Thursday Memo

Hi Five Oakers,

I have a few things I want to share with you today.

#1- We have four Five Oakers attending a Befriender Ministry Foundation Workshop next week, all day Monday through Thursday. The training qualifies us to offer this ministry that will be the foundation for our new Care Ministry at Five Oaks. In reality, small groups are our first line of care, but Care Ministry will be one of the ways we keep people from falling through the cracks if they are not in a small group. Twenty Five Oakers have already indicated an interest in volunteering in this ministry. One of our members, Jake Eyler, will be establishing this ministry at Five Oaks as part of his internship at Bethel Seminary. We’ll let you know when we are starting our training for our members who want to volunteer for this ministry.

#2- As we start of our new ministry year, we launch our new ministry plan. The plan is developed by the Staff Leadership Team and approved by the Governing Board. We have five initiatives this year and I’ll share one per week over the next few weeks. Just remember, these are initiatives, they do not include all the priorities we have in our on-going ministry of making disciples of kids, students and adults.

Initiative 1: Our leaders will understand the spiritual growth continuum and what catalyzes spiritual growth for people at different points on the continuum so that all ministries are designed to effectively make disciples.

The spiritual growth continuum is just a fancy way of saying people are at different places in their spiritual maturity. If you’ve heard me talk about whether Jesus is outside the car, in the back seat, in the front seat or in the drivers seat, this is what we’re talking about. Interestingly, the key catalysts for spiritual growth change depending on where you are on the continuum. So we want all of our leaders to understand this whole concept and we’re taking concrete steps to make sure that happens.

#3- We kicked off the ministry year with an all-staff party. About 30 staff and their spouses came over to our house for the most delicious BBQ provided and prepared by Matt and Jeanie Steele. Smoked pork and chicken with homemade Carolina style BBQ sauce. (My mouth is watering as I write.) Best baked beans I’ve ever had and some other great side dishes. Great food and great fellowship. Thank you Matt and Jeanie, you have servant hearts and you know how to make fantastic BBQ.

Group Pic 1
Group pic 2

#4- We received two cards back from first-time guests:

  • The first one is quite long, so I won’t include it here, but it was not complementary of our welcome. They did say, though, that they will try us again. Hopefully we will welcome them better the next time. And I hope they choose to come up for 10-Minute Connect if they haven’t yet.
  • Here’s the second one: “I found the congregation to be very friendly and welcoming.  They seemed eager to meet you and make you feel comfortable.” [Very good to hear after the last one. It would be good not to let anyone fall through the cracks. It takes openness and diligence on all our parts. It’s so easy to be focused on only people we know.]

#5- We launch the Eat This Book series this weekend based on Luke 18:31-34. It’s a four-week series about hearing God speak through his Word.

Hope to see you on the weekend. Pastor Henry