"That they all may be one."

John 17:21

"From the President's Corner"

Stephen Schmidt is President of the Church Council

From the President’s corner...

The visioning team has met twice. It has been a rough start and as a leader I take some of the blame and responsibility. However, nothing with great meaning has ever been accomplished without some rough patches, especially with the people of God. Just read your bible. The Israelites were barely out of Egypt when they thought they had made a mistake with pharaoh's army at their heels and complained to Moses and God that maybe they had made a mistake and should have stayed in Egypt. Once within the promised land, the tribes eventually could not get along and split into the northern kingdom of Israel and the southern kingdom of Judah. The disciples, in Jesus presence, quarreled amongst themselves. The early church was never united and in agreement. Paul and the church in Jerusalem, specifically, James the brother of Jesus, did not see eye to eye. We have all the letters of Paul written mostly to churches for correction and exhortation due to contention within the church or what he perceived to be due to false beliefs. Yet in all of these instances, God continued to work with the flawed individuals and groups to bring forth the results he desired. Church is much like family. And relationships and movement within families gets messy, but if we keep God in our hearts and seek what God would have us do and be, we too can achieve what God has in store for us.

This is not going to be a short quick fix if we expect to do it right. It is not for a small group of individuals to decide the future direction and ministry of St. Paul UCC. It is the responsibility and privilege of the entire congregation to pray and rest in God to discern the way forward. The team is currently interviewing a number of potential facilitators to determine if we wish to hire someone to help us in this process or do it without. Our plan is to vision the ongoing ministry of St. Paul, with clear goals and pathways to achieve those goals. This will require your prayers for the members of the team, and your participation, when called upon to help in the process. Feel free to contact me, Pastor Michelle or any member of the visioning team with concerns or interests. Members include Mimi Llamas, Richard Erdmann, Dave Hoffman, Terry and Synthia Kalinowski, Gus Kuether, Sandy and Rusty Wagner.

Stephen Schmidt
St. Paul Council President 2021