Dear Prince of Peace Members and Friends,

Happy Easter to you and yours! This past Easter we celebrated the life of Jesus in powerful ways, and the momentum continues this Easter season. I was reminded that no matter what changes come our way, each year we celebrate the life and work of Jesus. He is our constant every day of every year. “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever” (Hebrews 13:8).

I am writing to inform you of some important changes in our ministry of helping people to Know God through Worship. As you know, Michael Rossi, our music ministry director, has stepped down to focus on his family. We have a wonderful team of staff and lay leaders to get us through the next few months as we discern where the Lord is leading us in the long-term. Thanks for your continued prayers and support of all involved.

Additionally, last June our church adopted a new vision statement: Prince of Peace builds disciples of Jesus who Know God, Grow Together, and Serve the World. From engaging worship, to baptisms of all ages, to new believers growing in the Word and community, and to serving many people locally and globally, it is encouraging to see our vision coming alive in our midst. I am so grateful that we have a simple and clear path that will keep guiding us toward new growth and more people knowing God’s grace and mercy.

To further this work, the Weekend Worship and Education Ministry Action Team (WEMAT) was formed in the fall of 2023. They were tasked with reviewing how we can best align our weekend worship and education ministries with our vision statement and the Board of Servant Leader’s five critical targets that were established Spring of 2023 (especially #5). They are as follows:

1. As a team, the BoSL and lead staff will re-visit and reformulate the Prince of Peace vision statement that defines a discipleship pathway and bring it to the congregation for approval.

2. Implement the discipleship pathway as defined above, to include opportunities for lay people to live out the vision.

3. Maintain and enhance a high-quality, full-day option for students at the PoP preschool/kindergarten. Research the feasibility of extending the day to more hours, offering summer enrichment programs, and increasing enrollment in the future.

4. More fully assimilate the school ministry with Prince of Peace as a whole—financially, organizationally, and through continued communication and opportunities to connect with school families and staff.

5. Assess current weekend worship and Sunday School experiences and determine/implement the changes needed to steward current resources appropriately and to better serve new and continuing worship attenders.

With the help of the WEMAT’s prayer, reflection, and research, the Lead Staff and I have decided to combine the 5:30pm Saturday service and the 10:30am Sunday service. Supporting Prince of Peace’s mission and vision, we will offer two excellent types of worship on a Sunday morning – an 8:00 traditional service and a 10:30 contemporary service – to reach the people God is calling us to in our church and in our community.

Let me elaborate further on this decision: First, we want people to Know God through worship. By offering two types of worship services on Sunday morning, we position ourselves to reach a variety of people in a way that is relevant and understandable. Second, by offering two types of services adjacent to the Sunday School hour, we encourage everyone to participate in Grow Together opportunities. Finally, combining our services leverages our staff, lay, and financial resources for greater impact – to use our resources for reaching our community and for providing two excellent and meaningful worship services.

Our last Saturday night worship service will occur on June 1st, and we will implement the new schedule on June 9th. For many of you, this change will not come as a surprise since Prince of Peace has been prayerfully considering this decision for almost three years. If this does come as a surprise to you, please know that we did not come to this decision lightly. With the support and planning of the Weekend Worship and Education Ministry Action Team and many others who have explored this decision, we believe that offering two excellent types of worship services on a Sunday morning is the next step to living out our church’s mission and vision.

This is an exciting time for our church, and I look forward with anticipation to the opportunities associated with this change. That said, change is hard, and some of you will feel a sense of loss or trepidation. That is not only okay, but entirely natural and understandable. In the coming weeks, we will do our best to support you through the transition. If you would like to meet with one of us, please sign up for a time here.

We ask for your continued prayers for Prince of Peace as we seek to reach our community with the life-giving love of Jesus and live out our vision. Prince of Peace builds disciples of Jesus who Know God, Grow Together, and Serve the World.

In Christ,

Pastor Michael Hayes with the Lead Staff