God blesses his people when they trust and obey. After nearly a quarter-century of existence, the Church of Christ at North Second Street is overseen my elders and served by deacons. On March the sixth we ordained David Brown and David Muiznieks as shepherds for the flock. Shortly after Scott Ford and Jim Lahue were appointed as servants of the body. Forgive my personal excitement. God is good!
If we plant and water, will God give the increase? Amen. Here is a look at the past year.
Sunday Morning Attendance Contribution (Budget)
2018 49.3 $2109 (2059)
2019 55.4 $2478 (2268)
2020 40.6 $2444 (2450)
2021 50.3 $2842 (2450)
2022 65.4 $2906 (2625)
The attendance average is our highest in eight years (68 in 2014), and our contribution average marks the second year in a row of a new record in giving! God has been so good to us and it is wonderful to see fellow Christians respond. Our momentum is strong as we head into 2023. Our Sunday morning average for the fourth quarter of the year is 70-per worship service. For the second year in a row, our mid-week Bible study has enjoyed better attendance (42) than our Sunday evening worship (40). Praise God for his blessing and thank you for being part of a growing body of Christ.
In preparation for this article, I couldn’t help but notice how much COVID-19 has scarred us over the past three years. We have really weathered the storm well. The virus tore many congregations apart. Across the country, livestreams of services have been a combination of a blessing for the sick and aged, and a crutch for some who find getting dressed and encouraging the saints in person a little more persecution than they can stand. The attendance numbers for 2020 and 2021 reflect online services, Sunday morning only worship, pews six-feet apart, and a hundred other ways our lives were affected by the pandemic.
Along with putting ourselves in order biblically, came better organization. For the first time in several years we put together a VBS and a Fall mini-meeting. One side benefit of organizing our VBS was an influx of new teachers and helpers.
I wrote this in last year’s retrospective, “We have also seen a real surge in leadership from our young people.” This continues to be true and encouraging. Thank you to all who have served this work for so long (old and young). We have borne fruit. God be thanked.
We had a few losses, but mainly gains in 2022. Autumn Crosslin and Chris Steffen were added by new birth. The Cunninghams, the Marcus Griffys, Jennie Price, the Stipsits (Josh returned safely from Kuwait), and Dennie Thomas joined the work. While Austin and Jenna Kerr were married.
God’s Spirit has been with us. We have agreed instead of bickering. We have loved instead of blaming. We have focused on the cross instead of each other’s opinions. We have remained one in Christ. God has blessed us and I pray he will shower us with more work and workers in 2023.