Look What’s Happening in January:                       


Sunday, January 6, Baby Dedication                                                       Sunday, January 13, General Board meeting following Worship. Tuesday, January 15, Men's Breakfast at 7:30 am.                                  Saturday, January 19, Elder’s Meeting & Potluck Dinner at 5:00 pm.       Sunday, January 20, Congregational Meeting—2019 budget approval.   Friday, January 25, Friendship House Meal.  Volunteer today.                 Wednesday, January 31, Gal’s Night Out at 6:00 pm.


Special Dates

• New Year’s Day, January 1, 2019
• Epiphany, January 6, 2019
• Baptism of the Lord, January 13, 2019
• Week of Prayer for Christian Unity, January 18-25, 2019
• Martin Luther King Jr. Day, January 21, 2019

MVFCC Volunteer Opportunities:

1. The Friendship House needs you the last Friday of every month. Sign up at church this Sunday.

2. Neighbors in Need Food Bank is looking for donations of canned and dry foods. Place in the bins provided this Sunday.

3.  Our Common Table requests financial donations for growing their congregation.

4. Family Promise: We partner with Salem Lutheran Church on a rotating basis to provide food, shelter and support for families who are struggling to find affordable housing and employment opportunities.

​       Mount Vernon First Christian Church 

Disciples of Christ 

Enter In: 

Tired of making small talk at church about the weather or sports? Then follow Edward Welch’s advice to “enter in” to the lives of your fellow worshipers.  A churchgoer once asked Welch, author of Caring for One Another (Crossway), two simple yet profound questions: “What was the best thing about your week, and what was the worst thing about your week?” About a month later, when some issues were weighing heavily on Welch’s heart, he wondered who’d be willing to pray for him. Immediately, the person who’d asked him those two questions came to mind.
When worshipers are willing to enjoy one another’s blessings and be burdened by one another’s difficulties, Welch says, the body of Christ gets built up.

Our Denomination

As members of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), we believe our only creed is Christ. We shouldn't burden our lives with confusing rules of fellowship. There is no test of membership beyond faith in God's love and the Christ we have in Jesus, who leads us to reconcilliation with God and each other. Our emphasis is placed on living in ways that confirm our beliefs and understanding. At our best, we carry out a ministry that makes a difference in the world and reflects the good news of God's grace extended to all people.

Visit us at:

900 Skagit Street

Mount Vernon, WA 98274

Call us at:

360.336.2737

Email us at:

 disciples@mvfcc.comcastbiz.net


Schedule of  Weekly Events
Sunday Class - 9:30 am

Sunday Worship Service - 10:30 am
Sunday Fellowship Time - 11:30 am






Community Outreach
Jesus calls us to service. In answering his call, we support a number of community service organizations and projects. Among these are the Friendship House, Skagit County Community Action Agency, Domestic Violence Women's Shelter, Everett's Common Ground and Common Table, Family Promise, Neighbor's in Need, Samaritan's Purse Shoe-box Project, and Lincoln Elementary School.

Remember: 
Everyday is not a good day, but there is good in every day.

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Partnering with Our Common Table and Our Common Ground: 
Our Common Table is a new Christian Community seeking to cultivate spaces of welcome for all people where we can explore and practice life in the way of Jesus together, seek holistic justice, and love and celebrate our neighbors and neighborhood.

Donate to Our Common Ground:
Here is a current list of needed items at Our Common Ground:
Socks (new crew socks are preferred)
Gift Cards to grocery stores and restaurants in Everett
Coffee (preferably ground)
Snacks (protein rich and non-perishable are best)
Plastic Tarps
Razors and Shaving Cream
Toothbrushes and Toothpaste
Bottled Water
Blankets

Foot Powder

Elder Message: 
Those of you who were at MVFCC in January 2004, may remember the daily updates I emailed when we stopped in the evenings on our long trek from Tennessee to Washington. Those of you who were part of our MVFCC congregation in 2011 may recall the messages I sent during that sabbatical, though I wasn’t as faithful sending them that time. This last sabbatical I was really lax. In my defense, we were totally distracted by enjoying our time in Austin with our “kids.” It was such a blessing and a joy having the extended time with them. Our evenings were full of together time – sometimes watching Ainsley play softball or practice basketball and, at times, watching our various teams play on TV. We ate out and we cooked together. We laughed and we shook our heads in disbelief. We attended programs at Oak Hill Elementary School and watched with pride as Ainsley sang and recited her lines with great aplomb and cheered loudly as her fast-pitch softball team won their first tournament! In our last few days there, we celebrated Ainsley’s 10th birthday and watched the last softball tournament of the season. Thank you for the time to be with and to be family.

While looking back over our time in Austin, I noticed an internal wrinkle of something I haven’t felt in a while when considering what is happening in this world. Hope. The time spent in the company of beautiful, smart, fit, dedicated, aware children nudged awake a hope for our future. I saw in them all we need to come through this time of anger, fear and hate. I saw in them acceptance of differences and differences of opinion. I saw in them the grace of God. I saw in them the hope all shall be well, all shall be well, all manner of things shall be well.
Lela

Kingfisher faith
In a video on his publisher’s website, Eugene Peterson tells of watching a kingfisher repeatedly dive for fish in a lake. Peterson counted 37 dives before the kingfisher caught its supper! “And he’s the king fisher!” Peterson chuckles. From that bird-watching episode, he gleaned a ministry lesson: It may take a long time and many attempts — maybe dozens! — before something works out.
God calls us to live out his love faithfully, even when we don’t seem to be accomplishing anything. Maybe we extend 36 invitations to worship, work 36 monthly shifts at a food bank or utter 36 prayers without seeing results. “What’s the point?” we wonder. But the kingfisher urges us on: “Maybe number 37 is the charm!”
In the words of St. Paul (and mixing fishing and farming metaphors): “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up” (Galatians 6:9, NIV).

Reading resolutions
Every January, many Christians resolve to read the entire Bible in one year. That’s a worthy goal, but God doesn’t require us to read a certain number of verses or chapters per day. Instead, he tells us to simply be in his Word — and thus be with him — so he can grow our faith, light our path and assure us of his love and forgiveness. God’s Word is a precious gift, but we need to “unwrap” it!
F.B. Meyer offers this helpful advice for a new year of discovering (and rediscovering!) Scripture: “Read the Bible, not as a newspaper, but as a home letter. If a cluster of heavenly fruit hangs within reach, gather it. If a promise lies upon the page as a blank check, cash it. If a prayer is recorded, appropriate it and launch it as a feathered arrow from the bow of your desire. If an example of holiness gleams before you, ask God to do as much for you. If the truth is revealed … entreat that its brilliance may ever irradiate … your life.”

Spirit Sightings- 2019 January
I sat talking with my brother-in-law  last week, “I don’t really attend church anymore,” he said. “It just doesn’t seem relevant to my life. I mean I believe in Jesus and all. But why keep rehearsing the same stories over and over? Does it really change anything? I’m left with the question, ‘So what?’ There’s a person who never got to ask the what’s in it for me question. And a church that never got to answer it. Maybe we should be asking, What would you like to get out of your participation in this church?” It’s a powerful question that helps people connect with their dearest concerns and their long-lost dreams. All too often we simply tell them what we the church are prepared to offer. Or what we think they should be looking for. Or perhaps we don’t even explain that. But when people can connect with what truly matters to them, and see a way to fulfill that through the church, then they will be eager partners in their own spiritual formation. They will be eager disciples of Jesus Christ. But we must be willing to have them ask us the “What’s in it for me?” question. And to wrestle honestly with the answers. The more we can deal with people as they are, and not as we think they should be, the better we’ll be able to do at it. Today, people do ask the question, “What’s in it for me?” Not a bad question for us to wrestle with. It assumes they have personal agency as well as God-given dreams, hopes and questions. And it assumes we truly have something to offer.
(Taken from an article by Rebekah Simon-Peter)

Frances Ridley Havergal, a 19th Century Hymnwriter perhaps best known for her hymn, “Take My Life and Let it Be,” also wrote a hymn to celebrate the dawning of the new year. This was in 1873, but the words still resonate for me each year as we stand on the threshold of new possibilities. Stanza 1 sings: “Another year is dawning, O Father let it be, in working or in waiting, another year with Thee. Another year of progress, another year of praise, another year of proving Thy presence all the days.”

One of my favorite stories about this hymn writer who died at the young age of 42 is how she would write each stanza. As she reached the end of one line, she would pause and offer a prayer up to God. “What’s next?” And then she would continue writing. As we move into 2019, I pray that we will continue to ask, “What’s next?,” as God continues to write music in our lives. I pray we will continue to ask, “What’s next?” as we consider the ways we are called to serve. I pray we will continue to ask, “What’s next?” as we seek to be God’s music in the world.

Happy New Year - May this be a year both of progress towards God’s vision of Shalom, and praise for the ways Spirit is at work.          

  Rev.  Sandy Messick