In Touch – March 22, 2013
Posted on March 22, 2013 by under Touché,

Crisis-What Crisis?

Last night at consistory, after Mike Reynolds gave the financial report, I asked if we are in a crisis.  He said: “That’s your word not mine.”  As a nation we have been to the fiscal cliff and are now in the “Sequester.”  We are still trying to pull out of an economic downturn that has been going on since 2008.  HRC has weathered the financial downturn relatively well.  We have stayed consistent in our giving through this time.  We have not seen an increase, but we have not seen a decrease through this tough period.  This year that appears to be changing.  As we come into spring, we have seen our giving go down year to year.  That is a concern as we are now on a fiscal year. Spring is a significant time of giving before we enter the lower giving months of the summer and finish the fiscal year in September.  That is why I write this letter now.

Thank you for your giving and your faithfulness.  Through the tithes and offerings of HRC this year we have seen some amazing things happening.  Here are some recent highlights:

New Families and increase in worship attendance- I am amazed by the number of new families that continue to come to Hopewell.  Each week it seems that God is sending us new folks that are seeking faith.  In the last year we saw our worship grow by eight percent as we saw a Sunday to Sunday increase from a weekly average of 402 to 434.  On Maundy Thursday we will welcome 21 children to the Lord’s Table.  This will be our largest group ever.

Odyssey recognized by Abilities First– This month HRC was honored with the Community Service Award by Abilities First.  The ministry of Odyssey was lifted up as model for ministry to people with special needs.  Steve Dambra accepted the award and a member of the Odyssey community; Bruce Bogard, was honored as Citizen of the Year. Check out Bruce and Odyssey on You Tube here. 

Youth Ministry with Warren and Lynette- This year we are blessed by our hire of Warren Jee as our Youth Pastor.  His wife Lynette will lead worship this Sunday and around 75 young people will be lifting up praise in our sanctuary. Warren is leading the confirmation process that includes 15 young people going deeper in faith. God brought so many things together, including the finances, so that we could receive the amazing gifts that these two are bringing to Hopewell.

Reports in the paper are that the housing market is turning around.  The Dow Jones industrial average is at historic highs.  I pray that our financial “crisis” will turn around and we will see an increase in giving as faithfulness increases.  God is blessing us in so many ways and I know that spiritual blessing, spiritual growth and spiritual giving all go together.  Join me in prayer to see the blessings of heaven poured out upon us in every way, and join me in the challenge to give so that His blessings may continue to flow.

Thank You,   Taylor