Bishop's Letter to Pastor Jerry and the UPG
As a followup to his February 16 visit to the UPG, Bishop Samuel Zeiser of the Northeastern Pennsylvania Synod sent the following letter:
It is hard to put into words the gratitude I feel in response to all the kindness that was extended to Linda and me during our visit with members of the United Proclamation of the Gospel on Sunday, February 16. The expressions of hospitality began the minute we walked in the door of the church and they continued until we drove away. Please accept Linda’s and my deep gratitude for all that was done to welcome us, to share expressions of affirmation, and to present us gifts so beautifully made and so generously offered.
The spirit of the assembly gathered at Light of Christ Lutheran Church was joyous in a way that not only embraced Linda and me with love, but also in a way that empowered members of the congregations for new life in Christ Jesus. From my perspective as synod bishop, I view United Proclamation of the Gospel as one of the top three new ministry developments on the synod territory.
Please convey to the members of UPG my appreciation for their warmth and welcome, extended so abundantly to Linda and me. The thoughtfulness of their words and the affection in their eyes touched us in ways that will abide with us. I must say particularly that I will always remember being escorted forward by the youngest members of the UPG. I believe I now know the feeling in the hearts of the children in Matthew 19:13-15, when Jesus opened his arms and gave the children permission to gather around him. UPG’s children bore witness to me to the unimaginable love of Jesus.
And, for beautiful flowers, tasty refreshments, and many pleasant conversations during fellowship following worship, Linda and I are truly thankful.
God bless you and the ministry of God’s people who participate in the United Proclamation of the Gospel.
The Rev. Samuel R. Zeiser, Bishop