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The Word

Rev. Jen Porter

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

The Hebrew word for blessed in the beatitudes is 'ashar:' to find the right road, to find our way. Jesus' sermon on the mount begins with the Beatitudes. The way to God's Kingdom looks a lot like these. Jesus word is not easy and we don't explain them away. Jesus' sermon on the mount ends asking if our house will be able to withstand the storm. On this Word we rise and fall.

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Rev. David Baak

Sunday, July 19, 2015

Theologian and teacher Marcus Borg says the Christian Life is "about loving God and loving what God loves. It’s about becoming passionate about God and participating in God’s passion for a different kind of world, here and now.” The author of the letter to the Ephesians says that Christ “is our peace…”; creating “one new humanity…”; reconciling us to God so we are no longer strangers and “together…a dwelling place for God.” Reconciliation isn’t just about fixing; reconciliation is about a whole new way of living…today, and every day.

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Rev. Chandler Stokes

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound. The country just heard a very fine sermon on grace, delivered by President Barak Obama. What was implicit in his sermon was this idea of the transformative power of grace—that’s what we’ll explore this Sunday: the grace that meets us when we are blind…, and then we see.

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2015 Sanctuary Painting Project

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Two weeks have passed since the crew from Bylsma Painting began work in our Sanctuary. At this point, approximately half of the work has been completed. Most of the ceilings have been painted, significant patchwork has been done, water stains and problem areas have been sealed and scaffolding has been built, torn down, moved and rebuilt a number of times. Near 90% of the painting on the west end of the Sanctuary is finished and the remaining chunk should be completed within a couple of days. The plan is to shift the pews to the west end of the building in order to make way for scaffolding on the east side. Pat, one of the leaders of the crew, claims that the painting is the quick and easy part. It's the prep work and set-up that eat up most of their time. The crew has targeted July 17 as their final day of painting, but will require an additional few days to clean the area up.



Rev. Jen Porter

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Living perfectly, loving perfectly, Jesus is calling us disciples to quite a lot. But not alone, these words that seem to raise the stakes on just how serious we really are about following him, do not doom us to failure. Jason Byassee says instead they are “a word of judgment meant to drive us into the arms of grace.”

Worship Schedule for July 2015

Monday, June 29, 2015


July 5—The Fourteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Rev. Jen Porter preaching on
Matthew 5:38-48
Music: Bruce Klein-Wassink and Josh Leckrone


July 12—The Fifteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Rev. Chandler Stokes preaching on
Romans 6:1-11
Music: The Wilkinson Family


July 19—The Sixteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Rev. David Baak preaching on
Ephesians 2:11-22
Music: Diane Helle, Violin


But I Say To You...

July 26—The Seventeenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Rev. Jen Porter preaching on
Matthew 5:1-7, 29
Music: Sanctuary Choir


Rev. Chandler Stokes

Sunday, June 28, 2015

The simplest difference between what we often think of as education and what Jesus intended in his teaching is simply this. Jesus did not call us merely to be students, but to be disciples. And that is a different thing; it requires something more of us.

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Rev. Jen Porter

Sunday, June 21, 2015

There is deep spiritual hunger in the world. How do we share our rich faith in Christ which orients all lives to life. In the words of Randle Mixon, how do "we find the imagery and language that allow us to enter another's world in order to speak our truth honestly, respectfully, and effectively"?

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June Chimes: Retrospective

  Chimes MissionMatters Education
Wednesday, June 17, 2015

The June issue of Chimes is now available. In this month's issue: 

  • Retrospective: A Narrative from Chandler Stokes
  • MissionMatters
  • Educational Programming
  • Music
  • Much more!
Files Size

2015-06 Chimes.pdf

4 MB

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MissionMatters Construction Timeline

  News Updates MissionMatters
Tuesday, June 16, 2015

We now have a plan for the construction being funded by your MissionMatters pledges, and work is moving forward.

At the joint Session and Trustees meeting on Monday, June 1, the leadership of Westminster developed a plan for the construction being funded by the capital campaign:

Phase 1, replacement of the Sanctuary roof, was completed in 2014.

Phase 2, remodeling and expansion of the Camp Henry dining hall, will begin in October 2015.

Phase 3, work at 47 Jefferson Street SE, including remodeling of and improvements to the Westminster Child Development Center, the Downtown Food Pantry, and the Columbarium, will begin in spring 2016.

Because building permits could not be obtained before July 6, and because construction at 47 Jefferson is estimated to take five months, this three-phase schedule allows all construction to proceed at a reasonable pace and without impacting Westminster programs this fall.

We are now within reach of our goal to have 90 percent of the funds for the projects pledged or in hand before Phase 2 begins. The schedule also provides additional time for us to continue to seek outside grant money, such as that already pledged by the Frey Foundation.

As of June 1, 72 percent of the $2,500,000 goal has been met. With your prayerful support and pledges, we will soon have the additional 18 percent needed to begin construction of Phase 2. If you have not already made your pledge to MissionMatters, please do so as soon as possible. You can pledge online, contact the church office to have a pledge card mailed to you, or pick up a pledge card at church. Absolutely every gift matters.

Thank you for your participation, prayers, and pledges.


Rev. Chandler Stokes

Sunday, June 14, 2015

We commission our youth for their trips this summer and we commission the staff at Camp Henry. Rev. Stokes will be preaching on The Vocabulary of Faith and the way that the word "human" is used both inside and outside the tradition. If God became human, what does it mean that we too have been created human?

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High School Youth Group and Kirk Singers Mystery Trip

  Youth News Updates
Wednesday, June 10, 2015

The High School Youth Group and Kirk Singers will be leaving for their Mystery Trip on Saturday, June 20. This year, they’re going to central Appalachia for a Mystery Trip of service and adventure. Whether they’re in the wilderness or the city, the surprises encountered each day will offer new opportunities for service, and to know God and themselves better. The Kirk Singers will be singing at various locations throughout their trip, including a Presbyterian Church on Sunday, June 21. Please keep the leaders and students in your prayers as they embark on this mysterious adventure!

2015 Westminster Softball Schedule

  softball News Updates
Tuesday, June 9, 2015
Day Date Time Facility Opponent Home/Away
Tuesday 6/9/15 7:15 Manhattan Park Rabid Bats A
Tuesday 6/16/15 6:15 Manhattan Park Varnum A
Tuesday 6/23/15 7:15 Manhattan Park St. Stephens Martyrs A
Tuesday 6/30/15 6:15 Manhattan Park HexArmor H
Tuesday 7/7/15 6:15 Manhattan Park Micro Visions Inc. H
Tuesday 7/14/15 7:15 Manhattan Park Juust a Bit outside H
Tuesday 7/21/15 8:15 Manhattan Park Grace Episcopal H
Tuesday 7/28/15 8:15 Manhattan Park GRYP H
Tuesday 8/4/15 6:00 Manhattan Park The Grass Stains A
Tuesday 8/11/15 8:00 Manhattan Park Team 3 A


Manhattan Park is located at 3180 Cascade Rd SE, East Grand Rapids, MI 49506.


Rev. Chandler Stokes

Sermon     Worship
Sunday, June 7, 2015

“For freedom Christ has set you free,” says Paul. And at the very same time, we understand ourselves to be slaves to Christ, those who are bound in obedience to Christ. The paradox is that we find in our service to Christ, perfect freedom. Join us in celebrating Sherrill Vore’s ministry and in re-discovering the freedom promised in our servitude to Christ.

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What the Spirit is Saying

Rev. Chandler Stokes

Sermon     Worship
Sunday, May 31, 2015

This Sunday, May 31, is Trinity Sunday, when we celebrate (of all things!) a theological concept. In keeping with the season of Pentecost, we will be focusing in particular on one aspect of the Trinity: The Holy Spirit. Called Comforter, Advocate, Spirit, Wind, and many other things - the Spirit is also the glue that binds us as a community.

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