Calvary Hill Baptist Church



Calvary Connection
The Calvary Hill Baptist Church Newsletter 
April 2018


INTERIM PASTOR’S PONDERINGS

I want to thank you all for the recognition of the 50th anniversary of my ordination to the Gospel Ministry one week ago last Sunday, on March 17. I appreciated the gift card for Flemings, and I assure you it will be used and enjoyed. But even more I appreciate the comments you shared on the accompanying card. Occasions such as this are mile markers along the journey. I’ve been reflecting back over those fifty years. And being amazed at how quickly they have passed. Most of you remember the ‘60s (unless of course, as the saying goes, you really were there). They were a turbulent time. And 1968 was probably the single most eventful year of my lifetime – both nationally and personally. Indeed, eighteen days after my ordination Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated in Memphis. Such was the year 1968 for me.

The world has changed in these fifty years, but not in the way I wanted fifty years ago. I was about half way through my basic seminary degree work with plans to go forth from seminary and change the world for the better. Now it feels more like I watched it change in spite of me and my largely futile efforts. I thought I would go out and grow large churches. Size was everything at that point. Nickels and noses, as we not so jokingly said. Things easily counted so we could have good reports to make at the Monday minister’s conference of the local association. That was the definition of success in the ministry. As the years have come and gone, my idea of success has changed as much or more than the world has changed. I feel privileged to have journeyed with some very special people, many of whom are still part of the adventure. Some who even worship and serve at Calvary Hill. But I began my journey thinking that it was all about “saving souls” and growing churches (as institutions, that is). Along the way, I’ve come to believe that it is – or should be – about making disciples and participating in the advance of a Kingdom. Back then, I naively thought that culture would welcome what I wanted to invest my life doing, but I discovered I was wrong. The culture didn’t care, because “saving souls” and building churches had little or no impact on the culture. To most of the culture in which I live now, the church is not opposed; it is largely regarded as irrelevant. In this Holy Week, it’s hard not to notice that Jesus was called many things in his life, but irrelevant was never one of them!

As retirement approached three years ago, I ask myself how I wanted to invest whatever remaining time I might still have. It didn’t take me long after seminary to realize that I had been trained to manage a church that no longer existed. Over the years, I grew increasingly weary of trying to manage a church, an institution. I don’t want to finish a lifetime of ministry and have it judged by me and others as largely irrelevant. I don’t want it to be about the number of people I baptized or what kind of buildings I left behind. And not because those are bad things. I love being able to baptize people, but not to add one more to the count we get to report. I love to participate in that ancient symbol of one dying to an old life centered in oneself and beginning a new life centered in Jesus Christ.

The work of Interim Ministry seemed to afford me precisely what I wanted to do with my life at this point. I want to be remembered first and foremost as a true Christ-follower. A disciple of Jesus of Nazareth. And I want to leave behind people who have been challenged to become lifelong disciples. People who understand that they are Christ’s presence in this world. God is certainly present in all of creation. But even God had to put on flesh and a face and walk around with us in order for us to get the message. God was most fully revealed in Jesus of Nazareth who would tell his disciples, if you have seen me you have seen the Father. And then Jesus placed His Spirit in the hearts and minds of his followers so that his presence would be forever with them. Forever with you. Forever in you. Forever at work through you. So week after week, I try to reinforce that recognition within you. Don’t ever forget that you are the son or daughter of the living God. The living presence of Jesus in this place and time. And I encourage you every chance I have (like now) to have the mind in you that was in Christ Jesus. Willing to pay the price, to actually try to live as Christ’s presence in our time and space. To care about the people Jesus cared about and to non-violently confront evil. To trust that love really is stronger than hate, and demonstrate it in our actions. Not perfect any more than I am perfect. But pilgrims on their way. Culture regards such people as threats, and I want to be a part of cell of subversive Christ-followers. That’s where I’ve come over the last fifty years. It’s been an adventure. I hope there is more to come. Thank you for allowing me the privilege for whatever time we have to walk alongside you as we encourage and challenge one another to live up to our creation and our calling.


Please Mark Your Calendars – 4/8 Forum

Please plan to attend a very important congregation-wide forum discussion on April 8 at 9:45 am. The focus of the forum will be a presentation and discussion of the recently completed Building Study as well as potential next steps for the congregation to take. This forum is an outcome of the March 27 meeting of the Transition Team, Church Council, and Deacons. Copies of the Building Study are available on the welcome table in the main hall; please pick up a copy and review it prayerfully prior to April 8.



From Colleen’s Corner Room:

Calvary Hill is on a Mission for Christ!
Actually, we have TWO important mission opportunities that are coming to fruition with the power of the Holy Spirit!
Wednesday Night Dinner Meetings and Kinship Café
April 4th-Dinner and Same Kind of Different As Me. Following our Fellowship Dinner, we will view and discuss the first half of this recently released Box Office Movie. Same Kind of Different As Me is based on the inspiring true story of International art dealer Ron Hall who befriends a dangerous homeless man in order to save his struggling marriage to his wife, a woman whose dreams will lead all three of them on the journey of their lives.” Cast includes: Greg Kinnear, Renée Zellweger, and more. Please see Theresa Willard for meal orders.
April 11th --Dinner and Same Kind of Different As Me. Following our Fellowship Dinner, we will view and discuss the conclusion of this inspiring and thought-provoking movie. Please see Theresa Willard for meal orders.
April 18th-6:00-8:00pm-Kinship Café Orientation Meeting-Dinner costs will be covered by Fairfax County Kinship Institute for all attendees. Please join us to meet the County volunteers and staff as we partner in this very special opportunity to serve Our Lord by serving others. Following our shared Fellowship Dinner, there will be a brief orientation and tour for the County volunteers. No meal order is required, but please RSVP on the “Kinship Orientation Sign Up Sheet” on the hallway Bulletin Board.
April 25th-May 30th-6:00-8:00pm-Kinship Café Wednesday Nights! God has provided this ideal opportunity for all of Calvary Hill BC to grow together in Christ-like living by being the light and love of the Lord with these very special families. Dinner will be provided for the minimal cost of a “Hello! How are you?!” Please RSVP by checking your available dates and role. The roles needed include: “Attend”, “Kitchen Set Up”, “Kitchen Clean Up” or “Hall Monitor”.

Wheels for the World: Joni and Friends
Our Wheels for the World mission is rolling along! Calvary Hill BC has been approved to work with Joni and Friends based on our shared commitment to Jesus Christ and willingness to strive for Christ-like living. As we are all formally approved Chair Corps Local Representatives, please spread the word that Calvary Hill is collecting wheelchairs, walkers, crutches and canes in any condition. As Project Coordinator, I will be recruiting volunteers to make calls, pick up equipment, and arrange for the church-wide effort to transfer the equipment from our storage unit to the Walmart trucks approximately four times a year. Theresa and Maynard Willard have answered God’s call to fulfill the role of Storage and Transportation Coordinators as the first couple assigned to equipment pick-ups. So far, Theresa and Maynard have picked up 11 adult-sized wheelchairs and 3 child-sized. Our storage unit is almost full, so we will be announcing our first Saturday Morning church-wide event to move the donated equipment from the storage unit on to the Walmart Truck as soon as the pick-up date and time has been confirmed.  
Prayer Promotion
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” Philippines 4:6
As our church family of Calvary Hill BC continues to Serve Our Lord and Grow Together in Christ-Like Living though the faith-filled opportunities of the Kinship Café, Wheels for the World, P3Power Packs, Helping Hands, Card Creators, Caregiver Support, Open Mic Night and many more, please join in ALL of these God-given missions through your prayers and petitions of thanksgiving.



“Be Careful” of the Worker Who is Neither Still Nor Silent

God may be silent but I know definitely one spirit who is neither silent nor inactive – the devil. A quick comparison of Gospels shows that only Luke in Chapter 4 gives us an idea of how persistent he is. This verse is at the end of Jesus’ temptation in the desert after 40 days of fasting. “When the devil had finished all this tempting, he left him until an opportune time.” (Luke 4:13) And I asked myself, “when was an opportune time”? I’m guessing when the Devil thought Jesus was at a low time in his life – praying for his life in the garden shortly before his trial and crucifixion. The Devil knew Jesus was God’s son yet he tried to tempt him anyway. Why would any of us, not being divine like Jesus, think the Devil would stay away from us? Are we not weaker than Jesus, even at his weakest? I know I am. I truly believe the time leading up to Resurrection Sunday (or Easter) is when the Devil is at his busiest. Therefore, I think we need to be careful of this fox, this roaring lion, this angry demon who wants to pull us away from trusting in God.
So, whether we hear a specific booming voice from God or not, let us not weary of praying for our church. Whether we are tempted to be discouraged about progress in a search for a new pastor, let us not weary of praying for God’s will. Let us not weary of trusting in God.
-Rev. Anne Smith


Calvary Hill Needs You!
Calvary Hill is needing an extra teller and a back-up coffee maker for Sundays. If you are willing to take either job please see Pastor Ruth or call the church office.


 Treasurer’s Report
As of March 29, 2018, we are behind in Giving vs Expenses by $10,536.70. If our giving and spending continues at this rate, we will use all of our reserves by December. Details are below. I have at this time stopped paying all Mission Support (Lamb Center, Leland, etc.) Please prayerfully consider your support of our church and its mission.

Income as of 3/28/18
Offerings $ 37,085.11 
Building Use - Other Churches $ 6,360.00 
Building Use - Other Churches $ 150.00 
Bank Interest $ 1.19 
Total income $ 43,596.30 

Expenses as of 3/28/18
Mission Support $ 1,310.58 
Church Program Support $ 873.02 
Administrative Support $ 2,673.53 
Building & Grounds $ 12,463.71 
Personnel $ 36,812.16 
Total Expenses $ 54,133.00 

Excess Expense $(10,536.70)





Calvary Connection
The Calvary Hill Baptist Church Newsletter
March Update 2018

Just Keep Going Forward Even Though There’s Silence
In the Gospel of Matthew Chapter 26 and the Gospel of Mark Chapter 14 Jesus prays fervently three separate times in the garden. He prays for the Father’s will, not his own. The Gospels record no response from his Father. In the Gospel of Luke Chapter 22 Father God again does not answer directly to Jesus’s prayers; however, he does send an angel for strength. Interesting that the angel did not bring comfort, the angel brought strength. Is anybody in Calvary Hill praying for the Father’s will and not their own? I suspect that many of us are. Since the progress toward finding a permanent pastor is slow, I suspect that we are receiving a silent answer. But, just as in the situation with Jesus, the Father is not ignoring us. And it may seem as though he is not sending help. We just may not see his help yet. And it might just be our task, as it was with Jesus, to get up from prayer time and just walk forward trusting in God.
-Rev. Anne Smith

SPECIAL HOLY WEEK WORSHIP
As we enter the month of March, Holy Week comes into view. As we have done in some years past, we are going to join with another congregation to try to make this a special season of worship and reflection. We will be joining with Fairfax Baptist Church (the "mother church" of CHBC) for worship services on Maundy Thursday and Good Friday. Mark your calendars now and plan on being part of these opportunities:

Maundy Thursday Worship, March 29 at 7:30 p.m. at Fairfax Baptist Church

Good Friday Worship, March 30 at 11:30 a.m. at Calvary Hill Baptist Church

Sight and Sound Theatre Trip
Some of our folks have expressed an interest in attending the production of Jesus at the Sight and Sound Theatre in Lancaster, PA sometime this year. We are currently exploring ways to perhaps join with another group to go. Please sign up on the bulletin board just to let us know you may be interested in going. We have no dates yet. Also, please mark whether you would be interested in spending the night or prefer just a day trip.

Calvary Hill Needs You!

Calvary Hill is needing an extra teller and a back-up coffee maker for Sundays. If you are willing to take either job please see Pastor Ruth or call the church office.


From Colleen’s Corner Room:

Kinship Café Nights at Calvary Hill
Meeting times: 6-8pm
Meeting dates: April 25 and May 2, 9, 16, 23 & 30.

In April, Calvary Hill will serve the Lord with gladness through a new mission opportunity in partnership with the Fairfax County Kinship Care Institute. Kinship families include grandparents, uncles, aunts, distant relatives and even family friends who freely and voluntarily provide regular care and support when natural parents simply can not. Many of these kinship parents experience physical, financial and spiritual stress from the unexpected challenges of raising a child in today’s world. Many of these kinship children feel homeless as they struggle in their need for a family that they can count on. 
In response to Calvary Hill’s calling to grow in Christ-like living, we are excited to have the opportunity to serve these families with a meal and special program on Wednesday nights. Each night will start with a meal that will be shared by all. After the meal, the children will have an opportunity to participate in making pre-planned crafts and spending time together in our classrooms. The parents will remain in the sanctuary for informative and supportive group time together.
How can you serve this mission opportunity?
Calvary Hill adults, youth and children are invited to attend these special Wednesday night meetings for the opportunity to fellowship with the kinship families, share a free meal together and take the time to share family dinner time together. This is an opportunity to build relationships with families who need to feel supported, validated and loved. Simple family dinner conversations with: “Hello”, “How did your test go last week?”, “Did you have a good day in school today?”, etc. will provide the security and loving attention that are so needed by all of God’s kingdom. Additional opportunities to volunteer with food preparation or clean up, or as a “Hall Monitor” are available but not required. If you would like to work directly with the children, finger printing is required. Please see me for additional information regarding this requirement to insure safety and security for all.
The cost of this program is being shared with the Fairfax County Kinship Institute. The church’s total cost will be $180 for all 6 weeks and will be paid for by Local Benevolence funds. The Fairfax County Kinship Institute will cover all additional costs.
Please sign up on the hallway Bulletin Board for any or all Wednesday nights that you can attend, so that we can have a count for meal planning.

Calvary Connection
The Calvary Hill Baptist Church Newsletter
March 2018
INTERIM PASTOR’S PONDERINGS

At every level of our lives together, we are facing some very necessary and difficult discussions about significant but divisive topics. Nationally, we face hot topics such as what we should do in order to reduce and hopefully eliminate the mass shootings we are experiencing much too often and the difficult challenges of immigration reform. Those and other cultural issues also impact the spiritual lives of our faith communities, but those communities also face issues of theology and polity that are equally divisive. Local congregations, including Calvary Hill, face important difficult discussions about the direction of future ministry that also reveal differing understandings of who God is calling us to be and indeed the very nature of the God who is doing the calling. Needless to say, but critical to acknowledge, is the fact that these are discussions that we do not do very well. In most cases, we don't want to experience the pain or the challenge so we stick our haloed heads into the sand of denial. But the issues cannot and will not solve themselves. Instead, without our active involvement in working for solutions and reconciliation, the issues grow more powerful and more destructive. So what are we to do?

The Scripture offers us a way forward if we are courageous enough and persistent enough to actually put it into practice. Ephesians 4:15 says that in order to grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ (I'm sure you hear your own Mission Statement in those words), we are to be speaking the truth in love. How about that for a model for addressing these issues? Speak the truth, but speak it in love. Sounds simple, doesn't it? Looking a little closer at the two key words might help understand both the difficulties and how we might go about overcoming them.

The Truth is to be the content of our speech. Of course, what else would be the content! But as Mr. Pilate asked Jesus, What is truth? What I believe, is not the truth. It is just what I believe to be the truth. There was a time in my life that I believed that a jolly old fat guy came down the chimney of our house (a chimney that led directly into the furnace!) on Christmas Eve and left toys and goodies for all of us. That wasn't true in spite of the sincerity of my belief. There was time when I believed that there was only one expression of worship that was acceptable to God, and that was the form as we practiced it at the First Baptist Church of St. Johns, Missouri. That wasn't true either. I once believed that God was far away and very mean. That one lingers with me, but I no longer believe it is true. There is a difference. What I feel is not the truth. It is just what I feel. When we talk to one another about the Truth, we should always phrase our statements as, "At this point in my journey, I believe ...." A healthy dose of humility is always appropriate when discussing Truth. My perception comes from where I stand and what I have experienced thus far on my journey. But my journey is not yet complete. As Paul reminded the Corinthians, now we see only a reflection as in a mirror,...now I know in part (1 Corinthians 13:12, NRSV). So our understandings of Truth cannot be complete until the journey is complete.

None of this is to say that Truth has no standard at all. Jesus said that he was the Truth, the Way, the Life. By that he meant that his life and teachings revealed the Truth of who God is and how we can follow a Way that offers us Life now and at the end of our journey. It has been wisely said that before sharing something about someone else, we ought to ask ourselves three things about the information we are about to share. Is it true? Is it kind? Is it necessary? If the answer to any of those questions is NO, then we ought to keep the information to ourselves. I would add that if we are seeking Truth we should ask ourselves does it reflect the mind, life, and teaching of Jesus? If it does not, it is not Truth.

A big problem is that each of us thinks we they know the truth. And our brains are not easily convinced that what we already believe is not reality, not true. So we can actually experience things that contradict what we hold to be "true," but refuse to allow that experience to change what we believe. This means that we all need to do two things. We need to expose ourselves to as many understandings of Truth that differ from our own as we can. We ought to seek them out. We out to listen to them and respect them. And secondly, we need to consciously and intentionally challenge the things we "know" to be true. In the movie, Men in Black, Tommy Lee Jones' character tells Will Smith's character, Fifteen hundred years ago everyone knew the earth was the center of the universe. Five hundred years ago, everyone knew the earth was flat. What will we know tomorrow? Most of us only read things that reinforce what we already believe, only engage in conversations with those with whom we know we agree. Unless, of course, you read the Comments on Facebook! I actually try to make it a point to expose myself to ideas of perspectives that challenge my own. (Just not the Comments section on Facebook! That's pointless and painful.) I know how hard it is to change my own belief system, even if it wrong. Humility. One of the good things.

Paul's point earlier in 1 Corinthians that I quoted above (vv. 1-3) is that no matter how pious or holy an action might be, if it is not done in love it is worthless. In Ephesians that same thing is said of speaking truth. If we do not enter these difficult but important conversations acting out of love that is genuine compassion and concern for the others engaged in the conversations, we are not growing into the mature body of Him who is the head, Christ. Social media has allowed us to hide in electronic devices where we don't have to confront the pain and hurt we cause with hateful words and arrogant claims to the sole grasp of Truth. Speaking the truth in love is to making yourself vulnerable out of respect for the other person(s) engaged in the conversation. It is always true that the Head, that is Christ, loves all participants and wants to help each one come to have the mind that is His mind. I promise you, that mind is not your mind. Nor is it my mind. But becoming vulnerable in the presence of the Spirit and facing these polarizing issue by sharing the truth as we see it, listening to the truth as others see it, and doing it all in love is the only way we grow and mature in Christ-like living. If these kinds of discussions cannot happen within communities called into being by the God who is Love for the very purpose of being the human expression of the Way, the Truth, and the Life then we are without hope for resolving them.

SPECIAL HOLY WEEK WORSHIP

As we enter the month of March, Holy Week comes into view. As we have done in some years past, we are going to join with another congregation to try to make this a special season of worship and reflection. We will be joining with Fairfax Baptist Church (the "mother church" of CHBC) for worship services on Maundy Thursday and Good Friday. Mark your calendars now and plan on being part of these opportunities:

Maundy Thursday Worship, March 29 at 7:30 p.m. at Fairfax Baptist Church

Good Friday Worship, March 30 at 11:30 a.m. at Calvary Hill Baptist Church

Sight and Sound Theatre Trip
Some of our folks have expressed an interest in attending the production of Jesus at the Sight and Sound Theatre in Lancaster, PA sometime this year. We are currently exploring ways to perhaps join with another group to go. Please sign up on the bulletin board just to let us know you may be interested in going. We have no dates yet. Also, please mark whether you would be interested in spending the night or prefer just a day trip.

Calvary Hill Needs You!

Calvary Hill is needing an extra teller. If you are interested in becoming a teller, please see Pastor Ruth or call the church office.

Our next Open Mic Night/Coffeehouse will be this Saturday, March 10, 6:30-9:30. If you are able to donate some food for this event it will be much appreciated! We will need cookies, cheese, crackers, grapes. Items may be brought in before Saturday (labeled Open Mic Night), or Saturday evening. For our planning, please let Pastor Ruth know if you can bring something.




Lunch Bunch Prepares for Easter

Lent serves as a time of reflection in preparation for Easter week, and in keeping with this theme -- during March, Lunch Bunch will be watching the Academy-award winning movie The Robe. E.B. Vandiver III will introduce this 1950's classic film and lead the discussion.

NOTE: The group has not given up sweets during Lent, and the traditional delicious home-made desserts will still be served during this time! 




From Colleen’s Corner Room:
“The word “RETIREMENT” is not in the Bible”
-Pastor Rick Warren, Purpose Driven Life
It is easy to use the changes that come from aging as a reason or excuse for retiring from serving the Lord. Still, Christ-like living calls us to live in service every day of our lives. As Scripture provides: “not by works but by him who calls—she was told, “The older will serve the younger.” (Romans 9:12). Also: “Serve wholeheartedly, as if you were serving the Lord, not people.” Ephesians 6:7. And the well- known verse: “Serve the Lord with gladness” Psalm 100:2. But, how do we continue to serve the Lord and grow in Christ-like living when the reality of aging so often interferes?

Kinship Café Nights at Calvary Hill
Meeting times: 6-8pm
Meeting dates: April 25 and May 2, 9, 16, 23 & 30.

In April, Calvary Hill will serve the Lord with gladness through a new mission opportunity in partnership with the Fairfax County Kinship Care Institute. Kinship families include grandparents, uncles, aunts, distant relatives and even family friends who freely and voluntarily provide regular care and support when natural parents simply can not. Many of these kinship parents experience physical, financial and spiritual stress from the unexpected challenges of raising a child in today’s world. Many of these kinship children feel homeless as they struggle in their need for a family that they can count on. 
In response to Calvary Hill’s calling to grow in Christ-like living, we are excited to have the opportunity to serve these families with a meal and special program on Wednesday nights. Each night will start with a meal that will be shared by all. After the meal, the children will have an opportunity to participate in making pre-planned crafts and spending time together in our classrooms. The parents will remain in the sanctuary for informative and supportive group time together.
How can you serve this mission opportunity?
Calvary Hill adults, youth and children are invited to attend these special Wednesday night meetings for the opportunity to fellowship with the kinship families, share a free meal together and take the time to share family dinner time together. This is an opportunity to build relationships with families who need to feel supported, validated and loved. Simple family dinner conversations with: “Hello”, “How did your test go last week?”, “Did you have a good day in school today?”, etc. will provide the security and loving attention that are so needed by all of God’s kingdom. Additional opportunities to volunteer with food preparation or clean up, or as a “Hall Monitor” are available but not required. If you would like to work directly with the children, finger printing is required. Please see me for additional information regarding this requirement to insure safety and security for all.
The cost of this program is being shared with the Fairfax County Kinship Institute. Our cost will be $30 per night, for a total of $180. The Fairfax County Kinship Institute will cover all additional costs.
Please sign up on the hallway Bulletin Board for any or all Wednesday nights that you can attend, so that we can have a count for meal planning.

February 2018


BWA Day
Baptist World Alliance Day 2018 is February 3-4, 2018, a day Baptists are encouraged to worship together and pray for one another in their churches all around the world. 
This day was originally established as "Baptist World Sunday," in 1927, when the BWA Executive Committee, meeting in London, asked President Edgar Mullins and General Secretary John Rushbrooke to prepare a "Special Statement" to express clearly the purpose of the BWA. The Statement emphasized that the BWA "seeks to express and promote unity and fellowship among the Baptists of the world." Usually celebrated on the first Sunday of February each year, BWA Day was moved in 2006 to the first Sunday in May, but for several years now has been back to its February date. Recognizing that some members of the BWA family worship on Saturday, the first Sunday and the Saturday immediately preceding it became the new dates for BWA Day in 2009.
Baptist churches are encouraged to include BWA Day in their annual calendar. The celebration is aimed at affirming Baptist identity within the worldwide Christian family. Baptists are encouraged to pray for each other and to renew their commitment to cooperate with Baptists globally through the BWA.
2018 BWA Day worship materials were prepared by Rev. Dr. Lina Toth (Andronoviene), Assistant Principal & Lecturer in Practical Theology at the Scottish Baptist College of the University of the West of Scotland. These materials are available in serval languages on the BWA website: www.bwanet.org.
To receive weekly prayer concerns from BWA, please email bwa@bwanet.org


INTERIM PASTOR’S PONDERINGS
She showed me a text she had received and asked me to read it. After I read it, she asked me what I thought about it. I asked her what she wanted to know and she replied that she “didn’t like the tone” and wanted to know what I thought of the tone. That’s when I got myself in trouble. I said, “The text itself has no tone. It’s just words on a computer screen. Any tone you get from those words is tone you bring to the text yourself.” I think that is very true. Even if the author of the text wrote some kind of “tone” underlying his words, that tone isn’t part of the text.

This incident reminded me of an article I had read recently. An article from Inc. by Minda Zetlin entitled You Should Never, Ever Argue with Anyone on Facebook, According to Science states:
We respond very differently to what people write than to what they say--even if those things are exactly the same. That's the result of a fascinating new experiment by UC Berkeley and University of Chicago researchers. In the study, 300 subjects read, watched video of, or listened to arguments about such hot-button topics as war, abortion, and country or rap music. Afterward, subjects were interviewed about their reactions to the opinions with which they disagreed.
Their general response was probably very familiar to anyone who's ever discussed politics: a broad belief that people who don't agree with you are either too stupid or too uncaring to know better. But there was a distinct difference between those who had watched or listened to someone speak the words out loud and those who had read the identical words as text. Those who had listened or watched someone say the words were less likely to dismiss the speaker as uninformed or heartless than they were if they were just reading the commenter's words.

In other words, the only “tone” in the printed word is that the reader brings to reading it and through which the meaning of the writing is interpreted. That’s not a real problem if the purpose of the writing is didactic, that is, teaching content or is responding to a direct question or a similar purpose that is largely focused on the exchange of factual information. If, on the other hand, the purpose is personal or relational rather than informational, it can be a large problem! The point of this is that if you want to build relationships, you best do your communicating face-to-face (actually or electronically) as much as possible. Tone and nuance and the ability to immediately check on what you are hearing are all critical to building healthy relationships. During the “Baptist wars” there was no shortage of name-calling and denigrating of the other side. The other side, the enemy, is a faceless “them” who embodies and practices everything that is evil and destructive. During those years, a group of four of us met every Friday for lunch. One of us was on each polar end of the Baptist continuum and two were in the middle, one leaning ever so slightly to opposite poles. The issues that divided us were discussed in these face-to-face lunch sessions, but absent was the name-calling and the demonizing. Why? Because around the table we were all “us.” Real human beings with names and families and feelings and ministries.

This reality has many implications. Theologically, even God could not communicate relationally with us without putting on a face and becoming one of us so we could share at the deepest level. So the Word became flesh in Jesus of Nazareth and lived among us. He taught and lived that by entering into relationship with him we could know what God was like and experience relationship with God. To see him (to know him), Jesus said, was to see and know God. It also has implications for how we relate to one another, especially when we are confronted with difficult issues of significance over which we have sincere differences. Dealing with those issues in a way that can strengthen the relationship, that is face-to-face and with respect and a desire to truly understand one another, and will keep us from being able to just dismiss one another as uninformed or uncaring. Make no mistake, that’s tough work! But so was emptying himself and taking on the form of a slave and being obedient to the point of death – even death on a cross (Philippians 2:7-11)! But then, as now, that is the way to the narrow gate and hard road that leads to life. A way that, according to Jesus, few find (Matthew 7:13-14). May we be willing to do this hard work so that we can be persons through whom others can experience the love and grace of God in relationship with us.

Community Connections
As we continue to seek ways to carry out our mission statement, we have an opportunity to share God’s love with the community as well as partner with another MACBF church in our area. Fairfax Baptist Church has invited us to join them in providing a Vacation Bible School for children from kindergarten-6th grade. They are planning a week-long program in the evenings, either in late July or early August. This is a meaningful way to reach children as well as work together to strengthen Christ’s presence in our community. If you would like to volunteer in this outreach, please talk to Pastor Ruth about how you can best serve.

From Colleen’s Corner Room:
“Showing up fully exactly where you are, is the fastest way to get where you want to go!” - Marie Forleo
During the month of January, I was only able to “show up” for Sunday Services at Calvary Hill the first week. I knew about my upcoming absences, and while they were all for the worthy reasons of family travel, I began missing Calvary Hill before I even left.
God focused my thoughts and feelings about my absences even more at my first session of Leland classes last week. My professor, Dr. Shirin, posed the hypothetical situation of wanting to watch a football game on any given Sunday morning rather than attend church services. He asked the class, how we might encourage and motivate him to attend church rather than watching tv. Dr. Shirin asked if we might tell him that attending church is the obedient thing to do? (As Christians we strive to be obedient). He asked if we might tell him that the church service and music would be entertaining? (Our Praise Band, choir and piano solos are certainly beautiful, lively and entertaining). He asked if we might tell him that it would be great social fun (and again, we certainly do share a lot of love, laughter and fellowship together). Could it be for the doughnuts?
Finally, like the slow to understand disciples of Jesus, my classmates and I understood and acknowledged that worshiping God together is essential for every Christian simply because God is there. God is there in every song, every prayer, every smile and every word of encouragement. As Scripture tells us: “For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them." Matthew 18:20. 
I sincerely missed meeting YOU at church those four Sunday mornings in January-but most of all I missed meeting God with and through you. I missed the grace of Christ our Savior, the love of God our Father, and the fellowship of Spirit forever ever and ever. See you Sunday! 

Power Pack Ministry Update
God is continuing to use Calvary Hill as a vehicle for His love at Little Run Elementary! Early in January, we delivered 50 Power Packs and so were able to provide additional support beyond our monthly commitment of 30. Then, using some of the designated funds received at Christmas, we made an extra delivery of 30 Power Packs in mid-January to provide extra food for students over the 4-day weekend at the end of January. Lastly, we just provided 60 Power Packs for the first week of February. These will cover our February commitment plus provide support for an additional weekend in February. Thanks goes to Kids on the Hill, the Youth (plus Youth parents!), and additional willing hands for their help in packing the bags.

As we turn toward the next batch of Power Packs for March, please continue to check the bulletin board for updated information on the types of food that are most needed as well as opportunities to sign up to pack bags. Currently, we are most in need of individual servings of lunch and dinner items such as Chef Boyardee pasta, Mac and Cheese cups, and tuna salad kits. Please let Chris or Beth Ann Velo know if you have any questions.


​CHOIR
Join the Choir for the up-coming Easter Season! Our first two Choir Practices will be held Wednesdays, February 7th and 21st, at 7 pm. Adults and teens welcome!


Congregational Teams Update
Church Council has been working to establish the roster of Congregational Teams based on the input provided on responses to the Congregational Teams Survey conducted by the Transition Team. Building this roster is an important step in enabling us to put our Mission into action by ensuring that we have the necessary organizational structure to support the things that we feel God is calling us to do in carrying out our Mission. Identifying individuals to serve also increases transparency by clarifying “who is doing what” and letting everyone know whom to contact for any particular ministry or administrative area.

Therefore, Church Council requests that if you have not yet volunteered to help that you please do so by contacting the church office. Please remember that all the various ways of serving at the church are not just “jobs,” but rather are opportunities to share the spiritual gifts that God has given us in order to do His work. We especially need to hear from anyone who is currently serving in any capacity, intends to continue doing so, and has not yet responded. In building the Congregational Teams roster, Church Council will not assume that anyone who is currently serving wishes to continue to do so unless they say so explicitly. If you have questions, please contact Janet Anderson or Beth Ann Velo.







Calvary Connection 
The Calvary Hill Baptist Church Newsletter
January 2018


Remembering In Sympathy

Please be in prayer for the family of our sister Pat Elder. Funeral arrangements are as follows: The viewing will be held on Friday, Jan. 5, from 2-4 pm & from 6-8 pm at National Memorial Park (7482 Lee Hwy, Falls Church, VA 22042). A service will be held on Saturday, Jan. 6th at 1 pm at National Memorial Park followed by a reception at Calvary Hill Baptist Church. The interment will be held at Quantico at 11 am on Monday, Jan. 8th. 

INTERIM PASTOR’S PONDERINGS

A new day is clearly marked by the rising of the sun. A new month can easily be noted by the beginning of a new lunar cycle – the appearance of a new moon, as did the ancient Hebrews (among many other peoples). The solar calendar is more concerned with the marking of a new year, especially so as to identify agricultural seasons. All of these divisions of time are related to the observed phenomena of the created order. Unlike the new day and the new month, however, it is less clear when the new year should begin. Why not in the spring, with the new life that becomes apparent? We have, of course, come to accept January 1 as the beginning of the new year – stretching all the way back to the Babylonians – in the celebration of the new year. They noticed that it was this time of the year when the days began to get longer, rather than shorter. They concluded that the sun was not dying but coming back to life. A cause for celebration!

We continue the celebration, although we have long since lost the mystery (and the awe that accompanies mystery) of the causes for the phenomena we observe. Even scientific ages, however, find it difficult to resist the temptation to use the occasion of a new year to encourage changes in our lives. We could use the “first day” of every week as such an occurrence. Or even the first light of every day as an opportunity for improvement. God is even willing to give us opportunities for repentance and life-changing commitments on a moment-to-moment basis. But it seems that the “year thing” works better for us, thus our New Year’s Resolutions.

And I’m ready for a new year. On a personal level, 2017 was an improvement on recent years and ended in a rather encouraging state. But it also included some pretty painful and unpleasant times. I’m also reminded of the truth of the definition of insanity as doing things the same way and expecting a different result. That means if I want things to be different in 2018, I need to do some things differently. I need to think differently. To act differently. That’s not how I want it, of course. I want to remain comfortably in my view of the way things are. I want to be able to behave in all the ways in which I’ve become comfortable. And then I want everything in my life to change and become like I want it to be. That’s insanity, according to the definition above, and it is also not going to happen. The truth is that it is hard to change. That’s why most of our new year’s resolutions never work. But in order for me to make the changes that I need to make, I need only convince one person – myself. That also happens to be the one person on the planet that I can control, which makes the whole thing at least possible. Now, to think about changing an institution (i.e., a church) requires so much more. And I’ve already got my hands full with me. Anybody out there willing to take on that challenge? I see that hand ... don’t I?


Update on the Intentional Interim Process

The progress continues, and we are getting close to the time when the work of the Transition Team will shift its primary function to that of the Pastor Search Team. A reminder that there is a called business meeting following worship on Sunday, January 28 for the purpose of voting on constitutional amendments that will bring the constitution and bylaws into agreement with actions and revised structures which the congregation has adopted. There will also be a Forum on Sunday morning, January 21 beginning at 9:30 a.m. which will focus on the connections with denominational entities that are currently in place and/or are available to the congregation and its members. We’ll also talk about where the money you give through CHBC goes as it leaves here and goes to these denominational ministry partners. These are significant issues that many people do not know. Please plan on being present.




From Colleen’s Corner Room:

Happy New Year! The Christmas Celebration of Christ’s Birth was joyously inspiring after our long anticipation of Advent. Now, as we move into the work of living out Christ’s calling for us, I am excited by our strength and commitment to Him, to each other and to the world. 2018 offers many exciting opportunities for Calvary Hill:
Mission and Outreach Opportunities
We will continue to provide the monthly Power Pack weekend meals for Little Run Elementary School. Please remember to add a few of the necessary items in your shopping cart for our neighborhood kids.
Helping Hands will continue each month with dinner, an organized craft or activity and opportunities to socialize. This is a meaningful opportunity to serve adults with intellectual deficits who welcome the opportunity to meet each month. Volunteers are needed to help in the kitchen and to socialize and assist with the participants. 
We will finish up the ElderLink Caregiver Program: Caring for You, Caring for Me on January 18th. This program from the Roslyn Carter Institute was very well attended and appreciated by local caregivers struggling to balance self-care with providing the care that their loved ones need.
Wheels Around the World Program was introduced with DVD presentation and discussion. This program offers a variety of much-needed opportunities to serve, including:
oRegularly calling to healthcare organizations for possible medical equipment donations. Contacting the same staff at the same location will help to build relationships for greater assistance and donations
oCollecting the medical equipment and driving the equipment to the Storage Unit on Fred Oaks Dr in Burke (Off of Fairfax County Parkway near the Rte 123 Exit)
oCard-Creators donations of handmade, inspirational blank greeting cards for the prisoners to remember their loved ones
oBlankets for wheelchairs and scooters that are handmade specifically to meet the dimensions needed for equipment.
oWalker bags that attach to the front of walkers and rollators to store important items such as cell phones for emergency calls
oShawls and scarves for bed bound individuals

For Worship and Strength: Body and Spirit
REVISED Prayer Embodiment (Yoga) Schedule
I will be traveling quite a bit during the month of January, so please note all class cancellations. 
Classes will NOT meet on the following dates:
Monday January 8
Monday January 15
Friday January 19

Hypothermia Program Update

We want to thank Bob and Patty Peterson for all their hard work in coordinating our participation in the Facets Hypothermia Program this March, and for their dedication to meeting the needs of our homeless population in Fairfax County. After much consideration, they have decided that we cannot participate in the program after all, due to a very small number of volunteers and ongoing concerns about our building’s ability to meet the needs of a week of sheltering 38 guests. We regret having to make such a decision, but the staff and Church Council agree that it is the right one at this time.
If you are interested in helping in some way in the hypothermia program through another church, please contact Maria Avila at 703-267-2503, or mavila@facetscares.org.


Calvary Hill Needs You!

Please considering helping to un-decorate the sanctuary on Wednesday, Jan. 10th, at 10 am. A pizza lunch will be provided. Thank You!


Power Packs
 Thanks to all who supported the Power Pack ministry for Little Run over the past month – your continued strong support enabled us to deliver 50 power packs for the first week of January. The extras that we provide above our monthly commitment of 30 help the school to meet needs that are otherwise challenging to meet and the coordinators at Little Run have repeatedly expressed their gratitude to Calvary Hill for its support. Thanks also goes to Kids on the Hill, who put their recent Bible lesson on bringing peace to others into action by packing the bags on December 31.

We are now beginning work on the Packs that will be due to Little Run at the beginning of February, so please check the bulletin board in the main hall for the most up-to-date information on what foods are needed most. At this time, items most needed are individual servings of fruit in 100% juice, raisins, or applesauce packs as well as lunch and dinner items such as Chef Boyardee, mac & cheese, or tuna salad packs. And as always, please continue to be in prayer for the recipients of this food, their families, and the volunteers and staff at Little Run who coordinate the program.


INCLEMENT WEATHER POLICY

In the event that inclement weather forces us to cancel Sunday services, we will change the message on the answering machine at the church so that you may call after 7:30 a.m. on Sunday morning. If you get the normal message (no mention of services being canceled) it means that the services will be held as scheduled. If services are canceled or altered, there will be a message explaining the change. If we cancel other events, we will make every effort to contact those we think might be present, but we will also put a message on the answering machine. Deacons will call their families with the notification. We will also post a status update on the Facebook page and our website Home page. While your presence is always meaningful, the fact that we may be having worship services in inclement weather does not mean that you have to be here if it is not safe. Safety is our top priority on these occasions!

New Church Logo Contest
Calling all creative thinkers! After many years of using our current church logo on our church bulletin cover and other church publications, Church Council has approved a proposal to change our church logo to reflect our move into the future of Calvary Hill with a new design.
Please email your design to the church office for consideration. The deadline for submissions is January 15. Church@calvaryhillbc.org






Calvary Connection
Update 
The Calvary Hill Baptist Church Newsletter 
December Update


INCLEMENT WEATHER POLICY

In the event that inclement weather forces us to cancel Sunday services, we will change the message on the answering machine at the church so that you may call after 7:30 a.m. on Sunday morning. If you get the normal message (no mention of services being canceled) it means that the services will be held as scheduled. If services are canceled or altered, there will be a message explaining the change. If we cancel other events, we will make every effort to contact those we think might be present, but we will also put a message on the answering machine. Deacons will call their families with the notification. We will also post a status update on the Facebook page and our website Home page. While your presence is always meaningful, the fact that we may be having worship services in inclement weather does not mean that you have to be here if it is not safe. Safety is our top priority on these occasions!


CHRISTMAS AND GIVING

It’s impossible to separate Christmas and giving. The event that is celebrated at Christmas is itself a Gift. Here is a King who emptied himself of royal privilege and became a helpless baby born to a young couple who were poor and powerless. In spite of that, the heavens proclaimed his birth and seekers came bringing with them precious gifts. We continue that tradition by giving gifts to one another at the Christmas season. But what about a gift for the One who started it all? It hardly seems right to have a birthday celebration and give gifts to everyone except the one having the birthday.

You will be given an opportunity to do just that as part of the Christmas Eve Candlelight Communion service. As we follow shepherds, magi, and millions of kings and peasants through the centuries on a journey to the Child of Christmas, we encourage you to bring your gift with you as your personal act of worship of and commitment to this Child.

We encourage you to consider making this gift the most significant one you give at this Christmas season. It goes to support the Kingdom work of the Child who became the King of a Kingdom like no other. That work needs your support. But you also need to practice generosity for your own spiritual growth and well-being. As this Child would teach, it is better to give than to receive and where your treasure is there will be your heart also. No apologies for urging God’s people to give and to give generously and sacrificially for the sake of the Kingdom and their own spiritual growth. 



Treasurer’s Report
As of November 30, 2018

Income$195,783.45
Expense$202,657.42
Difference$ -6,837.97

Income includes rental fees from the churches who share our building as well as from the nursery vendors in front. The final payment for our building insurance is due in December, so expect expenses to rise.

Our total budgeted income through November is $ 274,956, leaving $68,488.84 that we haven’t contributed towards projects for God’s kingdom that we wanted to accomplish this year.


Transition Team
If you have not done so already, please remember to pick up a copy of the congregational team descriptions and survey form to indicate the area(s) in which you feel led to participate in carrying out the work that puts Calvary Hill’s mission into action. Both items are available on the welcome table in the main hall. Completed forms may be placed in the designated box on the welcome table. If you’d prefer to receive a copy of the team descriptions by e-mail, please contact the church office. Please see any member of the Transition Team if you have questions.

Power Packs
We are well on our way to meeting our January Power Pack commitment for Little Run Elementary but are still in need of lunch and dinner items such as individual servings of macaroni and cheese, Chef Boyardee pasta, or tuna salad kits. Contributions are due to the church by December 24. Monetary contributions designated for “Little Run” are also welcome. Thank you for your continued support!

2018 Offering Envelopes
Offering envelopes will be available for pickup in the fellowship hall beginning December 17. Please contact Beth Ann Velo at em.velo@verizon.net or by leaving a message at the church office if you have any questions.

New Church Logo Contest
Calling all creative thinkers! After many years of using our current church logo on our church bulletin cover and other church publications, Church Council has approved a proposal to change our church logo to reflect our move into the future of Calvary Hill with a new design.
Please email your design to the church office for consideration. The deadline for submissions is January 15. Church@calvaryhillbc.org


Join us Sunday, Dec. 17th, along with the Fairfax Baptist Church Family, at 5:30pm for an evening of 
caroling in downtown Fairfax.  

We will meet at 5:30pm in the parking lot of Woody’s Ice Cream (10435 North Street Fairfax, VA).




Your Church Staff is grateful for each of you and for every expression of love you have shared with us throughout the year. May the Peace and Presence of Christ fill your Christmas and bless you throughout the New Year!






Calvary Connection 
The Calvary Hill Baptist Church Newsletter 
December 2017

INTERIM PASTOR’S PONDERINGS

Here we go again. The annual “War on Christmas.” I’m not sure exactly when or by whom there was a declaration of war, and I find myself increasingly disturbed by the use of the term “war” to describe what is happening in our culture. Real wars, with real casualties, abound in our world this Christmas season. Refugees in the millions. Starvation. Hatred abounding and destruction everywhere. Suffering and hopelessness. That’s real war. The so-called War on Christmas in this country is not even an inconvenience. As a people, we are very good at fighting shooting, bombing, killing wars. Not so good with wars fought in some other way. Consider, we declared War on Poverty. Poverty has won. We declared War on Drugs. Drugs have won. We just don’t seem to do very good in a war that’s fought with ideas and relationships and won by enhancing life rather than by dropping bombs and firing missiles. Just consider the battlefields of the so-called War on Christmas. It’s primarily words. Do we say Merry Christmas or Happy Holidays? To say the latter is to launch a battle in the war against Christmas. Christmas tree or Holiday tree? Do these really deserve to be called battles in a war?

The reality is that there are two Christmases celebrated in our culture every year. There is the secular Christmas of Santa and winter wonderlands and exchanging cards and gifts and family gatherings. These are not evil things and bring great joy to many people. Then there is the Christmas that is a spiritual remembrance of God’s entry into his world. And a reminder that he comes into our lives and our world over and over and over again for those who are looking for his appearing. We really need to keep the distinction clear in our minds. The secular Christmas is part of our culture, and it is celebrated by many people who are not Jesus followers. Many of us who are Jesus followers also participate in and enjoy this secular Christmas. That’s not a problem, unless we also try to insist that the secular Christmas celebrations also affirm the values of the spiritual Christmas. That is the boundary along which the war clouds quickly gather.

It is not possible for anyone to win a war against Christmas. The reality of Christmas as a spiritual celebration exists in us totally apart from anything those who celebrate only the secular Christmas can say or do. No one has the power stop you from saying all the “Merry Christmases” you want to share. An employer, however, does have the right to instruct employees who are representing the business to greet shoppers with a “Happy Holidays” in order to include all the business’ customers in the secular celebration of Christmas.

While no one has the power to rob us of our spiritual Christmas, it is possible for those of us for whom Christmas is a truly spiritual journey to surrender its significance. We do that when we allow ourselves to be drawn into behaving in ways that reflect the culture and not the Christ. That would include the concession that someone, anyone, can somehow steal or destroy our spiritual Christmas. We can always find – or be – God appearing once again! So if you really want to make this a spiritual Christmas, thus keeping Christ in Christmas, the only person who has the power to stop you from doing so is yourself. Feed the hungry. Comfort the grieving. Soothe the hurting. Welcome the stranger. And support those who are doing that in ways and places where you as an individual are not able to do so. Even if they don’t claim to do it in Jesus’ name sometimes. As our text last Sunday from Matthew 25 made clear, when you do those things, you are doing the work of Jesus even if you don’t realize it. So have it! Make this the most spiritual, Jesus-like Christmas of your whole life. Merry Christmas! And Happy Holidays!



From Church Council
At the December 17th Business Meeting we will be discussing proposed changes to the Calvary Hill Baptist Church Constitution. Copies of the proposed changes can be found on our Document Page of the Web Site http://www.calvaryhillbc.org/Document-Center.html and also hard copies will be located at the Welcome Desk in the main hallway of the church. We plan to vote on the changes at a following Called Business Meeting (date to be determined).



Transition Team Update
 The Transition Team hosted a congregation-wide forum on November 19 to present its two newest work products coming out of the Intentional Interim Ministry (IIM): a church Vision Statement and a congregational team structure that provides the organizational infrastructure necessary to implement the Vision Statement. Both of these are outgrowths of Calvary Hill’s mission to “grow together in Christ-like living, share God’s love with the community and the world, and welcome all to join in the journey.” The Vision Statement conveys how we will put that mission into action:

Understanding that we are Christ’s presence in the world, it is Calvary Hill’s vision to become a congregation that is continually impacting the community by helping God’s kingdom grow in and through us. We are recognizing each individual’s responsibility to grow in Christ, follow wherever God might lead, intentionally build relationships, and seek and create opportunities to humbly and selflessly serve.

In order to fully implement our mission and vision, the Transition Team recognizes the need for a congregational team structure. A structure was proposed which defines areas of responsibility for carrying out the work of the church and fully supports the church mission and vision. Most importantly, it provides opportunity to all in the congregation to have a role in carrying out the work of the church. In fact, active participation and commitment will be required from everyone in order to put Calvary Hill’s mission into action.

The Transition Team therefore asks everyone to please prayerfully consider the area(s) in which they would be interested in serving. In order to do that, if you have not already done so, please pick up two items from the welcome table in the main hall of the church: (1) a copy of the congregational team descriptions and (2) a brief form where you can indicate the area(s) in which you feel led to serve. Completed forms may be submitted to the box on the welcome table. If you would prefer to receive a copy of the team descriptions by e-mail, please contact the church office.

NorthStar & BGAV Annual Meeting Update

NorthStar Church Network held its annual meeting on 4 November 2017, at First Baptist Church of Springfield. They announced their 2018 Vision – the Art of Neighboring. NorthStar understands that some churches are experiencing downsizing in membership and contributions. To assist the network churches NorthStar is emphasizing that all churches urge their members to grow neighborly relationships with at least eight (8) of their neighbors, especially those they have never talked to before. Growing these relationships could result in church members inviting their neighbors to church worship or church events held for the community. Some may even learn a new way to evangelize to unchurched people in their neighborhood. The NorthStar has also been growing their website with information and valuable tools: Church Planting, Pastor’s Network, Women’s Network, Youth Leaders, Hispanic Networks, ESL & EFL, and Disaster Relief.

The Baptist General Association of Virginia (BGAV) held its annual meeting 13-15 November 2017 in Hampton, Virginia. The theme was “Advancing the Kingdom Together.” They reported on the many activities and programs the various BGAV committees had accomplished during the year. They held several valuable breakout sessions to give attending pastors new ideas for their ministry and discuss topics of current social and political significance. Dr. Jeff Willetts was there with a booth in the Ministry Fair Exhibition Hall. He was also there to sign an agreement between BGAV and the McAfee School of Theology with Mercer University. This will be very good advertisement for the McAfee programs.

Rev. Anne Smith

Power Pack Update
Thanks to all for generously supporting the Power Pack ministry at Little Run Elementary over the last month with food, effort, and prayer. We have been blessed with such strong support that we were able to provide 114 bags of food – that is nearly twice the number we had committed to provide for the month of December! The extra bags will enable Little Run to provide more food to students to have at home over the Christmas break. This ministry is having a tangible impact in our community so please continue your support in any way you are able: food or monetary contributions (designated for Little Run) as well as prayer for the recipients of this food and the staff and volunteers at Little Run.

New Church Logo Contest
Calling all creative thinkers! After many years of using our current church logo on our church bulletin cover and other church publications, Church Council has approved a proposal to change our church logo to reflect our move into the future of Calvary Hill with a new design.
Please email your design to the church office for consideration. The deadline for submissions is January 15. Church@calvaryhillbc.org


Lunch Bunch 
On December 7 at 11 am a film documentary is scheduled in honor of Pearl Harbor Day. Afterwards, we will share memories and old photos of loved ones who served in World War II.
The Annual Senior Christmas party will take place on December 14 (NOTE: there will be no meeting on the 3rd Thursday in December). In addition to a delicious holiday lunch (at no charge), tentative plans include a carol sing-along led by Rev. Trish Manarin. Following the meal, we’ll ask each other some of the 300 questions found in The Christmas Conversation Piece, a little book that offers surprising and amusing yuletide questions to ask family and friends during holiday gatherings. For example – Question # 278: What color do you think Santa’s hair was before it turned white?
Be sure to sign up for this event on the main hallway’s bulletin board. And let Kitty Shaw-Gardner or Rev. Ruth Muhlbauer know if you need a ride.


Bethlehem Walk 2017!
Join us for the 2017 Bethlehem Walk, leaving Calvary Hill’s parking lot on December 10th at 2:30 pm, we will be driving to Parkwood Baptist Church. At Parkwood we will tour a re-creation of a street in Bethlehem at the birth of Christ. Enjoy live performances, animals, music, and refreshments!
After the Bethlehem Walk return at Calvary Hill for a Chili Supper at 4 pm. If you are willing to bring a crock pot of chili on the 10th please sign up on the bulletin board in the mail hallway.

Schedule Changes
*Our Comfort for Christmas mourners program on Dec. 6th will be cancelled. It will be incorporated into one of the Sunday services during advent.  
 *Youth’s Christmas Party will begin at 7 pm on Dec. 17th.


In the Community

Dec. 2, 2017 - 6 pm - Movie "WE ARE STRONGER"
  - tickets at www.strongermovie.com/schedule
  - This will be shown at National Museum of the Marine  
  Corps
  - Address: 18900 Jefferson Davis Hwy, Triangle, VA
  - Movie is faith-based and explores a veteran's battle with  
  PTSD

Dec. 5, 2017 - 11 am- 2 pm - NorthStar's 15 Anniversary Open House
  - Address: 7100 Columbia Pike, Annandale, VA 22003
  - Phone: (703) 941-6822
  - hors d'oeuvres will be served
Calvary Connection
Update 
The Calvary Hill Baptist Church Newsletter 
November Update 2017 

From Colleen’s Corner Room:
Many of us have enjoyed our study of the motion picture, The Shack. In this study, we have learned that God often uses a variety of ways to reach out to us with the message that we are especially loved despite the tangled mess we may feel deep inside ourselves. We have also learned that our feelings of chaos and pain only increase when we focus our attention on them, but turning our attention to Christ’s Word calms our inner churning and provides ultimate peace. We will continue to meet for the final two weeks of this study. Meetings are held at the conclusion of Christian Yoga on Monday mornings at 10:45am.
Coming for Christmas:
A new DVD study will be presented on December 4, 11 and 18 from 10:45-11:45am. In this three-week study entitled The Purpose of Christmas, Pastor Warren reviews how Christmas is a time for celebration, salvation and reconciliation. The Purpose of Christmas shows why Christmas is God's idea and why Jesus is the greatest gift God gave to the world. All are welcome to attend.

Transition Team Update
The Transition Team will be holding a church-wide forum on November 19 at 9:30 to share its work on a church Vision Statement and congregational team structure, both of which will enable us as a church to carry out our mission to “grow together in Christ-like living, share God’s love with the community and the world, and welcome all to join in the journey.” Please plan to attend to learn about the opportunities all of us will have to serve a role in carrying out the work of God’s church.

The Transition Team met November 7th & 14th to prepare for the November 19 forum and to begin work on the Connections focus area of the IIM. The purpose of this focus area is to examine how affiliations and connections with other organizations enable Calvary Hill to carry out its mission.

Upcoming Opportunities for the Power Pack Ministry
A Food Drive for Power Packs will be held November 19. Please bring individually-sized portions of macaroni and cheese, Chef Boyardee pasta, tuna salad kits, shelf-stable milk, 100% fruit juice, or diced fruit in 100% juice. We are especially in need of lunch/dinner entrees such as macaroni and cheese and Chef Boyardee in order to complete our next batch of Packs for Little Run Elementary.

Also, a few volunteers are needed to help assemble Power Packs immediately after the service on November 26. If you are able to help, please sign up on the bulletin board in the main hallway. Please contact Chris or Beth Ann Velo with questions. Thank you for your continued support of this ministry! 

DO YOU KNOW…
That there is a group of Busy Bakers at Calvary Hill that bakes and delivers treats to our local police and fire first responders? Scheduled on a monthly, rotating basis, each baker has a turn just twice per year. We currently could use one more participant. If this mission is of interest to you, please contact Carolyn Kramer at 703-644-1378.  


Poinsettia Orders
Christmas poinsettia orders end on Wednesday, November 22. The cost this year is $8 per plant. Order forms can be found inside your Sunday bulletin or on the welcome table.


Don’t Miss the Fun!  
You are cordially invited to join the Lunch Bunch on the 1st and 3rd Thursdays of each month. Programs are designed to stimulate interesting discussions and to explore new ideas. Unusual foods are often sampled as well, like ube cupcakes and the pan de muerto sweet bread shown in the photo of our Day of the Dead celebration.
On December 7 a film documentary is tentatively scheduled in honor of Pearl Harbor Day. Afterwards, we will share memories and old photos of loved ones who served in World War II.
The Annual Senior Christmas party will take place on December 14 (NOTE: there will be no meeting on the 3rd Thursday in December). In addition to a delicious holiday lunch (at no charge), tentative plans include a carol sing-along led by Trish Maranin. Following the meal, we’ll ask each other some of the 300 questions found in The Christmas Conversation Piece, a little book that offers surprising and amusing yuletide questions to ask family and friends during holiday gatherings. For example – Question # 278: What color do you think Santa’s hair was before it turned white?
Be sure to sign up for this event on the main hallway’s bulletin board. And let Kitty Shaw-Gardner or Ruth Muhlbauer know if you need a ride.


In the Community
Dec. 2, 2017 - 6 pm - Movie "WE ARE STRONGER"
  - tickets at www.strongermovie.com/schedule
  - This will be shown at National Museum of the Marine  
  Corps
  - Address: 18900 Jefferson Davis Hwy, Triangle, VA
  - Movie is faith-based and explores a veteran's battle with  
  PTSD

Dec. 5, 2017 - 11 am- 2 pm - NorthStar's 15 Anniversary Open House
  - Address: 7100 Columbia Pike, Annandale, VA 22003
  - Phone: (703) 941-6822
  - hors d'oeuvres will be served


Out of Office
Pastor Jerry will be on vacation from Nov. 16th –Nov. 25th.