Pastor Vern's Top Ten

1.  April 1st: Flashlight Scavenger Hunt – This spring, we are putting a fun, new twist on the Easter egg hunt! Mark your calendars -- your kids won't want to miss this!  We will be sending out more information in the coming weeks with more details and a link to register! We can't wait to enjoy the Easter season with you and your kids! We are going to need volunteers for this event so if you would like to help out, please let Leah know via email leah@northgatefmc.com!

2.  Coming Soon: Pray Station – The Children’s ministry team is also planning a fun event at the church dedicated to the importance of spending time with God.  This will be built on stations, with each station taking your family deeper into what it means to talk to God. We hope this activity stimulates meaningful conversations about connecting with God and how kids can continue to do so on a regular basis.  More details will be coming out soon.

3.  Fasting and Prayer For Lent It’s not too late to join other Northgaters in fasting together, from now until April 4, to as a way of drawing closer to God and each other through this season. If you would like to participate with us in this ancient spiritual practice by abstaining from food for one day (or part of a day) each week, or from a particular food or activity for a day (or part), please email me (vern@northgatefmc.com) or Pastor Marsha (marsha@northgatefmc.com).  

Also let us know if you’d like to receive a link to a daily video prayer throughout Lent.  These prayers are led by Superintendent Pam and the Field Superintendents working with her.  They are between 3-5 minutes in length and cover a variety of topics.  

4.  Arbor House Is Holding In-Person Services Arbor House has returned to in-person worship services.  The service begins at 10am and meets at our South Campus building at 350 Bank St. in Batavia.  Arbor House offers a liturgical style worship service and all are welcome!

5.  Virtual Connection Cards If you’re new to Northgate, attending either online or in person, we’d love to have you fill out a virtual connection card.  You can find it in our Northgate App – click on “Connect Card.  If you don’t see it, you may need to update the App – we’ve recently made some changes to it.  Thank you!

6.  Pastor Daniel’s Thursday Night Opportunity – Pastor Daniel has started a new group for Middle and High School students.  The group meets virtually on Thursday nights at 7pm using Right Now Media.  For more information contact Pastor Daniel at daniel@northgatefmc.com.

Also Remember – Base is meeting on Wednesday nights.  There’s open gym at 5pm and the meeting starts at 6pm.  Ember (for young adults) meets on Wednesday morning at 9:15 at Pub Coffee.  

Pastor Daniel is also holding an evening meeting (7pm) at South Campus which is reading 8 classic books by C.S. Lewis.  This is open to everybody and you can sign up for it on our website: northgatefmc.com, or just come out on Monday nights. For more information on any of this contact Pastor Daniel at daniel@northgatefmc.com.

7.  How Can We Pray For You? The Northgate staff loves to pray for you – it’s an honor and a privilege.  We also have a Care Team that regularly prays for many people in our congregation.  Please help us know how we can pray by submitting your requests to one of the pastors, or through the Northgate APP, or by emailing (prayer@northgatefmc.com) or texting (585-204-0645).  Thank you!

8.  Bishop Linda’s Article on “Life-Giving Holiness”  Bishop Linda has written a wonderful and in-depth article on one of our core beliefs as a Free Methodist church: entire sanctification, which is one way of talking about what it means to be holy.  In the article Bishop Linda describes holiness this way: “a radical transformation of heart and mind resulting in fully loving God and neighbor.”  Can you think of anything our world needs more right now than people who have been radically transformed and who fully love God and neighbor?  Bishop Linda’s article is well worth taking the time to read so that we can better understand exactly what God wants to do in and through us.  You can find it here: https://lightandlife.fm/life-giving-holiness/.

9.  Financial Peace University Classes Available New FPU groups have started but there’s still time to join.  An online group began on Sunday, February 28 at 6pm and an in-person group began on Wednesday, March 3 at 6:30.  You can get more information and sign up for either of these from our website, northgatefmc.com.  Go to “connect” – “groups” – “learn more” and click on the Financial Peace icon.  

10.   Prayer-Walk Opportunities Coming Up Looking forward to warmer weather and more time together, we will be starting several Northgate Prayer-Walk Groups the week following Easter (April 4).  These groups will meet once a week to walk and pray together.  We hope to be able to offer groups in a variety of places and neighborhoods.  If you’d be interested in joining a prayer-walk group please let Pastor Marsha know by emailing her at marsha@northgatefmc.com.

Prayer-Walk Group Leaders Needed! – In order to offer as many groups as possible in as many locations as possible (see #7 above) we need leaders!  The concept is simple: To lead a prayer-walk group, set a starting time and place near where you live; let friends and neighbors know; then go for your walk. We suggest a 30-45-minute walk, once per week, for 6-8 weeks. Gather prayer requests ahead of time and/or on-the-spot. Group members can pray aloud or silently as you walk. Also allow time for fellowship and discussion. Sound refreshing? It is! To the body, mind and spirit. If you are willing to lead a prayer-walk group where you live, Northgate would like to give you a complimentary copy of the book, God Walk: Moving at the Speed of Your Soul by Mark Buchanan. Use the book as the basis for discussion and/or inspiration with your group. You can do this!  If you’re interested in giving it a go, please contact Pastor Marsha at marsha@northgatefmc.com to lead this simple and profound spiritual practice.

Right now we have prayer-walk leaders for Attica, Batavia, Northgate Prayer Walk, Mount Albion Cemetery, Strong Memorial Hospital and Cedar Street Park in Batavia.

We are looking for leaders for LeRoy, Batavia City Hall area, Oakfield, Elba, Bergen, Churchville, Corfu, Medina, or where you live!

You Can Count on This – Acts 9:34 – “Aeneas,” Peter said to him, “Jesus Christ heals you. Get up and roll up your mat.” Immediately Aeneas got up. – (Read Acts 9:31-43)

In these few verses Peter is used by Jesus to heal Aeneas and raise Tabitha from the dead.  Passages like this can challenge us and raise questions for us.  Why aren’t all people who are prayed for in the name of Jesus healed (in this world and at this time)?  Does God still heal miraculously people today through our prayers?  Does God only heal through our prayers if we have the faith of Peter?  If people are healed, what is God’s purpose in that, since anyone who is healed is going to die someday (unless Jesus returns first)?

There are other questions raised by accounts like this.  (If this raises questions for you and you’d like to talk about it, write one of the Northgate pastors!  We’d love to have that conversation with you!)  But I believe God does still heal today, through prayer and miraculously, though how and when He heals is up to Him.  And I believe the greatest purpose in the healings that happen is to turn people to Christ and bring glory to God.  Notice what happened in Lydda, Sharon and Joppa as a result of these miracles (see verses 35 and 42).  Many people turned to the Lord.  And that is a miracle story in itself.

When you’re not sure what you can count on in the world around you, know this: You can count on God keeping his word.  So read what God has to say in scripture!  And count on it.






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