In our new series, Pastoring in Pandemic, we’ll be highlighting successes and struggles, sharing creative ideas, and discussing the harsh realities pastors face when church can’t physically meet. We’ve asked our Moses Cohort pastors to talk about how they’re innovating to reach their congregation and beyond.
Ministry is not a solo endeavor, but with the new reality of Covid 19, meeting the needs of the community and staying connected can be more difficult. For Moses Cohort Pastor Hannah Bergstrom de Leon, she’s blessed to serve a community that’s generous. Before Minnesota issued the shelter at home order, her congregation, with help from Thrivent action dollars, delivered food assistance and care packages to provide for others with needs.
Relationships are an integral part of the life of a pastor. Bergstrom de Leon is thankful her congregation watches out for her and makes sure she’s not doing too much. There’s a strong level of trust from her congregation, she explains, for which she’s thankful.
But, even with the congregation’s generosity, Pastor Bergstrom de Leon misses her ministry partners: the kids who help lead worship, the accompanist, the readers. “I don’t have anyone to talk to,” Bergstrom de Leon laments. “I miss hearing the stories, the check ins, the kids, and it’s so hard to keep track of what’s going on in people’s lives when we can’t physically see each other.”
For Bergstrom de Leon, in a crisis, you can’t hide the truth of who you are. She advises, “Let the congregation be vulnerable. In moments of anxiety we over function.” Instead, she says, “there’s this beautiful moment where people have to fight for the church. Rather than pushing them, it’s an opportunity for the congregation to step up and take the lead.” It seems as though her congregation is doing just that.