Faith E-news    June 24, 2016  

Quick Notes and Reminders    

Please check the calendar for more information.

Food Pantry Item for June is canned fruit and vegetables
This Week's Blog
 Christian Family Values 

Check your sources, folks.

Luke 9:51-62
"You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means."
In the movie Princess Bride, Mandy Patinkin's character finally speaks up after hearing Wallace Shawn's character utter the word "inconceivable" in response to every single plot twist. After more than a dozen times, it's definitely no longer "inconceivable," and it's getting pretty darn annoying.
If anyone is going to be using a word or phrase ad nauseam, they should make sure they have a real solid understanding of it.
Take note, Christians, especially, when it comes to the oft repeated term "Family Values."
For when we look in scripture, we would be hard pressed to find any examples of the nuclear family (see image). The story of family is always a little more complicated, and often includes a few extra characters. Moral outrage would ensue if some of these characters showed up in the stick figure family on your minivan window (see Genesis 16:2).
In the teaching and life of Jesus that we find in the gospels, the concept of family shifts in a shockingly different direction. Up to this point in history, family was defined by birth, marriage, or purchase (yes, I mean slavery). One's family and their place in it determined and defined all things. One's responsibility to family was paramount.
Then along comes Jesus.
And when the family of his birth comes asking for him, Jesus responds only with, "My mother and my brothers are those who hear the word of God and do it."
And to the man wanting to bury his father, Jesus says, "let the dead bury their own dead."
To the one who wants to first say goodbye to his family before following Jesus, it's basically "well, forget you, then."
To be family in Christ is to be liberated from family in the conventional sense. Members of the family of Christ are set free from the expectations and responsibilities, the roles and the hierarchy, the traditions and the norms. Not just set free from the old, but set free for something new. These men and women are set free to be part of a new family that defies every prior definition.
And throughout the gospel of Luke we see this family adding to its membership:
Fisherman, strangers with unclean spirits or leprosy, the sick and the ones with all manner of disability, tax collectors and enemies, the dead, the hungry, all the single ladies, children, foreigners and pagans, lost ones, the poor, the blind, the curious tree climbers, the sinners.
And this family is full of surprises. The Samaritans who reject Jesus in this passage are just a short time later lifted up as the "good" example of how one should relate to another. The disciples, so quick to call down fire from heaven as judgment against the Samaritans, will later find themselves on the receiving end of mercy and forgiveness.

Pastor Sarah


Parking Lot Progress 
Wow! Look at what can be done in just a few days!   

Grief Support Group Meeting  

Grief Support Group will meet at the church this Sunday, June 26, from 4:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. in the Faith Lights Room. Pastor Randy Olson and Barbara Cavallin, Ph.D. are the facilitators. Anyone who has lost a loved one, a family member, a friend or someone important to them is encouraged to come for this time of caring, sharing and prayer. It will be an informational as well as a support group.

Please join us. Please email Barbara at if you will or will not be able to come.
Faith Hosting Family Promise June 26-July 3
Our congregation will be hosting Family Promise-homeless families with children-at the Gathering House from Sunday, June 26, - Sunday, July 3. There will again be opportunities to prepare and/or serve meals, to host during the evening or overnight, and help set up and take down needed supplies. Sign-up sheets and additional information will be available in the Commons between services during the next several weeks. Please help us in providing for our guest families.

Iowa Craft Beer Tasting 

The Children and Family Ministry Team is hosting an Iowa Craft Beer Tasting on Friday, July 22, at the home of Erika and Matt Weber. This is a fundraiser for CFM, but open to all adults at Faith. All proceeds will support summer camp scholarships.

The cost is $25 per person for drinks and appetizers.

Please drop off your check in the church office to register.



Children and Family Ministry     


Youth and Family Ministry     


Youth Mission Trip

Are you all excited for the upcoming mission trip? There is a lot of important information that you need to know.  Please follow to link to access everything you need!

College Retreat

Registration is live for the College Retreat in Steamboat Springs, CO from 
July 28-August 1. It's open to all current college students and costs $200/person. Much more information is available online at, including an itinerary and registration information.