Because we are a congregation focused on our ministry and mission, this week’s eNews message will highlight a change in our worship pattern one Sunday each month at Mt. Horeb for the upcoming year. Called “Unity Sunday,” the 3rd Sunday of each month from September through May will have the following schedule:
Gathering Time at 8:45
Education for All Ages at 9:00
Unity Worship at 10:00
Sunday Lunch 11:00 (following worship, free)
At it’s August meeting, Council approved a recommendation from our Worship Core Team to move forward with the idea of a Unity Sunday. This idea has been discussed in various ways over the years. With the addition of Pastor Joanna, with some input from the recent SHIFT initiative try “holy experimentation”, and with a sense for a need at Mt. Horeb to bring unity to our mission together … Unity Sunday is an attempt to celebrate our life together as a congregation. Our hope is for Mt. Horeb to use this time to grow together, and then, together grow in our ministry.
The missional purpose will be to bring focus to our Core Ministry through a year-long emphasis of unity as a congregation.
1. The Fellowship Time is intended for catching up with one another in the Fellowship Hall while enjoying coffee, juice and company.
2. The Learn time is intended for all ages. This would be a way to support our education program. If you have not been to Sunday School in years—or even if you’ve never been— give it a try.
3. At 10:00, Unity Worship will bring us all together with united voices and united hearts to worship as one Mt. Horeb. We would look to make the service leaner but no less reverent, faithful, prayerful, and Spirit-filled.
4. The 11:00 (following worship) meal provides an opportunity to gather around the table, enhance opportunities to meet and fellowship with one another, and bolster a sense of community that would spill into the other Sundays of the month. It could also be a time for brief Core Team or Sub+ministry planning meetings.
Some FAQ’s regarding this idea:
Why not have one Service every Sunday? Our space isn’t large enough for a sustained Unity Service. When you grow beyond 80% capacity, the atmosphere begins to be less comfortable. At our current worship numbers on a well-attended Sunday (240), we would be at 92% capacity (260).
What about “my” worship service (8:30/11:00)? This would be a compromise for everybody. With a new sense of fellowship and community, a goal is to provide a unified way to embrace our Worship and Learn Core Ministry (& other Core).
What happens after May? In addition to growing community, we want the Unity Worship Sunday to grow attendance – especially for the other Sunday worship services. Throughout the year, Worship and Council will evaluate the response to discern next best steps as we seek to be relevant to a changing community.
Because this Sunday will also begin on another special event – Revive Our Spirit – we are asking our members to make every effort to reserve the day to attend both morning worship and afternoon Revive Our Spirit. What better way to celebrate the presence of God in our life together!
Thank you for your support and for your prayers and participation as we work together to “experience and share God’s presence” at Mt. Horeb. I look forward to worshiping and eating and “reviving” and fellowshiping with you!