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A Farewell… and a Welcome


"To everything there is a season, a
nd a time to every purpose unto heaven:
A time to weep, and a time to laugh;
a time to mourn and a time to dance..."
Ecclesiastes 3:1, 4


Dear Friends,

As chair of the Staff Parish Relations Committee, it is my pleasure to announce that Reverend Marissa Horvath will be joining us as our new pastor.  She and her husband Ted, along with their son Ethan, are coming to us from First United Methodist Church of Hammond.  She has served as pastor there for almost two years.  Rev. Horvath has also served at Methodist churches in Shreveport and Alexandria, as well as Rayne Memorial United Methodist Church in New Orleans.  She has even preached here at Gretna for Pastor Jo.

While our hearts are saddened to see Pastor Jo leave us, we have a chance to welcome Rev. Horvath, Ted and Ethan as we make them part of our church family.  Let us see past our tears and welcome them with “Gretna Grace.”

May the love of Christ that fills your hearts pour out in a true Christian welcome as we begin a new chapter in the life of Gretna United Methodist Church.

Nann Galloway, Chair
The GUMC Staff-Parish Committee

From the Staff-Parish Committee

From Pastor Jo Cooper

Dear Church Family,
When I arrived as your pastor on February 3, 2020, I did not know how I would be received. Would all that you were going through be too much for you to welcome a new pastor? Not to mention I had never been to a Rouses, and I didn’t know the difference between a sno-cone and a sno-ball. Well, you more than welcomed me. You have shared outings and sno-balls (there is no comparison!). You have celebrated and grieved with me, and you have blessed me with the honor of celebrating and grieving with you.
You have been more than resilient and gracious. You have been family. Through worshipping and ministering together we continued the healing process, and you continue to invite anyone who is weary to join you in the refreshment of God’s love, mercy, and grace.
Yesterday evening it was announced to our Staff Parish Relations Committee that I will be moving in July to pastor Henning Memorial United Methodist Church in Sulfur, Louisiana. And even though this appointment has taken us all by surprise, I choose to believe that God is at work.
I am confident that your new pastor will experience the same love and acceptance and will work diligently with you as GUMC becomes a stronger presence in our community. But, until then, we have work to do. There are hurting people who need a quiet place to rest. There are teenagers who need know there is a place to explore their faith and ask questions and families who need to know the chatter of their children are music to our souls. There are older adults who need to know they are valued. There are those who need to know the saving grace of Jesus.
Shortly after arriving I mentioned that I was not sent here to help you close a chapter, but to remind you that there is more to be written. I celebrate all God has done, is doing, and will do through the People called Gretna United Methodist Church.

The Journey Continues…
Pastor Jo

Welcome, Rev. Marissa Horvath

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