Pastor Vern's Top Ten

1. Good Friday Service – Tomorrow night (Friday, 4/2) at 7pm our Arbor House pastoral team will be offering an in-person Good Friday service at 350 Bank St.  The community is invited to come and spend some time in reflection on the sacrifice Jesus made by going to the cross in order to pay for our sins.  For more information contact Pastor Chris at chris@northgatefmc.com.

2. New Women’s Bible Study Starting Next Week – Women’s Journey will start a new Bible study on Wednesday April 7 @ 7pm at North. This is a 12-week, Women of Faith study called “Uncovering God’s Word”.  Please contact Cricket Johnson if you are interested in attending.  You can reach her at (585 )815-5356 or cricket@2ki.net.

3. Food Distribution/Volunteers Needed  In April we may have the opportunity to be part of the Salvation Army/Food Link food distribution for our area.  We are looking for volunteers to help with that.  The dates for the food distributions are April 14 and 28 and volunteers will need to come to the church around 1:30pm.  Thanks!

4. “Centered” - Three Evenings Focused on God’s Power – We are planning three special evenings April 18-20. We’re calling this event “Centered” and we invite everyone to come and experience the power of connecting with God through prayer and Scripture. Pastor David Prince from Cross Creek, the Free Methodist Church in Palmyra, will join us Sunday night with his wife Linda to share their incredible story of Linda’s recent healing from multiple sclerosis. On Tuesday evening Kyle Sullivan, Assistant Dean of Students at Roberts Wesleyan College, will lead us through a focused reading of Scripture – an ancient Christian practice called lectio divina. Monday night’s plans are still coming together but all three evenings will include a time of worshipful singing and time for prayer, including prayer for healing of physical, emotional and relational issues. Please mark your calendars now and plan to join us for one, two or all three evenings!

5. 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.

6. The Rummage Sale is Back This Year Our Early Bird group is going to hold their rummage sale again this year, after having to miss last year due to COVID.  The proceeds from this rummage sale goes to support mission work and this year it is going to be held on May 7 and 8.  So start setting aside those items you’d like to donate and we’ll let you know when and how to bring them in for the sale.  Thanks!

7. International Child Care Sponsorships Will Be Available On Easter we will have a new group of Gahanda children available for sponsorship.  We’ve received some new profiles, to go with some that we have now, for a total of 37 sponsorships.  Many of you are already sponsoring children in Gahanda and it’s making a huge difference in their lives and the lives of their families and their community.  Thank you for what you are doing!  If others are interested in sponsoring a child there will be a table set up in our lobby where you can do that.  Sponsorships are $30 per month (but increasing to $38 per month in July).

8. Pastor Marsha is Going to Senegal Please keep Pastor Marsha in prayer as she prepares for a trip to Senegal in Africa.  Marsha is going as a member of our Conference Ministerial Education and Guidance board, on the invitation of a group of pastors in Senegal who are interested in uniting with the Free Methodist Church.  Please prayer for her preparations for this trip which begins on April 17.  

9. First Aid Supplies for Senegal Ever wish you could hop into someone's suitcase when they're going on a trip? Luggage restrictions won't allow Pastor Marsha to take us with her to Senegal in Western Africa, but she is taking a suitcase full of first aid supplies to distribute to the communities she visits, and you can add something to that! Marsha leaves April 17 as a member of our Conference Ministerial Education and Guidance board, on the invitation of a group of Senegalese pastors who are interested in uniting with the Free Methodist Church. Items she is collecting:
•Bandaids/bandages/dressings, etc.
•Antibiotic ointment (like Polysporin)
•Vitamins (adult/children – pills and liquid)
•Advil/Tylenol (generic is fine)
Please bring these items to the North Campus lobby by April 15, and please pray for Pastor Marsha and the collaborative team with whom she will be ministering.

10. Prayer-Walk Opportunities Coming Up As we look 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.

Right now we have these prayer walk opportunities lined up (actually one is a “prayer-run” opportunity!)
•Tuesday at 10am/starts April 6 (Oakfield)
oTriangle Park Gazebo with Robin Woodams
•Tuesday at 5:30pm/starts April 6 (Batavia)
oThis is a Running Group – Meet at Arbor House (South Campus) with Doug Forsyth
•Every Other Wednesday - Mid-morning/times vary (Rochester)
oJericho Walk at Strong Hospital with Mark Logan (Contact Pastor Marsha for dates/times – marsha@northgatefmc.com)
•Wednesday at 6pm/starts April 7 (Batavia)
oNorthgate Prayer Walk (North Campus) with Suzy Jarrett and Louis Smith
•Thursday at 6pm/starts April 8 (Batavia)
oArbor House (South Campus) with Pastor Chris Landon
•Sunday at 4:30pm/starts April 11 (Albion)
oMount Albion Cemetery with Greg & Sherrie Staines
•Sunday at 6pm/starts April 11 (Bergen)
oHickory Park with Pastor Vern
•Thursday at 6pm/starts April 15 (Batavia)
oDeWitt Recreation Area with Anthony Hoisington

You Can Count on This – Acts 13:2 – While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, “Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.” (Read Acts 13:1-12)

Many of us are reaching the completion of another time of fasting and prayer, as we come to the end of Lent and approach the celebration of the resurrection of Jesus!  But here in Acts 13 is an encouragement to not stop fasting and praying, because it is through worship, fasting and prayer that God’s Spirit often chooses to speak to us.  

Your fasting after Lent may take a different form, than it did during Lent, or you may choose to continue with what you’ve been doing.  Or maybe you will begin to fast and pray for the first time, or the first time in a long time.  Maybe you’ll find that fasting from lunch one day a week, or for a 24-hour period once a week will be right for you, or maybe you’ll find a different rhythm for your fast.  However you might do it, we encourage you to build regular fasting into your prayer life.  And do this, not as a “lucky charm” but as an expression of worshipful, humble dependence upon God.  And expect God to speak to you through your worship and prayers.  

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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