First Presbyterian Church – Cedar Rapids

July 2017

Come to him, a living stone, though rejected by mortals yet chosen and precious in God’s sight, and like living stones, let yourselves be built into a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. 1 Peter 2:4-5

The month of June was a full one for me, peppered with numerous in-home gatherings to talk about the ways in which our church is moving forward with the building and organ renovation. Each gathering has been delightful, oftentimes the discussion and fellowship spilling over the appointed hour. A big thank you to all of those who have opened their homes (and if you are like me had to quick-clean them!) and provided hospitality.

In addition to our congregation’s focus on all things brick and mortar, however, I think we also need to continue to remember all the ways we are the church apart from our fabulous space. As we read in scripture, it is through our lives that the church comes into being and shares God’s love in Christ with the world. Equally as important as the attention we are paying to entryways and organs, windows and air conditioning, is the attention we pay to developing our lives as followers of Christ and reflectors of his love.

As we move through these summer months, I’d encourage you to continue to engage your faith by participating in one of the many opportunities for worship, for growth, and for service.

  • Insight classes are continuing through much of this summer. They are held in the Wernimont room at 9am on Sunday mornings. July is looking at the intersection of faith commitments and politics. August will begin a series on issues facing the kids in our community as they head back to school.
  • Going on the road or having your grandkids come and visit? There are “take-out” church boxes in the Gathering Space to help you continue faith conversations in a different way while you may be absent from worship.
  • Neighborhood Meals and Enrichment will be hosted by our church for a second week in August. Help provide lunches for those in need. Or talk to Deb Sedlacek to help on Sunday nights at Sunday Evening meals. During the summer months many of our community partners take a break and it is the perfect time to step in and help out.
  • Help us share who we are with our community by volunteering as we open our church to the community at the Downtown Farmers’ Markets or by walking with our float in the Freedom Festival Parade.
  • Enjoy yourself and get to know your fellow First Pres members by going out to dinner with the food group, or reading a book, playing bridge, going to a baseball game or a day at the beach.

I hope you continue to have a wonderful summer, enjoying the many opportunities for rejuvenation that our area offers during these months, but I also hope you engage your faith, perhaps in a new and different way, during this time.

Grace and peace,


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