World Day of Prayer, Friday, March 1, 2019
World Day of Prayer is a worldwide, ecumenical movement of Christian women of many traditions who come together to observe a common day of prayer each year, and who, in many countries, have a continuing relationship in prayer and service.
It is initiated and carried out by women in more than 170 countries and regions.
- It is symbolized by an annual day of celebration observed on the first Friday of March to which all people are welcome.
- It brings women of different races, cultures and traditions together in fellowship, understanding and action throughout the year.
- Through World Day of Prayer, women affirm that prayer and action are inseparable and have immeasurable influence in the world.
- The motto of World Day of Prayer is “Informed Prayer and Prayerful Action.”
Please pray this prayer on Friday, March 1:
Loving God, Lord of heaven and earth, this earth, our home, belongs to you. Give us grace to love it as you do. Give us courage to give ourselves, as you do, for the good of all people for all of your creation. Strengthen us to stand, as you do, with the vulnerable poor. Give us wisdom to know when we have enough, and the voice to say “enough” to all that harms creation and hurts the poorest. This earth, our home, belongs to you. Amen.
A Steeple’s Story
I have towered over the City of Brookhaven well over 50 years – WAY before Brookhaven even thought of becoming a city. From my perch at 1366 N. Druid Hills Road, I have been fortunate to see a world go by.
I’ve seen trees planted and then cut down, streets widened, houses built, houses torn down, grocery stores come and go, street lights installed, a lot of happy weddings and unfortunately, a lot of sad funerals. I’ve seen many people come to town and not so many people leave. I’ve seen my home turn from a 100% Caucasian community into something much more stimulating and diverse. I’ve seen people walk a short distance to my home and some that have come from faraway places. Some of my new friends are from ALL over the world AND from ALL over the United States. There are males, females, gays, lesbians, and transgenders. We’ve got single folks, divorcees, married couples with and without children. We’ve got babies and teenagers. People with walkers, wheelchairs, and the occasional crutches. We’ve pretty much got a little bit of everything and we like it that way. Some folks have been coming here for over 70 years. They were married here, baptized and raised their children and grandchildren here. They’ve also mourned the loss of family members and/or friends and, now, the time has come for all these wonderful people to mourn me.
You see, I am their steeple and I’m about to be replaced. If you’ve seen me lately, you can tell I am worn out. And, when Hurricane Irma took my cross away, we didn’t know if this was an omen or a blessing. Churches all over the country have been struggling and many have closed. We thought that might be the case for this church too. Over the years, I’ve seen our pews filled to capacity, although that’s recently not the case. Sometimes there are only 50 people coming on Sunday morning. Low attendance makes it difficult to financially sustain an old building and pay salaries, but we manage.
We’re on a very busy, active, popular corner and many people use our description when giving directions – “take a left (or right depending on where you’re coming from) at the old white church on the corner.” We have been approached numerous times by developers who wanted us to move so they could tear us down and build some townhomes. It was very tempting. But fortunately, this little landmark corner of Brookhaven has stayed strong and I’m so proud of what so few have recently accomplished.
In addition to our Sunday morning services, did you know that there is an Hispanic church meeting three times per week? There’s also an African American church meeting on Sunday nights (you should hear their music and prayers – very uplifting). On Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday nights there are recovery meetings and on the second and forth Saturday of every month, there’s a Soulful Saturday service for the recovery folks who enjoy hotdogs and bingo after the service. We have a men’s and women’s clothes closet that is open every Monday night where we distribute hundreds of articles of donated clothing, shoes and personal care kits. We have a food co-op that’s open the 4th Saturday morning of every month. A Women’s Bible Study meets every Wednesday night. A Girl Scout Troop meets in our Children’s Room and we house Dr. Joan Teach of the Community Resource Center where adults, students and families can find information and support regarding their learning differences (i.e., ADHD). One hundred pre-school children attend our award-winning child-development center, which has 30 full-time employees (mostly highly acclaimed teachers who have been there for years). I’m not sure but I think I will miss their silly squealing, laughter, and chattering the most – the children’s that is – not the teachers, although they will be missed too!
Yep, my time has come. I’m moving on to be recycled and turned into something clean and new - kind of like my replacement. I’ll miss this old place, this corner at Briarwood and N. Druid Hills, this town and especially these people who call Brookhaven home. I hope you’ll come by sometime – you’re welcome whenever you want to visit. You won’t be met by someone forcing a Bible into your hand or asking you to join. Instead, you’ll be met with a smile, possibly a welcoming handshake and a few introductions. You’ll get to sit on some old wooden pews that make funny noises (even though everyone sits on long seat cushions) and soak in the beautiful stained-glass windows that have been here almost as long as I have. You can listen to some beautiful music sung by a very small choir, accompanied by an amazing piano and organ player (you should hear those pipes. They shake my core and rock the whole building)! The time will go by fast and then you’ll be on your way – kind of like me. But . . . come back to visit, to participate, or just to silently pray. And, if you decide to stick around, you’ll not only see a world go by, you’ll make a difference in the community, just like I did. Enjoy!
The Discernment Committee shared the results of their work over the last eight months at a congregational gathering on January 27. During their many meetings, the over-arching prayer guiding committee discussions has been the desire to understand what God wants to see happen at Brookhaven UMC. A change in direction is required. The long-term trends of declining membership and sub-par finances have raised the question of the church’s viability going forward. While there has been incremental growth to celebrate of late, the critical situation of the church requires something more impactful and immediate if the church is going to continue. The committee considered a host of possibilities ranging from adoption by a larger church to partnership with other congregations. None of these options proved viable. Officials from the North Georgia United Methodist Conference were consulted. Sister churches were visited. Neighborhood planners were interviewed. The way forward revealed itself as conversations began to center on the possibility of establishing Brookhaven UMC as a Teaching Parish connected to Candler School of Theology. Along with our people, our church’s location is our most valuable asset. With a parsonage next door, Brookhaven offers a wonderful location for ministers in training to begin learning the art of pastoring. Beginning in July of 2019, Brookhaven will have a student pastor appointed to lead worship, offer the sacraments and assist the congregation in ministering and making new disciples for Jesus Christ. Beginning in July of 2019, the church will accept an enhanced mission of nurturing and shaping new pastors for the North Georgia Conference of the United Methodist Church.
This coming change in pastoral leadership is the FIRST STEP of a three part plan to provide for the ongoing viability of the church. The SECOND STEP is already underway and will be expanded. Underutilized space in our building will become available for like minded individuals and groups committed to being part of the Brookhaven area. Already two different congregations are making use of our sanctuary during times it is not being used by our congregational community. The Discernment Committee envisions a robust community center serving needs of the Brookhaven community. All of this will produce additional revenue streams that will assist with our financial budget.
The THIRD STEP of the committee’s plans addresses several areas. There will be an expanded Assimilation program, headed by Beth Grimes. This project will actively address the welcoming and follow-up of guests, as well as signage changes for easier access to our building. Changes to the current style of worship will be considered to make the service more accessible and inviting.
The committee has been prayerfully seeking ways to ensure the continuance of Brookhaven’s ministries and outreach. What is happening is a significant change, but it is a necessary one, and one we believe is blessed by God. It allows our successful CDC to continue its mission of providing quality child care without interruption. It allows the congregation to continue to have a place for worship and from which to reach out to the community. The change values the wisdom contained in our church and its members by trusting them with the shaping of beginning pastors. The North Druid Hills Corridor Plan for Brookhaven makes it clear that our church will become even more visible as a part of the neighborhood going forward. New construction will continue throughout the area. Brookhaven will continue to be here to proclaim its mission to make disciples for Jesus Christ. We invite you to join us.
JOIN US FOR A THANKSGIVING DINNER AT 11:30AM ON Thursday, November 22nd in the Fellowship Hall. Sign up at church on the bulletin board sign up sheet or contact Dennis Kitchens.
BE A PART OF US
Please return your giving card by the end of November for 2019
BLESSING OF THE ANIMALS ~ OCTOBER 7TH
Our next Ladies Group Luncheon will be Saturday, July 28th at 12 noon. We will meet at southbound 5394 Peachtree Rd, Chamblee, GA 30341. Please contact Casey for more information.
Our next Ladies Group Luncheon will be Saturday, June 30th at 12 noon. We will meet at the 57th Fighter Group Restaurant ~ 3829 Clairmont Road, 30341. Please contact Casey for more information. The57threstaurant.com
Let's do lunch ~ june 10th
MEMBERS OF THE BROOKHAVEN ZooMC WANT TO TRAVEL WITH YOU
We want to try out a fun idea for the summer. Here are members of Brookhaven ZooMC: Jonah the seal, Daniel the lion, Roberto the rhino and Elly the elephant. We want to invite you to take one of them along with you during your summer travels. Then take a picture of them enjoying your special location: maybe at the beach, maybe at a park, maybe somewhere exotic, maybe somewhere every day. Just take a photo of them having a great time. We’ll develop a special bulletin board and post the pictures of summer fun with the Brookhaven Zoomc gang. Be sure to let us know where the picture is taken! Please message or email your photos to us! Just how far can the Zoo take us? In between travels they will be staying with Nancy in the church office.
Jonah (the seal) Daniel (the lion) Roberto (the Rhino) Elly (the elephant)
On Sunday, March 18th the Confirmation Class will travel to the Breman Museum to hear the testimony of Tosia Schneider, survivor of the Holocaust. Tosia Schneider will be speaking as part of the “Bearing Witness” program of the museum. This Holocaust oral history event is free and open to the public. Other congregation members are welcome to come. We will join for a quick lunch together following church and drive over to the museum for the event which begins at 2:00 pm. https://www.thebreman.org/Events/03-18-2018-Bearing-Witness-Tosia-Schneider
Souper Bowl Sunday Fellowship Luncheon
On February 4th. Join us for Soup, Salad & a Beverage
$6 – Adult/$3 – Children OR 1 quart of soup for $6
Show your football spirit & wear your favorite team colors or jersey to church
For more information, please contact Eva via email at email@example.com
ADVENT AT BROOKHAVEN UMC
The stable slowly gains an audience over the Season of Advent, as a variety of figures make their way to the place where the “in-breaking” of God into history will occur on Christmas Day. Members of the Brookhaven congregation are invited to add their own figurines as representatives of themselves seeking the birth of peace, hope, joy and love in their own lives.
AND CAROLS ~ DECEMBER 10TH