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The Preacher’s Post: Creating a Community in Christ
In high school, I had the opportunity to participate in an independent study course that entailed working with our school district technology coordinator. While studying with him, I learned how to maintain and repair computers, install network cabling and software, manage email and file storage systems, and got school credit for doing it! But it was learning that my teacher was just as interested in computer games as I was that proved to be almost as much of a blessing as the class. Along with me and a couple of other students, my teacher created gaming group that gathered weekly to play computer games on the school network together. While it was probably not entirely on the up-and-up for us to come in after hours and use school district resources to play games, we playfully reasoned that we were conducting “weekly network stress tests” and decided it was fine. (Besides, our teacher could’ve made a LOT more doing the same thing out in the private sector, so I suspect that the school administration looked the other way to help keep him happy.)
What started as three of us trying out something new grew into a group of students, former students, and other adults that could number upwards of a dozen people on some weeks. After high school, I continued to gather with them during the summers when I would come home from college. During those years I came to know a number of people that I would have probably never met otherwise. Those weekly gatherings fostered friendships that, in spite of our ruthless attempts to defeat each other in the virtual world of video games, drew us together in fellowship and care for one another. I was grateful to have had such a close-knit community then, and am grateful today for the example set by a fellow computer nerd who just happened to be one of my teachers.
Now if you find my story charming, but perhaps a bit difficult to relate to, then go crack open your Bibles and just start reading. The stories of Jesus and his disciples, of Paul and Peter and the early churches, and of so many other early Jesus-centered groups were more than just about being worshiping
bodies – they were about building up communities that dined and fellowshipped together; that looked out for each other and took care of one another. And that’s a reminder that we’re meant to be more than just a worshiping congregation, too. As time changes, the ways that we live out our fellowship and care will likely change, too. But regardless of how we do these things, they will always be a central part of who we are as church. So, let’s take advantage of this new program year (and our time of looking back on the past 100 years!) to explore new ways of being Christ’s community in fellowship and care. (And maybe worship, too!) The world needs us to be an example of community now perhaps as much as it ever has, and I’m excited to explore what God has in mind for us. I hope you are, too!
Yours in Fellowship and Care,
Christian Church of Bremerton is a diverse group of people seeking to
respond to the vision of God's purpose revealed through Jesus the
We believe this vision calls us to be an intentional community, which engages persons in Christian practices. These practices include the Lord's Supper, joyful worship, Bible Study, prayer, service, and inclusive hospitality. We anticipate being open to all people, discerning how we can respond to needs within and beyond our congregation. As a community we will listen to and bear one another's burdens, and work on behalf of justice for all God's people.
To embrace and manifest Christ-like relationships in our community, we desire to communicate Jesus' death on the cross and bear witness to His resurrection as a sign of hope in this world. We seek to realize this hope by finding ways to overcome the forces that degrade, enslave and oppress God's creation.
In this vision we seek to know, to discern, and to act on the Holy Spirit's guidance to become an expression of God's new creation through our personal gifts and resources. In our actions we strive "to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with [our] God." (Micah 6:8c)