One Service Summer starting June 9th - 10am Service

2022 Year End Letter

Dear Friends,

Many are the plans in a person’s heart, but it is the Lord’s purpose that prevails. (Proverbs 19:21)

No one really knows how a journey will end as they take the first step. Life is full of unexpected roadblocks, detours, and hidden blessings—and this year has seen all three in abundance. Honestly, how many of your plans made it to the finish line this year? The end of the year is a good time to pull over and consider the road behind us as we prepare to navigate the road ahead.

2022 was full of change. Leadership transition is full of risk and never easy. Portico Church began the year with little more than the willingness to place hope in God’s mercy and provision. With God’s clear call, Christy and I moved to Charlottesville so I could join Portico’s leadership team. Leaving my position at Portico Church Arlington wasn’t expected or easy. That said, the unwavering faith of their young (but not green) team of leaders made our transition to Portico Charlottesville a hopeful one. Over the days, weeks, and months that followed, it became clear that God’s good hand was at work rebuilding Portico Church from the bottom up. God has blessed us with a new and blossoming team of leaders—new people—and a renewed sense of purpose and mission. Faith requires us to believe that pain has a purpose. The changes of 2022 brought that into full focus.

2022 was full of blessing. One of my prayers in the early days of 2022 was to see Portico Church gather once again as a happy family. It’s hard to define what that looks like but I can tell you what it sounds like—loud joy. Hearing the church body erupt into joyous conversation after the Benediction is evidence of the Holy Spirit at work and one of my favorite parts of Sunday. Here are a few key blessings of 2022 that point to the Holy Spirit’s work as well;

  • 15 baptisms
  • 40 new Members (5 added last week!)
  • 26 child dedications
  • 3 newly ordained pastors/elders
  • New Portico Kids Director (Courtney Dillard)
  • Thriving student ministry
  • Several new leaders preparing to be installed in early 2022 (Deacons, CG leaders…)
  • Portico Church Arlington (our first church plant) is doing very well. Pastor Nate Wagner has been called into the role of Lead Pastor and they are thriving under his leadership.

Being brilliant in the basics was our simple but lofty goal for 2022. The best thing about 2022 is you! Continue to be expectant and patient as we move into the new year. Join me in seeking God’s face in prayer (more on that in the coming days).

2023 is full of purpose. God has placed Portico Church here to bring the hope of His gospel to Charlottesville and beyond. We are a teaching hospital on the front lines of an eternal conflict seeking to bring healing and hope to a weary world. We are here to see the spiritual landscape of our region change; one person, one family, one neighborhood at a time. The local church is the hope of the world, not because of who we are but because of who we belong to—Immanuel—the God who moves in with us.

I’m not sure how many of your plans crashed and burned this year. Many of my friends feel like 2022 was a hard year—a year that lacked momentum. Even so, plans are different from purpose. Plans involve getting to a desired destination in life—purpose is about destiny. The beautiful thing about God’s providence is that it unites our plans (even the bad ones) to His purpose for us. And we know His purpose is to conform us to the image of His Son as He prepares us for an eternity of solid, unending joy (Romans 8:28-30). That’s a destiny worth giving up our plans for. That’s a destiny we all share in Christ Jesus our Lord. Amen!

Yours in Christ,

Jason Conner
Lead Pastor
Portico Church