“The water that I will give will become in them a spring of water gushing up to eternal life.” (John 4:14b)
Summer greetings to you all in the name of Jesus Christ!
Water… water may be on our minds this spring as we go into summer. April showers we expect will bring beautiful May flowers. But heavy snow during the winter followed by heavy rains this spring, saturated our ground so any more rain overflowed and brought flooding and wet basements to our area. Life-giving waters in the oceans and the Gulf of Mexico provide us with much desired seafood. As I write this, the Nashville area is flooded with life-threatening overflowing rivers, and a major leak of life-threatening oil flows continuously into the Gulf of Mexico. Life-giving water can turn so quickly into a life-threatening force.
Jesus promises us life-giving water that will always be life-giving. The message of Easter is that Christ is alive; not only alive but life itself. When we believe in Christ, and live as Jesus lived, love as God loves us, this life-giving water not only fills us but “gushes up” in us with life abundant. Instead of life-threatening flooding, God-given water of life overflows into us and out of us to those around us. As we love others as we are loved, as we serve our neighbor as we would want to be served, we ourselves are filled with life eternal and abundant.
As you’ll read inside this newsletter, we will be finding creative and different ways to continue to bring you this newsletter, to stay in communication with you. Among future communications will be sharing your ideas for all of us to serve, in Jesus’ name, those in need. I invite you to pray about more ways you and this church might serve our neighbors. I ask also that you be in prayer about how we might build up the financial foundation of our church with increased giving to our operation budget, so that we may continue to be in mission, reaching out to others in the name of Jesus Christ.
In gratitude for the privilege of serving along side you in ministry,
Posted In: News
The Future of St. Andrew’s Newsletter – we need your help!
The Post Office now sends our bulk-rate Newsletter by way of Eatontown and Trenton, and it has taken the last two issues over two weeks to reach you. So, we will try new creative ways to get the Newsletter to you; here’s how you can help: IF YOU HAVE AN E-MAIL ADDRESS, we will send it to you via e-mail. PLEASE BE SURE WE HAVE YOUR E-MAIL ADDRESS, but let us know if you would NOT PREFER e-mail delivery. IF YOU ARE REGULARLY IN WORSHIP, and could pick up your Newsletter on a Sunday morning, you may pick up a paper copy in the back of the sanctuary or in the church office. FOR THOSE WHO DO NOT HAVE E-MAIL, AND ARE NOT REGULARLY IN WORSHIP, we will mail the Newsletter with first-class postage. THIS ISSUE IS THE LAST ONE WE WILL SEND AT THE REDUCED BULK RATE. We appreciate your patience as we find ways to continue to communicate with you.
Choir Recognition and Celebration of Music Ministry
On Sunday June 6 we will celebrate our music ministry as we recognize and thank our choir and music director Mary Eichhorn. Come worship with us for this beautiful and meaningful service of music and Holy Communion.
Christian Education, Sunday School Recognition Sunday June 13
Join us in worship on Sunday June 13 as we celebrate Christian Education at St. Andrew’s. We’ll recognize and show our appreciation for our teachers for their faithfulness and love of their students; we’ll celebrate our children and adult learners for their faithfulness in growing as disciples.The final day of children’s Sunday School will be Sunday June 20, as we give our teachers time to refresh and renew in the summer months. Because of the heat and schedules of the summer, our services will be more informal, and our children will be encouraged to stay through the shorter worship services.
We Recognize these Teachers Substitute Teachers
Jennifer Winemiller Robbins, Jill Lambert
Michele Nieberlien, Karen Fulton
Also, we are in gratitude to Rev. Brian Cloud for leading Wednesday evening Bible Study, and Christi Grieb for leading our Youth group through the year.
Come June 13 to express your gratitude to our teachers and learners. We will also recognize and celebrate our Disciple Bible Study and Disciple 2 graduates who will be finishing over 30 weeks of covenant group meetings and weekly readings of the Bible, growing in their knowledge and love of God, growing as loving and serving disciples of Jesus Christ.
What’s Happening in Sunday School?
Our children are enthusiastic learners, who also teach our teachers! Growing in their faith, and knowledge of a loving God, they have remembered Jesus during Holy Week and the glory and power of the Resurrection. They have met and journeyed with the earliest disciples, Peter and John and Philip, who shared the good news of the gospel with strangers, making more disciples who love God in Jesus Christ. And they’ve journeyed with Paul, who spread the good news across cultures and nations, working with leaders like Barnabas and Lydia to grow the church. With these examples of gospel-loving disciples who learned and taught, our children are also sharing and spreading the gospel with those they know. In addition to learning, they are serving others, as they continue to collect money for malaria nets which help our neighbors in Africa, saving lives one at a time. Thank a Sunday School teacher today for sharing their love of God so faithfully with our children. And invite a neighbor or friend to bring their children to our Sunday School!
Our Sunday School and Youth are in Mission
Our youth assisted the UMW in their “Health Kits” project, sorting and packaging personal items you brought in for disaster relief through UMCOR (United Methodist Committee on relief), collected items for the animal shelter and continue to collect used eye-glasses (box in rear of sanctuary). We commend and praise our youth and children for their outreach, compassion, and commitment to God’s children. Keep those food items and eye glasses coming!
Saturday, June 26th
Help the United Methodist Women have a successful event so we can help others through mission.
Our Gift Auction is in need of prizes. For this sale we are not asking merchants to donate, so your gifts are needed and welcomed. This can be a craft, gift item or gift card. Some folks make up a basket of goodies. Be creative and help us have a terrific auction. Contact Sue Gardner
Hannah’s Hearth sells all kinds of baked good as well as jam and other food items but they are dependent on help from everyone for their inventory. Debbie Rutledge is coordinator of this department.
The jewelry table usually makes several hundred dollars on your castoffs so go through your jewelry and donate items you no longer wear. Betty Rushton will be happy to accept your donations.
Val Crossman is in charge of Granny’s Attic and would welcome nicer castoffs for the “attic” such as collectibles, good small furniture items and other “attic’ treasures.
Turkeys are also needed for the Susannah Rachel Circle’s famous turkey salad luncheon. Please notify Pat Keller.
If you would like to help during the bazaar, please let Betty Rushton know. We would love to have you help and it is great fun.
DISCIPLE Bible Study: BECOMING DISCIPLES THROUGH BIBLE STUDY
I invite you to prayerfully consider a life-affirming, faith-growing experience, a 34-week intensive study of Old and New Testaments, from creation to the new Jerusalem. We’ll study major persons, events, themes of the Bible in a chronological movement of the biblical story. DISCIPLE aims at transformation, not just information. We would meet for 2 hours once per week, day and time to be determined by the group; each session includes a 15 minute video presentation by a Bible scholar, then guided discussion among the group that relates the reading to our lives and growth as disciples of Jesus Christ. Homework reading is expected. Hundreds of thousands of fellow Christian journeyers, including 10 from St. Andrew’s have grown and benefited from Disciple Bible Study since its introduction in the 1980’s by The United Methodist Church. We’ll have an information/introduction session in early-September; in the meantime if you are interested or have questions, please contact Pastor Francie.
Shawl Knitting Ministry
The shawl that was made for me and the prayers that are being said for me from people I have yet to meet are so humbling and overwhelming. I cried when I received it and read your note. There are so many wonderful people in the world and I thank you so much for reaching out to me. It gives me strength to know so many are keeping me in their thoughts and prayers. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. (from a recent shawl recipient).
Through this powerful ministry, the prayers of this congregation are shared with those in need of healing, as expressed in the note above. Dozens of persons have benefited from being wrapped in God’s love and healing power, as your prayers are knitted or crocheted into every stitch. Recipients are profoundly grateful for these prayerfully and lovingly crafted shawls, and especially for the prayers that give them strength and courage, and represent God’s healing comforting presence. Praise God for this ministry! The group meets at the church on the first Monday morning each month – come join us! And let Pastor Francie know if you or someone you know could benefit from receiving a shawl.
The 16th Annual Walk for All Ages
The 16th Walk for All Ages will be held on Sunday June 13th on the lawn of in front of the Great Auditorium in Ocean Grove. The Walk will begin at 1:30PM and registration begins at 12:30AM. We are encouraging families and congregations to attend this annual event to raise money for the Fellowship Fund. The Bishop will open the Walk with a prayer and a blessing.
United Methodist Homes provides care to 1300 seniors in 10 communities. The founders of UMH made this promise: “no resident will ever be asked to leave due to inability to pay the total cost of care.” Your generous contributions to The Fellowship Fund make it possible to keep this promise. For information about supporting our members who are walking, or if you’d like to become a walker, please contact the church office.
A Note from The Finance Committee
For St. Andrew’s to be able to survive a calamitous experience such as losing our roof in a storm (prediction is that we are supposed to have eleven hurricanes this season) or have our heating system suddenly stop working (especially after our very cold and snowy winter), we are going to have to rebuild our reserves. Actually, for St. Andrew’s to meet its monthly payroll and debt obligations everyone must bring their giving and pledges up to date.
In 2009 our church budget was $260,102. With the economy in a tailspin we reduced the budget for 2010 to $244,443. This is a significant reduction. But even with that we are still unable to meet some of our budget obligations. With the approach of summer, when many of us travel, there is a distinct possibility that if our giving drops off too far or if we don’t keep up our pledge we will not be able to meet even our payroll (this actually happened in August). In addition the Trustees have several critical maintenance projects, but we do not have the reserves or extra money to pay for them.
In order to contain our mailing costs, we send the newsletter by bulk mail. Recent changes for the postage service require Tina, our church secretary, to drive to Eatontown to drop off the newsletters. The first time it took two weeks for them to be delivered. The second time it took nearly three weeks for the newsletters to be delivered and they didn’t arrive until Holy Week which was a week late. We are looking for creative ways to get you the newsletter without increasing our expenses.
We are all trying to save where we can but even with that we cannot make our monthly budget obligations and are operating at a deficient. Many of us spend at least $25.00 a month on a variety of “nice-to-do/nice-to-have” items. If every one of us increases our giving by $25 per month to the operating budget, we would meet our budget obligations and begin to put our church on a firm financial foundation.
St. Andrew’s friends and members, of ALL AGES including our youth and children, will be reaching out to our neighbors in Asbury Park this summer, serving side by side with First UMC there. There are several ministries we can assist with, including but not limited to helping with Vacation Bible School, and preparing and serving Wednesday evening suppers. More details to come. You’ve asked for mission project locally—here’s your chance! If you are interested in this important local out-reach, please contact Pastor Francie.
Do you love to teach, do you love to work with children? A homework support club is being planned for Fall 2010 at St. Andrew’s, and we need educators and others to serve as mentors and general tutors. Let Eleanor McClymont know of your interest, as we prepare to serve, by nurturing and guiding our children, who are God’s special gift to the world.
Posted In: News