When I came to Home Moravian Church as associate pastor, I found that some things had changed since I was a child here—and some had not. The design of the bulletin, for example, appears unchanged since my six-year-old self drew pictures on it during worship hour. (People jumping off the church roof, or planes circling the belfry, King Kong–style, were much featured in my repertoire.)
So it’s a little surprising that the earth did not tremble, nor the heavens shake, when we made a change to the design of the bulletin last fall. Have you noticed? On October 27, 2013, just below our venerable founding date, were these words:
Fulfilling Christ’s call to love God, live in community, and serve our neighbor.
This is the new mission statement of Home Moravian Church. Developed by a Joint Board task force and approved by the Board of Elders, it captures a vision for our church and enables us to evaluate every plan or action in terms of how well that plan or action matches the vision.
Look, for example, at the renovation of the Chapel—rapidly (and noisily!) underway as I write. Can the transformation of Chapel into Saal help us in our quest to love God? Yes—by providing new space that may inspire creative worship, which can bring us into closer relationship with the divine. Can it help us to live in community? Imagine a Sunday School class or other group activity in which flexible seating arrangements allow us to see each other’s faces and hear each other’s voices clearly as we learn together. Can it help us to serve our neighbor? Improving the worship experience for overflow crowds on Christmas Eve is just one way we envision serving neighbors as this new space, opening directly onto the street, invites them in.
As we move forward in 2014, what else will we do as a church to increase our love for God, strengthen our life in community, and further serve our neighbor? And what will we do as individuals to reach those same goals?
Besides being a great guide and an attractive addition to the bulletin design, this mission statement has something else to recommend it: It’s short. Short enough to memorize! And when we memorize something, we say we’ve learned it not “by mind,” but “by heart.” Let us take this mission statement to heart in the coming year, and see how it draws us closer to God, to one another, and to our neighbor.
We are excited to welcome Peggy Matthews, who joins our part-time staff, along with Lehoma Goode, in the important role of pastoral care and visitation. Peggy is an ordained minister and social worker. She graduated from Wake Forest Divinity School in 2002 and served a two-year residency at the Moses Cone Health System in clinical pastoral education. Her most recent ministry was at First Presbyterian Church of Greensboro where she served for nine years as Parish Chaplain and Director of Congregational Care. Peggy and her husband, Sam, are Home Church members. They have two daughters, three granddaughters and one great grandson. We welcome her many gifts and passion for people to our staff.
The winter series of Inquirers’ Classes for those who are interested in joining Home Church, or learning more about the church, will be held on four Sundays beginning February 9. The classes will cover Moravian history, theology, governance, and Home Church and its ministries. The classes begin at 11:15 am after worship and will be held in the Parlor unless otherwise noted.
...Grady Dunn, Sharon Spangler
Recovering at Home:
…Blevins Baldwin, Hallene Brindle, Joan Cotterill, Penny Denny, Juanita Disher, Pat Dyer, Kate Hix, Terry Minnis, Barbara Rominger, Elizabeth Sides, Carol Southerland
...Teresa Cude on the loss of her brother, Mike Hutchins, who died on December 27.
…The family and friends of Iris Amos, who died on January 12.
…Jim Pettit on the loss of his mother, Wilma Pettit, on January 16, in Columbus, OH.
…Paulette Brewer on the loss of her father, Gurney Vestal, on January 17.
…The family and friends of Dorothy James, who died on January 21.
…The family and friends of Beulah Jones, who died on January 22.
Thank you notes...
Home Church Membership – Please accept my sincere appreciation for the outpouring of your love for my dear Iris. You showed your love in many ways, telephone calls, visits, flowers, cookies and prayers. These past two plus years were not easy for her, but with the congregation’s love and God’s help she has won the victory and is now in the more immediate presence of our Lord. Thanks be to God! —T.K. Amos
Elizabeth Sides extends her deepest appreciation to the congregation for all the expressions of love and support received during her recent surgery.
Please make reservations for the 5:45 dinner by the Monday beforehand, or join us for the program in CE101 at 6:30.
Moravian Music and Worship Series in CE101: For 5 weeks, we mix hymns and liturgies and hymnals, looking at old and new, to learn about the music and worship traditions we cherish.
Young Adult Class (CE 208): This lively group continues with more very meaningful conversations based on various current topics of interest in the news, and how they might be seen through the lens of Christianity. The resource used is called “The Wired Word.” Betty Cole, Drew Hancock, John and Susan Mickey take turns facilitating the discussions.
The Gospel of Luke (Club Room): The purpose of this study is to read and discuss this New Testament book verse by verse, asking deliberate questions while seeking deeper understanding. February moves into chapter 7. Teachers are Helen and Doug Beets, Tom Williams.
February 4, 7:30 p.m., Salem Band Concert: Directed by Eileen M. Young, the band will perform a Winter Concert on Tuesday, February 4, at 7:30 pm in Brendle Recital Hall in Scales Fine Arts Center at Wake Forest University. The program features classic band literature and popular favorites, including music by Shostakovich, Offenbach, Holisinger, Persichetti, a big-band medley, and more. The concert is free and open to the public.
February 17, 11:30 a.m., Messiah Moravian: Senior Friends joint quarterly potluck luncheon sponsored by the Salem Creek RCC. Yadkin developer Dean Naujoks will be our speaker, on water quality and condition of the entire Yadkin River flood plain. Anyone interested in this environmental issue is welcome.
March 5, 11 a.m.: Ash Wednesday Day of Prayer Service, sponsored by Women’s Fellowship. The Rev. Dr. Gail R. O’Day Dean of the School of Divinity, Wake Forest University, preacher. Fellowship Time at 10:00 a.m., Fellowship Hall. Nursery provided. When did Day of Prayer begin? Here's the answer...
March 16: Receive New Members during the 10:00 am worship hour, for those participating in the Inquirers’ classes February 9-March 2. Persons desiring to join in March are encouraged to contact one of the pastors or Jane Shore in the church office (722-6171).
April 13: Palm Sunday
April 20: Easter Sunday
May 2-4, Women's Fellowship Spiritual Life Retreat: All ladies of Home Church, please mark your calendar for the Spiritual Life Retreat on 2014 at Laurel Ridge. The retreat facilitator for this provincial spring event is our very own pastor, the Rev. Ginny Tobiassen. More details to come, Tamra Thomas, PWB President
The capital campaign, "It's Our Time. It's Our Home," will conclude with the completion of the renovation of the chapel into the Saal. The five-year endeavor to raise funds for preservation and improvement of our historic facilities will wrap up soon.
Campaign Chairmen John and Susan Mickey addressed the congregation on Sunday, February 2, 2014, outlining the details of the projects accomplished since the kick-off, as well as providing an update of the financial report of the campaign.
The final campaign project, the Saal, was begun the first week of January and is on time for completion before Easter. Look for announcements from a planning group preparing for the celebration of the opening of this new space for new ministry!
Twenty brown, maple-seat, white-backed pews from the 50s-era Chapel are available and on view on the stage of Fellowship Hall. The pews vary, from 10'4'' to 11'9''. A team of Home Church craftsmen will custom fit these lovely pieces for a minimum donation of a chair for the new Saal–$250. Due to the limited number of pews, orders will be taken on a first-come, first-served basis. Please contact the team leader, Jimmy Moore, at 655-9118 to save a pew!
The ministry of support and intercession provided through the Home Church Prayer Tree is an essential part of our congregational life. Appreciation is expressed to Hessie Williams who has coordinated the work of the Prayer Tree for a number of years and is stepping down to work in other areas of church life. Appreciation is also extended to Katherine Petree who will begin coordinating the work this month. Katherine has been a part of the Prayer Tree herself and we are glad for her willingness to serve in this important way.
Donating whole blood or platelets were Beth Baldwin (P), Ted Bowen, Max Brady, Bill Gramley, Cathy Guidetti (P), Karl Kapp, John Mickey (P), Bob Miller, Suzanne Miller, Paul Morse, Gordon Nifong, Kay Phillips, Henry Smith, Jr., Peck Spach, Arthur Spaugh and Susan Spence.
The demand for blood transfusions is growing faster than donations; and although about 60% of our U.S. population are eligible to donate, only 5% do in a given year. Please make it your goal to donate at least once this year at your convenience. The total time from signing in to leaving is about one hour, but the actual donation time is 10-12 minutes. Call the American Red Cross – 1-800-733-2767 and help save as many as 3 lives.
Next MOC Breakfast May 4, Men’s Retreat at Laurel Ridge October 3-5
Please keep Sunnyside in your thoughts throughout the new year. Standard food items needed are peanut butter, saltine crackers and dry pasta noodles. Please bring food items to our Sunday Sustenance for Sunnyside Ministry box in the West Vestibule.