|Pastor Marshall to leave Zoar|
|Written by Sentinel-Tribune Staff|
|Thursday, 03 July 2014 09:13|
PERRYSBURG - Zoar Lutheran Church will celebrate the ministry of Pastor Ann Marshall at all services the weekend of July 12 -13 as she prepares for new duties Aug. 1 in Norwalk. Marshall began serving at Zoar as its community pastor in August of 2007, and has now accepted a call to serve at St. Peter Lutheran Church in Norwalk,. In a letter addressed to Zoar members, she stated, "My time at Zoar has been outstanding. I have been challenged and affirmed, amazed and uplifted, fulfilled and often overwhelmed by [the church's] generosity, kindness and commitment. I have been blessed to work alongside so many faithful people these years, both volunteers and staff… I have loved my seven years as Zoar's community pastor."
Marshall's ministry at Zoar focused special attention on the church's role in society, the care of poor, and the care and protection of the earth.
"This is why I came to Zoar," she stated. "As the community pastor, I could concentrate more energy out outreach and justice ministries."
During her seven-year tenure at Zoar, she was instrumental in establishing several community and global outreach projects including Kids Against Hunger, Cherish All Children (a ministry to protect children from sexual abuse), Lighthouse Keepers (a support group for those who have loved ones with mental illness), Solomon's Porch (a community discussion forum), and helping members to invest in KIVA, a micro-loan program. She also provided leadership and support for other Zoar outreach ministries such as Kitchen of Hope, Feed Our Families, and Family Promise. She had primary responsible for the creation of Zoar's new logo, website, and social media sites. She established a community documentary film series, offering public screenings on trending subjects, such as global warming, food production, poverty, and human trafficking.
Of the many committees she staffed, one of particular interest is "Yarns Of Love" - a group of women who meet weekly to knit and crochet prayer shawls, lapghans, chemo caps, and blankets. Upon completion, these items are blessed, tagged and sent to someone in need. Many of the group's creations have been donated to local organizations including Heartland of Perrysburg, Abundant Life Senior Apartments, the American Cancer Society, the VA Hospital in Ann Arbor, and Hospice of Northwest Ohio.
Rev. Tim Philabaum, senior pastor at Zoar, said Marshall has been instrumental in building the church into what it is today. "Many of the projects over which she presides will continue to prosper and develop - as members are deeply committed to them."
"Zoar has always been a welcoming congregation. When I first started, one of my goals as a pastor was to continue to build on that," Marshall said. "People here care about worship and care about each other. Those two things were very important to me - and that people would continue to grow spiritually."
Marshall also noted that she was proud of the church's music ministry. An active member of the Senior Choir, she encourages new members to become involved in the various ministries of Zoar.
Marshall's last sermons will be July 12 at 6 p.m. and July 13 at 7:15, 8:30 and 11 a.m. A reception will be held in the Family Life Center on July 13 from 9:30 - 10:30am. Marshall's final message to the congregation will be that "God calls us all to grow in faithfulness and obedience and to produce a harvest of justice and joy in the name of the Sower of the Seed, Jesus Christ."
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