Dear Members and Friends,
This year has, to say the least, been a difficult one for the ATLPC family. Among us are many who have lost jobs, are dealing with health issues, or have even lost a friend or loved one to the Coronavirus. Many more of us have simply had to deal with the stress of living in lockdown, being physically isolated from our communities and colleagues and being kept from the things that make our lives feel “normal.” As they say, not normal is the new normal.
These times remind us of the fragile nature of our lives, and that no matter what material comforts and wealth we may surround ourselves with, it could all be taken from us by a virus embedded in a drop of water, or by an ember carried by the wind. In the 21st Century, our physical lives still hang by a thread.
What do we have, then? If we are a part of God’s family, we know that, in spite of the terrors of this world, our eternal souls rest safely in the shadow of His wings, and that no disease or disaster can separate us from His love. And we have our own community of brothers and sisters to support, care and pray for us. It has never been more important for us to support and share God’s love with one another than right now.
This year, our Stewardship thoughts are this: If you are facing a personal or financial crisis this year, please don’t hesitate to contact any of our pastors or deacons. They can assist you from the resources of the church while keeping your concerns confidential. Our purpose as a community of believers is to build each other up, and helping one another through times like these is at the very heart of it.
If God has blessed you and sustained you materially this year, we hope you will prayerfully consider how you can further the church’s ministries through your financial gifts. With so many in our church family facing financial difficulties, and with our long physical separation from one another due to the Coronavirus, giving this year has dropped. Through God’s grace we have been able to limit the deficit so that, with the help of a forgivable Payroll Protection Program (PPP) loan, we may be able to come through 2020 without having to dip substantially into our reserves. However, as lock-downs and social distancing requirements appear to be continuing into the new year, we expect 2021 to be as challenging as 2020. In addition, we are still obligated to make a payment of $100,000 to PCUSA early next year from our Building Fund for the purchase of our church facility. So we hope that you will consider the financial support of our church ministries as a part of your calling, and look for ways to step forward, both in your giving for the remainder of 2020 and in making your 2021 pledge.
Enclosed you will find a 2021 pledge card with spaces for you to give your support to both the General Fund and the Building Fund. On behalf of Session and the Stewardship Committee, we ask that you prayerfully consider how God is calling you to support both funds. You can return the card to ATLPC by mail or by dropping it off in the church mail slot (at the Commonwealth entrance) any time before December 18. Alternatively, you can pledge online by filling out our Google Form at www.ATLPC.org/pledge2021/.
If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us. May God bless and honor your generosity.
In His Service,
Elder Ken Wong