Newsletter 2022-10-05: May God’s face shine upon you
We began this autumnal month of October with a celebration of World Communion Sunday and will end it with All Saints Sunday, a reminder that we are part of a family so wide, varied beyond the telling, a body of people that extends even beyond the bounds of time into that great cloud of witnesses. There is no one way to belong to God because we all belong to God, and the angelic face is further revealed in the stranger. I am so grateful for this sacred invitation to witness God in neighbors and strangers, because it fundamentally reshapes our image of God. This month, I invite you to engage deeply in the life of our community, so you can witness the divine face in others, as our theologies of God are stretched and rewoven. On World Communion Sunday, we broke bread with the thought of places around the world engaged in the struggle for liberation—places like Iran, Ukraine, and Nicaragua.
We invite you to give of your time, talent, and treasure this month, not simply as a spiritual practice, but because when we show up in the community to worship, fire up our theological imaginations, break bread together, and serve the wider world, we encounter God. To better understand some of the many opportunities through which you can offer your time and talents, contact Lynda Voran, our Volunteer Coordinator.
In places of struggle and stories of heartbreak, we see God. We witness the divine face in the joy of resistance and a crowded table set for all. I trust it is exactly what we need for this leg of the journey—may God’s face shine upon you.
LaTayna Purnell, Associate Pastor
Houston Mennonite Church
Sunday Worship at 10 AM (map)
In-person at Houston Mennonite Church (HMC)
Off-site Connectivity (meeting ID: 910 835 693 )
Zoom Online Video Meeting, or
Zoom Dial-in: 346-248-7799
Thursday Zoom Hangout from 7-9 PM
Sunday, Oct. 9
Sermon: Your Place at the Table
For whom is there a place at the table? To whom is an invitation sent? Invite the poor. Invite the differently abled. The lame. The blind. Invite the people who have no place in society and no way to repay your hospitality. Jesus does not say: everyone has a place at God’s table -- though we know this to be true. Instead, Jesus specifically lists those whom society has marginalized, ostracized, and thrown away.
Second Hour: New church directory introduction and sign-up
HMC plans to use a new online system, ChurchTrac, which should improve maintenance and access of the directory (yes, printed copies can still be made)
Access the new system at hmc.churchtrac.com on any internet capable device
The site is functional, but also still in progress
You can create your account any time, but cannot access the directory until the HMC admin grants permission (security permissions must be granted)
Have questions about the new system? Be sure to join us on Sunday during Second Hour
Saturday, Oct. 15
Work Day at HMC from 8 AM to 1 PM (come and go as available)
Join us to help clean-up and fix various things around the building and its premises
There are ways for everyone to help!
Have a green thumb? Handy with tools? Like to clean? Good at keeping folks hydrated and rested? Want to pick weeds?
If you're willing to help, there will be a way for you to contribute!
If you can, let Mitch and/or Gerald know when you may join, so they can plan projects better (not required, just helpful)
Sunday, Oct. 16
Guest preacher, Bill Ogden, Faith Liaison for Memorial Assistance Ministries
2nd Hour Transition Conversation: “Values: What’s Mennonite About Being Mennonite?”
Care Team Meeting on Zoom at 3 PM
Monday, Oct. 17
Church Council Meeting on Zoom at 7 PM
Saturday, Oct. 22
Games Night & Snackluck from 6-9 PM at HMC
Bring your favorite games and something yummy to share (and a friend or two) for a fun-filled evening!
Use Facebook? RSVP to the event on our HMC Community Facebook Group
Sunday, Oct. 30
"Thanksgiving Meal in a Bag" Collection Begins for East Spring Branch Food Pantry
Have someone you would like to remember, celebrate, and/or share? Start thinking and preparing now.
Resources to love yourself and your church family
Need to make any changes? Please try to find your own replacements and then contact Lynda Voran with updates.
HMC Tree Cut-down
This week (Monday) one of the old HMC trees was cut down.
A few pictures of this are available by clicking here.
The rot in the middle of the tree helps explain why we've had so many limbs down from this tree lately. Fortunately, the Stewardship Team took care of it before someone was hurt!
Resources to help you grow as a follower of Jesus
Mennonite Healthcare Fellowship (MHF) 2022 Annual Gathering
MCC's Welcoming Place in Akron, PA, October 14th-16th, 2022
Coming Together at the Well - Renewal Through Exploring the Five Life Standards
A weekend of refreshment, fellowship, worship, and deep conversations with your fellow Anabaptist healthcare providers in a beautifully wooded setting!
Details and registration available online here.
Mennonite Disaster Services (MDS) On The Level - September Edition
The house building project near McAllen, TX is in urgent need of volunteers beginning mid-October through mid-November. Please relay this information to persons within your circle of influence who might be willing to volunteer, or might know someone who would be willing to help. To learn more information and to volunteer, see the Mennonite Disaster Service Website.
For the months of October - December 2022, MDS is offering financial travel assistance for anyone who serves for a week or more in McAllen, Texas or Jennings, Louisiana. Contact Deanna Frey (firstname.lastname@example.org) or call 1-800-241-8111 with any questions or to schedule a week.
MC USA Executive Board takes action in response to denominational feedback
By MC USA staff
The Executive Board of Mennonite Church USA (MC USA) gathered in San Antonio, Texas, Sept. 29-Oct. 1, 2022, for its first meeting since the Special Session of the Delegate Assembly this spring. Executive Board members adopted a new resolutions process, responded to the actions of the Delegate Assembly, and proposed a new three-year cycle for future Delegate Assemblies. They also discussed shifting paradigms impacting the denomination’s approach to missions.
Anabaptism at 500 project kicks off with conference
By MC USA staff with input from John Roth
Work has officially begun on the first ever Anabaptist Bible to be published by MennoMedia in time for the 500th anniversary of Anabaptism in 2025. “This project is an invitation for the Anabaptist churches to gather and listen to and through the Incarnate Word – Jesus,” said Sue Park-Hur, Mennonite Church USA’s director of racial/ethnic engagement, who participated in the conference. “I’m excited that the leaders of this project are committed to the challenging work of including diverse voices of Anabaptist groups.”
Learn how you can be involved in Anabaptism at 500 (many opportunities available), visit mennomedia.org/anabaptism-at-500.
Offering / Giving
Go Electronic: Give online by clicking here or the button below. Mail Checks to our building at :
Houston Mennonite Church Attn: Treasurer 1231 Wirt Road Houston, TX 77055-6852
Houston Mennonite Staff
Pastor (Transitional): Lee Lever
Pastor (Associate): LaTayna Purnell
Administrative Assistant: Clarke Ohlendorf
Original Email: https://mailchi.mp/4769da03382f/please-read-your-hmc-newsletter-20187142