Don't go to Church, Be the Church!

First- a progress report on your staff.  Rome First is blessed to have a very capable and loving church staff. As you may know, we have had some “turnover” the last few months.  For now, we are fully staffed and everyone on staff is eager and ready to help you in your spiritual development.

Matthew 16:25
For anyone who keeps his life for himself, shall lose it, and anyone who loses his life for me shall find it again. 

Second, a report on some of the exciting ministries of which you are a part of in the community –The Foster Care Support Team has surrounded the Puryear family and is preparing to help the school age children start a new school year.  If you would like to help by cooking a one time meal for the family or if you would like to join the support team, please contact Gordon Leiter at leiter@bellsouth.net or call (706)234-0931.

The North Broad Youth Center located at 1148 N. Broad St. is launching their after school care and expanding the hours and scope of their educational program to reach more children in the North Rome area.  Contact Melanie Baker at mgbaker57@comcast.net or Pastor Terri Mayes of the Greater Refuge Ministries at (706)622-2448.   “Rising Stars” program begins in August. It will focus on youth between the ages of 9 and 14 who come to the center after school. “We’re going to train them in every area, social skills, politics, community service and, of course, we’re going to do reading math, science, and technology,” Mayes said. “We want to give them something to do after school besides hanging out on a corner and getting in trouble.”. Reading to a child or tutoring after school are some of the ways you can Love God, Love People and Serve the World!

This summer Rome First hosted two Create Academy's in May and June.  More than 85% of the children attending the Create camps were not members of Rome First!  Radical Hospitality and reaching out to Welcome and Invite All as partners in transformation!  Serving and Loving Rome by opening our hearts, doors and, minds to All!  Future Create Camps are planned throughout the school year. Volunteering to lead or to help at the Create Camps is a great way to Love God, Love People and Serve the World!

The Community Kitchen fed people over the summer including children.  The first week of every month volunteers from Rome First serve at the Community Kitchen.  If you would like to be a part of the Community Kitchen team, simply show up on Monday of the First week of every month at the Community Kitchen located at 1308 N Broad St NE, Rome, GA 30161, or call the Kitchen at (706) 622-2097 to speak with Director Drew Taylor, to find ways you can help feed our neighbors and serve the world.

The Faith and Deeds Clinic continues faithfully to serve our community. Formerly known as the Rome Free Clinic, Faith and Deeds provides free to reduced cost health care and services to Rome and Floyd County.  If you would like to volunteer or help at the Faith and Deeds Clinic, call John Pillsbury at jlpillsbury0114@aol.com or(706)295-2201 or Renee Blackburn @ freeclinic.rome@gmail.com or(706) 234-1331  at the Faith and Deeds Clinic.  Serving through Faith and Deeds is another way of Loving God, Loving People and Serving the World.  One way everyone can support the Faith and Deeds Clinic is by buying tickets and attending the Tomato Sandwich Supper hosted at Rome First on Friday, August 4.  Tickets are available in the Church Office!

Our partnership with the Hospitality House continues to grow and flourish.  If you would like to volunteer to help in the Hospitality House Thrift Store call Georgia Burns at georgiaburns@gmail.com or (706)295-1516.  Whether you can give an hour a week or a day a week, your help is appreciated and your service is one way of Loving God, Loving People and Serving the World.

UPDATES ON OTHER “PROJECTS” around the Church buildings.

            The Windows in the Sanctuary are almost finished!  There will be a hydraulic lift positioned in front of the Sanctuary for some part of August.  The lift will block the front steps and some of the sidewalk.  The lift will be used to finish the work on the “BIG” Window in the Balcony.  The Balcony will be closed for the month of August so the workers can complete the restoration and repair of the windows in the historic sanctuary.

There will soon be a new roof on our building at 208 East Second Ave (the Building that houses Good Neighbor and The Administrative Offices of the Hospitality House)  A storm damaged the roof and necessitated a total roof replacement along with some interior repairs.

There are new interior directional signs positioned around the campus to help visitors and guests navigate from one building to another.  The signs are colorful, inviting and easy to read.

One Board appointed an ad hoc committee to review accessibility from building to building and investigate possible uses for the courtyard.  The Ad Hoc Team will make their report at the One Board Meeting on August 8 at 6:00 PM in A-203.

Don't go to Church, Be the Church!

Rome First is seeking to be the Church - A Church that represents the Body of Christ by reflecting the traits and characteristics of Christ: Loving God, Loving People and Serving the World.  An article written by Dr. Clay Routledge, Professor of Psychology at North Dakota State University, cites a recent Pew Research Study that reports –“Polls indicate a decline in religious affiliation, practice, and belief. Just a couple of decades ago about 95 % of Americans reported belonging to a religious group.  This number is now around 75%. And far fewer are ‘actively religious’: The percentage of regular* churchgoers may be as low as 15-20 percent! (*-regular church attendance is defined in this study as attendance in worship once every six weeks) As for religious belief, the Pew Research Center found that from 2007 to2014 the percentage of Americans who reported being absolutely confident God exists dropped from 71 percent to 63 percent.”

We will continue to seek ways to be faithful in Loving and following God by Loving People and leading them to follow God’s lead too!  If you are not already a part of a small group for Discipleship (growing deeper in your own spiritual journey) and in a place to serve -actively living out your faith and bearing witness to the Love of God in your life, I encourage you and invite you to find your place at Rome First.

I look forward to seeing you in worship and in service as we seek to Love God, Love People and Serve the World!

Shalom,
Robert ><>