Thursday, August 30, 2012

Evening Oasis Service

It has been an exciting first year as Associate Pastors at Trinity Presbyterian Church. When Pastor Benita and I were first called to Trinity, we were asked to be "cultural architects" of a new service. As we delved into the information from previous task forces dating as far back as 2005, we were able to come on board with the vision of offering a new evening service with the primary themes of authenticity over production, spirituality over institution, and embracing the benefits that new mediums of technology can provide. As we pass our one year mark, how wonderful it is to begin to see the foundations being laid for a new evening service to be offered beginning in late November on Monday nights from 6:30 PM - 8:00 PM.

The service will begin with a time of fellowship over coffee and tea in what is currently the Media Center in the Oasis area of the church. In fact, because this area is part of the heart of our worship, we'll probably refer to this service as "Oasis". Already we're working with an interior designer to see how best to change that space into a welcoming atmosphere that will be where we gather before and after worship, while at the same time keeping our valuable library collection intact and available. In addition to using this space and the life group breakout rooms for fellowship and prayer before and after the service, we hope to provide a live feed of the worship once its begun to a monitor in the Oasis area (as well as streaming it online) so that those who wish may remain in this fellowship area and still be connected to the service. After connecting with one another, catching up, maybe grabbing a cup of Haitian coffee, we'll transition into the time of worship by walking over to the chapel space. This space will have more involved and intimate seating in the front, and more relaxed seating, similar to the fellowship space, on the edges. Whereas Pastor Michael carries most of the teaching responsibilities for the Sunday morning services, this service will be led musically by Pastor Benita and most of the teaching moments will be led by Pastor Samuel. We also hope to be able to provide childcare for children through kindergarten for those with younger ones in their families.

A lot is coming together and again, we're excited, but in order for this service to be meaningful and authentic, we hope that those who feel led would contact us about helping form the heart of the service by serving as relational facilitators before and after the service, helping the body worship through gifts of music, sharing the load of setting up and breaking down the chapel space, preparing and serving a variety of coffees, helping the technological aspects of the service come together, and bringing your own thoughts and gifts to this expression of joy and thanks as we worship our great and loving God in response to seeing His kingdom come in our lives and in our communities. In the immediate future there is a great need for those gifted with painting and construction skills as we revamp the Oasis library area into the Oasis cafe area! There's so much more to share and to see as God works here through His people. Please continue to pray that this expression, Oasis, might be a well-spring of refreshment for all people.