On Sunday morning, November 5th, the Spring Mount Mennonite Church (SMMC) building was empty. Signs on the doors invited everyone to a special worship service at the Lower Frederick Firehouse to celebrate the ordination of Don McDonough.
An ordination in a firehouse? Strange, but fitting. This community building has been the venue for other congregational activities: Vacation Bible School programs and Open Windows Nursery School Spaghetti Suppers. It seemed appropriate that Don, who has been serving as Associate Pastor, with a special gift of outreach to the community, be ordained there.
Donâ€™s friend and mentor, Kirk Hanger, pastor of Franconia Conference Partner In Mission congregation New Hope Fellowship in Alexandria, Virginia, preached the sermon, â€œThe Churchâ€™s Coach.â€ He emphasized that pastors are coaches and the church is the team, not spectators. Based on scriptures from Acts, Hanger gave examples of the various coaching techniques that Barnabas used. He equipped Paul to work with the Gentiles, empowered Paul and others by opening doors and instilling self-confidence, and embraced John Mark even though he was a â€œtough case.â€
The 150 people in attendance, including the McDonough extended family and friends, praised God through various styles of music and enjoyed a meal together following the service. All offered support and blessing to Don, as he continues to serve as SMMC Associate Pastor complementing the ministry of Pastor Michael A. King as these coaches along with the entire team minister to the Spring Mount congregation and its surrounding community.