Pastor's Note
A word from Reverend, Mark Buenafe, Senior Pastor

The milestone of my 60th birthday had me reflect on a word I heard a lot lately in personal, ministry and even in Rotary. That word is sustainability. gave the most concise answer: In the broadest sense, sustainability refers to the ability to maintain or support a process continuously over time.

As we come to this last quarter of the year, I will be identifying processes that I am directly into. The next Mark Your Distance columns will include insights on these specific processes to both enjoy and do the responsibilities of life. And while I hone in on such areas, know that these responsibilities will overlap with other processes in life.

The first area of direct sustainability is ministry.

The reality of the United Methodist Church is that we are in the time of major transition. This has consequently affected us locally as the Mariposa United Methodist Church.

However, the reminder that keeps me focused is that WE ARE THE CHURCH! By the working of God's Spirit, Christians impassioned for God formed this local expression of God's Church in this local community.

Currently, we have received the concerning and ominous message regarding our finances. To some, this is almost a déjà vu of what happened in 2020 prior to the shut down of the pandemic.

However, things are different in perspective and creative resourcing. Here are examples of those resources:

  • Abilities to do ministry. This includes our two worship experiences, the TGIF Kids Club, missions giving and the administrative functions of the church. We have yet to re-tap the FLOCK groups and other music ministries.
  • Outside learning resources such as the upcoming Nickerson Coaching events in October on Relaunching Your Church and Funding our Future. I only need at least two people to be with me to attend the training via ZOOM to learn and then to implement these lessons with our congregation.
  • The coming of the holiday seasons which naturally bring people back to God-awareness and church.

There is always more that could be done. With God working in our lives both as the Church and in our relationship with Him and one another, there will also be the opportunity and blessing to make the Mariposa United Methodist Church even better than it already is.

We can do this courageously and confidently because God is always with us.  Let us fervently pray for God's leading in both what to do and who to be as God's Church.  Rejoice, be grateful, continue to give kindness, share God's Love and Hope.  We go the distance with God always with us.

By God's grace,
Pastor Mark

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