Please join us for a joint worship experience on the grounds at Quinn Chapel A.M.E. on Sunday, June 29th at 10:30 a.m. followed by a picnic. This service is an annual event in the Georgetown Road corridor welcoming neighbors and friends to this historic church as the welcome of Christ is extended to all. Leading the service will be their pastor, the Rev. Kenneth Golphin, and our pastor Mark Johnson. Please bring a camp chair and stay for the picnic of hamburgers and hot dogs. If you are able, please sign-up to bring a dessert item to share. Proceeds from the picnic will be used to benefit Allen Chapel A.M.E. of Danville, Kentucky after severe damage from a flood. Allen Chapel's pastor of 8 years is the Rev. Revonda Bright who was first a member of Quinn when she began her ministerial calling.
Our identity is shaped by our participation in the many groups in which we belong. Our place as members of different families, workgroups, neighborhoods, and citizens are interwoven in mutual dependency. Over the years, followers of Christ have understood how their place within the family of God as committed contributors to Jesus' beloved community is the model for all other social relationships. This Sunday we will celebrate the grand belonging we have inherited in Christ with gratitude, purpose, and faith.
One of the greatest skills to develop in our spiritual maturity is deepening the experience and practice of empathy in our lives. Catholic writer Henry Nouwen wrote in his book on Solitude, “When we honestly ask ourselves which person in our lives mean the most to us, we often find that it is those who, instead of giving advice, solutions, or cures, have chosen rather share our pain and touch our wounds with a warm and tender hand. The friend who can be silent with us in a moment of despair or confusion, who can stay with us in an hour of grief and bereavement, who can tolerate not knowing, not curing, not healing and face with us the reality of our powerlessness, that is a friend who cares.” Our scripture portion from the Gospel of Mark illustrates the complete opposite, where power politics put into action a brutal and shocking plan of revenge. Join us as we wrestle with these two competing visions of how to use our influence in the world.
As a recent graduate of Baptist Seminary of Kentucky, I had hoped to continue my work with Central Baptist Church long into the future, but circumstances have changed. I am sending this letter to formalize my decision. This letter serves as my letter of resignation as Minister for children at Central with my last Sunday to be July 29, 2018. As previously arranged, I will be out of town participating in training events for Catechesis of the Good Shepherd on Sunday, July 15, and will be preaching at Eminence Baptist Church on July 22. On July 29, I will finalize the Summer Sundays and conduct the scheduled children’s ministry team meeting in the conference room during the Sunday school time (9:45-10:30) as plans need to be made for the fall regardless of my presence with the children. I continue to discern how God might best use my abilities and leadership training. At this time, several avenues have opened and I covet the prayers of friends at Central as my family and I move forward. I strive to extend “mutual reverence” to others, as author Lonni Collins Pratt describes it. This mutual reverence extends to all people and derives from a conviction that all people are made by God, in the image of God. I appreciate the opportunity I have had to learn more about inclusion and hospitality of others from my time at Central. Grace and Peace, Sara Herrington Jones
This Sunday, we continue our summer theme of gratitude looking at Mark 5:22-43 and the interweaving of two critical healing stories in Jesus' earthly ministry. Each story speaks of the tension between waiting and deliverance as we seek to practice our faith with both persistence and patience. We will also celebrate communion in each service. May our gathering renew our purpose and commitment as God's people: learning in grace, serving in love, waiting in hope and welcoming in joy all that God has in store for us.
Our summer theme of gratitude continues this Sunday as we ponder the challenge of thankfulness during difficult and stressful times. Looking at the story of Jesus calming the storm in Mark 4:35 and following, we too will seek after his presence during the troubles and disruptions of our lives. We will also incorporate our strong advocacy for the full and equal welcome and inclusion of the LGBTQ+ community in the 11 a.m. service in preparation for Pride on June 30th. When things grow difficult and appear ominous may we seek and discover the peace of Christ who guides us through the storm.
A prayer offered Sunday compiled from the words of the congregation about our summer theme of Gratitude.
During the summer, we will be offering "Next Steps." It will provide a way to follow-up from the previous Sunday's theme with a very specific course of action. These steps might invite further reading and study, or introduce and teach a welcoming and deepening spiritual practice, or suggest a change in behavior, to join a plan of service or to set in motion a specific way to offer a helping hand to someone in need.
Last week I was in Dayton for the Alliance of Baptists Gathering. And I must say, as an Alliance congregation, I think we're in good company. From challenging speakers and thoughtful presenters to gracious and welcoming hosts, the Alliance continues to surprise me with it's ever-widening welcome and it's dedication to issues of justice for all people.