God is so worthy to be praised, for He is so good all the time! By God’s grace, we are blessed to experience a new day, month and quarter of 2020. Since so many who began this year are no longer alive, we should be ever so thankful to God for sustaining us amid this pandemic and perilous times.
St. John began this year with the theme: “Reaching Others For Christ.” Among many ways to do this, helping others for Christ is a great way to reach others for Christ. Philippians 2:4 reads, “Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others.” Naturally, people take care of themselves (self-preservation), but Paul challenges believers to also take care of others [especially others who are in need].
As the pastor, I commend many of our congregants for our diligence in outreach. For example, every Tuesday afternoon, we have dedicated St. John members who distribute over 150 boxes of groceries to people at both our South Campus and North Campus.
Moreover, our Benevolent Ministry is still committed to helping people in need, particularly St. John members. For instance, our church (through our Benevolent Ministry) is still helping St. John members who need financial assistance to pay their rent or mortgage.
In addition to the many ways St. John is helping people, we are now helping St. John parents who need financial assistance for their children’s school supplies and necessities. For further information, please contact Deacon Edward Kimble who is the Servant Leader of our Trustee Ministry.
After watching the Presidential Debate last Tuesday evening, I concluded that this was the worst debate that I have ever seen. I also concluded that “Change” is more needed now than ever, so I encourage everyone to prepare to vote. Protesting is often good, but we can contribute greater by voting; therefore, each of us should vote and encourage everyone that we can to vote.
The Church Anniversary
Our 77th Church Anniversary is the 4th Sunday in October (10/25/20). Unfortunately, we have been deprived of assembling together for over six months, but St. John is still strong. The Contra Costa County has now stated that churches can have indoor worship in our case as long as we do not exceed 100 people in the sanctuary; however, if COVID-19 spikes again, then indoor worship will no longer be permitted until conditions are better. Our date to reopen is based on God’s direction and our safety. Consequently, whether we celebrate in our Sanctuary or in another way, we encourage each member to budget a special Church Anniversary offering to give in October. Traditionally, we have given a dollar per year, but this year we are not going to ask everyone to give a certain amount. In addition to our regular Tithes and Offerings, we are asking each person to allow God to lead you regarding a certain amount which might be more than, equivalent to or less than a dollar per year.
On last Thursday, I encouraged everyone to Stay Connected to God through His word (read the Bible daily, Online Sunday School and Online Bible Study) and through prayer (praying at least three times daily, praying with prayer partner at least once a week and praying with others in our Wednesday Prayer Meetings at 12 noon or 6:30 pm). I also encouraged everyone to Stay Connected to one another (our biological family and our church family). For example, our Online Fellowships (chats) have been so inspirational, and I thank each of you who have participated and each Servant Leader who made it possible.
Tithes And Offerings
I pray that God will abundantly bless all the patrons of St. John. We currently contribute by mailing or dropping off our Tithes and Offerings to our St. John South Campus (662 South 52nd Street—Richmond, CA 94804) or by giving online through our website (sjmbc.org). If you are a member of St. John who is financially able but not supporting our church financially, allow God to bless you with more by giving today your Tithes and Offerings.
May God bless and sustain each of us.
Your Servant In Christ,
Dr. Kevin B. Hall, Pastor