Hello, I am Rev. Jeff Coppage. I look forward to joining Fries as Pastor on Sunday November 27, 2016. That Sunday is the first Sunday of Advent, the beginning of a new church year. In the Moravian Church, we are passionate about Advent and Christmas. It is a time of patient expectation. A time of candlelight lovefeasts, a beautifully appointed sanctuary, and extended family gatherings. Advent is a season of HOPE, LOVE, JOY, and PEACE. I pray that a shared experience of renewed, Christ-centered hope be the Advent and Christmas gifts for all of us in these coming weeks.
At Fries, I will be serving as “Transitional Pastor”, also referred to as an “Intentional Interim Pastor.” This simply means that I will be leading Fries in the coming year or more in the time of transition between long-term pastors. I will have the traditional pastoral responsibilities such leading worship, preaching, teaching, officiating at baptisms, weddings, and funerals, as well as pastoral care for those who are homebound or hospitalized. I will be building community and encouraging our congregation in missions and outreach.
In addition, as Transitional Pastor I will also be leading us as we all work together to discern a renewed, shared understanding God’s leading and calling upon the Fries congregation in its mission and ministry in a hurting world. We will be listening to one another and learning from one another frequently in this time of transition. We will be building on the strengths of the past. We will be calling forth the best in one another. We will pray often – expressing gratitude, confessing sin and trusting in God’s transforming forgiveness. We be doing these things as a way of being attentive to God’s living Spirit in our midst and preparing faithfully for the next long-term pastor. My wife, Ann Dixon Coppage, and I are eager to be a part of the Fries family and to be starting the new church year together.
Advent, Ann and I are coming your way soon.
Rev. Jeff Coppage
Currently serving as pastor of Covenant Moravian Church, York Pa.