Affirmation of Welcome
Reformation, a congregation of Christ's Church, welcomes everyone to join with us in a journey of faith. We are committed to providing worship, programs, ministries and pastoral care to all, regardless of religious background, age, color, ability, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, economic status, or national origin. Everyone is welcome in this place, where the love of God is the foundation of all that we say and do!
December 2018
The Reporter
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Pastor's Perspective

We are in the midst of our holiday season. We're digesting our turkey and preparing for Christmas. By the time you read this letter, Christmas decorations at church will be up, and we will have already celebrated the first Sunday of Advent ( December 2nd), so we will have started our one service Sundays. I'd like to share with y'all how we got here.

Several months ago, if you will recall, Reformation's Worship and Music Committee put together a task force to create and implement a survey of the congregation to see where WE were regarding worship. Now this is raw data, but I would like to share some of the info we received from the survey. Here are some interesting facts that came up; 48% preferred our "blended" service, 29% preferred our informal worship, 12% preferred the classic worship, and for 11% it didn't matter. We also learned that 72% preferred the 10:00 time, and 68% liked our single Sunday service in the Summer. So, with that info and after experiencing the overwhelming success of this past summer's worship services, at our last congregational meeting, Reformation voted to go to one service. I'm am excited about this prospect and for the energy and growth that will continue at Reformation.

There certainly has been great excitement expressed over this decision. The energy that we experienced this summer can now be experienced year round! This also means, as we did during the summer, we all have to step forward when called upon by the Worship and Music Committee. Whether it's singing, playing and instrument, ushering, lecturing, reading or assisting, we all need to participate in the liturgy - the work of the people. We need to continue the excitement for our one service, yes, but several have expressed to me somethings even beyond that. Someone approached me and said "Now, since we have one service and it will end at 11:00, maybe we can move our committee meetings to Sunday after church - like some other churches do - and I can join some committees. We're all so busy during the week." I didn't even think of that one. Finally, and maybe even the more important one, as one of our older members said, "Now I get to worship with, and get to know some of our newer members. Isn't that what a church family's about?" Amen, and amen!

So, as we embrace this new beginning in Advent, and move into the blessed holidays, I would like to say to all my Reformation family, "I hope your Thanksgiving was full of love and warmth, and may all y'all have a very Merry Christmas!" See you at worship!

Pastor Tim
Prayers of the Church
OUR SICK and HOMEBOUND : Tetia Garren, Tracy Hamiter, Louise Meetze, Katie Westbrook, Dot Perry, Christine White; Hank & Barbara Prosser & Bobbie Black,  Emmy Reeves; Landon Derrick; Dot Swing; James Dekle; Joyce Steele (aunt of Gloria Preslar); Darryl Thompson; Gary Smith (brother of Gloria Preslar); Paul Swing; Amy Preslar (daughter of Gloria Preslar) ; Jeff Harrell ; Carolyn Gulledge (mother of Wendell Gulledge) & Lindsay Hawkins
Treasurer's Report
October, 2018

Offerings needed to cover October expenses
Offerings received in October 
October deficit 

2018 Year to Date Summary

Offerings needed to cover actual YTD exp
Offerings received YTD
$ 136,144
YTD deficit
- $29,794
From Council President
As we begin the New Church Calendar, I want to make you aware of a few things.
I want to thank all of you who attended the Congregational Meeting in November. The budget for 2019 was approved! If you would like a copy of the budget please give Mikita, in the church office, a call. I also want to CONGRATULATE the newly elected Council Members, Nominating Committee, Endowment Committee and Synod representatives and express my sincere appreciation for your willingness to serve. The challenge for all who attend the meeting was to consider whether they could increase their contributions.
We have an active offer on the parsonage that is well with in the budget. The prospective buyers made the offer contingent on the sale of their current home. The price keeps us well within our budget determined in our previous Congregational Meeting. The parsonage is still being shown and other offers will be considered if offered.
Beginning with the first Sunday in Advent, December 2nd we will have one service. There was much positive feedback from you after completing the summer services and a strong desire to go to one service. Sunday school at 9:00, Worship Service at 10:00, and Fellowship immediately following the service.
Between November 25th and December 16th, we will be collecting a Love Offering to show our appreciation to the church staff. You may place your donation in the offering plate or give it directly to Sam Ruff or Paula Prosser. Church Council thought that it would be nice to show our appreciation with a monetary gesture.
Finally, I want wish each of you a most blessed Advent Season filled with all the wonder and joy of the Season!
Paula Prosser, Council President
Begining December 2nd
Conventional wisdom is that stewardship appeals should not be paired with the budget process. This is not a full on stewardship appeal and but I do believe that Reformation members and friends are already highly committed to the work Reformation does and who we are. However, we may not have done a very good job keeping you informed as to the financial needs. The budget process does just that.

Giving is such a personal decision and is usually based on financially ability, personal priorities and most importantly, your sense of living in thankfulness and generosity. As good stewards of what God has given us, we try to find ways to share our gifts in a way that lifts up others. Even something as simple as redirecting what we spend on drive thru food will make a huge difference.

If you attended the congregational meeting Sunday November 11th, you know that we, as a congregation, made a commitment to eliminating the recurring deficit. If you were not there, here are the highpoints:
  • Not resolving the deficit now will eventually require cutbacks in (already limited) personnel in a way that will adversely affect the mission of the church.
  • In passing the 2019 budget, we are encouraging those who are currently giving regularly to consider increasing their current level of giving by 10%-15%.
  • Encourage those who do not contribute regularly now to begin doing so with a small but regular amount.
  • Council (and treasurer) will keep the congregation informed about our financial health throughout the year not just at budget time.
  • While some of the proceeds from the (future) sale of the parsonage will be used to catch up with past year deficits, we cannot use these funds to cover ongoing deficits. We must operate from income from the current year.
  • All are encouraged to make special year end gifts over and above usual giving.
  • The current $52,165.11 deficit (as of 9/30/2018) is not an unmanageable problem if we see the solution as the many $10-$20-$50 additional gifts that we can make throughout the year.
I know that a common complaint about churches today is that "they are always asking for money".....and yes we are asking for money. Financial support through giving is essential to our mission and enables us to be here as a safe refuge to those who have been abused by the "church", to reach out and foster social justice, to remain a center of community life and to worship just as we are.
RLC is a beacon of hope and agent of change to many people in our community, to other churches in our faith community and to many who work to change injustices and inequalities in our world.
Qualified IRA Tax Free Distributions
If you or someone you know is 70 ½ with a qualifying IRA, you can make a tax free withdrawal as a direct gift to Reformation even if you do not itemize. Consult with your tax advisor to get advice specific to your tax situation.
December 1, Jeffery Schwalk
December 1, Brandy Layne
December 2, Mary Alice Winston
December 3, Jerry Trowell
December 3, George Black
December 3, Brett Birindelli
December 5, Constance Pool
December 5 ,Brian Lorimer
December 7, Chad Harmon
December 7, Jennie Roof
December 8, Harry Hawkins
December 8, Callie Hall
December 10, Caroline Ward
December 11,  Mikita Showers 
December 14, Jessica Ksor
December 18, Ada Collette Clark
December 19, Danyell Ritchie
December 22, Anthony Porter
December 26, Iva Lucretia (Tetia) Garren
December 28, Tina Dennis
December 31, Beth Bandy
December 31, Elaine Palmer
December 31, Paul Bouknight
December 31, Ashley Byrd & Rebecca McCorkle

Buy Tickets HERE.
Who's Serving in December?
Mustard Seed Thought
I remember sitting in a New Testament class at seminary, and after giving an answer that saw Jesus as one who challenged the social injustice he saw, the professor told me, "Mr. Bupp, somewhere along the line your are going to have to make a decision. Do you want to be a prophet or a pastor? If you are leaning toward prophet, review their job description and life longevity. I don't want to discourage you, I just want you to be aware."

That day the prof was not talking about our modern perception of prophet as one who predicts the future. Rather, he understood they were the ones who spoke to the injustice they saw in society, and pointed out the path such behavior could lead to. What the prof was saying, calling for social justice in that way may not be the most rewarding career. Look at prophets throughout history, Amos, Jeremiah, Micah, Eugene V. Debbs, Bonhoeffer, Mahatma Gandhi, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Malcom X, and so on. All pointed out social injustice and all were either persecuted of killed. That's what he was pointing out.

My problem is that I cannot look at the Tanach - our Old Testament - or Jesus' story without seeing social justice being addressed. So, I have never seen any separation from prophet to pastor. If I was going to preach the prophets or Jesus, how could I not address social justice? Which leads me to my Mustard Seed Thought.

That is why when our leaders' actions reveal life is no longer priceless, because our president has inadvertently put a price on life. The price was named when he doubled down that $100 billion and up that Saudi Arabia has offered us to purchase military equipment wasn't worth risking if we break our silence on the political murder of the news reporter, Jamal Khashoggi . As a disciple of Jesus, I have to speak out against this social injustice.

When, a year ago the leader of this country proclaimed there are good people on both sides of the Charlottesville White Supremest rally and the subsequent anti-supremest protest. Really!? They were chanting an old Nazi slogan! "Jews will not replace us!" And when we have such a horrific shooting as we did in the Pittsburgh PA synagogue, at Tree of Life, by an antisemitic individual, shouldn't our yearning for social justice remind our nation, how such leadership complacency in the Charlottesville rally opened doors for such misled individuals. When such events occur, how can I not speak up?

And when our leaders try to exclude transgender individuals. W riting transgender s out of existence by considering defining gender solely by a person's biological framework. While disregarding the mental, emotional, and physical health of these individuals, by also prohibited officials at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention from using the word " transgender " in official budget documents. How can I not speak out?

So, when I see such injustice, the whirlwinds of pastor and prophet join together and pull me - sometimes resisting and kicking - into their joint vortex. Yes professor, I know of the risk. I have examined the past prophets, including Jesus, but I must answer the call to join them along the banks of this river called faith.

Pastor Tim

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