Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Speaking Tour: Northeast Oklahoma District, September 23-30

We have been graciously invited to conduct a mini-tour of churches on the Northeast Oklahoma District from September 23-30!

A brief schedule of our speaking engagements is as follows:

Tulsa Central (9/23, AM)
Muskogee First (9/23, PM)
Wagoner/Coweta (9/24, PM)
Sand Springs (9/25, PM)
Miami (9/26, PM)
Okmulgee (9/27, PM)
Broken Arrow First (9/30, AM)
Tulsa Regency Park (9/30, PM).

Feel free if to send us an e-mail if you'd like more information (or directions)! :)

-Aaron & Brit

Word and Table Servcies: Liturgical Worship in the Wesleyan Tradition

One of our favorite things about our time in Oklahoma this semester has been the opportunity to attend Word and Table services on (most) Sunday mornings at OKC 1st Church of the Nazarene. The services are led by our good friend, Rev. Judy Cox, and emphasize the roles that liturgy and tradition have played in Wesleyan worship services since the church's very beginning.

Our first Sunday back was a few weeks ago; the following is a brief synopsis of the liturgical worship format and content that we've come to appreciate as a supplement to our "normal" worship services. Liturgy, Judy noted, celebrates (and demands) "the work of the people...as we worship with our bodies: speaking, standing, singing, smelling, thinking, listening, eating, and drinking."

The worship service incorporated a number of different liturgical elements, including responsive readings, hymns, and Scriptural texts. We were particularly inspired by Judy's sermon, however, as she highlighted the historical background of the American Holiness movement in general and the Church of the Nazarene in particular.

John Wesley, she pointed out, simply wished to renew and reform the Anglican church; in the same way, Phineas Bresee wished to renew and reform the Methodist church. "Remembering means reliving where we have come from, and what we have believed," Judy noted. "We (Midwesterners) are not necessarily all Bible Belt Baptists," she gently pointed out. "And if we want to discuss what our church really believes, we have to go back to the Articles of Faith that it was founded on." It sounds so simple when you put it that way! :)

After sharing communally in the Prayers of the People and Passing the Peace, we joined together in praying The Great Thanksgiving before celebrating Communion together. "because we are Wesleyans, we practice an open table," Judy reminded us. "If you know that you need Jesus, you are welcome here."


Saturday, September 15, 2012

9/16: OKC 1st Church of the Nazarene

Hey all!

This Sunday (tomorrow) we will be speaking in the 10:30 AM worship service at Oklahoma City First Church of the Nazarene.

If you'd like to come here about what God is doing in European coffeehouse ministry...or you just feel like cheering us on...feel free to come on out!

Aaron & Brit

Sunday, September 2, 2012

In the United States, for now...

Well folks, that title says it all.

After 2+ years as volunteer missionaries in Poland...plus another whirlwind month of speaking and working in churches and coffeehouse ministries in the UK...we are finally back home in the United States.

For now. :)

We will spend the next 4 months working, teaching. speaking in churches, fund-raising, and generally preparing for our next multi-year volunteer missions assignment: helping with coffeehouse ministry projects in Manchester and London, UK.

This is fun, and tiring, and exciting, and scary...all at the same time. :)

Please continue to pray for us as we seek God's will for us during this short time back in the States. We are trusting him to provide adequate energy, transportation, and employment while we're home, as well the funds we'll need for our next volunteer assignment. He's never failed us yet!

We'll have more details for you soon...as always, thanks so much for your prayers and support. We could NEVER have made it this far without them! We love you!! :)

Aaron & Brit