The following is a slightly edited letter sent out to our members and other friends who contributed financially to the mission of our church this past year. But in addition to some financial news, it serves as a brief review of 2019 and a look forward into 2020. Enjoy!
“Greetings! I hope 2020 has been good for you so far. In any case, the Lord is good, and I pray you are continuing to put your trust in Him! Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight. (Proverbs 3:5-6)
The start of a new year, as usual, has been a time for me to reflect on what has taken place in our church over the past year. In 2019, we completed many capital-improvement projects: a much-needed exterior paint job; a new back porch; new tiling for our fellowship hall and bathrooms which replaced old, stained tile that was cracking; and a refurbishing of the garage located on our Outreach Center property. For much of the year, we had three on-going adult Bible studies, one in Spanish. And speaking of Spanish, we started “El Camino,” a Spanish-speaking worship service on Friday nights. Our youth group grew (it basically doubled in size), and you may have noticed the youth being more active in worship leadership and service over the course of the year, in addition to the fun they have had. These are just a few of the highlights.
Financially, there is good news and bad news. There’s always good news and bad news, isn’t there? A husband asked his wife, “Honey, would you like the good news first, or the bad news?” The wife said, “Either one.” The husband told her, “I’m losing my voice.” She replied, “O.K. What’s the bad news?” For us, the bad news financially is that we spent more than we received in general offerings and fund-raisers. $167,453 came in, and $178,785 went out, for a loss of $9,878. The good news, however, includes:
- we look much better at the end of 2019 than we looked in 2018. At the end of 2018, we had a much greater loss, not because expenses were much greater, but because income was much less. In fact, 2019 income was up $20,816 from the previous year. That’s something to celebrate!
- we have had other donations over and above our general offering that will help us cover the costs for our new Outreach Center project. These include a variety of financial and other gifts. For example, one gift was a 2011 RV, given by a generous person in our congregation, that we sold for $4,000, all of which will go toward the project.
- other pockets of money continue to help various ministries. For example, Nada Beck, who passed away in 2014, left the church money in her will, and we continue to receive $1,000 per year in interest money, to be used for women’s ministry, children & youth ministry, and leadership development.
In the coming year, we have a number of goals, including:
- break ground on the new Outreach Center, and if all goes well, see the project completed.
- support the youth as they go on a summer mission trip, rather than camp this year. Check out youthworks.com to learn about the Christ-centered mission trip (likely to San Diego) in which they will participate.
- promote the growth of the church. Last year, we held only one CLASS 101 for new members. This year, we have three planned, along with a second year of D.I.G. (Disciples In Growth) classes for our 4th-7th graders. Moreover, we will to continue to expand our reach with technology, helping people to be part of our community even when they can’t physically be present. We hope you will invite your friends and family to join us, either in person, or through Facebook or YouTube. In fact, please “like” us on Facebook if you haven’t yet!
Of course, all of these goals are so that people have the opportunity to learn about Jesus, receive Him as Lord and Savior, and then grow as His disciples, shining His light by serving Him, serving our neighbors, and sharing His Word. I am thankful for your support of our mission!
In Him, Pastor Dave Hedgepeth