Good day siblings in Christ,
Last week, I had the joy of teaching alongside our fantastic Sunday School teacher Jamie. We are preparing 2 youth who would like to receive their first communion next week. On Sunday, I showed them how to make pita bread and taught them about how to receive communion. It was so much fun. We will celebrate their first communion next week. The service will be inside as we will have a number of guests that day. A small coffee hour will follow
On Wednesday, June 29 from 11:00-12:30, we will be partnering at Temple Israel of Northern Westchester to create flower arrangements for those who are homebound. You will need a pickle jar or mason jar, a pair of scissors, a shoebox (if possible), and a willingness to help. If you can be there that Wednesday, please contact Yana Fomin (coordinator at Temple Israel) at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please identify yourself as a member of Our Saviour. I cannot be there that Wednesday, but I hope to be at future ones.
I will be on vacation the week of the June 27. I will be gone just during the week.
Thinking further in the future, on July 24 we will have a Christmas in July service. This year’s Christmas Eve had more Covid warnings which hovered over all of our services. On July 24, we are going to sing some Christmas songs and have a little fun.
Last Saturday, we gathered as a council in retreat. One of the major discussions we had was around how we do church in a hybrid world in the midst of our new reality. We assume Covid will not go away and streaming will continue. Some individuals and families will come on Sunday and some will not, but are still part of the community. We read two chapters in Canoeing the Mountains by Tod Bolsinger and his image was “We are off the map”, meaning we are having to transform without knowing which way is the right way to go.
I shared on Sunday, but wanted to share more widely, that one of our council members suggested that we change the definition of success and how we measure our church. While attendance and income are certainly ways to measure, the suggestion was to keep it more in line with our calling from God, as church. Here was the suggestion for a new way of looking at whether or not our church is successful: Are we touching people’s lives with the name of Jesus and a word of love?
Think of how that radically changes our outlook for the church. While attendance and giving are important, being church and disciples of Jesus means bringing hope into the world and telling of the salvation found in Jesus. That is the main thing as a church, so why not use that as our measuring stick? That means we are fulfilling our mission and proclaiming love into the world.
We continue to pray and trust in the Spirit.