Top Ten - April 18

1. Family Photos With a Purpose On May 11 and 12, the weekend of Mother’s Day, we will be offering a chance to have a photo taken by a Northgate volunteer photographer. Donations for this will be accepted which will be used to support a women’s farm in Gahanda – one of the new missions activities taking place in our Connected Community there.
  • Please note: We could use a few more people willing to take photos on that Sunday, May 12, in particular. If you would be willing to donate your services to this, please contact Allison at And thank you!

2. Early Birds Rummage Sale People have started to ask if the rummage sale is happening this year… and the answer is yes! The dates for the rummage sale that benefits missions work are as follows:

Set up:
  • Monday, May 6 through Wednesday, May 8 – 10am-1 pm and 5-7 pm
  • Thursday, May 9 – 10am-1pm
  • People are needed to unload cars and move furniture boxes.
Sales help:
  • Friday, May 10 – 8am-4 pm
  • Saturday, May 11 – 8 am-2pm

For more information contact Linda or Tom Schmidt at 585-615-6501

3. Northgate Workday It’s time for a spring cleanup around our campuses and the staff will be getting at it on Wednesday, May 15. This work usually entails raking, spreading mulch, cleaning up stones from the snowplowing over the winter, cleaning out closets, etc. We’d be more than happy to have anyone join us that day if you have some time to spare and would like to help out. For questions, contact Mark at Thanks!

4. Costa Rica Missions Car Wash The Costa Rica missions team put on a wonderful breakfast fundraiser last Saturday – thank you to all who helped make that happen and to all who were able to come out and support it. The next fundraiser is going to be a car wash on Sunday, May 19. Donations will be accepted. Please keep the team in prayer as they get closer to their mission trip this summer.

5. Service Opportunity A person at Northgate has been connected with a woman in need, and we have a great opportunity to show up and love her well! Her yard fell into disrepair, and she is being cited and fined for it, unless she can get it all cleaned up. The reason this happened is that she was fighting some medical issues and didn’t want to let anyone know. She doesn’t stand a chance of doing this on her own, it’s too big of a job, but if we get a good crew, we could knock it out with a good Saturday of work. We are planning a workday on Saturday, May 4 at 9:00 to get this taken care of.

Please email Pastor John ( if you are interested in joining this crew or to get more details.

6. The Summit This is our annual church meeting (Society meeting for you long-time Free Methodists!) and we will hold this during our worship services over the weekend of May 18/19. We’ll take some time to celebrate the things that God has been doing around Northgate and what we envision God doing here as we move forward. We also take votes for our administrative team (the A-Team) and the Nominating Team. Only members can vote, and if you’re not sure whether or not you are a member you can check through the church office, or 343-4011.

7. New Caregivers Group Warren and Nancy Savage will be leading a new session of the Caregivers group on the first Tuesday night of the month at North. The group will meet at 6:30pm. If you would like more information about it, please contact Angelique at

8. Playground Progress The work on the playground keeps moving forward and we are hoping to have it completed at the end of May or early June. When it’s done, we’ll have a dedication and celebration – so stay tuned to learn more about that.

9. Father’s Day Ice Cream Father’s Day this year comes on Sunday, June 16. We know dads like ice cream, so that weekend we will be providing it. Saturday night we’ll have ice cream treats available, and Sunday there will be an ice cream truck. This is an opportunity to invite dads that you know to come and worship with us and have an ice cream on us too.

10. Baseball Night in Batavia On Wednesday, June 19 we are inviting everyone to come out to the ballpark in Batavia and enjoy a baseball game. What makes this a special night is that one of our young people will be singing the National Anthem and our K-4 kids will be singing God Bless America. Tickets are $8 a piece and you’ll be able to register for this soon on our website or our app.

You Can Count on This – Hebrews 13:20-21 – Now may the God of peace, who through the blood of the eternal covenant brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great Shepherd of the sheep, equip you with everything good for doing his will, and may he work in us what is pleasing to him, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen. (Read Hebrews 13:1-25)

This is one of my favorite benedictions from the Bible. A benediction is a blessing, and so when the pastor gives the benediction at the end of a worship service he or she is asking for and extending God’s blessings to the people. And I love this blessing!

There is so much about it that speaks to me and is why I love to share it. It begins by reminding us that God is a God of peace. He is not, as some people think, a God whose main characteristic is wrath or anger, but a God who desires to have a relationship of peace with us and who acts to make that possible. And when I give this blessing, I remind myself and hopefully others that God wants that peace with us and for us.

Next, this benediction reminds us of the incredible thing God did for us so that we could have that peace. He “brought back from the dead our Lord Jesus.” Praise God for the resurrection of our Savior Jesus! He did this for us, and He did it because He has made an eternal covenant, or promise, with us that through the blood of Jesus, shed on the cross for the forgiveness of our sins, we can be at peace with God, our sins forgiven, eternal life granted.

In this benediction, Jesus is called the “great Shepherd of the sheep.” I like that image a lot. I don’t mind at all being referred to as a “sheep” with Jesus as my great Shepherd. That imagery makes me think of the care and protection and leading that a shepherd provides their sheep, and I am grateful to know that Jesus is looking after me.

Next up, Hebrews 13:21 asks that God give us everything we need to do His will. I need God’s help every day in order to be faithful to Him and do what He wants me to do. I need God’s wisdom, His encouragement, His instruction, His strength and His presence to be with me as I try to live my life for Jesus.

When this benediction asks that God “work in us what is pleasing to him” I am humbled, excited and thankful. Humbled that God wants to do anything with me, and humbled that He is at work within me. Excited that God is changing me to be more like Jesus and to be more pleasing to Him. And thankful that God hasn’t given up on me, no matter how many times I’ve rebelled or disappointed Him. He is still at work in me.

And God does that work through Jesus Christ, who has given me His Spirit to be with me, and who deserves all the credit for any good that may be found in me. Jesus is the One who gets the glory, for ever and ever! Amen!

Pastor Vern

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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