Although the Rev. John L. Emig will be installed as the new pastor of Faith United Church of Christ Sunday, he is not new to central Pennsylvania.
He is chaplain at the Ebensburg Center where he has worked for eight years. He also pastored Christ United Church of Christ in Roaring Spring for 11 years and served congregations in Somerset, Duncannon and New Bloomfield.
Emig grew up in Norwalk, Conn., but he said, "I consider myself much more of a Pennsylvanian than I do a Connecticut Yankee. And yes, I am a Pirate and Steelers fan."
The installation service will be held at 3 p.m. Sunday at the church, 711 Seventh Ave. Regular worship is at 10:45 a.m. Sundays with Sunday school at 9:30 a.m.
The Mirror asked him the following questions about his work:
What are your sermons like?
The Emig file
Name: The Rev. John L. Emig
Family: Wife, Beverly; six children, three who live locally and three who live in San Antonio; six grandchildren from 5 months to 10 years old.
Hometown: Norwalk, Conn.
Education: Bachelor's Degree from Ursinus College, Collegeville, and Master of Divinity Degree from Lancaster Theological Seminary.
Number of years in ministry: 35
I am a lectionary preacher. I find this a very helpful discipline for myself and the congregation.
I love the flow of the church year and try to honor the different seasons from Advent through Pentecost. God does have wonderful things to communicate with us about life, and when we are dealing with the issues of life, this can be a very meaningful discipline and experience.
What is your favorite Scripture verse and why?
I have two. One is Romans 8:28 "All things work for good with those who love the Lord and are called according to his purpose."
This verse is one that reminds me of God's faithfulness and promise, and I believe that God does have wonderful plans in store for us, many of which we don't even know about.
The other is Psalm 3:5: "Trust in the Lord with all thy heart and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge God and God will direct thy path."
I have found this verse to be helpful to me personally and also to those to whom I minister in many ways. Faith is a matter of taking our best step forward and leaving the rest up to God, and this verse keeps me in that perspective.
What are your interests?
I love to read. As a matter of fact I get a little out of sorts with myself if I don't have at least a little time to read each day.
Beverly and I are ballroom dancers. We've been at it a number of years. We love the people with whom we enjoy this activity, and it is an experience in which there is always something new to learn.
What are your goals for the church?
We're trying to move forward in our ministry. We want to provide meaningful worship, serve the community, be with people in crisis or in trouble and encourage people in their faith.
In what ways will you reach out to the community?
We hope to develop a culture of inviting, as well as culture of welcoming. The message on the church answering machine says its all: "No matter who you are or where you are in life's journey, you are welcome here. Jesus didn't exclude anyone and neither do we."
We are a church that wants to get to know people no matter who they are.