LINK TO VIDEO FROM ONLINE WORSHIP SERVICE FROM 5/24/20

Click on this YouTube video to see our live worship service from the seventh Sunday of the Easter Season, May 24, 2020. With this service we continue our Easter Season worship series called “Heart of the Matter,” from Worship Design Studio.

PASTOR JASON’S JOURNAL 5-21-20

March 8 was the last time we were all  together for worship in our building. For over two months we’ve been worshiping from home, all gathered around a computer, tv screen, or phone. I don’t think any of us had any idea, on March 8, of the changes we’d experience. I remember there being a lot of talk in the news about COVID-19, but no real changes had taken place yet. I remember having the thought, “Should I be shaking hands?,” but I didn’t think anything was serious enough to act upon. Now, that time seems almost quaint with all the changes since then. The following week, Ball State went to online-only learning, and it wasn’t long after that when Muncie schools went to online learning, too. We went to online worship for March 15, and, since then, we haven’t been back together in one room, but we’ve been worshiping together from our homes while we’re doing our online worship.

As I’ve listened and discussed with leaders from other churches, an idea has probably been at the center of our conversation: “How do we get back to March 8?” How do we get back to that March 8 reality, where we’re all together, worshiping as normal in our building? That’s been the focus of so much thought among people who lead churches. I understand that desire; our being physically together and worshiping in our building has been the focus of church life, and it’s right and normal to want to have that back.

I wonder, though, if the question before us shouldn’t be “How do we go back?,” but “How is God leading us forward?” It’s helpful for me to know God’s people have gone through things like this before. When the people were brought out of slavery in the Exodus, once they left the familiarity of life in Egypt, they started wishing they could go back to their past life in Egypt. During the Babylonian exile, the people were taken away from their homes and the worship life of the temple in Jerusalem. They had to remake their faith and worship in light of their living in Babylon. That time of exile became one of the most vibrant periods of faith for ancient Israel. What is maybe my favorite section of scripture, Isaiah 40-66, comes out of that time where they had to renew their faith in their new situation. Their loss of their old worship life led to a beautiful renewal of their faith in God!

I believe this is a time of bad news and good news. The bad news is the challenges presented to us by COVID-19 will be with us for a while. And even while we are trying to figure out how to safely and faithfully return to worship in our building, worship won’t look like March 8. That’s the bad news. Here is the good news: God is still with us, and God isn’t through with our world. God’s people have been through things like this before, where they’d had to renew their faith under new and challenging circumstances. And so the question for us is not how we can turn the clock back to March 8, but how is God leading us in faithfulness, creativity, and renewal in this new season we’re in? This could be a period where we look back and see it as a powerful experience of renewed faith. It’s so tempting to look back, like the Israelites looking back to their old life of slavery in Egypt. Maybe, though, God isn’t leading us to look back, but to look forward with boldness and faith.

Grace & peace,

Jason Jones

 

2020-2021 JONES SCHOLARSHIP RECIPIENTS

Congratulations to the Jones Scholarship recipients for the 2020-2021 school year!

New Recipient:

Adam Glaze– University of Southern Indiana

Renewals:

Josh Clary– Ball State

Andrew Glaze– Taylor University

Victoria Long– Ball State University

Khamasi Muhiga– Ball State University

Brynmar Rees– Butler University

Kara Tucker– Taylor University

 

MISSIONS & BENEVOLENCE 5-21-20

DISBURSEMENT

$1,000 to Winnie’s Kids

 

“WINNIE’S KIDS” COLLECTION EXTENDED

We have extended the deadline for donations to help ‘Winnie’s Kids’ in Kenya until Sunday, June 7. Please mark all contributions ‘Winnie’s Kids,’ and mail it to the church office (if writing a check, it would greatly help our bookkeeper if you write a separate check from your regular offering). Winnie is hoping to make her trip to Kenya this summer, though may need to adjust her plans depending on travel restrictions that may be in place. Regardless of the timing of her trip, there are still great needs in Kenya, so please prayerfully consider how you can help ‘Winnie’s Kids.’

 

LINK TO VIDEO FROM ONLINE WORSHIP SERVICE FROM 5-17-20

Click on this YouTube video to see our live worship service from the sixth Sunday of the Easter Season, May 17, 2020. With this service we continue our Easter Season worship series called “Heart of the Matter,” from Worship Design Studio.

Please forgive the audio quality. Our normal online platform was not working, and we had to find a quick replacement. We hope to be back to normal for the next Sunday.

COMMUNITY GARDEN PREPARATION 2020

Our thanks to our garden folks helping to prepare the garden for this summer’s produce. Thank you to Bill for bringing his tractor, and for Jay, Glen, and Ann for laying down the pavers for the cross. Looking forward to being able to share our produce with our neighborhood and friends.

 

picture of community garden before planting

The community garden at Hazelwood is ready to be planted.

Tilling the community garden

Bill R tilling the community garden to prep for planting.

LINK TO VIDEO FROM ONLINE WORSHIP SERVICE FROM MAY 10, 2020

Click on this YouTube video to see our live worship service from the fifth Sunday of the Easter Season, May 10, 2020. With this service we continue our Easter Season worship series called “Heart of the Matter,” from Worship Design Studio.

YOUTH NEWS 5-07-20

In response to the social distancing protocols currently in place and anticipation that there could be some restriction on activity stretching into early summer, we have tentatively rescheduled summer camps to the month of July with the hope that we will then be free to offer our regular camping program.

Please know the well-being of our campers and staff is of paramount importance. We are working to ensure we are in compliance with the latest guidance from the CDC on cleaning and hygiene, plus will rely on the information and all the recommendations being put forward regarding ways to be safe and responsible in the summer months ahead. We are continuing to monitor and review all new developments and information put forth by our local, state and federal government officials and health professionals.

(Revised April 15, 2020)

GENEVA

July 6-9 – You and Me (4 days) (age 5+ and an adult)

July 6-11 – Traditional Middle School (completed gr. 6-8)

July 6-11 – Traditional High School (completed gr. 9-12)

July 6-11 – C.R.O.S.S. (completed gr. 6-8 and 9-12)

July 20-22 – You and Me (3 days)  (age 5+ and an adult)

July 20-22 – New Beginnings (3 days) (completed gr. 1-3)

July 13-18 – Explorer (completed gr. 4-5)

July 13-18 – M.A.D. (completed gr. 6-8 and 9-12)

BEDFORD

Jun 29-Jul 4 – High School (completed gr. 9-12)

July 6-11 – Explorer (completed gr. 4-5)

July 13-18 – Middle School (completed gr. 6-8)

July 20-22 – New Beginnings (3 days) (completed gr. 1-3)

CAMP FEES:

6-Day Camps: $375 /  4-Day Camps: $265 /  3-Day Camps: $205

 

PASTOR JASON’S JOURNAL 5-07-20

When the quarantine for COVID-19 began, my thought was, “Well, we’ll do this for a few weeks, and then everything will go back to normal.” My thought was this would be a short pause on normal activity before business as usual resumed. Now, as our state is in a process of reopening things, I realize my thoughts were naive. I followed the governor’s plan for reopening and saw this is a complex problem, with many steps leading to an unsure future. Even as things begin to reopen, the challenges of the coronavirus are still present and will be with us for some time.

As we think about resuming worship in our building on Sunday, I realize there are many challenges to us all being back in one room. Even as the governor gave permission for churches to resume activity, it came with many precautions. He also encouraged churches to continue virtual services if possible, and he asked church leaders to do their best to keep their people safe. As I read it, the opening wasn’t a direction for all churches to immediately come back together, but a permission to gradually and safely begin a process of coming back together.

For Hazelwood, I believe the best decision is to not have Sunday morning worship in our building through the month of May. The Indiana Region of Disciples of Christ is also encouraging its churches to not hold worship in their buildings during May. I think this is the right choice for a few reasons. First, the governor’s guidelines for resuming worship said that those 65 and older, as well as those with preexisting medical conditions, should not attend worship services. This would mean we would have to tell at least half of our congregation not to attend worship. Second, the precautions we would need to observe in doing live worship (everyone wearing a mask, no communion or singing, no handing out of bulletins, sanitizer stations, rows spaced at least six feet apart, etc.) would make worshiping together challenging and also a very diminished experience. Third, I believe we are doing a good job with our online worship, and it presents a viable temporary alternative.

So, at least for the month of May, we can plan on not holding services in our church building but continuing with our online worship experience. I realize this is difficult because we miss one another, and the thought of being back together is very appealing. I’d rather us do it safely and cautiously rather than make a rushed and unsafe decision. In the meantime, we have many ways to connect, whether it’s our online experiences, phone calls, text messages, or emails. Let’s keep connecting! I’d love to hear from you, so let me know how you are doing. And when the time is right, we’ll all be back together in our building.

Grace & peace,

Jason Jones

 

PRESCHOOL NEWS 5-07-20

This week, as we celebrate Teacher Appreciation Week, it will look much different than in years past, with only virtual hugs, smiles, or even a Zoom meeting from our precious students. If anyone would have ever told me we would be celebrating this week like this or be ending our preschool year in this way I would have thought you were a little crazy! However, God has a plan for us all, doesn’t he?

During this time, I have to give a shout-out to my amazing teaching staff. They became virtual teachers, story tellers, science gurus, and art instructors. They attended Zoom meetings/trainings and much more, all from their homes. Homes where they are also trying to figure out how to keep their own families safe, be their own child’s teacher, make meals, keep house, and all the other important things that mothers do. They have stepped up to the plate to provide an excellent educational experience for the Hazelwood students we serve. These are some of the individuals I call heroes!!

Thank you, teachers, for providing a kind word, a virtual smile, a letter to your students, fun and engaging lessons, and all the other things you have continued to do during this unprecedented time! We could not do it without you!

Below, I have provided each teacher’s email. Please take a moment to send them a little thank you today to show we care about what they are doing. You can put “Teacher Appreciation” in the subject line so they will know it is someone from Hazelwood.

Thank you for taking time out of your day to think about them.

Happy Teacher Appreciation Week!”

~Angie Lopez