Mimi and Tim Stanton joined Elmhurst CRC in 2010 with their three children. Mimi served on the Senior Leadership Team (SLT) for six years and joined the Elmhurst CRC staff last year as our Executive Director. After a year in this post, she was ready and willing to share some perspective in this week’s blog. I posed the following three questions to her:
Pastor Gregg: First question, how has church changed for you in the last year since joining the staff? Any major themes or reflections that you can share?
Mimi: Well, if you ask my family that question, I think they would say that they continue to be astonished at my newly-acquired knowledge of HVAC systems. Sometimes they accuse me of making up information about VAV boxes and CO2 levels because they don’t know enough to correct me.
In this past year, I would say I have a much deeper appreciation for the varied talents and skills needed to create a Spirit-filled worship experience every week. Observing the intentionality that goes into each service has been inspiring.
What has been especially lovely is the support from many of our members who have regularly asked me how they can pray for me and also frequently offered encouragement.
Also, it’s awesome to have prayer and Scripture study be a regular part of your work week. It has been great.
Pastor Gregg: Second, we’re a lot closer to being back to “normal” in terms of Sunday morning worship and Monday-Friday ministries. This is all new to you in a way! What things seem especially good these days?
Mimi: It IS so new to me from this vantage point! For sure, the first signs of life were the squeals and laughter of happy Little Lambs children. It’s hard to suppress a smile when you hear that.
We were stuck in limbo for so long -- it feels good to begin dreaming again about the opportunities to grow our ministries and find new ways to reach our communities.
Pastor Gregg: Finally, you know more about COVID protocols than anyone I know. When are the restrictions going to be relaxed? Can you please give a precise forecast for what lies ahead?
Mimi: Ha! If only that were possible! I have spent more time than I ever imagined reading/thinking/planning for COVID. And as much as our congregation disliked registering to attend services this past year, I promise you, the staff disliked it way more.
Members sometimes ask me how we determine COVID protocols. I’m so thankful I’m not responsible for determining this all on my own. We have a Regather Committee comprised of members with medical backgrounds, corporate professionals who share their workplace protocols, lawyers who offer guidance on what we propose, Senior Leadership Team members, and staff.
COVID has tested our community’s patience, for sure, but I am confident that what binds us together is far stronger.
~ Pastor Gregg