The Witness
Volume 39, Issue 34
August 25, 2021
Travis has been out of town this week in order to begin his doctoral studies at Duke Divinity School. He plans to be at church this Sunday while Whitney brings the message.
Worship this Sunday, August 29th
Whitney's sermon is "An Uncomfortable Gift," and the scripture reference is Mark 12:38-44. Morning worship is at 8:45 and 11:00 AM, with virtual options. If you choose to worship virtually, you may access our livestream through our website or FB live. (Please note: our updated website will launch this Sunday; we hope to have livestream available, as usual, but if we have any technical difficulties through the new website, you may need to try Facebook.) Sunday School is at 9:50 AM, and we have classes for everyone.
Music Ministry Details:
  • Praise Team (6:30 PM) and Chancel Choir (7:30 PM) rehearsals are underway each Wednesday.
  • September 8th: "Steelin' Away" Youth Steel Drum Band rehearsals will begin (4:30 - 5:15 PM); Children's Choirs will also begin (6:15 PM).
  • September 19th: Handbell rehearsals and Youth Choir will begin (both at 5:00 PM); "Pandemonium" Adult Steel Drum Band rehearsals will also begin (6:00 - 6:45 PM).
  • See Chris Monroe with any questions or for more details.
Bible in a Year Reading
Read this week:
The Old Testament: 1 Samuel 14-20
The New Testament: Romans 12-16; 1 Corinthians 1-2
Old Testament Prophecy: Jeremiah 51-52; Lamentations 1-5
Psalms: 30-36
Meditate: But this I call to mind, and therefore I have hope:
The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases,
his mercies never come to an end;
they are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness. -Lamentations 3:21-23
Prayer: Thomas O. Chisholm battled illness and struggled with finding a job with meaning and purpose throughout his life. Throughout the difficulties and struggles, Chisholm said that the words of Lamentations 3 became precious to him. Eventually, he used these words and reminders to write the hymn, “Great is Thy Faithfulness.”
Great is Thy Faithfulness, O God my Father, There is no shadow of turning with Thee. Thou changest not, Thy compassions they fail not; as Thou hast been Thou forever wilt be.
Happy Hearts
Would you like to make a fall pumpkin decoration? Join the Happy Hearts for a "Make & Take" craft session at 1:30 PM on September 14th in the Small Dining Room. If you have a favorite old long sleeve shirt (perhaps a men's shirt), you can bring that to make the pumpkin. If not, no worries. Fall fabric will be available for you to select from. All supplies will be provided at no cost. A sample completed pumpkin can be viewed on the counter in the church office. Join us for an afternoon of fun and crafting. Bring a friend!
Thrive Student Ministry
Our Thrive Student ministry will soon be back to a regular, weekly, evening schedule of gatherings and opportunities.

Sunday Schedule (beginning Sunday, September 19th):     
4:00pm- Praise Band
           5:00pm- Youth Choir
           6:00pm- Snack Supper
           6:30pm- Extreme
Wednesday Schedule (beginning Wednesday, September 8th):
           4:30pm- Steel Drums
           5:30pm- Family Dinner
           6:15pm- Wednesday Night Bible Study with Mark Sink

Parents and leaders: Are you interested in helping lead and chaperone in rotation or regularly for Sunday nights, Wednesday nights, or special events? Please contact Whitney.
Wednesday Night
Dinners & Activities
Wednesday Night Dinners are scheduled to resume September 8th at 5:30 PM in the gym. The September 8th menu is as follows: Chicken Fingers, Baked Potato with butter, Side Salad, & Dessert. Costs are $6/adult, $5/child (ages 4-12), and children under 4 are free. The max per household is $18. First-time guests are free.

We are still in need of substitutes for kitchen duties. If you can help, please call Kathi Costigan as soon as possible at 977-0294.

On September 8th, we plan to have a Ministry Matters meeting (in lieu of Adult Bible Study) at 6:15 PM; and Thrive Youth Ministry and Children's Choirs will also begin. Adult Bible Study will resume the following Wednesday, September 15th.
Ministry Matters
Plan to join us at 6:15 PM Wednesday, September 8th for our next Ministry Matters meeting. We will be discussing and/or voting on the 2021-22 Proposed Budget, as well as proposed changes to the Policies & Procedures Manual, the Bylaws, and the Employee Handbook. Please click on each of the above for the proposed updates.
Wednesday Women
Our 7-session fall Bible study on Elijah (by Priscilla Shirer) begins September 8th in the Disciple Center. Plan to join us 10:00 - 11:30 AM each Wednesday, September 8th - October 20th. The participant's study guide is $16.99/each. You can sign up by calling the church office at 540-343-7685. Questions? Contact Susan Jones at 540-890-4887.
"Welcome Back, Church"
Sunday, September 12th, 5:00 - 7:30 PM
at Herman L. Horn pavilion/playground
(rain location is VBC gym).

Bring your own lawn chairs and dinner. Lemonade and water will be provided. We will have games, energizers, and free Blue Cow ice cream! Plan to join us!
Margie Brown
Elm Park Estates #218
4230 Elm View Road
Roanoke VA 24018
August 22, 2021:
8:45 AM
In person - 172
Online - 127
11:00 AM
In person - 130
Online - 120
Sunday School - 174
Thank you to the Mary Martha Class for their donation to 5th Quarter.
Benevolence Fund
The Benevolence Fund has been established to help members of our community (non-members of the church) who have fallen on difficult times and need assistance to pay their bills. Each request for assistance is thoroughly reviewed and verified by VBC staff. If you would like to make contributions to this fund, please include "Benevolence Fund" in the memo line of your contribution. Thanks in advance for sharing the love of Christ with our community by meeting monetary needs.
Christian sympathy is extended to the family & friends of Ruth Thomas, who passed away August 22nd; the funeral is today at 2 PM at VBC. Also to Chris & Sabrina McCarty, Becky Conner, & Alice Lackey and families in the passing of Carolyn McCarty August 22nd; the funeral is tomorrow at 2 PM at VBC (visitation beginning at 12 PM).
Children's Volunteers Needed
The Children's Ministry is in need of Children's Worship volunteers. Thanks to all those who regularly help out! If you're interested in helping, but don't know what is required, please contact Sarah. Otherwise, please sign up here (dates available through September). In addition, the Nominating Committee needs substitutes for children's Sunday School teachers. If you can be available as a substitute teacher, please contact Jennifer Sink or Sarah Hurt. Thanks so much!
5th Quarter
WBHS is planning for a full football season this fall, and we want to be able to provide a safe, fun place for students to go after home games. However, we are delaying the start of 5th Quarter until October, when there are three home games: October 1st, 8th (Homecoming), and 22nd (Senior Night). If you can help, please sign up in the church office. We must have enough volunteer support before we can commit to hosting 5th Quarter for the month of October.
Book Club
Use these questions as a guide as you finish reading Ruth Roe’s August book pick, The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society:

1. What was the effect of reading a novel about an author's experiences with writing, editing, and getting published?
2. What historical facts about life in England during World War II were you especially surprised to discover? What traits, such as remarkable stamina, are captured in a detail such as potato peel pie? In what ways does fiction provide a means for more fully understanding a nonfiction truth?
3. Which of the members of the Society is your favorite? Whose literary opinions are most like your own?

Thank you for the book recommendation, Ruth! Happy Reading!
New Website, App, & Realm
Our new VBC website and app are scheduled to launch this weekend!! You will still be able to find us at; we'll just look a little different! We'll give your more details on downloading the app over the weekend. Bear with us the first couple of weeks while we work out any kinks in our new system. Along with the website, we must upgrade our email host; while we don't anticipate any problems, it is possible that our church email may be down between Friday and Monday. If you email a staff member and don't receive a reply over the next few days, please follow up with a phone call to be on the safe side.

We also plan to launch Realm sometime late next week. With Realm, you will have access to your own profile in our computer system, as well as church directory info, online sign-ups for various events, etc. In anticipation of the Realm roll-out,
  1. please make sure that we have your current email address on file
  2. note that every adult's name, email, phone (home/mobile), address, birthdate (month & day only), list of immediate family members, and groups you're in (like your Sunday School class) will appear in the online directory by default. That directory is only available to church members and regular attendees whom we invite to Realm (just like a printed directory). If you would prefer not to have this info available to our church family, you may make that change in Realm when you are invited to join by email, or you may call the church office and we will be happy to make that change for you.
Blessing Box
The following items are needed for the Blessing Box:
  • Hamburger Helper meals - any kind
  • Large bottles of laundry detergent (available at Dollar Tree)
  • Toilet paper
  • Paper towels (we will never have enough)
  • Soup - any kind
  • Boxes of mac & cheese
  • Chef Boyardee cans - any kind
  • Dish soap
  • Vienna sausages
  • Spam
Items can be dropped off at the Missions Tables. Thank you!
Special thanks goes to Barbara Slusher, Kathi Costigan, Carolyn Lyon, and Helen Foster for their amazing assistance in the church office over the past week. You rock!
The Administrative & Ministerial Office Staff