The Disciples Voice January 2017 Edition
Click on this website link to see the PDF version of this Newsletter: https://www.dropbox.com/s/cgs633tpssvoj20/NL011817.pdf?dl=0
New Year’s Greetings from Sharon Watkins 01/04/2017 (Excerpt)
Dearest Friends in Christ – “Hope is a star that shines in the night, leading us on till the morning is bright.” From the Advent promise of Emmanuel: God with us; to the Epiphany revelation: God-with-us-now, we hope.
I confess, as 2017 begins, my heart is bruised by the pain and division the United States and Canada have experienced which have filtered into our communities and congregations. Antagonistic elections in the United States have upended civil discourse. Repeated public incidents of both individual and institutional racism have fractured relationships in communities. And beyond our borders, civil wars in places like South Sudan and Syria, as well as natural disasters in long-suffering Haiti, only increase the need for healing of all kinds.
Still, along with “all of creation” in Romans 8:18, we wait expectantly “for the children of God to be revealed.” In fact, we hope to be among them. We are Disciples of Christ, a movement for wholeness in a fragmented world. We know God to be a God of abundance who provides enough for all and makes room enough for all.
This is the time for Disciples to shine! We have long found ways to live together in unity for the sake of God’s mission. Our ability to respect (and engage!) a diversity of faithful opinions is needed now more than ever. Our emphasis on healing the rifts of racism with pro-reconciling work is foundational to moving forward in our part of the world and globally. Our shared sense of service that came through loud and clear in our Mission Gatherings of 2016 gives us some of the connections we need to start living into the wholeness God so ardently wishes for us.
Our deep hope in God’s healing presence leads us to action.
. . .
With hope in Christ undimmed, I greet you in this New Year. May we all resolve to live right now in “the assurance of things hoped for!” (Hebrews 11:1)
Rev. Dr. Sharon E. Watkins
General Minister and President
Christian Church (Disciples of Christ)
in the United States and Canada
Reconciliation – The Love of Christ Compels Us (2 Corinthians 5:14-20)
January 18-25, 2017 is the annual observance of the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity.
Please be in prayer this Friday, the day our next president is inaugurated, and throughout 2017 join Christians everywhere in praying ~ “that they may all be one.”
Opportunities to Serve at CCC
January 21, 2017 9 am
Take down our Live Nativity display
January 21, 2017 1 – 4 pm
Benefit for the KylerStrong Foundation 1st Annual Charity Auction at West Chester Antique Mall
January 26 7 pm
Stewardship Meeting on “Turn Back Time Tailgate” (TBTT) event. This event will be a blast. Come and Learn about it. All are welcome.
January 28 9 am & 12 – 1 pm
Over-the-Rhine Soup Kitchen (located at 1620 Vine Street Cincinnati, OH 45202 – go around to the back of the building) TO HELP PREPARE & SERVE A MEAL IN OVER-THE-RHINE, call 513-754-0777 to volunteer. We leave the church at 9, go to the kitchen, prepare the meal, serve from 12 to 1 and then clean up. Depending on the number of people we have, we get back to the church between 2:30 and 3:30. You do not have to be a member of this church, this faith, or any faith to volunteer.
January 31 5-8 pm
Stepping Forward Dinner ~ Serving a meal to 100+ needy folks ~ Meet at Faith Community United Methodist Church, 8230 Cox Road, West Chester OH 45069.
Opportunities to Study at CCC
Sunday Mornings 9:30 am
- Adult Bible Study
- CYF (grades 9-12))
- Chi Rho (grades 5-8)
- CCF (grades 3-4)
- Children Bible Study (ages 4 – 2nd grade)
- Toddler (ages 2-3)
Opportunities to Sing at CCC
Wednesday Evening Practice
- 7:00-7:30 pm Ablaze Choir (ages 5-11)
- 6:30-7:15 pm Handbell Choir
- 7:30 pm Adult Choir
Upcoming Events at CCC
Thursday, JANUARY 19
- 7:00 p.m. A Service of Remembrance, Reflection, Repentance & Resolve (All are invited and welcome)
Saturday Feb 4, 9 am
Christian Men’s Fellowship (CMF) will have its next breakfast meeting at 9AM, Saturday, Feb. 4 at the Marriott Hotel in Union Centre.
Sunday, MARCH 5
3:00 pm Cincinnati Civic Orchestra Winter Concert
Sounds of Christmas
On December 18, CCC Youth (Cara R, CJ Y, Drew D, Maia T & friend Nick B) accompanied by 5 adults (Ed V. Linda H, Rhonda G, Lyle & Laura D) went caroling to our homebound members and friends, Carol L, Dottie M, Wilma and Ivan W, Jack K, Bill G, and Pearl T). Said Laura D: “My favorite part is when the people we go to carol for join in and sing with us! Some of them have gorgeous voices, but even if they don’t, it’s all to the glory of God. It is a wonderful feeling of unity! I swear this blesses us and the youth as much as the folks we go visit.”
College Dinner Outing ~ Dec. 20, 2016
Troy was delighted to sit down and share food and conversation with three of CCC’s college students: Calvin D, Cara R, and C.J. Y. Blaze Pizza was our restaurant of choice, new to Cara and C.J., as our standard bd’s Mongolian is no longer in business. Nonetheless, stories were swapped, friendships renewed, and holiday cheer shared over hot pizza and cold drinks.
Please remember these and other college students in your prayers as they continue developing and discovering God’s call upon their lives!
U. N. Seminar for Youth 2017
The United Nations Seminar for Youth is a week-long trip sponsored by the Christian Church in Ohio that takes place every other year. This year, it will be held on February 24 -March 4, 2017 and Drew D. and I will be part of a group of 22 youth (10-12 grades) and 8 adults from Ohio.
In preparation, participants write a brief paper on the purpose of the United Nations and a second longer paper (2000 words) on either “Human Trafficking” or “Immigration” which are the two focus topics for the trip.
We will be going first to New York City where we will worship on Sunday at Riverside Church and spend the rest of the afternoon touring the Art Museum or History Museum. On Monday, we will visit the Today Show at its outside venue (to wave to Mom and Dad) and then we will take a tour of the United Nations Building. During this hour-long guided tour, we will learn about the organization
itself and the work done both within the 18-acre NYC complex and all throughout the world. In the afternoon, we will take the Staten Island Ferry past the Statue of Liberty and visit the Staten Island Museum. The day will conclude with a visit to the Empire State Building to view NYC at night. On Tuesday, after hearing a guest speaker on international human trafficking and visiting the One World Trade Center Monument, we will spend the rest of the day sightseeing. That evening, we will see a Broadway musical.
We depart on Wednesday morning for Washington, D.C. We will have a guided tour of the National Cathedral, attend Ash Wednesday services at National City Christian Church, and see a presentation by Rev. Dr. Sharon Stanley, Director of Refugee and Immigration Ministries. Thursday, we will attend a Coffee Talk with Senator Sherrod Brown in the Capitol Building, tour the Capitol Building, attend talks in the House and/or Senate gallery, meet with our Congressional representatives, and have dinner at Union Station. After dinner, we will attend a comedy play at The Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. On Friday morning, we will participate in a service project at the Capitol Area Food Bank. In the afternoon, we will break into groups to visit Smithsonian Museums. Our evening will end in the Ronald Reagan Building where we will watch a performance of The Capitol Steps, an American political satire group which has been performing since 1981 and has released over 40 albums, consisting primarily of song parodies.
All this, with other group activities packaged into a tight day-to-day schedule, makes this trip an amazingly memorable, life-changing event. We are so blessed to be able to offer this opportunity to the youth of Ohio, and thankful for the donations of time and money to make this happen.
PASTOR’S CLASS for 5th & 6th graders
Pastor Troy Sybrant will lead 5th & 6th graders interested in knowing more about Christ and who are considering the possibility of baptism at a future date.
This year’s curriculum, Prepare the Way, focuses on Disciple understandings of faith, repentance, baptism, forgiveness, and gifts of the Holy Spirit.
We are deeply saddened by the passing of these dear friends:
Virginia “Ginny Mahne” Dec 14, 2016
Carole A. Kubrin Dec 17, 2016
Larry Scott Jan 9, 2017
Heaven has 3 new angels.
2016 Poinsettias Given
In Memory of
NINA REINMAN by the BAIRD FAMILY
MARVIN “BUTCH” BERNETT by LINDA BERNETT
JULIA CASSIDY by the TARBOX & ANDRESS FAMILIES
CHRISTOPHER ALLAN WILLIAMS by CARL & SUE TARBOX
OUR LOVED ONES by PERRY & MAUREEN MATTERN
ALSON & MAXINE JOHNSON by RICH & SALLY ENGLE
DONNA FERGUSON by RC FERGUSON
REV. BILL BACKSTROM & REV. RICHARD GORSUCH by AMY, ABBEY & TROY SYBRANT
MARION & PHYLLIS CLAYTON and LEONARD & MARTHA PHILLIPS by DON & RUTH PHILLIPS & MRS. STANLEY KOBOS, MR. & MRS. CHARLES DANIEL, and JOE DANIEL by VIC & DIANE KOBOS
In Honor of
Our Children (REBECCA WOODS, ROBERT BOWMAN, & DAVID BOWMAN) by BETTY & BOB BOWMAN
Our GRANDPARENTS (MIKE & CAROL OETZEL, LEN & JAN BROZ) by the BROZ FAMILY
In Celebration of
OUR FAMILY by SCOTT, SARAH, MATTHEW & CAMERON FERGUSON
TROY SYBRANT’S 20 YEARS IN MINISTRY by AMY & ABBEY SYBRANT
In Gratitude for all that DAD AND MOM have done for us this past year! WILBERT & LISA ROMAIN
For the GLORY OF ABUNDANT LIFE by THANKSGIVING LOVE
From LAFWA, Inc.
Thank you so much for your gifts to LAFWA for Wilby & Lisa. We greatly appreciate you partnering with us to promote the gospel of Jesus Christ in the Dominican Republic. God is doing great things in the Dominican Republic with your help.
From Reach Out Lakota:
On behalf of Reach Out Lakota, Inc. I would like to thank you for your recent generous donation of $100 on behalf of our holiday giving program. Because of your contribution, we will be able to provide Christmas gifts to children in need in our community.
Your generosity allows us to continue to expand our services as needs increase. Thank you for your support and being a good neighbor to the residents of West Chester and Liberty Townships we serve.
Thanks for those who served at the Stepping Forward Dinner:
On Nov. 29th, 15 volunteers from Compass Christian prepared and served dinner, made and passed out salads, desserts, washed pots, pans, dishes, and cleaned up in the kitchen, serving area, and dining room in order to provide for 164 deserving members of our community.
THANKS to: Kay Y, Pam H, Perry & Maureen M, Alice A, Jeanne Y, Steve Se, Laura D, Debora A, Ruth P, Michael, Jennifer, Caroline, & Katie H, & Ed V.
From Mairi H. :
THANKS so much to all who contributed to our 2016 Angel Tree Reach-Out Lakota program. This will be a sign that God, along with our community, is there for those precious kids and their families. We originally signed up for 40 children but with the monetary donations, we helped 50.
Thanks You’s from CCC Staff:
Susan H. “Thank you so much for the Christmas gift! Your generosity is so touching and greatly appreciated! It is a pleasure to serve you each week and share the love of Christ through the music at Compass Christian Church.”
Anna M. “Dear Compass Church Friends ~ Thank you so much for the generous gift. I wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New 2017.”
Donne H. “To my CCC friends ~ Thank you for your warmth & generosity! With Love & Light ~”
Troy S. “Thank you for your extraordinarily generous Christmas gift, the thoughtful cards, delicious baked goods, and other presents that brightened the holidays for me and my family. Blessings ~”
Local: For people of faith to open their hearts to listen to all points of view and practice empathy towards those with differing opinions.
Regional: For DOC members to be leaders in their communities by UNIFYING around & demonstrating the words of our identity statement: “We are Disciples of Christ, a movement for wholeness in a fragmented world. As part of the one body of Christ, we welcome ALL to the Lord’s Table as God has welcomed us.”
Global: For all Christians to fulfill the words of Matthew 25 by proclaiming the gospel of Jesus Christ through their service to those suffering and in need.
On Sunday Jan. 15 it was announced that the Board had approved the placing of an “Acreage for Sale” sign to gauge the level of community interest and get ideas about what a portion of our property is worth. That portion is at the
far east end of the property near the creek, and while it cannot be used by us, it could have value to others looking to connect with adjacent properties. The sign allows us to gauge interest and value without hiring a realtor and thereby indicating an interest or promise to sell. The Board has no interest in selling at this time, but simply wants to be better informed about what options the congregation might consider going forward. Should you have any questions, just ask.
—Bob Phillips, Moderator
COMPASS CHRISTIAN CHURCH TEXT ALERTS
Did you know Compass Christian Church has an alert system where you can receive important text messages right to your phone?! Church closings or delays due to weather, emergency notifications, or last-minute changes to programs —all can be sent directly to your phone via a text message!
To sign up, text “CompassAlerts” to 84483 from your phone, or go to www.rainedout.com and search for “Compass.” Select “Compass Christian.” From that website, you can sign up to receive text alert messages. Phone numbers will remain private and only important alert-level texts will be sent. Sign up today to be included!
Reach Out with Helping Hands
Have a New Mission!
If you would like to knit, crochet, or quilt in a prayerful way, please consider joining us for an organizational meeting on Sunday, Feb. 5 after church. We will present information on the Ministry as we enjoy fellowship and desserts. Anyone who wants to learn is invited to come ~ we will be glad to teach you! All skill levels can participate.
Beginning Feb. 12, Mad Hatters will meet after church on the 2nd and 3rd Sundays of each month. It will be a time of prayer and meditation as we work together to create the shawls. Please contact Debi F. or Carol Y. to find out how you can be part of this ministry!
Our Food Pantry – Our Cupboard is Getting Bare
Our Wonderful Library Corner
In July we will gather as ONE for the General Assembly in Indianapolis. Thousands of Disciples gather from across the United States and Canada to demonstrate our unity in service to the Christ. We will hear inspiring messages, elect a new General Minister and President, hear about the results from Mission First! and learn together. Bible studies on the theme text (John 17:20-21a) from scholars at Disciple-related seminaries are available online so you can go deeper into the scripture.
January 29 is the fifth Sunday of the month, so let’s show the world we are ONE by wearing red and/or a chalice. Take it a step further and post a “selfie” on social media with the tag #DOCWeAreOne.
Early registration discounts expire April 1, so register today for a 20 percent savings at http://disciples.org/ga
are to hold them to. Based on Paul Schlieker’s Bible study on Proverbs at http://www.bible-study-lesson-plans.com/characteristics-of-a-good-leader.html his “10 Characteristics of a Good Leader” has been adapted.
Characteristic #6: Awareness of their Influence
Proverbs 29:2 – When the righteous thrive, people rejoice; when the wicked rule, people groan.
In almost every era, no country has been able to rise above its leaders. For better or worse, people become like those they follow. Leaders set the standard for those who follow them. Do they inspire the best or worst in others?
Characteristic #7: Compassion for the Suffering
Proverbs 29:14 – If a king judges the poor with fairness, his throne will always be secure.
Jesus is the ultimate model of taking time for the poor, outcast, and children. He was naturally drawn to the weak who needed an advocate. James teaches us that pure religion is to look after orphans and widows in their distress.
Characteristic #8: Reflects God’s Character
Proverbs 25:4,5 – Remove the dross from silver and out comes material for the silversmith; remove the wicked from the king’s presence, and his throne will be established through righteousness. Proverbs 20:8 – When a king sits on his throne to judge, he winnows out all evil with his eyes.
Wickedness and evil are abhorrent and repellent to good leaders. Good leaders have been refined and winnowed so their character reflects more of God and less of the dross and chaff of this world. They understand their exercise of power is a reflection upon the character of God.
Characteristic #9: Seeks and Speaks the Truth
Proverbs 25:2 – It is the glory of God to conceal things, but the glory of kings is to search things out.
Proverbs 17:7 – Fine speech is not becoming to a fool; still less is false speech to a ruler.
Good leaders are aware of their limitations, and seek knowledge, wisdom, and truth. Fools are not aware of their ignorance, while the wise are constantly learning. Good leaders know the difference between opinion and fact, and seek after and speak the truth.
Characteristic #10: Submission to God
Proverbs 21:1 – A king’s heart is in the hand of the Lord; he directs it like a water course wherever he pleases.
This is the most important characteristic of a good leader. When a man or woman is submissive to God and the Holy Spirit, God will direct that person into the ways that glorify God the best.
REGIONAL WEB SITES
You can learn more about each regional ministry by visiting their web site: