From Our Pastor: 365 Days of Surrender

Happy New Year Beloved,

What a blessing it is to stand on the threshold of a new year. God has much work and many blessings before us in the year to come. We are grateful for the ordination of Rev. Cheryl A. Lindsay and for all that God will do in and through her as she moves forward in her ministry. Our building project in Fellowship House is progressing, and we anticipate completion in early Spring. We continue to grow and expand our church’s outreach through our various ministries such as our Board of Mission and Outreach, the Community Meal, Jobs Partnership, The Christian Business League and our newest outreach ministry, R.E.A.L. Re-Entry. The more we surrender ourselves in service to God, the more God provides opportunities for us to serve God and God’s people.

On Martin Luther King Day this year, we will continue our commitment to outreach by spending a day ministering to the Veterans in the Louis Stokes VA Medical Center. We thank God for our relationship with the VA, for it has allowed us an opportunity to give back to the men and women of our armed forces who have given so much for us and this nation. I invite everyone to join us in a day of service, as we spend some time with those who have sacrificed greatly, on our behalf.

This month we will hold our Annual Meeting, where we will have the opportunity to view the progress of the year past and to share visions for the year ahead. This is always an important time of reflection and celebration. We encourage all ministries to complete their written reports to be turned in to the church office so that we may compile a record of the individual progress of each ministry.

As we move forward into our 365 Days of Surrender, I look forward to the opportunities that God will afford us to be more fully surrendered to God…in worship, service and witnessing to the grace and goodness that only comes from the hand of our eternal God.

In Humble submission,

Rev. Paul

Black Lives Matter Sunday

In response to the senseless killings and wanton brutality against African American men and boys that has brought profound pain to the hearts of all people of conscience around the globe, in our nation and community, I am inviting our Mt. Zion family, friends and community to join us this Sunday, December 14, 2014 at 11:00 AM, as we make our collective voices heard in observance of “Black Lives Matter Sunday”. I am asking all who join us to dress in black and to unite with us in a special prayer for Black men and boys.

We will be joining millions of people of faith from across this country in using our collective spiritual force to change the heart of our nation. Please invite your families, friends and neighbors to be a part of this important social and spiritual advocacy for human rights and the dignity of all people. Your presence will make a difference.

Yours in the struggle,
Rev. Paul

Black Lives Matter Sunday 12.14.14

From Our Pastor: Rejoice!

What a joy it is to enter once again into one of the most festive seasons of the church calendar. A time when we pause anew to ponder the birth of the baby born in Bethlehem who would grow up to be the Savior of the world. It is a season of immense awe and gratitude for God’s mercy and God’s amazing love toward each of us. What a wonder this is in all of our eyes, to believe that our loving God, robed in human flesh, came to earth simply to save us from our sins and from ourselves. God cared so much about our relationship with God that there was no sacrifice too great for God to make in order to accomplish that renewed relationship.

The slogan “Jesus is the Reason for the Season,” though commonly used, is much more than a cliché. It is statement of fact. The entire Advent and Christmas season is all about our Savior Jesus Christ. It is about the preparation for His coming and the celebration of His birth. But, what is the meaning of the coming of Jesus in a world where greed, fear and injustice seem to be the order of the day? His meaning is ever more significant and important. Jesus came to reunite us with God…to bring us love and hope and joy and peace. We need His presence more today than ever before.

Here at Mt. Zion, we have much for which we must thank God. God continues to bless our ministries in amazing ways. Our 150th Anniversary Signature Gala was a great success. Our REAL Re-entry ministry is up and running and making a difference in the lives of our returning citizens. Jobs Partnership Cleveland completed yet another 10 week cycle of classes and graduated 22 students.

Our Capital Campaign Sunday II was a phenomenal success. We raised a total of $54,000, exceeding our goal and helping to ensure the success of our building project. Our restoration and renovation of Fellowship House is well underway, and we anticipate a great rededication celebration as we culminate the project in the spring of 2015. The Christian Business League will host another Faith and Finance Breakfast on December 5th and Mt. Zion will participate once again in philanthropia led by the Junior League and Sisters in the Spirit.

Finally, we celebrate the successful completion of Min. Cheryl Lindsay’s Ordination Interview with the Western Reserve Association, and we look forward to her Ordination Service here at Mt. Zion. With all of this excitement ahead, there is no reason that we should not find ourselves rejoicing in all of the blessings that God allows us. Let us move into the last month of this year with a renewed zeal for God’s work and with the joy of Jesus in our hearts.

With Jesus Joy,

Rev. Paul

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