APRIL 28, 2021

Pastor Dave reminds us that with the coming of warm weather, we once again return to Sunday Morning in house worship.  Our doors will be unlocked at 9:00 AM and the worship service will begin at 10:00 AM.  The recording of the Sunday service will be used for all of our available media and we will no longer record on Thursdays.  It will be wonderful to be a community together again.  The pandemic is not gone but is under control, so we must still take precautions.  Please ware your masks while moving about the church and taking communion and social distance outside of your own group. If you feel unwell or are not comfortable in coming back yet please join us online. 

Pastor Dave wants to now address what is going on in our United Methodist denomination today.  There is quite a lot of controversy.  Covid has had a severe impact in delaying meetings, conferences, and decisions about the splitting of the denomination.  Pastor Dave feels that the split is inevitable.  You could view this split as a disaster; however, Pastor Dave sees this as an opportunity for us to grow in our faithfulness in the mission of Jesus Christ and to grow as he has commanded us to be disciples. He feels that it doesn’t matter what name is above the church.  What matters is what goes on inside of it.  We should be just fine if we focus on what we are about, and leave the politics to the politicians.  Some people feel we, as the church, should take stands on issues.  Pastor Dave respectfully disagrees.  He feels our primary purpose is given to us by Jesus Christ. Not by a political movement which constantly changes.  The gospel message of Christ is forever and is of ultimate importance.  It does not divide generally but it unites us.  Human affairs are incredibly divisive.  Right now, people are afraid to state what they believe because others who do not agree with them will reject them.  Pastor Dave finds it unacceptable that the secular political sphere is intruding into our faith walk.  Our responsibility as religious leaders are to talk about biblical principals in regard to how we should live with one another, what the bible says about justice, and what it says about loving God and others.  The biblical view is how we all should view any issue.  Jesus says as you have judged so shallyou be judged.  We are to love our neighbor as a fellow child of God.  Every individual has sacred value and is intitled to dignity, respect, and love. If we get ourselves into politically charged religious values in our church, it shows the world that we as Christians are no different than anyone else.

Jesus calls us to be in the world and teach the gospel of Jesus Christ to anyone that will listen.  You must also be very careful about people or pastors who claim to be a servant of Christ and ensure that they are speaking biblical truths and not misleading their audience towards the political flavor of the day.  The bible calls them false prophets, sheep in wolves clothing.  The invitation Christ gives us is to come follow Him not any individual.  Read the bible for yourselves and contemplate what Jesus says.  As individuals we need to find Christ and the right church will follow.

Pastor Dave says that he will remain faithful to the mission of Jesus Christ no matter what how the denomination decides how they move forward with the split.  What matters to him is how people come into the relationship with Jesus Christ and live in the love of God.  He will keep us undated as things unfold.

God bless you all.

Pastor David Leistra

Summary provided by Lorna Magliaro, Administrative Assistant SBUMC

Breakthrough Prayer

Please add this prayer to your prayer time beginning on Easter Sunday, April 4th until Trinity Sunday, May 30th.

Mighty and Holy God, I know all things are possible through you. I ask that you show we the people of Sturgeon Bay and Jacksonport United Methodist Churches the way to flourish in our lives as disciples of your Son Jesus, and to be fruitful in your mission for us. Amen.