From Our Pastor

Pastor Tim Funk

Pastor Tim Funk is a second-generation minister. His father, Amos M. Funk served United Brethren, Evangelical United Brethren and United Methodist Churches for over 60 years. Born and raised in the Chambersburg area Tim accepted Christ at a revival service at his home church, St. John’s UM Church, when he was 10 years old. At 13 years of age he received the call to the pastoral ministry but only became serious about the matter in his early twenties. It was then that he decided to attended Messiah College and Wesley Theological Seminary to prepare for the future God laid out for him. Tim met his wife, Sharon in his last year of college and they married in June of 1984. As a team the two have served 4 other parishes before coming to St. Paul’s in Red Lion. From 1985 – 1988, while in seminary, Tim was assistant pastor at Potomac UM Church, Potomac, MD. From 1988 – 1994 he served The Catawissa Circuit, a three point charge, consisting of Bethel, Fisherdale and St. Paul’s U.M. Churches. It was during this pastorate that their two incredible children, Rebekkah and Jesse were born. His next appointment from 1994-1998 was only 4 miles from Red Lion at Bethany UM Church in Felton. Tim’s longest pastorate was with the people of Waggoners UMC in Carlisle from 1998 – 2014. When he is not ministering, Tim enjoys all kinds of sports, fishing, auto racing and walking the Gettysburg Battlefield.

Pastor’s Post

Dear St. Paul’s Members,

The season of Lent begins on Wednesday, February 26 with Ash Wednesday. Here at St. Paul’s we offer a special Ash Wednesday service that ends with the imposition of ashes on our foreheads.

Why ashes? Since Old Testament times, ashes have been used as a symbol of our own certain death. When ashes are placed on our foreheads we hear the words: “Remember that you are dust and to dust you shall return.” It reminds us that we and our world are passing away and we need to give more thought to what lies at the end, eternal life.

Ashes are also a sign of our need to admit to ourselves that we are sinners. We cannot live up to the holiness of God and the standard of right and wrong our Lord has written on our conscience and in The Ten Commandments. Of course, many in the world see the concept of sin as old-fashioned. Yet the Scriptures are clear; sin is part of our human nature.

If we intentionally do wrong, whether we are Christian or not, our conscience deep inside tells us we have done wrong and we need to ask for forgiveness. Even more, whether we say it out loud or just think it to ourselves, we usually resolve not to do that again. Unfortunately, we often end up committing the same sin all over again. However, there are times when we do indeed leave that sin behind. That is real repentance and that is the heart of Lent.

The word “Lent” comes from an old English word for springtime. Think of it as a form of spring cleaning for the soul. In the early years of the Church it was confined to a few days before Easter. But by the fourth century it was extended to forty days before Easter, a period associated with the forty days and nights that Jesus spent in the desert just after his baptism.

century it was extended to forty days before Easter, a period associated with the forty days and nights that Jesus spent in the desert just after his baptism.

“Forty days before Easter” may be somewhat misleading. The Church doesn’t count Sundays among the forty days, so the period of Lent, lasting from Ash Wednesday through Holy Saturday, actually covers 46 days.

Whether 40 days or 46 days, in the great scope of things Lent is a momentary pause to rethink the fundamental purpose of our lives. But it can also be the occasion of an incredible repentance, the first step on the path of becoming the person we were always meant to be in Christ.

Peace,

Pastor Tim