2 September 2022 / Greetings Yorkshire Church!
As we prepare to celebrate the unofficial end of summer, Labor Day weekend, there is much to update you on. Yorkshire Church has been a busy place, and you can see that by simply driving by our facility, or looking at the pictures in our weekly announcements!
Today (Friday), we complete our eleventh week of the building renovation project. Our tentative timeline completion schedule reflects a mid-September completion date, but I suspect it will be closer to the end of September. This is not due to a lack of effort, but moreso the additional work that has been necessary to address unforeseen obstacles and challenges. If you have the opportunity to stop by and take a look around the building and in the fellowship hall, you will be able to appreciate all of the hard work that our team has accomplished. Special thanks to Steve Spangler for his countless hours dedicated to this project!
As you may remember, the project estimate was about $267,000 which included a 20% contingency for unforeseen obstacles as well as additional improvement opportunities that reveal themselves during the construction process. At this point, the project is still well within the budgeted target. I believe with the addition of some outdoor lamp posts along the ramp, some enhancements to the ramp and retaining wall, as well as some finishing touches, we will be very close to our initial estimates. (For reference, we established a $275,000 credit facility with Traditions Bank).
At this point, the church is only paying the interest on the monies that we are utilizing for the project. We get a monthly bill from the primary contractor, Keller Construction. At this point we have paid just about $100,000 in construction costs. Once the job is completed, the final amount will be calculated, and the interest payments will convert to loan payments. We anticipate these payments to be approximately $2,000 per month. It is our hope that we will be able to make these payments out of the building fund account which is supported by your additional gifts to the “Building Fund.” This can be designated utilizing any of the standard means that you currently utilize for giving. Through additional giving to the “Building Fund,” we can continue to allocate our traditional income to the ministries that we are called to serve and the many other critical maintenance, repairs and improvements that our facility currently requires.
We are planning additional important investments in our facility. One major item is the addition of fire detection equipment throughout the building. We currently have no smoke detectors within the church, except for the kitchen area and hallway. During a planning session where we discussed our Fire Drill process for the Preschool, we realized that we have no smoke detection system in the Education wing to alert our teachers and staff in the case of a fire. We recently had a local Fire inspector review our facility and provide us guidance with how to remedy this situation.
We also need to continue to address our parking lot lighting for security purposes. Although the new renovations will provide ample protection for that side of our facility, we have several other areas where the current lighting fixtures no longer work (lamp posts outside sanctuary doors, office doors, and our primary entrance). In the area of lighting, we are also seeking proposals to replace the current lighting for the steeple with more efficient LED lighting fixtures which will be offset by a reduction on our electric bill.
Our parking lot is in need of significant repair which will include crack repair and resealing. The estimate for this project is $16,000. And there are many other areas of focus that need to be addressed ensuring no shortage of workload for our Trustee team going into the Fall! So, as you can see, any gifts to the “Building Fund” will be greatly appreciated, greatly needed, and will be put to good use!
In ministry news, our C.L.I.M.B. children’s Sunday School program is off to a great start. This program is for preschool through 2nd grade students and is a two-hour time of interactive learning and fellowship for our children. Each Sunday, from 9-11AM, children participate in what would look most like a day at Vacation Bible School which includes music, singing, crafts, snacks, and of course, Bible lessons. We hope that this program grows to serve not only current Yorkshire families, but to also be an outreach into our community where folks can drop off their children to participate. This will free them up to worship at 9AM and take advantage of our many adult Sunday School programs, or for others, to allow their children to have the opportunity to participate, even if they choose not to attend other church activities.
Our Preschool season started this past week with “Summer Fun Days” for our 4-year-olds on Wednesday, and our 3-year-olds on Thursday. Once again, we are blessed with wonderful children and families. What have been generally quiet hallways (except for the echoes of jackhammers, saws, hammers, dump trucks and earth moving equipment) are now filled with the joyful noise of our preschool children! Our preschool director Julie Mann has done an incredible job in conjunction with her staff of teachers in ensuring that our classrooms are ready and our curriculums are robust. The children arrived this week, but our preschool staff has been very busy for several weeks in preparation. I had the opportunity to meet with many of our students’ parents at our Preschool Parent’s meeting on Monday evening and again as they dropped off their children. Many commented on how happy they are to have a school like Joyful Noise where their children can learn important life skills in addition to Christian education. Recently, the preschool team made a list of what Joyful Noise’s core values are: Small Class Sizes, Dedicated Teaching Staff, Hands on Learning, Christian Education, Family Atmosphere, and Joy-filled Classrooms. These values are made possible by the wonderful support that the preschool receives from our church fellowship. This is a ministry that we can all be proud of! Go JNCP Team!
Next Sunday, September 11th, we will again celebrate Rally Day. This is a day where we come together to celebrate our fellowship with one another as well as our community. We utilize this day to kick-off our Fall season. We will be introducing you to our Sunday School teachers as well as our Preschool teaching staff. We have invited our preschool families to join us as we celebrate how God has brought us all together in ministry for a time such as this. We will do this with ONE combined service at 10:00AM which will be followed by outdoor celebrations from 11AM to 3PM. This will include music by Steven Courtney Band of Friends, Food Trucks, Bounce House, Face Painting and many games and activities. Rumor has it that there may even be a dunk tank again this year…(…really?)
I hope that everyone that is able will choose to come next Sunday to share in this great day of worship, fellowship, and sharing in all that God is doing through Yorkshire Church. It also gives us a great opportunity to meet many of our community neighbors!
Have a great day and a great week! Peace and Blessings!
125 Edgewood Road, York, PA 17402 • (717)755-4952 •
21 July 2022 / Greetings Yorkshire Church!
We enjoyed our week of vacation last week which included online worship participation to hear Bud’s great messages! On the 10th I watched from a bench on a dock (online) which was a part of our rental property, and on the 17th, Holly and I actually came to Yorkshire to simply worship with the fellowship. Both were great blessings! Our time in the Finger Lakes region of New York was very relaxing and we had opportunities to spend quality time with our family throughout the week.
But, as they say, it is good to be back and this week has again been a busy one. Of course the most obvious activity happening at our church is the renovation process. We did not move a lot of dirt this week outside, but significant work has been happening on the inside preparing for the construction of the new restroom facilities and the installation of a new water service to replace the old, outdated one. You can enjoy the pictures in the weekly announcements! Next week, work will again shift to the outside and additional grading and ramp preparation work will continue.
Our public proclamation of our process is “We’re Opening New Doors.” This of course is a literal point as we are doing just that with the new ADA access ramp and door into the fellowship hall. But I would like to think that this is also a great mantra to go into the Fall and “Back-to-School” time period in a few months (not rushing the summer). We can consider that we are “opening new doors” to new people in our community. We may be “opening new doors” to new relationships with Jesus Christ within our fellowship and our community. We may be “opening new doors” to serving our community and the missions that we are called to support. We may be “opening new doors” to our own participation in our church’s ministries and activities. We may be “opening new doors” in our personal faith journey endeavoring into new Bible study groups, or a small group fellowship. Maybe we will simply “open new doors” in our hearts to spend focused time in the Word of God and an enhanced prayer life. In all of these things, may we simply open new doors within our hearts for Worship of God. Two verses come to mind when I think about doors:
Revelation 3:20: “Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me.”
John 10:9: “I am the door; whoever enters through me will be saved. They will come in and go out, and find pasture.”
Although we may consider doors in many ways, our primary focus as a church must be on the door of which Jesus speaks in these scriptures. First, it is Christ that is seeking a relationship with us and for those of us who have opened the door, we enjoy an unmatched joy in our communion with God through His communion with us. It is through our joy in this same communion that we shine His light to those that do not yet know that such a relationship with God is possible. So, when we say we are “Opening New Doors,” the opportunities for Yorkshire Church are not only possible, but they can also a great opportunity for us to bring glory to God in all that we do!
A quick update on the Youth Ministry position. We continue to seek the right candidate to serve this valuable ministry of our church. We currently have two candidates that we are speaking to and a sub-team of Staff Parish will be meeting with one of the candidates next week! Keep this need in our church in your prayers!
The Finance Team met last week while I was on vacation to review our financial posture through the first sixth months of the year. Our financial status through June 30th is as follows:
January 2022 through June 2022
Balance: $ -12,739
As you can see, we are currently in a position where our expenses are exceeding our income. There are two primary culprits for this: 1) Utilities. We have spent over $8,200 more this year in electric and gas than last year due to rate increases. 2) Maintenance & Repair. We continue to need to do repair and maintenance on our facility. We have spent over $13,000 this year in this category compared to about $5,400 last year at this time.
The following observation was noted in the minutes of the Finance Team meeting: “The Committee briefly discussed the increase in weekly attendance, yet the very slight decline in giving…” So, although we are growing in our attendance and activity, we are now financing a portion of our operational expenses out of our savings. Some of this is planned in relation to some of the repairs and structural improvements to our facility, but it also gives us an area that we need to monitor as we continue to invest in our ministries and “opening of doors.”
One of the areas that we have been reaching out to the fellowship for is the area of volunteers. As we launch a new focus area on children’s ministry “CLIMB” on Sunday mornings, we have a need for folks to staff the nursery. While our efforts in this area have filled many of the Sunday morning needs, we are left with several Sundays where we have no volunteers to meet this need. The option that we are considering is to hire additional staff to work on Sunday mornings to provide nursery care. The challenge here is that while we grow in our attendance and ministry, we are doing so with less income, which limits our ability to finance such additional staffing long term. It is my hope that we can meet the needs of our nursery care without creating an additional staff position and fill it with volunteers from the fellowship. Currently, the need for nursery care is limited, but if we don’t prepare for it, we won’t be ready when we have the need. (We are also have needs in the Media Center). Please let Tiffany Ivie or any of the Greeters know of your interest in volunteering!
Although I continue my plea for additional volunteers to support our ministry needs and growth, I want to acknowledge all of our team members that make what we do possible! From the Media Center volunteers to our Sunday School teachers, Greeters and Ushers, Money Counters and Praise Team and Choir vocalists, you are APPRECIATED!
Have a great day and a great week! Peace and Blessings!
125 Edgewood Road, York, PA 17402 • (717)755-4952
7 July 2022, Good Day Yorkshire Church!
What a great day of Worship we experienced this past Sunday as we acknowledged the great gift of freedom that God has provided to us as Americans. It was a blessing to give God thanks through some patriotic music as well as honor an Air Force veteran who worshipped with us who recently celebrated his 102nd birthday. It is always a blessing to meet and worship with a member of the Greatest Generation- especially a WWII veteran!
It has been an exciting few weeks at the church! Our renovation project is well underway now! There has been some preliminary grading work outside and our interior perimeter drains have been installed. You can see pictures in this week’s announcements. I met our contractor team members from Keller Construction, Fitz & Smith, Dietz & Nauman and American Waterproofers as they endeavor on our project and have been impressed by their professionalism. We are blessed to have a great team working on our behalf!
Over the next few days, as weather permits, there will be a great deal of excavation occurring at the church. During this time, we may experience breaks in our internet service as Comcast will be working on relocating our lines which will require interruptions in service. If you find that you are unable to contact the church or if you have problems with viewing the livestream over the next week or so, please be patient with us as we work through this phase of the project. I can promise that any interruptions will be brief.
As I mentioned in my last What’s Brewing, we have a new VBS-style Sunday School program starting in the next few weeks to serve our children’s ministry. This is requiring additional time spent by many of our teachers and volunteers. We are very thankful for their commitment of time and energy! Please note Rick Focht’s article in this week’s announcements. With this program, many of our folks are taking on additional volunteer responsibilities which is taking them from other volunteer positions. We currently have need for more volunteers to serve as Greeters, Media Center Support, Teachers and Teacher Assistants, Youth Group assistants, and Nursery Care. I would ask you to pray about participating in some of these great opportunities to serve our church! If you would like to serve in any of these areas, please contact me, the office, or any of our ushers and/or Greeters on Sunday mornings. They will let us know of your interest and we can contact you to get you plugged in! These are exciting times at Yorkshire and I believe the only limitations we may face in the future will be our ability to support our ministries from within.
The Nominations & Leadership Team will be holding a meeting in the next few weeks to discuss our leadership slate for next year. If you have an interest in becoming involved with the leadership of the church, please let me know so we can find a way to get you on board. I will also be speaking with our current leaders to gain an understanding of their interest in continuing in their roles. This is a very important process within any church.
What makes a great church? Well, there is really only one answer for that from a theological standpoint, and that is the worship of the church. Is the church a Bible-teaching, Christ-centered church that loves one another as Christ loves the church and is growing in their relationship with Him. This is the true measure of an effective church. Read Acts 2:42-47 to validate this point.
An element of Yorkshire church that is important to consider as we strive to be “great” as described above is theparticipation of the body. Whether in leadership or as a volunteer, each part of the church brings something with them that results in our ability to worship as we are called to do. The apostle Paul teaches this in his letter to the Christian church in Corinth. I see his words as an affirmation of how the church is to carry out its love and devotion to Jesus Christ as a result of the gifts that He gives us. Consider this as we look at Paul’s writing in 1 Corinthians 12:4-14:
“There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit distributes them. There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. There are different kinds of working, but in all of them and in everyone it is the same God at work.
Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. To one there is given through the Spirit a message of wisdom, to another a message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues, and to still another the interpretation of tongues. All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he distributes them to each one, just as he determines.
Just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its many parts form one body, so it is with Christ. For we were all baptized by one Spirit so as to form one body—whether Jews or Gentiles, slave or free—and we were all given the one Spirit to drink. Even so the body is not made up of one part but of many.”
(Consider this in context with John 14:12-31 from our Sermon series)
So, as we plan for the future, part of what we can plan to accomplish through the programs we support will be based on how the body of church feels called to use the gifts and talents that have been bestowed upon them. If we have 15-20 volunteers that are handling the various needs of the church, then we will be able to support programs that require 15-20 volunteers. If we have 25-30 volunteers, then we can plan on programming and ministries that have a need for this many folks and so on. Currently, we are looking to grow into ministries to serve the Yorkshire fellowship which are requiring more volunteers than we have, which over time will lead to burnout. It is important that our leadership evaluate all that we are doing based on our real capabilities and adjust accordingly. I have sometimes heard that a person does not get involved because they have not been asked, so I want to make it official, I am asking each of you to pray about how God may be calling you into service in the church!
Holly and I are looking forward to our vacation which will be from July 9th through the 17th. The church will be blessed as Reverend Bud Bish will be providing the message on Sunday the 10th and the 17th. I look forward to enjoying worship on the livestream from the Finger Lakes of New York!
Have a great day and a great week! Peace and Blessings!
-pastor dave. email@example.com 717-858-5870
16 June 2022, Greetings Yorkshire Church!
What a great week at Yorkshire Church as we cross the midpoint of June! We are in the “summer” season of the church when things typically slow down a bit, but this is not the case here! Here is a summary of the exciting things happening within our church and our ministries.
On Monday evening, our Children’s ministry team met to continue discussions on programs to enhance our children’s Sunday School programs. An idea that was tossed around a few weeks ago by this same team was to consider a “VBS-type” format for the Children’s Church (9:15 – 10AM) and the Sunday School hour (10:15- 11AM), combining those time periods into one, two-hour session which would ultimately be run as a VBS-style format. This would include teaching times, crafts, snacks, music, media and various activity stations located around the designated rooms in the Education wing. Activities would begin at 9AM and continue through 11AM allowing parents to attend both 9AM worship and Sunday School, while their children are receiving Christian education and enrichment through a fun and interactive program! The name for our new program will be “CLIMB,” Children Learning Important Messages from the Bible. We hope other children in our community will become involved as well! Thanks to Rick Focht, our Education Team Chair and those involved with teaching, leading and participating in our Children’s Ministry programs! (Barb Snare, Rachel Fry, Lexi Morrow, Kristin Berman, Laurie Mink, Julie Mann, Laura Blackwood, Debra Why).
On Tuesday evening, our Joyful Noise Christian Preschool (JNCP) Board of Directors held their quarterly scheduled meeting. Discussions were held regarding the very successful 2021-22 school year, which was validated by several survey response forms submitted by parents of the students. One of the core values that was discussed was the focus on the Word of God in the teaching curriculum. A recognized value of JNCP is the Christian, Bible-based teaching focus, small class size and affordable tuition. Our students benefit from a highly professional and dedicated staff who are dedicated to each student’s growth over the course of the year. As a ministry of Yorkshire Church, JNCP continues to share the Gospel message of Jesus Christ with the young folks of our community 5 days a week, and next year, the Preschool is planning on offering a summer session as our outreach continues to grow. We celebrate this ministry of the church and the difference it is making in the lives of our students and their families! (Our Preschool Board of Directors are: Barb Snare, Chair, Rick Focht, Vice-Chair, Laurie Mink, Secretary, Julie Mann, Preschool Director, Carol Hightman, Suzanne Robertson, Tara Winter, and Dave Kominsky, Pastor).
Also, on Monday evening, a sub-group from our Finance Team met to review and select the Financing Proposals from 5 local banks for our Fellowship Hall Repair and Renovation project. All of the financing institutions offered us very positive proposals which was an indication of their desire to partner with Yorkshire Church. The review team (Doug Berman, Charlie Hoffman, Elke Yingling, and Jim Valentine) considered each proposal carefully and Traditions Bank was selected as our finance partner for the project. With this decision, our project is ready to move forward. Steve Spangler, our Fellowship Hall Renovation Project Leader has scheduled a kick-off meeting with the various construction contractors (Keller Construction, Dietz & Naumann, and Spangler & Boyer) on Wednesday, June 29th and construction will begin shortly after that! It has been a long process to get to this point but it has been a very good one. As Yorkshire Church, we are blessed to have the leaders that we do, and their commitment to our fellowship is so appreciated!
In the area of our church finances, the good news is that through the month of May, 2022, we are operating in a manner that has allowed us to pay all of our bills and expenses with the income that we have received. But we can see that our income vs our expenses is tightening up significantly.
Jan through the end of May 2022 for Yorkshire Church & Joyful Noise Christian Preschool:
In this number, our monthly offerings have increased over the same period last year by only $531 while our expenses have risen by $22,746. This is made up of many areas, I’ll highlight a few.
Natural Gas: +6,100
Building Maint: +9,979
Other areas of increase were budgeted which include Missions, Staffing (Additional Preschool teachers, Music positions, cost of living increases), but were offset by areas of cost reduction by design. So you can see that of the $22,746 dollars of increased expenses, energy and fixing our building accounted for the majority of it.
With the commencement of our Fellowship Hall project, we anticipate the debt service to be in the vicinity of $2,000 per month which will ramp up through the end of the year as construction expenses are received and paid for. We do anticipate significantly lower natural gas expenses over the next several months as we won’t be heating the church as well as we are hopeful that we have a significant reduction in maintenance and repair expenses through the end of the year (we have an aging facility…).
So, I share this information with you to let you know that our Administrative, Finance, and Trustee teams continue to manage our finances and facility in a manner that we are operating well within the means of the blessings that we receive, even while we expand our ministries and grow as a church. But we are facing significantly higher expenses in categories that we are somewhat unable to control as far as what is going on in our general economy with the levels of inflation that we are experiencing. We will continue to manage our resources in a prayerful and discerning manner and I am tremendously confident in the leadership and expertise that God has blessed Yorkshire with!
With all of these things in mind, I would also ask that you continue to pray and discern about your continuing support of the church and our ministries through your ongoing gifts and contributions. It is our hope that even in our difficult economic times, that we can continue to grow in our ministry and our outreach to those in our community, while maintaining our facilities in an effective, yet efficient manner.
We have so much to be thankful for as the fellowship of Yorkshire Church. God
is blessing us with new ministries, new opportunities and an overwhelming Spirit of Joy in all that we do while bringing new people into our fold. As always, if
you have any questions about the content or information that has been provided
in this letter, please feel free to reach out. I am thankful to be a part of the ministry and fellowship that we are being called to as Christ’s body, in fellowship with Him, and in communion with the Holy Spirit!
Have a great day and a great week! Peace and Blessings!
125 Edgewood Road, York, PA 17402 • (717)755-4952 • www.yorkshirechurch.org
10 June 2022, Greetings Yorkshire Church!
I am enjoying our study on the I AM statements of Jesus Christ as documented in the fourth Gospel, John. Although these sayings are very familiar, taking a “deep-dive” into the context of the sayings, the environment where Jesus spoke them, the original audience who heard them, and the response to His Words has been powerful. I have heard folks say that being a Christian would be easier if Jesus simply told us what we need to know and spoke in clear language for us to understand. I am more than certain these words have come from my own mouth. But what we find as we study the Word is that He does speak to us in straightforward terms. See, the folks that He was speaking to and the culture they found themselves were not so different than our own. Sure, they were different as to the elements of the culture, but when you learn about their hearts, their doubts, their unbelief, and their belief, you find many similarities.
Although our studies are on the I AM statements, I have been approaching my studies on the foundation of the greatest commandment as documented in Deuteronomy 6:5 and Matthew 22:37,
“Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.” (Matt. 22:37)
It is clear that each time this commandment is spoken in the Bible that the objective for God is to have an intimate relationship with us. I think of it as a request (command) for a return of affection in terms that we understand. The Bible is a book provided to us by God, written by man, inspired by God’s Spirit who was in the writers, just as His Spirit is within all of us who have accepted Jesus as our Lord and Savior and believe in His life, death, and resurrection. But, in each of Jesus’s I AM statements, He is giving us reason to not only believe in Him, but to love Him… with all our heart, soul and mind. To “believe” is not to “love.” We can believe in many things, but not love them. We can do many things, but not out of love. If you have any doubt, stop reading this document and open your Bible to 1 Corinthians 13 – short chapter, but very clear.
As I study for each week, I write the Greatest Commandment at the top of my notes and then I write the corresponding statement for that week’s study, for example last week was, “I am the resurrection and the life” (John 11:25). I then read three chapters of the text. The chapter from which my study originates, the previous chapter and then the subsequent chapter. I then list all of the ways in which I see the text resonating with our love for God, or the audience’s love for God or lack of it. It is where there is a “lack” of it that I seek the purpose for the statement (I AM…). Jesus’s desire for all people was for them to love Him, as He loves all people. As my list grows, I then go to work doing more research to find evidence of what I have listed. For example, last week I saw that Mary and Martha sent word to Jesus that Lazarus was sick, “”Lord, the one you love is sick.” (John 11:3). Well, this led me to question where else in the scriptures that evidence could be found that Jesus specifically loved Lazarus. In verse 5, it says that Jesus loved Martha, her sister and Lazarus so I would believe this signified a deep relationship. So, I went to work validating that. And this is how I tackle studying a section of scripture. It was in my research of Jesus’s love for Lazarus that I came across this week’s scripture study which is a perpendicular tangent to our I AM studies, but I found them of great interest to our broader topic of understanding God in our relationship with Him.
So, if you struggle with studying the scriptures and don’t know how to get started, maybe you will find value in how I tackle it. It is one of several methods that I use and it is so much fun- my challenge is that I need to wrap up my journey through the Word before the end of the week to be able to assemble my findings in such a way that they make sense to you! So, have fun studying!
In church news… We are still seeking a Director of Youth and Family ministries to lead our youth and support our children’s and family ministries. This is taking longer than we had hoped, but we have confidence that God will raise up the right person at the right time. In the meantime, I am very thankful for Claudia Mingora and Joe Blackwood who have kept our Youth activities moving forward. Steve Fieldhouse will be joining Joe and Claudia as a Sunday School teacher and additional leader until we fill the position. Thank you to all who support this critical ministry of Yorkshire Church!
The Fellowship Hall renovation process continues to move forward and the Trustee leadership has selected Keller Contracting, LLC as our project contractor with Dietz & Naumann providing the electrical and Spangler & Boyer the HVAC and plumbing portions of the project. There are some other peripheral suppliers involved for our audio/visual needs as well as some new interior perimeter drains which will be installed. There are still some final details being worked out in regards to the Springettsbury Township Permit process and our Finance team is using all of this data to evaluate which bank will be selected as our financial partner for the project. The kickoff meeting with our contractors is scheduled for June 29th! Praise God for His blessings!
I will be providing our financial numbers in the near future. Thank you so much for those that have made additional gifts to the building fund to help us offset the renovation expenses. I will begin reporting this element of the renovation project with May’s financial results. It is our hope that we can offset our debt service expense (as a minimum) in addition to our regular offering receipts. As we finalize our financing, we will report this expense amount to you, as well. If you are new to the church, this renovation project is required primarily to repair damage that has been sustained due to problems with our perimeter drainage systems which are as old as the building itself. In addition, we are updating the space with ADA access (ramp) as well as ADA bathroom facilities which will allow us to better serve our community.
This past week, Joe Blackwood (SPRC Chair) and I had the opportunity to meet with Alison Sutherland who runs all things administrative (and more) at Yorkshire Church, and has done so for 19 years! Alison shared with us her desire to resign from her post on July 31st so that she can fulfill some other
desires and needs in her life, which will also allow her to be a short-term
caregiver for her husband Steve following surgery on his leg– scheduled later
this summer. This is truly bittersweet news for Yorkshire, although it is a
blessing for Alison. (I have a feeling that some time with her “grand-niece” is in
the plans, as well!) Alison will remain accessible for Yorkshire and hopes to be
able to offer us assistance as we need it in the future. We will begin recruiting in the very near future. If you or someone you know may be interested in this position, let Joe Blackwood or me know as soon as possible! Feel free to speak to Alison about her plans and certainly keep her in prayer and celebrate this time with her!
Have a great day and a great week!
Peace and Blessings! -pastor dave. firstname.lastname@example.org 717-858-5870
125 Edgewood Road, York, PA 17402
27 May 2022, Good Day Yorkshire Church!
We have certainly enjoyed some great times of fellowship over the past two weeks! I want to thank Julie Mann and her team that made the Church Picnic at Springettsbury Park a great success! Special thanks to Frank Herron and Steve Coates for some of the back breaking work of transport and cleanup of picnic supplies from the church and back. Thanks to Andy Terry, Joe Blackwood, and Steve Coates for providing the best in grill master talent as all of our main course meal was cooked to perfection! Thanks to everyone that brought such a great assortment of foods, side dishes and desserts that rounded out our culinary meal selections(and those peas, whoever brought them- yum)! And then, thanks to all who came out to enjoy the fellowship of the church! Yes, the skies appeared to be threatening, but we all know who gets the thanks for breaking up the storms to our west, allowing them to pass over with just a few sprinkles, and then reform to our east. Yes, we can thank God for that!
Last week, we enjoyed a great presentation on Thursday morning with our Preschool students and their families! What a great day to have the sanctuary filled with folks enjoying time with one another as their students presented their songs and Bible verses. We are so blessed to have had such an incredible student population this year. We are so blessed to have such a dedicated preschool staff! This past year, this staff, with the support of the Yorkshire congregation, provided the Gospel message of Jesus Christ to about 30 children every day. Thirty children enjoyed wonderful fellowship in a loving, Christ-centered environment during their school year. They not only heard the message of Christ, but they shared in the love of Christ with their teachers. As I was blessed to have a few minutes a week with the students, I was never in the room long until they reminded me that Jesus lives in their hearts. Praise God!
It was a great blessing to have a delegation of our students present their songs to the congregation last Sunday morning. Although a bit more nervous in front of folks that they didn’t know, I heard from many of the families how they enjoyed sharing in our fellowship with their children. Everyone felt very welcome at Yorkshire and just about everyone I spoke to shared in how much they enjoyed the “Spirit” of the morning.
On Wednesday evening, I had the blessing and honor to present the Baccalaureate message to the students of the Northeastern High School graduating class of 2022, their families, the teachers and administration. What an incredible evening of fellowship and worship- a service designed by a high school student named Elisabeth Zimmerman. Elisabeth is a member of Faith Community Church that meets in West York and you don’t have to spend much time with her to have a deep sense that she has the Spirit of God in her heart. It was great to serve this woman and her school as just a little over a year ago, she was injured in a very serious car accident. But she persevered through it and you can see how her faith in God is paramount to the woman she has become, and we could hear it as she led the praise time in music with her ukulele. We spent time in the book of Esther, as she mentioned to me that this was one of her favorite passages. I have never preached this particular book in my time as a pastor, so my study and research were truly rewarding.
In summary, we most often consider Esther as a magnificent woman that did heroic things in the face of adversity which resulted in saving her people, the Jews that were living in Persia. But this young woman did not have an easy time getting to where she was, and in some cases, I believe she had to have had great fear in how her life transpired. Esther, born Hadassah, was an orphan early in her life, adopted by an uncle Mordecai, who ultimately submitted her to the King’s harem in hopes that he may pick her as a queen. She had to hide her identity as a Jew because that would not have been acceptable in the harem. I don’t know about you, but I don’t know any young girl whose life dream is to be a slave in a king’s harem – especially a man like Xerxes who was not a particularly upstanding individual. But she persevered and we know from the inferred text that she had faith in God. As I studied the 10 chapters of Esther, I considered what Esther’s go to verses may have been for her faith. I believe we all have some verse that we keep tucked in the back of our minds for help in times where we face difficulty. Maybe its Philippians 4:13, maybe Hebrews 11:1 or Romans 15:13.
Based on the timings of these writings (NT), they would not have been available to Esther. I surmised that the words that she may have had the most access to would have been from the prophet Jeremiah as they were written about 200 years before her time. I thought maybe Jeremiah 29:11-13 may have been on her mind: “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.”
This verse has strong ties to the greatest commandment spoken by our Lord in both the Old Testament and the New Testament and I’ll summarize, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your mind, and all your soul, and all your strength.” (combination of Deuteronomy 6:5 & Matthew 22:37). This is such a powerful command. In the Deuteronomy and Matthew texts, we see this as a response to a question and we consider it a command. But, in Jeremiah, and the context of Esther (which is not stated in the Esther text), it may be seen as an offer of hope. A means to an end, a solution to a need, a comfort in a time of difficulty.
In our I AM study this week, we will be discussing the I AM statement of Jesus as he states, I AM the Good Shepherd. Certainly a familiar statement that we all know well. But, in my study, I have been led to see this as a relationship statement, a calling out to us, if you will. In John 10, we see these verses:
John 10:3-4, “He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. When he has brought out all his own, he goes on ahead of them, and his sheep follow him because they know his voice. Then consider verses 13-16, “I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me— just as the Father knows me and I know the Father—and I lay down my life for the sheep. I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen. I must bring them also. They too will listen to my voice, and there shall be one flock and one shepherd.”
Over the past week, I have been part of many tremendous worship and fellowship experiences within the Body of Christ, both here at Yorkshire, and at Northeastern High School. In each of these moments, Christ was the center of our focus, He was the reason for our gathering – mostly for worship, but also for simple fellowship of His Church. There was great joy in all of these settings. But we have also experienced some difficult things this past week, some things that make us ask questions, wonder why, or how, and then either intentionally or unintentionally try to come up with all the ways that we need to “fix” the ills of our culture.
But the reality is we live in a culture that has distanced itself and continues to distance itself from God. We remove Him from everything public and allow Him to only be a presence in non-secular facilities and activities. Our culture has relegated our God, the Triune God, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit to the Christian Church. But this does not mean that God is still not at work. In Esther’s world, she lived in a pagan culture where the God named, I AM, “Ego Eime” (Greek), Yahweh, was not a welcome God. Yet, we know that Esther leaned on Him and when her going got rough, and the lives of the Jews, including her own were on the line, she reached out to Him fervently, maybe with all her heart, mind, soul, and strength, and He responded. Esther did not change the world or the evils in it. She did not fix the souls of man or their tendency to turn their back on God, but her faith and her actions made a difference to some in that moment, but it was God who responded.
In our John verses, we see that the Shepherd is the one that calls. He is the one that makes the ultimate sacrifice for us. He is the one that brings us where we are to be. But, to hear His call, to hear His voice, we need to know Him. And we do that by seeking Him.
So, as we look out at all of the darkness in our culture and wonder how or why, we must consider that what we may be seeing is a glimpse of hell, or a what a world without God looks like. But we have a Shepherd, a Good Shepherd that seeks a relationship with us, and all of the world. I believe in times like this, that we can only find comfort as we seek God with all of our heart, when we seek a relationship with Him and cherish our faith community. We are not to be a segregated entity from the world, but we are called to be different from it. There are many hurting people out there that are seeking a safe place, a refuge from what they know is not right, and I believe they will find it when they have a church community that is focused on seeking the heart of God to participate with.
When I look at the darkness in the hearts of so many in our culture, I wonder what a difference a loving church community may have made in their lives. I am encouraged that I am part of a community that is seeking the heart of God and growing in its fellowship as His Body. My go to verses are Acts 2:42-47 – simply as a model, or an image in my mind of what we must seek as His church.
“They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. Everyone was filled with awe at the many wonders and signs performed by the apostles. All the believers were together and had everything in common. They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need. Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.”
In short, they worshipped God as the community of His believers. They loved one another and as a result, the Lord brought others into His fold. I AM the Good Shepherd. My sheep know me just as I know the Father and the Father knows me. This means, that we know the Shepherd, just as the Shepherd knows His Father.
Sometimes, as the church, we simply need to realize that we are first called to be sheep. His Sheep, in His pen. That is the church, the fellowship of the Body.
Have a great day and a great week!
Peace and Blessings!
PS: Next week we will have an update on our contractor selection for the fellowship hall project and financial data through the end of April!
12 May 2022, Good Day Yorkshire Church!
I am happy to be writing my first What’s Brewing in over a month! The last few weeks have been very eventful. Since my last “brew” we have celebrated Holy Week, Easter Sunday and had a sending celebration for Pastor Megan. We began the Joyful Noise Preschool participation in the Healthy Kids Running Series at Springettsbury Park, hired a new Preschool teacher for next year and have been working through recruiting and hiring a new Director of Youth and Family Ministries position. Finally, we have had several meetings, two charge conferences, and a Townhall meeting to launch our Fellowship Hall renovation and facility access program!
These are the things that keep us busy, but we must also celebrate our worship, as well. Over the past few months our music ministries and Choir have hit new strides and we continue to grow in these areas. Our attendance trends remain very positive and as of the end of March, our financial picture remains healthy, as well. Here is a summary of the first quarter:
Offerings, Gifts, and Giving’s: Expenses and Outreach: Balance:
120,578 117,583 2,995
In these numbers, we can celebrate that we are able to pay our bills and support our ministries. During this time, we have also spent over $7,000.00 on our facility- primarily a continuing process of repair and remediation for our fellowship hall and associated expenses. We are looking forward to getting the final renovation process underway.
As you may know, the church voted unanimously at a Charge Conference held on May 2nd to move forward with a Fellowship Hall renovation project that will include a ramp, new bathrooms, and a restored Fellowship Hall space which will allow improved ADA access. The projected expense is $275,000.00 which will be managed through a loan from a local bank. The drawings have been submitted to Springettsbury Township as a part of the permitting process and final bids have been received from two local contractors. Steve Spangler is the project lead on the construction side and Doug Berman is working with the banks on the financial side. The next few weeks will be very busy as the final decisions, contractor and bank selections are made. Then the real fun will begin with the construction!
During the last few months, many have asked if we would be having a Capital Campaign to raise the funds for this project and/or how they could contribute to it. We have not officially launched a “campaign” nor is it in our plans specifically, but we encourage the fellowship of Yorkshire to donate to this necessary cause within our church. We are anticipating our debt service for the loan to be in the vicinity of $26,000 per year with an additional fundraising goal equal to this amount during the payback period. If we can increase our contributions to the building fund, while maintaining our general giving, then we can continue to finance and invest in what it is we are called to as a church, and that is ministry.
To contribute to our Fellowship Hall renovation process, you can simply designate “Building Fund” on your gift. It is our hope to pay for all of our expenses in this area out of this fund, which includes the loan debt service. Our building is aging and we are also incurring regular expenses in other areas of required
maintenance. It is our hope that we can fully fund this project from your gifts to the “Building Fund,” and not from our general operating budget. We are currently considering 10- and 15-year loan terms to help spread the costs out so that the expenses do not provide a burden to our church. But we would love to retire the debt as quickly as possible! Your support of this project is greatly appreciated and we are certain that this project will allow us to better serve our community, as well!
If you currently use the On-line giving, you will notice that the giving categories have changed in the past few weeks. This is to better align our financial management systems to our ministry focus. You will notice the following options when you go into the On-line giving portal on our website:
General: Preschool Tuition: Preschool:
This is for general offerings that simply go into our operating account to pay the weekly, monthly and annual operating expenses for the church.
This is new for 2022 which allows our Preschool Families to pay their tuition on line
which has been an ongoing request from a majority of our Preschool Community.
This is for donations specific to our Preschool Ministry. Joyful Noise Christian Preschool is a mission of the church and we count on your support to be
able to fully fund our growth and operating expenses. This allows us to maintain quality programming, small class sizes and a highly qualified teaching staff, all at competitive tuition rates for our community.
This is where we would like to grow in our support of our missionaries. We currently support 3 mission programs: Micah Ruch, Cru, West Chester State University; Henry Hauser, Literacy for All, North Africa, and Rebecca Jacobs, Time Ministries, Dominican Republic. Your gifts to this fund allow us to continue to grow in our support of these folks who have been called to “go” into places of the world, including our local communities, with the Gospel Message.
This is the account that is mentioned above from which we fund our renovations, building maintenance, and other ongoing facility and grounds improvements.
NOTE: You do not need to utilize the On-line Giving program to utilize these funds. Simply designate on
your check or your envelope the fund that you would like to support, and it will be allocated accordingly.
These are the general categories that we will be utilizing and reporting on as we provide our monthly and quarterly financial data to you. Our Finance Team has been working hard over the past year to restructure our financial platforms to make it more effective while streamlining the ways and the categories in which we give. If you choose not to “designate” a fund, your gifts simply go into our General giving category which can be utilized to support any of the funds. But it is our hope that as we grow as a church, that our giving community may find an area of our ministries which they are specifically passionate about and prayerfully consider providing additional support to that particular area.
Have a great day and a great week!
Peace and Blessings! -pastor dave.
125 Edgewood Road, York, PA 17402 •
25 March 2022 Greetings Yorkshire!
I find it hard to believe that we are approaching the last Sunday in March this weekend. I truly believe theyunderestimate the saying, “time flies when you are having fun!” March has been full of activity and if the speed in which the month passed is any indication of what April will be like, we better enjoy as much of April as we can!
I want to thank the team that came out to the church to support the attic cleanout. Although the work was hard, a great deal of fun was had and many laughs shared as tons of stored stuff was effectively re-dispositioned. Much of the stuff that was removed literally fell apart as it was carried due to multiple seasons of intense summer attic heat and the frigid cold experienced over the winters. I was amazed not only how much stuff came out of the attic, but more so that it was put up there in the first place.
Easily the most discussed items to exit the attic after an extended period in exile there were the three Kings, or Wise Men that in years past paraded down the aisle of the sanctuary. Since being removed from the attic, they have shown up at Scout meetings and even participated in the Wednesday
morning 6AM Men’s Fellowship. Mysteriously, they continue to present themselves in places that no one seems to have placed them in. Maybe they are simply happy to be free from the attic?
We have some important meetings coming up this next week. On Monday, March 28, the Staff Parish Team will hold its standard quarterly meeting to discuss all things personnel. On the agenda for this meeting is discussions on the new position we are recruiting for, Director of Youth and Family Ministries. We have received several applications from potential candidates and we will begin the interviewing process in the very near future. We are still accepting applications for consideration. It is our goal to fill this position as quickly as possible to ensure a smooth transition in our Youth Pastor position as well as begin to provide benefit to our younger students and families as well!
On Tuesday, March 29th, at 6:30PM we will have an Administrative Council Meeting that will have two distinct objectives. The first is that we will have an Ad Council Charge Conference to address corrections on Form 6 that was voted on during our Charge Conference back in November. This form has to do with my compensation. After working with our payroll company and the conference, we realized that there
was some confusion regarding how a block that represented my pension was filled out. This is not a large concern , just administrative, but in the correction process, requires a “charge conference” vote to accept the corrected numbers.
The second far more critical objective is a discussion on how we proceed with the Fellowship Hall and facility access project that our Trustee Leadership has been working through to repair the damage from last year’s flooding. We have currently spent over $50,000.00 on immediate repair needs and now must make a decision on how to move forward with the restoration. The Trustees considered two paths forward. 1) Repair the Fellowship Hall with improved convenience/bathroom facilities at an estimated cost of $150,000.00 or 2) Repair the Fellowship Hall with improved convenience/bathroom facilities including an ADA accessible entrance ramp at a total estimated cost of $250,000.00. The plan is to secure financing for the project from an outside bank source as well as get a sense of what type of support the fellowship is willing to provide to offset the financed amount. At this point, the Trustees are recommending Option 2 to the Administrative Council. The goal is for the Administrative Council to consider the recommendation based on our current financial situation and giving trends. Following the Ad Council’s recommendation, we will present the project to the church at a forthcoming Town Hall meeting to ensure that the plan has the support of the church fellowship. This is important. Your input is important! If you would like to attend the Ad Council
meeting on the 29th, you are welcome to do so. It will be held on the second floor of the Education Wing of the Church. If you would like to share your thoughts and cannot attend the meeting, please contact me or Jim Valentine through phone call or email and I will ensure that your thoughts are shared at the meeting.
Everything is going well at Yorkshire Church and our attendance trends are reflecting positively as we continue to grow. It is exciting to see our Bible Study groups reflecting the same trends. As you may notice, I do not dwell on “attendance numbers,” nor do I believe this is an indication of the health of a church. But what I do focus on is the trend. If we are growing, then we must be aware of this to be sure that we have all that we need to facilitate and support the growth. If we would be in a situation where we were not growing, we would want to understand the why of such a trend, and ensure that our forward planning took these things into consideration. Considerations include our financial ability to support and invest in our ministries, while taking care of the administrative needs of our facility and staff. Maintaining the proper balance of ministry, facility and administration spending is a constant challenge. I look forward to sharing with you our 1st Quarter Financial Report early next month.
As always, your input is important and it is valued. Much is going on and many decisions being made. This is part of being a dynamic church. It is part of the growing process. It is exciting. But the ultimate reward is to see how we are making an impact on our church community, those whom we are called to serve, and those that do not yet enjoy a relationship with Jesus Christ. That is being the church!
Have a great day and a great week!
Peace and Blessings! -pastor dave. email@example.com 717-858-5870
125 Edgewood Road, York, PA 17402
10 March 2022
Good Day Yorkshire!
It is a great day to be a part of the Yorkshire Fellowship! There are many exciting things in the works for our church!
I am looking forward to our Easter Egg hunt scheduled for April 9th from 10AM to 1PM. Thank you to everyone who is involved in the planning and design of this event. You will be seeing more information on this event in the announcements and in the church, but I want to share how I see the benefits of such an event. First, it is fun for our children. It is fun for the children in our community. It is a positive event for families to participate in. It is an enjoyable time to fellowship with our church family and meet those in our community who venture onto our grounds. Second, it is an opportunity for us to share who we are with those in our community. To many, we are a formal-looking, red-brick, colonial church with a tall steeple. For some, this is attractive, for others, it represents a religious formality that doesn’t effectively represent the times. It might represent a viable alternative for those that want to hold on to the religious traditions they grew up with; for others it might be an escape from sitting in a large auditorium with a thousand or more people. Some may drive by and think we all wear dark suits, long dresses and top hats like some Puritan religious faction and sit quietly in the pews while some preacher-man drones on in two-hour lectionary sermons.
But the truth is, that regardless of perceptions driven by the red bricks and tall spire above, Yorkshire is an awesome group of wonderful folks that represent all walks of life and have fun when we gather for worship. (No comments about the preacher droning on…). We don’t fit any one specific church stereotype, but represent the people in our community very well. When our church gathers for events such as the Easter Egg Hunt (Rally Day, Trunk or Treat, etc.) we provide a clear vision of what it means to be a church. And we have heard this from those in our community that attended any of our functions. Jesus said that we are to “Love one another.
As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” (John 13:34-35). When we read that in the scriptures, it comes across as a very formal command, but the reality of it is that when we, as a church, gather together in view of our community, it is something that they can witness in a very informal way. It can very quickly change the formal view of “Christianity” that many in the worldtoday hold. We want folks to know that this is a very comfortable, and welcome
place to seek God and develop a relationship with Jesus Christ. It is a place where people can be themselves, feel open to share, and find the value of special interpersonal relationships (See Acts 2:42-47).
We came into an impromptu opportunity for this Sunday, March 13th to share with our community as we host the York County Junior Honors Choir for their first post-Covid concert appearance. The pandemic has made it very difficult on groups such as this and the YCJHC is no exception. This group of 7th to 9th graders have worked very hard to put together an incredible musical program. At 3PM, they will debut their 2022 performance at Yorkshire Church and our entire fellowship is invited to attend! This is a no-charge event, although it is customary for a free-will offering to be taken during their events – which goes to the benefit of the Honors Choir programming. This is an event that I am very excited about as our own Thomas Wakeland is a member- although now singing in the Senior Honors Choir, and it was a program that brought great benefits to our daughter Grace during her High School years. The Junior Honors Choir is comprised of 29 members this year, so it will be a blessing to honor them and their families for their performance – hope to see you there!
Stay tuned for the scheduling of a Yorkshire Church Townhall meeting in the very near future. As I have mentioned in previous correspondence, we are finalizing our repair and restoration plans for the Fellowship Hall which may include accessibility improvements. As we make our final decisions, we want to hear your voice and thoughts on the options available to us. There will be opportunities for significant investments in our facility, but we want to ensure that our final decision represents the will of the church, and that is you. The timing of these investments is coming at a time where all of us are being faced with higher costs in our cost-of- living expenses, so prayerful consideration for all that we do is imperative.
As I close this week’s What’s Brewing dialog, I just want to respond to many inquiries and questions that I receive regarding how we are praying and participating in the events that are occurring in the Ukraine. The events in that nation are of great concern; one that is close to home for our church as we currently have two Ukrainian students in our Joyful Noise Christian Preschool. Absolutely wonderful children. Our response as Christians is to pray for the overall situation and seek any means that we can to bring aid to those in need. We must also pray for the revelation of God’s sovereignty to those who are in the midst of difficulty; that His peace be made known so that even in their tribulation, they may have Hope in His salvation and His restoration.
We must also remember that there are many other parts of the world where these very same types of persecution are being suffered by God’s people, often in the midst of conflict that is not only the result of corrupt governmental power, but directly targeted to individuals because of their faith in God, and acceptance of Jesus Christ as their personal Savior. With so much turmoil in the world, both historically and currently, we can be reminded of why Christ gave us the Great Commission to make disciples, to share His Word, to proclaim the Peace only available through a relationship with Him. In John 16:33 He says this, “ “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”
What we can be thankful for is the Joy that we have in Christ and the opportunity we have to be in relationship with the Sovereign God of all of Creation. We can be thankful for the church family and community that He has blessed each of us with at Yorkshire Church. And lastly, we can share these blessings with those around us who may not know that God, through his Son Jesus, wants to have a relationship with them!
Peace and Blessings! -pastor dave. firstname.lastname@example.org
125 Edgewood Road, York, PA 17402 • (717)755-4952 • www.yorkshirechurch.org
3 March 2022 Greetings Yorkshire Churchians!
Lent. Can’t believe we are entering the season of Lent already. But, since we gathered together last evening in fellowship to worship God as part of an Ash Wednesday acknowledgement, I suppose that we have to accept that this year is moving very quickly, and yes, it is actually March.
I have enjoyed our study of Isaiah over the past several weeks. It has served as a great reminder to me that our world has been in seeming chaos forever. As we study of the history of the Israelites, we can see that not only were they constantly turning their backs on God and finding other things to focus their lives on, we also see that world powers were also constantly vying for power. In the history of the Bible, we see constant upheaval in the world, even outside of the Biblical framework of focus. All around the Promised Land vicinity, we see the Persians, Babylonians, Assyrians, Egyptians, and Romans consistently at odds with one another – all of which affected God’s people in various ways. But regardless of the happenings around them, it was typically when they took their focus off of God, that they were able to be separated, exiled, and persecuted. This doesn’t mean that their lives weren’t affected by the disruptions around them, but, their most significant difficulties emerged when they took their focus off of God and their love for one another waned.
We live in a world that has many disruptions occurring in it. From pandemics to wars, you can’t deny that we live in a world of chaos. We try to make sense of it, but it is often difficult to discern the difference of what is really happening and what is being portrayed as happening from various news sources. On top of the chaos, we are faced with many factions that want to provide information to us to gain a specific response from us, which simply adds to the confusion in the world. I don’t look to the prophetic passages in scripture to predict what will happen tomorrow or next year, but I have learned from historical repetition of how humanity responds to worldly distractions. As the church, we can benefit from the lessons that God has provided us in the Scriptures. And we can simplify it for discussions like “What’s Brewing.” It is my discernment that during these times, it is important for us to focus on God. It is during these times that our prayers should be for wisdom and discernment. It is during these times that we pray for the marginalized, and those that have no voice, no say in the predicament that they face. Although we may not agree with what we perceive to be happening, we also need to look to God’s sovereignty in recognizing that regardless of what is
happening in the world, He is still in charge.
During the Easter season, we will study and hear scriptures that tell us of
what our Lord Jesus went through during His time here on earth. It wasn’t
pretty. In the end, after He is arrested, a dialog occurs between Pilate and
Jesus which is good to reflect on during times where we question why
leaders are allowed to be where they are today. God’s purposes are not
always clear to us in the present and I am sure Jesus’s followers questioned His comments at the time that He spoke them. (Emphasis in following text mine).
10 “Do you refuse to speak to me?” Pilate said. “Don’t you realize I have power either to free you or to crucify you?” 11 Jesus answered, “You would have no power over me if it were not given to you from above. Therefore the one who handed me over to you is guilty of a greater sin.” (John 19:10-11, NIV).
As I reflect back on Isaiah’s writings to the Israelites in Jerusalem and Judah during a time of great Assyrian oppression – I see that his focus for the people was to repent and turn back to God. Last evening, our service focused on repentance as a means for us to rid ourselves of the things that bog us down and put themselves in the place of God in our hearts. This may be represented in various sins, little or big, or maybe it is simply allowing the noise in the world, the ilk of the media, and the chaos of the world to distract us from our relationship with God. Whatever our primary focus is on, is what we will also reflect to those around us. Our question is, how do we ensure that our reflection is always one that glorifies God?
Now, on to some church happenings! Since my last What’s Brewing, we have hired a Music Director and a Praise and Worship Leader! Steve Fieldhouse has joined our team as the Music Director which includes Choir Director. Steve serves as part of our Praise and Worship team at 9AM worship playing the bass guitar and the saxophone and at 11:15 leading our incredible choir. Through the week you may see Steve in the Joyful Noise Christian Preschool teaching our children different musical lessons, or on Thursday nights directing the choir. Jazzé Palmer has joined our team as our Praise and Worship leader for the 9AM Worship Service and provides his gifts from the piano keyboard and vocals. Jazzé works with our Praise Team on Thursday nights. Thursday nights in the Yorkshire Sanctuary may not be worship in the perspective of a church service, but from the time the choir starts at 6:30 till the praise team concludes at 8:30, there is Joy in that space! Welcome Steve and Jazzé!
Another area of focus for us is in filling the position of Director/Pastor of Youth and Family Ministries. This position is focused on our Youth Ministries as Pastor Megan transitions into her new ministry calling with her husband David in Lititz. The Staff Parish Team has rewritten the job description to include a focus on family and children’s ministry here in the church. This will include working with all of our current youth and children’s ministry volunteers.
We continue to receive quotes on rebuilding our fellowship hall including accessibility improvements. We are finding that pricing for this type of work is experiencing significant increases- even since we began this process last fall. After our first round of proposals, the Trustee leadership decided to seek additional proposals which will give us a solid base of options to ensure that the best decisions are made for our fellowship; weighing the benefits of the investments that will be required. Although we want to do everything that we feel would be best long-term, we want to ensure that we do it in such a way as to not cause financial stress on our fellowship. Step out in faith, yes, but also ensure that we are being wise stewards of all of God’s blessings. But there is work that needs to be done- so our Trustee team will be facing some forthcoming effort to make some key decisions to propose to our church and leadership. Stay tuned!
I am looking forward to celebrating Girl Scout Sunday this week which will be during our 9AM Worship! This is a great group of scouts and leaders and I know that their presence with us in worship will be a blessing!
Blessings to you this day! -pastor dave. email@example.com
125 Edgewood Road, York, PA 17402 • (717)755-4952 • www.yorkshirechurch.org