Hope Notes 7/6/17

July 6, 2017

Dear Friends of Hope,
I’ve been thinking about my brother this past week because we just hit the ‘one year since his death’ mark.  And I remembered something that happened when we went out to Nevada to see him last year.  As we stood talking on the porch, he pulled a little black notebook out of his shirt pocket.  It was a small, top spiral bound, cheap kind you get at Walmart. But what made me gasp was that it was identical to the one I always carry with ME!  We both use it to jot down thoughts, items needed, and other various snippets of information.  Bear in mind he moved away when I was four, we lived thousands of miles apart, and I’ve only been with him a handful of times…….and not for the past 27 years.  Was this a sibling thing?  Some freaky ‘black notebook’ gene in our shared DNA? Whatever the reason, it made me feel a connection to this brother of mine.
Although we shared the notebook alliance, we sadly did not share a belief in Jesus.  He was adamantly opposed to the things of God.  Didn’t want to hear any of that ‘Bible babble’ we tried to share.  I was amazed at how stubborn and hardened his heart was.  How could someone related to me feel so differently?  And then I remembered something – even Jesus had non-believing family members!  John 7:5 “For even his own brothers did not believe in him”.  That just seems incredible!  So I really shouldn’t be surprised that my little witness made no apparent difference in my brother’s thoughts.  Jesus was truly a perfect witness and yet many, including his own family members, did not believe.  If we read further about his brothers, we see that eventually they did believe and go on to become leaders and martyrs in the early church.  This should give us hope for our own families!  We should never give up witnessing and praying for them.  And if, like my brother, they died apparently unbelieving (only God knows what occurred during their last moments), we can trust them to the Judge of all the earth who will be perfectly just.

Because we trust and follow Jesus, we thought it would be a great idea to take a walk through the gospel of Luke and dig into the words of Jesus Himself.  We’ll find them challenging and full of insight.  And with open hearts, we’ll allow the Spirit to instruct us on how we should walk as Christians in this world.
Who is the Greatest? (Luke 22:24-32)  
Competition is everywhere in our lives.  Our kids join various teams and compete against one another.  As we grow up, we find many different playing fields, from social to academic to career. We talk about political races and our culture seems obsessed with sports.  Since we’re all well acquainted with trying to come out on top, we all understand the discussion that the disciples have with Jesus.  They wanted to know the pecking order of their group.  They tried to work it out among themselves.  But Jesus weighs in and changes the whole discussion, challenging them (and us) to a different definition of greatness.

Sunday’s worship service is available on CD immediately following the service for FREE. Pick up a copy for yourself or for anyone you would like to share Hope with.  Pastor Mark’s messages are also available on our website: www.hopechristianfellowship.org.

SUNDAY MORNING PRAYER TIME – 8:30 in Pastor Mark’s Office
Do you have a heart for prayer? Our Sunday morning prayer time is open to everyone. We pray for the services that morning and for the needs in the church. If you would like to participate, just show up!  “For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.” (Matthew 18:20)  Bob Baumiester leads this prayer time – feel free to contact him with any questions: rbaumiester@gmail.com.

PRAYER HUDDLE – 8:40 to 8:45 for Both Services
The prayer huddle is open to anyone who would like to come pray – but it is specifically intended for those who are serving on that Sunday.  So if you’re scheduled to be in kids’ ministry, greeting, in the tech booth, on worship team, or any other ministry role for a given Sunday, join us at 8:40 sharp in the Youth Room to pray together for God’s power in each of us.  We can do all things through Christ, and nothing of worth without Him, so let’s come together each Sunday to ask for God’s Spirit to fill us and use us!

JULY CHALLENGE VERSE – 1st John 5:11-12
“And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life.”

If you’re in the habit of coming each week to Bible Study, why not keep on coming in July and help us decorate for VBS?!  We’ll be decorating from 7:00 – 8:15 pm.

ANNUAL CHURCH PICNIC – Sunday, July 30th @ 5:00 pm
Gather together with your church family (bring your friends too!) for this ‘don’t miss’ event!  We’ll have water slides, a bouncy house, and lots of games.  Kids, wear your bathing suits and bring a towel.  Let’s not forget the food!  We’ll be serving hot dogs straight off the grill!  There is a signup sheet in the lobby for whatever side dish or dessert you’d like to bring.  There is also a signup sheet for ways to help out for a portion of the picnic.  Don’t worry, you’ll still have time to eat and visit!  The picnic only happens once each year; make sure you’re a part of it!

SUMMER CAFE NIGHT – Sunday August 13th @ 7:00
It’s an Ice Cream Social kind of night with entertainment provided by our own church family!  Mark your calendars now!  More information coming……

YOUNG ADULTS – 7:30 in Youth Room – First and Third Monday of every month
Anyone who has graduated high school up to their early thirties is welcome.  Contact Dave or Leah Hallahan at dmhallahan5@gmail.com. Childcare is provided.

GOD’S GIRLS WOMEN’S GROUP – 1st & 3rd Mondays at 7:00
Contact Mary Lebeau for more information at 856-316-6301 or marylebeau@verizon.net

MEN’S BREAKFAST  – 8:00 – 9:30 am – Second Saturday of Every Month
Come and join us for a delicious breakfast and a good time of fellowship/sharing with the men of Hope.  Feel free to bring a friend!  Open to men 18 and older.

Our middle school and high school groups meet right here at church! Come out for another amazing year as we grow closer together and closer to God!

PLEASE NOTE:  There will be NO Youth Group on Sunday nights until September.
July 14th – Six Flags
Jul 16-22 – Jr High Camp @ Delanco
Jul 30 – Aug 5 – Boston Trip
Aug 18 – Movie Night @ Hallahans’

Grow Groups is an opportunity for our middle and high school students to dig deeper into Gods word and the issues that are relevant to their lives.
PLEASE NOTE: Grow Groups are on hiatus for the summer.

Go Zone is our Sunday Morning kid’s service, planned especially for 1st – 5th graders. Our goal is to encourage the kids to live with their focus on “GOing for GOD, GOing for GROWTH, and GOing FOREVER!” This service includes worship, games, and exploring important biblical truths in fun and creative ways before heading off to Sunday school.
Follow HopeKids! Ministries on Facebook at: facebook.com/HCFHopeKids

MOVE UP SUNDAY – July 10th – This Sunday!
Attention parent’s of upcoming kindergartners! Sunday July 10th will be move up Sunday for kids transitioning into the next grade.  This year we are changing things up and having the kids going into kindergarten move up to the GoZone! instead of staying in the 4 & 5 year old class! Make sure you drop them off and register them in the GoZone room!

MAKER FUN FACTORY VBS – July 24th – 28th 
Hope Christian Fellowship’s Vacation Bible School, IS BACK from July 24th – 28th!  Are you ready for a wildly creative, inventive, and interactive adventure with God?  If you are, than you’ll love attending this year’s Maker Fun Factory VBS!   Where you’ll learn that you were created by God and built for a purpose! Come join us for a fun filled week!  Register today at http://www. hopechristianfellowship.org/ vbs-registration/

For the month of June, we averaged $5945 per week.  This brings our annual weekly giving average down significantly to $7685.  We are now almost exactly at our annual weekly giving target of $7675.  As we head into the summer, we’re asking everyone to please be as faithful and generous as you can with your investments into the work of God’s kingdom.  We have a big summer at Hope and we’re thankful both for the opportunities God gives as well as each person who partners with us through financial support.

During the month of July we will have collection bins at both entrances for donations of school supplies for the children of Kids Alley.  A list of supplies needed is on each bin.  Help equip these children  for the upcoming school year; no child should have to go to school without the materials they need!

They’re here!  We have a new system to collect our various communication cards
in just one spot instead of at  different locations around the church.  If you have a prayer request, you can fill out the orange  Prayer Request card and our Prayer Team will lift it up in prayer.  If anyone has a need or knows of someone in need, one way to let us know is to drop a yellow Needs Request card into the box.  Our guests can fill out the blue Visitor Card and drop it in the box.  To make it even easier, you will find all three cards right there on the box! Boxes are located at the front of the auditorium.

Make sure to check out Hope Share on our website – it’s a place to share things we no longer use and to look for things we need!  It’s easy to upload photos of items you’d like to give away and to search for that special item you just might need!

We make it easy to give as the Lord leads.  There are envelopes and a drop box in the back of the auditorium.  If you prefer to give electronically, we have online and texting options.  Just go to our website and check them out!  www.hopechristianfellowship.org

The New Testament has this wonderful ministry for the elders of a church – PRAYER. And we’d like to offer it to anyone who is in need of healing (physical or otherwise) or who needs the power of God to be at work in their lives in a special way.  If you or anyone you know would like to take advantage of this ministry, contact Pastor Mark to set up a time after one of our Sunday services for the elders to pray over you.

There are so many places to connect and serve here at Hope. There truly IS ‘something for everyone’ and we want to make it easy for you to know all the different options!  You can check out our Ministry and Service Opportunities brochure (on the glass tables and in the Resource Room) and also keep your eye on this section as we post any pressing needs.

From time to time, Hope changes gears on Wednesday nights and breaks into smaller groups.  The focus of these groups are different topics of interest that can help us take real steps forward in our walk with God. We’re going to be holding these workshops once again in September.  The elders are inviting anyone with teaching gifts who would like to lead a 4 week workshop to contact Pastor Mark and get an outline and topic to him by the end of August. That way, our Leadership Team can review and approve the teachers and topics and have a signup list available through August for participants in each workshop. For more info or questions, see Pastor Mark.

Nursery 9:00  —-TBA
Nursery 11:00 — TBA
Toddler 9:00 ——Morgan Frye, Leah Aureli, Bethany Gabriel
Toddler 11:00 —–(Need teachers), Natalie Mariani
Pre-K/K 9:00 —– Bill & Griffin McGinness, Libby LeBeau
Pre-K /K 11:00 —-Karen & Amanda Merriell
Ushers 9:00 ——-Joe Sambucci
Ushers 11:00 ——Bill Berry
Wed. Nursery —– None
Counters ———- -Kathy Berry, Wendy Devereaux
Greeters ———– Debbie Davis, Sharon Sambucci, Katrina Mariani, Greg Corroado

If you have a prayer request, please fill out a prayer request card and drop it in one of the Card Boxes located at the front of the auditorium (you can find the prayer request cards there) or use the “Contact Us Form” on our website: http://www.hopechristianfellowship.org/contact/.
If you have any questions or would like to join the Prayer Team, please contact Hap Cunningham: hapcunn01@gmail.com.
PLEASE NOTE: We would greatly appreciate it if you could keep the team updated on your request.  Situations can resolve or change for the better/worse. Praises are always welcome!  This will help our team know best how to pray for you.

An Imperfect Witness,