Dear Floris Family,

As you know, we enjoyed a generous Christmas Eve offering that was initially shared on our website Christmas morning. Since that time the offering has grown as donations have arrived the week after Christmas. I want to thank you for your generosity. Together we will bless children and those who are sick at the Child Rescue Centre and Mercy Hospital, as well as provide job training and assistance to those struggling financially here in Fairfax County. Last night I learned that six new children were admitted to the CRC and began school yesterday. These children were once the victims of child labor who had no access to education or proper care. Today these children have a new life, all because of the way Christ motivated you to care in your generous offering. The amount of money given is amazing, especially as we experienced heightened anxiety about the economy here in the U.S. While I would like to share the amount here, wouldn’t it be more fun to hear that final number in church this Sunday when we can all be together!

Our sermon series on relationships will continue this week. I hope that you will invite anyone who might benefit from hearing about the basics of relationships to attend worship with you. We will talk about Paul’s teaching on the benefits of being single or married and why it is important to see single people as whole and complete. I think what I am learning this week will be very beneficial to people of all ages, and will be useful for those of you who are talking to children and grandchildren about their relationships.

I am in Atlanta today with the Committee on Episcopacy of the Southeast Jurisdiction of the UMC. This committee is composed of a pastor and layperson from each Annual Conference. Essentially, we are the personnel committee for the Bishops from this area. Please pray for our Bishops and other leaders who will be discussing the state of the church and the important work of leadership in our denomination. I am hopeful that our Bishops will lead the church to share Christ with our neighbors and be obedient to Jesus’ calling to work for justice and compassion to the poor and vulnerable.

Marriage Seminar
My friends Rev. Mark and Lynn Miller will be at Floris on January 25 and 26 for a conference on marriage. I want to urge anyone who is married, considering marriage, looking for tips about a healthy marriage orwanting to improve their marriage to attend. Sign up today for this event with your spouse or significant other (if you are contemplating marriage). I encourage you to attend because Karen and I have observed the Millers over the years and know what a wonderful marriage they enjoy. Both are engaging speakers who will keep you interested and provide practical exercises that will enable you to talk with one another and participate in ways that will be a blessing to your relationship. Another great opportunity is a Weekend to Remember. One of these sessions is held in Reston in the coming months. Contact Ross and Lydia Deem if you would like to know more about this experience.

Parking Shuttles on Sunday
Parking challenges were a part of the 11 AM worship service last week. There were no problems at our other services. The Floris parking shuttle from the Network Solutions/XO Communications parking lot will be available before and after the 11 AM service for the next few weeks. Please consider parking offsite. Your efforts will help make Floris a welcoming place for everyone, members and guests alike.

This Week in Worship
Join us Sunday as we continue with our sermon series, Sustaining Relationships. We will talk about how Christians have a long history of affirming singleness as well as the desire to marry. Paul tells us that we must first be whole in our relationship Christ with whether we are married or single. Join us as we consider “Singleness and Marriage.” Scripture: 1 Corinthians 7:27-31.

In Christ,
– Tom

The post eNote from Rev. Tom Berlin – January 10, 2013 appeared first on Today I Saw God.