Fully “Installed”

“It was he who gave some to be…pastors and teachers…” Eph. 4:11

It was with much anticipation that a friendly group from the congregations welcomed Rev. Tom Van Engen and his wife, Rose, at the airport in May. Shortly thereafter, on May 26th we celebrated the Lord’s calling of Pastor Tom to Faith Church — the culmination of a three-year search process!

Representing the Greater Los Angeles classis, under whose umbrella Faith Church falls, Rev. Sid Sybenga of Hope International Church in California came to officiate the installation service. The term “installation” elicited a powerful picture of refrigerator installation. For, the installer does not bring power or water with him. Instead, he connects up the machine to the power and water sources. Likewise, it is the Holy Spirit’s job to empower His servants by His Word. Pastor Sid commented on four roles of a pastor – namely preaching the gospel of the Kingdom, administering the sacraments, praying  and shepherding the flock. All must be done in the power of the Holy Spirit and the Word.

The ceremony began with a charge and a special prayer including the laying of hands. The congregation responded by completing their own vow before God. Gifts were presented to Pastor Tom by the elders and deacons symbolizing ministry gifts of the Spirit to be manifested among us as we minister to one another. Concluding the formal part of the ceremony, we recited the Lord’s Prayer together.

The morning worship service continued with Brother Sid bringing the Word from Colossians 1:23-29 where he charged Faith Church’s new pastor to remain focused on the gospel and not be sidetracked by attempting to do ministry in his own strength. He shared that as a servant of Christ there will be a need to rejoice in His calling, even when it hurts. The result will be greater fruitfulness.

Bro. Sid also had a charge for the congregation, as well, from Col. 1:3-8. A faithful minister requires a faithful congregation. We need to be aware that many pastors are resigning due to loneliness, job demands, conflicts within the congregation, and/or discouragement. For this reason, the apostle Paul often said “pray for me”. Rather than “kill the goose that laid the golden egg”, a metaphor that Sid alluded to, may we be like Epaphras whom Paul called “a faithful minister of Christ on (his) behalf.” (Col. 1:7)

As if the morning installation service wasn’t enough to fill our hearts, we concluded the day with a shared meal together. The timing couldn’t have been better! We were also celebrating ten years in our church building! The Garvilles family graciously prepared a slideshow commemorating that important event.

Filled with the hope and joy of the Holy Spirit, and with a pastor “fully installed” and plugged into the power source, we enter a new chapter in Faith Church Guam’s history.

You may listen in to the Sunday service in the sermon section of our site: http://faithchurchguam.org/sermons/faithful-ministry