This fall has brought a new reflection for me. On September 1, 2014 I began my ministry with you at First Baptist Church Halifax. It’s hard for me to believe that it has been 5 years already. We have been through so many changes together as a community. Looking back, there have been:
– 4 Senior/Transition/Visitation Ministers (Rev. John Boyd, Rev. Lynn Uzans, Rev. Nelson Metcalfe and of course Rev. Dr. Rusty Edwards)
– 3 Chairs of the Deacons (Jim Stanley, David Morse and Kathy Schwartzentruber)
– 4 Office Administrators/Coordinaters of Congregational and Community Engagement (Alana Foster, Mary Banks, Andrea Gonsolves and Jean Ferguson)
– 1 director of music, Lynette Wahlstrom, thankfully
– 11 of our youth graduated and went off to college or university
– 6 of our youth were baptized, 2 more that I was a part of their classes and service
– 22 weddings that I officiated for
– 15 children were dedicated with their families
– And I have served or presided at many funerals and memorial services
There have been many changes in who is a part of different boards and committees, even some of the programming and services that have come and gone over the years. We have journeyed together through a lot as a community. And, we know that there is also a change that will come over the next few years as we look at the future of our congregation.
Fall is the perfect season that helps us remember the beauty of change. As you look out at the many colours the trees are showing us, we can see that for a time, change comes to make way for new life. Without the courage of the leaves turning, falling off, and replenishing, they wouldn’t survive. We are at a pivotal point in our church, and thankfully we have many dedicated members to help guide us. We have been through change before (turns out a lot over these past 5 years alone!) and have the resources to support each other through this.
The other reason I stop and give thanks over these 5 years, is that even with all the changes in people and programming and leadership, God’s love has remained. God’s promises have remained. “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.” Hebrew 13:8