Dear First Pres,

   It's not too often that someone in your neighborhood throws a party as epic as the one happening on Fulton Street this Saturday. The Fulton Street Party runs for most of the afternoon and evening. The main ribbon cutting ceremony starts at 3pm at the Mariposa Plaza. There are pre-ceremony performances at 2pm, and at 4 the party starts and runs all the way until 10pm. I encourage you to check out the details here. I'm so grateful for the way that many of you have signed up to volunteer with the Downtown Partnership to make the event happen. I love the witness that your service gives to our incarnational presence downtown. By participating, you're saying, "God cares about this neighborhood, and so do we." Even, if you're not volunteering, I hope you will show up and enjoy the festivities. There'll be music, food, drink, and opportunities to experience what Fulton Street has to offer. Feel free to park in our church parking lot and walk over to the festivities. We'll be providing a security guard to try to keep things secure.
   In Jeremiah 29, the Lord gives a word through the prophet to the people of Judah who have been sent into exile. He tells them, in verse 7, "Seek the peace and prosperity of the city to which I have carried you into exile. Pray to the Lord for it, because if it prospers, you too will prosper." This is a peace and prosperity moment for downtown Fresno. The hope, as you know, with the opening of Fulton Street is for the continued revitalization of our downtown. And, if we take on the mindset of the people of God who were sent into exile (a mindset which I believe is absolutely appropriate for the times we're living in), then the continued revitalization of our downtown is something that we pray for, participate in, and celebrate along the way. You know, officially our name is First Presbyterian Church of Fresno. But on Saturday I hope we can demonstrate that we are First Presbyterian Church FOR Fresno. And I pray that God will give us the opportunity to share why we care so much for the redeeming transformation of our city and world.

See ya at the party,