On February 1: We will be blessed by the youth from the Bokamoso Youth Center, sharing their stories and songs. The Bokamoso youth will lead the 9am service and then the 11am service at Wesley. Rev. Dottie Yunger will be preaching at the 11:15 am service at Metropolitan Memorial.
On February 8: I am feeling brave, so I am going to try something new and have an “Ask the Pastor” sermon time during which I will answer the religious questions you have asked! We have posted a form on our Website at nationalchurch.org/qa as well as links in our Metro Updates for you to pose your questions. You can also write them on a piece of paper and drop it off in the church office addressed to Pat House, who will coordinate the questions (I’m assuming that there will be some overlap between questions). I will NOT SEE the questions ahead of time, so I will address as many as I can during the sermon time. I will also devote the Great Hall session at 10:10am that day to any questions I missed!
On February 15: I am again soliciting your thoughts, but with a different focus and venue. Our Stewardship campaign this year was Writing a New Chapter, and now I want us to work together to write that new chapter. On February 22 and 24, our Church Council will retreat and consider goals that have been proposed by our Pillars in the programmatic areas of our church. In preparation for that retreat, the sermon will focus on Transfiguration (it being Transfiguration Sunday) as well as between services at 10:10am, I am inviting each of you to provide your suggestions, so that when the Church Council deliberates on identifying the goals for 2015 and beyond, we have a rich pool of ideas from which to draw.
The specific question I am asking you to address is: What is your greatest hope for our church in 2015 and beyond? This was one of the questions that was discussed at our tables during the program on Commitment Sunday, but I have heard from many of you that you didn’t have enough time to consider this fully. Now is your chance!
You can do this in a couple of ways: Fill out and submit our online form at nationalchurch.org/qa or write your thoughts on a piece of paper and drop it at the church office addressed to me. You can also join me in the Great Hall at 10:10am where we will have a time for you to share your thoughts and suggestions for your greatest hope for our church this year and beyond.
The Transfiguration is the event in the New Testament in which Jesus is transformed in the sight of the disciples and becomes radiant upon a mountain. It is a pivotal moment in Jesus’ ministry laying the groundwork for the passion to come (which is why we celebrate it on the eve of Lent). The mountain is a meeting place for the temporal and the eternal with Jesus himself as the connecting point, acting as the bridge between heaven and earth. We celebrate that we have Jesus as our connecting bridge between God and the work we have undertaken here on earth.
I am very excited about the wonderful programs that we have underway in our Pillar areas of praising, learning, sharing, caring and serving – all of them filled with promise and possibility. We want to work together to discern where God is calling us to put a particular focus this year and in the next few years and tackle them together with God’s help.
Rev. Dr. Charles Parker