Board of Directors News
“Don’t hesitate to be enthusiastic – be on fire in the Spir-it as you serve the Lord!” Romans 12:11
I am so thankful for this wonderful community of believ-ers. Every time I turn around there are people who step up to fill a need, say a prayer, or complete a project. This year’s board has done a great job and I want to thank them for making my job so much easier. The Ultreya committee has filled all the slots for 2015 and are well on their way to completing the calendar for 2016. We have firmed up dates through 2017 for our new facility at Meadowkirk Farms. We have also had some great help from the community in general. We have had volunteers step up to work on updating our skit trunk and to help provide projector equipment for our weekends. I want to thank Sleepy Hollow for hosting the July Ultreya for us at the last minute. I could go on and on with the endless work that is done behind the scenes for the good of NCA Emmaus.
As we all know, Emmaus is a pass it forward community and it takes many hands to do the work needed to help us to continue to grow and touch lives for Jesus. I have said many times that it is a joy to serve as your CLD. Being a member of the Emmaus Board is probably one of the most rewarding tasks that I have undertaken and I would highly recommend it to anyone. Yet each year, we struggle to find enough people willing to take on this task. I would like to encourage each of you to prayerfully con-sider putting your name on the ballot to serve as a member of the Board for 2016 – 2017. The only requirements are that you must have served on at least two teams and you must have a willing heart. The Board meets once a month and addresses the many needs of the community. They make sure that Ultreyas happen each month, pro-vide support for each weekend and are responsible for the facility contracts, watch over the finances of the community, and many other tasks as well.
You have all experienced a joy-filled weekend. Many of you have felt the love continue at Ultreyas and have experienced the amazing feeling of serving on a team. Why not take the next step and put your name in to serve on the board? It’s great to participate in Ultreya and go on weekends as a team member, but none of that will happen without the hard work that happens on the Board. So give it some thought, give it some prayer, and see if this might be a place for you to serve.
Summer makes the heart sing!! Please join in at August Ultreya and sing praise. The NCAE Praise Team will be leading music and pumped up to worship and fellowship. If you would like to be an active part, please contact us for more information regarding involvement and practice, or simply join in at Ultreya. We usually practice the Monday prior to the Ultreya at the host church, and again around 6pm the night of Ultreya.
Chrysalis musicians rocked the house in July and He is glorified!! Awesome music, Marty and Dan and the whole team!! C-90 musicians (sweet Billingsleys) will lead.
Thanks & blessings!!
Our 2015 Weekends!!
E-172 ~ Mar. 12-15 - Kathy Woodley
All weekends will be held at the Meadowkirk Retreat Center in Middleburg, Virginia
A recent trip enabled me to see several of the most sig-nificant sacred art works in history, DaVinci’s The Last Supper, and so many by Michelangelo, The Sistine Chapel, St. Peter’s Basilica, his statue of David and a beautiful painting, The Holy Family. Gazing upon these masterpieces reminded me that the nature of God and the Christian story are revealed to us in many different ways.
Creative works be they art or music often have a spiritual power that teaches us about people & moments in our faith story & conveys meaning without the spoken word. I found Michelangelo’s, Pieta, which sits inside St. Peter’s to be just such a work.
Pieta is an Italian word that means “pity”, & a pieta is a work of art that depicts Mary holding the lifeless body of her son, the Christ, brought down from the Cross. What is revealed to us in & thru this breathtaking sculp-ture? The Pieta was sculpted from a single slab of mar-ble. Look at the figures that emerge from the stone. A photograph does not do justice to this deeply moving sculpture. It is difficult to stand at the Pieta without shed-ding a tear for humanity.
On Pentecost in 1972, a man leapt across the railing, cried, “I am Jesus Christ”, and attacked the Pieta with a hammer. Landing twelve blows, he knocked off her left arm, broke off the tip of her nose, & damaged her cheek and eye.
He was not prosecuted, but he spent two years in a psy-chiatric hospital before he was released. There were de-bates about how to address the damage. Some thought they should leave it damaged as a visible sign of the vio-lence of the modern world. Others said, repair it, but leave visible scars of the assault. It was decided to try to erase any evidence of the attack. The restoration was painstakingly completed, but today there is evidence of the violence of this world; the Pieta is displayed in St. Peter’s behind bullet-proof glass.
There is another type of violence.
We know that Mary was at the crucifixion, and it is rea-sonable to believe she was there when Christ’s body was taken down from the cross. It is possible that she could have held her son’s body, but we have no scripture that says this. Scripture only tells us that Jesus was taken down from the cross & his body prepared for burial on the request of Joseph of Arimathea with the help of Nic-odemus.
Writing about this sculpture on my return, I found several articles that railed against the idea of a pieta, saying that since scripture does not say it happened, it did not hap-pen & could not have happened. One article called the Pieta a “graven image”; that it is “nothing short of idolatry, which is very strongly condemned by God.”
Really? Spend a moment looking at the Pieta. Can this connect us in some way with the suffering of our Lord, with the grief of humanity represented here by Mary, the mother of a son who has been killed; can look-ing at this sculpture help us connect to our own suffering and help us understand that God knows our suffering because God has experienced suffering too? Does this not deepen our faith?
Are U worshipping this sculpture? I doubt it. It’s just marble, albeit marble touched by a master.
The pieta has revealed to us a type of violence; a violence of such harshness that it seeks not to find points on which we can agree, but seeks only to divide, lifting up its own claim of righteousness by condemning what it perceives to be a threat. Violence does not have to be physical to cause injury and hurt.
If one can look at the Pieta & see only something to condemn, then this reveals more about the one who con-demns than about the one who shares in the suffering of God & humanity.
God uses many different instruments to reveal what is good and what may be not so good, what is beauty and what lacks beauty, what is compassionate and what lacks compassion. May our vision of that which is sacred in stone enhance our vision of that which is sacred through our faith.
Assistant Spiritual Director
It takes a village. You’ve heard this before many times – but I feel it is particularly true when we are referring to mentoring our children and youth. And it doesn’t just refer to a large number of people – it refers to what those people can offer by way of mentoring. Everybody in ‘the village’ has different God given skills – many of them without knowing they have the skills. Whether it is music, the ability to pray, the patience to do something over and over again until the child or youth gets it right – the list goes on.
As adults in the church it is our responsibility to help minister in some way to our youth. Interestingly though, there is no biblical model for youth ministry. So my inter-pretation of this is that we should use the biblical principles we already know and apply them to youth. Sure, there are some specific areas of ministry that focus on youth issues – relationships, sex, drugs, rock and roll etc. – and these shouldn’t be ignored – but too many youth ministries focus solely on those and omit the basic bibli-cal principles we expect our youth to adhere to when they get older (I prefer that term to ‘grow up’).
If we want to grow our youth as future leaders, we need to give them the opportunity to lead as youth. That’s one of the great things about Chrysalis. During the teaming process the adults on the team mentor the youth on leadership – culminating on the youth/young adults actu-ally running the weekend. The mentors are there ‘just in case’ but the weekend is handed off to the youth/young adults – and the model works. I have mentioned by name many ‘Chrysalis kids’ who have gone on to be leaders – and these are just the ones I know about. I see it in my own church where ‘Chrysalis kids’ have started their own bible study and invited other kids to attend. We had a youth led Sunday recently and it was a roaring success. We didn’t change the style of worship or try to make it ‘cute’ – we simply let the youth – with adult mentorship – organize and run the service. This is exactly what the Chrysalis model is all about – showing the love of God to our youth and grooming them to become future leaders.
Yes we address some of the youth specific issues on the weekend – but the program is grounded in biblical principles we all should be attempting to follow.
I’ve tasked you in the past with finding a youth at your church and offering to mentor them. I’m going to task you with something maybe a little easier to achieve in a shorter time period. Go to the Chrysalis website and navigate to the ‘Upcoming Weekends’ page. Here you will find a list of all of the team members for the 2 upcoming summer weekends. I urge you to choose one adult and one youth/young adult from each weekend. Pray – frequently – that God gives the adult the wisdom needed to mentor the youth. And pray – frequently – that the youth/young adult is able to empty themselves of themselves to let God in. Oh, and by the way – I’ll know if you have taken the challenge because you will need a logon id to get to that page – so if I don’t see any new requests for logon id’s I’ll know you haven’t accepted the challenge!! It’s not just God who’s watching you.
Fly with Christ
NCA Chrysalis Lay Director
I am the Community Palanca Cha. I need volunteers to make placemats for me. We need 270 decorated placemats for each team that goes to the Mountain.
I will have blank placemats at the Ultreyas each month. You can create your own design, either free hand, trace from a coloring book, use markers, glitter and glue to create your designs. You can either do them yourselves or get your Sunday School classes to do them. The pilgrims really like them when they come from the children. There are two kinds needed: the ones that are decorated with cute pictures and words, and ones that specifically say “DeColores”. It does not matter what the picture is, it only needs to say “DeColores” somewhere on the placemat. If you wish to make a set for a specific weekend that is great but you need to mark the envelope this is for E-# and I will make sure it goes on that weekend.
You can do placemats for Chrysalis they need the same decorated and instead of saying DeColores they say FLY WITH CHRIST. If you want to do them for Chrysalis you can get them from Terry Downer and return them to her or you can give them to me and I will make sure she gets them.
Or what about your cloth Palanca bags that you received on Friday. How many of you sew? You can go to your fabric store and pick up some material. Rainbow material works well, I guess because most people don’t want to use it as a dress. I will have the dimensions available for you if you’re interested at the Ultreya.
Do you remember your Joy Flag Parade? Joy flags are always needed. These can be made from paper or fabric, and can be as simple or intricate as you desire, as long as they say “Joy” somewhere on the flag. These should always be the pennant shape, too. You may also specify the joy flags for specific weekend also.
First stones are simple. Go outside, pick up a rock, and write “First” on it. Please write “F-I-R-S-T” and not “I-S-T on it. We have felt for the “I’m Lovable” flower pin that you received on Friday. Men get a pennant-shaped ribbon, and felt is available for both. Do you remember being showered with Warm Fuzzies on Sunday? If you love yarn, then this is the project for you. At the Ultreyas there will be the prayer wheel for you to sign up to pray and also, there will be a sheet passed that will have snacks for the weekend. You can sign at the Ultreyas. Food for the weekends needs to get to the Head Cha before Tuesday of the week that the team is going unless you are sponsoring someone and will be going to the mountain on Thursday.
Where do I get all of the material or instructions, you may ask. Well, you can pick up placemats, felt for flowers and banners, and yarn for warm fuzzes at the Ultreya each month. You can also pick up or return items at the Ultreya. There is usually a table near the church’s entrance where items are placed. Or you can find me and hand items to me.
If you’re not available to attend the Ultreya, you can contact me. My email address is LindaLSmith999@verizon.net and phone number is 703- 216-2469. And if you’re concerned about getting an item to me quickly, we can always keep in touch by phone and work out something. If you are willing to serve as Palanca Chairman for your church please fill out the information on the clipboard that I will have at each Ultreya in the front. Please list which items your group is interested in doing, so when I am running low on items I can contact the chairman.
If you are in a reunion group this is a good project that you could do. So, check with your group and see what items you all would love to do. If someone from your church has already signed up then you don’t need to. I am looking forward to working with you!
"If you would like to get placemats please call Linda Smith 703-216-2469 and she will meet you to get them to you"
Thank you and DeColores!
Linda L Smith
Revised Procedures for Ultreya Prayer Concerns
The Board of Directors recently addressed the topic of prayer concern procedures during Ultreyas. The Board was advised that prayer concerns at Ultreya, written out for the presiding Spiritual Director to read, in many cases contained sensitive and private information. As a result, the Board decided to revise the procedures and implemented their decision at the December Ultreya. The revised procedures ask that prayer concerns be written on a piece of paper (provided) and dropped into a box. At the appropriate time during the Ultreya, the box containing the prayer concerns will be brought to the presiding Spiritual Director who will lead the community in prayer.
If individuals feel that more information should be shared regarding a specific prayer concern, please submit that concern to the community through the Holynet after checking with the parties involved to obtain their consent. Prayer concerns for publication on the HolyNet should be sent via email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Board of Directors has set the Weekend Fees for 2015 as follows:
From the returning second-year class of Directors, one lay member is elected by the Board to serve as the Community Lay Director for a one year term.. This person then selects an Assistant Lay Director from the second-year class.
The second-year Spiritual Director serves as the Community Spiritual Director, with the first-year SD serving as the Assistant to the Spiritual Director