Worshiping Sundays as an Online Faith Community

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10:00 a.m.:  Imagine Kids Message on Facebook Live
10:15 a.m.:  Online Worship on Facebook Premiere
11:00 a.m.:  Imagine Nation Youth Message
on Facebook Live
       
Church Office:  980-999-3500 

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Weekly Newsletter: July 30, 2020
The coronavirus caseload around the United States continues to soar.  Eighteen states set single-day case records in the past week pushing the country closer to breaking the national single-day record for new cases set less than two weeks ago.  With more than four million known infections and 146,300 deaths, hospitalizations also continue to climb.  This is why most churches, including Imagine Church, have resisted re-opening for indoor, in-person worship because of the three C's inherent in most worship services:  closed space, crowded places, and close-contact settings.
 
On Sunday, July 26, Imagine Church did host an indoor worship setting with the service of ordination for our ministerial intern, Heidi Chausse.  Attendance was limited to current and former Leadership Team members, those in Heidi's Life Group, her family and friends, members of the praise team, A/V techs, and the pastor.  The total attendance was less than 40.  All others were invited to worship online as the ordination was broadcast via Facebook Live.
 
As we return to online worship the next two Sundays, August 2 and 9, we wait, pray, evaluate, and listen.  If we find that we have created a safe environment for a limited number of worshipers (all wore face masks, used hand sanitizer, and the chapel was marked for proper social distancing), this will be the model we follow for a return to indoor, in-person worship when case numbers in the Carolinas begin to decline.  We are grateful to you for uniting with us during the challenges of this time and for honoring God with an earnest desire to continue making wise, careful choices until we can return to the personal gathering of Christ-followers of which Imagine Church is known.
 


Upcomin g Events:
 
Friday, July 31:
11:00 a.m. Church Staff Meeting via Zoom 
 
Sunday, August 2:  THIS SUNDAY!  
Early Sunday a.m.  Musical posts on Imagine Church Facebook Page
Watch for worship songs posted by Jennifer Tankersley, Minister of Music and Worship Arts, and the Imagine Praise Band
10:00 a.m.  Online Message for Imagine Kids on Facebook Live 
Message by Gregory Roberts, Minister to Children and Families
10:15 a.m.  Online Sunday Worship on Facebook Premiere
Message:  "What Story Do You Want to Tell?", by Pastor Bruce
Communion at Home
11:00 a.m.  Online Message for Imagine Nation Youth on Facebook Live 
Message by Tim Gunn, Minister of Imagine Nation Youth
      
Sunday, August 9:
Early Sunday a.m.  Musical posts on Imagine Church Facebook Page 
Watch for worship songs posted by Jennifer Tankersley, Minister of Music and Worship Arts, and the Imagine Praise Band
10:00 a.m.  Online Message for Imagine Kids on Facebook Live
Message by Gregory Roberts, Minister to Children and Families  
10:15 a.m.  Online Sunday Worship on Facebook Premiere
Message:  "What Story Do You Want to Tell?", Part 2, by Pastor Bruce
11:00 a.m.  Online Message for Imagine Nation Youth on Facebook Live
Message by Tim Gunn, Minister of Imagine Nation Youth
 
     
 
In This Issue
Imagine Church Devotional

" Thank You, God"
 
Every Friday in the early evening, an old man walked from his house down to the ocean carrying a bucket of shrimp.  As the sun started its descent and the evening waves gently lapped the shore, he walked to the end of the pier and reached in his bucket of shrimp and began to feed the birds who were already there waiting for him.  Slowly, intentionally, he distributed the contents of his bucket, as he did every Friday evening, with the sun slipping down over the horizon.
 
What was he doing there?  He was saying thank you.
 
His name was Captain Eddie Rickenbacker.  Years before, in October, 1942, President Roosevelt dispatched Captain Rickenbacker with a special message to General MacArthur who was planning American strategy in the Pacific theater of World War II.  But the B-17 became lost, ran out of fuel, and went down.  The crew of eight made it into two lifeboats and then began a harrowing, desperate fight to survive the sun, sharks, waves, and most of all, hunger.
 
When it seemed that the end had come and there was no hope, when they had prayed all they could pray, Captain Rickenbacker was asleep in the raft with his cap over his eyes.  He felt something.  A bird had lit on his head.  He knew if he could catch it, they would survive.  He did.  And they ate it.  They used its entrails for bait.  They survived.
 
And so every Friday of his life, the old captain, now hunched over, but still proud, took his bucket of shrimp and fed the birds and said, "Thank you."
 
In a culture of overabundance, I hope we never lose the virtue of thankfulness.  As the young mother responded to the question, "What caused you to come to believe in God?", she said, "I had to have somebody to thank!"
 
Eddie Rickenbacker said there was one question about his experience on the lifeboat that was never answered.  What was that seagull doing there, hundreds of miles from land, anyway?
 
Thank you, God.
 
 
In the name of the One who can do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine,
Bruce Jones, Pastor and Co-Creator,
Imagine Church of the Carolinas
Heidi Chausse Ordained into Christian Ministry
 
It was one of the most moving occasions of worship we have had at Imagine Church, and although only around forty persons were in the chapel, many more around the country watched online as Imagine Church's long-time ministerial intern, Heidi Chausse, was ordained into the Christian ministry by the International Council of Community Churches on Sunday, July 26.  This week, Heidi is preparing for her move to Ohio where she will become Resident Chaplain at Cincinnati's Children's Hospital.  Heidi has earned her M.Div, from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary and has served Imagine Church for two and one-half years with distinction, devotion, and loyalty.  We will follow her career with great interest, and we will always hold a special place for her in the heart and history of our church family.  Heidi's new contact info is:
3503 Michigan Avenue, 2B, Cincinnati, OH, 45208
Email:  HChausse@gmail.com 
Worship This Week
 
After a limited gathering in the chapel last Sunday for Heidi's ordination, we will return to online worship the next two Sundays, August 2 and 9, as we wait, evaluate, watch, and pray.  We took every precaution in the plan developed by our staff and Leadership Team, and the folks attending did a wonderful job of wearing masks and social distancing.  Our online worship at 10:15 a.m. this Sunday, August 2, will include "communion at home" (see article below), and Bruce will introduce a new series titled "What Story Do You Want to Tell?".  We believe you will be moved by the message, and also, be sure to watch for the music Jennifer will be posting early Sunday morning.  Gregory will speak to the Imagine Kids at 10:00 and Tim to our Imagine Nation Youth at 11:00, all on the Imagine Church Facebook page.  Worship with us as an online faith community this Sunday!
Communion at Home
 
You are invited to share in "communion at home" when Pastor Bruce leads us in this time of online worship on Facebook this Sunday, August 2, beginning at 10:15 a.m.
 
Remembering that the bread and the cup used for communion are symbols that we take in remembrance of what Jesus did for us, here are some tips to help you be better prepared for communion on Sunday:
  • Please DO NOT feel the need to make a trip to the grocery store.
  • Simply search your panty for something that will symbolize the body of Christ. Bread, crackers, or even flaked cereal are good options for this.
  • Then, look in your refrigerator to find something that will symbolize the blood that Christ shed for you. You do not need to use grape juice or wine. In fact, any beverage will suffice for this portion of communion.
  • Try to prepare your elements ahead of time so they are ready when Pastor Bruce begins communion. He will provide step by step instructions for what to do with the elements you've prepared.
Beginning to Use the New Church Land!
 
Bruce has had a couple of gatherings he's calling a church-wide life group, and Tim Gunn is planning an event for Imagine Nation Youth -- all on the church land at 5471 Highway 55, East, Lake Wylie.  It's becoming a creative solution to times and ways the church can be together when it is unsafe and unwise to cluster together indoors.  Watch the newsletter for information of ways and times we will be meeting on the new church property during the month of August!
Thank You for Your Continued Giving
 
Imagine Church is truly humbled and so very grateful to all of you who continue to give online or via mail despite not being able to congregate and worship in person.  If you are led to do so, tithes and offerings can be made online via credit or debit card, ACH check payment, or by mailing cash or check to our church office at:
 
 Imagine Church
13000 S. Tryon Street, Suite F-114
Charlotte, NC  28278
 
"You will be enriched in every way so that you can be generous on every occasion, and through us your generosity will result in thanksgiving to God."  (2 Corinthians 9:11)  
Be the Hands and Feet of Jesus
   
There are so many opportunities that exist for our church family to be the hands and feet of Jesus and to help others through various means of service right here in our community.  If you are aware of an opportunity that you would like to see highlighted in the newsletter, please email Kari DiDonato at her Imagine Church email: imaginechurch2014@gmail.com 
 
 
JULY'S OUTREACH OPPORTUNITY:

Children's Attention Home, Rock Hill


Located in York County, the Children's Attention Home has a mission to provide a safe and nurturing home for abused and neglected children.  They serve children in foster care and teens without reliable shelter, offering them temporary shelter, compassionate support, and individualized care.   Follow them on Facebook for positive posts, resources, fun activities for kids, and ways to engage with the Home during this time. They will be continuing to explore and post ways your family can still be involved in virtual events during this time of social distancing.   
   
Thank you, Imagine Church family, for having supported and for continuing to support the Children's Attention Home.  They depend heavily upon the contributions and donation by individuals, groups, churches, businesses, and corporations. You may continue to support the Home by providing meals for the children and staff, by purchasing items from their 'Current Needs' or 'Amazon Wish List', or by making a tax deductible financial contribution using these links below:
 
 
 
Children's Attention Home 
PO Box 2912 
Rock Hill, SC  29732 
Phone:  (803) 328-8871
Sharada Abraham: sabraham@attentionhome.org
 
Weekly Inspiration and Encouragement
 
Inspirational Song:
 
By: Hope Darst  
 
"This song is a prayer and a weapon; a prayer of peace over everything you are facing and a weapon of worship to defeat fear, depression, and doubt. God has promised you peace." ~Hope Darst
 
Submitted by:  Jennifer Tankersley,
Minister of Worship and the Arts 
 
 
 
Bible Verse of Encouragement: 
    
"Then they cried out to the Lord in their trouble, and he brought them out of their distress.  He stilled the storm to a whisper; the waves of the sea were hushed."  -Psalms 107:28-29
    
Prayers and Praises  
 
We are grateful to God to announce that Tammie Callahan has been pronounced cancer-free after surgery last week and a battle over the last nine months. Tammie is sister-in-law of Tyra Jones and is married to Tyra's brother, Tim.
 
Please continue to pray for:
 
Zach Preston
Bob Wujciak
Vaughn Dunn
Bill Tuberville (friend of Virginia Russell), Knoxville, TN
Mary Shrewsbury (sister of Ray Transou), Lerona, WV
Jerry Brownlee (father of Lydia Smith)
 
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Have a prayer request or praise item to share? Please email info@imaginechurchnow.org  so the church can join you in prayers and praise!
Imagine Kids

This past Sunday, Gregory and his family shared Part 4 of his "Jonah, the Huge Fish, and God" message series.  Be sure to tune in to Facebook Live at 10:00 a.m. this Sunday when Gregory will begin a new message series titled "The Adventures of Joseph, Son of Jacob" with Imagine Kids and their families.

Upcoming Events:
Please stay tuned for information about future Imagine Kids events.  
 

August Memory Verse
Parents, here is the memory verse for you to practice with your child(ren)!

Preschool and Elementary:
"You planned to harm me.  But God planned it for good.  He planned to do what is now being done.  He wanted to save many lives. "   
Genesis 50:20
 
Parents, if the entire verse is too long for your preschooler, have them learn the first part:
"You planned to harm me.  But God planned it for good."
 
 
 
Gregory Roberts | 704-502-3107 | imaginekids@imaginechurchnow.org  
   
Imagine Nation Youth
 
This past Sunday, Tim shared his message titled "Be Inspired" with Imagine Nation Youth and their families.  Be sure to tune in to Facebook Live this Sunday at 11:00 a.m. for Tim's next inspiring message. 
 
 
Upcoming Events:
 
Imagine Youth Event at Southpoint Beach Park in River Hills
We invite the youth to join in the fun THIS Saturday, August 1, from 4:00-7:00 p.m at Southpoint Beach Park in River Hills.  We'll cook up some burgers and hotdogs, and we will enjoy some outdoor activities like volleyball, boat rides, and much more.  Bring a friend, too!  But please RSVP to Tim (803-322-1113) by Friday, July 31, with the names of those planning to attend.
 
Directions:  Enter front gate of River Hills.  Turn RIGHT on Apple Orchard, then turn LEFT on Hamilton's Ferry, and drive straight until you see the parking lot on the left for Southpoint Beach Park. 

Youth Group Service on New Church Land
Stay tuned for more information about a youth group service that will be conducted on our new church property (with a visit to Pelican's for snoball treats) sometime in August.
 
Winter X-treme
Although we don't yet know who the headliner artist will be, please mark Winter X-Treme in your calendar for Dec. 27-30.  And please stay tuned for more information about this fun event!    
 
   
 
Please contact Tim Gunn with questions about either of these events.  
 
Tim Gunn |  803-322-1113  | youth@imaginechurchnow.org
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Happy Birthday!

We send heartfelt birthday greetings to these Imagine Church family members who have birthdays throughout the next two weeks:

Jennifer Tankersley
Jul 30
Lauren Flott
Aug 5
PJ Fronczkiewicz
Aug 7
Bob Hardee
Aug 7
Christina Winson
Aug 8
Pamela Bays
Aug 10
Grace Galeota
Aug 10
Brandon Strickler
Aug 10
Heather Gilkeson
Aug 13
Cooper Meehan
Aug 13


If you are wanting your name added to our birthday list, simply   send us a quick email at  info@imaginechurchnow.org ! We w ant to celebrate with you!
 
We give back and strive to make a difference in our community, city, and world.  We believe that we are called to reach out to our neighbors, both locally and globally, and to serve them in ways that make a difference.  That's Imagine Church! 
 
 
IMAGINE CHURCH
Simple Church:  Connect.  Grow.  Serve.