News And Updates

2-22-21 Update Letter #52 from Pastor Nate Phillips

by Pastor Nate Phillips on February 22, 2021

February 22, 2021
Dear Kirk family,
It was quite a weekend in the life of our church!
We were joined by Pastor Edwin as he participated in his “introductory weekend” and kicked off Lent and our “In Good Hands” sermon series. In his sermon, he told a story about his niece who was scared of monsters. Through that story, he painted a vision for mission and outreach at the Kirk by giving us her four word prayer - a prayer that might be handy for us in these times.
“Jesus, make me brave.”
He went on,
“You and I know deep down inside, that monsters exist. But Easter is about the defeat of monsters. God is bigger than dragons. All we are called to do is to be brave enough to hold fast.”
If you would like to offer greetings to Pastor Edwin and share with him about his sermon, check in at the sermon “talk back” tonight on Zoom click here.
Note: If you are prompted to enter a passcode, it’s “Kirk” with capital K.
The entire worship service was beautiful, especially as Pastor Edwin’s wife, Merideth, joined her oboe to Kirk member Amy Tully’s flute for a variety of pieces. Their rendition of “He Leadeth Me,” our closing hymn, especially touched my heart. 
Worship can help make us brave.
If you would like to join our “in person” worship at 8 or 10 a.m. this Sunday, please register here. Of course, you can also join us online at 9 a.m. (pre-recorded), 10 a.m. (livestream), and 11 a.m. (radio). Our brand new Children’s Church is led by children and designed for children and can be found at anytime on the children’s page on our church website.
Our musical moments provide a worshipful end to every Sunday. Last night Nicole Joseph and Alvin Waddles shared an inspiring program of music from the Gospel and Contemporary Christian traditions, I encourage you to go to the website and enjoy that concert at your leisure, here. This Sunday evening’s Musical Moment will be led by Nicole Joseph and Glenn Miller and you can join us for the singing of favorite hymns. The Zoom link for this event will be provided in Friday’s congregational announcements. 
We have also added another worship option for Wednesdays throughout Lent. We will host a twenty minute noonday prayer service that will be open to all with the option to attend in person by registration and online. Register here.
It won’t be long before we start seeing our children’s choirs in worship too! Kirk Choir Boys and the Intermediate and Senior Girls’ Choir recorded selections this past week for Children’s Church and for the prerecorded Sanctuary service.
Christian formation can help make us brave.
So, pick up a Lent in a Box today! It has weekly family Lenten devotions, crafts and so much more to make this Lent meaningful for your family!
Or, join us on Sundays at 12:15 p.m.! Last Sunday, Tracee Glab led a wonderful class on God’s creative hands and, this Sunday, Dr. Merideth Hite Estevez will join us to explore how creativity reminds us of our belovedness and brings us closer to our Maker. In this interactive workshop, we’ll discuss what the Scriptures have to say about our Artist-God, tap into our innately creative spirit, and dive into how creation and appreciation of art are powerful tools for spiritual discovery. No prior artistic experience or background necessary! Click here for more details!
Or connect with Pastor Kelsey for youth ministry! On Saturday, Pastor Kelsey led an intergenerational group of volunteers in making dinners for 75 Lighthouse homeless guests currently staying at a hotel in Pontiac. And then passing out the meals from the Kirk van and meeting the guests was a real highlight!
Serving together can help make us brave.
I think that Julie Walker and the Outreach and Mission committee are brave for setting such a bold goal for our Lenten food drive. They are hoping to fill 40 boxes of food in the 40 days of Lent. This will take an effort from all of us! Learn more in this video.

On Thursday night, Accent Pontiac students welcomed Pastor Edwin and Merideth Estevez to music programming at the Kirk last week. Pastor Edwin jammed with students in their drum circle and Merideth introduced students to the oboe! We are excited for all the possibilities for future collaboration as Pastor Edwin and Merideth join the Kirk and Accent Pontiac families.

Then, on Friday through Sunday, we hosted “Walk in Love” weekend - a service and outreach effort bravely initiated by Jim and Amy Tully in memory of their late daughter, Carradine.

As you can see from the pictures, it was the perfect weekend for Pastor Edwin to come and be introduced to our congregation - and how we are made brave through service. We prepared and served food to the Lighthouse homeless guests staying at a hotel out in Pontiac, and Hope Adult Shelter, the Baldwin Center and Micah 6.

We helped move furniture in and out at two of our Kirk Tutor family houses, and also participated in our Foster Care Mentorship Seminar which was recorded and will be available for viewing on our website for anyone who missed it.

I believe that Jesus is making this congregation brave.  
As we approach our 75th anniversary in 2022, we will be looking to engage the congregation in a campaign to help establish our legacy and set the direction for our next 25 years. Next week you will be receiving an email from me with a preliminary background statement and an invitation for you to participate in our feasibility study which will help us determine the direction of that campaign. Let’s be brave together!
Pastor Edwin closed his sermon by saying,
“We face the world … 
but we do so as the brave people of God, trusting in the promise of God that God will hold us fast.
So, friends, hold fast. 
In the name of Christ. Amen.”
May it be that God’s hands, holding you fast, will give you all the courage you need for today.
Stay warm,
Pastor Nate

Tags: email, weekly update, letter, pastor nate


Previous Page