M.E. Steelman • DIrector of Church Life and Connection

Thank you, Derry Presbyterian Church. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to learn and grow as a faith leader over the last five and a half years.  Thank you for your unending support and encouragement. Thank you for helping our children’s ministry programs grow by volunteering in our classrooms, surrounding us with your thoughts and prayers, joining us for special events, and sharing your gift of time, talents or financial contributions to our various programs. Thank you for joining with the Derry family for our whole church events like the Church Picnic and Corn Roast. Thank you for helping our Prime Timers program on Monday afternoons become a wonderful fellowship opportunity for the adults of the church.  Thank you for allowing me the opportunity to lead and serve you. 

This Thanksgiving season I find myself extra full of gratitude.  As I prepare to transition from my role as a church staff member to a congregation member, I feel incredibly thankful that I do not have to step away from this wonderful church family. While I will need to remove myself from our children’s ministry programs to allow Shawn Gray the opportunity to grow into his role at Derry, I am thankful that I can still be active in so many other ways.  

I am thankful to have Shawn joining us on December 1 so that we can share a month working together.  What a blessing for Derry Church to have this overlap time. I look forward to showing Shawn all the gifts that Derry Church offers to our church family, and the community, through our programming, education, care, time and talents.  

The next few months will be different for us all. However, if we focus on the many church blessings we have and allow that to guide our hearts, this time of transition will be more joyful. As I was preparing for many Thanksgiving lessons between Sunday School, KIWI, fellowship, my preschool classroom and Prime Timers, I came across the following quote from Maya Angelou and it has stuck with me…

“Be present in all things and thankful for all things.” 

I hope during this time of transition at the church, and during the Thanksgiving season, that you will find a way to stay present and thankful. My prayers consistently include prayers of thanksgiving for the unending helping hands we seem to have for one another, the level of stewardship for our beautiful and vibrant church building, the warmth and joyfulness you feel as you enter our church for worship, the thoughts and preparations made for each program and event held at the church, and the genuine care, help and thoughtfulness shared by everyone. Being present and thankful is much easier when you are with this church family.

As we approach my last month working at the church, I want you all to know how thankful I am for the last five and half years. What a blessing this chapter has been in my life. I look forward to this next chapter together as I continue to worship, grow in my faith and share my gifts alongside each of you.

I hope you have a wonderful and blessed Thanksgiving!

With love and gratitude, 

🙂 M.E.