Fill the Goodwill Trailer at Redeemer

 

Our church is richly blessed through our relationship with Family Affair Ministries (FAM). What a great time we had on Sunday! Pastor Glenda's message, along with the great offertory and the special singers on our worship team ... it was a blessing to worship together. Special thanks to everyone who helped with the lunch after church.

FAM does a great deal of good for people in their neighborhood. One way they do this is by giving out Goodwill gift cards. These cards help supply clothing and other necessities. Goodwill and FAM have a special partnership. Goodwill gives FAM giftcards based on donated goods that FAM sends to Goodwill.

Here's what that means for us: There will be a trailer in Redeemer's parking lot from Sunday, June 18 through Friday, June 23. Our challenge is to fill that trailer up. Bring clothing, housewares, books, toys, electronics, and sporting goods. Put them in the trailer. Then Goodwill will award FAM gift cards based on the weight of what we collect!

So don't throw that working toaster away! Don't take those clothes to Goodwill! Don't take that box of books to McKay's! Save them up for just ten more days, and then bring it to the church. Your donation will bless the folks who end up buying the item at Goodwill AND our friends at FAM. It's a win-win!

Do Something Good This Summer

A few months ago, I spent about a week with Faith Church in Cap-Haitien, Haiti. I was introduced to that church by an old friend, and founding member of my congregation (Church of the Redeemer), Mike VanHook. 

Some of you have heard me speak about my time in Haiti. I was overwhelmed by the crushing poverty of the country. I was also impressed by the godly work of Faith Church, and other ministries associated with them. I was especially impressed with Pastor Bruno. While I've only spent a few days with him, Mike has walked with him for fifteen years. Bruno is a man of passion and character. One thing I especially appreciate about him is how deeply committed he is to transparency and accountability. I have often found this to be a real issue when dealing with ministries in very poor environments. 

A few weeks ago, Pastor Bruno was in Nashville. He, Laura, and I had lunch together. As I was driving us to lunch, I asked Bruno how Laura and I could help his ministry. He told me about three things that were pressing needs. 

While I was considering these needs myself, I also decided to bring them up to our Mission and Outreach Committee. You may not know this, but Church of the Redeemer sets aside 10% of our income for mission and outreach. This committee helps to assign those funds. 

The committee decided to act on the needs I presented. But they also wanted to offer folks an opportunity to participate as well. The Vestry agreed, and decided that we should open a special designated fund just for June and July. During these two months, you can contribute towards three specific needs at Faith Church, if you wish. We will then transfer the funds to Faith Church, and we will receive reports on how they are used. 

Here are those three needs: Scholarships, Teachers, and the Construction of the Sanctuary. As a special act of worship this summer, I invite you to join me in giving (even a very small amount) to the work of Faith Church.

Scholarships

One-third of Haitian children do not go to school. That's because almost all available schools are private. Since the majority of Haitians live on less than two dollars a day, you can see where paying for school would be a real problem.

Faith Church has established Faith School for the children in their impoverished area. 120 children now attend, but more could go if they had the money.

I asked Bruno how much it would cost to sponsor a child for a year of school. He told me that $250 would cover school, books, uniform, and lunch (when the school could afford lunch). That's for the entire year.

Redeemer will be sponsoring four children to go to Faith School this coming year. You can sponsor a child, also. If you would like to do so, give $250 to Redeemer, and indicate "Haiti Scholarship." Bruno will send us the names and pictures of the children that we sponsor. 

Teachers

I asked Pastor Bruno how much he pays the teachers at Faith School. He told me "$90 a month, when we can pay them. And we don't pay them during the summer." 

That's a full-time salary of about $3 a day, when the salary comes through. Given how critical teachers are to a school, Redeemer has decided to give $900 to pay for one teacher for the upcoming school-year. If you'd like to help provide a teacher for Faith School this year, give any amount to Redeemer, and indicate "Haiti Teachers.

Sanctuary

To the right, you'll see a picture of Faith Church's sanctuary. Approximately 250 people worship there on Sundays, many standing outside. Bruno has plans drawn up to build a large, sturdy, cinderblock sanctuary. He can get it built for $10,000. 

Redeemer is giving $1,000 toward the building of the new sanctuary. You can pitch in, if you'd like. Just give any amount to Redeemer, and indicate "Haiti Sanctuary." Bruno will keep careful track of the expenditures, and we'll receive reports on the progress.

How to Give

If you'd like to give to any of these three needs, you can bring/mail a check to Redeemer. 920 Caldwell Lane, Nashville, 37204. You can also use our on-line giving by going here: https://portal.icheckgateway.com/ChurchOfTheRedeemer/
Please remember to indicate in the MEMO LINE where you'd like the funds to go. Haiti Scholarships, Haiti Sanctuary, or Haiti Teachers.

Summer at Redeemer

Dear Church,

We’re less than a week away from Memorial Day, the unofficial start of summer. Kids are getting out of school, graduations are happening, and the weather is definitely getting warmer. In summer, Nashville seems to slow down a bit. The swimming pools are open, the big blockbusters are in theaters, and the days are long and hot. 

Church of the Redeemer slows down for the summer, too. This is both cultural and intentional. Cultural, because that’s what churches in the South seem to do, at least in my experience. But we’re also intentional. Sabbath rest is not “just” a commandment of God, it’s also a helpful pattern of living. If we don’t have seasons of rest, we find that seasons of activity become more and more demanding, and less and less fulfilling. 

June 4th is Pentecost Sunday, in many ways the climax of the Church Calendar. On that day we are offering baptism (please contact me if interested!), Family Affair Ministries will join us, and Pastor Glenda Sutton is preaching. It will be a wonderful day. It will also be our last day of Sunday school until August. 

During the summer, the Women’s Ministry will be offering Connections on Thursday mornings. Otherwise, there won’t be any midweek programs. On Sundays, there will be childcare for the little ones, but youth and children will be with us in worship. Of course, pastoral care is always available for those who are sick, in a crisis, or in need of spiritual support and direction. Music, preaching, and all the other aspects of Sunday liturgy continue as always. 

Summer does bring different opportunities. Here are some things going on:

Summer Picnics

On Sunday evening, June 11, I’m inviting anyone who wants to join me for a picnic. We’ll be at our church playground, beginning at 6 pm. No agenda, just a time to hang out. I’ll be bringing my grill from home and making burgers. Bring whatever you want, bring your kids/friends/whomever. We’ll just have a beer and watch the kids play.

Neighborhood Picnics

Summer is a great time to have a picnic/bar-b-que at your house. Invite folks in your neighborhood. You’ll be surprised how many folks would love to come to something that simple. To encourage you to do this, I’ll give Kroger gift cards to anyone in the church who will use them to throw a little party for their neighbors. Seriously. Just tell me on Sunday you’re doing it, and I’ll give you one.

Summer Devotions

Just because things are laid back doesn’t mean that the discipline or regular prayer and Bible meditation goes away. So, to encourage our devotional life, I’ll be e-mailing daily devotions out to the church throughout the summer. If you are not on our e-mail list, please tell the church office.

Mission Giving

We have a great opportunity to help some desperately poor Christians in Haiti this summer. I’m going to send a separate message about that, but you’ll see that shortly.

Creation Care Camp

Registration for “Wild Wonder” (Creation Care Camp) is now open at www.tinyurl.com/wildwonder2017. Through daily devotions in scripture, nature study and exploration, and hands-on science activities, the camp weaves wonder of the natural world into a deeper knowledge of Jesus and the created world. Camp is open to rising Kindergarteners through rising 4th graders and will be held June 12th - June 16th at Church of the Redeemer from 9am to noon each day. Please register each child separately. When you register your child, there is an option to volunteer at camp. More info for volunteers will follow. If you do not have a child at camp but would still like to volunteer, please email Flo Oakes at flo.oakes@arocha.org.

Youth Summer Pool Party on May 31

Bring yourself and all your friends to our pool party to kickoff the summer! Students entering 7th grade this fall through graduating seniors are invited to attend. We will have pool games, yard games, a hot tub and a cook out. The pool party will be on Wednesday, May 31st at the Sells home (5146 Stanford Dr) starting at 5pm and ending by 8pm. Questions? Contact Johnmark (johnmark@redeemernashville.net or 630-779-4240). Look for other Summer youth events, too.

Redeemer Men's Summer Brewery Fellowship

One Saturday each month this summer, Redeemer men will be meeting at a local brewery for prayer, loosely guided discussion, fellowship and to sample some beer. Please join us as we grow closer to old friends and take the opportunity to make new ones. The breweries don't all serve food so please have lunch before coming. We will meet at 1:00 and wrap up at 3:00. Our first gathering is Saturday, May 27th from 1-3pm at Southern Grist Brewing. Join us!

Women’s Arrington Trip

Women of Redeemer are meeting at Arrington Vineyards Saturday, June 17th at 6 pm. We will meet at the vineyard.  Come sip some wine under the stars, listen to jazz, and spend some time with friends. Bring something delicious, savory or sweet, to share.  When you arrive and park at Arrington look for familiar faces around the picnic table area or call/text Esther Ehmann to find the our location: 802-989-0834.

 

Why We Now Accept On-Line Giving

You can now give to Redeemer on-line

From Fr. Thomas

Giving financially to your church is not "normal." I say that because it's more than just supporting a favorite non-profit. It's an act of worship, as well as an investment in your own spiritual community.

Anglicans take giving so seriously that we do it as part of our worship. Each Sunday, we have a special time called the "offertory." At the end of it, we place our gifts on the altar. There we make our sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving, while also remembering the sacrifice that Christ made once and for all. The collection plates are up on the table, along with the bread and the wine. Why? Because the money that you give represents your work, and it is one of the main ways that you sacrificially give back to God.

Because of the liturgical importance of this sacrifice, we've been very slow to receive giving in other ways. For many years our church has not made it easy to give, unless you do it through check/cash in worship (though we have other ways, including direct giving from checking accounts and transfer of stock). 

This has created a problem, though. More and more people don't use checks at all. The younger you are, the more likely that you don't use checks, or carry cash. You may well do all of your banking on-line. For some people, even using a credit or debit card is becoming outdated with the rise of all the phone apps through which we can give and receive money. 

The end result of this societal transformation has been that there are members of Redeemer who are effectively prevented from giving to our church. It's almost like we're saying that their giving isn't important. In reality, everyone's giving is important. Of course giving is important to the church herself. After all, we utilize those gifts in the funding of all of our ministries. But giving is even more important to the giver (2 Corinthians 9). 

For these reasons, Church of the Redeemer now accepts giving via credit or debit card on-line. You can also set up a recurring gift if you'd like. Entirely up to you. Simply go to https://portal.icheckgateway.com/ChurchOfTheRedeemer 
We have made every effort to find a secure and responsible way of receiving your giving. 

Giving financially and sacrificially to your church is an act of worship. We hope that this system helps facilitate that aspect of discipleship in your own life.

Easter Blessings,

Thomas+

Our Incoming Children's Pastor

After an extensive period of discernment, Fr. Thomas (with the unanimous affirmation of the Vestry), has asked Mary Cady Bolin to serve as our next Children's Pastor. As with Grace Spriggs before her, Mary Cady will continue to develop our Godly Play ministry, as well as other discipleship opportunities for kids and their families. 

Mary Cady currently serves as the Bible teacher at the Oak Hill School, and she's also the chaplain of a Christian summer camp for girls. She will officially join us on July 1st, though you'll see her and her family worshiping with us from Easter Sunday on. Let's all welcome the Bolin family, and pray for God's grace and blessing as they take this new step in their life and ministry. 

Rebekka Seale will continue serving as interim Children's Pastor until Mary Cady comes on board. We're grateful for her years of volunteering, and the good work she's doing for us in this time of transition. 

Mary Cady Bolin ("Cady" pro-nounced like "Katie") grew up on Lookout Mountain, just outside Chattanooga, and she has never found a reason to live anywhere other than her beloved Tennessee. In 2001 she moved to Nashville to attend Vanderbilt University where she received a BA in Religious Studies and Art History. She later studied at Vanderbilt Divinity School where she gained her Masters of Divinity.

In the years since college Mary Cady has worked with children in clinical, recreational, academic and church settings and has loved every minute of meeting children and their families where they are- in joy, in grief, in celebration, and in growth. Mary Cady’s passion for sharing the gospel with children has led her back to her childhood camp, Camp DeSoto, where she serves every summer as Camp Pastor to 300 girls from all over the south.

Mary Cady and her husband, Brian, have two daughters: Caroline (12) and Harper (6). They also have a delightful yellow lab named Dixie with whom Mary Cady shares a daily morning run. In addition to running, Mary Cady enjoys baking, reading, and anything that involves being outside. She has weaknesses for country music, anything monogrammed, and sweet tea.