NORTHSIDE NOTES: March 30, 2016
| Pastoral Reflections
by James Lamkin
Easter Triduum...with Thanksgiving
Triduum is a three syllable word (
three days. It references the time from the evening of Maundy Thursday to the evening of Easter Sunday. It is the high-maintenance balloon note of Holy Week. And wow was it not wonderful at NDBC this year?
Here are a few of my gratitudes:
The festivities started pre-Triduum with Palm Sunday wranglers Mary Lou and Amanda and Joel who led the Children's Choir as they waved palms and sounded wonderful.
Then, Maundy Thursday's sacred movement and music blew us away with the choir's passion and presence. This was followed by Good Friday's three-hour hollow, but holy space that held us like a borrowed tomb. The seven homilists gave of themselves intimately and generously. I was especially proud of my young staff colleagues and seminarians, Anna Kate and Jeffrey. Plus, the music by Steve and Joel and Alan and Jeff composed a gripping lament. And as we moved on, Billie Davis moved in, so as to prepare the Paraments for later.
Holy Saturday was spent with the choir and string ensemble polishing pieces from the Messiah. Virginia Gilbert and the Flower Ministry Team worked their magic and turned the Chancel into a botanical garden of resurrection. I think landscape folk were busy in the church yard, too.
Then Easter Sunday! Len Willingham as director and Jeff McConnaughey as organist, along with the nine-piece string ensemble...were wind beneath the choir's wings. And the choir brought it! They were greater than the sum of their parts. (And if you missed it, their Hallelujah Chorus is on NDBC's Facebook page thanks to Brian Knight.) Plus, the nursery workers need a shout-out. They tended our kids while the rest of us reveled in Sunday's extravagance.
Even the kids' Easter egg hunt worked-out well. The impending rain held off, Mike Gregg's and Anna Kate's planning was spot-on, and a good time was had by all.
Last, but not least, I thank my staff colleagues. There's a lot that happens behind the scenes. With all the services to proof and print, with all the floors to clean and carpets to vacuum, and with all the synchronizing of work schedules...they all worked hard and extra.
Though the triduum's three days felt like three months...amongst it all, Easter happened...and continues to do so. Thank God.
by Rev. Dr. Michael L. Gregg
"Tidying Up the Church"
Be surrounded by the things you love.
I'm immersed in a book called
"The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up"
by Marie Kondo. Kondo is Japanese and has used the first parts of her last and first names to describe her methods of changing personal living spaces for the better. It is called the KonMari Method and it has become the catchphrase for the Japanese art of decluttering and organizing. She has a three-month backlog of organization clients and has sold over two million copies of her book. Her basic premise is "a dramatic reorganization of the home causes correspondingly dramatic changes in lifestyle and perspective. It is life transforming." She has a high success rate with her services and she claims that the results show that tidying has changed the way her clients think and approach life. She says it has even changed their futures. In essence, she is asserting, "when you put your house in order, you put your affairs and your past in order too." This makes it easier to see what you need in life and what you don't need. It makes it easier to see what makes you happy and what doesn't bring you joy. It helps you see what you should and should not do with your money, resources, and time. By using her method, you are only surrounded by the things you love.
Changing the church is difficult, so we rebound to old habits. Churches sometimes need to make drastic changes.
I am enamored with this unique book because I think it contains practical and psychological crossovers for the institutional church. First, she says that most decluttering methods cause "rebound." Think of it like a diet, if you don't see results, are not totally in the game, or are not transformed, you will put back on the pounds. Kondo is convinced that "people cannot change their habits without first changing their way of thinking." Tidying a little bit each day is too difficult for many people to maintain because more stuff comes in than goes out. Thus, people rebound into a cluttered lifestyle. However, if an entire house, a system of thinking is changed, the dramatic shift can transform the way people act and then help them maintain that change. Small efforts often peter out and motivation wanes. This can happen in churches because congregations don't often feel or see the results of their actions. Although change in churches is frequently slow, I contend the shifting landscape of our culture is calling churches to make some dramatic changes in the way they think and act. By drastically changing the way congregations think, churches might feel lighter, more passionate, and able to do the missions, projects, and services they so desperately desire to do.
Tidying the small things can distract us from the seismic shifts churches need to make.
Second, tidying can temporarily ease a troubled mind. But once that problem is over, the clutter returns. I resonate with Kondo's image describing this phenomenon because I was guilty of it in seminary and if you see my office desk you would claim that I am still working on it. Kondo, before writing a midterm, would have a strong desire to tidy her desk and her room. However, by doing so, she put off the real issue, the midterm, and found something else to ease her anxiety. Once the midterm was completed the true problem had been faced and it was tidied away. It is my sense this applies to congregations as churches often do little tasks to ease their anxieties about their long-term futures or about the shifting culture around them rather than focus on the bigger goals of intentional and purposeful change. Kondo claims that tidying is a tool, not a destination. The divine-centered destinations of churches must be faced, and sometimes the clutter of little and distracting things keep churches from seeing the bigger picture of where God is pointing them.
Churches should discard things and free up their joy.
Third, Kondo isn't a big fan of storage. She thinks, "Putting things away creates the illusion the clutter problem has been solved." But sooner or later, all the storage units are full and our rooms and homes are overflowing again with things that don't bring us joy. This is why decluttering begins with discarding. It is important for churches to discard the things in their ministries, buildings, and budgets that don't lead to the overall vision and mission of the church. Maybe it means getting rid of ministries teams or committees that aren't functioning; maybe it means using a different space in the church for worship; maybe it means only certain mission projects can receive funds; or maybe it means getting rid of that yellow pages ad. Ultimately, the goal of the KonMari Method is to put everything in its place and cross the finish line. Once Kondo fully tidied her home, she says that she was able to be happy and content. She was able to be in a space that "is graced only with those things that speak to [her] heart."
What might we as churchgoers and church leaders learn from the KonMari Method of decluttering and tidiness? Can we be called to change our ways of thinking so we don't rebound into old habits; look beyond the little things and really notice where our anxieties are; and not "store" activities, ministries, and objects that don't bring us joy? By doing these things, our churches might indeed find the life-changing magic of "tidying up."
NDBC Discernment Process on Same-Sex Marriage
by Don Janney, Church Moderator
On behalf of the Church Council, I want to thank all NDBC members who have participated in the on-going discussions that are part of our Discernment Process concerning same-sex marriage. We began these discussions on
February 14 with Rev. Tom Conley, who served as NDBC's Senior Minister from 1976 to 1991. The discussions continued on
March 13 with Dr. Diane Lipsett, who is Minister of Faith Formation and Education at Knollwood Baptist Church in Winston-Salem, NC and Assistant Professor of Religion at Salem College and who reviewed biblical texts concerning homosexuality and same-sex marriage during her visit with us. Our next session is scheduled for
April 3 during lunch in the Fellowship Hall after the morning worship service, when we will discuss the process that led to the NDBC Diaconate's unanimous adoption of the "Statement of Self-Expression" (copies of which are available in the Church Office) and positions taken by other like-minded churches regarding same-sex marriage.
As I have pointed out in earlier articles, our church's Vision Statement affirms our belief that "God calls us into Christian community with the challenge to discern and act upon the ongoing revelation of God in our time and place." In keeping with that affirmation, I encourage all members of NDBC to participate in the discussion on
April 3 with an open heart and an open mind as we continue to ponder whether our church should offer the ministry of marriage to same-sex couples within our congregation.
|Where Are You in God's Toolbox?
for the Nominating Committee
We are in the season of Nominations, where we commit to tasks in our church life and prayerfully consider the nomination of self and/or others to carry out the work of God in our lives, church, and world. Our committee members will be present in the Narthex to accept your nominations for Moderator, Diaconate, Finance Committee, and Personnel Committee. We also encourage you to volunteer on the many splendid ministry teams that help bring us such great opportunities for learning and loving. You may also link to the
on the Northside Drive Baptist Church website and in the Northside Notes. Consider this your invitation. I'd ask you to ponder these choices and help us complete this process by April 3.
I have my own "toolbox" story for you. This is the last hammer that my father used and treasured. It is a symbol for me of the great servant heart that lived in my father. Hear these descriptors: Son, Husband, Father, Sailor, Saddletree Maker, Salesman, TV/Radio Repairman, Farmer, Fisherman, Collector of Tools, Carpenter, Friend. He was also: Deacon, Song Leader, Sunday School Teacher, Chair of the Building Committee, Pastor, Mission Participant.
I believe my father lived out his mission in all of these jobs. In one of my favorite photos, Dad, in his overalls and baseball cap, stands on a ladder in a new church addition in upper state New York, oblivious to the camera, as he hammers a nail into a piece of wood.
It is God's work---whatever the job we do. There are many jobs at NDBC, and you represent all the tools we need. We ask for your prayerful and joyous commitment.
on your calendar if you would like to participate in serving a meal at the
Barbara J. Crafton Women's Center
in Marietta. The center provides a home where women in recovery from a drug or alcohol addiction can have a place to get back on their feet. The center has meetings for them to attend, job placement and help with the skills needed to rejoin the workforce. For more information about this mission opportunity contact Susan Harlan at 770-377-3869.
Soon there will be some renovations and repairs to the Narthex ceiling and flooring, and also to the flooring in the Nave and Chancel. Though it is uncertain as to the length of time the project will take, there is the probability that worship will be in the Chapel on some upcoming Sundays. W
e will let you know more as the project trajectory gets clearer; and we will notify the whole congregation.
| Triple E
"Crime Victims Advocacy Council (CVAC)"
w. Rev. Bruce Cook
April 11 @ 11 AM, Fellowship Hall
Jesus taught us how to love in the story of the Good Samaritan. The person shown love in the story was a crime victim. Over twenty-five years ago, Rev. Dr. B. Bruce Cook of Atlanta, GA. founded a nonprofit organization, called the
Crime Victims Advocacy Council
(CVAC), serving greater Atlanta. Rev. Cook will be speaking about CVAC and the book he has written, titled
Redeeming the Wounded
. The book outlines practical ways to enable the healing process for victims of violent crimes and ways to change our justice system to be more supportive of the victims of violent crimes.
|Youth Sunday, May 1, 2016
YOUTH SUNDAY LUNCHEON
The youth will lead the worship service on
Sunday, May 1
. We will also celebrate our graduating senior, Terrell Kilgore. You won't want to miss this worship experience! Lunch will be served after the worship service!
On the menu
: traditional Mexican food for $7.00 per person. To make a reservation for the luncheon, use the Welcome cards in the pew rack, call the church office at 404-237-8621, visit our website, or email your reservation to
no later than
Thursday noon, April 28
. This is a time to connect with the Youth and their families and graduating seniors. For more information contact Jeffrey Dunkerley (
ATTENTION COLLEGE & HIGH SCHOOL GRADUATES
Do you know a church or family member who will be graduating from High School or College this year? If so, we would like to announce his or her accomplishments in the
issue of the Pinnacle and as an insert in the Order of Worship for Youth Sunday. Please submit a head shot along with the graduation date, school name, type of diploma, and their next step (education or work) by
Friday, April 1
5. You may submit electronically to
to the attention of Renee Gamache; or stop by the church during business hours. (
Submissions after Friday, April 15, will only appear in post-Youth Sunday issues of the Pinnacle.)
| Church Work Day
Saturday, May 14, from 9 AM-1 PM
Mark your calendar! It is time for the next all-church clean up and work day. We have many different jobs that need some willing hands! Join us from 9 AM-1 PM on Saturday as we spruce up the inside of the church while others accomplish outside landscaping tasks. This is a great way to serve with your friends and family for a few meaningful hours. We will have the needed supplies ready; simply contact the church office to let us know you are participating. Childcare and snacks will be provided.
|Youth Island Adventure
Jeffrey Dunkerley, Director of Youth
& Young Adult Ministries
We escaped! The youth took on the challenge of breaking out of a room the last weekend of February. We managed to get off of the island before the volcano erupted. The rest of the night we played games and shared laughs over milkshakes. Thank you to all of the adults that helped make this event possible.
We are officially registered for Passport Camps this summer too. We will be going to Danville, VA, to participate in Passport Missions on
June 26-July 1
. If you or anyone you know would be interested in chaperoning this trip, please let me know.
SUNDAY, April 3
9:30 AM - Church School
10:25 AM - Children's Choirs Rehearsals
11:00 AM - Morning Worship
12:15 PM - Discussion & Luncheon on Discernment Process
TUESDAY, April 5
10:00 AM - Staff Meeting
WEDNESDAY, April 6
10:30 AM - Pastor's Bible Study
THURSDAY, April 7
7:00 PM - Prayer Shawl Ministry
7:30 PM - Sanctuary Choir Rehearsal
April 3, 2016
The next Church Council
meeting will be Monday,
April 18, at 7 PM,
in the Art & Soul
| GAS TURNED OFF FOR THE SUMMER
Off - April 30, 2016
Back On - TBD
As a cost savings to the church, the gas is turned off in the Spring and turned back on in the Fall. This is part of the summer savings program with Infinite Energy. We will have an electric water heater for use during those months.
The TLP is a Diaconate ministry. Each week's list contains the rotating names of three or four NDBC senior adults.
Gordon & Billie Davis
Nancy F. Davis
If you would like your name placed on our rotating TLP list, please give the church office a call.
Chance Cooper - 1
LeAnna Anantaraman - 3
Anne Hunt - 4
Linda Long - 4
Allen Abbott - 5
Dot Clark - 5
Greg Colson - 6
Jackie Hardin - 6
Kay Braswell - 6
Allison Blaisdell - 6
Letty Konenkamp - 8
Jennifer Sardone - 10
Mary Schwartz - 12
Brian Knight - 12
Zach Stines - 13
Robbye Taylor - 13
Suzanne Stearns - 13
Tim Whiffen - 14
Marjorie Rives - 14
Ken Brant - 16
Liam Collins - 16
Daniel Moore - 16
Dick Houston - 17
Hardy Pickering - 17
Ryan McClure - 17
Wilton Looney - 18
Jada Getsay - 20
Heather Bongers - 20
Theresa Goriczynski - 20
Dave Wooten - 21
Patti Clark - 21
Simon Goodhead - 21
Noah Davis - 23
Gerry Humphries - 30
| WEDNESDAY MORNING BIBLE STUDY
We meet weekly at 10:30 AM, in the church's Conference Room. We study the texts selected in the Revised Common Lectionary for the next Sunday. Large print editions are available each week and for the upcoming Sunday. Discussion is deep and wide and lively. All are invited.
| PRAYER SHAWL MINISTRY
Led by Susan Harlan
Every 1st & 3rdThursday
@ 7 PM in the Parlor
For more information call Susan Harlan at 770-377-3869.
(Retired Older Men
Every 3rd Tuesday of the month from 12 PM-1 PM
(bring your lunch money)!
1715 Howell Mill Rd
| CHILDREN'S CHOIRS REHEARSALS
The Cherub Choir
Children ages 2 through Kindergarten
from 10:25-10:50 AM
in the Room 103
The Celestial Choir
Children in grades 1-5
Ms. Mary Lou
from 10:25-10:50 AM
in Room 116
| TIRED PARENTS CLASS BREAKFAST
With all the crazy things going on in our lives each month, we wanted to create a time and space where you can fellowship and socialize with other tired parents. We will meet in the Fellowship Hall and share breakfast together once a month (4/10 & 5/8) during Church School. If you are still looking for a church school class, please join us!
| AT THE TABLE
In the Balcony of the Narthex after Worship
Don't want to get up before 9 AM? Join this class of young singles and couples in their 20s and 30s at the big table in the balcony of the Narthex after the worship service in an informal setting for snacks and coffee. We will gather around the table every Sunday to briefly examine the lectionary texts, deconstruct the sermon of the day, and fellowship together. We will then go to lunch together after class.
THE STAINED GLASS WINDOWS BOOK
A copy of the book is in the Narthex for previewing and the cost is only $30. To get your copy, call us at 404-237-8621 or email the church.
THE PAPERLESS PINNACLE
The Pinnacle is emailed as a link to the congregation and is available on the church website at www.northsidedrive.org.
If you would prefer not to receive the Pinnacle by U.S. mail, please call404-237-8621 or email us
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