Next Week’s News: April 3-9

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Newcomer Welcome

Please join us from 9:00 – 9:30 AM this Sunday in the Parish Hall for coffee, tea, and donuts to welcome our newest friends to Grace. Our Grace Vestry Participation Cluster will host this informal gathering designed to give each of us an opportunity to share a conversation or two with those friends familiar to us and those we have not yet met. Come spend some time with us!

Sacred Threads Volunteers Needed!

The Sacred Threads exhibit will be displayed at Grace Church from April 13 through May 4. Public hours are 10 AM to 4 PM, Monday – Saturday, and 1 PM to 4 PM on Sunday. Volunteers are needed during the public hours to proudly welcome visitors to our Grace home. We anticipate visitors from throughout NE Georgia and the Atlanta Metro area. To volunteer, email arts@gracechurchgainesville.org or sign at the information table in the Greeting Area.

Painting Update

Painting is progressing in The Grace Center. The staff is temporarily moving into the conference room and two of the classrooms so the offices can be painted. This is causing some disruption to our work schedule and to the availability of rooms for meetings and events.

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Also, please note that if you need to visit the parish offices during the week beginning Monday, April 4, you will need to enter through the back double doors of The Grace Center. Thank you for your patience while our facility is being improved!

Christian Education on April 3

Sunday Forum: In anticipation of Rabbi Biller’s visit to us in March to teach us about the field of Jewish mysticism known as Kabbalah, Dr. Park will offer an overview to biblical wisdom literature (the foundation for Kabbalah) during the Sunday Forum on April 3. We will look at the Wisdom books: Proverbs, Job, Qohelet, Sirach, and the Wisdom of Solomon and their earlier foundation in the earlier wisdom literature of the Ancient Near East from Mesopotamia and Egypt. From the social context of Wisdom Literature, to its literary characteristics, main teachings, and value to the human condition, we will consider how this body of literature can provide insights into how to live with understanding in a world that we do not yet understand fully. Please join us!

Seekers: The Seekers class will not meet on Sunday, April 3.

Youth: All youth in grades 6 – 12 will meet together in the youth room on April 3.

Kids: April 3 will be a group class for kids in grades PreK – 5. The topic is Holy Eucharist Instruction expanded to Pieces of Service.

Mite Boxes

It’s not too late to return your filled mite boxes! Bring them to church with you April 3 or drop them by the parish office Monday-Thursday from 9:00 AM-5:00 PM. All money received is sent to Episcopal Relief and Development to aid those in need.

Study Hall for College Students: Volunteers Needed

After the glorious triumph of Easter, we come to another opportunity for a vigil. Late-night Study Hall for local college students begins April 24. During the week of final exams at Brenau, we are honored to host a space that is open and inviting for those who need space to concentrate and focus. Sunday through Wednesday, April 24-27, our parish hall will be open from approximately 7:00 PM until 1:00 AM. We need volunteers each night to keep coffee flowing and ensure a safe, quiet space for anyone who is studying. We also need 1 or 2 volunteers to make or provide “study fuel” like cake/doughnuts. (It’s also a great time to watch Netflix or catch up on reading . . . or ironing as one volunteer found last semester!) Contact Father Alan with questions or to sign up for any of these tasks.

A Space to Explore Jewish Mysticism

Mark your calendars now to spend a couple days with Rabbi Mark Biller when he returns to Grace on Friday, May 6 (5:30 PM dinner, 6:30 PM discussion) and Saturday, May 7 (10:00 AM to 2:00 PM, lunch included). As part of Grace Church’s ongoing community-wide Spiritual Formation ministry for adults, what we now call The Center for Religious Studies and Christian Practice at Grace Church, we are happy to welcome Rabbi Biller back to our community!

He will share teachings with us on Jewish Mysticism and on Kabbalah – which have influenced the Christian contemplative tradition so deeply throughout the centuries. How do we understand the nature of God? How do we understand our relationship with-in-God? How do our shared texts describe this spiritual reality that helps shape our practice of prayer as a community of faith? It will be a remarkable opportunity to share in conversation with Rabbi Biller as we delve even more deeply into our practice of prayer.

Cost for the event (to cover Friday dinner and Saturday lunch) is $25. RSVP with a registration form and payment to the office, or call Isabel Smiley-Lewis at 770-536-0126 with any questions you may have.

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