Rev. Steven E. Thomas, Pastor
Pastor Steven Thomas was born in Houston, Texas. He graduated from New Mexico Tech with a BS in Chemistry. He was working as a chemist in Baltimore for a few years, and then decided to pursue the dream of being a pastor. In 1993, Pastor Steve graduated from the Lutheran Theological Seminary in Gettysburg. He is married to Pastor LaDonna Thomas who serves at St. David Lutheran Church in Hanover, PA. They have one daughter, Rebekah.
Pastor Steve enjoys kayaking, reading, and motorcycling. Pastor Steve’s passion is always looking for greater understanding - especially in how our expanding scientific knowledge reveals additional wonders of God.
Some of his favorite books are The Bible (of course), Awareness by Anthony DeMello, The Shack by William P. Young, The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle, E=mc2 by David Bodanis, and the Tolkein trilogy.
Nawakwa Family Camp
The primary purpose of the Church is to develop faith in Jesus Christ - and then to nurture that faith. All of the activities that we do – from worship to Sunday School to practicing bells to writing newsletter articles to reading scripture to singing hymns – it is all intended to develop and nurture faith.
However, one of the best ways to form long-term faith is to have a significant faith experience outside of the congregation.
That may sound like a strange thing coming from a parish pastor, but it has proven to be true. Those faith experiences that happen outside of the congregation could be something as simple as going camping with your grandpa and having him tell you all of the many reasons that he believes in Jesus – and all of the many reasons and ways that he serves Jesus every day.
Other faith experiences outside of the congregation can be going to church camp or going to the Women of Faith events or attending a synod or national youth event. Each of these events has the potential to touch a person very deeply in ways that it is difficult to do in an everyday worship setting.
But once that deep faith is ignited, then the home church is well equipped to nurture and strengthen that faith. The home congregation is well equipped to give Christian education and to provide a larger context for that person’s faith. To surround them with faithful witnesses and guides.
But it is helpful to have that initial spark that a special spiritual experience can provide.
This summer, St. Bartholomew’s is sending any of our families with children in our congregation - we are sending them to Family Camp at Camp Nawakwa free of charge. This includes any grandparents who would like to bring their grandchildren from our congregation to family camp. Many of our families have already begun fundraisers that help support this ministry. And the April Special Offering is dedicated to helping support this wonderful ministry. So, if you have any interest in supporting the faith life of the children and young families at St. B’s, please consider giving to the April special offering.
It is hard to overestimate what an experience like Family Camp can give to a child. First off, they are in a safe environment with their parents or grandparents. They are surrounded by new experiences of the faith – everything from campfires – to hanging out, learning about Jesus with their friends – to doing crafts and worshipping and doing other fun things with lots of other Christian kids.
The children are surrounded by faith-filled young adults – counselors in their first years of college. They can form quite deep and important mentoring relationships with these faithful, intelligent young adults.
We are encouraging our young families or even the grandparents of our children – to take their children (or grandchildren) to Family Camp at Nawakwa (July 14-20).
If you are interested in taking advantage of this excellent faith opportunity, please fill out a registration form (in the hallway) and give it to either Pastor Steve or our office manager, Beth Croney.
May Jesus continue to bless St. Bartholomew’s with an abundant and growing faith among our children.
- Pastor Steve
Pastor Messages of Special Interest
Suicide - Surviving Life’s Darkest Moments
Video of Archived Sermons
Click here to View Video of Archived Sermons on You Tube
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