Dear Friends,

This week a group from our church staff went on a field trip. We went to watch and learn from a United Methodist church in Kansas City, Missouri. Like Royal Oak First, Good Shepherd in Kansas City is a fast-growing church. It was great to meet their staff and talk about how we can better serve our congregations and our communities.

I couldn’t help but think about all the things we do so well as a church here at Royal Oak First. We are talking this week about spiritual gifts and yes, we will look at the gifts that God has given us as individuals. But, I was reminded this week of the gifts we have as a church. The welcoming and inclusive spirit here is a gift. All of you do this so well and I hear it time and time again from new members and from people visiting our church. This is a welcoming place, a place where people feel at home and are able to worship God.

Of course, that church gift is fueled by the individual gifts and talents from each of you. Some of you are just good at saying, “Hello.” Some of you are great at giving a hug and some of you know when to just smile and give folks some space (that is a real talent). When we pull all of that together you have one big welcoming body, making Christ’s love real.

Join me on Sunday as we dig deeper into the gifts that God has given each of us.

Grace and Peace,

Pastor Myra

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