Top Ten - March 23

If you’d like to help out in some area in the church contact Pastor John at john@northgatefmc.com.
If you’re interested in a small group, contact Angelique at angelique@northgatefmc.com.

1. Pray for Our Rwanda Team! Mark (our Director of Operations), Allison (our Director of Communications), Lukas (our Tech Director) and Elise and Devon have headed to the Buffalo airport to begin their two-week trip to Rwanda where they will visit Gahanda (the site of our Connected Community) as well as other Connected Community sites. They are focusing this trip on gathering video and pictures and stories to share with churches and others to bring greater awareness to the work God is doing in Rwanda. Please keep them in your prayers! They are due to arrive back in the United States on March 29. Thank you!

2. Easter Schedule Easter is coming quickly – just a few weeks away.  Here’s the schedule for the services we’ll be holding during Holy Week…
  • Maundy Thursday Service, April 6 at Arbor House – A self-guided stations of the cross event. Come anytime between 6 and 8pm
  • Good Friday Service, April 7 at Arbor House at 7pm
  • Saturday night service at North – 6:00pm
  • Easter Sunday sunrise at the North Campus pavilion – 6:30am
  • Easter Sunday Celebration at North – 9:30/11am
  • Easter Sunday Celebration at Arbor House – 10am

3. Lenten Collection for the YWCA During the season of Lent we will be collecting items that the YWCA Domestic Violence program needs to serve people that reach out to them. Each week we’ll be asking people to bring different things to North or South and we will deliver them to the YWCA. Here’s the schedule for what’s being collected:

  • 3/25 &26 – Shampoo & Conditioner
  • 4/1 & 2 – Body wash/soap

4. Save the Dates There are some events coming up for which you may want to save the date.

  • A new couple’s group has started at North on Sundays at 9:30
  • The “IF” Gathering will be held here (by video) on Friday April 21 and Saturday April 22; Registration is available on the Northgate website
  • A young adults picnic is being planned for April 21 at the Pavilion/North
  • Phyllis Sorter – a Free Methodist missionary who survived a kidnapping in Nigeria, will be with us June 21 at 6pm to share about her experience
  • Kid’s Summer Camp at Northgate will take place from July 17 to July 21  

5. Baptisms/Dedications/Membership If you are interested in joining Northgate as a member, or being baptized, or having a child/infant baptized or dedicated, please contact one of the pastors and let them know. We are planning a weekend of baptisms/dedications on April 15/16 and will schedule a membership class as needed.

6. Parenting Adult Children Debbie Vick is leading this class at 9:30 on Sunday mornings. The first 6 weeks will be video sessions with Chip Ingram and Jim Burns called “Navigating Life with Adult Children.” Then 9 weeks of reviewing each chapter of Jim Burn’s book Doing Life with Your Adult Children (subtitled: Keep your Mouth Shut & the Welcome Mat Out.)  If you have any questions, please contact Angelique at angelique@northgatefmc.com.

7. Pray First! Over 100 people of our church have joined in to read Pray First by Chris Hodges this Lenten season! Angelique also wants people to know that there is a Pray First app that you can download, and she has begun a Pray First Facebook group which anyone can join. To find it look for Angelique Spring and “friend” her, or email her at angelique@northgatefmc.com.

8. Young Ladies’ Small Group A new group for young women has begun and meets on the 2nd/4th Tuesdays at 5:30. For more information contact Angelique at angelique@northgatefmc.com.

9. Listening to the Language of the Bible Rick and Sara Kent are leading a study of some Hebrew words that Jesus would have used, which, by understanding their meaning better will enrich our understanding of the Bible. This will be a fun and informative study and it begins this Sunday at 9:30. For more information contact Angelique at angelique@northgatefmc.com.

10a. Would You Like to Work on Your Spanish Skills? Rosalina has begun helping interested people to increase their Spanish language skills. Whether you have some knowledge in Spanish, or have none but would like to learn, you are welcome. This group meets at noon on Wednesdays at North.

  • Learning another language can help us feel more confident in interacting with people of another culture.
  • At Easter time and Thanksgiving, we deliver special bags of food to migrant families in our area. And in the summer, we make water deliveries to people working in the fields. Everyone is welcome to be part of this.
  • Pre-Covid we held an English as a Second Language class for Spanish-speakers in our area. We’d love to see that restarted. If you are interested in being part of that contact Pastor Vern at vern@northgatefmc.com
  • And please note that Rosalina is preparing to offer translation again for our worship services. If you know of someone who could benefit from that contact Pastor Vern for details on when that will begin.

10b. Help Wanted We are looking for people to be in on the rotation for the Saturday Evening Cafe.  For more information contact Patti Chadwick at patti.chadwick@juno.com or 585-297-3009.

10c. Help Wanted (Part 2) If you are looking for a way to serve others in the community, here are a couple of very good opportunities.
  • Crossroads House – Crossroads provides comfort care to people who have been given a life-limiting diagnosis. There is a need for more volunteers to provide this loving care to individuals and their families. To learn more about Crossroads House you can go to their website: https://www.crossroadshouse.com

  • CASA – CASA stands for “Court Appointed Special Advocates.” Volunteers with CASA advocate for children that have been removed from their homes due to abuse and neglect. Training is provided for all volunteers and no specific background or experience is required. To learn more about CASA visit their website at http://www.geneseecountycasa.org or talk to Pastor Vern and he can put in touch with one of our Northgate attenders who is currently serving with CASA.

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You Can Count on This – Ephesians 5:8-10 – For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light (for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness and truth) and find out what pleases the Lord. (Read Ephesians 5:1-33)


Jesus once said, “I am the light of the world.” (John 8:12) He also said, “You are the light of the world.” (Matthew 5:14) Here in Ephesians 5 Paul speaks about how we once lived in darkness (ignorance, sin, participating in the evil of the world that ignores or rejects God) but we are now “light” in the world. Or rather, “light in the Lord.” Meaning that Jesus has brought us out of that dark world, and by His light shining upon us and in us we have become His agents of light in the world. It is the role of Christ-followers to expose the darkness and bring light.

How do we do that? By living out what we are – living as people who have been enlightened and who have experienced something good and wonderful and so have something good and wonderful to share. We are to live lives characterized by goodness, righteousness and truth. We avoid even the appearance of evil; we repent of sin and commit ourselves to living the holy lives God has called us to; and we reject lies and falsehoods, standing for what is honest and true.

“Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.” – Martin Luther King Jr.

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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