It was a true pleasure to spend last week with the youth at Passport Missions Camp. Despite the heat and long days, our young people impressed me greatly with their good attitudes and willingness to work hard at their mission sites. I saw God at work in a variety of ways and was pleased to see our young people reflecting on their faith. A couple of them have made significant commitments during camp and after our return, and I was so blessed and inspired by the testimonies shared by Hope and Emma during worship on Sunday. We owe much gratitude to Frances Smith and Lucy Woodell for their willingness to be chaperones and for the wonderful ways they interacted with and supported our kids. Thanks also to all of you who prayed for us during the week, who served as Camp Buddies, and who have shown an ongoing commitment to and support for these young people.
Now that we are back home, however, I want to ask for your continuing prayers as well as your participation in the vital ministry to our youth as well as to our children. During my sermon on Sunday, I focused on the message of Paul in 1 Corinthians 1 and the various resources God makes available to the church. In 1 Corinthians 1:7, Paul assures his readers that “you do not lack any spiritual gift as you eagerly wait for our Lord Jesus Christ to be revealed.” Even though the Corinthian church was struggling with divisions and difficulties, Paul believed that God had provided them with every gift and resource necessary to fulfill their calling.
I am convinced that this statement is true of our congregation as well, but I also believe that living into our calling as a church requires that ALL of us willingly offer the gifts and talents God has given us. We had a lengthy conversation in Church Council this week about the challenges we are facing, and one of the things that was emphasized was our need for more workers in our youth and children’s areas. We need more volunteers with children in Extended Session, with youth and children in Sunday School, with our youth on Sunday evenings, and with AWANA this fall. It is wonderful to talk about being a church that will welcome and grow with young families, but such growth can only occur if we are willing to step forward and invest our time and talents in these important areas of ministry.
As we continue to pray for our church – and I hope you are using the 100 Days of Prayer Devotional Guide – I ask that you pray that God will raise up the leaders we need and pray specifically about whether you might get involved in our youth and children’s ministries. If you want to know more about opportunities and possibilities for service, please contact Amy or me to ask questions or to share your thoughts and ideas.
The Yates Baptist Association Quarterly Associational Gathering and Worship Service will be held on Tuesday, July 17, 2018 at 7:00 pm
Faith Baptist Church
3321 Cheek Road
Durham, NC 27704
Everyone is welcome to attend.
Monday & Tuesday, June 18 & 19
- Volunteers to serve and clean up – 5:15 – 6:30 pm
- Childcare volunteers from 6:15 – 7:30 pm
- Salads to accompany a sandwich tray on Tuesday evening
- Donations to help with the cost of the sandwich tray
Please let Anne Pokorny know how you can help!
The Saintly Senior Sojourners will be hosting a day trip to the Billy Graham Library in Charlotte, N.C. on Wednesday August 8, 2018. We will be leaving the church at 8:00 am sharp and returning by 6:00 pm. The estimated individual cost to charter a bus is $40.00 per person. This trip is open to all church family as well as your own family and friends. The library tour is free. An onsite restaurant is available for lunch as well as a store for your shopping pleasure – the only other out-of-pocket expenses.
If you would like to be part of this fellowship trip, please let Robin or Jim know by noon on Friday July 6, 2018. We need to know early how many are going so that we can charter the right size bus (up to 57 passengers). Wouldn’t it be wonderful to have a bus full of sojourners! Thanks, and all God’s blessings to you.
Thanks for your response to the food drive for the Yates Association Food Pantry. The shelves are filling up. They no longer need beans (of any kind) or corn. At this point, the greatest need is for:
- Juice and juice boxes
- Jelly Cereal
- Canned meat
You may bring your donations by Sunday, June 17. You may leave donations in the brown bins outside the Hospitality Room or bring them to the church office during the week. Thanks in advance for your generosity in continuing to meet the needs of hungry people in our city. Please note that outdated food items should not be included, so please be sure to check the expiration dates on food items. 🙂
Over the past several months, a small group has been studying the book Growing Young: 6 Essential Strategies To Help Young People Discover and Love Your Church. The purpose of the book is to guide churches in examining how to create an environment that will attract and retain young people ages 15 – 29. The book highlights several qualities that generally appear in churches that are reaching and connecting with youth and young adults:
- Empowering and entrusting young people to perform ministry.
- Empathizing with young people instead of judging them.
- Proclaiming Jesus as the centerpiece of God’s story and living out His message in our daily life.
- Focusing on creating/maintaining warm peer and intergenerational relationships.
- Prioritizing young people and families everywhere in the church.
Enabling young people to be good neighbors locally and globally.
The authors of Growing Young stress that young people deal with three ultimate questions: “who am I?”; “where do I fit?”; and “what difference do I make?”. Churches need to assist young people in answering these questions relating to identity, belonging, and purpose. In doing so, we need to care enough about young people to try to understand their lives – both the good and the bad. In particular, we need to appreciate the fact that young people are much more likely to feel “extreme” stress than mature adults.
The last session of the book study was devoted to identifying some things that Hope Valley is doing well in relating to our young people as well as brainstorming some ideas concerning things we could do better or start doing. One idea was to invite young people who have recently graduated or are home from college to join the choir for the summer. This was done, and several young people are singing. I think you will notice the difference they make!
Knowing that our young people are both the present and the future of the church, it is imperative that we provide the fellowship, programs, and resources that encourage them to respond and participate. In order to do so, there might be a need to make some changes or start something new. While doing this, we also need to preserve our identity as an intergenerational congregation. Conversations have started, and we hope others will join the discussion as well in the days ahead. If there is interest, we will offer a second study of Growing Young in the fall. Please contact me if you would like to learn more.
– Mike Dossett
Gorman Baptist Church is organizing a trip to the Creation Museum & Ark Encounter in Petersburg, Kentucky. The trip is planned for September 17-20, 2018. Cost is $430 per person (double occupancy). Cost includes bus, lodging, all entrance fees & 50% of all meals. Open to all adults. If interested, call Debbie McLeod at Gorman Baptist.