May 15, 2020
Dear Foothills Family,
Well, here we are in week nine of provincially-prescribed social distancing! I thought it might be time for a pastoral conversation around various issues and opportunities facing the church. Let me begin by saying how incredibly proud I am of our leadership community and the way they creatively and faithfully serve us all.
Our Board has been meeting twice a month to seek God's leading through this pandemic. I can't begin to express how deeply grateful I am for their faith, wisdom, courage and concern for our church. We are truly blessed!
Our staff has risen to the task of leading and caring, as they have found how to keep ministries alive and well. Here are some of the ways they've been connecting with our Foothills family and friends during this time:
- Our Youth and Young Adults are meeting daily for devotions and weekly for teaching and connection. They have been doing this under the guidance of our Youth Pastors, Andrew, Nicole and Nick. Nicole has just begun her maternity leave, and we welcome their baby girl to Foothills!
- In Adult Ministries, Alpha finished their interrupted schedule last week. They begin a new session this coming week. Pastor Jerry wants you to know that there is room for you and your friends! To register, go to bit.ly/springalpha2020.
- In Intercultural Ministries, Pastor Patti Love and her associate Hannah Friesen continue to provide all kinds of programming. They have been exceptionally creative in their ministry.
- Pastor Katie and our Children's Team are continuing to offer both resources and curriculum to parents. They have also created pathways for parents to lead their own Sunday School experience at home.
- Pastors Carla, Brad and Eric are offering new and relevant studies that many are joining and enjoying!
- In Senior's Ministries, Pastor Roland has created a group of "Phone Angels" to connect with seniors in our church family.
- Pastor Tim has been busy visiting Life Groups via Zoom and connecting with leaders. He also leads our Justice and Compassion Team, which has been involved in supporting many families.
- Tereasa Basaraba, our Office Manager, is keeping the office functioning as required. The office is open for you to drop off your offerings Monday to Friday from 10am to 3pm.
- And, of course, our Director of Worship Arts, Rebecca Schnell, and her team continue to work very hard to ensure we have meaningful weekend services that draw our hearts to God and his purpose for our lives.
Thank you, everyone, for your faithful support and prayer for all our teams. We are beyond grateful for your words and expressions of encouragement. We don't know how long we will be online-only, but we will continue to focus on Jesus and his mission for us as individuals and as a community of Jesus followers.
A few commonly-asked questions:
First, how are we doing financially?
We have been blessed by God's provision for us through each of you who faithfully and sacrificially give to support the church. Our giving in April was very strong, with us receiving 86 percent of what we budgeted in our key funds for that month. This strong giving, along with reduced expenditures, allowed us to transfer $25,000 from our General Fund to our Missions Fund. This is something I am deeply grateful for, as it allows us to keep supporting this area of church life we value so deeply.
We are incredibly thankful for those who continue to support Foothills. Our giving over the first two weekends in May was strong, putting us slightly ahead of budgeted giving – so thank you! We will continue to be the best stewards of these resources, which will be used to fulfill the vision God has given us as a church. We covet your prayers and your support.
Second, when will we meet again, in person?
We simply don't know. We are thankful for online services and ministries, but we're still missing the full expression of community that we both long for were made for. There was movement this week from AHS, allowing some services of 50 people or less to gather. I'm hopeful these numbers will keep growing.
While we will continue letting our government leaders know our concerns, we will trust our health officials. We will keep doing the right things the right way.
Third, what about our AGM?
Some have asked about our Annual General Meeting, which normally happens in June. We have decided to delay this meeting until sometime this fall, but we'll let you know when the date has been finalized. The Board is working on a budget for the coming year, and in these unprecedented times, I'm sure you can understand the complexity of that process! Again, thank for praying for us. I came across this reading the other day, and thought it would be a great way to end this update:
May we continue to take great care of each other, and use this time of social distancing to connect with God and others. As we often say: Stay well, stay safe, stay hopeful and be blessed! I miss seeing you each weekend and look forward to the day we can gather again.