Worship assistants are always needed, but especially during the summer months. Summer is a great time to try out and learn about how to be an usher, greeter, assisting minister, lay reader, communion assistant, acolyte, crucifer or member of the altar guild. If you are willing to serve (we’ll train you on the spot), please email our the church office to get connected to our volunteer worship assistant coordinator.
Our 2019 Mission Team will be on the ground in the Dominican Republic June 15-21. Together, we will hold in our prayers the eleven travelers who are going to serve on behalf of us all.
The picture is of the church building being built by Luz Divina. Three summers ago, our Mission Team worked on the foundation of the building. Next week they will work to continue raising the structure.
As hopefully you have heard by now, we are getting ready for Vacation Bible School (VBS) at Abiding Presence. VBS is a week of fun, faith, friends and learning about God’s love. Recently, however, concerns have been raised with Group Publishing’s Roar VBS curriculum, especially in regards to racial and cultural insensitivities. Sara Dyson, our Children and Family Minister, our VBS Director and I have spent the past few weeks wrestling with these matters and discerning how to move forward.
While the publisher has recently released revisions to the curriculum, we still do not feel comfortable using it. Therefore, we have made the decision to switch to a different VBS curriculum. One of our core values at Abiding Presence is “All are Welcome,” which helps us to create an environment where we can share the message that God loves each and every one of us. We believe that the new VBS curriculum we have chosen, To Mars and Beyond, will encompass our core value beautifully.
For those of you who have already signed up to participate or volunteer, there are no changes that you need to make at this time. We’re looking forward to a great week when we launch VBS on July 8.
I want to make sure that the congregation is aware of our position on the curriculum and the switch that we have made. As always, we seek to be a faith community that creates a positive and loving environment for everyone. Being this kind of welcoming community takes intentional work.
One of the quotes on my office wall attributed to Martin Luther says, “We are not yet what we shall be, but we are growing toward it...” Together, may we keep growing toward what God is calling us to do and be as the people of God at Abiding Presence.
If you have any questions or want to talk further about VBS curriculum, please don’t hesitate to let me know.
As we get ready for VBS this summer, we want to reach out to you about concerns have recently been raised with Group Publishing’s Roar VBS curriculum, especially in regards to racial and cultural in-sensitivities. Our VBS team has spent the past few weeks wrestling with these matters and discerning how to move forward. While the publisher has recently released revisions to the curriculum, we still do not feel comfortable using it.
We have, therefore, made the decision to switch to a different VBS curriculum. One of our core values at Abiding Presence is “All are Welcome,” which helps us create an environment where we can share the message that God loves each and every one of us. We believe that the new VBS curriculum we have chosen, To Mars and Beyond, will encompass our core value beautifully.
For those of you who are already signed up for VBS, there are no changes that you need to make. At this time, we simply wanted to make you aware of our position on the matter and the switch that we have made. We hope this creates a positive and loving environment for everyone. If you have any questions in this matter, please do not hesitate to reach out to one of us.
We're worshiping outside on Sunday, June 2 for our annual Outdoor Worship Service and Picnic. There will only be one Sunday morning service at 10:15 a.m. (Saturday worship will happen as usual at 6:00 p.m.) Grab a lawn chair or use one of the many folding chairs we'll have set up. After a 45 minute worship service with Holy Communion, we'll have a picnic. There will be a moonbounce by the playground for the kids. The church will provide hamburgers, hot dogs and drinks. Each family is asked to bring a side dish or dessert to share. We welcome all from the community to join us! It's a great service to invite a friend or neighbor to come along. Volunteers are needed to help with set up beginning at 9:00 a.m.
Happy Summer! As we head into summer, let me share with you a story, an update and a new opportunity.
First, the story...Ben, my husband, and I were sitting around the other night when he said to me, “Did you see that someone on the Living In Burke Facebook page is looking for a church?” Ben knows that I regular watch pages like this for people who are looking for churches. It is a great way to get the word out about Abiding Presence and invite the community to come check us out. Before I could even open the app on my phone, though, Ben followed up, “Oh, never mind! Your people already covered it.” Sure enough, there were multiple posts from all of you sharing your experiences at Abiding Presence and inviting this person to come join us.
In this season of moves and transitions, there will be many people looking for a church. They could be your friends, new neighbors, new coworkers or random people you don’t know on social media. I encourage you to be talking about Abiding Presence and inviting people to come see what we are all about. Why? It’s not just because we have something special happening in our faith family (although, I think we do!). Even more importantly, it is because others are searching. They are actively seeking a place to connect, to grow in faith and to hear the good news of God’s love for all people. When we offer an invitation we are helping them to find that community for which they are searching.
Second, the update...as you have hopefully heard by now we have two open positions for which we are hiring - a Children & Family Minister and a Youth & Family Minister. I have been actively working my contacts, learning how to us LinkedIn (come connect with me there!) and talking to various people in the children and youth ministry world. Thanks to all of you who have helped to spread the word about the positions. I’ve had initial phone conversations with nine people, most of whom will now be moving on to first round video conference interviews with our interview teams. The hope is to have the positions hired in the next six weeks and for people to begin in the positions on September 1. Please be actively praying for the people who God is preparing to join our ministry team.
Finally, a new opportunity. This fall we will launch our fifth year of MOPS, our midweek ministry to moms and children ages birth through kindergarten. New this year, we will be adding a Moms Next group, geared toward moms of 1st grade and older kids and teens. This will allow us to expand the ministry to all moms in our congregation and community. If you are interested in participating in MOPS or Moms Next, there is more information and registration on our website.
Last, but certainly not least, thank you! Thank you for all the ways you support ministry at Abiding Presence. You are the church! What we are able to do as a faith family is only possible because of your involvement. I am grateful for the privilege of being your pastor!
Registration is now open for our 2019-2020 year of MOPS and, new this year, Moms Next. Learn more about these two ministries to support moms of kids ages birth through kindergarten (MOPS) and elementary through high school (Moms Next). You can now submit your registration online.
Children ages 3 (and potty trained) through rising 5th grade are invited to join us for a week of fun and faith at Vacation Bible School. New this year! There are two sessions - morning or afternoon - from which you can choose. Registration is open! Read our recent statement on our switching of VBS curriculum for this summer.