From The Pastors

Our program at the Washington New Church varies a great deal from week to week, but there are some constants, like Sunday worship at 11:00 am, and regular weekly or bi-weekly meetings of small groups for reading and discussion on spiritual themes.  Among the groups meeting currently are two that are in the midst of a study of the life after death, based on the book, Heaven and Hell, by Emanuel Swedenborg,  one biweekly on Monday nights and the other biweekly on Wednesday mornings, both in local home settings.  All such meetings are open to the public and new members are welcome at any time.
In addition currently we are featuring a short survey course in the Prophets of the Old Testament.  These are scheduled approximately every two weeks on Wednesday evening at the church.

But life at the New Church is much more than just study and discussion.  On November 10th, for example, our young teens will be hosting a “coffee house” social for all ages at the church, and on the first weekend in December we will ring in the Christmas season with a special hymn sing and social event for all members and friends.

In addition we are pleased and proud to be associated with an urban gardening co-operative called Forrested, LLC  that provides innovative insights and hands on training for folks interested in sustainable agriculture and related practices.  A short walk from the church campus, this 10 acre operation is a tremendous asset to our school children as well as the larger community of citizens looking to create a more verdant, food producing urban environment.

In 2014 the church completed a major renovation and addition project that has greatly enhanced our ability to serve not only our own needs but those of the community around us, too.  Although the building is not visible from the main highway it is easy to find on a beautiful, wooded property less than a quarter mile east of Enterprise Road, just south of the Rte. 50 overpass.  We welcome visitors ANY time, and look forward to welcoming YOU whenever you get a chance to stop in.

And don’t forget one of our main uses here is our school – The Washington New Church School.  With grades from Junior Kindergarten through Sophomore year of High School we keep pretty busy with routine and special events focused on the children.  NOTE, whereas the school began 45 years ago as a service for church members, we now have an open application policy and we welcome new students from all over the surrounding community.  We are highly integrated, academically oriented, and spiritually focused.  Check out the parent testimonials on the school page of this site.
Finally, unlike many preachers today, most of us on the pastoral staff write out our sermons and make them available in print or PDF to anyone who is interested.  See Sermons by Category for a listing of recent sermons, including the most recent or featured sermon.
We look forward to meeting and greeting you in person!
 MDG Signature 2

 

From the New Pastor

From
July 17, 2019

Hello, Washington New Church!

I’m writing this on a laptop in my very empty (and weirdly cold, for June) office at Glenview New Church. All my books are in boxes and waiting in my garage for the moving truck to arrive tomorrow, my final sermon for Glenview is written, and my mind is now turning toward the future. Toward you.

I have a ton to talk to you all about. I have hopes and dreams, and I have questions. I hope to talk with you all soon about these things, and get going right away on assessing your present situation and working together to plan the next phase of our shared future. But before I say too much about that, I really need to do some additional listening. Keep an eye out for future announcements from me regarding all that.

For now, though, I think I’d like to share with you my final pastoral message to the congregation I am now departing. Every minister develops over time some core pieces of doctrinal understanding that become themes for their career, or at least for some phase of it. What I wrote for the people here in Glenview represents one of those thematic approaches for me, and is a kind of framework that I have derived from my reading of the Lord’s Word, that helps me order not my only studying, but also my work as a pastor. It comes up a lot in my teaching and leading, in different forms.

Here’s what I wrote, minus some personal mushy stuff you wouldn’t be interested in…

***

So what do I want to say to Park News readers as my farewell message? What one thing do I want you to take away from my three years of preaching, teaching, leading, communicating and being in community with you all?

Well, one is hard. I have a list of seven things. I strongly believe that if you take these seven tasks deadly seriously, and make them the seven most important things in your life–even for a short period of time–then you will see a powerful net positive result in the lives of the people around you, and maybe even in your own life, too. Here they are:

Read the Word. Do it on a schedule. Set aside a regular time to do it. Even if it’s a tiny amount of reading, making it a habit to read the Word will lead slowly to enlightenment and to a closer connection with God.

Worship the Lord in community with others. Showing up to Sunday worship is good for you. And it’s not just about the preaching. There is more power than you may realize in spending an hour with a large group of people in prayer, singing and worship. And even if sometimes you don’t feel like you’re getting something out of a particular Sunday morning experience, your very presence is almost certainly useful to others there in the room with you.

Pray. This is the one I’d pick if I had to pick only one. Pray regularly, just like reading regularly, and also pray spontaneously. Both planned times of prayer and the habit of quickly turning to the Lord in your heart and mind during times of decision making, stress, anxiety, and fear, will improve your life.

Repent. For real, work the steps. Think of a recurring challenge in your life that shows up in multiple contexts. Guess what? It’s not likely to get better without repentance. If you don’t periodically look at yourself and honestly confront your own shortcomings, you’re not going to improve as a person. And if you don’t bring the Lord into that process, you’re going to have a miserable time at it. That’s just how it is.

Avoid anything that entices you to do things that aren’t loving or to believe things that aren’t true. A big part of becoming a better, healthier, more whole person is slowly transforming things that you enjoy but that are bad for you into things that you actively dislike doing. But until that process is complete, there’s going to be some self-denial involved. The technical term for this is “shunning evil”.

Focus on service. Every day. Not just in your “official” occupation, but in the little interactions you have with friends, loved ones, neighbors and strangers. Stop asking, “What’s in it for me?” Happiness is not something that comes as a result of pursuing it. Focus on being useful, and trust that the rest will come.

Love. Love actively. Love isn’t a feeling, it’s a lifestyle. A mission. Love people that you can’t stand. If you have to, pray to love them. Love everyone. Love the Lord, love the Truth as a path to find Him. Love the goodness that exists in every single person you meet, and when you can’t find that goodness, look harder. And love fiercely, forgivingly, and courageously.

***

So there it is, Washington New Church. I could say more about each of them, of course, as well as about how they interrelate with one another. In fact, I think I probably will. But not today.

In other news, I’m writing this in the middle of June, and shivering. It’s just barely broken above sixty degrees, and I’m taking it a bit personally. I’d be less annoyed if I still had some long pants or a jacket I could wear, but they’re all hidden away in the mountain of boxes stacked in my dining room. But my weather app says Mitchellville is enjoying a delightful eighty-seven degree afternoon, so things are moving in the right direction. Looking forward to seeing you all and starting this next (warmer) chapter of my life.

~ Mac Frazier,

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