The Witness
Volume 39, Issue 36
September 8, 2021
"Breaking Bread"
Tonight, we have an opportunity to do something we have not done as a church in almost 18 months, and that is share a meal together. The last time we gathered as a church in the gym for our Wednesday night fellowship meal was March 11, 2020. As a church, community, nation, and world, we have been through a lot and experienced many changes since then, but the importance of breaking bread together still remains.

It is amazing to consider how often Jesus’ interactions in the gospels involved breaking bread around the table. After calling a tax collector to be one of his disciples, Jesus joined with Matthew and a number of his friends for dinner. In the Gospel of John, Jesus’ first recorded miracle of turning water into wine took place at a wedding reception in Cana, wherein all the guests were enjoying food and fellowship around the table as they celebrated. When Jesus called Zacchaeus out of a sycamore tree, he invited himself over to Zacchaeus’s house for dinner. When Jesus visited the home of Mary and Martha, as Mary sat at his feet and listened, Martha was busy with all of her tasks to welcome their special guest. Scholars agree that fixing a meal would have been a large part of Martha’s preparations.

When Jesus was followed by the multitudes to the other side of the Sea of Galilee, his disciples wanted to send them away hungry; instead, Jesus shared a meal of bread and fish with them. And, of course, one of the most universally recognizable sacraments of our faith revolves around the symbolism of an important dinner—the Last Supper. Of all the images Jesus could have used, it was through the breaking of bread and pouring of wine that he illustrated for his disciples the events of his death and purpose of his sacrifice. Finally, it is significant that Jesus would describe the Kingdom of God as a Great Banquet, echoing Isaiah’s words that on God’s holy mountain, “the Lord Almighty will prepare a feast of rich food for all peoples (Isaiah 25:6).”

All throughout the gospels, while gathered around the table stories were told, lessons were learned, miracles were seen, and disciples were born. I do not think it is coincidence that following Luke’s description of the early church as “breaking bread together in their homes and eating with glad and generous hearts,” that he concluded: “And day by day the Lord added to their number those who were being saved (Acts 2:47).” The power of gathering around the table together cannot be underestimated. It is a sacred space where our lives intersect with one another, friends become family, and God’s love is felt through the faces and stories, laughter and love of those seated around us. I hope you will join us tonight as we gather around the table to break bread together.
-- Travis
Worship this Sunday, September 12th
Travis begins a new sermon series this week with "What is Doubt?" based in James 1:2-8. We hope to see you at 8:45 or 11:00 AM. If you choose to worship virtually, please access our livestream through our website or FB live. Sunday School is at 9:50 AM, and we have classes for everyone.
"Welcome Back, Church"
This 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!
Music Ministry Details:
TODAY: "Steelin' Away" Youth Steel Drum Band rehearsals begin (4:30 - 5:15 PM); Children's Choirs 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.
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!
Bible in a Year Reading
Read this week:
The Old Testament: 1 Samuel 29-31; 2 Samuel1-6
The New Testament: 1 Corinthians 10-16
Old Testament Prophecy: Ezekiel 8-14
Psalms: Psalms 46-55
Meditate: 12 For now we see in a mirror, dimly,[b] but then we will see face to face. Now I know only in part; then I will know fully, even as I have been fully known. 13 And now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; and the greatest of these is love. -1 Corinthians 13:12-13
Prayer: "Love lifted me, love lifted me, when nothing else could help, love lifted me." -James Rowe

Wednesday Night
Dinners & Activities
Registration is closed for tonight's dinner, but we would love to have you join us at 6:15 PM tonight for the Ministry Matters meeting, Thrive Youth Group, and Children's Choirs. (Adult Bible Study will begin next Wednesday.)

Tonight's Ministry Matters includes 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.

The menu for next Wednesday's dinner (9/15): BBQ Sandwich on Bun, Coleslaw, Buttered Cut Corn, & Dessert. Ice tea, lemonade, and water are available. 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. Please make your reservation by calling the church office at 540-343-7685 no later than 5 PM Tuesday, 9/14; late registrations cannot be accepted. If you would like to be added to the "permanent list," please let us know.
Thrive Student Ministry
Join us for our Extreme Kick-Off on Sunday, September 19th at 6:00 PM, following Youth Choir. Parents and students join us for dinner, an overview for the year, and some games as well! Parents will have a chance to sign up to chaperone, get answers to questions about events and trips over the year, and experience Extreme with your student.

Our Thrive Student ministry is back to a regular weekly, evening schedule:
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

Students, be sure to join our GroupMe group “VBC Thrive” for updates and announcements!
JOY Seniors Events
You won't want to miss the September JOY Seniors Luncheon on the 28th! We will have guest speaker Ann Green, an attorney, talk about long term care and estate planning. Our boxed lunches will come from Mission BBQ and will include your choice of a pulled pork or pulled chicken sandwich, side, coleslaw, drink, and dessert for $10. Sign up at the new JOY Seniors table beside the Welcome Center by Friday, September 24th.

The JOY Seniors will also be taking a tour of the Water Treatment Plant (9 - 11 AM) and PFG (1 - 3 PM) on September 30th. We will have lunch at Jersey Lily's (11:30 AM - 12:30 PM). Departure from the VBC parking lot will be 8:30 AM. The deadline to sign up for this trip is September 24th. The only cost is your lunch, which you will need to pre-order. Order forms are available at the JOY Seniors table beside the Welcome Center.
Lillie Johnston
Clearview Manor #402
1150 Vinyard Road
Vinton VA 24179
Join us in wishing Betty Jane Marshall a Happy 94th Birthday on September 10th!! Cards and letters may be send to the following address: Pheasant Ridge SLC, 4435 Pheasant Ridge Road, c/o Unit 223 Julian Marshall, Roanoke VA 24014.
September 5, 2021:
8:45 AM
In person - 133
Online - 128
11:00 AM
In person - 102
Online - 100
Sunday School - 171
Benevolence Fund
The Benevolence Fund was 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. In the past four months, we have been able to help 13 individuals/families in their times of need, the majority of whom have been dealing with some form of housing insecurity. One of the most recent requests came from a woman who had escaped an abusive situation, had safe housing lined up, but just needed help paying for a motel for a couple of nights until she could get to her secure housing. If you would like to make contributions to the Benevolence Fund, please notate this fund in the memo line of your contribution. Thanks in advance for sharing the love of Christ with our community by meeting monetary needs.
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, and Spam. Items can be dropped off at the Missions Tables. Thank you!
College Care Packages
It's time to collect for College Care Packages, and we need your help with the following items: individual size packages of hard candy (no peanut butter or tree nuts, please), individual serving Oreos, small packs of Clorox wipes, microwave popcorn, Slim Jims, fruit snacks, fruit roll-ups, Gushers, "Kind" snack granola bars, single serving Goldfish/Cheez-its, single serving Pringles, Sharpies, monetary donations to cover shipping costs ($9/package) and the purchase of additional items (note "College Care Packages" in the memo line). Donations will be collected at the Missions Tables; deadline is September 26th.

If you have an undergraduate college student in your family, we want to make sure to include them! Please send your student's name and address to the church office (540-343-7685 or [email protected]) or directly to Jennifer or Joanna Williamson ([email protected]) so that we have the correct address.
Valley Impact Day 2021
On September 25th, the Roanoke Valley Baptist Association is sponsoring Valley Impact Day. This day will be an opportunity for all RVBA churches to serve together in Jesus’ name. Vinton Baptist Church has partnered with Keystone Community Center as our Valley Impact Day partner through the RVBA.

Pat Carter has projects that can be done ahead of time or in person that Saturday. Needs at Keystone include: 
-crush cans and tabs
-decorate Thanksgiving and Christmas boxes (This can be a project from your home!)
-build and install a simple shelving unit in the storage house for canning jars
-sort through fabric at the center
-clean outdoor story hut and paint
-dig up dirt and replace with gravel
-extend ramp with concrete
-cover for outdoor bench for RADAR riders

Are you interested in leading one of these projects or serving in this way? Contact Whitney for more details or to sign up! Sign ups will be available in the church office or through this link:
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 the end of this month).
September Book Club
I hope you are enjoying The Library Book by Susan Orlean. Use these questions as a guide as you read:
  1. What has your relationship with libraries been throughout your life? Can you share some library memories from childhood to adulthood?
  2. Were you at all familiar with the Los Angeles library fire? Or any library fire?
  3. How would you describe the fire’s impact on the community? How about the community’s rebuilding efforts?
  4. In chapter 5, Orlean writes that books “take on a kind of human vitality.” What role do books play in your life and home, and do you anthropomorphize them? Have you ever wrestled with the idea of giving books away or otherwise disowning them?
  5. What is your impression of John Szabo? How does his career inform and shape your understanding of what librarians do?
Happy Reading!
Thanks for being patient with our Realm roll-out. We hope to have invitations sent to you either this week or next. Keep in mind that we must have a current email address on file in order to send you an invitation. Please also be aware 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.

Thanks to everyone who is giving through the new app and/or website. If you need any assistance with giving, please let us know. We're here to help.

You can easily access the current prayer list through our app. When you open the app and land on the home page, look for the cross at the very bottom of the screen, along with "Prayer List." Just click on the cross, click on "Current Prayer List," and click again on "Click Here for the Current Prayer List." The prayer list is usually updated at least twice per week, on Wednesdays and Fridays. If you haven't yet downloaded the app, you can get started by going to your app store and searching for "Vinton Baptist Church VA."
Hygiene Kits
If you or your class/circle/group would like to help people impacted by hurricanes Henri or Ida, or Afghan refugees, please click here for an opportunity to show the love of Christ by creating hygiene kits. We are collecting completed hygiene kits at the Missions Tables through this Sunday, September 12th, when they will be delivered to Lynn Haven Baptist Church.
Operation Christmas Child
It's nearly shoebox time again! If you have empty shoeboxes to donate, you can bring them to the church office anytime. Wrapping of shoeboxes is already underway! We are meeting every Tuesday and Wednesday, 10 AM - 12 PM, to wrap shoeboxes in Rooms 102 & 103. Everyone is welcome to come help - even if you're only available for one day. Very soon we will have wrapped boxes available for you to pick up and fill with goodies for children in need worldwide. Questions? Contact Darlene McCaskill.
WMU Mission Projects
September 2020 - August 2021
$95.00 Snacks for Boys & Girls Club - VBC; $25.00 VBC Building Fund in memory of Helen Weaver; $180.00 Keystone Community Center plus school supplies; $50.00 Shut-in birthday & Christmas; $50.00 VBC Food Pantry; $25.00 Salvation Army; $50.00 Soup for Seniors; $150.00 City Rescue Mission plus 20 pies for Thanksgiving dinner; $50.00 Samaritan Inn plus hats, gloves, & socks; $20.00 Meals on Wheels memorial; $25.00 VBC Passport Camps; $80.00 VBC Vacation Bible School plus needed items; $50.00 LOA Let's Give Lunch; $25.00 Ronald McDonald House; $50.00 Feeding America Southwest Virginia; Keystone Community Center food boxes for Thanksgiving, Christmas, & Easter; Operation Christmas Child shoeboxes; North & South Dakota Indian Reservation - 155 hygiene kits and 52 dental kits; cards to shut-ins.

Envelopes for the Alma Hunt State Missions Offering are in your box of church envelopes. Our church goal is $2,200.00. This offering seeks to meet real needs of real people by funding ministries of specific areas. Please help our church reach this goal.
Chris & Sabrina McCarty and family would like to thank our Vinton Baptist family for all the prayers, calls, cards, texts, donations, food visits, and flowers that we received during this difficult time of Carolyn McCarty's passing. The beautiful service was a great testimony of Carolyn's life. Thank you for joining us in singing the Hallelujah Chorus, as this was her favorite and a very memorable ending to her service. While we will miss her greatly, we find peace in knowing that she is now in no pain and is enjoying reuniting with loved ones in heaven. Please continue to remember the family in your prayers. Love in Christ,
The McCarty Family
To Our Church Family,
It is with grateful hearts that we thank you for the prayers, cards, e-mails, texts, and calls at Eddie's recent hospitalization. Please pray for us as he continues to recover. Our thanks and love,
Eddie & Linda Kingery
Thanks so much to Carolyn Lyon, Barbara Slusher, & Helen Foster for helping us cover the administrative tasks in the church office over the past week. Your caring assistance is always so appreciated!
The Administrative & Ministerial Office Staff