Sunday, February 28, 2010

Our new church plant

So some of you know about our church plant that my hubby and I are involved in. For those who don't, here's the quick run down:

It's been a vision of our pastor to plant a church further east on Long Island than us but we've never taken the step to do it. We've looked at properties, talked to many people yet it just wasn't time, I guess.

My husband's responsibilities at church as a pastor were three-fold: college ministry, music ministry and all things technical (he was a computer engineer in his former life). At the beginning of the summer, he and our senior pastor spoke and DH felt that it was time to pass the college ministry on and we had a newly graduated college grad coming on staff as a youth pastor so that seemed to be a natural thing to hand off to him. So now hubby had two responsibilities. Just before our vacation last summer, our senior pastor told him that they were going to take away the worship ministry from him for no particular reason but he wanted a bit more of a hand in the planning of it so while he was still going to be a worship leader of one of the teams, he was no longer the worship pastor. So that left him with the computers. He decided that if this is where God wanted him (to be fixing computers), he'd go back to consulting and make triple the amount of money he was making now. He's excellent at computers, had clients who would easily hire him to do work but he hates doing it. He knew something was going on but not what it was. So while on vacation, and being very hurt and discouraged, he took the time to pray - a lot. We both did. He came to me part way through the trip with his calling. He had never considered it before but what about the church plant? We prayed about it and we both felt that this just might be the thing - but what would Pastor say? We'd find out when we got home.

A few days after coming home, hubby went out to lunch with the senior pastor and told him what he felt - that God was leading him to work on the church plant. Well, it turns out the reason nothing had ever been done on it was because pastor was praying for one of the men to come to him feeling the call to do it. He easily could have assigned it to someone but if he did, it wouldn't be their ministry but their job. So he waited years for someone to come and now he saw who was going to take this on. Wow!! Very cool!! So the next Sunday, it was announced to the congregation to shocked gasps and applause. That is where we started.

Fast forward to now. We've found a location to meet (a hotel) and have the full support of the church. It's now time to start getting more and more things together and one of those things was finances. The Christmas offering went to the church and we had more than $20,000 come in to begin the plant. Two weeks ago, Pastor challenged the congregation to pray and think about donating a week of the church plant apart from their regular offering. Last week, he asked everyone who was planning to take that on to come forward and we had about 90 people/families do so! We've already gotten about 70+ weeks already donated or pledged and our goal was just one year! Wowza! He said to everyone that this week would be the week to pledge ourselves to the new church plant. This meant that these people would become one year missionaries in the new church and be there to help with the infrastructure - nursery workers, children's ministry, worship, technical stuff, greeters, ushers, hospitality, etc. Well, today we had about 50 people pledge to do so!

This is such an amazing time for us! My husband will be the senior pastor but not always the pastor who will be doing all the preaching. Since we have so many pastors, we'd like to get them in to preach series at the new place. Of course we're also looking for a more permanent location but that will have to wait for a bit until we're a bit more self-supporting, most likely. But it's still so exciting!

It's so humbling to see God working ahead of us meeting our needs even greater than we could ever think. I just wanted to share what's up with us!


GrammyGoo said...

That is a fantastic update Ann!
Continued prayers for all of you as you continue forward in this new work for the Lord.
Blessings, Ella

Prairie Farmstead Ponderings said...

Singing praises to our Lord with you, Ann! Have I said before that I wish we lived closer to you? I'd love to attend your church!

I'll be continuing to pray as you and your hubby proceed in His work.

Mamame said...

Oh J - I wish you were closer to us too. I'd LOVE to meet you and give you a big hug. :)

Carrie said...

It's awesome to see God's hand at work!