“I thank my God every time I remember you. In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now, being confident of this, that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 1:3-6 from Today’s NIV)
Dear Friends at Holy Comforter Church,
I DO thank my God for you...every morning before the sun rises and I get into the day! I do thank God for our partnership in the Gospel beginning January 1 AND I know that the good work that God’s Spirit began in you many years ago in this Belmont community will continue! My good friend, Mike Varn, your pastor for 3+ decades, faithfully served you as Spiritual shepherd. I am grateful for his leadership. As I serve our Lord Jesus by serving you as your pastor during this interim “season,” may we find great joy in serving together! Thank you Mark Yount, the Congregation council and ALL who have begun to make my transition as your “seasonal” pastor such a joy-filled one! And thank you Pastors Linda & Jack for your faithful ministry during the “interim before the interim!”
A brief bio: As a Lenoir-Rhyne University and Southern Seminary graduate, I served much of my 37 year ministry in the southwest (California & Arizona) before being called by the ELCA to become pastor- developer of a new congregational start southeast of Charlotte. God also called me to be developer of a new start in Arizona as well. God’s Spirit has blessed me with a missional heart for ministry. For the last 9 years I have served in interim ministry – for 6 congregations as well as serving as the interim ELCA Mission Direc- tor for the NC Synod.
Liz and I just celebrated our 41th wedding anniversary in June. Home for us is on the Lutheridge Camp & Conference Center campus in Arden, south of Asheville. Just 25 minutes from us live our 3 grandchildren: Keaton, Nola & Calloway. In addition to our son, Brian & daughter-in-law, Emily in Asheville, we have a daugh- ter, Jenni in Charlotte (it will be great being a little closer to her), a 2nd son & 2nd daughter-in-law. Austin was ordained a year ago into the ELCA ministry; he and Tanya are serving in global mission & ministry in Madagascar! Liz and I are blessed immeasurably by the family God has given us!
I was asked by someone here at Holy Comforter to share a bit of my “vision” for our Church during the inter- im season. I shared that the Spiritual gift of “encouragement” was given to me at my Baptism; therefore, as an encourager I’ll be inviting you to do the same...encourage folks along their Spiritual journey; give strokes; give hugs; give God thanks for blessings! And don’t put these opportunities off – all we have to do is remem- ber with a sad heart what recently happened in Newtown, Connecticut.
During this season of waiting for God’s Spirit to reveal who your next Pastor will be, I’ll walk with you as one of your Spiritual guides. Other gifts I pray I will bring to the Holy Comforter family of faith are witness & out- reach and Spiritual formation. And I love kids, young and old...have I shown you pictures of my grandkids?!
May we together find much joy, love & peace as we minister together in the season we have before us. Many blessings to you in the New Year in the name of Jesus!
Copyright © 2023 Lutheran Church of the
Holy Comforter, Belmont NC
Sunday Worship 10:30 am
Lutheran Church of the Holy Comforter
216 N Main Street
Belmont, NC 28012
Office Hours: Monday-Friday 8:30 - 1:30