Top Ten - April 18

1. Early Birds Rummage Sale is Coming Up Our Early Birds group is preparing for another rummage sale to support Northgate’s mission work in Gahanda, Rwanda. The sale will be held on May 6 and 7 at our South Campus (350 Bank St. Rd.) and volunteers, as well as items for the sale are needed. If you’d like to volunteer to help set up you can do so any time that week, May 2-5. If you’d like to donate items for the sale, please bring them to South May 2, 3 or 4. Thank you to the Early Birds, volunteers, donators and bargain-hunters for supporting the wonderful work going on in Gahanda!

2. “The Generous Will Themselves Be Blessed…” (Proverbs 22:9) Thank you for showing your generosity as a church. Over the past few weeks we have given out thirty full Easter meals to migrant families living in our area, collected sheets, pillowcases, towels and other supplies for the YWCA Domestic Violence Program, and been able to celebrate with our friends in Gahanda the progress on the building of their new church, all of this made possible because you are a church that understands how to bless others, and in turn be blessed. Thank you so much! It’s a wonderful thing to be part of!

3. New Group for Couples Starting A new group geared to dating, engaged or married couples is going to be starting up at North on May 1 at 9:30. The group will be studying The Five Love Languages by Gary Chapman. For more information visit the information table in the lobby or contact Pastor Marsha (
Register at

4. Kids Color Run Coming Up Our Children’s Ministry Team is organizing a Kids Color Run! This fun event will happen at the North Campus and is being planned for Saturday April 23 at 11am (rain date: Saturday April 30). Registrations have already started coming in and you can register at For more information contact our amazing Children’s Ministry Director, Leah Lennon, at

5. Support Group for Women with Disordered Eating Issues Dr. Joyce Wagner, a friend of Northgate’s, is organizing a new support group for women dealing with things like binge eating, compulsive eating, emotional eating and food addiction. This group will take place virtually, meet for six weeks and costs $150.  For more information you can contact Dr. Wagner at 585-733-9465 or check out her website:

6. A Night With “Set Free” Director Kevin Austin Please mark your calendars for a vision-casting presentation by Kevin Austin, director of the Set Free Movement, the anti-human trafficking ministry of the Free Methodist Church. This will take place from 6-7:30pm on Monday, April 25th in Room 2/3 and is open to anyone interested in this ministry. For more information contact Pastor Marsha (

7. Seeking Peace in Ukraine Please continue to pray for peace in Ukraine. And if you’d like to do more, our Free Methodist Church has a “Bishops’ Crisis Relief Fund” that you can give to and designate the money for helping people in Ukraine. You can find the link to that site here:

And you can see a news clip about the amazing work Lydia Dominick has been doing to help the people of Ukraine on the WGRZ website. The Dominick family are one of our many wonderful Northgate families who give generously to others. Learn about Lydia’s efforts to love others here:

8. Prayer Groups You are invited to join with others to pray for our church and community on Wednesdays at 1 and Sundays at 9:30. The Wednesday Prayer Group prays for one hour in Meeting Room 1 at North Campus and on Sunday people gather in Room 4 for an hour and pray for our services and congregational needs. Everyone is welcome to either or both of these prayer meetings.

9. Suicide Prevention Conference – On May 24 we will be hosting a Suicide Prevention Awareness conference for pastors and others at our South Campus. If you are interested in learning how to help address the crisis of suicide in a positive way please talk with Pastor Vern about attending this important meeting. You can reach me at

10. Homecoming Weekend! Our Northgate staff is hard at work planning a “Homecoming Weekend” on May 21 and 22. We envision this as a time we can gather as a church, invite friends, and encourage others who have been away a while to come and experience the blessings of being together. There will be food, games, activities for the kids and weather-permitting one large worship service under a tent in our backyard on Sunday! We’re really excited about this and hope you’ll plan now to be with us that weekend!

To learn more about these opportunities, or to suggest an idea for a group or a gathering, or to inquire about reserving space at the church or the pavilion you can always email the office ( or call 343-4011. You can check out our website too (
You Can Count on This – Romans 14:12    So then, each of us will give an account of ourselves to God. (Read Romans 14:1-23)

Some things are not important enough to argue about. But we ought to be sensitive to the beliefs and practices of others and help each other keep growing in our faith.

That’s perhaps a general summary of much of what Paul is saying in Romans 14. At the time he wrote some faithful Christians were eating meat that had been prepared in the market, and which may have been offered to idols in the process and knowing that these idols were nothing they ate without guilt. Other Christians felt it was wrong to do that. Some Christians felt that some days were to be observed in a special way, while others disagreed. These differences were threatening to pull the church apart, something Paul was very concerned about. He pleads with the church, which was increasingly composed of a diverse group of Gentiles and Jews who had come to Christ, to remain united, and sensitive to one another. He encouraged them to consider how to support one another in their faith, even when it meant sacrificing a “right” to do something someone didn’t consider a problem.

This kind of sensitivity and desire for unity in the church remains a key issue for us. How many non-Christians have watched church members squabble over non-essential issues and thought, “I don’t want any part of that”? There are some things that we should never compromise on: the bodily resurrection of Jesus, for example. But there are many other things that are matters of personal conscience and should not cause division. These might include playing cards, dancing, appropriate use of alcohol, wearing masks for health reasons when they aren’t mandated, different political views, listening to secular music, which version of the Bible to read, etc.

Churches have had “wars” over all these things and that has done much damage to our witness to Christ. Yes, we are to use good judgment in all things, and we are to do all things to the glory of God (1 Corinthians 10:31) but where there is room for divergent beliefs we need to be sensitive and thoughtful and engage in healthy discussion and seek to understand and remain one in Christ.

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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