Hello GRC!
This coming Sunday, we have a fairly unique event in the life of the church.  It represents an aspect of what it means to be Presbyterian and a milestone in Josh’s pastoral ministry.  He will be installed as an Associate Pastor of GRC in the 2nd service on Jan 15th.   Since many of you were not around, or may have missed the service back in 2011, when Josh was Ordained and Installed as an Assistant Pastor (an even more unique event!), I thought I’d describe the process and its significance.
First, the logistics. It is the privilege and responsibility of members of GRC to elect (or not) any men to serve as official members of the Session.   As an Assistant Pastor, Josh has always been welcomed at Session meetings, but has not been an official member of Session.  During the Dec. 4th congregational meeting, the members elected him to become an Associate Pastor. The last step is an “installation” process conducted by our own Ruling Elders, Reverend John Hanna of All Souls Church, and myself at this Sunday’s second service (11:15am).
Second, the significance.  This doesn’t involve a change of his job description, nor is it really a “promotion” to greater responsibility within his job.  This change in his status recognizes that Josh possesses the core godly character befitting a shepherd of Christ’s church and it recognizes his dedication/commitment to GRC.  Frankly, it formalizes part of what Josh has already been doing as a spiritual shepherd among us!
How does this impact you?  And how can you respond?  For the congregation, this change in Josh’s pastoral status doesn’t change much in terms of ministry impact.  But for Josh and Betsy, this is a milestone that affirms Josh’s continued growth as a pastor.   So please congratulate him!  Drop him a note, and commit to praying for him that the Lord would use him in even greater ways than ever before.   And remember, after all the fanfare, Josh will continue to be a sinner in need of God’s grace: a man who’s a source of Gospel encouragement and who needs to be encouraged by the family of God!
Grace to you,
Peter