Archived Items
Use the links below to access archived copies of Sermons, Bulletins, and The Flame       (our monthly newsletter)
Prior Blogs by Pastor Leigh Ann

Building Committee Update Feb 2019

Building Committee Update Feb 2019
 

Building Committee Update:

On February 12, representatives of our Building Committee met with the South District Committee on Building and Location.  We shared our congregational work to date, our Ministry Action plan and need for additional space, our review of the community, our preliminary building plans with a preliminary budget estimate, our charge conference overwhelming approval of the plans to date and action empowering the creation of construction documents.  We received approval and supportive encouragement to move forward from the District Committee. That means, we have approval to create the construction documents, get bids from any contractors for the work and finalize a budget plan. Congratulations to us for getting this far!!!

In the next weeks and months we will be setting a calendar to get input from the congregation on various areas of building.  To clarify, there will be a gathering to receive input on the kitchen, the music area, the hospitality areas, the discipleship classrooms and the large gathering space for events.  Along the way, we will also want to hear your ideas about funding the building project. Ideas thus far include running a capital campaign for the congregation to pay for all or part of the project, utilizing funds from our foundation to pay all or part of the project, selling bonds and/or taking out a loan.  We have a lot of options and have heard many ideas and points of interest, and look forward to hearing more so that we can discern the desire of our congregation as we follow God’s call.

Our goal is to have the construction documents finished and a total budget with a recommendation based on congregational input to fund the building at the end of July or beginning of August.   Stand by for more information….

For any questions…  members of the Building Committee formed by Charge Conference action include: Rob Pierce, Tim Clarke, Suzanne McMurchie, Martha Phillips, Margo Rogers, Jacque Howard, Susan Kronoff, Mike Walker.  Ex-Officio members include: Rev. Dr. Leigh Ann Shaw, Billy Stempson and Rollin Grider.


Read more...

Getting Ready for Easter

Getting Ready for Easter
Pastor’s Ponderings – Feb 2019
 
The season of the Christian calendar which falls prior to our Easter Celebration is called “Lent.” Not “lint” like you find in your drier. This is different.
Every season of the year has a different quality or experience. Just like summer is usually warm and winter is usually cooler, our Christian seasons have a particular quality too.
Lent during 2019 formally begins with Ash Wednesday, which is March 6. The traditional Christian ritual associated with Ash Wednesday is receiving an ash smudge on your forehead. The ashes traditionally are the burnt palm branches used on Palm Sunday from the prior year.
Lent invites you to review your life. It’s a time to assess the ways you are feeling connected to God and your neighbors and discern what you like and what you’d like to change. Traditionally Christians have given something up for Lent, and “fasted” from something which distracted them from their spiritual life.
Contemporary Christians have new opportunities to experience the rituals leading us to Easter. Some Christians fast from one meal a day and give the money they save to a food bank or shelter or their church. Some Christians take on a new spiritual discipline for this season. A friend of mine prayed her way through the Psalms one year. Another friend began a yoga class to get more physically fit and honor the needs of her body.
This year I will be preaching a sermon series on spiritual activities that help us connect with God. These spiritual rituals will include: cleaning out and decluttering, listening to silence, giving gifts to others, creative activities like writing and travel. Done with focus and intent, we can find a new and restored relationship with God during Lent. No need to auto-pilot giving something up, maybe think of new ways to connect this year.
Lent concludes on the Saturday before Easter Sunday. Holy Week is the week just prior to Easter. During that week Christians worldwide remember Jesus’ final days on earth. We remember his gift of love and life that he offered humanity. We remember the pain of his life which ended violently and with great hatred. And we remember that God does not allow pain and hate to be the final word of any story.
Easter morning is a celebration of Jesus resurrection. This is the most sacred and holy of all Christian holidays. The meaning of being Christian is bound in the joy that God overcomes tragedy with healing life. The resurrection of Jesus is a mystery which we can never fully understand. What we can trust is that God accompanies humanity through every dark place we go.
Looking forward to Lent 2019…
Rev. Dr. Leigh Ann Shaw

Read more...