Lent, March 6, 2022

This Sunday:

This Sunday, in worship at COS, Rev. Karen Campbell will preach from Zechariah 10:8-10 and 1 Timothy 1:1-2,12-17, 2 Timothy 1:2-4 in the standard English service. Rev. Andrew Mead will preach from 1 Timothy 1:1-2,12-17, 2 Timothy 1:2-4 in the Basic English Service in Room 5.

Following the services, we invite everyone to stick around in the large sanctuary for a GPS Panel Discussion of Chapter 1 of Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s Life Together.

Sign up for our Newsletter to receive the Zoom links.

Church News:

COVID Team Update

At COS we have taken a cautious approach to our life together during the pandemic. Thank you all for your flexibility and tolerance as you have loved your neighbor so generously for 2 long years. COVID cases are declining, and new CDC guidelines place our county in the medium-risk category. This Sunday, we plan to follow the new CDC guidelines and remove our church mask mandate. If you have a low risk of severe COVID disease, you are invited to be in worship and in the church building without a mask. Please feel free to continue to mask if you prefer. One exception is children’s programming. We ask that leaders of Children’s ministries for infants through 1st grade continue to mask while teaching. Staff and teachers in nursery, Little Lambs, Children’s Worship, and Sunday School through 1st grade are included in this exception.

With masks optional, eating and drinking together can begin again. Communion circles will resume with a shared cup and precut bread. Please don’t sing while in the communion circle to reduce aerosol and droplets landing on the elements. A roving council member will be available to deliver fully packaged communion elements to those choosing not to join the communion circle. Coffee will be offered after the service. We thank God for the opportunities opened up by the dramatic fall in COVID cases.

YOU ARE INVITED to participate in the THURSDAY BIBLE STUDY, which began on February 17. The group meets Thursdays from 9:30-11 am and will be studying the Sermon on the Mount from Matthew 5-7. This week we will be reading and learning from Matthew 5:21 – 30. You are invited to listen to the group presentation on COS you-tube after Friday of the week and arrange your own electronic small group discussions if you wish. If you need CHILDCARE, or have further questions, contact Mary Loeks. Everyone is welcome!

Save a life. Give blood. If you have ever been in a situation where you or someone you love has needed blood to survive, you know how vital this gift is to a community. Giving blood is a selfless and noble form of generosity. Our next blood drive at Church of the Servant is only a week away – Monday, March 14, from 2-7pm in the church cafe. The entire process (screening, donation, refreshments) takes about one hour. Questions? Contact Ruth Huisman or Beth Karanicola. Sign up online for an appointment:  https://donate.michigan.versiti.org/donor/schedules/drive_schedule/144226   Thank you, thank you!

To our brothers and sisters in Christ, CORR (Congregations Organizing for Racial Reconciliation) has changed its name to reflect our current emphasis and vision.  We are now CORE (Community Organizing for Racial Equity)! 

We continue to offer Understanding Racism workshops and for 2022, we hope to offer a mix of virtual and in-person workshops.   These workshops are open to everyone in our congregation.  It is our hope and prayer that as COS people continue in this work of understanding racism, Church of the Servant will reveal what Godly antiracism looks like in the community. Our times are always fraught with racial tension and this is one important opportunity for us to work together to address it.

            The first (in a long time) in-person Understanding Racism workshop is being offered from Thursday- Saturday, April 21 -23. This workshop will be held at Church of the Servant.

            Please prayerfully consider taking advantage of these opportunities. Register at COREnow.org  

During Lent, we invite you into a conversation to probe the question: What does the Christian life look like together? We will be doing this by reading Dietrich Bonhoeffer’s classic book: Life Together.

The past couple of years have severely disrupted Christian unity and Christian community. We’ve seen deconstruction happening around congregational life, leaving the question: Is it possible to model a community that is Christ-centered and truly exists to love our neighbor? Is the church a place where we simply come to worship and be fed to go and live discrete lives of service, or can we bear witness to a greater purpose as a Christian community?

We don’t pretend to have the answers. Instead, we invite you to journey with us as we examine the nature, purpose, and principles of what a Christian community might look like.

How it will work:

  • Each Sunday during Lent (beginning March 6), the sermon topic will align with the week’s chapter from Bonhoeffer’s Life Together.
  • Immediately after the Sunday morning services will be a GPS session where a panel will discuss the chapter in more detail.
  • We hope you will study the book in your household or sign up to join a discussion group. 
  • Many of the book discussions will take place in church on a Wednesday night (beginning March 9) where we will come together to have a brief time of gathered worship (6-6.30pm) then break off into small groups and children’s activities (6.30-7.30pm) up to 8th grade.

Learn more about joining the book study by visiting coscrc.org/lifetogether

We invite you to subscribe to “Setting the Table”. “Setting the Table” is our weekly worship email that provides recipients with a snapshot of where we are in the liturgical calendar, a glimpse of the upcoming sermon, the week’s scripture passage, and interesting bits of information about our current liturgy. These emails help to prepare ourselves for Sunday worship and can be used as part of your weekly devotions. Learn more and subscribe here.

You’re invited to join the Wednesday morning prayer group at COS to pray for the church community. The group meets every Wednesday at 10 am in the COS library. All are welcome to join whenever possible.

Scriptoria: An Interfaith Writing Workshop with Gary Schmidt, Hugh Cook, Patrice Gopo, L. S. Klatt, Robert Hudson, Nikki Grimes, Vinita Hampton Wright, Cynthia Beach, and more. Morning workshops. Afternoon instruction. One-on-ones with editors. Deep faith conversations.

Think boot camp for your writing—whether it’s fiction, nonfiction, or poetry on June 20-24, 2022 in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

Visit scriptoriaworkshop.org