Heading into Holy Week

March 22, 2024
By Rev. Lynn Bartlow, Lead Pastor

It feels a little like Holy Saturday already. In the middle of grief, I wonder how God will create something good out of what has happened.

We announced last week that Pastor Kevin will be moving to another appointment. Since then, I’ve heard different responses from our church. How can the conference be so short-sighted? What are they thinking? Does what we are doing with newly merged churches even matter? What is our future? How on earth can we grow a church in these critical months when we have to pivot, to prepare to receive a new, integral person on the team?

I admit I’m facing my own grief about this. I’m pretty sure I’ve quickly gone through all the stages of grief, and more: denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance. I’ll likely revisit some of those stages again in the next several months. That’s pretty normal. It’s expected when we face a loss.

With all of this in mind, it feels like Holy Saturday- we are in the middle of the grief, wondering how God will create something good out of this.

And yet, we are Methodist, which means we understand that pastoral changes happen and we accept that we are part of a big picture, not just our own church. AND, we know that the laity, our church members, are even more integral to our work than the pastors. YOU will be the ones who are here long after Pastor Kevin and Pastor Kim and I all leave. It is up to YOU to help make both campuses of our church vibrant and exciting and relevant to the world.

Even more, we are an Easter people. We are a people of hope. We know that God DOES work good in the world. God takes the pain of the cross and turns it into the joy of the empty tomb.

As we enter this Holy Week, I pray that you are able to acknowledge all the range of emotions that the week brings. Sit with your grief. Face your anger. Embrace your joy. But among it all, I pray that you cling to the hope that we have because of God’s work in the world.

See you soon!
Pastor Lynn