Hello Brothers & Sisters,
It feels like January has gone by rather quickly. If you have missed any of the messages in our Inherent Worth series, you can listen at our website and access other helpful resources as well.
I know I’ve said this before, but it’s worth repeating. Thank you for being a church that is willing to address difficult issues. Frankly, many churches don’t want to take on the challenging task of raising awareness and calling people to action about various evils that we’re facing today. And because of this, the church has lost its Kingdom-influence and her ability to share the good news with a broken world. We must do better.
Like many of you, I want to see Grantham Church be courageous in our willingness to shine the light of God’s truth and love on the darkness around us. Of course, in taking on this task we are bound to make some mistakes along the way as we learn to navigate the issues in a “third way” and talk responsibly to one another, especially in an intergenerational congregation. The easy thing to do would be not to talk about it, but that’s not our calling as Christ followers. So, I ask that you extend some grace to one another and please be patient as we figure this out together.
As I’m sure you’re aware, this Sunday we will be looking at the pervasive problem of pornography in our culture. I’d like to set us all at ease knowing that the most explicit aspects of this topic will be addressed in the combined Learning Community with Tammy Stauffer (She’s Somebody’s Daughter). Parents, we leave it to you to decide if your children are ready to hear the topic discussed in this setting. We recognize that the age of a child isn’t always the best way to determine what they’re ready and able to process, so please do what you think is best knowing the subject matter.
After the Learning Community, we will hear from Susan Vigliano (Associate Pastor at Mechanicsburg BIC) in the worship service. Her message will touch on pornography, but she will speak more broadly to all of the issues covered in this series. She will speak to how God has called us to be light in the darkness and encourage us to follow Jesus into the most difficult places. Nevertheless, if parents would rather their children not be in the service, Pastor Denise welcomes 4th and 5th graders to join Kids Own Worship when they’re invited to do so before the message.
This coming Sunday we conclude our Inherent Worth series with Peace Sunday. By now you should have received an Ingathering Offering envelope indicating how your financial gifts will be used to support several local ministries. This special offering will take place following the sermon. It will also be an opportunity for you to give us your feedback on the series. You will find a response card in your bulletin that allows you to share your thoughts and help us discern where the Spirit is leading from here. Please fill that out and be prepared to drop it in the basket with your special offering. If you have any questions, please contact the church office.
Also, I wanted to remind you that we are re-launching our sermon based small groups in February. As I said last week, small groups are our primary “personal space” vehicle for building community and making disciples at Grantham Church. We are working hard to build this ministry and increase involvement in the months ahead. If you’re not a part of one already, I want to encourage you to try one out this spring. If you have questions or you’re interested in joining a group, you can email Ron Burwell at firstname.lastname@example.org or the church office at email@example.com. Next week I will be revealing the focus for our Lent 2018 series.
Finally, we are officially in our search for a full-time Associate Pastor. I’m happy to report that we have a search team made up of the following people: Roger Sider, Joanna Barnhouse, John Yeatts, Eric Seibert, Linda Gemberling, Kathy Stuebing, and Dave Warren. Our first meeting is next Wednesday at 6:00 pm. Please be in prayer for the team and for the search process. I believe the Spirit will use this group to help us discern what gifted person God is calling to step into this important role during this season of church life. I will periodically keep you updated on the progress. Thank you for your support!
May God continue to bless Grantham Church as we seek to follow Jesus together.
Grace & Peace,
* This post was first sent as an email to all church members. If you would like to receive the weekly email from the pastor, please let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org