Last Sunday was a really fun!
. . .for a couple of reasons. First of all, it was the first Sunday with all of the Sanctuary chairs out. It was a lot of work unstacking the chairs and figuring out how to get the most spacing we could out of them, but it was absolutely worth it! It was also necessary: last Sunday (March 20th) was the most people we’ve had in the Sunday Service since a month before COVID started!
The other reason yesterday was fun was because it became really apparent to me how many new faces we’ve gained over the past two years—it was apparent because I hardly recognized half of the faces I saw! (The bottom halves, that is!) Yesterday was a great reminder to me of how faithful God has been to see us through the last two years, and how faithful this church has been in trusting him during that time.
We have been though a lot of strange, frustrating, challenging, uncomfortable, and flat-out weird moments since 2020. Remember when the church services were prerecorded—from my dining room? Or when we didn’t sing for ten months? Or when we gave the sermons from the baptistry? You all were so patient and faithful through all of that, and God was so good through everything. We never had to worry about funding—in fact, we were able to expand our staff instead! You never rioted, no matter how hard it got to deal with the restrictions. God provided for us, he worked through us, he connected us with new faces—he proved himself just as faithful in the hard times as in the easy ones.
And now we get to see things begin to open up again: and what better time than just before Easter! This month we get to celebrate the ultimate renewal, the ultimate reopening, the ultimate proof of the faithfulness of God! With bare faces, a full sanctuary, and hearts full of joy! Here’s a run-down of what we have planned:
· Maundy Thursday (April 14th, 7pm)
This service reenacts the story of the Last Supper, including foot-
washing (we wash hands), and communion.
· Good Friday (April 15th, 7pm)
This service reenacts the trial, crucifixion and burial of Jesus
through reading of scripture, singing of hymns, and interactions
with a cross representing Jesus.
· Easter Sunday (April 17th)
o Sunrise Service (6:30am)
In this service we reenact the discovery of the empty tomb
and rejoice in the news of the resurrection of Jesus!
o Easter Brunch (9am)
This will be our first potluck in two years! Bring a dish and
join in fellowship time with others before the Easter service!
o Main Service (10:30-noon—available online)
In this service we join together to celebrate the resurrection
of Jesus as a congregation. Notice the service runs a bit
longer than normal—make your lunch plans accordingly!
I am really excited to celebrate Holy Week with you this year, and to thank God for his faithfulness to us. See you then!
Stay Healthy and stay hopeful!
Sitting down to write this article has actually caused me to do something helpful today. April is coming and that means Easter season is upon us. As I sit here, I have a card listing the services and events happening around Easter weekend. Now, if you are anything like me, being prepared for times like Easter isn’t exactly your strong suit. Like I mentioned, however, writing this article has caused me to do something helpful; I was able to slow down and think about the fact that Easter is upon us.
I discussed an article or two ago what it means to be prepared. As much as I try to be prepared, sometimes… well, often times things slip through the cracks. Easter every year seems like a time that sneaks up on me. I acknowledge it when it comes and celebrate Jesus’ resurrection just as much as the next person, but I’m always surprised by just how fast it comes. While I am able to praise Jesus and celebrate his resurrection, thinking about it ahead of time allows me to appreciate the season and all that happens. When I fail to think of Easter season ahead of time it all just flashes by.
Last year was my first full Easter season as a pastor. Boy did it pass by quickly. I failed to take in some of the things that were offered. I remember some highlights, but I wasn’t fully present for the season. So, as I am slowing down to really be present in this season, I’d encourage you to do the same. I know that is much easier said than done. I’ve been reading a book recently that emphasizes the idea of “being” and not just “doing”. I would encourage you to “be” in this Easter season. Slow down and allow God to move in and through you. If it is a service that calls for joyous celebration, do just that. If it is a service that calls for somber remembrance of Jesus’ act, allow yourself to be in that. It doesn’t require anything special, just allow yourself to feel the feelings. Acknowledge how you feel. And maybe even discuss with someone else those feelings. Make the decision to be fully present where you are at with your savior, Jesus Christ.
About my Birthday!
It’s one of the best days of the year . . . wait, no, it is THE BEST day of the year.
I love my birthday. People that I love text and call me and tell me they love me. I eat as many sweets as I desire, and I do many of my favorite things. It’s a day filled with hugs and happiness, and that is all really, really lovely, but it’s not my primary reason for loving my birthday.
I love my birthday because it’s a day of community. I love my birthday because people that I think are wonderful gather together with other people I think are wonderful. I love my birthday because I get to watch people connect, and laugh and share. And although this year I’m keeping it casual, I often incorporate games for my friends and family that get them giggling and behaving in silly ways. It’s easy to make friends when you’re laughing, and I love it when someone leaves one of my parties with some great memories and a few new numbers in their phone.
Community is one of God’s greatest gifts to us. He designed us in such a way to desire and seek out companionship. He created us as a community in His son, a whole church coming together with all of its gifts and talents to make up one “body.” And that one body is made up of people who are administrators and teachers, piano players and tech people, evangelists and prayer-warriors. Those same people are also great joke-tellers or good listeners, bakers or volleyball players, scrabble aficionados or just good company. Sometimes we are so focused on the skills someone brings to a congregation that we miss seeing the whole person, we miss those community moments of sharing, and simple joys.
A birthday party is a good way to be reminded of those simple joys.
I will be celebrating my 31st Birthday at Turner Lake, April 9th, 2 pm-whenever
All are welcome!
Bring picnic blankets or chairs, and games if you want. No special activities scheduled-just a time of gathering and community. Bring your jokes, your listening skills, the joy of your presence or the honesty of how you are that day. I look forward to seeing you!
Classes are held each Sunday from 9:00 - 10:00 am
Led by Pastor Jack in the Library
Discipleship is an integral part of the church. Believers are called to be in community with each other. But what does that look like? What is discipleship? How do we disciple? Who do we disciple? These will all be questions we answer in Discipleship 101.
The Gospel of Mark
Led by Dave Moore in the Fellowship Hall
The Gospel according to Mark is the shortest of the Gospel stories. Don’t assume there isn’t much to glean from this book, however. Join Elder David Moore as he leads you through the Gospel of Mark!
Led by Pastor Rachel in Classroom # 1 (Bird Room)
So often we come to the Bible and forget that it's the Living Word. In this class we will practice different approaches to prayer and reading the Bible that help us encounter our Creator, intimately and corporately.
TCC Vacation Bible School
has been scheduled for the mornings of July 26-30 (Tues—Sat).
Seniorfest! - May 19, 2022
Special guest speaker, LeRoy Lawson will be exploring the theme, “What’s Old Age Good For?” Seniorfest is one great day of cele-brating, worship, workshops and encouragement. There is no age limit. All are welcome!
Northwest Christian Convention
More information and convention schedule
available at NWChristianNetwork.com
Saturday, April 16th at 10:00 am
Please continue to bring candy and plastic eggs for the egg hunt and deposit them in the boxes in the foyer or in the church office by April 13th! We’re planning on a big turnout!
There are still opportunities to help by filling the eggs with candy on April 14th at 9:00 am, set-up and hiding eggs in the fields on April 16th at 9:00 am, and being greeters and overseeing an age group as they hunt eggs. Please contact Pastor Rachel if you are interested in helping!
Easter Sunday • 9:00-10:00 am
Everyone is invited!
It’s a great way to celebrate Easter as a family in a
way we haven’t been able to for quite a while!
Some suggestions for food items you can bring:
Fruit, Cheese Plate, Salads
Egg Casseroles, Quiches, Ham, Etc.
Tableware and drinks will be provided
Roger Waterman, a representative of the Gideons spoke at TCC on March 20th, sharing the story of their wonderful ministry of distributing the Scriptures throughout the world. The Gideons thank the congregation for an offering of $412.00 to be used to purchase more Bibles to distribute!
Rose “Mickey” Richards
passed away and went home to the Lord on February 25, 2022.
Jerry and Karen Campbell transferred their membership to Turner Christian Church on March 13th. They recently moved from Culver, OR and are part of the TRH community.
John Stroup transferred his membership to Turner Christian Church on March 20th. John is married to Lucy and they live in Stayton.