think and to process priorities in his life, and to be transformed by the Spirit of God. In waiting we find similar opportunities.
On June 15th the Good Shepherd congregation voted 258 in favor and 5 opposed to accepting the terms of the Joint Solution that dismisses Good Shepherd from the PC(USA) to affiliate with ECO: A Covenant Order of Evangelical Presbyterians. The Session then voted unanimously to accept the Joint Solution. The Joint Solution being approved by the Presbytery and by the Good Shepherd Session means the dismissal is effective barring any challenges in the form of Remedial Complaints.
Unfortunately there have been such Complaints including one that addresses us specifically. A Remedial Complaint may be made by any Presbyter - Elder Commissioner or Pastor Member of Presbytery. The Complaints that have been submitted to and received by the Synod of Southern California and Hawaii's Permanent Judicial Commission Synod PJC) charge that the Presbytery of Los Ranchos has failed in its fiduciary responsibilities by dismissing Good Shepherd and the other seven churches that have, to date, been dismissed by the Presbytery.
This is where the waiting comes in. The Synod PJC has received the complaints and has issued a "stay of execution" of the dismissals. In other words, until the Synod PJC can hear the cases and decide them, the dismissals are not in effect. We are in "wait mode" until the Synod PJC completes its task of hearing the cases and issuing a ruling.
While we wait I encourage us to be patient and prayerful. Pray that the complaints will be deemed to be unsubstantial and that the Synod PJC will rule in favor of the Presbytery of Los Ranchos, thus upholding its dismissal actions. Pray for patience and graciousness as we wait for the outcomes. Pray that we will soon be dismissed to ECO. Pray that we will continue to make new disciples of Jesus Christ regardless o what happens in these next weeks and/or months. Ask the Holy Spirit to encourage us, transform us, and work through us so many will come to trust in Jesus. May we be shaped during this time of waiting.
On another topic, the Session continues to explore the pastoral leadership transition that we are looking at in advance of my retirement. Don Goehner, Pastoral Staffing and Church Consultant, has played an integral role in this process. Don will meet with the Session next week to continue our work. Soon after that we will conduct a Town Hall Meeting at which Don will give an overview of his findings and the Session will provide an update on its work. The date and time for this Town Hall are not yet established. As soon as they are we will let you know.
God is leading the way into the future our Lord has for this church. When we find ourselves in times of waiting w can be assured that the "I AM" who shaped, called, and enabled Moses is leading us.
In the adventure of fatih,