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Valley Church News

January 31, 2013

     "But we are not of those who shrink back and are destroyed, but of those who believe and are saved."
     ~ Hebrews 10:39
      This Sunday we will take a break from our series from the gospel of Mark. I need to deliver an assigned-text sermon as part of my classical examination, so I will be preaching "Enduring with Confidence in Jesus" on Hebrews 10:32-39. To prepare for our service of worship this Sunday, I invite you to read Hebrews 10:32-39 at some point this week.
     On February 10, the final week of Epiphany, we will get back to Mark. I will be preaching "The First Disciples Hear the Call of the Kingdom" on Mark 1.16-20.

Ash Wednesday Service:

     On February 13 we will be holding our annual Ash Wednesday service at 7:00 PM. Ash Wednesday marks the beginning of the season of Lent, the season in which we prepare in heart and mind for Jesus' suffering, death, and resurrection. Lent is a time of confession and repentance, a time of renewed contemplation of the cost of Jesus' sacrifice and of our discipleship. This Ash Wednesday service will give us opportunity to meditate on our human frailty and mortality, our sinfulness, and our need for Jesus' sacrifice. This service will also give us time to think about specific sins of which we need to repent in Lent and all of life. And we will celebrate Jesus' victory over sin and death. The service will marked by quiet reflection and meditation, along with scripture reading, songs, and the imposition of ashes. I hope you will join us!

Upcoming Lenten Series and Study:

    I would like to, again, encourage all of the adults in the church to seriously consider taking part in a DVD study led by N.T. (Tom) Wright based on his book Surprised by Hope: Rethinking Heaven, the Resurrection, and the Mission of the Church during Lent this year. We will be offering the study on Sunday morning at 9:15 during the adult education time and at other times during the week as well.
     In addition, each week I will be preaching on a Bible text that comes up in the study session for that week.
     I encourage regularly meeting small groups to do this study together. For those of you who are not in a small group, there will be a sign-up sheet at the church on Sunday if you would be interested in joining a mid-week group for this study during Lent.

Abuse Prevention:

     This week we are having a meeting to review the church's abuse prevention policy with those who work with the children and youth at Valley Church (see the side column for details on the meeting). This policy is designed to protect the children and youth of Valley Church. We take seriously the call to love and raise up the covenant children who God has entrusted to our care, and we want to make sure that Valley Church remains a place where every child will be and feel safe, and where every child knows that they can trust the adults to be their advocates if they need to talk about something that is happening to them outside of this church. Knowing and following the abuse prevention policy, and holding others accountable to follow it also ensures parents that they can entrust their children to the care of the nursery and Sunday school teachers. Following the policy also ensures that every adult is above reproach and will be protected in the unlikely event that someone were to bring a false accusation of abuse.
     The stories in the news of abuse, lack of correct reporting, and systems and organizations covering over abuse are too frequent; together, we want to do everything in our power to make sure that the news about kids that comes out of Valley Church is good news!
Sunday Service Times:
Sunday School: 9:15 a.m.
Worship: 10:30 a.m.


In the Life of Valley Church:

We pray for Marcus, Florence, Natalie, and Daniela as they mourn the passing of Marcus' father.

We wish the best to those who have gone to Florida already: Charlie and Jan, and Frank and Barb. We pray for safe travels for George and Ann who leave on Monday.

Upcoming events and opportunities:

     Tonight, January 31, we will have our Abuse Prevention Policy meeting at 7:30. All adults who work with the children and/or youth need to be there for this meeting or for the make-up meeting following the service this Sunday (Feb. 3). The meeting will last one hour and will be led by Leslie Vermaat. If you're planning on being at the Sunday meeting, please contact Leslie so that she can bring you a snack to tide you over until lunch!

     This Sunday at 9:15: adult education continues with a DVD series by pastor Tim Kellor called The Reason for God: Conversations on Faith and Life. You can see the DVD study trailer here. Please feel free to join in even if you haven't been there for the past few sessions.

     Feb. 1 & 2: Richard Mouw, president of Fuller Theological Seminary and former Calvin College professor, will give public lectures at the Chesterton House at Cornell University. The Friday evening lecture is also available to watch via a live stream from the Chesterton House website for those unable to drive up to Cornell.

     Remember to be filling up those baby bottles with coins, bills, and/or checks for Life Choices Center. If you didn't pick up a bottle, there will be more available by the coffee on Sunday morning. You can learn more about this organization here.

Recommended Reading:


Philip Yancey's The Jesus I Never Knew is a wonderful companion to the beginning of our journey through the book of Mark, and a wonderful look at the life of Jesus. In this book, Yancey peels off layers of unhelpful perspectives that many Christians have adopted over the centuries and helps us see our Savior with fresh eyes, much the way the gospel writers might have wanted us to see him.
Church Telephone: (607) 648-8224
 Pastor Kurt's email:
Church email:
Church website:

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Valley Church
1452 River Road
Binghamton, New York 13901

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