• By: Pastor Betsy Dart

  • Gratitude to God fills my heart with the many expressions of support and care from you all as I begin anew with my battle with cancer. As the lessons in John 14 spoke to my heart, sometimes you hear words you don’t want to hear and sometimes you want more than you have but God is good all the time and has a powerful and merciful path ahead for us all. I ask for your patience and prayers in the next months as I complete my call among you. I will start chemotherapy sometime in July and that will ultimately bring a measure of relief from the effects of this disease. I have learned so many valuable things from you as you have taught me about your own experiences of downsizing households, moving again, dealing with medical needs, and faith ventures.

    In the coming months, the church councils of all three of our partner churches will be working with the SE MN Synod regarding a Synodically Authorized Minister (SAM) and the next steps in preparing for calling a new pastor. During this time, it will be wise to think about the God’s long range vision for the future of Greenfield and our area. There are new economic developments in the area as well as the impact of growth in Rochester. There are changes in agriculture that effect the density of population compared to decades ago. There are changes in technology that make possible new avenues for ministry (just consider the impact of our media ministry with DVD and cable broadcast of our worship services for example). Strategic and imaginative planning with other congregations in our area can help the church of the 21st century.

    With all that is yet ahead that is changing, there are many things that remain solid and sure. God's provision and protection will not fail; he is faithful. God's forgiveness gives us courage to move ahead boldly and even make excellent mistakes; he is love. God’s power and creativity will move mountains; he is mighty. God's people can continue to trust and follow. I am excited to see what God is up to in the years ahead. God has a mission for this world and God's mission has a church. The best is yet ahead for us all.

    Caregivers is a ministry opportunity through the Adult and Family Committee. In Christ's name, we encourage and grow in faith together. "Since God loves us so much, we also ought to love one an-other. God lives in us, and his love is perfect in us." 1 John 4:11-12 Our Caregiver Ministry has two goals: *To develop a network of intentional Christian friendship and care that includes committed leaders in addi-tion to the pastors. *To give intentional ministry through the Greenfield congregation to people in changing or transitional seasons of life.

    Some of the kinds of people who may benefit from Caregiver Ministry include new families in our community, persons with a medical condition that involves extended care, homebound in our congregation, or the elderly who are apt to have in-creasing changes in lifestyle, or per-sons with special needs.

    Caregivers are committed to make intentional contacts in the name of Jesus on behalf of the Greenfield community with a few persons each month. They will keep the persons in their prayers and visit or phone or send notes. The Adult and Family Ministry Committee is committed to supply resources as needed and give prayer support for caregivers and their ministry. This ministry strengthens our community and expands the outreach that pastors can give in the name of Christ

    If you would like to be a part of this Caregiver Ministry or if you would like to have someone visit with you, contact Pastor Betsy or Kari Schroeder, secretary of the Adult and Family Committee.