Pastoral Letter to Bethany

January 7, 2021

Dear Bethany Family,

Yesterday was a tragic and disturbing day in our nation’s history. We condemn the actions of people who sought to dismantle our democracy with violence by inciting terror and insurrection in our nation’s capital. This threatened the safety of precious lives that work and serve in the Capitol Building, as well as the integrity of our democracy. As a church family, we declare these senseless acts as antithetical to the gospel of Jesus, whom we worship and follow. 

In this time of national crisis, let us commit to praying together, especially over these next two weeks. 

Almighty God,

Our nation is bitterly divided and hatred has taken root in our land. 

May you surround the Capitol and provide a place of safety for each person that serves our democracy in that place. Give leaders the courage and humility to leave behind rhetoric which seeks to divide or incite violence. May leaders seek your wisdom and choose to rise up with healing and uniting words for this very moment in history. May our leaders respect the constitutional process and the will of people’s ballots. May we honor the electoral process and work together to be a place where truth and justice prevail. 

Help each of us to see each other as human beings created in your image. May we remember that ultimately our allegiance is to you, not a political party or cause, but to Jesus who gave his life so that we might be healed of our hatred and prejudice.  

Over these next days as our country prepares to transition the power from one president to the next, we ask that you would place a hedge of protection around this process. May it be peaceful. May it provide hope for a hurting country.  

Spirit, breathe peace over our nation, especially in the capital. Heal the wounds from this violence and let us hear the truth. Empower the Church to remember who our true King is now and forever. We pray that Jesus’ way of love will prevail in all our hearts. 

Bethany family, let us hold on to our hope in Christ, who makes all things new (Revelation 21:5). It is the perfect love of Jesus that casts out fear and the truth that set us free (John 8:32). This is a time when we need to lean on the Spirit of the Lord, for “where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom” (2 Cor. 3:17).

In Christ who is our hope,
Doug and Danielle

Doug Kelly, Senior Pastor, Head of Staff

Danielle Merseles, Associate Pastor of Youth and Young Adults

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