eNews - April 2, 2021

Happy Friday Friends!

Our plans for Holy Week are well under way and we'd encourage you to think about inviting a friend (or two!) to join us for our services. Our schedule will be:

Good Friday (April 2)

 

  • 6:30pm – Sanctuary choir in service | On campus and online

 

Easter Sunday (April 4)

 

  • 6:45am Sunrise Service - Watch the sunrise from the front patio area of the sanctuary | Service is fully outside | On campus only
  • 8am Traditional - Sanctuary choir | On campus only
  • 9:30am Traditional - Sanctuary choir | On campus and online
  • 11am Contemporary - Praise band | On campus and online

We told you it was coming and now IT'S HERE! We're excited to share with you a number of new Connect Groups and invite you to register today for one or maybe more! Descriptions of the groups and all the details you need can be found by CLICKING HERE. Don't miss out on this fabulous opportunity to learn something new, find a friend or draw others to Christ! Living out the gospel together 


All programming is back in action beginning THIS WEDNESDAY evening, April 7 at 6:30pm! Adult Bible study with Beth Hoving meets in the sanctuary. In the Educational Building, MOMtourage meets in Room 208 and Fight Club meets in Room 210 and all of our ministries for kiddos from preschool through high school are ready to see everyone again! Click here for all the details!


Join Pastor Mike for this month's Bible Reading Plan Update!

You can find out more about the plan by CLICKING HERE.


The Well begins their new study, The Way Home, on Wednesday, April 7 at 10am. Enter the story of Ruth like never before in this six-week study with Tessa Afshar. Please CLICK HERE to register and find out the details for purchasing your book.


Our congregational meeting is scheduled for Sunday, April 11 immediately following the 9:30am service in the sanctuary. The purpose of this meeting is to vote on accepting the proposed by laws that were presented in our informational meeting on March 14. The meeting will also be available on Zoom and the link will be available in next week's Enews. If you have any questions regarding the by laws before our meeting, please contact Gayle Bundschu, Clerk of Session.


The search committee continues to work together and requests that we, as a congregation, continue with intentional prayer for the search. Each week, we'll share an outline of specific ideas to guide your prayers. Thank you for joining with us as we seek God's plan for New Hope.

PRAYER PLAN

 

Day 1 Scripture Reading: John 13: 34-35
Prayer Prompts: Pray for the search committee and the church to be obedient to Christ's command to love one another. Pray the church's Christ-like love will be seen by the world.

Day 2 Scripture Reading: James 1:5-8
Prayer Prompts: Pray for the search committee to seek God's will as they continue to review resumes and contact potential candidates. Pray for church leaders to seek God's will in the interim.

Day 3 Scripture Reading: Isaiah 55: 6-9
Prayer Prompts: Pray that in times of discouragement, the search committee and the church will seek the Lord diligently and have confidence that He is at work bringing the church and future pastor together.

Day 4 Scripture Reading: Galatians 6:9
Prayer Prompts: Pray for the search committee to not grow weary in their work. Pray that the search committee and the church will be able to see God's hand at work bringing you and your future pastor together.

Day 5 Scripture Reading: Hebrews 13: 17
Prayer Prompts: Pray for your future pastor to faithfully shepherd the church and for members of the church to willingly and joyfully place themselves under his servant leadership.

Day 6 Scripture Reading: Proverbs 2: 2-6
Prayer Prompts: Pray for your future pastor to seek God's wisdom in every area of life and decision making. Pray for the search committee to be attentive to the Lord's wisdom.

Day 7 Scripture Reading: Philippians 2: 1-11
Prayer Prompts: Pray that Christ's attitude of humility and servanthood permeates both the search committee and the church during the pastor search process.


Below you will find the notes from the Informational Meeting that was held on Sunday, March 14.

New Hope Presbyterian Church
Constitution & By-Laws Information Meeting
March 14, 2021
 
The Session of the church, after two years of work and review, has proposed a new Constitution and By-Laws to the congregation.  The proposed document was sent out to all active members via our church communication system known as ELI.  Members were notified of an informational meeting to be held on March 14, 2021, in Room 212 at 10:30 AM, which could also be attended by Zoom, for questions and discussion.
 
Moderators of the meeting were Art Hunkins, currently inactive elder and former Clerk of Session, and Brad Starner, Director of Business and Finance, both of whom were on the committee to create the new document. Copies of the current governing document and the proposed were available.
 
Brad began the meeting with a brief history of New Hope, how we came out of the PCUSA denomination in 2008 and needed to immediately incorporate according to the State of Florida laws and regulations. The incorporating documents were based on the former church documents and PCUSA guidelines.  Since then, New Hope became affiliated with the Evangelical Presbyterian Church (EPC).  The new documents are based on the EPC Book of Order and many references in the new document (BOO, BOG, BOW, BOD) directly refer to that Book of Order.  The EPC website www.epc.org has viewable and downloadable copies of this and many other denomination resources.
 
Questions asked at the meeting:
 
Q1:      What has changed? We didn’t see the old version for comparison.
A1:       Everything.  The former document was so different from what was needed that revising it was not possible. A new document was created.  The document sent out is what the Session is presenting for review and approval. The former document is available here today or upon request, if desired.
 
Q2:      Why does the Session revise the document and then present it to the congregation?
A2:       In the Presbyterian form of government, the congregation elects the Session members called “elders”.  The elders are members who govern the church as “ruling elders”. The pastor or pastors are “teaching elders” who are not church members but are members of the Presbytery.  The Senior Pastor is usually the Moderator of Session. Our Presbytery is a group of EPC churches in Florida and the Caribbean.  Each church owns their own property, and each Session governs their local church.  In the EPC, the Presbytery serves the local church.
 
Q3:      Who is responsible for the church?
A3        The members elect the elders to represent the church and are responsible for the financial, property and spiritual health of the church.  In Session meetings, they review and vote on all matters that affect the church. 
 
Q4:      Does the Moderator vote? What happens in a tie vote?
A4:       The Moderator can vote.  However, the business of the church is not run by a simple majority vote, but rather by consensus.  After discussion, any issue that seems close would not go to a vote.  After prayerful consideration, it would be postponed to a later meeting for more information and prayer. In most cases, the votes are unanimous.  Church members may also attend the Session meetings, but only the elders are permitted to vote. The regular Stated Session meetings are on the 4th Tuesday of each month at 6 PM.
 
Q5:      Are these new documents in accord with the tenants of the EPC.
A5:       Yes.
 
Q6:      What is a quorum of the church and when will the Constitution and By-Laws meeting be?
A6:       According to the EPC, a church of our size requires attendance of 10% of the members at a congregational meeting to meet a quorum.  At this time, that is about 95 members. The new by-laws, in accordance with the EPC guidelines, will include virtual (Zoom) participants in the constitution of a quorum.  The Session has set a congregational meeting for Sunday, April 11th, at 10:30 AM, between the 2nd and 3rd services for the purpose of voting on the new Constitution and By-Laws.


We urge you to stay spiritually connected with your church family and join us for weekly Sunday worship on campus at 8am, 9:30am and 11am or online, as well as checking out the videos from our staff and pastors on the Experience New Hope channel. We’re continuing to pray and if you have concerns about our plans to meet in person or have a prayer need, please do not hesitate to reach out to Pastor Mike at mike@newhopefortmyers.org or 813.368.1680.

With Love,
Your New Hope Team