St. Paul's Lutheran Church, San Diego, CA
St. Paul's Lutheran Church of San Diego has celebrated 17 baptisms in the 17 weeks between Reformation and Transfiguration. God has done extraordinary things in the lives of those worshipping online, as well as those onsite.
Tyler and Gillian live in Washington, but worship online with St. Paul's as they prepare for a move to San Diego. When their son was born last year, they flew to San Diego for baptism in November. St. Paul's is their church family, even as they find themselves navigating work and family between two states.
Pacific Beach is a transitional community within San Diego, populated by college-age students, young professionals, and military families constantly on the move. The church completed a technology upgrade (i.e. new cameras, projectors, speakers, laptops, software, as well as a dedicated fiber optic line), just before the pandemic began. It was entirely providential, as God enabled worshippers from 15 different states to connect with services. Pastor Jim Henkell recognizes
"this tremendous witness opportunity for those whose family and friends may have been hesitant to discuss Jesus, much less worship together. Extended families continue to worship and discuss the messages across the miles, even as the pandemic eases."
Jason is the father of one of St. Paul's fourth graders who was baptized earlier this school year. The Holy Spirit worked through that event to impact this father with the Gospel. Jason attended St. Paul's basics of the Bible course and was baptized in February. His teenage son has also been reading the Bible and asking questions as the Spirit continues to work on his heart. Along with other Lutheran schools around the District, St. Paul's was blessed to experience a boost in enrollment, growing nearly 60% over the past two years.
"The opportunity to develop relationships and share God's love with so many families has been wonderful,"
says Principal Meredith Binnie.
St. Paul's mission is "Witnessing Christ in the Community," an emphasis not only on sharing Jesus with others but watching the extraordinary things He does. Karen Allsing, a long-time member and former teacher, comments:
"It's another example of how God uses undesirable things like COVID to provide unexpected blessings."
Join us in Prayer
Gracious Heavenly Father, we give thanks for the 17 brothers and sisters that have been added to the family of Christ through the waters of Baptism. We ask that you continue to pour out your blessings on the ministries of St. Paul's Lutheran Church. Amen.
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