Rev. Keith Dove, pastoral resident

Dear FPC Family,

Grace and peace to you in the name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. As Paul wrote to the Philippians, I thank God every time I think of you. I am thankful for my time here as a Sid and Cathy Batts Pastoral Resident, but now that time has come to a close.

I am excited to let you know, though, that I will not be far away. In fact, I will still spend much of my time in the FPC building. Starting next week, I will be the new pastor at New Creation Community Church and Faith Presbyterian Church, here in Greensboro.

Quite frankly, my first years of professional ministry have been a wild time. While I have been with you for almost two years, we’ve spent less than eight months of that time together in person. We have journeyed through a pandemic together, imagining new ways to be the Church out of necessity and often on the fly. Most of my time was also marked by a pastoral transition, which is always a crazy liminal time for any congregation, but especially at places like FPC where there have only been 12 installed senior pastors over two centuries. It has been a wild ride, but I am so thankful that we were on it together.

I am excited to see how FPC’s next chapter will unfold, and I look forward to the ways that our paths will continue to cross as we minister together in this community. There has been a lot of change and uncertainty over the past few years, but as we can see the end of the pandemic on the horizon and have gotten settled in with Jill’s leadership, this next chapter is off to a promising start. FPC is boiling over with great potential, and I can’t wait to see where it takes you.

Thank you for opening your arms and your hearts to me over these two years. And thank you for your investment in the residency program and the formation of young pastors. I am grateful to have been part of this program and to have spent my first chapter of ordained ministry with such a caring and seasoned staff and such a loving congregation.

I pray that God will bless you and your ministry going forward as you strive to do justice, love mercy, and walk humbly with your God. When you ask “Lord, when was it that we saw you?” I pray that Christ will say, “I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me.” May the peace of Christ abide with you all, now and forever.

With gratitude,