March/April Issue 2017

What Does the Bible Say About Foreigners and Refugees?

 

In recent weeks, the media has been filled with news about immigration policy, foreigners and refugees. What does the Bible say about immigration, foreigners and refugees? Of course the Bible does not directly address 2017 immigration policy, but there are many passages about foreigners and refugees in biblical times. Here is a very brief overview.

 

In the Old Testament, the Hebrew word for foreigner is ger, which is translated as “stranger” or “alien.” There are repeated commands to treat the ger with justice and mercy (Exodus 22:1, 23:9, Deuteronomy 24:17, 27:19, Jeremiah 7:6, 22:3, Zechariah 7:10). Most notable is Leviticus 19:33-34, “When an alien resides with you in your land, you shall not oppress the alien. The alien who resides with you shall be to you as the citizen among you; you shall love the alien as yourself, for you were aliens in the land of Egypt.” (NRSV)

 

In the New Testament, the Greek word for foreigner is xenos, usually translated as “stranger.” (Xenos is the root of our English word, xenophobia -- fear or hatred of foreigners.) Matthew uses xenos in Jesus’ Parable of the Sheep and Goats (Matthew 25:31-46). At the Last Judgment, the Son of Man will separate the sheep (righteous) from the goats (unrighteous) according to their treatment of “the least of these” -- including “the stranger.” The righteous “welcome the stranger,” while the unrighteous “do not welcome the stranger” (verses 35, 38, 43-44)

 

What about refugees, people who are forced to flee their homeland? Most major figures in the Bible were refugees at one time or another. Abraham and Sarah fled to Egypt to escape famine (Genesis 12:10). Jacob fled to Syria to escape his brother Esau (Genesis 27:43). Moses fled to Midian to escape Pharaoh (Exodus 3:15). David fled to Philistia to escape King Saul (1 Samuel 27:1). Elijah fled to Judah and Horeb to escape Queen Jezebel (1Kings 19:3). And Mary and Joseph fled to Egypt with the child Jesus to escape the evil King Herod (Matthew 2:13-15).

 

Christians have often had to flee persecution. John Smyth (whom many regard as the father of the Baptists) fled from England to Holland in 1608. The Brethren fled from Germany to America in the early 1700s. Our friends from Karen Community Church are all refugees. They fled war and persecution in Burma for refugee camps in Thailand. From Thailand, they immigrated to the US. The Karen bless us with their presence each July to celebrate Judson Day.

 

Christians have often assisted refugees, including refugees from other religious faiths. Church World Service and World Relief (of the National Association of Evangelicals) are two of the many Christian groups that continue to help refugees from around the world.

 

Within WBBC there are different opinions on immigration issues. But political diversity within our congregation is a sign of strength, not weakness. I am wary of those who declare a particular position to be “the Christian position.” At the same time, I encourage everyone to look at these issues through the lens of Christian faith. In every area of life, our standard is Jesus Christ.

 

Pastor David

 

 

 

March

  • Pastor Matt Canlis Preaching on March 5, 2017
  • Pastor David Morrow attending Brethren spring event in Lacey
  • Commission Meeting
  • Receive requests for planned gift interest
  • Staff Relations
  • Pictorial directory picture complete
  • Purchases of a new digital sound board
  • Celebrating Coming of Spring
  • Return to daylight savings time on March 12, 2017

 

April

  • Staff Relations
  • Commission Meeting
  • Celebrating Easter and Love Feast

 

Moderator Gary Shaw

 

 

 

Soup & Pie Lunch!

 

The Hospitality Commission is planning a Soup & Pie Lunch on Sunday, April 2, after worship in the narthex. Please check your bulletin in the coming weeks for more information about this event.

 

 

 

Church Pictorial Directory

 

The Church Pictorial Directory has been a success thanks to all for having your picture taken.

 

Thanks to Rudy and Shirley Mueller for initiating, taking photos, and helping with organization of the directory.

 

Thanks to Trinity Church for sharing their directory ideas.

 

A Special thanks to Betty for her time, expertise, putting the directory together and making us all look awesome.

 

Moderator Gary Shaw

 

 

 

Attention Deacons:

 

Deacon Meetings:

NO meeting in March

Tuesday, April 4 at 6:30pm

 

 

 

Remember in Prayer

 

Our Shut-ins:

  • Rose Delabarre
  • Audrey Salmon
  • Carolyn Storme

 

 

March Birthdays

  • 10th       Adam Shockey
  •             Jesse Graybill

 

April Birthdays

  • 3rd         Judi Delabarre
  • 13th       Ernie Holland
  • 18th       Gary Shaw
  • 22nd       Merry Kay Shaw
  •               Rachel Davis

  • 26th       Linda Vickery
    •   Leanne Ford

 

 

March ANNIVERSARIES

  • 23rd       Bob & Audrey Salmon

 

April ANNIVERSARIES

  • 24th       Jay & Susan Stockwell

 

 

 

Holy Week 2017

 

Although I have been preaching a sermon series on Holy Week since the beginning of the year, the actual Holy Week does not occur until the second full week of April. We do not yet have the exact times for all the special Holy Week events, but here are the dates and places:

 

  • April 13 – Love Feast, 6:00 pm at Wenatchee Brethren Baptist
  • April 14 – Trinity Church Good Friday Service
  • April 16 – Easter Sunrise Service at Rocky Reach Dam
  • April 16 – Easter breakfast at Sunnyslope Church
  • April 16-- Easter worship…He is risen!

 

The Love Feast, Sunrise Service, and Easter breakfast are held jointly with Sunnyslope Church.

 

 

 

America for Christ Offering

 

Every year we collect the America for Christ Offering. This offering goes to the American Baptist Home Mission Societies which supports American Baptist mission work in the U.S. and Puerto Rico. This year we will collect the offering on Sunday, March 19.

 

The theme for America for Christ (AFC) 2017 is Cultivating Leaders, Equipping Disciples, and Healing Communities. Watch for bulletin inserts which describe some of the projects supported by your AFC offering. Wenatchee Brethren Baptist is associated with the American Baptist Church and the Church of the Brethren. In the fall, we will collect the Mission Offering for the Church of the Brethren.

 

 

 

Upcoming Events

 

You are invited to a free screening of the short documentary, Godspeed, February 26, 7:00pm at Liberty Cinema in Wenatchee. Godspeed traces the journey of Trinity Pastor Matt Canlis from the US to Scotland and back again.

 

Pastor Matt and others reflect on parish ministry and living life Godspeed - slowing down enough to know and be known. For more information, see the posters in the narthex and church entrance.

 

The Pacific Northwest District Church of the Brethren Spring Event will be March 3-5 in Lacy. This year's theme is "Stories of Hope." There will be stories, singing, worship, workshops and input from Tara Hornbacker from Bethany Seminary. For more information, pick up a green flyer on the table in the narthex or speak with Pastor David.

 

The District’s Auction for the Brethren Disaster Service will be held on Saturday afternoon, March 4 at the Pacific NW District Spring Event. If you would like to donate something for the auction you can drop it off at the church by no later than Thursday, March 2. Some things that are popular are handmade quilts, art, tickets for restaurants that sometimes businesses might donate, baskets of goodies on a particular theme (like movie night, coffee, chocolate, use your imagination) and weekend get-aways at beach cabins, etc.

 

The American Baptist Northwest Women's Conference will be held April 21-23 in Richland. One of the speakers will be Rita Chapman, long-time missionary in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Please see the flyer posted on the bulletin board in the church entrance and pick up a registration packet on the table in the narthex.

 

 

 

Listening to God Spiritual Retreat

 

Each year, usually in February, our church has a retreat to plan for the coming year. This year, instead of a planning retreat we will have a spiritual retreat on Saturday, March 25, led by Joe and Merry Roy. The theme will be “Listening to God.” The Roys will lead us in various activities to help us listen to God’s voice. The event will be held in the morning although we do not yet have specific times. Please put this event on your calendar for March 25.

 

 

 

Latest News from Eastern Ukraine

(This is an email communication from
Pastor Igor dated February 18)

Friends, the last two days Avdeevka has been bombed like never before. Many five-story apartment complexes where people live have been affected. Many wounded and killed. 100 meters from our church apartment, a man was killed. This is our reality. I am feeling more frustrated and stressed, because no matter what we do, the situation is getting worse. We serve people and bring the Gospel to them, and it is so hard to see them struggle like this. They keep on living in the complexes pictured, because there is no place for them to go. We pulled our missionary Alex out of Avdeevka for his most recent bombing. Please keep on praying for Avdeevka and people of Ukraine. May God bless you, Igor Tunik

 

 

 

Kyle & Katrina Williams’ Newsletter

 

Our church supports Kyle and Katrina Williams, American Baptist missionaries in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Some of you receive their periodic email newsletter called “Connect Kikongo.” Unfortunately, it often ends up in spam filters. This week Betty forwarded the Williams’ latest newsletter to everyone on the email prayer chain list. Please check your email for this fascinating and informative letter. For those who don’t have email, there are paper copies on the table in the narthex.

 

 

 

75 years ago President Franklin D. Roosevelt

signed the executive order to intern more than 120,000 Japanese Americans and US citizens.

 

“The experience was too traumatic; it devastated our personhood.... This is my story. I tell it now, to help people to know about and to understand the pain that the internment caused, so that such an atrocity will never happen in this country again.” From a "Messenger" article in November 1988, written by Florence Date Smith.

 

Now 95 years old, she was one of the Japanese-Americans interned by her own government during World War II. On Sunday, 75 years will have passed since President Franklin D. Roosevelt signed executive order 9066 on Feb. 19, 1942, setting in motion the internment of hundreds of thousands of Japanese-Americans and US citizens. NBC News reports that “over the next five years, more than 120,000 people, two-thirds of whom were native-born United States citizens, were forced to leave their homes and livelihoods for quickly-built camps in some of the country’s most unforgiving climates” (find a special NBC report at www.nbcnews.com/news/asian-america/75-years-after-executive-order-9066-n721831). Look for the full text of Smith’s “Messenger” article, and an update on her work to keep the story of the Japanese-American internment experience alive, in next week’s Newsline, the Church of the Brethren's email news service.

 

 

 

Crisis in Nigeria

 

Dear Brethren Baptist Church Wenatchee,

 

Thank you for the boxes of books that you sent to be included in our shipment of Books for Nigeria. Your time, energy, resources and compassion are all very much appreciated! These books will be a blessing to the Nigerian Brethren who will receive them.

 

Our books were sorted and packed and sent on their way to Nigeria in January.

 

With warmest appreciation and sincere prayers for a blessed season,

 

Sharon Franzen

Brethren Disaster Ministries

 

 

 

How to figure out if something you read is true or not

 

We have a responsibility to look for truth as Christians. This is important as we read the news, listen to the radio and watch television, or get our news from the internet or social media sources. Todd Flory, a member of the Church of the Brethren in Wichita, Kansas and elementary school teacher, works to teach his students to look carefully at what they're reading and where it comes from. He's got a seven-point checklist his students can follow:

 

  1. Do you know who the source is, or was it created by a common or well-known source? Example National Geographic, Discovery, etc.

  2. How does it compare to what you already know?

  3. Does the information make sense? Do you understand the information?

  4. Can you verify that the information agrees with three or more other sources that are also reliable?

  5. Have experts in the field been connected to it or authored the information?

  6. How current is the information?

  7. Does it have a copyright?

 

For the full story go to:www.npr.org/sections/ed/2017/02/16/514364210/5-ways-teachers-are-fighting-fake-news.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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