Homecoming Update 2015

11923209_157833931219402_8563821057233421273_nAn Update at Homecoming!

We are thrilled that you are here, and we are so grateful for what God has been doing in our midst since we last gathered for worship and celebration last August.

The work and effectiveness of God through Christ in the Holy Spirit cannot, of course, be quantified, but we want to share with you a bit of what we have been experiencing in our fellowship and some of the areas God has strengthened us.

God has…

1. …Continued to grow our worshipping community! We are so thankful for new friends who already feel like old friends, and for the hope that accompanies a growing church family. We can’t wait to see how God will continue to use us to reach Newland and Avery County with the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

2. …Allowed us to participate in and witness three baptisms and two confirmations, a sure sign of the Holy Spirit’s presence and power among us! We are thankful for John Henry Adams, Mason Winters, Madison Harris, and Lily McKee.

3. …Blessed us with a beautiful church building and grounds, which we continue to care for diligently. We now have a nursery, newly painted classrooms, entryways, and updates planned for the Kingdom Kids Daycare downstairs.

4. …Provided a good start on our parking lot fund. We are approximately halfway towards our goal of $22,000 – the amount needed to tear out and repave the parking band that borders the church. We are thankful for the Lord’s provision.

5. …Deepened our fellowship! Weekly gatherings have allowed us to focus on our growth in the Spirit of Jesus. Discipleship groups, Prayer gatherings, Service days, and Fellowship opportunities have punctuated our common life since April, and we look forward to continuing to offer ourselves to the Lord in tangible ways.

6. …Aided us as we completed our Year of Devotion to the Holy Scriptures, which saw many of us read the Bible cover to cover, and the rest of us traverse the Scriptures from Genesis-Revelation during Sunday worship.

7. …Brought new life into our church…literally! Lily McKee was born March 16 of this year and she is really working on her communication skills. We’ve noticed that her favorite time to practice is during her father’s sermons! We also rejoice at the birth of Lachlan Samuel Ray to Christy and Lindsay!

8. …Brought people together! We celebrate the recent marriage of Matt and Meredith Pitman, and remain ever grateful for the love God has given them for one another. They are a huge blessing.

9. …Led us beyond these doors. Through partnerships with Ram’s Rack we have provided food and electricity to families in need. Through partnerships with Avery County Schools and area Presbyterian Churches we have provided school supplies to every middle school student in the county who can’t afford their own. We have arranged spaghetti dinners to fund field trips for 8th graders and fed our neighbors with regular meals at Linville Cove Apartments. We’ve helped out local businesses by taking our big appetites with us for monthly suppers out (usually 30-40 go together!), and we completed work on a Habitat for Humanity house near Hump Mountain that has now become home to a family of 4. Last month we took a group of 19 to the National Whitewater Rafting Center near Charlotte, NC. We came home with sunburns, soggy shoes, and full hearts. We hope to bike the VA Creeper trail this fall. We are discovering where and how Jesus is moving all around us, and doing our best to get in on his mission.

10. …Made us very thankful. So much life has been happening here, and we are so very thankful for God’s presence in our hearts and in our midst. As our church continues along this time of transition we cling to the One who is the same yesterday, today, and forever, and we humbly ask that you would continue to lift up our small and courageous community of Christ-followers as we discover what he has in store for us next.

May God bless you this day and always!

(And should you wish to participate in any or all of the things that God is doing here, don’t hesitate, all you’ve got to do is jump in!)

In Christ,

Michael & Your Friends at Newland Presbyterian Church