Friends, we celebrate the dedicated leadership of Joel Ferris as our outgoing council chair. I wanted to share his note to all of us. Joel, we thank you for your service. The good news is Joel will still be active on the council!

A Christmas Message from Covenant council chair Joel Ferris

As we celebrate Christmas in 2021, I think it might be valuable to reflect for a moment on the year that has passed and how we, as a church body, responded to some very substantial challenges. One of my favorite passages in the Bible is from Ephesians. As the Apostle Paul sat in chains in a Roman prison, he wrote of the thankfulness he felt, despite the hardships he was enduring, for God’s priceless spiritual gifts.
These gifts are joy, peace, faith, and hope. God and Christ are the sources of all these spiritual blessings–ones that we need to support us through the many ups and downs of life. As Paul wrote, “To Him who can do immeasurably more than we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us, to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever! Amen.” (Ephesians3:20-21)

As a church body, many of us have lost loved ones, either family members or friends, during this last year. These are losses that are hard to bear and take time to heal. During the suffering I speak of, we also had to deal with an unpredictable global pandemic that impacted all of us and our ability to express our grief while being surrounded by our fellow church members at Covenant. The isolation was hard and taxing. In addition to the pandemic, we had a pastoral transition at mid-year. So much uncertainty.

Out of these trying times, we said goodbye to Pastor Roger and Carla Hudson and said hello to Pastor Megan and James Madsen. We have now gotten to a point in December where we can once again, sing in person in our sanctuary (at least a little bit, and with masks on, of course). Your patience as a church body with pandemic protocols has been remarkable and your faithful giving through it all has given us the ability to carry forth our mission during the last year.

I will be stepping aside in a few weeks as Council chair and passing the proverbial baton to my fellow Council member Sandra Boudreaux.

Christmas blessings to you and your families,
Joel Ferris
Covenant UMC council chair, 2021