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Director of CE & Youth Programs – July 2020

Director of Christian Education and Youth Programs -- Amy Grella —

Love is (Still) the Answer I must confess that I have never been a regular news watcher. I like to keep myself informed just enough to be aware of topics that may surface in conversations. There have been so many events that have rocked our nation in the last month--from the horror of the George Floyd murder, to the outcry for social justice and reform, to states re-opening, all while tracking the pandemic that continues to claim lives every day. Even the small amount of time I dedicate to the news has left me feeling depleted. Then the lyrics from “Love is Still The Answer,” a song by Jason Mraz, reminds me of a simple truth: The question is why, why are we here?

To say our hello's and goodbye's and then disappear.

This beautiful life, what is it for?

To learn how to master peace or master war.

There's only one answer that matters,

Even if your heart has been shattered,

Whatever you want, whatever you are after,

Love is still the answer,

Love is still the answer. Jesus also lived in tumultuous times and faced challenging questions. In Matthew’s Gospel account, the disciple records one such occasion: “Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together. One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question: ‘Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?’ Jesus replied: ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself. All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.’” (Matthew 22:34-40, NIV) Jesus summarized all the commandments in just two statements: love God and love others. How much better would our world be if we simplified our approach and truly LIVED these statements? With every news story we hear, decision we face, need we pursue, or conversation we have, may our lives demonstrate a commitment to love God supremely and love others selflessly. Coming Soon: Backyard Mini-Camps The CE Committee is working on plans to mobilize a shorter format of our day camp / junior day camp. The idea is to have church families host a small gathering of kids (your own “tribe” you may now be allowing your children to play with) in your very own backyard. The one-time meetup would be set based on the age of participants but would not exceed 1-2 hours. We will come to you with a set program to include a Bible topic or lesson, craft, and response time activities. Our thinking is that by having families control the location and the attendees, it may increase the comfort level in participating. More details will be shared via email to families in the weeks to come. Summer Storytime During the summer months, we continue to share children’s stories read by congregation members. This has been a nice change for kids to hear and see familiar faces from our congregation! If you are interested in helping out, please sign your name and provide your contact info on the document link here. Amy will contact you to coordinate the details. The best thing about being digital is that these recordings can be done at any time and released as needed. So while the link has dates listed to help us coordinate the content releases, it doesn’t necessarily need to be recorded that week. You can now find all previous Children’s Worship videos and files on the church website. Save this link so you can get to it easily. Files are added each week, so check back often for the newest content.

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