This Sunday at COS:

On this Trinity Season Sunday, Jeff Chu, teacher-in-residence at Crosspointe Church, will preach from Matthew 23:1-12 in the Tree of Life service in the large sanctuary. Albert Strydhorst will preach in the All Nations Worship service in room 4. Following worship, stick around for our all-church meal, held on the first Sunday of each month.

Sunday Evening: return to COS for our 6 pm Service of Lament, Confession, and Repentance. This special service will seek to acknowledge the harm our congregation has caused LGBTQ members since its inception, ask forgiveness, and seek reconciliation. This is one opportunity for us to lean into our Statement of Belonging as we reach for unity and work to grow into a community of refuge and hope for the future.

The 10 am Tree of Life Service will also be broadcast via Zoom. Sign up for our Newsletter to receive the Zoom links.

Events Coming Up:

November 13 

Barbie Movie: COS is reserving a theater at Celebration Cinema North at 6:30 pm on Monday, Nov. 13 so that members and friends of COS can enjoy a FREE private screening of the Barbie movie. Popcorn and soda will also be available at a reduced price for members of our group. Members of COS are encouraged to watch this film in preparation for a GPS discussion on Sun., Nov. 19, that examines a Christian response to our culture’s view of gender.

November 20

Blood Drive: Seeking 5 more young donorsfor our Blood Drive in two weeks. Monday, November 20 (2-7pm), is the last of our four blood drives at Church of the Servant this year. We are so grateful for all our faithful donors, but we need to increase our donor base, and particularly add new donors. As a way to give thanks for your gift of life, will you consider donating blood? The need is great – right here in our community and in our state. Consider these facts: 1) About 37 out of every 100 Americans are eligible to donate blood – but only 3 to 4 people donate each year. 2) A single car accident victim can require as many as 100 units of blood. Our goal is 33 units of blood. Will you help us reach that? Sign up on the schedule through this link. Questions? Please contact Ruth Huisman or Beth Karanicola. Many thanks!

November 23

Thanksgiving Service: As is our tradition, we will worship together on Thanksgiving Day at 10 am. We will be blessed by music from Joyful Noise Orchestra and a time of sharing thanksgiving testimonies. More details to come.

December 3

Christmas Brunch: we will have the COS Annual Christmas Brunch on December 3 following morning worship. We are asking for volunteers for a set up team and a clean-up team. If you are willing and able to participate in either team, contact the church office.

December 17

O Antiphons Advent service at Church of the Servant – December 17, 2023 at 6 pm.The COS O Antiphons Advent service makes use of a series of medieval prayers referred to as the O Antiphons. They were composed for use in evening prayer services on the last seven days of Advent. They are best known to us as the seven verses of the advent hymn, O Come, O Come Emmanuel. Each antiphon is a petition for Christ to come, addressing the Messiah with a title from Old Testament prophecies. In anticipation of this year’s service, we invite members of the congregation to contribute artwork for our worship. If you would like to contribute artwork for this year’s service, please contact Maria Stapert, COS Worship Coordinator. Artwork is not limited to paintings nor limited to professional artists. Learn more here.

Upcoming Educational and Fellowship Opportunities:

November 5: All Church meal

November 12, GPS: Kevin Timpe presenting on the Philosophy of Gender November 13: Screening of Barbie for COS members at Celebration Cinema North – 6:30 pm

November 19, GPS: Movie discussion of Barbie moderated by Debra Rienstra, Madeline Witvliet, Annaka Ediger, and Stacy Steen

Council Update:

This year, our theme of Refuge of course ties into our church’s mission statement – “Rooted in Christ and nurtured by the Spirit, we grow in God’s grace to share gifts of refuge, fellowship, and hope.” These concepts of refuge and our mission as a church take up a good bit of Council’s time.

In September, the Council members discussed what were the major questions facing COS, and do we need answers to clarify and carry out our mission. These questions range from staffing and budget to questions surrounding ANW and TOL services, to ministry priorities.

In our October meeting, the Council approved a mandate for a task force to work on these questions. Then, we turned to our focused topic to a more detailed discussion on how to move forward with a second pastor.

  • Do we need a second pastor? 
  • Do we look for a second pastor soon? 
  • Do we need to wait a while and answer some of these bigger questions posed in the September Council meeting?
  • What about our relationship with the CRC? 
  • We have had a co-pastor structure, but what are possible structures going forward?
  • Do we want an interim pastor? 

After a healthy discussion, there was consensus we need some of the bigger questions answered before we look for a second pastor even though it may take some more time to get through that process. Also, Council approved to begin the search for an interim pastor to hopefully begin their employment early 2024.  

In November, our discussion topic will be COS’s relationship with the CRC. There are a lot of discussions happening at the Classis level on this subject as well.  

There are a few things, the Council would ask of you as well.

  • Pastor Appreciation – While internationally, October is Pastor Appreciation Month, continue to encourage Pastor Andrew throughout the year.
  • Pray for leadership, each other, and our community.
  • Give input:
    • What big questions do you think COS needs to answer? 
    •  What are your thoughts on the path forward for COS’s relationship with the CRC. 
    • Who would be a good person for the task force to look at these questions. We want a diverse (age, gender, length of time at COS) group, so all are welcome.

God has been faithful and blessed COS for 50 years, and we trust our future is still in his gracious hands. Thank you for your prayers and support.

Church Announcements:

COS HR Committee needs assistance from a member who has some HR experience. We meet about four times a year, that’s all. If you can serve in this way, please contact Corrie Vos. We really need you.

Security Team Members Needed: The Security Team is entrusted with keeping the members, guests, and visitors physically safe and secure by endeavoring to make a safe facility, assistance in case of a medical emergency, and basic protection from fire, abuse, and intrusion. This Team is looking for volunteers to rotate Sundays and Wednesdays. For questions, to volunteer, or for a copy of the Security Team Mandate, contact or the church office.

Medical On-Call Team: In addition to more Security Team members, the Security Team is looking to form a sub-group with current or retired medical professionals who would be willing to be on the schedule for a Sunday morning emergency. This person would become the point person for the emergency, with support from the Security Team and Sunday Facilities Coordinator who would contact 911 and direct emergency vehicles. Hopefully, the Medical On-Call Team would be a safety net we don’t use very often. If you are willing and able to be part of the MOCT or for more information, contact the Church Administrator, Monica, or one of the co-chairs of the Security Team Dave Stransky  or Isaac Young.

Friendship ESL – New people continue to come. Just this morning (Tuesday), new faces from Cuba, Haiti, and the Dominican Republic. Needed:  substitute tutors for the coming winter months, when travel plans open several 2–3-week opportunities. Needed:  nursery worker for TUE & WED mornings, 915-1130, salary competitive. Contact Mark Fackler

Preaching Schedule

Nov. 12             ANS – Lucy Gitau, TOL – Pastor Andrew Mead

Nov. 19             ANS – Pastor Andrew Mead, TOL – Rev. Ron Rienstra

Nov. 26             ANS – Rachel Park, TOL – Todd Cioffi

Dec. 3               Prism service – Pastor Andrew Mead