“O God, from my youth you have taught me,
and I still proclaim your wondrous deeds.”
This Sunday, May 20th, is a special day in the life of the church. It is Pentecost. It is a day when we acknowledge the work of the Holy Spirit. This year we will have three young people make their profession of faith. It is also the time when we receive the Pentecost Offering. The Pentecost Offering unites us in a church-wide effort to support young people in Christ and inspire them to share their faith, ideas and unique gifts with the church and the world.
Each year on Pentecost Sunday we celebrate the gift of the Holy Spirit and the birthday of the church. The Holy Spirit remains with us still, connecting us with the church of the past, continuing to inspire the church of today and pointing us to the church of the future.
Studies show that a foundation of faith established during childhood through young adulthood helps ensure lifelong faith and service. Psalm 71 testifies to this same truth. Verse 17 says “O God, from my youth you have taught me, and I still proclaim your wondrous deeds.” The patterns and lessons established during these formative years continue to bear fruit throughout a person’s life.
The offering supports youth events sponsored by our denomination that brings young people from all over the country to share their experience of faith with one another, and learn how their faith can help them address challenges all over the world. Or, our young adults may be guided through a year of intentional service where they discern God’s call upon their lives.
I feel like an infomercial—but wait, there’s more! The Pentecost Offering encourages congregations to minister to children at risk. This year, forty percent of the offering will be used to purchase school supplies for children at risk in Camden, NJ, where our young people will go on a mission trip this summer.
I invite you to pray about how you can support this offering. We can make a difference in the lives of young people here and around the country. We can let them know that the church cares about their situation and wants to make a difference.
P.S. – This message from Pastor Martha can also be seen in The Covenanter Volume XXXVII, Issue 10