Happening This Sunday:

9am & 11:30am September 22 – If you didn’t have a chance to look around at the tables last week, today we will again highlight different COS ministries in our café and fellowship space. Come and learn more about these ministries and think about ways to get involved!

This Sunday is Safe Church Sunday denomination-wide. Please take a moment to read the mailbox insert on the Circle of Grace, an excellent program that teaches children and youth respect for themselves and for one another. It also offers tools to help young people to determine if a situation is safe and what to do when something feels unsafe. Overall the program helps build church communities where the value of each person and the sacredness of all relationships are honored, so all are free to worship and grow, free from abuse.

Also, take a few minutes to read an article on the Safe Church News bulletin board in the back of church. Resources and books are available by contacting Amy Heeringa.


High School News- High School Youth Group Kick Off Event: Sun., Sept. 29 after worship! Save the Date! More details coming soon…

Church News

Our giving for this week totaled $20,942.71 including online giving. Our current total general fund giving for the month of September is $62,441.47.

Giving Envelopes – We will be ordering new giving envelope boxes soon. If you received a box of giving envelopes last year you’ll automatically get one for the next year (unless you notify us). If you didn’t and would like to receive one, please, email AJ Zahrt at aj.zahrt@coscrc.org

Love the smell of coffee in the morning? Kenny Westrate is looking for a few more people to make coffee on Sunday mornings on a rotation basis. Coffee should be ready for the 9am GPS classes. Heather and Kenny are becoming new parents soon and need help picking up some of their Sunday duties. Please see Kenny as soon as possible!

Seniors! This Mon. Sept. 23, at 10 am, at COS, we want to hear your ideas, concerns and observations! In a brainstorming session led by Dale Cooper, we will explore opportunities for growth by and for COS seniors. Come to enjoy the fellowship, coffee and learn from past and present, as we embark on our COS and personal futures. For questions or rides, see Jeanette Sprik.

COS continues to support interns who are in seminary training. This year we welcome back Nicole Romero as a second-year intern who is studying at Calvin Seminary. We also welcome Larry Figueroa as a first-year intern who has just started studies at Western Seminary. Please continue to hold our interns in prayer as they juggle studies, work, and integration of faith and learning.

Inclusion Support Team – The children’s ministry is putting together a team of caring volunteers to assist children with disabilities in engaging fully in the Children’s Worship program. We have one child to serve in this way and one volunteer assisting him. We’d like to have 4-6 people on the team so each volunteer could assist once a month or so. Assisting would involve sitting on the floor and some lifting in and out of a wheelchair at circle time or the feast. If you are interested in joining this team, which has the potential to grow to serve other children in various ministries, please contact Jolanda Howe at jo.howe@coscrc.org.

Seeking Elementary Sunday School Teachers and Assistants- Sunday school begins soon, but we still have a few openings for teachers and assistants for K-6th grade. We’d like to have a team of leaders for each class so teachers can work out the best schedule for them–alternating with others weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly, for example. This year we are trying something new for lower elementary: grouping K-3rd graders together to allow younger children to remain with older siblings, and older children to play a role in storytelling and assisting with small group time. This changes the leadership dynamic from a single teacher in a classroom to a pair or trio of leaders on a Sunday morning, all engaging the kids in the lesson. If you feel unsure about being the lead teacher, but enjoy children and want to help them grow in faith, consider serving as part of a teaching team for the K-3rd grade. If you appreciate the wit and insights of upper elementary kids, we also need more leaders for the 4th-6th-grade classes. At all age levels, it would be very helpful to have leaders who speak Swahili or French. Please contact Jolanda Howe jo.howe@coscrc.org or 616.238.1324 to talk about possibilities for how you could serve, and plan to attend the faith formation training this Wed. at 6pm or next Sunday at 9am.

COS Annual Worship & Faith Formation Volunteer Training: Sept. 25 & Sept. 29! Faith Formation Volunteers: Insurance requires that ALL volunteers who work with children 0-18 MUST attend an annual training event to remind you of our procedures for keeping kids safe. We work hard to make this training informative, efficient, and fun. If you are unable to attend either of the training opportunities, contact Annette or Jolanda to arrange a separate training time. (Who should attend? Volunteer leaders and assistants for Sunday school, HS Small Groups, Boys, Girls, or Kid’s club leaders, Children and Worship or Little Lambs leaders or assistants, WNL leaders and Nursery Team members.)

Worship Volunteers: The worship training is intended for those who are serving or would like to serve as scripture readers, liturgists or intercessory prayer leaders, although anyone curious about worship and liturgy is welcome to attend. Those who attend training this year (or have attended in the past 2 years) will be given priority with regard to scheduling for liturgists and prayer leaders. Please let us know you are coming by emailing Maria Stapert (maria.stapert@coscrc.org). 6-8pm Sept. 25 Training – includes a free dinner from 6-6:30! 9-10am Sept. 29 Training – an abbreviated version of the Wed. night training offered before worship. We want you to be well equipped and ready to serve!

As Andrew and Karen are preaching through Jeremiah and exploring the theme of “a light in the City,” we would like to devote some time in the intercessory prayer to praying for the various callings placed on the lives of our congregation members. We invite you to contribute prayers from your callings, whether you see your calling as a nurse or a builder, a business owner or a stay-at-home parent, a student or a retiree…whatever stage of life you find yourself in. We ask that you think about your prayers using the categories of ‘Trumpets, tears and ashes.’ Trumpets: What can we celebrate in this vocation? Tears: What brings tears and lament? Ashes: What issues that cause injustice in this workplace do we need to repent for corporately? (Read more in last week’s Liturgy Lesson found online: https://www.churchoftheservantcrc.org/liturgy-lesson-trumpets-tears-and-ashes/) If you would like to contribute to our prayers in this way, please email Maria Stapert (maria.stapert@coscrc.org) or Larry Figueroa.

Your action is urgently needed! The US refugee resettlement program is in grave threat of being dismantled through a very low refugee admissions goal to be set before Sept. 30th. There is also an Executive Order likely to come out soon that will allow local officials or governors to opt their state out of the refugee program. Decision-makers urgently need to hear the moral voice of faith communities and stakeholders who have participated in the refugee program and helped resettle refugees. Please go to the COS New Americans Facebook page TODAY to fill out a simple form to generate a letter which will be added to thousands of others from people of faith across the country who are supporting refugees and immigrants through this crisis.

The Bible study on 1 Corinthians has begun! You are still welcome to join us this week Thursday in the cafe area, 9:30 to 11:00 am for lesson 1 on I Cor. 1:1–3:4. Childcare will be provided. Questions? Ask Mary Loeks, mary@loeks.com.

Planned Giving Information Session: The Stewardship Team will be offering its second educational event about planned giving opportunities on Wednesday, September 25, 6:30-7:30 pm. Stewardship Team member, Michael Zahrt, will lead us through ways to “Plan Your Legacy for COS.” Michael will also discuss Qualified Charitable Distributions, which bring significant tax advantages for anyone at or approaching age 70½ with a retirement plan. Michael is an estate planning attorney with Foster, Swift, Collins & Smith PC who specializes in income tax management. All are welcome.

Registration is open for the October 10-12 and 24-26 Understanding Racism Workshops. This workshop experience is designed to explore the deep racial complexity of the United States and begin to explore paths for reconciliation. Our goal is to gain insight in understanding systemic racism through the eyes of faith and Scripture. We encourage all leaders and members at Church of the Servant to attend one of these workshops. This effort helps us to become focused and work together to address one of our country’s greatest troubles. Register online at CORRnow.org.

We are collecting books on culture, multi-cultural ministry, refugees, immigration, foreign policy, and ESL for a shelf in the library. This collection is primarily aimed at books to be used by new Americans as well as those seeking to learn about them, their cultures, and life together. If you would like to donate a title(s), please drop it with Lori in the library on Sunday morning with a sticky note “New American shelf.” For questions, or if you would like to suggest a title for us to acquire contact Troy Bierma (troy.bierma@coscrc.org).