FROM PASTOR ANN MARIE PERKINS

“What’s exciting this winter?”

Is February a “down time”?  Just as we have been weathering storms of snow and ice, we have continued to keep pace with our ministries.  Council agreed at our January meeting to form a search team for a youth and family minister.  Dave Maurice, Liz Chapin, Judy Dodge, Lyda Vigorito, and I are working on a job title and description to begin our search.  A youth minister will join our paid staff at a time when we must take bold action to invest in our present and future.  We have 33 youth (18 and under) and their families who need special attention from this congregation.  Also, there are families in the Warren community who need to be reached with the gospel.  A young (yet mature) person of faith will be able to go out to where youth and families meet and invite them to know Jesus Christ.  Please pray for the work of the “Growing Young Team” searching for our youth pastor.

Long after my suitcases have been unpacked, and the summer sun has set, I am wrapping up with the final phase of my sabbatical work.  I am presenting to the congregation, the community, and the denomination on the topic “Spirituality for all Ages”.  On February 17, after worship, I will make a presentation to our congregation on my findings, and if enough people are present, we will have focus group discussions.  Please sign up in the narthex if you can participate.

Blessings as you grow in faith,
Pastor Ann Marie Perkins

 

SEARCH FOR A YOUTH AND FAMILY FORMATION MINISTER BEGINS:  St. Paul met for a leadership retreat in November 2018 and had serious and fruitful discussion about the need to nurture the growth of our families and our church.

The following month, 14 new members joined us, bringing 7 more youth into our congregation.  Their parents and grandparents are boldly confirming their faith in Jesus Christ, and the importance of bringing their young people to Jesus.  We have about 30 young people under the age of 18 who are active in worship, education, service, and fellowship activities at St. Paul.  The Council has made the growth of these members a priority in our church’s life and mission.

The “Growing Young Team” is made up of Dave Maurice, Liz Chapin, Judy Dodge, Lyda Vigorito, and Pastor Perkins.  The Council is reviewing the following job description:

Director of Youth and Family Ministry

St. Paul Lutheran Church is a growing, family-sized congregation that is seeking a part-time (or possibly full-time) person who is warm, faith-filled, and mature.  The youth and family minister will plan and implement an educational program for sharing the good news with our youth (pre-K through grade 12) and their families.  He/she will strengthen youth relationships with God, peers, family, and other members of the congregation.  The youth minister will empower youth, their mentors, and families to engage in ministries of worship, education, service, and fellowship.  He/she will also join our members in community gathering places, and will invite new friends and families to grow in the knowledge of Jesus Christ, and in service through events and mission trips.  This outreach work will be supported by the pastor and congregation.  Your creativity is welcome!  Salary will be commensurate with life experience.

QUALIFICATIONS:  A background in education, theology, or youth work with all ages is helpful.  The successful applicant must pass a background check and provide references.

We encourage you to pray that we will soon identify a new youth minister, and for the Spirit’s guidance of our team.  Ask any member of the “Growing Young Team” for updates.

 

PASTOR PERKINS’ SABBATICAL REPORT:  “SPIRITUALITY FOR ALL AGES”:  Come to a presentation by Pastor Ann Marie Perkins after worship on February 17 to hear a summary of her findings in these areas:

  • The difference between religion and spirituality
  • Why spirituality is significant to so many today
  • The spectrum of spirituality
  • Spiritual formation of children
  • Core spiritual strengths of the child
  • A variety of spiritual values
  • What are the spiritual needs of our preschoolers?
  • Spirituality reading program for preschoolers
  • Introduction of religious holidays for preschoolers

 

Please sign up in the narthex if you can attend.  If we have enough participants, we will use focus groups to gather information from the group.  Snacks will be served!

 

RESUMING ORGAN MUSIC:  Our search for a new organist has borne fruit!  During the month of January, as well as February 3, we have heard music of Jim Kuzman and Jeannine Morris, as they have played our liturgy and hymns.  We have been blessed by their accompaniment of our singing.  The Council is creating a music program that will include the music of organ, guitar, and piano.  We are blessed with a variety of musicians and vocalists to lead our song.  To God be the Glory!

 

MARK YOUR CALENDARS – LENT BEGINS MARCH 6:  The season of Lent begins March 6 with Ash Wednesday.  As in the past several years, we will be blessed with the presence and participation of Trumbull Area Lutheran Churches and our youth who are students of confirmation.  Details of our potluck and worship service will follow.

 

CELEBRATE GRAND-FAMILIES“Celebrate Grand-families” is a support group for grandparents raising their grandchildren.  St. Paul is reaching out to support these families with Christian compassion and a place to meet and discuss their needs.  We now have 17 families who participate, and more are welcome, if you know of anyone who would fit in.  While the women meet, we will have crafts, games, bible stories, snacks, help with homework, tutoring, and a fun social time for children.  Church members are needed to help with the children.  Sessions in February will be on Saturdays, February 9 and 23, from 10:30 am to 12:00 pm.  Please contact Brenda Ceplecci or Pastor Perkins to help.

Come join our Grand-families’ support group for a Special Event.  Are you caring for a child who has experienced a trauma?  Join us as we welcome Tim Schaffner, Executive Director of Trumbull County Children’s Services, who will make a presentation on the effects of trauma on children and tips for dealing with their behaviors.  The presentation will be held on Saturday, March 23, 2019, at 10:30 am with brunch and conversation at noon at St. Paul Lutheran Church.   PLEASE RSVP by March 20 so we may plan seating, brunch, and free childcare.  Call Pastor Perkins or Brenda Ceplecci.