One of the great joys of Advent is that it is a time of new beginnings. As we begin the new liturgical year, the Church invites us to repent and, with God’s grace, turn our lives once again toward God. Where our lives have been broken by sin, Advent is a season that encourages us to seek reconciliation…with God, with others, and with our self!
Here at St. Paul’s, we are in the midst of our strategic planning. We are discerning together where and how God is calling us to witness to the transforming power of the Gospel. Your hopes and dreams for our future, expressed through small group gatherings, our Congregational Assessment Tool (CAT) survey, and our Visioning CafÈ, has enabled our Pastoral Strategic Visioning Team to identify five goals for our parish life over the next four years: (1) Growth in Membership, (2) Enhance Our Spiritual Vitality, (3) Increase Meaningful Relationships Among Parishioners, (4) Strengthen Christian Education and Spiritual Formation, and (5) Cultivate Outreach to Those Broken by Life Circumstances.
We are now at the point in the process where we are forming Goal Committees for each of the five goals in our strategic plan. I encourage you to read the Strategic Planning Update and Invitation here and prayerfully consider offering your assistance to one of the five Goal Committees.
As we continue our Advent journey, we look forward to celebrating new beginnings at two special gatherings today: our Newcomer Luncheon in the Parish Hall after the 10am service and our Welcome Back Reception for our seasonal members and friends from 5:30 to 7:30 pm at the home of Michael Judd and Ben Small.