With the installation and ordination of our new session class of 2017, we say thank you to the class of 2014 as they gracefully exit their term of service on the session at First Pres Argenta.
Floyd Hicks and his wife Karen have completely overhauled this inside of our facility during his (their) tenure on session. Remember when the fellowship hall looked like a hospital waiting room? New chairs, new paint, revamped curtains and curtain rods have completely transformed the space. Because of their tireless work on our closets and storage areas, we actually know where to find things now! They were also a part of jump starting adult education efforts outside of worship–monthly Sunday evening gatherings that morphed into weekly adult Sunday School. Pretty much anything you see at our church that looks nice now, Floyd and Karen were involved in making it happen.
Natasha Deal was one of the pioneering members of our Wednesday Night Wine Bar Bible study that has continued for over three years now. She has been a driving force behind adult education opportunities and is responsible for initiating many mission and outreach projects that reach beyond our church walls. She and David Murray (see below) are responsible for beginning a simple outreach that has grown into a giant 4th of July Celebration each summer. Natasha can be found rolling the garbage cans out the night before pickup, in the kitchen helping cook for any number of projects/people and basically doing whatever needs to be done in worship, in Sunday school and all around the church.
Even though Jim Haney has rolled off the session, he continues to work with Kay to keep up with our finances, make sure we pay the applicable taxes and fees and keeps us in the black. There is no telling how many hours he has logged looking over spreadsheets in service to our church, letting us know how much we have given and fixing things the pastor screws up. You can find Jim helping Miss Beverly get to church on Sunday mornings, washing dishes following events and showing up to help just about anytime help is needed.
David Murray is the mastermind behind the First Pres beer brewing operation. He has been a co-conspirator in starting up a number of events and programs, including 4th of July celebration and P3. He is constantly calling us all to do things that we think we don’t have enough people or money to accomplish because he actually trusts that God is in this. He has fixed more broken things on the interior and exterior of the church than we can count, and he tries really hard not to scare our older members when he calls to check on them.
We know that the ministry of Floyd and Karen, Natasha, Jim and David will continue now that they are “uninstalled” elders, but we recognize and appreciate the time and energy they gave over the past three years on our session. There has been tremendous growth–both physically and spiritually–during their tenure. Perhaps their greatest collective gift is their ability to cast big visions, and their willingness to put in the sweat equity that it takes to make visions become reality.