A monthly publication of the life of our church.
Download the current Newsette in Adobe pdf format.
This past week I encountered one of those signs that fall has arrived, and it wasn’t just the cool weather and rain. (Although I’m grateful!) This past Tuesday I had the opportunity to sit down once again with my Kitsap Interfaith Network colleagues for the first time since breaking for the summer, and it was great to touch base with my friends. But as great as the fellowship was, it was our guest presentation that has stayed with me. Mark Frost spoke with us on behalf of the Kitsap Resiliency Project, which is working to assess our readiness for that potential 9.0 earthquake that scientists are worried about. The goal is to help us plan for the worst case, just in case. I’ll be honest, in some ways it was as frightening as it was enlightening, but I’m glad I was there for the presentation. We have a long way to go in Kitsap county, but we also have the potential to really prepare ourselves for the big one! So in spite of the truly dire threat that led to this conversation, I left the meeting feeling both hopeful and inspired.
But it wasn’t just the project that has stayed with me, it was that one word: resilience. So I looked it up. According to Merriam Webster online, one definition of resilience is “an ability to recover from or adjust easily to misfortune or change.” Almost immediately it hit me that this pretty much sums up the needs of the 21st century church – especially when you take out the misfortune part. We are going to have to reach down and find that ability to adjust easily to change. Of course, the flipside of this is that we’ll have to cease uttering what have been described as the seven last words of the church: “we’ve never done it that way before.” (Or, if you prefer: “but we’ve always done it that way” – either works.) It might not sound hard at first, but if you’ve ever worked on making a change in the church then you already know that it’s
usually much easier said than done.
And that is one of the reasons I’m rolling out the new studies you hopefully read about on page one – we’re going to have to learn to live with change. As a personal discipline, the Living the Questions study will push us to reconsider and even re-imagine our faith – so that’s one way to practice change. Meanwhile, the Thrive book study will encourage us to embrace change as a community, so that will be more of a shared discipline. Both will surely enlighten and edify as well, but getting comfortable with the idea of change is a good practice for us as people of faith.
So let me know if you’re ready to join in one of these disciplines and practice with me. And regardless of what draws you to them, I’m looking forward to seeing you there!
Yours on the Journey,
PS – If you’re interested in learning more about the Kitsap Resiliency Project, there will be a meeting on Saturday, October 21st from 10 AM – 2 PM at Bremerton First United Methodist Church. I’ve put this one on my calendar, and encourage you to check it out, too!
Christian Church of Bremerton is a diverse group of people seeking to
respond to the vision of God's purpose revealed through Jesus the
We believe this vision calls us to be an intentional community, which engages persons in Christian practices. These practices include the Lord's Supper, joyful worship, Bible Study, prayer, service, and inclusive hospitality. We anticipate being open to all people, discerning how we can respond to needs within and beyond our congregation. As a community we will listen to and bear one another's burdens, and work on behalf of justice for all God's people.
To embrace and manifest Christ-like relationships in our community, we desire to communicate Jesus' death on the cross and bear witness to His resurrection as a sign of hope in this world. We seek to realize this hope by finding ways to overcome the forces that degrade, enslave and oppress God's creation.
In this vision we seek to know, to discern, and to act on the Holy Spirit's guidance to become an expression of God's new creation through our personal gifts and resources. In our actions we strive "to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with [our] God." (Micah 6:8c)
Copyright © 2003 First Christian Church of Bremerton. Stained glass by Fred Hereth