A MESSAGE FROM BETSY
Some months ago, a friend asked if I had a strategy for pastoring in a pandemic. Very quickly I responded, "Of course. Throw spaghetti at the ceiling and see what sticks!" I was joking but it's not completely untrue. The pandemic has forced all of us to rethink our assumptions about how we gather, worship, learn, and serve. As a staff, we would brainstorm and give space to all the ideas that cropped up, knowing that the worst that could happen is that we tried something that didn't work. In other words, the spaghetti wouldn't stick and we'd move onto the next idea. Worship Under the Stars, Sacred Moments in the Sanctuary, Youth Vespers, Wednesday Word videos, Morning Devotionals, and Outdoor worship are all pieces of spaghetti we threw at the ceiling.

As we reopen the sanctuary and gather in more familiar ways, I can't help but give thanks for all the pandemic spaghetti -- both the things that stuck and the things that didn't stick. It allowed staff, leaders, and committees to ask new questions of their work and values and I hope that we've discovered some things that will stick around for years to come. Live-streaming our sanctuary worship service is one of those wonderful things that we'll take with us into the future. Not only has it allowed this community to continue worshipping together, but it's enabled our community to grow. Our worship numbers are higher than they were before the pandemic and we've got people across the country who are worshipping with us on Sunday mornings. The ripples of this community are able to travel further than they might have otherwise. What a gift! Similarly, we've had visitors at our outdoor worship service that may not have come otherwise. Worshipping publicly has been a public invitation to our neighbors to join us! Both of these things, I count among our pandemic spaghetti and I'm so grateful that as a community we've been able to try some things that we may never have thought of otherwise.

I encourage you to think about your own pandemic spaghetti. What did you try? What stuck? What did you discover that you may not have otherwise? What do you want to take with you into the future? In the excitement of gathering and traveling again, we risk missing the chance to reflect on the things we want to carry with us into the future. I hope you'll set aside some time this weekend to think about these questions.

Finally, I want to offer my thanks to those of you who have submitted stories for our Summer Mixtape sermon series. If you haven't submitted anything, I hope you'll take the time to offer your favorite Bible story (or two). I'll be preaching these stories over the summer. You can submit your information through this form.

Gratefully,
Betsy
THIS WEEK IN WORSHIP
Rev. Elizabeth Lyles Swetenburg will be
preaching a sermon titled Return to What?

You're invited to read Jeremiah 24:7 and Joel 2:13 and Zechariah 1:13 and Hosea 12:6
in preparation for Sunday.
REGISTER FOR WORSHIP
This Sunday at 8:30 a.m. (in-person indoor worship) and at 10 a.m. (in-person outdoor worship) we will offer two options for you to worship with us. You must REGISTER for the service. The 8:30 a.m. service will be a livestreamed service from the sanctuary, which we will continue to offer on our youtube page. You can register for this Sunday using the link below.

Registration is necessary for all Sunday morning, in-person worship opportunities. Masks and social distancing required.
BECOME A WORSHIP GREETER!

Have you been waiting to greet & welcome Northridge friends, guests, and newcomers back to Sanctuary Worship? If YES, then have we got an opportuntity for you!

Serving as a Sunday morning greeter is simple as 1-2-3:

  1. Be available and at the church narthex by 8:00AM with a warm smile and welcoming approach!
  2. Warmly welcome and assist by checking folks in as they enter the Bob-0-Link entrance for worship, then direct them to the ushers.
  3. After worship, direct folks to the exits to ensure that no one wanders through the building.

We’re all VERY appreciative and grateful for your support and service to Northridge as a GREETER as we once again begin to gather.

Gratefully,
Engagement & Connection Committee (E&C): 
Ray Chavez, Erin Bret, Kim Shuler & Kathy Watson 
DEACONS OFFER HOME COMMUNION MAY 23
HOME COMMUNION, a ministry of the Deacons, will resume on Sunday, May 23, and be offered each time communion occurs during the Sunday worship service.
If you are wanting to be served communion at home, please contact Barbara Rader.
SAVE THE DATE - FRIDAY EVENING, JUNE 4TH
The Engagement & Connection Committee invites you to SAVE THE DATE! Friday, June 4th for an outdoor evening concert with our own Doug Fenn and his band. More details to come soon.
FAITH FORMATION
Senior Celebration--Sunday May 23 at 10AM

We will celebrate the graduating seniors: Analise DuBose, Leo Giles, Jay Matney, Shay Smith, Lily Franz, and Hannah Wahl.

If you have any pictures or notes to put in their Senior Memory Books, please send to Emily Cox via email at emilyc@northridgepc.org. We will accept pictures and notes until May 15.
Northridge Kids at Outdoor Worship - A Pray-ground

The kids of Northridge are in for a treat at outdoor worship. There will be a developmentally appropriate, fun, and meaningful area to quietly play outside while simultaneously experiencing the worship service. In some faith formation circles, this is called a "pray-ground". This will consist of coloring stations, playdoh, sand, puzzles and more that will help keep little hands busy while they listen and learn about our worship service and the rituals that are a part of worship. Parents are encouraged to sit near the Northridge Kids area to keep an eye on their child and to allow for a natural flow in the worship service. Our childcare staff will be busy keeping things sanitized between kid usage to help prevent the spread of COVID, and are asked to keep a distance of six feet from the children to protect themselves and others. We are so excited to see and worship alongside our beloved and delightful Northridge Kids!
NORTHRIDGE VBS
SAVE THE FRIDAY EVENING DATES
Compassion Camp:
Friday evenings in July 
July 9, 16, and 23
from 5:30pm to 8:30pm

Vacation Bible School Registration is now live. There are limited spots, so please register as soon as possible. You may register for 1, 2, or 3 nights of VBS depending on your availability!

Also, I am excited to share that there will be a members only nursery during VBS. If you have a 1-3 year old who is not quite old enough for the classes, there is still a place for them! They will spend time playing with church friends in the nursery while parents have a night out.
To register a child for the nursery, please email Emily Cox at emilyc@northridgepc.org.
Adult Education
Bible Study: Tuesdays - 7:30 a.m.
Studying the Scripture for each coming Sunday. Join us!
Meeting ID: 954 9571 6184
Passcode: 027540


The Wired Word: Wednesdays - 7 p.m.
Christianity and a current event - a group discussion.
Topic: "Few Apple Users Choosing to Opt In to Allow Apps to Track Their Online Activity"
Meeting ID: 837 1620 1906
Passcode: 681172
AN INVITATION TO BIBLE STUDY:

To Members and friends of Northridge:
Your friends invite you to join us in a Bible Study of 2 Corinthians. We will read the familiar letter with fresh eyes, listening for what it tells us about being faithful in today’s culture. Our group began meeting when the Rev. Ben Dorr and the Rev. Susan Sytsma Bratt offered the congregation an opportunity to discuss the scripture for the upcoming worship service on Tuesday mornings. We still meet at the time they suggested: 7:30 am every Tuesday. Instead of discussing the upcoming scripture, we have been reading the New Testament. If you participated in this group before, you know it is a come when you can, leave when you must type of group. You can join – or leave anytime between 7:30 and 9 am. With ZOOM, you can log in from home!
We read a chapter each Tuesday, comparing the way different Bibles express the meaning. We also discuss what others have said in commentaries and recent publications. Presbyterian Women might remember the Reconciling Paul Bible study led by Deanna Hollas a few years ago. This could be one resource for our discussion of 2 Corinthians, but not the only one.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact
Tim Jernigan tjerni@aol.com
Pam Jordan  doglover.75206@gmail.com
John Karnowski jkarnowski8813@gmail.com
Nell Green gnell9296@gmail.com
Sandy Barron sbarron214@sbcglobal.net

Here is the ZOOM invitation:
Join Zoom Meeting
Meeting ID: 954 9571 6184
Password: 027540
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MISSION PARTNER NEWS
BOOKS! BOOKS! BOOKS!
Mission Committee will be leading a MAY BOOK DRIVE to collect new and used books for Presbyterian Children's Homes and Services, one of our long-time Mission Partners. The books will be given to children, youth, and parents who are on PCHAS campuses in Itasca and Waxahachie. Remember ... new or used books can be a shared treasure. SO ... before you run out to sell off the books you no longer want to keep, please consider sharing them through this Mission Committee May collection. Books may be dropped off at the church during Sunday worship or call the office to arrange a drop off time. Thank you Northridge!
CAMP NORTHRIDGE - COMING JULY 5th
CAMP NORTHRIDGE
JULY 5-JULY 23

Registration now open! Click here to register.
All Northridge families will be eligible to register one day early. 

Exciting news for our church! We are hosting Camp Northridge, summer day camp for church members and neighborhood children ages 4-10. Camp will be held July 5-23. This will be an awesome opportunity for our church to welcome young children and families. Please help spread the word to young families. Click here for a list of weekly camp offerings.

Follow us @CampNorthridge on Facebook and Instagram. If you have questions you can email us at:  CampNorthridge@gmail.com.

Laurie Bret, Director of Camp Northridge
Camp Northridge is seeking high school age teens to apply for a job with our program. We offer real work experience and pay for young job seekers, ages 15 and older. All applicants will need to fill out an application, be interviewed and provide references for this job. We are giving the youth of Northridge first opportunity to apply. If your Northridge teen is interested have them contact Laurie Bret via email: CampNorthridge@gmail.com before May 3rd. We will accept applications after this date but will open application process to the general public on May 5th. We look forward to hearing from our fantastic young people of Northridge!
FELLOWSHIP
Small Group Happenings at Northridge
 
We’re happy to announce that over 140 Northridgers are connecting and RE-connecting through our small group initiative. You’ve sat around the firepit or you’ve walked around the lake. You’ve shared some pizza, and you’ve shared some stories from our year apart. AND you’ve SEEN each other – in 3D – and connected in a way that is hard to achieve through a computer screen. Hopefully, you’ve also sensed the new energy rising at Northridge and have been able to imagine our bright future together.

If you’re interested in being a part of a Northridge small group, please contact Kim Shuler. And stay tuned for more fun Northridge Small Group happenings brought to you by the Engagement and Connection Committee!
MINISTRIES of the DEACONS
Northridge Meal Train Volunteers
Do you like to cook? Or maybe you have been the recipient of a Northridge Meal Train in the past and want to pay it forward.
To participate in providing meals to Northridge members through the Northridge Meal Train, contact Laura Olivo.

Have a need for meals? 
When you or your family member has a need for meals due to illness, the birth of a child, the death of a family member or other time of need, contact Laura Olivo.