thinking out loud

…things that are on my mind, heart, and soul

Change the Story – Join the Conspiracy

It’s Black Friday and in preparation for Christmas, Americans are spending by the billions today. Is it possible to change the story of consumerism? Is it possible that Christmas can still change the world?

I believe it is possible. And that’s why this year our community of faith will once again be joining with numerous other churches by participating in the Advent Conspiracy. This movement is based upon four critical turns in the Christmas story:

  • Worship Fully
  • Spend Less
  • Give More
  • Love All

During the Advent season, members of our community of faith will make over and above gifts to our Advent Conspiracy fund. Ever dollar received will be used to support three special mission initiatives:

Shepherd’s Heart Church: We will be helping our sisters and brothers serve the homeless population of Pittsburgh. Shepherd’s Heart operates a drop-in center in the mornings which offers coffee, some breakfast and a place to rest. The drop-in center needs a a space where they would store the paper products and food supplies used.  Our gifts will help to construct this space.

Gulf Coast Team: In March, 25 members of our community will travel to the Gulf Coast region to partner with Habitat for Humanity in the Bay/Waveland area of Mississippi  to continue the work of rebuilding following Hurricane Katerina. This will be our sixth visit to the region and we are committed to partnering with people on the ground to restore dignity and the quality of life for residents of the Gulf Coast region.

Hamlin College for Midwives (Addis Ababa, Ethiopia): The mission of the college is to train, equip, deploy and support highly skilled, trustworthy and accountable midwives, who are willing to serve women and families of rural Ethiopia. Pregnant women and their unborn children our at great risk and the women trained at the college will be trained to be instruments of change in Ethiopia.

Today (and every day) you can begin to change the story. Be a part of the conspiracy. And believe and act in such a way that the story of Christmas once again changes our world.

Stay connected…

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Filed under: advent, global poverty, gulf coast

Put on Your Boots

Our Gulf Coast team is completing a week of serving in the Houston area. Monday thru Thursday they have been primarily serving as a painting crew – working in both a residential context (Miss Pat’s) and helping a local church (Gloria Dei) recover from the aftermath of Hurricane Ike.

They will finish their work today and tomorrow with what looks to be a major challenge – mucking out a home on Galveston Island. This house has basically been ignored since Ike struck the island. The equipment of the day: high boots and respirators. Don’t they look great?!

I am so grateful to be a part of a community that is willing to roll up its sleeves, take up the towel, put on their boots and muck it up in the name and Spirit of Jesus. If you would join me in prayer, lifting them up before the Father asking God to strengthen them for the task at hand!

Stay connected…

Filed under: gulf coast

about me

my name is terry and i've been married to a great woman, patty for 29 years and we have four children, (ranging from 17-25) and an awesome grandson. i serve as lead pastor of christ community church of the south hills in pittsburgh, pa (lets go pens!). i am currently working on a book on worship with a working title of "a movable feast: a liturgy for our everyday, ordinary lives."

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