June 23, 2016

Dear First Pres,

I'm writing today from Ward Church in Northville, MI. It is the sight of our denomination's annual General Assembly meeting in which we do the business of our denomination. But it is also a time of worship (last night's worship service was amazing) and development and encouragement. The General Assembly meetings in the EPC are fun! So, I need to make sure you know, I love our denomination. The Evangelical Presbyterian Church is a wonderful group of communities who are seeking to share the good news of the gospel in the U.S. and around the world. What a joy to be part of such a denomination.

A few weeks ago I was looking at the picture frame in the hall of our office building that has the pictures of every senior pastor of FPC Fresno. I believe the Lord spoke to me that day, reminding me that I am the first senior pastor in the last 40 years (at least) who hasn't had to help the churçh navigate a contentious (or, at least, difficult) relationship with our denomination. Think about that. For decades, FPC was spending a considerable amount of energy to simply maintain an orthodox theology on its denomination. Friends, I have good news. Those days are behind us! Now we can join our energies with our denomination to advance the gospel of Jesus Christ without reservation. Now we can invest our energies fully in our great purpose: to engage together in Christ's work of making disciples for the redeeming transformation of our city and world. Praise the Lord!

If you're wondering what a General Assembly looks like, visit the EPC website where you can find a live stream of the meeting. www.epc.org

I look forward to seeing you on Sunday for worship (9:00 a.m.). I may be a bit travel weary, but my heart will be full from this great Assembly.

Blessings,

 

P.S. We had a great start on Sunday to our Activating God Space class. I hope all y'all (I sat with some southern folks today) will make an effort to get there, even if you missed the first week.