There‚Äôs SNOW much going on at Chapel Hill!
I’ve been here 32 years and never seen anything like it! I walked out to knock the wet snow off a favorite tree and the drifts were up over my knees. Incredible! I have actually enjoyed Snowmageddon! Our son, Cooper, lived with us for the duration of the event. Cyndi made hearty blizzard-worthy meals. And we worked off a lot of those calories shoveling snow and going on adventure walks in conditions we are likely never to see again around here.
That being said, this enforced sabbatical has also been something of a mess. Our neighborhood streets are a slush-fest. So is the church parking lot (although our great facilities team is rectifying that even as I write.) We cancelled worship services last weekend, only the second time that has happened in my tenure here. And even though we haven’t been able to come into the church offices for most of this week, your staff and many, many Chapel Hill volunteers have been doing a lot of improvising to keep things moving forward. I’m grateful to them, and I know you are, too!
So, here’s an update:
- I know, I know—we teased you about our exciting new initiative, the “bittersweet” nature of it and the upcoming pastoral changes that will result. We were going to unveil it all last weekend and obviously could not. Sorry ‘bout that! This is such an important and significant announcement; it really deserves a weekend devoted to unpacking it. That weekend will be March 2-3. Save the dates! You won’t want to hear this second-hand.
- STILL—even though we could not worship in the same room, we worshiped together via Facebook Live. You can watch it again or for the first time HERE. Didn’t Pastor Megan do a great job of leading us in a time of Bible study and devotion on Sunday morning? I felt connected to all of you, albeit digitally!
- AND—this weekend I have some wonderful news for you that is ONLY sweet; there is no “bitter” to it. Again, it pertains to a member of our pastoral team and you won’t want to hear THIS second-hand, either! Do everything you can to be at one of our worship services to hear this great announcement.
- Speaking of wonderful news, Pastor Ellis will be installed as our new Associate Pastor of Weekend Services during Saturday evening service. Even if you aren’t normally a Saturday worshiper, you might want to join us that night for this important moment in the life of the Whites—and of our church.
- Our high school crew, a total of 115 of them, are flying out for Mexico this weekend for their annual mission trip. Keep them in your prayers!
- We are also sending out the RZIM Go Team to the University of Virginia this Saturday; pray for them as well!
- Our Cambodia Go Team returned this week (complete with delayed and cancelled flights—they got back to Gig Harbor at 3:00 am!). We are grateful for their service and look forward to hearing about their trip in the future.
Like I said, lots of exciting things happening! We will just head-fake the snow and slush and keep right on rolling!
One important matter to mention: we are running significantly behind in our General Fund giving. Your support of our Beyond These Walls initiative has been incredibly generous; thank you! And as you know our worship attendance has averaged up over 20 percent year to year, which is terrific. But our giving to the General Fund (you know, salaries, toilet paper, snow removal equipment)—that is down. And canceling worship last weekend did not help.
If you are behind in your giving, could I ask you to catch up? And an extra gift would certainly be appreciated. And if you consider Chapel Hill your home but have not yet supported us financially, now would be a wonderful time to start. All you have to do is review the bullet points above to come up with all kinds of reasons to support God’s work at Chapel Hill. You can give HERE.
I look forward to being with you this weekend. We will continue in our journey through the Gospel of Mark. We will share some VERY exciting news—and we will worship a great and gracious God.