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A Time for Rest & Refreshing - Pastor Doug, May 2024

As most of you know by now, I will be taking a three-month sabbatical over the summer months. This is a wonderful opportunity for me to take time to rest, relax, study, and pray -- all the things that will renew my spirit. It is an opportunity for me to disengage from day-to-day ministry for this period of time.

A sabbatical is a carefully planned time away that is meant to benefit both the ministry of the pastor and the church. Jesus himself modeled the importance of getting away from the noise of life to pray and ponder.

Sabbaticals are unique in that they give pastors space and the opportunity to disconnect from their usual role and function. A sabbatical is an intentional break from the regular demands, decision making, and responsibilities of normal ministry life so that upon return, the ministry and mission may be viewed from a new perspective.

I will be praying for all of you during this time away, and I would ask you to please keep my family in your prayers for a time of rest and renewal. We (Karen and I) are planning to start with a visit to Norway to visit her cousins and their families. After we return, I will be spending time in West Virginia with my spiritual mentor. We will also be visiting with members of our small group in Chattanooga, TN and in Richmond, VA.

My hope is that this will be a time for the congregation to care for one another and grow together. While I will miss you, my goal is to come back with new energy and enthusiasm for the ministry here at SMPC.

During the summer four ministers will be providing coverage for Sunday Worship services:

June - Rev. Saleem Ghubril, Executive Director of the Pittsburgh Promise, will be preaching from Luke’s gospel and the Book of Jonah.

July - the retired minister Rev. Paul Roberts

August - Rev. Lee Scott and Rev. Don Dawson

For pastoral emergencies, Rev. Mark Allio from Jefferson Center Presbyterian Church will be on call. Please call the church office if you need to contact Pastor Mark.

In His Grip,

Pastor Doug


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