Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled, and do not let them be afraid.      John 14:27

The world can be a dark and disturbing place.  We certainly experienced the darkness and despair last week with yet another school shooting in Florida.  Our worship service on Sunday acknowledged that there is indeed a problem and that we are called to be a part of the solution.  Following Jesus is exactly that – FOLLOWING Jesus.  To that end, Forest Park Christian Church is hosting discussions that will eventually lead to action.

 After worship last Sunday, many of you signed your names in support of making a difference.  As we consider what that means and what that looks like, keep in mind that we are first and foremost Christians – followers of Christ.  We have all heard many viewpoints on the issues of school shootings and mass murder.  Our thoughts, prayers, actions, and debates MUST be centered on following Jesus and grounded in his example to all of us.

 Our first meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, February 27th at 6:30 PM at the church (Hutton Hall).  I am anticipating this meeting to last between 60 and 90 minutes.  It is important to note that this is a process and not a quick fix.  In this first meeting, we will be discussing the factors that lead to mass shootings in our schools and working on naming the problem.  As I said in my sermon on Sunday, this conversation needs voices from all over the spectrum for us to have meaningful dialogue.  This gathering is not limited to members of Forest Park Christian Church.  If you would like to reach out to neighbors and friends, I encourage you to do so.  If you are a member of the community and would like to join us in making a difference, I encourage you to do so.

 We have heard enough of the solutions that do not look to our Lord and Savior.  This is an attempt to be faithful to our calling and our God.  I hope to see as many of you there as possible.

 With much love in Christ,

 Pastor Bill Hemm