by Jeff Greunke, Director of Worship Arts
The following is a continuation of a previous blog post that highlighted serving in a particular ministry area, Chancel workers.
As we head into the Fall and approach our “Taste of St. Luke” event on Sunday, September 15 between the two morning services, I would like to highlight several ministry areas beyond just the Sunday morning experience in which people have the opportunity to delight in serving with their time and gifts. Included are some thoughts from former and current volunteers that serve or have served in many facets of ministry here at our church home.
jg: “Can you share a part of your story about why you choose to do what you do?”
+ Communion assistants
Jim Sorgatz – “I choose to serve communion. What a privilege to look into the eyes of each participant and say the words, ‘This is the blood of Christ’. This saving blood of Jesus cleanses us from all sin. I feel as if I am witnessing a miracle every time I serve. How exciting!”
Ron McCarty – “I enjoy serving communion because it is a way for God to use me as a vessel to offer Christ to those I worship with. I am humbled to know that Jesus uses me to bring His body and blood to His people.”
Launda Powell – “To be honest I didn’t want to give communion when asked. Such a big responsibility! However I tried (chalice is challenging in the beginning – did they get any wine? Did I give them too much?) The reward was seeing everyone washed clean, children coming up with parents knowing one day they too will participate in this tradition, I realize what a privilege I have been given and don’t take it lightly.”
Karl & Marie Rose – “Joy, joy, joy….we approach this service with great JOY! As we give and receive the Lord’s Supper, we also experience a precious time of love and communion with all the other receivers. And the children…how can we not experience a surge of joy and faith as they eagerly receive God’s blessing. This whole process is saturated in the sweet presence of Jesus…both of us are thrilled, humbled, and eager to participate. May God’s Name be forever praised!”
Ron McCarty – “Serving as a Service Elder on Sunday mornings is both a service and a blessing. Attending to tasks that need to be done and assuring the Pastors that the little things will be taken care of, hopefully makes what they do in a Service more relaxed and less distracted. God truly blesses me when I can pray with those who do various service tasks to make worship happen. The person attending the desk, nursery attendant, liturgist, booth workers, ushers, communion assistants, music team, and Pastors all are necessary in making worship honor Jesus. It is a blessing to thank them for their service and to acknowledge that what they do helps us to know Jesus better.”
Rick Darragh – “I serve because it’s the ‘natural thing to do.’ Many years ago when Jesus took hold of my life I vividly recall thinking ‘this changes everything.’ What can or should I do in response to Him? Over the years opportunities to serve have come and gone, but each time the service done is in response to what He first did for me.”
+ AVL / tech
Tom Grish – “Basically, since I have no talents, this is one thing I seem to be able to do to help the church. I really don’t do much else. The music is moving and it does me good to hear it more than once. I try to keep that feeling when I go back out into the ‘real’ world, but I’m not very successful. But at least for an hour or two I feel more at peace.”
Josh Scott – “I serve in two areas on weekends at St. Luke. I support the community by serving as the mix engineer for worship services. The music and message would not be as impactful if not heard or mixed appropriately. In this position, I prayerfully and practically support both the pastoral staff and the worship team in their leadership of the congregation. I see my role that as a musician and trained sound engineer is to support the proclamation of the Gospel to the broader community.”
John Bareham – “Serving reminds me that everything I have, including talents, comes from God. I want to offer the best of what I have (been given) to God in a way that pleases Him. It is satisfying work.”
+ Worship team
Margie Nemerovski – “It is one of the greatest blessings in my life to play my ‘cello with the worship team (whenever I am in town). Music is probably the foremost way that God speaks to me and actually playing the worship songs allows the music to be part of me instead of something performed for me. I hope that the music we make together inspires people in the congregation to love and experience Jesus as much as I do when I am playing.”
Jane Ross – “Praise the Lord! It is good to sing praises to our God; it is good and pleasant to praise Him. Ps. 147:1”
Dora Reader – “‘The joy of the Lord is my strength.’ Playing music on the Worship Team gives joy to me and others.
‘Worship the Lord with gladness; come before Him with joyful songs.’ (Psalm 100:2 NIV)
Our Worship Team provides fellowship of a Small Group for us. We enjoy each other.”
Tony Moisan – “Playing music is a way I can return what I have been given. The profound connection music has with the Word is a joy to participate in. One of the best parts of course is the family of band mates I get to work with weekly.”
Debbie Darragh – “As seen in scripture, I believe that God uses music to bring His people to another level of closeness to Himself. Being a part of that music for His glory has brought me such joy and a sense of serving even from a very young age. Each time I sing on the Music Team, my prayer is that the words and melody will touch someone’s heart to know how much God loves them.”
Kris Johnson – “I was raised in a musical family and have been involved with music within my church and community for as long as I can remember, including studying vocal performance in college. My parents always made sure that my siblings and I knew and acknowledged our gifts came from God and it was important to use them to serve Him. As a wife and mother of five small children it has been challenging to find areas that I can serve at St. Luke. Aaron and I have decided to make an effort to not let our gifts and interests be buried in the dirt and find ways to cultivate our love of St Luke and love of music.”
Ron McCarty – “I enjoy ushering because I like to help people feel comfortable when entering into worship. It gives me a chance to say ‘hello’ to more people and a opportunity to call them by name. If someone enters that I don’t know I try to at least learn their name.”
Launda Powell – “I watched my parents being very involved at church, our second family. They taught me that it’s important for everyone to participate just like at home. I like ushering and greeting everyone it makes me feel connected.”
Stephanie Trax – “I just want to help out in church where I can, whenever possible. I think of it like a family where we all take care of each other, so I want to chip in. Nursery and Sheepfold are both spots that work with my season of life where I have four young children, and I love working with kids.”
Katie Wonderly – “I help at St Luke in the Nursery because it is an opportunity to serve alongside others with a heart for loving. Children are no different than the adults around us who need special care and love—to simply learn about Jesus by being the hands and feet of Christ.”
Karen Baker – “Initially, I started helping in the nursery because Rebekah Young asked me to work at the welcome desk area where parents sign in their children. She knows that I am a MOPS Mentor and this may be a way to further connect with the mothers. Honestly, I really wasn’t so sure I wanted to do this, but told Rebekah I would serve for one year. During the year I wanted to be aware if, or how, God was using me each time I helped in the nursery. Every time I served in the nursery I could see some way in which I saw God either using me or blessing me. It could have been to help a small child stop crying, listen to a parent share a challenge, or even encourage a teenage helper, that made my time worthwhile. I found that giving my time was not only helpful to others, but a joy for me. There is pure joy in simple pleasure of reading a story to a little one sitting on my lap. The year has come and gone and I told Rebekah that I will serve again this year.”
Michell Porisch – “Last year I volunteered to teach 3 year olds in Sheepfold! I started volunteering with 3 year olds when Susie was that age. Now my youngest grandchild is almost 3! I find that age Group delightful.”
Josh Scott – “The second area I have served in is the Jr. High discipleship hour. As a part of a teaching team, we introduced students to the New Testament. Over the past 30 weeks, we read the text together and reflected on what God is doing in our lives. In this role, I teach the historical context of the text and impress upon the students how and why reading the Bible should be a regular part of their discipleship life.”
Judy Hayes – “Working with children is a gift that I am grateful for each day. I think being a teacher is a talent that God has given me. Sharing the gift that He has blessed into my life is a way to give back into our St. Luke community.”
These dedicated people who serve the church love what their task entails. You too can have the opportunity to serve alongside these people and many more as we are looking to build up the teams and begin pairing up people to grow and share in many ministry areas. We would invite anyone interested in seeing what goes on behind the scenes to talk to a ministry leader or team member at “Taste of St. Luke” on Sunday, September 15 from 9:45 a.m. to 10:45 a.m. in the Great Room (gym). Come and visit many of our dedicated ministry leaders and meet some new people with whom you can team up and serve together! And please prayerfully consider if Jesus is calling you into a ministry area that best fits your passion and heart.