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From The Pastor...

Dear Friends in Christ....   

“For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone
who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16 NLT

Dear Friends in Christ,
World Communion Sunday is Sunday, October 1st. World Communion Sunday is a
day when Christians around the world gather the first Sunday in October at the
Lord's table.

Christians like us will gather in churches just like our own in communities just like ours. Others will gather in huge cathedrals or in open-country churches. Other Christians will gather in mud-thatched sheds or in a lean-to to celebrate together with others all around the world. People in some places of our world today will
gather in secret because to worship as a Christian is a violation of the law and punishable by imprisonment
and in some cases even death. Yet...the Lord Jesus Christ invites to his table of grace ALL who claim his
promises of eternal life and who serve him as his disciples and proclaim his Gospel of love to a hurting

“The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands.” --Psalm 19:1
Here the psalmist glorifies and praises God in the opening verse of this amazing psalm. We read these few
words and can imagine him looking up into the night sky and seeing literally uncountable stars and a glowing
full moon. I can also picture him in awe of the vast variety of animals and vegetation all around him, from
the tiniest of creatures to the mightiest of trees.

Yet, the real glory of God and the marvel of God's handiwork I believe are in the incredible variety of
people God has created. How can we not marvel at the shapes and sizes, the colors and sounds, and the
talents and attributes that our creator God has loving created into the people near and far that God has
fashioned and breathed life into? As I think of the diversity of our world, our country, our community, and
our church, I believe our lives have been enriched beyond comprehension. Yes, indeed, the heavens and
the sky proclaim God's handiwork, but God's people of every race and color, language and culture, location
and tradition, are the ultimate proclamation of God's handiwork.

In the midst of the beauty of all this diversity, the news reminds us nearly every day that the world
struggles for community and emphasizes our differences. Sadly, the world names others as outcasts,
unloved, and unacceptable and is always adding to its list of enemies. It's in this world that Christians in
every corner come together on World Communion Sunday to share the bread and cup with one another
in the expectation of the Kingdom of God and of the great banquet in which ALL believers will participate.
We look to the time in God's Kingdom when there will truly be no outcasts, none who are considered
unlovable, none who are unacceptable, none who are any longer our enemies. We look to the time in
God's Kingdom when our differences no longer divide us but when our diversity is celebrated as a precious
and amazing gift from God. When we participate in World Communion Sunday, we as Christians are
proclaiming to the whole world not only Christ's reality in the future but God's Kingdom reigning on earth
here and now.

“As we gather around the table that Jesus prepared for his disciples so long ago and for us today, and as we
enter into communion with Christ, and ALL who belong to Christ, the divisions among us fall away and
hearts are opened to one another in unity. As we enter the pure presence of Christ and experience God's
love for us anew through Christ, we are reconciled to God and to one another. In other words, as we
receive the bread and cup we proclaim the power of God's love in Christ to reconcile ALL believers and
bring renewal to our faith and healing to relationships.” (--Rev. Fran Lane-Lawrence)

On October 1st as we gather to worship, I invite you to join in this wonderful celebration of the Lord's
Supper as together the church, the body of Christ, all over this magnificent and diverse earth, proclaims
Christ's death until he comes again in glory and we are ONE with him and each other. Yes, indeed, the
heavens and the sky proclaim God's handiwork, and on World Communion Sunday we proclaim with them
and each other God's handiwork and unity in Christ his Son! Thanks be to God!

Yours in Christ, with blessings,

Pastor Terry

(From the “Africana Worship Book, Year B”)
Jesus prayed that we might be one. One in spirit. One in mission, in union and communion with
each other and with You.

Today, God, we confess fumblings and failures in accomplishing unity, as we set aside yet another day
to remind ourselves of the task. On this World Communion Sunday, give us eyes to recognize your
reflection in the eyes of Christians everywhere. Give us a mind to accept and celebrate our
differences. Give us a heart big enough to love your children everywhere.
We thank you for setting a table with space enough for us all! Amen.

One of six denomination-wide special offerings, there will be a special offering envelop in the bulletin
Sunday, October 1st for your use. Your generous gifts to World Communion Sunday fund graduate
racial-ethnic World Communion Scholarships, with at least one-half of the annual amount reserved for
ministries beyond the United States. Donations also provide for undergraduate U.S. Ethnic Scholarship
and Ethnic In-Service Training programs.

“My desire is to sow seeds into the lives of others, hoping that at least one will also be inspired to sow
a seed into another individual.” --Lena Kuffuor-Afriyie, Ethnic Scholarship recipient


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