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Greater Huntsville Pastors Prayer Summit (GHPPS) - Letter from Paul Lawler

Greater Huntsville Pastors Prayer Summit


March 8, 2007

Dear Fellow Pastor or Christian Leader:

I wish each of you the grace and peace of Jesus Christ our Lord.

Over the past 16 years Missy and I have had the privilege of serving Jesus Christ as I have served as a pastor of a local church in this city. I have also had the privilege of serving as the Torchbearer of the Greater Huntsville Pastors’ Prayer Summit movement for 8 years, as well as serving as the Executive Director of Mission Huntsville for 2 years.

These years have been filled with great moments of joy that go beyond words. We have watched God birth a prayer movement in our city encompassing great diversity. We have seen trust develop between the broader Body of Christ. We’ve watched walls come down for God’s glory. We’ve been a part of planting a church in a dynamic and growing city. We hope and pray that the water level of God’s presence and grace has somehow increased through these servant-efforts for God’s glory.

Over the course of the last year I have sensed that God has been preparing me to take another assignment in His Kingdom. Missy and I have had countless discussions and prayer times centered in seeking the Lord in regard to what He may be saying. We have sensed the mantles of Senior Pastor, Torchbearer, and Executive Director for Mission Huntsville upon my life may be loosening, but we were not sure as to what it might mean.

Last month I received phone calls from parties wanting to know if I would be interested in serving as the Senior Pastor of Christ Church in Birmingham, Alabama. As Missy and I began to pray about the matter, it became very clear that God was speaking. We were very surprised by His splash of peace and leading that began to emerge in our minds, hearts, and spirits in regard to moving to Birmingham. After much prayer we have decided to follow what we believe to be God’s call to Christ’s Church. On June 13th of this year, I will become the Senior Pastor of Christ Church in Birmingham.

In light of the transition ahead of us, I am laying the mantles down as Torchbearer for the Greater Huntsville Pastors’ Prayer Summit, Executive Director of Mission Huntsville, and as the Pastor of Chase Valley Church. I am so thankful for the experiences we have had together in this great city through the years.

I want each of you to know that all of this is bitter-sweet to us. We have formed some of our richest relationships with the people of Huntsville. While we embrace the call of God with great joy and anticipation, there have also been many tears that have been shed. Please know that while we rest in God’s call, this matter is also very tender for us.

With much love for each of you, and much anticipation of the fulfillment of His future for this great city . . .

To Him be glory,

Paul Lawler
Senior Pastor, Chase Valley United Methodist Church
Proverbs 3:5-6