Moderator’s Message: 2014 Theme

John vest headshot formalBy Rev. John Vest, 2014 Moderator of the Chicago Presbytery
Theme: Proclamation of the Gospel for the Salvation of Humankind

The Presbytery of Chicago, along with the others in the Presbyterian Church (USA) and every other expression of Christianity in North America, is faced with significant adaptive challenges in the midst of a rapidly changing world and a diverse array of ministry contexts. As we work to turn the page to a new chapter of our life together, we have committed ourselves to deepening our relationships with each other and are actively looking for God’s new vision for our shared mission and ministry.

During this year of transition and change I want to challenge the Presbytery of Chicago to move beyond the pain of our past and not be overwhelmed by anxiety about the present and future. As we experiment with new ways of gathering together and contemplate new organizational models, let’s not lose sight of our primary calling to bear witness to the good news of redemption and rebirth, the good news of peace and justice, the good news of new and abundant life in Christ.

Let’s rediscover our identity and purpose by going back to basics. The first of our six Great Ends of the Church is “the proclamation of the gospel for the salvation of humankind.” Throughout this year, I will invite our assembly preachers to reflect on their understanding of the gospel and salvation and how this informs their practice of ministry in their particular contexts. As we celebrate our unity in the gospel we will no doubt hear a diverse range of perspectives and commitments. I trust and anticipate that we will experience God in the plurality of faithful voices and ministries that is the Presbytery of Chicago.

Learn more about John in the Moderator’s Q&A.

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