Pastor Russ Norris
At the 2018 New England Synod Assembly our theme was “Stir It Up”. Congregations were challenged to experiment with new forms of worship, new kinds of outreach, and new ways of being “church” in today’s world.
Here at Joy in Christ, we have been “stirring it up” all summer long. Our new worship service has been well received, and we are planning to continue it into the fall.
And September will be filled with exciting new programs, beginning with our Rally Day cookout on the 9th. The following Saturday, September 15th, we will sponsor out first community outreach project – a workshop on spiritual care for those with Alzheimer’s and dementia. Then, on September 23rd you are invited to our Jazz Brunch with the Jeff Williams Quartet. Our friends from All Saints will be joining us every Wednesday from 1:00-2:30 p.m. for a month long study of the Book of Acts. It really looks to be a Super September. And we are already making plans for a community program on wellness in October.
Why all the activity? Why all the new programs? Because we are determined to grow our church. We are changing our image. We no longer want to be known as “the church across from the golf course”. We want to be the church that lives out its mission, building bridges of compassion, caring and civility in Abington and the surrounding communities. We want people to see how excited we are about sharing our faith and how committed we are to caring for our neighbors.
It’s a lot for a little church like Joy in Christ. But we can do it, because the Spirit is blowing in our congregation and God has promised to be with us no matter what. If you are asking, “How can I help?” Here are some simple things you can do to make our efforts a success:
PARTICIPATE! There is a lot going on, and we hope to attract new faces to Joy in Christ. But we need everyone to be involved, as much as you can. Plan now to attend the Rally Day cookout, the Bible study, the seminar on spiritual care for those with dementia, the jazz brunch. And don’t forget we need your familiar face at worship on Sunday too!
VOLUNTEER! We can’t sustain this kind of schedule without everyone pitching in. If we don’t all help, burnout is an ever present danger. If you are already involved, thanks! If you are looking for ways to help, talk to Jeff Stone or any member of the church council. We will be glad to find a place for you to help.
SHARE THE NEWS! We are planning a community wide news blitz to attract new people to our programs and activities. But we need your help to get the word out. Talk to your friends and neighbors. Tell them about our church. Spread the news about all the wonderful and exciting things we are up to. Follow the example of the first Christians as described in the Book of Acts – tell the story about Joy in Christ.
INVITE A FRIEND! There is no substitute for a personal invitation. Don’t keep your light under a bushel basket! Jesus said we are to be the light of the world. Let your light shine. Tell your next door neighbor; tell your friends and family. Joy in Christ is a wonderfully exciting place to be, a friendly church where EVERYONE is welcome. No reservations required!
If we all pitch in, if we support Joy in Christ, if we share the news and invite our friends, this church will grow and blossom with the fruits of the Spirit. I guarantee it. See you in church!