A word from Reverend, Mark Buenafe, Senior Pastor
How time flies, as I, and we, realize that I am starting my third year with you together in ministry. What a blessing to be your pastor for another year.
On the one hand, there is the now familiar blessing of cycles of ministry and community. This has meant the weekly preparations of both the In-Person and YouTube worship, the natural movement of the seasons, both in the Christian and weather patterns and ministry realities of life, sickness, transitions and even death.
You have even experienced some of my own ministry emphases, such as with music and the celebrative parades.
However, there has been no temptation to take for granted that ministry in our times is just routine as many exciting unknown things are still around us. Although we may feel that the worst of the COVID-19 pandemic is past, with people still being infected (including me), this virus is still to be taken seriously with intentional health precautions. Praising God for growing survivability from this disease is tempered with the humble reality that many around the world have died in such a short period of time.
Further head-scratching, but no surprise in hindsight, has been the growing social unrest in our world today. The rationale for hatred of others, for whatever differences, has now been outwardly expressed through the war in Ukraine, gun violence and resentment towards a variety of changes in policies and laws.
Then our hot summer weather, with the ever threat of forest fires because of this drought, plus the inflationary prices in gas and products, can further discourage us.
Lord in your mercy.
And God continues to be merciful. The blessing that we can still celebrate life for a variety of reasons has not stopped even with the above-mentioned concerns. We plan gatherings to mark milestone events. We can dine-in or enjoy our favorite restaurants. We can still travel. Plus we are flanked by some of the most beautiful natural landscapes, being so close to mountains, valleys and the coastlines.
We also can continue to pray and hope and worship. Our God continues to bless beyond our wildest expectations. Sure, we will face discouragements and be burdened with concerns, but we also face the realness of God in our lives, always.
Looking forward to being in ministry with and for you in 2022 and beyond.
Rejoice, be grate-full, continue to give kindness, share God's Love and Hope.
Now to God who is able to do immeasurably more than we could ever ask or imagine according to His power at work in us. To God be the glory in the Church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations forever and ever. AMEN. (Eph 3:20-21)
By God's grace,