On Sunday, I received a call that filled me with both joy and sadness. The call came from Germantown Mennonite Church, confirming that I had been unanimously approved as the new Associate Pastor for Education & Worship there. This opportunity had been in process for quite a while, the call came as a final confirmation on their end. This means that my last day at Old First will be Monday, February 29th. I have already spoken with Michael Caine and Steve Wilhite, and we will work to ensure that the transition to the next Outreach Minister will be smooth.
On the one hand, I am very excited by the opportunity to serve as Associate Pastor at Germantown Mennonite. I look forward to helping them improve their Christian Education across all ages and deepen their worship experiences. On the other hand, I have grown to love Old First and our Outreach programs here, and I will miss working with the many wonderful church members and volunteers who serve in so many different ways. I will especially miss working with Michael, Teresa, John Owens, and everyone else who spends time in the church office.
I will continue to work here for the remainder of February, and transition to that job on March 1st. This will give us a chance for a smoother leadership transition, and I am confident that someone else will be found who can bring leadership to both the day-to-day details of the Outreach work and to the larger questions of mission and direction that are so important at this time.
I think I will leave Old First’s Outreach Ministries in good shape, and I know I will leave them in good hands. We have grown our volunteer base, and we have committed volunteers returning every month to cook Shelter Dinners, serve Saturday Breakfasts, distribute clothing, and just hangout with our guests. We have eight (eight!) Saturday Breakfast Coordinators, numerous cooking teams, hundreds of passionate and wonderful volunteers, a whole networkof casserole-preparers, and an uncountable number of people who pray for our guests and for our work every week. I have zero doubt that Old First will continue to grow in its commitment to serving and standing in solidarity with those in need. I look forward to visiting to see what new changes will happen. (and I’m gonna snag one of the last available Shelter Dinner spots in April just so I can come back and see the guys!)
Thank you to each of you for your support and your willingness to step up and serve in so many different ways. Thank you for the opportunity to serve and grow for the short time that I was here at Old First.