Let's gather in worship online
on our website, our Facebook and Twitter pages,
and our YouTube channel

Sunday, August 1 with / Domingo, 1 de agosto con

The Rev. Stephanie Kendell

11:00 am EST
Bloom with Intention: We Pray Abundance


This week we welcome back Rev. Stephanie and orient ourselves to a new month as August  arrives this Sunday. I’m certain that each of you, like me, wishes Pastor Kaji a restorative  sabbatical and looks forward to her return at the end of August.
This week, our scripture comes from the Book of Psalms. It is marked as a Psalm of Asaph, which means it was written and performed in the style of a group of temple singers known as the Asaphites. The Psalm, just over seventy verses long, tells its listeners the story of the Israelites and their God who saved them from Pharaoh, cared for them in the wilderness,  and ultimately appointed King David to rule over them. The section we read this week is from the first half of the Psalm and describes God’s efforts to nourish the Israelites in the wilderness. Let’s read together from Psalm 78:

23 Yet you gave a command to the skies above
Ad opened the doors of the heavens;
24 you rained down manna for them to eat,
And gave them grain from heaven.
25 Mere mortals ate the bread of angels;
you sent them food in abundance.
26 You loosened the east wind in the heavens
and drove the south wind by your power.
27 You rained meat down on them like dust,
Winged fowl like sand on the seashore.
28 You made birds come down into their camp
and around their tents.
29 They ate until they were fully satisfied;
You gave them what they craved.”

[Psalms 78:23-29 (ILB) / Salmos (78:23-29 (NVI)]

You have heard me say this a few Sundays now in our prayer together: we pray abundance. It is a simple phrase, and I am not certain when or how I began to include it in my prayers, but I do know that this passage holds exactly what it means to me.
Here our psalmist names the miracles God performed to meet the simplest needs and cravings of the Israelites. And what’s more – he names the way God met them with language of utter abundance. The meat rained as plentiful as dust and the bird meat was as plentiful as sand by the sea. From the doors of the heavens, this need for nourishment was met and their cravings were satisfied.
I love this language – it is the psalmist’s promise to us of a satisfying portion of that which we crave so heavily that God is moved to intervene. Not a promise of extravagance or a bloated belly from over eating, but the assurance that God can satisfy that which we crave most.
Our cravings will not always be bodily nourishment. Often, they are more nebulous cravings like justice, love, restoration, peace, repair, or joy. The response to these cravings may not fall from the sky, but if we learn to feel the winds from heaven, we, too, will eat the bread of angels.
I pray that we all might find abundant satisfaction for that which we crave this and every week.

Joyfully Yours,

Kelsey Creech
Resident Seminarian

Children and Youth Ministry Update
from Kelsey Creech, Resident Seminarian

Last Sunday, we had a joyous celebration of our final Sunday in Children’s Worship for the summer. We celebrated a birthday and enjoyed fellowship and prayer as one group. We dreamed about books we might read, friends we might make, and things we might learn in our time together this fall.
While we take a break from weekly meetings for Children’s Worship this August, we will have a small bit of programming in our weekly Children’s Worship Newsletter. This programming will always align itself with our scripture for the week, and I encourage you to engage with it for yourself or alongside whatever children might be in your life.
After reading this week’s scripture (Psalm 78:23-29), discuss the following questions:
1. What does this scripture make you think of? Do any pictures come into your mind?
2. What questions do you have about the words we read?
3. Does any part of this passage stand out to you?
4. What did God do for God’s people when they craved food?
5. What is something you have been craving a lot lately? Is it something you can touch or something different?
6. How does God respond to our cravings?
As always, I love feedback! Let me know how your conversation based on these questions goes, and I will adapt as needed for the remaining Sundays. I look forward to hearing from you and wish you all meaningful conversations about this Psalm and God’s goodness.
Joyfully yours,
Kelsey Creech, Resident Seminarian

(The illustration above is from Page 37 of Tiny Truths Wonder & Wisdom)

Co-hosted by Rev. Stephanie Kendell and Rev. Arthur Stewart

With Guest, J. Dana Trent

Wednesday, August 4, 1:00 pm EDT
Join Rev. Stephanie at the 2021 Disciples Virtual Gathering! Registration is now LIVE! Join Disciples from across the US and Canada for this one day, live event on August 7. Featuring Bible study, workshops and worship as we celebrate that NOTHING can separate us from the love of God.
August 15

What is SoulFood Fellowship?


Well, it isn't food for your stomach (though when we are able to meet again in person, we will share a brown bag lunch right after church), but it is food — almost a banquet — for your soul.  

SoulFood Fellowship is a gathering of The PARK members and friends who get together from near and far after worship on the third Sunday of each month.  We engage in conversation that is bound to get you thinking and talking.  We discuss and reflect on books, articles, documentary films, or plays —in light of our faith, Bible Study, and concern for social justice.  

We have concluded our study of Juan Gonzalez's Harvest of Empire, and on July 18 we'll be taking up a new social justice focus—beginning with a review and commentary by one of our participants and followed by our response with regard to what God requires of us.  We would love to have you join us and share your perspective, experience, hopes, and concerns.

SFF will meet next on July 18--but not in August.

For more information, please contact either Richard Sturm or Stephanie Wilson.

Weekly Invitations to Community:

Pandemic of Love

Pandemic of Love is a mutual aid community of care that was started in response to the COVID-19 epidemic. It humbly began on March 14th, 2020 by one person and was intended to help her own local community. But, like an epidemic, the act of love and kindness spread quickly and is now a beautiful movement helping those in need throughout the world.

What is a mutual aid community? It connects people in need with patrons who can help with that need. This is a tangible way for people to give to each other, quickly, discretely and directly.

What’s the catch? There is none. Kind people are introduced to kind people which results in an act of kindness and human connection.

Click here for more info.
Free zoom dance and fitness classes designed for older adults

Videos anyone can watch and participate with to bring some movement and creative expression into the day:

And for those older adults who are not comfortable with or don’t have access to internet, phone classes M-F 11-12pm: (339-207-6343)

Classes are in English now but we are working on adding a Spanish speaking class soon.
Upcoming Events

Saturday, July 31, Community Lunch Program, 1:00 pm, Manhattan Church of Christ 48 East 80th Street

Sunday, August 1, Elders Meeting, 12:30 pm

Saturday, August 7, Community Lunch Program, 1:00 pm, Manhattan Church of Christ 48 East 80th Street

Wednesday, August 11, Bloom with Community

Saturday, August 14, Community Lunch Program, 1:00 pm, Manhattan Church of Christ 48 East 80th Street

Monday, August 16, Bloom in Conversation

Saturday, August 21, Community Lunch Program, 1:00 pm, Manhattan Church of Christ 48 East 80th Street

Saturday, August 28, Community Lunch Program, 1:00 pm, Manhattan Church of Christ 48 East 80th Street
This Week at The Park is published every Thursday by
Park Avenue Christian Church
1010 Park Avenue at 85th Street, New York, NY 10028

Church office:  212-288-3246.   Office hours are Monday through Friday, 9 am to 5 pm.