Hello friends and family in Christ
This coming Sunday is Christian Family Sunday.
It feels like a strange sort of thing to celebrate lined up with Mothers’ Day, but it does give us a different way to think about who we are as a church.
When I say Christian Family Sunday I don’t mean a Sunday for families (or households) who are Christian, I mean a Sunday for our whole Christian family. As a church, we are called to be like relatives for each other in the best way possible. We are each other’s siblings, grandparents, aunties and nephews, supporting each other and cheering each other on.
I grew up in the church, as I know many of you did. Do you remember the church family of your childhood? Were they a good, loving supportive family, or were they a bit (or a lot) dysfunctional?
I remember how the ladies of the church looked after me and fussed over me as a small child like having a crowd of loving grandmas and aunties all around. I couldn’t name them, yet there they were making sure I always got my cup of juice after church. A cloud of family and friends.
This week our scripture is a part of how Jesus says goodbye to his disciples. A challenging one for me at this time, but I feel like I want to tell all of you the same sorts of things as Jesus tells his disciples. He keeps telling them over and over again to love one another, and then he promises them that they will not be alone, another helper is being sent to them.
The other helper who is sent to the first Christians is sent to us as well, the Holy Spirit. It’s hard to figure out how to say in English what John says in Greek that Jesus said. Paraclete – like the bird with an extra L. The word means both advocate and comforter. (John 14:15-21.)
When I hear Comforter, that brings me back to my church ladies – and their quilts. In the many ways we come together and create communities of love and support, the quilting and scrapbooking, the coffee chats and community groups we are a part of, whether or not they are a part of any ‘church’, we are building Jesus’ dream of communities held together by love.
An advocate and comforter – One of the first of these that many of us meet who fits that description is a mother – our own or someone else’s. May we all be a source of love, support and advocacy for each other.
Our other scripture will come from the book of Acts as Paul helps the Athenians to see how God has been with them, around and between them without them even knowing it. God is the one in whom we live and move and have our being. Acts 17:22-31
The children will be presenting flowers to the women of the church.
If you wonder how my family manages Mother’s and Father’s day – Jen gets Mother’s Day, I get Father’s day.
(Rev) Eli Carter-Morgan (they/them)
Spirit West United Church
Proud to share the land through Treaty 6
CONGREGATIONAL MEETING - Sunday, May 28 – The church board met this past Wednesday and discussed the very serious concerns about our congregation’s future. The reality is that our financial position requires that we need to make some difficult decisions. The board is finalizing some options to bring before you at our congregational meeting on the 28th of May. There will be more information in the 18th of May email message as well as the announcements next Sunday
Come, help us MAKE A JOYFUL NOISE at 7:00 on Friday, June 2! HarpBeat Plus One (5 harps and 1 flute) will be joining the Spirit West Choir to present an evening of joyful music for your pleasure! Be sure to bring a friend — invite them to enjoy vocal and instrumental music presented within the warm and welcoming faith community here at Spirit West. Donations will be accepted to assist the ministry of Spirit West — suggested minimum donation per adult is $15.00. Donations $20.00 or more will be given a tax receipt.
HANGING BASKETS – we are going to have blossoms beautifying the front porch of the church again this summer. This is a wonderful place for plants to grow. However, they do need to be watered. We are hoping that someone will consider giving them a good drink once or twice a week, depending on the weather. If you could do this, please call or email Norma at the church office
GUESS WHO’S COMING TO DINNER? – Join us in using cunning stealth and covert organization, to surprise our phenomenal Spirit West chefs. Only at the ring of their doorbell, should they discover who will join them for dinner on their chosen night of gastronomical delights!! This fund-raiser for the church will take place in the next few months! It is a terrific time to enjoy a fabulous meal and fellowship. Those who wish to host a dinner are asked to contact Bill C 780-481-2662 or Sheila H at 780-960-3878 or signup at the church. Hosts need to indicate the dates and times of their dinners and the number of guests they will be hosting. If there is a theme for the evening, this should also be provided. Guests will have the opportunity to select where they will dine and to provide any dietary restrictions to the conveners (who will secretly pass on the information to the hosts). A free will offering, in envelopes, will be collected by the host. A minimum offering of $25.00 per person is suggested. Please plan on attending one of these sensational evening parties and generously supporting our church.
MEN’S BREAKFAST, 8:30 AM. Sat, May 20
Gather with other men of the congregation in the Lower Hall for fellowship and a breakfast of pancakes, sausages and eggs. Come a few minutes early and help cook if you would like. All men welcome!
LADIES’ GROUP POTLUCK SUPPER – 5:30pm, June 6 at Marg H’s house. A signup sheet is available at the back or email the office and I will sign you up!
- with suggestions for the potluck
- with the address
EVENTS Happening in the CHURCH – May 15-22
- Mon, May 15, 6-8:30pm – Embers
- Tues, May 16, 7-9pm – Shores AGM
- Tues, May 16, 9-10pm – set up for Church of Christ service
- Wed, May 17, 6-9pm – Church of Christ service
- Thurs, May 18, 7-8:30pm – choir practice
- Fri, May 19, 6-7pm – set up for Church of Christ service
- Sat, May 20, 7am - noon – Church of Christ service
- Sat, May 20, 8:30-10am – Men’s breakfast
- Sun, May 21, 10:30 am – our service led by David Faber
- Sun, May 21, 1-3pm – Soul Harvesters Ministries service
- Mon, May 22 – office closed all day
LEADERS for May 14
- Hospitality Team – Ludlow – Diane L, Norma, Carol & Bruce S
- Scripture Reader – Diane L
- Projectionist – Bruce C
LEADERS for May 21
- Hospitality Team – Doyle – Don & Daphne, Cathy & David, Tony
- Scripture Reader – Rhea O
- Projectionist – Rebecca W
LEADERS for May 28
- Hospitality Team – Hemmerling – Georgina, Doreen, Rhea, Glenna
- Scripture Reader – Paul F
- Projectionist – Terri-Lynn & Sara
DATES TO REMEMBER:
- Men’s Breakfast – 8:30am, Sat May 13
- Congregational Meeting – after worship, Sun, May 28
- Make a Joyful Noise concert – 7pm, Fri, June 2
- Ladies Group Potluck Supper – June 6
- Church School Picnic – June 11
- An invitation to Edmonton and Area UCs (clergy and lay) to gather, to share, around the health and viability of their Community of Faith. May 27th at McDougall UC, 10 am-2pm. Come have conversation about resources, both people and money, leadership, administration and… What consumes your energy now? What is happening with leadership both clergy and lay? Are there ways we can share resources, both human and otherwise around the tasks of work we all need to do? and then “What’s Next?” Bring your own lunch. Coffee, tea, snacks and parking will be provided. RSVP to McDougall UC 780-428-1818 or finance@McDougallUnited.com by May 19th.
- Older, Bolder, BetterTM Seniors Exhibition & Symposium, Thursday, June 8, Westend Seniors Activity Centre, 9629 176 st, Edmonton. Entertainment by Bob Layton
- St. Stephen's College Fundraising Gala - Friday, June 16, 5-10pm, JW Marriott Ice District - 10344 102 St NW, Edmonton. Featuring live painting by Giselle Denis, live entertainment, guest speakers & silent auction - $250 per person, or $2000 per table of 8. A deductible charitable tax receipt will be issued for a portion of the ticket price after the event
- Community & Connection – 2SLGBTQ1A+ and Advocacy Conference, June 22-24, Robertson-Wesley UC, 10209-123 St. Bringing together those who do work in the 2SLGBTQIA+ community to share their challenges and experiences with each other and the greater community. More information at www.communityandconnection.com
SPIRIT WEST PRAYER CHAIN
Prayer is important. We know that people face challenges and difficulties and we cannot forget them. Our Prayer Chain continues to be active. If you have a prayer request, please send it to email@example.com. These requests will be shared regularly with the prayer chain and may form part of the Prayers of the People in our Sunday Worship.
Please remember to have people removed from the prayer chain if the prayers are no longer needed.
YOUR BOTTLES FOR THE CHURCH
You may have bottles piling up for recycling. You can bring them to the church (or you can call for pick up). If you want to bring your bottles (and any other recyclable beverage containers) in during our office hours and put them directly in the Bottle Shed (by the garage), give us a call, and we can have the shed open for you. All money raised from the return of bottles goes towards paying down the principal and interest on our mortgage.
- PAR - Pre-Authorized Remittance is a direct debit program run by the United Church of Canada. It allows people to support their church through an automatic monthly withdrawal from their bank account. It follows the giver's wishes (give to local, M&S, etc.). If you wish to go on PAR, please the fill out the form on the literature carousel and give the form and a cheque marked “void” to the church office. We will do the rest! If you wish to change your PAR amount, contact the office and we will make the change for you.
- We can accept donations by eTransfer. The contact name for the eTransfer is Spirit West United Church, and the email address is firstname.lastname@example.org . If you include a security question with your eTransfer, please notify Norma at the church office by phone or email of the answer.
- And remember that if you are not on PAR(Pre-Authorized Remittance) or even if you are , you can mail in cheques to the church office (Spirit West United Church, 7003 – 199 St. NW Edmonton, AB T5T 3A8, include your envelope number if you have one.)
- You can drop off your offering/donation in the offering plate just inside the front doors or place it in the mailbox.
- You can also donate online by checking out the online donation option on our website spiritwest.org and click on the Donate tab in the navigation bar.
SPIRIT WEST ONLINE!
Facebook: Spirit West United Church and Friends of Spirit West Outreach
YouTube: Spirt West United Church, Edmonton
Spirit West United Church
7003 - 199st.NW Edmonton, AB T5T 3A8
phone: (780) 481-1406