This message, written by Marc de Jeu, was first shared with the SOMA community on January 23, 2019.
Friends & members of SOMA,
I’m sharing some big news with you today. After more than nine years of planting and pastoring our community of faith, I intend to transition out of my role as SOMA’s pastor this summer. Following mutual interest and conversation, on January 7th the Elders of FPC Beaver, SOMA’s planting congregation & where I’ve also been pastoring part time since 2009, voted to bring me on full time as their Associate Pastor of Mission. The official call is pending a vote of FPC membership in late February.
This is very, very bitter-sweet for me, and I’m sure for many of you as well. I’m anticipating the new opportunities for me to learn and grow and to be helpful at FPC, particularly with their desire to develop in community outreach, church planting, & racial reconciliation. I’m eager for SOMA’s worshiping body to experience even deeper trust in Jesus’s Lordship & worship/community/mission with each other in a new season. And I’m excited for Beaver Falls to have a new pastor brought into the community with a heart to be a blessing to our city with you all.
I’m also feeling the weight of this change. This church existed in my heart long before anyone else was part of it, and I could never have imagined what a beautiful, scrappy, diverse, genuine, mission-minded, and grace-filled community we would become. SOMA is my dream church. I love you as my sisters and brothers, and I love the dreaming and doing I’ve been blessed to do with you this past decade. Thank you for gracing me with the gift of living the fruit of all that work in a growing, healthy body of faith that’s trying to live out God’s Kingdom in Beaver Falls. My family will continue to make Beaver Falls our home, and I hope to transition into a healthy connection with SOMA even as new leadership steps in – but it will be different.
Change can be good and hard at the same time, and that’s what I’m feeling today. I’m choosing to adopt that posture of gratefulness to God for all of it, and I pray that same posture for all of us.
I will be sharing more about this change at our worship gathering this Sunday the 27th, and our Session/Leadership Team has composed the document below in an effort to anticipate some of the questions you may have. I encourage you to spend time reading it, as it explains some of my thoughts behind pursing this change. I also invite you to reach out to me – I’d love to share more with you more about my discernment and hear your thoughts and feelings as well.
Grateful & prayerful,