eNews - June 4, 2021

Happy June!

We're full steam ahead for a Summer full of ministry and couldn't be more excited about it! There are wonderful opportunities to serve at VBS, Student Ministry, participate in choir and so much more. There's a fantastic Wednesday night Bible study for adults each week at 6:30pm and you can also view it online by clicking here if you're unable to attend in person.

We've also got several pieces of important information to share with you so be sure to completely read your Enews today for all the latest information.

Pastor Mike begins a new series this Sunday, June 6 in both worship services, entitled ...roots. Be sure to join us on campus or online. We're also receiving communion at both services and if you'll be participating from home, there is additional information down below.

The Summer Choir will sing on June 6, June 20, July 4, July 18, August 1, August 15, and August 29. If you would like to sing as part of the choir on one of these Sundays, please join us for rehearsal at 9am in the choir loft and plan to sing in the 9:30am morning service. Just prior to the sermon, the choir goes to sit in the sanctuary. Please contact Ben Ball with any questions.

Check out our Bible plan update as we finish up the month of May and enter June! For more information about the plan and to join us at anytime, please click here.

Message from Pastoral Search Committee:

If you have concerns or questions with the ongoing Senior Pastor Search, you are strongly urged to please speak with your elders. A complete list of current elders can be found here and their contact information is available in ELI or you can send concerns to Gayle Bundschu, Clerk of Session, who will then communicate with the Session.  Remember the words of Romans 14:19: "Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification."

Since our last report to Session regarding our progress of the Pastoral Search Committee on 3/23/21, we have received and evaluated sixteen applications for the position of Senior Pastor. Five of those candidates were interviewed via Zoom. The committee is not in agreement to recommend any of the candidates to the congregation. The Chairman will post the Church Information Form on the websites of other sources such as the ECO and Reformed Theological Seminary. We will also consider seeking other pastors and inviting them to submit a Personal Information Form. The committee requests your continued prayers as we faithfully and diligently pursue our work.

Some facts to keep in mind:


  • An average Senior Pastor Search takes 18-24 months to complete for a church the size of New Hope in the United States.
  • There are currently 35 vacancies for Senior Pastors within the EPC, as well as numerous EPC congregations with pastors nearing retirement age, so many churches are seeking to fill positions.
  • Pastor Mike has withdrawn his name as a potential candidate for Senior Pastor but will remain in his present role as Associate Pastor, leading the staff and carrying out the vision for New Hope Church.
  • The Pastoral Search Committee is compromised of the following members: Gayle Bundschu, Dan Ceilly, Bill Enslen, Duane Higgins, Kathy Orr, Betsy Sinke & Ken Walker(Chairperson).


Session also voted on the motion below and it was approved:

Upon motion duly made, seconded, and approved unanimously, it was resolved “That Session authorize the employment of a transitional pastor on a part-time, consultant, contract basis and that Session appoint a committee composed of the chairman of the personnel committee, the chairman of the pastor search committee and Pastor Mike Jones to recommend to Session a job description and a hiring process no later than the June Stated Session meeting."

This means that the plan is to move forward with the employment of a part time, transitional pastor to assist Pastor Mike with pastoral duties in the season before hiring a future Senior Pastor.

If you use our text to give system, please note there is a new number, effective immediately – 833.474.5698.

Zack Unkenholz, our Assistant Director of Student Ministry, has accepted a position with Open Door Church in Edenton, NC and he and his family will be relocating to the Inner Banks of North Carolina. Zack and Jess felt God calling them into a new ministry area with students and are excited to pursue God's plan for their family. We've been blessed to have the Unkenholz family with us over the past 18 months and continue to pray all of God's best for their family. Zack's last Sunday with us will be June 20, please continue to pray for our transition, our students and the Unkenholz family.

The Director of Student Ministry Search Committee is continuing to meet and has been interviewing candidates in the pursuit of hiring a Director. Steve Boutelle is the Chairperson of the Student Ministry Director Search Committee and can address any questions you may have by contacting him here. Your continued prayers are appreciated as the committee pursues God's will.

How to participate in communion

if you are part of the online New Hope family:

1. Purchase grape juice or wine 
2. Purchase Bread or Baked Crackers
- Unleavened bread is the best expression of the "bread" element. Unleavened bread simply is bread baked without a rising agent (most large grocery stores stock unleavened bread), but you can select any bread of your choice. 
3. Be Ready at Home with Your Elements
- Pastor Mike will direct you along with those who are gathered at the church through properly receiving communion. All you need to do is follow along online individually, as a family or with your group.

Matthew 26:26-30; Mark 14:22-26; Luke 22:19-20; 1 Corinthians 11:23-29

We urge you to stay spiritually connected with your church family and join us for weekly Sunday worship on campus at 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