We having been praying for our neighbor, Hope Lutheran Church, for the past few months, as they studied, prepared and voted on taking the faithful step of becoming in word and deed a Reconciling in Christ [their version of Open and Affirming] congregation within the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America (ELCA).

The congregation voted overwhelmingly in favor of Reconciling in Christ (72% for). Now the work begins for them. There was the expected loss of some congregants. There is the challenge of maintaining the ministry and mission of the church that remains unchanged: reflecting the love of God now even more fully and faithfully.

Hope Lutheran is a strong and faithful congregation. They have an excellent hunger ministry. We take our contributions of food for our narthex to their pantry for distribution to those in need.

We had the great opportunity and privilege of contributing testimony of our experience at an informational session at Hope a couple of months ago. We hope to be an encouragement to our sibling congregation through prayer and anything else they need during this moment of transition. Please pray for them ceaselessly.

Note: We of Community United Church of Christ will be celebrating our 21st anniversary of our faithful response to God’s call to be Open and Affirming at our COMING OF AGE banquet on Friday, April 26, 2019 beginning at 6 p.m. in Hayden Hall.

Peace,

Pastor Ara