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Posts by Joye Hodges Douthart

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  1. News & Articles : Guide for Accessing Westminster’s Social Media Channels

    Facebook

    Here we share information, inspiration, photos, chuckles, and shout-outs. You don’t need a Facebook account to view Westminster’s page, but you do need one to join the conversations, comment, and share our posts.

    Facebook Families Group

    Families at WPC Durham is the church’s Facebook group for families with children and youth still at home. Here our staff shares Westminster’s Christian education activities, learning opportunities, tips for faith formation at home, and much more. It’s also a forum for Westminster families to share resources and ideas and connect outside of Sunday. Families of WPC Durham is administered by Marietta Wynands, our Director of Christian Education.

    A Facebook account is required for you to view posts by group members, join the group, and participate/post within Families of WPC Durham.

    Instagram

    Instagram is a mobile-based social media app that allows users to share photos and videos and engage with others.

    Westminster has two Instagram accounts: @wpcdurham and @wpcdurhamyouth. @wpcdurham is the main Instagram account for Westminster. @wpcdurhamyouth is the Instagram account for our youth ministry.

    Both of these may be viewed on an Internet browser by visiting https://www.instagram.com/ and entering the account handle you wish to view. But Instagram is designed primarily for use via mobile, so consider installing the app to your mobile device for the best user experience (Note: You may be prompted to create an account). Like Facebook, however, an Instagram account is required if you wish to follow Westminster on Instagram and interact with our posts.

    YouTube

    You can watch our worship services on Westminster’s YouTube channel on Sundays at 11:00am. We share other video content to YouTube as well, including videos activities, story-telling, and resources created by our Director of Christian Education, Marietta Wynands.

    You can reach our channel by visiting  https://bit.ly/WPCyoutube to reach Westminster’s YouTube channel. Worship services go live Sundays at 11:00am.

    Hover your mouse over the lower part of the video to bring up the controls. Click the “CC” icon there to turn on closed captioning, if it’s helpful to you.

    YouTube exists within the suite of apps offered by Google. You do not need a Google account to access Westminster’s YouTube channel and watch our videos, but it’s free to create one.

    A Google/Gmail account will give you access to all of Google’s applications, including YouTube. If you have a Google/Gmail account, you can comment in the live-chat with your WPC friends as the video is streaming and you may post in the public comments section below the video. You can also subscribe to Westminster’s channel and receive notifications when new videos are loaded there.


  2. News & Articles : NEW Online Christian Education Courses

    Our congregation is embarking on a wonderful new journey in Christian formation.  We’re opening our own online school  This means we’ll be able to take courses together on a variety of topics including scripture and many areas of personal and spiritual growth.  

    Some courses are taught by experts through videos, while other courses will follow a more traditional format with at-home readings and questions for reflection. Each time a course is introduced, we’ll meet by Zoom to discuss what we’re learning. Online School will allow us to learn what we want, when we want, and at our own pace. While we need to keep our distance, we’ll still be able to learn and connect with one another as we do so. Here are our first two course offerings:

    Online School for May:  The Bible 
    Small Group Conversations via Zoom on Wednesdays, May 13, 20, and 27, 7:00pm

    Our first all-online course offering for the month of May is a course on the Bible! It’s called Animate: Bible.  The Bible — like God, like humanity — is complex, and crying out for interpretation. And though we may have fraught relationships with how the Bible has been taught, we can find unending grace and freedom if we open it — and ourselves — to new interpretation. In this course, you will gain perspectives on canon, history, testaments, gospels, genre, interpretation, and grace from seven Christian thought leaders.

    This course includes three sessions. Each lesson includes brief videos by well-known biblical scholars, optional quizzes for those who like to check their understanding, and deeper questions to help you integrate your learning. Our Zoom meetings will pick up on those discussion questions. Zoom meetings will take place on Wednesdays in May at  7:00pm. 

    Online School for June:  Practices
    Small Group Conversations via Zoom:  Mondays, June 1, 8. 15. 22, and 29, 7:00pm

    What are essential practices for a Christian way of life? Gain perspectives on prayer, food, worship, sacraments, money, service, and community from seven Christian thought leaders.  

    For each Animate: Practices session, participants will watch a video on their own. Each video features  a leading voice from the Christian faith. Students will spend time on personal reflection and journaling, and share ideas with the group when we gather via Zoom. 

    Both courses will be by Marietta Wynands, our Director of Christian Education. Sign up now for one or both courses. Please contact Marietta with any questions.

    You may also join one of our ongoing Bible groups that are meeting via Zoom.  Learn more


  3. News & Articles : How You Can Help Our Community Partners & Neighbors in Need

    Our Local Missions Committee has been hard at work checking in with our 20+ community partners to see how they’re doing, what their needs are, and how the Westminster family can help.

    View the listing of community needs the Local Missions Committee is tracking and find out what you can to do help our neighbors in need. This listing will be updated with new needs and requests as we are made aware of them, so check back frequently. 

    Contact:  Cherrie Barton Henry, Associate Pastor of Congregational Care & Mission 


  4. News & Articles : Join an Online Bible Study! 

    Connect with your Westminster community, and join together online to learn and study God’s Word. These established groups welcome you to participate in their Zoom gatherings:

    Monday Morning Bible Study (Mondays, 9:30-11:30am) – “Unafraid: Living with Courage and Hope During Uncertain Times” We know Jesus tells us, “Do not be afraid,” but with everything going on in the world, how is it possible not to be anxious? In this five-week study beginning May 4, author Adam Hamilton explores the worries and fears most of us experience and shares practical steps for overcoming them with the help of Scripture and a bit of faith. The series consists of a DVD and discussion via Zoom. Contact: Helen Harrison

    Bible Round Table (Sundays, 9:45am) The Bible Roundtable plans to begin its study of the book of James on April 26. We hope you will sign in and join what is always a friendly, lively interactive discussion. Contact:  Sam Bryan 

    Sojourners (Sundays at 9:45am) This group continues to work its way through the book, We Make the Road by Walking, by Brian McLaren. Contact:  Kay Wellemeyer

    The Present Word Join this group in exploring the theme of justice through the eyes of the prophets.  The Present Word is available online, so even if you don’t have a copy of the book, you can still access the materials. Contact:  Pete McWilliams

    Please contact Marietta Wynands, Director of Christian Education, for additional information.


  5. News & Articles : Celebrating Communion at Home on May 3

    On Sunday, May 3, we’re going to do something many of us never imagined we’d do:  We’re going to take communion together…virtually! That means each of us will celebrate communion in our homes as part of our worship on Sunday.

    This isn’t  the way we prefer to be in communion with one another, but now more than ever we as Christians long to meet Christ at the place where he has told us we will always find him. It’s time to gather with Jesus and the communion of the saints at God’s table; gathered to be fed, filled, and nurtured by the Spirit’s vision of the world.  With bread and cups in our hands and all of us doing this together, this sacrament will be a real celebration of Holy Communion.  Our PC(USA) denominational leaders and your Session have both approved this means of communion during this time.

    As your household – whether there is one of you or a dozen – prepares for communion, we ask that you make a few advance preparations. Get the details in this video by Cherrie, or follow the steps below:

    • Select a cup and plate to use. Your every-day cups and plates will work just fine, or you can get fancy and break out the china. Listen to the Spirit and do what you think most honors this time and space.
    • Find some sort of bread. A freshly baked loaf, a biscuit, a piece of gluten-free bread, or a cracker – it’s up to you.
    • Find some sort of drink. Grape juice or wine are the obvious choices, but any other kind of juice, coffee, tea, or even water (baptism!) will work. Again, listen to the Spirit’s call for the times.
    • If you need help securing any of these items, send us an email by Friday evening, and we will get them to you. If you are interested in making your own bread (as some of us did for Maundy Thursday), try this one-hour, four-ingredient recipe.
    • Place all these items in a central place before worship begins. This could be a table, a small stool, or a coffee table in front of your viewing monitor. When the time comes to share the elements, the pastors will instruct you what to do.

    Because this is a new experience for us all, be sure to take some time after worship to reflect upon your communion experience after worship on Sunday. As you eat lunch, ponder these questions to yourself or with those around you:

    • What did you notice?
    • How did this experience expand your understanding of the ways Jesus meets us in communion?
    • What concerns did you have doing communion this way?  In the end, were they justified?
    • Reformed Christians like to say that a sacrament is an “outward and visible symbol of an inner and spiritual grace.” How did this celebration of communion meet that definition of sacrament?
    • Are there other things in your life that might be sacramental by this definition of sacrament?

    Those interested in reflecting further on this new way of experiencing communion are invited to join the pastors in a Zoom time of reflection on Sunday at 5:00pm. To participate, send an email to westminster@wpcdurham.org by 3:00pm on Sunday, and a Zoom meeting connection will be sent to you by 4:30pm.  Contact: Cherrie Barton Henry

     


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