Dear Good Shepherd,
Matt has had an exceptional number of interruptions this week, and so in the interest of helping him have sermon and study time, I thought I’d do the update.
A BIG thank you to everyone who helped with the Fair last Saturday. It was a resounding and total success, from my perspective. So many different people came through our doors and I think we had a true impact on this area. Thanks for all the hard work and especially to Carmen for keeping a clear goal and organizing so many details and people.
This Sunday is Trinity Sunday. The Trinity is an important but difficult concept and one that, as you grow in Christian maturity and knowledge of scripture, will make more sense, but which remains a deep and great mystery.
Trinity means ‘three’. It refers to the Persons and Being of God. God is Three Persons—Father, Son and Holy Spirit—but he is One Being. This is hard for us to conceive of because we are all one person in one being. The Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit are distinct in their persons—it is not that God sometimes plays the part of Son and then other times plays the part of the Spirit—the Father is always and eternally the Father, the Son has always been the Son, the Word who became flesh, who became a human person to live and die as one of us, the Holy Spirit has always been the Holy Spirit. These Three Persons are in perfect unity, they are in the perfect kind of relationship, they perfectly love each other.
We see the Trinitarian nature of God all through scripture—in Creation, when the Father spoke the Word and the Spirit moved over the face of the water, at the moment of Jesus’ baptism when the Father spoke and the Holy Spirit descended like a dove, and certainly in the book of Revelation when St. John as ‘in the Spirit’ and saw the Son seated upon the throne and heard the voice of the Father.
Matt Perman writes, “If there is one passage which most clearly brings all of this together, it is Matthew 28:19: "Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit." First, notice that the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are distinguished as distinct Persons. We baptize into the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Second, notice that each Person must be deity because they are all placed on the same level. In fact, would Jesus have us baptize in the name of a mere creature? Surely not. Therefore each of the Persons into whose name we are to be baptized must be deity. Third, notice that although the three divine Persons are distinct, we are baptized into their name (singular), not names (plural). The three Persons are distinct, yet only constitute one name. This can only be if they share one essence.”
The whole article is really good and easy to understand.
Here’s the update!
Adult Education on Evangelism: This Sunday begins a two part class on Evangelism by Katy McFadden. Katy has led numerous evangelism training courses and we are blessed to have her come teach us how to follow the Biblical Mandate to go into all the world and preach the Gospel, with words. If you are nervous or unsure about how to talk about your faith in and love for Jesus, come at 9:15 am this week and next.
Thank you and Summer Sunday School: Colleen Kenny Kuk, Christine Osgood and Joe and Andrea Kovac have worked hard this year teaching the children of Good Shepherd about Jesus and the Bible and I am SO GRATEFUL for their hard work Sunday by Sunday. Chris will be taking a much needed break over the summer and will be back in the fall. Colleen and Joe and Andrea will be moving on to other interesting and important ministries (including rest).
This Sunday kicks off Summer Sunday School. This year we’ll be concentrating on memorizing some easy and accessible verses from the Bible. I hope you’ll bring your kids at 9:15. We’ll start out in the sanctuary and move out from there. If you are interested in helping me out this summer, I’d be delighted to hear from you.
Baptism: Meredith Kuk will be baptized next Sunday, June 26. We’re So Delighted to welcome her into the visible Body of Christ. Meredith has been attending Good Shepherd for a while and is seriously following Jesus. I hope you all will make a special effort to be there and rejoice with her and her mom, Colleen.
Good Shepherd’s Annual Summer Festival: THANK YOU So Much, again, to everyone who worked the Fair, who set up and cleaned up and served Ice Cream and cooked Hot Dogs and painted faces, and sang and greeted guests and EVERYTHING. Carmen surpassed herself this year and I think the whole day was a wild success. A well-deserved break goes to everyone!
ACW: Reminder that Sunday, June 19, we are celebrating the collection of the life Choices "Baby Bottles". They will be collected at both services! About 40 bottles were given out. ACW is also doing the Coffee Hour as part of the celebration. ACW will get a sheet cake from Giant/Weis. If you could bring some cleaned fruit a fruit bowl that would helpful. Please let me know, if you are able to bring fruit! Thank you,
Update of Charles Mabula: For those of you who were at the picnic and saw Charles get hurt, he did break his wrist. He is doing fine but would appreciate on-going prayers for a quick recovery.
Picnic Recap: A big Thank You to everyone who came to the picnic in spite of the rain. The rain eventually cleared and we had a great time. I have received a couple of very helpful emails, and welcome more, about what people were confused about bringing and what to expect and so forth. If you were confused at all or have any suggestions for next year, email or facebook me and I will file them all away for the next time. Thanks so much for coming!
Life Choices 5k: Life Choices Center is inviting us to participate in their 5k walk/run. This is a great oppotunity to support their work. The walk/run is the day of the Speidie Fest (August 7, I think). Please contact Samantha Kubik if you would like to be involved. You can get her number from the church office (723-8032)
Join the Good Shepherd facebook page: Matt has restarted the Good Shepherd facebook page that has been rather dormant for the last year. I’ll be updating it regularly with news, information, and articles that you may not get in the Update or via email. If you’re on facebook you can join the page here. In the future, he’ll be starting several facebook “groups”, one for the church as a whole and others for various committees. The benefit of “groups” is that you are notified on your facebook page when a new message is posted on the group page. It’s an easier and faster way to communicate than email.
Podcasts: After a year long pause, the Good Shepherd audio mp3 podcasts are back. I’ll continue to post sermon texts and video but now you can also listen to them on your ipod or mp3 device. We’ve also figured out how to combine the mp3 audio with the video recording to make the video sound significantly better. You can listen to the podcasts here. You can see and hear the significantly improved video sound here or below.
Solemn Communion continues this week. This is a special and intense time for those children in Communion class and I encourage everyone in the church to pray for them during the whole month. If you would like to be involved behind the scenes, I welcome that and there is still time to volunteer. You can email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or leave a message in the office (732-8032) and I will get in touch with you. Thanks so much!
Bible Studies and Mission Groups: The Bible Studies and Mission Groups continue to go very well. I am exceedingly thankful for God’s blessing in and through these groups. We’re hoping to expand the mission groups program next fall and launch at least two more groups in other parts of the greater Binghamton area. If you are interested in hosting a group or think you might be called to lead one, please let me know. If you’d like more information about mission groups please read here. Here are the meeting times and addresses of the mission groups and bible studies.
Mission Groups: (all mission groups meet in homes and in keeping with our Sunday morning sermon series, they are all presently studying Colossians. You are invited to join the one nearest you.
* Mondays at 6:00pm Lee and Jane Bronson’s Mission Group meets at Darrell and Carolyn Dean’s house at 19 Newton Street in Port Dickinson.
*Tuesdays at 6:00pm Ife’s Mission Group meets at Carrie Moorhead’s house at 5 Hancock Street in Binghamton (near the old church)
* Wednesdays at 7:00pm Joe Kovac’s Mission Group meets at 103 Oak Street in Binghamton
* Wednesdays 6:30pm Bill Woollet’s group meets at Mary Lindsey’s House, 41 Hays Street in Southeast Binghamton (near the present church).
Bible Studies (all bible studies meet at the church in the parish hall and each study takes one book at a time and studies verse by verse)
1. Tuesday Morning bible study: Tuesdays at 9:00am—presently studying Romans
2. Thursday Evening Bible Study (for beginners): Thursdays at 6:30pm—presently studying the Book of Acts
3.Men’s breakfast and bible study: Fridays at 6:30am—presently studying the book of Acts
4. Women’s Bible Study: Saturdays at 10:00am—presently studying Revelation
Men’s Breakfast and Bible Study (6:30am every Friday) will start studying a new book of the bible this Friday, the book of Acts. All men are invited and welcome. Joe Barham is scheduled to cook this week.
Open Door Office Hours: For those of you who are new to Good Shepherd, I have open office hours from 2pm to 6pm Tuesday thru Thursday. During these times you are invited to come in to talk with me about anything that’s on your mind with or without an appointment. If you can’t make those hours, but still want to talk to me about something feel free to send me an email (email@example.com) or call the church office (723-8032) to set up an appointment—leave a message if no one answers and we will get back to you.
What on earth does he do all day?: The old joke about pastors is that in the course of any given week we are “6 days invisible and 1 day incomprehensible.” Well, I may be incomprehensible on Sunday but I hope I am not invisible during the week. In case you wonder what I do all day I thought I’d let you know…after all you are paying my salary.
Monday is my day off.
Tuesday through Thursday my work day begins at about 6 to 6.30am (I get up at 4am to have at least some peace before the 5 beasts awaken). I start by listening to lectures or sermons from professors or other pastors dealing with passages or topics I have to teach or preach on that week. From about 9am to 1pm I hole up in my home office to study for sermons , classes and bible studies, write the update, articles and sermons, and/or to go on pastoral visits. I go to lunch at 1pm and then I’m in the office for office hours from 2pm-6pm. On Thursdays I go to Shepherd’s Bowl and lead the Thursday night bible study.
On Friday my work day starts at around 6:00am when I review my notes for men’s bible study which starts at 6:30am and lasts till around 8am. Then I spend most of the day (depending on how the writing goes) hunkering down and composing Sunday’s sermon and prepping notes for Sunday’s class.
On Saturday I continue work on my sermon, usually (hopefully) editing, and often there are various committee meetings and/or events to attend.
On Sundays my workday begins at 4am reviewing and getting the sermon into my head, reviewing class notes, and then by 7am helping Anne with the kids. Then I’m at church until about 2pm and then I collapse and rest until Tuesday.
Most days (except Monday) you can reach me on my cell at 621-9944…but please leave a message if I don’t answer. I get sales calls even on my cell so I don’t answer unless I recognize the number but I do check my phone messages and call back.
The Food Pantry Needs as of 6/14/11 are: Cereal, fruit juice, canned fruit, pasta sauce, soups, tea, hot cocoa, canned meats, coffee, powdered milk, personal products (soap, shampoo, etc.) Thank you and God bless, CJ Johnson
Hospitality Ministry: (from Virginia Wetherbee)
Photo Gallery: Thanks to all of you who brought family pictures to share with us in the Church Family Gallery. It was a fun way to get to know you better. This Sunday we will be taking them down so be sure to go down stairs during coffee hour and get your pictures.
Greeters: Thanks to all of you who have agreed to be greeters at the beginning of the 10:30 service and to those who still plan to volunteer. We will be having a short training session upstairs after the 10:30 service on Sunday soon. We'll let you know the date soon.
Coffee Hour: Thanks also to those who have signed up to help host coffee hour over the next few weeks. Please take a look at the sign up sheet downstairs. It takes 3-4 families working together to make it happen so if you see only one or two family units signed up for a particular week, please add your name. Don't feel you all have to cook or bring something. Clean up and set up are also important. So if you enjoy the fellowship of coffee hour please take responsibility for helping to make it happen.
Map: Have you gotten a glimpse of the large wall map of the Greater Binghamton Area that Sabine Krummel is in the process of creating, that the youth groups plan to enhance with color and that each of you can contribute to by adding the house where you live. Watch for it downstairs.
Summer fun get acquainted activities: Details coming soon. Stay posted.
Team Galatians is scheduled for worship this Sunday. Pauline King is the captain.
Change for Life Campaign: As followers of Christ we must not only stand against abortion but also stand in support of women who choose to have their babies. Consider taking a baby bottle and fill it with your pocket change. Your contribution will help Life Choices Center—an outreach program that provides competent and caring services to women and men struggling to raise children in difficult circumstances. Please bring the filled baby bottles back to Church on Father’s Day June 19. The collected in both services!
Make-up Photo Shoots: If you missed the previous photo sessions, you can have make up pictures at the times and locations below. Please remember to give them our contract number and to return the guest photography slip to Carmen.
Community Bible Church
604 Chenango St
Binghamton. NY 13901
church ph #—-607-724-4583
June 30 & July 1
Contract Number: 60008
Help Needed for the Shepherd’s Bowl: Thank you to everyone who has volunteered since this call went out but we still need more help. If you have Thursday evening free once a month between 5:30pm and 6:30pm (later if you are part of the clean up crew, earlier if you are a cook), please call the office at 723-8032 or reply this email and we’ll plug you into a team.
Sermons from last Sunday: We took a week off from Colossians to preach on the Feast of Pentecost. Here is the sermon text and audio.
Homework Here are the discussion questions from Joe Kovac based on the sermon above: