As many of you know Pastor Aaron and I have served in ministry together for 12 years (6 years in Chicago & 6 here), and have been friends for 15 years. We have grown up in ministry together so to speak. He and his wife Sugar recently made the difficult decision to relocate to Springfield, OH. Sugar’s dad is suffering from dementia, so part of the reason for the move is to care for him and Sugar’s mom. In addition to family concerns, they also feel called to plant another church in their new city. Therefore, we (LHNC) are their sending church as they launch out and begin to learn their new neighborhood and city in Ohio. We had a very emotional going away party for them on July 23rd, and then a commissioning service for them on July 30th. Please pray for them as they get settled into their new home and community, and for our church as we grieve not having them with us.
Aaron and Sugar moved to Richmond in 2008 to plant Living Hope Neighborhood Church. They have embodied 1 Thessalonians 2:8 which says, “so we cared for you. Because we loved you so much, we were delighted to share with you not only the gospel of God but our lives as well.” They opened their home and their lives to the LHNC community, and both preached and demonstrated the gospel of grace. Josie and I have not only greatly appreciated their friendship, we have looked to them and learned from them as we have labored together in ministry.
Please pray for us as we enter into this new season of ministry. With Aaron leaving, that means that I will now function as a lead pastor. I still believe in the team concept that Aaron and I lived out, but it’s going to take some time to rebuild and reestablish a team. Please pray with me that we could install new elders in the next year to help lead the church. Also, please pray for us as we are sad about our friends moving. It’s surreal to not have the Roys here in Richmond. We miss them greatly. Yet, we trust that God has us here in Richmond according to His plan. We wouldn’t have scripted things this way, but we know that God writes beautiful stories, and we are leaning on Him as we enter into this new faith and ministry adventure. We know that God is still at work in and through LHNC. So please lift us up as we walk into this new season!
On Sunday July 30th, we dedicated Jaye Marie to the Lord. It was important to us that we did it while Aaron was still with us so that he could oversee the dedication. Our church family has truly been a family to us, especially for us being so far from our families in the midwest. We apologize for the quality of the video, but thought you would appreciate getting a glimpse of the dedication.
Back in mid-January Aaron and I attended a pastor’s network luncheon where we met Andrae, the Executive Director of a non-profit organization called the 117 Project (named after Isaiah 1:17). To make a long story short, his organization ended up running a summer day camp for K-5th graders at our church this past June/July. Praise God over 60 kids attended the 4 week camp, and heard every day the good news of Jesus! The camp was run by 25 college students and young adults who served as interns with the 117 Project over the summer. Below is a highlight video of the Love Richmond camp experience.
Continue reading “Love Richmond Day Camp”
We once again partnered with Christian Layman Church (Oakland) to host a 3 day community eye screening in mid-July. It was a beautiful scene to see our two churches and other volunteers serve our community together. This year’s screening was intentionally shorter than in summers past because we wanted to be more intentional about saturating our days with prayer, and slowing down to truly listen to and love the people who would come through our doors. We served approximately 230 people over the course of those 3 days, and we once again saw God answer prayers! Continue reading “Eyes To See 2017”
1st Annual LHNC Men’s Retreat (pictured above): On the last weekend in April we had our first ever (but definitely will be repeated) men’s retreat at New Life Marina. 15 of us went and stayed together in a large retreat house that sits on the water. It was such a great time for all of us. We had great times of worship together, fishing and boat rides, and some phenomenal meals. We are praying that the momentum of the retreat will mobilize our men to engage in discipleship groups and serve in ministry. Continue reading “Snapshots of Grace”
Josie and I got married in the fall of 2011 (November 5th). At the top of 2012 we decided to start trying to get pregnant, as we were both 34 at the time and excited about a potential family. 2012 was a great year for us. We dated each other, and got to know each other. But at the end of the year there was no pregnancy. When 2013 began, we asked people to begin praying with us for a baby. The year came and went, and still no baby. As we headed into 2014 we asked more people to pray. During our Rwanda trip that year in April our brothers and sister there prayed over us, crying out to the Lord on our behalf, and asking the Lord to expand our family. Continue reading “A Faith Adventure”
Last year I created this tool to help me look back and reflect on the previous year, and to think and pray intentionally about the year ahead. I’m working on mine for 2017 as we speak, but thought I would share the questions with others. I’m going to try to revisit this every month this coming year in order to check progress, adjust, pray more intentionally, etc. Hope this might be helpful to you as well…
Continue reading “Looking Back & Moving Forward”