Pentecost Sunday 2014
Jesus Christ, ascended on high, has poured upon us his promised Holy Spirit.
Today we bring to a close the active phase of the Expanding Our Serve Campaign (EOS). Announcements will be made during the services concerning the financial goal that has been before us. But as you have heard me say, money is only part of the story of the Campaign. Let me comment on three others:
Prayer: Spiritual advance begins and ends with prayer. What a blessing it was to have daily reminders for EOS prayer sent via email over a period of forty days. Written primarily by Dick Kantzer and Mary Castria, these emails drew all sorts of encouragements for prayer out of 1 Peter 4. In addition, two very successful prayer sessions took place by teleconference. Held over the lunch hour, they provided people the opportunity to pray with others about EOS while not having to leave work.
Broad-based participation: God is praised when every member of the body contributes what is necessary for the body’s growth (Ephesians 4:16). To him be the praise today, since every segment of our congregation has been involved in making pledges to EOS. Both young and old, kids and grownups, have responded, as have university students and alumni. Newcomers to our church have made commitments as well, and in sizable numbers: nearly four dozen new people/families (of course, as with all, anonymous to me) handed in commitment cards.
Leadership base: Church-wide efforts like EOS can be used by the Lord to develop new leaders at Stone Hill. I was delighted to see a variety of people step forward and assume leadership in the campaign. I think, for instance, of Sean Schools, our volunteer videographer who provided three different videos for the campaign. Or Penny Stone and Dezra Richmond, who worked as a model team in coordinating special events during EOS. Meanwhile, it was a joy to have Kim Tilton, who has served our church in many ways over the years, assume a new role this time around, that of coordinating information sessions involving the pastors. And finally, though they are not new as leaders, I want to mention the Counting Team for their many hours of behind-the-scenes service: Steve Fischer, Chris Baldwin, Ann Pfaff, and Mark Lien.
Truly the Risen Lord has been glorified in multiple ways during the EOS Campaign.