Elementary Ministry Update

Dear Parents and Children,

Greetings in the name of our Lord Jesus!  Below you will read an important update from Amber Bryant, the Director of Elementary Ministries.  After you read her words, please continue reading for an update from me.

Amy Carlan

Amber's Note

Dear First Pres family,

It is with a mix of emotions that I share with you my decision to resign as Director of Elementary Children’s Ministry. This fall, I will be answering God’s call to return to classroom teaching in the English Department at Reagan High School. I am excited to return to the place where I began my teaching career and look forward to finding out how the Lord will use me in this role.

To the children of First Pres, I love you! It has been so much fun to spend time with you learning together about our amazing God, His word, and the deep, deep love of Jesus. I will have so many fun memories of you to look back on—the amazing thoughts you’ve shared in your Sunday school classes, the sweet prayers you’ve offered for each other, our Egyptian food fest at Kid Connection, Moontreat at Montreat, the postcards we sent back and forth to one another, the Down by the Creek Bank musical, and of course, VBS! You have probably taught me as much or more as I have taught you, and I am thankful to you for making my job so much fun.

Thank you to the parents and volunteers who have been so supportive, gracious, and willing to help with all the pieces and parts of children’s ministry. It takes many hands to keep our children’s ministry program running, and I can’t say enough how appreciative I am of you all. The relationships we’ve built mean so very much to me, and your stories of how your children have taken what they’ve learned here at church out into their neighborhoods, schools, teams, and beyond have been such blessings. Thank you for sharing them with me!

My family and I will continue to be active covenant partners at First Pres. I am grateful to be able to continue serving the children of our church in a volunteer capacity. During the period of transition, I know you will all join me in praying for the person whom God will call to follow me into the director position.

In the days leading up to my decision, I came across these words from Roy Lessin. I share them with you as a reminder that God’s timing is perfect, and He is the one who orders our steps:

“If God leads you into something new, do not fear giving yourself to it wholeheartedly. When it is time to move on, He will let you know. In the meantime, be faithful and finish the task with joy. He is the author of new beginnings in our lives…the sustainer and maintainer of all we do…and the one who is able to bring all things to their proper conclusion.”

I wish you all God’s blessings and appreciate your prayers as I follow the Lord’s leading into “something new.”

In Him,
Mrs. Amber

Update from Amy

I suspect you might feel the same as I did when I heard that Amber will be leaving staff to return to her vocation of teaching in the public school. I was a mix of emotions: disappointed to lose her as our capable and creative Elementary director, thrilled that she will be a light for Jesus as a high school teacher, grateful for her years on staff, and delighted that she and her family will continue as covenant partners deeply involved in the life of our church.

Amber has done a tremendous job the past three years as the caretaker for Elementary students and their families, including her creative efforts to help kids engage in discipleship during the pandemic. I hope you will join me in saying thank you to Amber. We will acknowledge her in the worship service on Sunday, August 15. We are also encouraging children and families to flood her with thank you notes and memories in the next four weeks.

As Amber transitions, we eagerly expect that the Lord has good plans for Elementary ministry. Currently, we are working on reviewing the job description, putting together a search team, and then starting the work of prayerfully discerning who the Lord has in store as our next Director. In the meantime, we plan to find an interim person to lead the charge in coordinating Elementary programming starting August 16 while the search committee does it work.
If you have any questions about Amber’s transition, the process going forward, or Discipleship in general, please do not hesitate to contact me. It is a joy to serve Jesus alongside of you all, as partners in sharing Jesus with all God’s children.

Grace and love of Jesus to you,

Email Amy Carlan
Direct Line: 336-930-1004