According to Ecclesiastes, there is a time for everything and a season for every activity under heaven (Ecclesiastes 3:1). So, what time is it at FBC Arlington! It is a time for celebration!
First of all, the completion of our Sanctuary is a reason to celebrate. Wow! It is truly beautiful. It signals a new era of ministry for us as a church. For the first time in a really long time, our church now has a room equipped for all that we are attempting to do in worship. It really is the most functional room you could possibly imagine. It is outfitted for both classic and contemporary worship. In fact, the President of Epic (our technology provider) remarked that we were attempting to offer the broadest expressions of worship on one Sunday morning in one room that he had ever witnessed! Now – we have the room for it!
Second, we need to celebrate God’s provision. While we have much work left to do in this first phase of our Master Plan, we have completed the Sanctuary without borrowing any money. Praise God! You have been so generous in your support of this endeavor. We had projected that we would already be borrowing from our secured loan by this point. But, we have not had to exercise that option due to the strong giving from our people.
Also, we can celebrate our ministry context in downtown Arlington as we approach the close of 2017. We are surrounded by growth. New housing is being built all around us. New businesses are moving into our community. There is a renewed energy in our community and it is palpable. What a great opportunity for our church! We are strategically located in the heart of diverse, active, and dynamic community. Praise God for this season in life.
Next, we have been evaluating and analyzing our church staff structure. After months of study and prayer, the church has approved the new proposed structure. I am excited about its prospects. We have created new jobs and new job titles at the upper levels of our ministerial staff. Here is the new structure:
Senior Pastor: Dr. Dennis Wiles (no change!)
Associate Pastor of Spiritual Formation: Curt Grice
Associate Pastor of Pastoral Ministries: Dr. Joshua Stowe
Associate Pastor of Operational Resources: Dr. Barry Rock
Executive Minister of Counseling and Enrichment: Joe Eastham
Executive Minister of Administration: Dr. Terry Bertrand
Executive Minister of Mission Arlington: Tillie Burgin
All of our ministries have been strategically aligned in this new structure. We will be sharing more information in the future about how these changes will improve our ministry offerings here at FBC Arlington. Also, I am convinced this new structure provides us with the best opportunity to address our future needs as a church family.
And, we also need to celebrate the church’s approval of Ashley Berryhill in her call to serve as our new Director of Global Ministry. Ashley has been serving on an interim basis for several months—but now joins us full time in this role. She brings an expertise we have never actually had in this arena. You may remember she was the first cross-cultural worker we ever sent to the field under our new sending system.
So, this is a season of celebration here at FBCA! Praise God! I look forward to all God has for us as we live into a new reality.