Canceling youth

Today, I was in on the decision to cancel a youth summer camp. Wye were hopeful to get enough youth ready to attend, but we came up quite short of our goal.

It was a reminder how quickly things can change. This was a camp that has a lot of tradition behind it. I know people who received a call to ministry through their experience there. So many young people have learned to follow Jesus at this camp.

For us, COVID seemed to be the biggest reason we had to cancel. The past two years have been hard on a lot of our churches. Many youth groups have suffered as a result of the pandemic.

It’s a reality I’ve recognized for a while. Still, it’s hard when the consequences are unavoidable.

Pray. with me for our young people. Let’s pray we are able to connect with them and teach them to follow Jesus.

Stay blessed…john

The Imprint of Forgiveness


John 20:19-31

Summarize the passage by asking Who? What? When? Where? Why?


  • How does forgiveness connect you to God?
  • Why is forgiveness important for the church?
  • Recall a time someone modeled forgiveness for you.


  • How does this message help us make Kelsey known as a loving church?
  • What image/illustration from the passage and/or Sunday’s message caught your attention most?
  • What other questions do you have about the passage and/or message?
  • In what ways did the Holy Spirit challenge you through the message?
  • What do you have to do to make the message mean something to you?


Pray for families who are in turmoil with each other. Ask God to bring healing. Pray for our church to model forgiveness to our community.


Take time to memorize this 1 Bible verse:

If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained.

-John 20:23

May the Grace

I’ve been preparing for our church anniversary. We’re celebrating 150 years of ministry at Kelsey this November. So far, we’re catching up on planning. We had planned to prepare things back in March 2020. You know what happened then.

But I’m pleased. We have a small group of people who have slated a week’s worth of events. I’m grateful and honored this celebration came while I am appointed here.
One of the activities we planned is a memorial service. Normally, we observe All Saints Sunday. This year, our memorial service will be on All Saints Day, Tuesday, November 1, 2022.

As I’ve outlined the gathering, I wanted to include this blessing.
This week, as I’ve listened to it repeatedly and as I’ve reflected on the meaning for our gathering, I couldn’t help but get emotional.

May the grace of Jesus Christ
and the love of God
and the fellowship of the Spirit
be with us. 

The Lord bless us and keep us,
his face shine upon us,
his grace and his peace rest on us.

Amen y amén.

Stay blessed…john