Please join us in celebrating this exciting news of the next chapter in Diane's journey.
News from Our Seminary Student Diane Nokonechny
For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor rulers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8:38-39
Hello Bread of Life Family!
It seems like forever ago that we last saw each other face to face, and I thought now would be a good time to bring you up to date on how our journey is going.
Yes, I said, “our” because this crazy, beautiful, messy journey that is called seminary is one we are travelling together. Ok, so yes, I’ve been the one who’s had to do the reading of countless books, the writing of several papers and the many trips back and forth to Saskatoon, but all of you have been an integral part of my support system through your words, your financial gifts and your prayers. You sat through my sermons and provided invaluable feedback which helped me to grow as a preacher. You were willing to put yourselves out there and share your thoughts and questions as we wrestled with Scripture together and were often left with more questions than answers. Your words of encouragement always seem to come at just about the time self-doubt was running rampant in my mind and I was considering walking away (and believe me, there have been many times I’ve been in that place!)
And so, here we are, two years of seminary complete and now I’m about to begin a 16-month internship under the guidance of Pastor Dennis Lueck, serving four congregations: St. Martin Anglican Church in Raymore, Prince Of Peace Lutheran Church in Govan, St Paul Lutheran Church in Duval and Trinity Lutheran in Quinton. Our journey continues on.
As I head out to begin this new chapter, I want to say Thank you. Thank you for welcoming me into the Bread of Life community. Thank you for helping to create a space where someone like me, whose frame is bent and broken, whose mind fears the unspoken…. Who walked away from God, who was convinced that God was done with me….who first experienced the unconditional love of a Power Greater than myself in the basements of churches at 12 step meetings, but never could have imagined I could experience that in the sanctuary of the Church… who came to worship week after week with all of my fears and doubts and anger towards God…Bread of Life was a place where someone like me could come and hear the Good News, even if for the longest time I didn’t believe that it was actually meant for me.
So much has changed over these past four years.
Today, I am convinced that there is nothing that can ever separate me and you from the love of God. Today I am convinced that there is nothing we can do or not do, say or not say that will make God go back on the promise God made to us through the life, death and resurrection of Christ – Death has been defeated and we are forgiven!
Today, my heart is overflowing with gratitude for I am convinced that God worked through all of you at Bread of Life to help me come to know that I am in fact, loved by God, just as I am… a flawed and sinful human being and a redeemed child of God.
As I move into this next phase of my seminary education, I have to say that while I am excited, I am also somewhat terrified! But I am reminded that I am not doing this alone. I have all of you and so many other supporting me and we have a God who says, “I love you. I’m right here with you, and I’m not going anywhere!”
And thanks be to God for that!
Peace is yours.