St. Peter's Blog 'Personal Reflections' from St. Peter’s Evangelical Lutheran Church – North Wales, PA's Blog

Personal Reflections

Image Wednesday, Dec 23, 2015
Author: Pastor Andreas Wagner

"Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer." Romans 12:12

(The poicture is from our confiirmation celebration on April 19, 2015)  

December 2015

Dear people of St. Peter's,

This was a memorable year with many stark colors and contrasts.  In  February I traveled to Haiti with Food for the Poor. The excursion into one of the materially poorest countries in our hemisphere opened my eyes for the types of destitute realities many people in our "global village" endure on a daily basis. I felt that it would be important for our congregation to become more aware of and more involved in ministries that reach beyond our immediate suburban bubble. A new ministry group for this type of global focus was formed and several initiatives started. The group decided to call themselves "SPOT"  (St. Peter's Outreach Team.) For this coming year the group is pursuing a bigger goal: to help sponsor a new farm in Haiti. Fundraising for that will include a golf tournament and a crowd funding initiative.

On a personal level, our family was tested. As you know, our son Sam was very sick and unable to participate in school for almost half a year. It was an extremely worrisome experience which tested our faith and our resilience. We are so grateful that Sam is now so much better and for all the people who cared and prayed for him. Of course I know full well that many families in our church community go through frightening stuff every year. For all of you I selected Romans 12:12 as a reminder.


What a rollercoaster it was regarding my so-called Sabbatical! I want to emphasize that our family's plans to spend extended time in Germany was not initiated by my desire to "have a Sabbatical." It was really just a wonderful opportunity for my wife to get an overseas assignment through her company, for me to reconnect with home and for my children to learn culture and language first-hand. We had it all worked out with coverage for eight months (thanks, Amy and Ed!) and then the company changed course and everything fell through. In the meantime I had been approved for a study grant from the wonderful Louisville Institute. So, an alternative plan was devised, which  calls for a four month Sabbatical from May through August with us spending most of the summer next year in Germany. It will be a very special time and we look forward to it. It will also provide some savings for our congregation.

As we enter the new year, I am hopeful that we will address our needs in the area of youth and young adult ministry with a new part time staff, something we meant to do already in 2015.  Overall, St. Peter's continues to grow numerically (and consistently so!) but also in the scope of ministries and involvement of our people in the work of God. We have added one new ministry every year for the last several years...


I am proud of what we are able to accomplish together with the inspiration from God, the dedication of our staff and so many engaged volunteer church leaders.  It is very special. Thank you so much and stay tuned!


Yours in Christ,

Pastor Andreas Wagner




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