It was a day of music, skits, tributes and laughter. The love and friendship were palpable - we hope you enjoy the following message from Charlotte and the following photographs. Thank you to Dave Love and Curt Lundy for the photographs!
Gratitude for an Unforgettable Day and Congregation!
There were many things I wanted to say at the end of the celebration this past Sunday, but I was so overwhelmed with gratitude, all I could do was stand there in a fog and say thank you! So I’m glad I can write this final newsletter for you.
First, as Rabbi Arnie, former leader of Congregation Shir Tikvah, entered our building for the party, he told me how much he was enjoying retirement. And of course, he had a story! He told me about a friend who having just retired was asked by his wife, “What are you going to do today? and he replied, “Nothing.” “But,” she said, “That is what you did yesterday.” “Yes,” he replied, “But I’m not done yet!”
Secondly, most clergy know this, but I’m not sure that congregations do.
“A great congregation makes a good pastor.” In other words a great congregation shapes and molds, advises and teaches the pastor even more than the pastor does that for the congregation. Thank you for making me into a good pastor!
Thank you for all you have taught me over the almost 13 years I have been with you. Thank you for attending worship weekly and being involved in the mission and ministry which I know will continue through Northminster. As I said at the end of the afternoon celebration. I pray you will continue to show God’s love to each other with in these walls, as well as outside of them in the larger community and the world.
Thank you for a fabulous day last Sunday – the words and songs, the music stirring our hearts, the smiles and tears, the laughter of our children, the hugs and the gifts. …I will treasure the sea glass necklace always, and remember how God’s love through you all, has smoothed out my edges into beauty. I am still overwhelmed by the financial gift, and I promise to use it for a special pilgrimage. Thank you! As I go through the cards, photos, and gifts in my memory box, please know I am smiling and crying from sheer joy!
May God bless you and keep you. May God be gracious and kind to you. May God grant you peace, this day and always. Amen.
At its April 6th meeting, Session approved the Sexual Misconduct and Child Protection Policies and Procedures which are a requirement of the Presbytery.
Each congregation is given the freedom to write their own policies as is appropriate for their church.
Thank you to the ad hoc committee who began this process over 2 years ago. The session is grateful for their first draft which was refined and approved. Copies will be available in the office as well as on our website.
Our book group met for the last time for this season, and will be on summer hiatus. We will pick up again in September.
We hope to see you then!
Session approved the Interim Pastor Position Description at a Special Session meeting Sunday, March 26. It was submitted to the Transitional Leadership Subcommittee (TLS) of the Presbytery Committee on Ministry, and we were gratified to receive the following message from Ellen Schreuder, one of our liaisons to the TLS: "Excellent position description. I like the brief history of your church."
Interim pastor candidates are gathered for us by the Transitional Leadership Subcommittee and Diane Agnew, our other liaison and TLS Chair, confirmed the process is underway. We hope to, perhaps, receive a candidate list by Sunday, April 23.
Committee Members: Martha Babcock (Chair), Matt Leight, Larry Sweet, Chris Riddering, Sarah Wright
On Easter Sunday not only did we celebrate the resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ, but we also welcomed three beautiful youth into our congregation as adult members. These are the words I spoke to them on that joyous day:
We rejoice that you now desire to declare your faith and to share with us in our common ministry. In baptism you were joined to Christ, and made members of his church. In the community of the people of God, you have learned of God’s purpose for you and for all creation. You have been nurtured in worship, at the table of our Lord, in church school classes and you are called to witness to the gospel of Jesus Christ.
After the questions of membership I gave each of them a certificate of membership and a wooden cross titled CROSS OF THE VISION, that were made by a friend of mine. Many of you saw the crosses after worship as they wore them around their necks, and here is the write up about the symbolism of this particular cross.
The Vision was followed by the Magi as they followed the star that led them to the Christ Child. The Vision is followed by those who sit beneath the stars and yearn for that time when the lamb will lie down with the lion in the Peaceable Kingdom. It is the Vision of Five: 5 books of the Hebrew Scriptures called the Pentateuch or The Law --- 5 Pillars of Faith in Islam and 5 daily prayers for the Muslim --- the 5th Book of the Christian Scriptures and the birth of the Church and the story of Pentecost.
The Vision comes into focus as it is woven so as to reveal the Star whose life-line is infinite without beginning or end. The Vision is that of the stars of the Drinking Gourd (Big Dipper) and the North Star and the journey to freedom.
The star, carved from Aspen wood, is the vision of hope that makes the soul quiver even as the Aspen leaves quiver as the wind moves through them. The Vision is renewed as the Cross is embraced as a vision of Hope even as the Prophet Isaiah looked to myrtle as a wood that embodied the renewal of hope as experienced in faith.
The Cross of the Vision is the Star that is followed on the path marked with beauty. It is God’s grace that reveals the Star that leads you to your own Bethlehem where your gifts are offered to a world in need. (You can find more crosses by Rev. Woody Shook on www.wooden-crosses.com)
Please welcome our newest members and get them involved in the church!
It's snowy AND raining outside right now, but May 7 is guaranteed to be a perfect day for a walk. Please join the Northminster team in support of Church World Service and its work with the hungry and homeless wherever there is a need. The money we raise in our CROP Walk will help those affected by war and natural disasters, refugees and the dispossessed all over the world as well as locally. Part of the proceeds will be shared with the Clawson Community Food Bank and Troy People Concerned.
We will walk on Sunday, May 7, beginning from Trinity Lutheran Church on 14 Mile Road in Clawson. Sign in is at noon and we start walking at 1:00. Participants who raise $150 two weeks prior to the walk will receive a special T-shirt. The walk is about 3 miles starting on 14 Mile, around to Main Street, up Normandy, and then back across Crooks to end at the church. After the walk, treat yourself to something to eat at one of Clawson's many wonderful little restaurants. It will be a great day for us and anyone who benefits from our efforts. Register to participate online at www.crophungerwalk.org/troymi/Team/View/34110/Northminster-Presbyterian and get a pledge envelope from Susan Love. Even if you can't walk, you can still take part by sponsoring a walker. We can take checks (made out to CWS/CROP) or cash, but the easiest way to donate is through our team Web page. The more walkers we have, the more money we can raise for CWS and the more fun it is for all of us. Direct your questions to Susan Love (248.588.0905 or 248.346.5185 and firstname.lastname@example.org). Northminster has been part of CROP Walk for over 20 years now, and we've always been leaders in participation.
Let's make this year our best ever!
Now that the roof has been repaired, hallway restored, (then downed trees removed from the storm!) Building & Grounds is working hard to freshen up the front of the Sanctuary by re-painting the back panel, staining and oiling the three crosses, as well as on other projects around the building.
After rescheduling twice, the Interim Pastor Search Committee (Larry Sweet, Chris Riddering, Sarah Wright, Matt Leight, Martha Babcock, Chair) met on Thursday, March 16, with Diane Agnew, chair of the Transitional Leadership subcommittee of the Presbytery Committee on Ministry.
The interim pastor position description was reviewed and approved. The position description must be approved by Session, then by the Presbytery Committee on Ministry, following which candidates can be sought.
The CS&M Committee has been trying to develop a project to support Refugee Resettlement in SE Michigan and had hoped to have Ken Fouty of Samaritas speak to our members about this issue. However, one of the IFLC member faith communities (Church of the Latter Day Saints) is offering a program that will present the same things some of us heard from Ken at a TIG event last fall.
The LDS program “I was a Stranger” will answer some questions such as: Why are there so many refugees? How are they vetted? What is the resettlement process? What happens after the government programs run out? And what can we do to help? Samaritas and other organizations will be presenting on all of these topics Friday, May 12 at 7:00 pm at the Bloomfield Hills Stake Center (37425 Woodward Ave, Bloomfield Hills).
As CS&M hopes to explore ways we might support these efforts as a congregation, we hope many of you will join committee members in attending this program. The flyer is on the bulletin board.
Reminder, if you are interested in attending the TIG tour and presentation at the Swords Into Plowshares Peace Center and Art Gallery (33 E. Adams, Detroit) this Sunday, March 26, be sure to let Ruth know. Our program begins at 2:00 pm. If wanting to carpool, also let her know that.
The TIG National Day of Prayer this year will be Thursday May 4th at 7:00 pm at Congregation Shir Tikvah (3900 Northfield Parkway, Troy). The theme is ”Praying to Repair Broken Connections” and as always will be a program to remember. We will have spoken, danced or sung prayers as well as communal singing, all followed by a simple reception afterwards. Our family-friendly program is open to all, so please plan to join us!
Additionally, our partner interfaith organization, the InterFaith Leadership Council, has 2 programs coming up that may be of interest to members or friends of Northminster. The first is the second in a series “Sounds of the Spirit” and it explores “reflections on theology and the place of music in worship across the Abrahamic faith traditions”. The Abrahamic traditions are those of the descendants of Abraham: Jewish, Christian, Baha’i and Muslim. It will be at Christ Church Cranbrook on April 30th, 3:00-6:00 pm. Cost is $10 and you can register and pay at the door or go to https://tinyurl.com/soundsofthespirit.
The second IFLC program is another immersive experience for adults in the “Exploring Religious Landscapes” series. This one also focuses on the Abrahamic faiths but is more in-depth and will include visits to Temple Beth El (March 29 6-9pm), New Mt Moriah Missionary Baptist Church (April 27 6-9 pm), Islamic Association of Greater Detroit – IAGD (May 17th 6-9 pm) and the Farmington Library to learn about Baha’i. To register for any one of these or for the whole series, go to www.detroitinterfaithcouncil.com.