Pastor's Blog

Meet Paul William Solberg

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I HOPE YOU don’t mind me taking this weekly space to share with you some of my personal reflections on becoming a grandfather. Quite honestly, there is not much else on my mind right now anyway. So, I might as well share my thoughts with you.

Every year I choose a theme word for the year. My theme word for 2021 is “generations.”  Anticipating the birth of two grandchildren this year (our daughter, Sarah, is expecting in July) is the reason I chose this word.

At the end of 2020, I was reading Psalm 145 and God gave me verse 4 as a verse to go along with the theme of “generations.” “Let each generation tell its children of your mighty acts; let them proclaim your power.” 

I am “blessed” because right now I am living in a unique space of time where four generations of our family are enjoying life together. Bonnie and I are blessed to have both sets of our parents as an active and healthy part of our lives while a fourth generation of our family is welcomed into this world. We don’t take that for granted and we treasure it.

I am “blessed” because of the heritage of faith that has been passed down to us will now be passed down to this sweet little boy, Paul. 

His middle name is William, named after my dad’s father. My grandfather, “Pop-Pop Solberg” died when I was seven years old. I have faint memories of him. He had a short and stocky build; he was what you think of when you think of a catcher on a baseball team and that is the position he played. I remember his warm smile. I remember him making Norwegian pancakes for us when he would visit. I remember his being “fun.”

A few years ago, I was speaking at Camp Spofford and a woman sitting in the back of the chapel introduced herself and told me that she remembered my grandfather. He was a Bible teacher in the EFree church she attended in Brooklyn, NY. She proceeded to tell me about the spiritual influence he was in her life and in the lives of others within the church where she grew up. After he retired from his job, he went into full-time ministry.

When Sam told us what he and Sarah named their son, our grandson, I couldn’t help but think back to my grandfather and to look forward with great anticipation of what God will do in this new addition to our family.

And so now here I am, the grandfather; the “Pop-Pop.” I have the wonderful role of loving, praying, supporting, SPOILING, and influencing another generation of faith. 

Out of the trials of this past year, has emerged new life. It is a reminder that God is always about the business of making something new.

This Saturday I plan on meeting my precious grandson, Paul, for the first time. I can’t wait to hold him, kiss him and bless him. I don’t know what God has in store for his life, but I pray that someday he too will tell his children of God’s mighty acts to those who come after him.

I am “blessed” to be a small part of it. 

Oh…and my son, Sam and his wife Sarah are doing well. Clearly you can see how the center of attention has shifted!

Thanks for letting me share my joy with you.

A Heartfelt Thank You

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PASTOR MIKE AND I would like to thank you, the congregation of WEFC, for the very generous Pastor Love Offering this year. 

We were deeply humbled by it and were touched by the outpouring of your love for us.  It is just one example among many of how we have experienced your constant care and love. 

Having been your pastor for over 17 years, I can honestly say that your love and care for us has been a constant in our time serving the WEFC family.  Having raised our four children under the arm of your warm embrace has helped them come to love “the church” as young adults and has shaped them as they continue in their journey of faith.  Bonnie and I are forever grateful.

It is not lost on us that this has been a difficult year and that the needs of the church and those who are hurting continue.  It has been inspiring to see how God has moved the generous hearts of our church family to meet the needs of our church, our missionaries, and those who are hurting within our church and outside of our church. 

And now to be included in that sweep of love and kindness is truly humbling.  So please accept our deep feelings of gratitude.

It has been hard not to see our church family week in and week out as we are accustomed to.  So, thanks for hanging in there and for staying engaged.  There is light at the end of this long tunnel, and it is my prayer that in the coming months we will be able to gather again on a weekly basis as we worship our Lord and stir one another on to love and good deeds.

Along with Pastor Mike, thank you...

Pastor Scott

Congregational Meeting Report

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AT OUR QUARTERLY Congregational Meeting, the following items were reported and discussed.

Financial Reports: Due to a very strong quarter in giving, it was reported that both the General Fund and the Missions Fund finished the calendar year with a positive working balance. The General Fund had a net income of $20,000 and the Missions Fund a net income of $10,000.  We are grateful for God’s provision and the faithful giving of our church family during this challenging time.

Executive Board Recommendations: The congregation was reminded that we will be voting on the revision to the Constitution and Bylaws at our upcoming April meeting. At the recommendation of the Executive Board, the congregation voted to accept the Special Rules for making amendments to the Constitution and Bylaws. The congregation has until the end of February to submit in writing to the Bylaw Committee any amendments they would like to propose to the Constitution and Bylaws. This is to provide ample opportunity for discussion over the proposed amendments.  The motion carried.

New Members: Virginia “Gini” Draughon and Cynthia Phippen were welcomed in as new members.

Ministry Reports: The following Ministry Reports were given:

  1. David Rucquoi gave an update on volunteer opportunities with Amirah, a long-term safe home for women who have survived prostitution and sex-trafficking.
  2. Leah O’Leary gave an update on HOW. Hands Open Wide continues to serve many clients during this difficult time and appreciation was shared for the support of the church family for this ministry.
  3. Sharan Crabtree reported on Children’s Ministry and gave an update on Bright Beginnings and their ability to still hold our pre-school despite the current pandemic. Sharan also announced that Children’s Church will begin on Sunday, February 7 during the morning service for children ages 4 to Grade 5.
  4. Matt Lloyd reported on our Student Ministry, both Middle and High School. They have been meeting weekly since this past fall.

We are grateful for our ministry leaders and for all the volunteers they represent. Together we share the love of Christ in tangible ways.

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