Photo by Aaron Burden on Unsplash
By Pastor George Cladis
"People just showed up and were always made welcome.
To stay less than an hour was an insult, and there was always a meal.”
- Womenfolks: Growing Up Down South, Shirley Abbott
Of course, some of you were with us through the summer, in-person. Pastor Ryan, who pre-dates me at MetroWest, tells me our summer attendances were larger than at any time in HRMW's history.
But for all of us, September tends to be a kind of new beginning, even more than January 1. The air crisps up, apple cider donuts and pumpkin spice lattes abound, schools open...a page is turned and a new chapter starts.
And that's very true at our church on Greendale Avenue.
Our fall youth intern, Jeremy Lee, is forming a Welcome Team -- please say yes to him when he asks you to come some future Sunday, to warmly greet those coming back, crossing our threshold, to be together and praise God, share a meal, engage with each other. That's where it starts, moving from the parking lot into the People of God, uplifted by a "Welcome to Church!"
Our welcomes to each other simply reflect that great and costly "Welcome!" created at the cross of Jesus.
And then there's food. Always the Food of the Eucharist, taken, blessed, broken, given -- to feed you and strengthen your weary spirit. And more! There's the nourishment of SoulFood -- in our Community Room, prepared by loving hands, children running around, adults sharing about their lives, leading to conversation about worship, the Message...can this God-stuff really be true?
In September, there's a re-created Kidsrock (starts 9/18), a pumped Middle and High School ministry, a new Fall Launch of ways to deepen your walk with God, enhanced ways to live out Jesus faith...so, I'll be brief now, because all that's packed into this newsletter is hardly brief, but chock full of the Life and Love and Light of the Jesus People at Highrock MetroWest.
Warmly greet your fellow in Christ. Break bread together. Share your thoughts. We are...People of God, flawed, shaken up, and tumbled by the forces of daily existence, yet resilient because of Jesus...because of each other.
Register Your Children Infant to 5th Grade for Kidsrock!!
Kidsrock officially kicks off September 18th at our 10:00 AM service! Please register your child/ren using this form so we can be prepared for them. We're super excited about the new program year!! Find out more here.
Important Changes to Middle and High School Ministries for 2022-23
Be sure and check out the changes in both Middle School and High School ministries for this program year. For example, High School Youth Group will meet weekly this year at Highrock MetroWest. And Middle School youth will have a Sunday morning program. Read all about these changes and more by clicking the links above.
MAJOR New Developments in Worship and Music at Highrock MetroWest!
We’re kicking off some exciting things for our Metrowest congregation in worship ministry! There are 2 BIG initiatives for this fall and the details and times for those are listed HERE. If you’ve been a part of our regularly scheduled worship team–welcome back! If it’s been a while, we hope that as your schedule allows, you might find some of the events add value to your own worship as well as give you an opportunity to serve our congregation and help lead us all to dive a little deeper into the presence of God as we gather together. If you are not part of the volunteer Worship Team, why not? We'd love to have you. Contact MetroWest Worship Director Jason Cross for more information.
Highrock's Fall Launch 2022!
Check out our freshly curated list of groups, gatherings, events, and courses designed to help you connect to God personally, God’s people, and God’s purposes.
This fall’s lineup offers a variety of topics to explore with others. Our hope is that you will find a community willing to ask questions with curiosity and engage with honesty, hospitality, humility, and solidarity. We believe we can learn from each other’s experiences and learn about ourselves and God when we gather in community with a shared commitment to grow. Learn more here.
More Than a Meal Sermon Series with After-Worship Discussion Group
We begin a new sermon series on September 11 called More Than A Meal. Meals matter - because often there’s so much more than a meal happening! And we see this throughout the story of God and God’s people. Regardless of whether the meal is extravagant or ordinary, what happens around these tables has a profound impact on how we understand God, ourselves, and our purpose in God’s world!
Every Sunday during this series (9/11 - 10/16) we will host SoulFood after worship with a meal from a different country or US region -- introduced by a person familiar with that area. And then, after SoulFood (around 11:30 or 11:40, we'll have a 45-minute discussion about the sermon hosted by a MetroWest pastor (sermon series study guide is here). We are not able to offer childcare during these discussions at this time, but we are looking for responsible childcare providers for future programs. Please refer those you may know to Pastor George.
Other Ways to Be Involved!
PRAYER REQUESTS AND PRAYER MEETINGS
Please send your prayer requests to our Prayer Team Leader Foluke Ajayi. The prayer team meets weekly by zoom on Wednesday evenings at 9 pm for 20 minutes to pray for the needs of the church and in-person at HighrockMetrowest on a monthly basis. Please consider praying with us. The next in-person prayer meeting at church is on Thursday, September 29 at 7 pm in the Prayer Room. During the week of the Thursday evening in-person prayer meeting, there is no Wednesday prayer session.
SEPT. 13, 7:45 PM -- The Christian Story
What is Christianity all about? We believe that the Christian faith, at its heart, is a grand story that illuminates all of life. This course explores that story — the Christian Story — as it unfolds in Scripture. In this class, you’ll be introduced to an understanding of how the Bible, as a diverse collection of books and writings, tells the story of God’s faithfulness, how it speaks to questions of belonging and solidarity, and how this story brings about transformation in our lives and in the world. Learn more here.
SEPT. 23 -- MomsRock! In-person at Highrock MetroWest. Repeats Every Friday 9:30 - 11 AM.
Whether you have a newborn or are ushering kids off to college, MomsRock is a great place to make connections, grow in your faith, and share the challenges and the celebrations of parenting. MetroWest's MomsRock is led by Sandi Norman, Priya Manasseh, and Linda Kilburn-Peterson.
Find out more here. Register to attend here:
SEPT. 25 -- Theology Lab. American Evangelicalism: Family Conversations
The American evangelical movement has deeply impacted both the church and American society. But how should we relate to it today? This year, the Theology Lab online discussion group will explore this question in order to better understand our unique place in Christianity. Each session will feature live conversations between pairs of guest speakers who are influential in contemporary evangelical discussions. This online small group meets over Zoom on Sundays evenings from 7:30-9:00 pm ET on the following dates: Fall: September 25th, October 23rd, and November 13th. Find out more HERE!
OCT. 2 -- Edible Theology at Highrock MetroWest: Bake & Pray!
This bread baking workshop invites participants in 5th grade and above to get their hands in the dough and connect with God through food! Coinciding with our sermon series More than a Meal, baker and writer Kendall Vanderslice will help facilitate teaching, kneading, and baking bread.
Everyone will leave with a loaf of bread ready to be baked!
Child care is provided for age 2 - Grade 4. The child care registration link below is child care for the Oct. 2 event only.
In Person at Highrock Arlington:
Saturday, October 1st at 2:00 pm
735 Mass Ave, Arlington
In Person at Highrock MetroWest:
Sunday, October 2nd at 11:30 am
754 Greendale Ave, Needham
Online with Highrock MetroWest:
Sunday, October 2nd at 11:30 am
Zoom (register to receive the link)
The cost for this 2-hour workshop is $15 for in-person or $5 for online. Proceeds will benefit Highrock’s More Than a Meal campaign to combat food insecurity.
Participants are asked to bring a 3-quart bowl (or larger) if they have one.
OCT. 22 -- Women's Fall Retreat: Forgiveness & Renewal.
Saturday, Oct. 22, 9:30 am - 3:30 pm at the home of Camile Humphries Lee, 11 Cushing St, Wellesley, MA.
Our Fall HRMW Women's retreat will take place on Saturday, October 22 - 9:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. . Spiritual Director and former RCC pastor Adele Calhoun will lead us in a study of forgiveness and renewal through three more chapters of her book, Invitations from God.
There is no need to have attended our winter retreat to derive full benefit from this fall retreat!
We have 20 spots. The cost of registration is $35 for women who already have the book, and $50 for first-timers, which includes a copy of the book. We look forward with joy to this time of togetherness.
Purchase your spot for the retreat, and a book if you need one, using this form. Registration question? Contact Katie Milway.
Resources for Growing Deeper!