Faithwalking’s 10-year anniversary celebration was a great time and a true success, thanks to so many of you! It was wonderful to share an evening with so many from the Faithwalking community, face to face. About 120 people came, and 7 Circles were represented with 11 tables. The room looked beautiful, the food was really good, and the chef even put out wrapped cookie mementos for everyone to take home. Each of the cookies had some take on “10 years” written across it in icing – a fun touch! Gail Edmonson, member of the Faithwalking Executive Team welcome all those gathered and served as emcee. Each of our three staff leaders shared some 10 year-end thoughts with the group: Jim Herrington celebrated our past; Marcos Leon celebrated our present; and Ken Shuman cast vision for our future, reminding all those who were present the “why” of Faithwalking and the challenges of living in a regressive society. And at the end, Faithwalkers donated generously toward the work of transformation that we have before us in 2018 and onward.
We are so grateful to the many who contributed toward the banquet beforehand, those who came, and those who shared their resources at the end. If you were not able to make it, it is not too late to donate in honor of this anniversary! If you would like to do so, you can make a contribution via one of the options below.
We would also like to share two important handouts from Ken Shuman with you that were distributed during the banquet, one titled “Why Faithwalking?” and the other “Five Characteristics of a Regressive Society.”
Finally, we want to share with you a letter that Andy Sytsma sent to the Faithwalking team the day of the banquet. Andy and Jacie Sytsma pastor New Life Community Church in Spring and are the leaders of a Faithwalking Circle. Thanks, Andy!
Hi Jim, Ken, Marcos, Trisha, Jeff, Todd and Jerry, (cc: Jacie)Greetings! I am sad that I won’t be able to attend the FW 10 Year Anniversary Dinner tonight due to a prior out of state trip I had in place several months ago. So I am writing to let you know how joyful I feel that we are celebrating 10 years of God’s faithfulness together.There are a few things I can point to as significant markers in my life, things that have shaped who I am and changed the course and texture of my life. My faith, my family, my experience growing up as a missionary kid, Jacie, having kids and being a pastor have all been formative. But going through FW and doing this in community with you and others is also one of those formative things.I remember in seminary latching on to the teachings of Neil Plantinga. He made the gospel come alive for me — both the rhythm of dying to yourself and rising with Christ (personal transformation) and the big broad vision of God restoring shalom (community transformation).These were great concepts but it wasn’t until FW that these took on both a very personal and experiential nature for me.I’ve had to both confront the ugliness of my negative vows but also feel the joy and freedom that come from knowing where these come from and gaining tools that helped me to live into the identity that was mine in Christ.I’ve also been broken over the profound lostless of people far from God and the deep brokenness that is all around us in our world. Yet, at the same time filled with hope as I see God on mission to bring wholeness in every area of life AND the amazing reality of being used by God to play my part in helping him do this.I could say a lot more, but needless to say, I am different, Jacie is different, our marriage is different, our church and our leaders are different, and by God’s grace, our community is different.So thank you. Thank you for your hard work, humility, steadfast leadership, authenticity, courage and love. I am deeply grateful and want to mark this milestone by celebrating with you.To God be the glory!!In Him,Andy
You can participate in this anniversary celebration by giving, via Authorize.net (using e-check, credit/debit card), PayPal, or Venmo, below. Please note “Banquet 2017” with your donation.