Message from Suzy and Denny Meredith-Orr re: Interfaith Habitat House, Maranatha Class Mission Opportunity

Dear Friends,

We have finally been able to schedule a slot for Maranatha volunteers to assist with the Habitat Interfaith build. On Saturday, April 17, we have space for eight volunteers to work from 8am to 12Noon. There is also space for eight during the afternoon shift, from 1pm to 5pm. We will be working with others from Temple Israel and the Islamic Society during those times. We expect that lunch will be provided sometime between Noon and 1pm.

Please check your calendars and be ready to sign up for your preferred time this Sunday (April 11th) during class. This project is a wonderful opportunity to work with our friends from different faiths, while helping a needy family accomplish the dream of homeownership.

The BAUMC website has this information about the family who will move into the house:

"Starla Elston moved to Tulsa a few years ago, and with a good job, she volunteered for United Way, Meals on Wheels, Asthma Walk, and other charities. She has known a lot of hardship in the past three years. In 2007 she lost her mother and a stillborn child. The following year, she lost her job, then after her older sister died, a niece came to live with her.
She has found a job, and even works a second job to make ends meet while her niece attends Tulsa Community College. “By attending classes and workshops that Habitat offers, I have learned to save and plan for my future,” she writes. “Between the staff and Habitat volunteers, I’ve been blessed to meet a lot of amazing people and am excited to build more friendships and houses in the future. As an active volunteer myself, I understand how great it feels to give back.”

Thank you,

Denny and Suzy Meredith-Orr

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Published in: on April 6, 2010 at 3:49 pm  Comments Off on Message from Suzy and Denny Meredith-Orr re: Interfaith Habitat House, Maranatha Class Mission Opportunity  
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Interfaith Habitat House – Maranatha Mission Project: April 17, 2010

Please see the posting below from Suzy and Denny Meredith-Orr about finalizing the date for our Maranatha Class mission work on the Interfaith House. I encourage you to join this effort. Steve Jacoby and I have been a part of this project since its wall raising a little over two weeks ago. It’s amazing to be a part of such an activity and see how the house changes shape from one week to another, and, better yet, how it changes the life of the new homeowner.

Don’t be concerned about your construction skills; there’s work enough for everyone no matter how little or how much experience (and skills) you have in building a house. Please sign up.

Richard Wansley

Published in: on April 6, 2010 at 3:42 pm  Comments Off on Interfaith Habitat House – Maranatha Mission Project: April 17, 2010  
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Maranatha, March 14, 2010

“Be kind to those who meet you as you rise, you may pass them again as you fall”
Irish Proverb

About 70 or so people joined us today to hear from Dr. Sandra Costen Kunz, a professor at Phillips Theological Seminary, present her lesson, entitled “The Human Spirit We Nurture in Christian Education: A Human Part or a Human Capacity?”. It was a fascinating, thoughtful presentation that challenged us to consider the role of our biology, specifically the workings of the brain, in the formation of our spiritual self. She help us better appreciate the importance of our “Christian community” and Christian eduation in modelling the principles taught us by Jesus, speculating about how this process triggers our “spiritual gene”, a unique quality of humans, that connects us with God. Thank you, Dr. Kunz; we hope you will join us, again, in the future. And, our appreciation to class member Ginny Walker in our class who has facilitated invitations to Phillips Seminary faculty members who have been sharing their scholarship with us.

Prior to Dr. Kunz’s lesson, we celebrated several birthdays, Joe Harris (3/18), Susan Panciera (3/19), and Meredith Davison Wansley (3/20), and one anniversary, Jeanie and Richard Payton (3/14). A lovely and very appropriate St. Patrick’s Day theme adorned our table of delicious refreshments. Christi and Kraemer Luks prepared the table and provided the healthy snacks, including muffins with “green” zucchini. Yummy! Bill Gertsen tempted us (and many of us yielded to the temptation) with guilty snacks – donuts, donuts! Thanks, Christi, Kraemer, and Bill for the snacks and serving as greeters.

Beverly North, who has done a marvelous job with organizing refreshmens and greeters needs your help; more volunteers are needed for future weeks. Please contact Beverly at bevjnorth(at)earthlink.net.

We had two visitors, Adam Wood and Melissa Young. Please join us, again, at any time!

Several announcements were made by class members. Darlene Lorenz asked for help with moving furniture at Exodus House, next Saturday, March 20th, at 3:00pm. Pam Sherman told us that we can join her and others to “stuff Easter eggs”, an annual Maranatha project, on Friday evening, March 26th. Contact Pam for additional information. Denny Meredith-Orr announced that our class will be helping with the Church’s Habitat for Humanity project on either April 10th or 17th. More later on this opportunity to serve.

David and Susan Rose informed us that they have learned of yet another grandchild that is expected in the future, the second of such announcements for two weeks in a row. John Sherman’s mother was hosptalized but is now successfully recovering from her illness. John also let us know that he has a contract on the sale of his house; he has been looking forward to its sale for some time.

Lynn Russell asks that we all “save the date” for an evening at the Designer Showcase, scheduled for April 19th, from 7:00pm to 9:00pm.

Ginny Walker share a prayer and meditation with us this morning following announcements.

If you there this morning, it was great fellowship and education, as you well know. If you were unable to be with us this morning, we missed you, and recommend that you check out our website (www.maranathaclass.org) for what’s going on in the future. Also, Dr. Kunz’s lesson will be posted on our podcast soon; look for it at http://www.bostonavenue.org/maranatha.shtml.

Next Sunday and the following week (Palm Sunday), we will have Reverend Bill Tankersley as our teacher. Later this week, I’ll send you an announcement about his topic. Remember that Easter Sunday will a “brunch Sunday” for us. Have a blessed week!

Richard Wansley and Meredith Davison
Presidents

Published in: on March 16, 2010 at 6:50 am  Comments Off on Maranatha, March 14, 2010  
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Maranatha, March 7, 2010

“If you have health, you probably will be happy, and if you have health and happiness, you have all the wealth you need, even if it is not all you want.”
Elbert Hubbard, American writer, publisher, artist, and philosopher (1856 – 1915)

Elbert Hubbard made the above statement about 100 years ago, demonstrating that, even then, there was debate regarding health care and how much you need versus how much you want. Earlier today, Michael Lapolla, a professor at OU-Tulsa, presented to our class on the standards that he uses to “score” health care reform proposals. He also informed us about several local efforts to serve those in our community who are uninsured or under-insured, the Unused Prescription Medicine program and the Oklahoma Insurance Commissioner’s State Coverage Intiative, the latter which is designed to subsidize insurance coverage for many who cannot otherwise afford health insurance.

Following Mr. Lapolla’s presentation, there was a long line of Class members who sought more conversation with him. Several members asked if it were possible to set up a special event at the Church to allow more time to hear and talk about this important issue that is currently much in the news and our thoughts. I’ll be speaking with our Church officials and Mr. Lapolla to see if this option might be feasible.

Several celebrations were noted in class, Kendall Carpenter’s birthday (3/8), as well as Michelle & Kirk Place’s anniversary (3/7) and Pam & John Sherman’s anniversary (3/10). Our Greeters who also provided tasty refreshments were Kendall & David Carpenter and Nancy & Joey Manduano. Dave and Carol Grimm are no longer visitors, they are MEMBERS! Welcome Dave and Carol! Other visitors for some or all of today were Ashley Ann Payton and Alexis Brownlee. Come back, anytime!

Denny Meredith-Orr reported on the mission “painting party” on Saturday at Exodus House. Thank you to all those Class members and your families who helped with this important Methodist program yesterday. In April, our Class will be invited to help with the Habitat for Humanity houses being built jointly by Christians, Jews, and Muslims in Tulsa. Stay tuned for more information from Denny on this opportunity.

Sharon Earley reported that the Funds Committee met earlier this morning to begin its deliberations on distribution of those dollars raised at our annual Christmas auction. The next meeting will be held at 9:00am, Sunday, March 21st, in our classroom, prior to Sunday School. If you wish to nominate a candidate for our funds, please send an E-mail or other message to Sharon (sharon.earley(at)williams.com) or Richard Wansley (richard.wansley(at)okstate.edu). Please be specific about the interest and the amount of funds that you are recommending. Be reminded that our agreed upon policy regarding funds distribution prioritizes our own Church’s needs, then Methodist interests, and finally, other community programs or projects.

An unusual joy was reported by Ginny Walker. A baby was born at “Methodist Manor” this past week! Yes, a baby! Apparently, a staff member unexpectedly give birth at the Manor before being able to get to the hospital. The child who is doing well was dutifully named “Miracle” by the parents. Other joys included Beverly’s report of having finally found a teaching job, and Judith Payton who is recovering with success following surgery. It’s a blessing to us to share your joys with you!

Concerns were expressed for Lynn’s friend, Nancy, who has suffered a massive stroke, children at Sharon’s school whose parents were killed recently, and Jim’s friends who are struggling with post-traumatic stress. William gave us an update on his health; he’s been dealing with chest pains without any meaningful diagnosis from physicians. Gabriele’s mother has had a heart attack, and Gabriele is heading back to her mother’s home to help as best she can. Our thoughts and prayers are with all these people, family, and friends mentioned here and reported this morning. If you wish members to know about concerns that our Class might address, please contact our Caranatha Chairs, Karen Campbell or Barbara Meehan.

Lynn Russell gave our prayer before the presentation by Mr. Lapolla.

Next week, our teacher will be Professor Sandra Costen Kunz, Phillips Theological Seminary, who will address the topic entitled, “The Human Spirit We Nurture in Christian Education: A Human “Part” or a Human “Capacity”?” We do so hope that you will be with us next week. Have a marvelous week!

Don’t forget to check out our website from time to time, http: www.maranathaclass.org.

Richard Wansley and Meredith Davison
Presidents

*Note that you will need to type email addresses into an email program substituting “@” for “(at).” I have edited email addresses so that recipients will not pick up additional spam from autobots that might be searching our posts. Also, for contact information, you can find our newest roster on the Class Member Page. -brm

Published in: on March 7, 2010 at 6:01 pm  Comments Off on Maranatha, March 7, 2010  
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Maranatha, February 14, 2010

“Life must be understood backwards; but … it must be lived forward.”
Soren Kierkegaard, Philosopher/Theologian

We had an inspiring lesson today from our resident “composer” and musician extraordinaire classmate, Rob Reck, about his trip to London during the Christmas holidays to the premier performance of his composition, “Close to Thee”. It was interesting to hear about his trip and understand more about Rob’s passion for composing music.

Today, we recognized birthdays: Keith Madden (2/14), Sam Smith (2/17), and Ginny Walker (2/23) and anniversaries: Mary and Randy Elliott (2/15) and Suzy and Rob Morgan (2/16).  Celebrate!  Valentine refreshments and greetings were provided by Michelle and Kirk Place as well as Barbara and Paul Loyd.  There were announcements about the Chili Supper on February 22st (contact Suzy or Denny Meredith-Orr) and the March social, stuffing Easter Eggs on Friday evening, March 26, for the children’s Easter egg hunt.  Upcoming mission opportunities include an Exodus House project in March and working on the Habitat for Humanity house in April. Joys and Concerns were expressed by members.  Concerns were shared for Terry, Pam Sherman’s friend, who has been put in hospice; Lynn’s friend Larry who was diagnosed with cancer, Allen Briggs brother-in-law who has prostate cancer; Patricia Ketter who has been diagnosed with breast cancer; and a friend who lost her grandfather and grandmother soon after the birth of her child. Ginny Walker expressed joy over her upcoming trip to California to celebrate her birthday with her daughter.  We also expressed sympathy to Joe Harris whose mother Margaret died last week; it was a joy to hear Joe talk about his wonderful memories of his mother and the influence she had on his life.

We welcomed several visitors: Jim and Sarah Young, former members who were visiting from Colorado Springs, Samantha Luks, and Lauren Tallent. We also welcomed a new member, Laurie Spencer to the class. Laurie is an artist whose pottery chalices are used in our communion services.

Next week, Debbie Petersen, BAUMC Mid-High Youth Director,  will discuss her work with the church youth programs.  Join us; invite others!

Have a great week!

Meredith Davison and Richard Wansley
Presidents

P.S., See this informative note from Allene and Rex Donley:
Hopefully you will never need this service but it is good information for everyone to have.
Cleaning for a Reason
If you know any woman currently undergoing Chemo, please pass the word to her that there is a cleaning service that provides FREE housecleaning – 1 time per month for 4 months while she is in treatment.

All she has to do is sign up and have her doctor fax a note confirming the treatment. Cleaning for a Reason will have a participating maid service in her zip code area arrange for the service.  http://www.cleaningforareason.org
Please pass this information on to bless a woman going through Breast Cancer treatment. This organization serves the entire USA and currently has 547 partners to help these women. It’s our job to pass the word and let them know that there are people out there that care. Be a blessing to someone and pass this information along.

Published in: on February 15, 2010 at 8:38 pm  Comments Off on Maranatha, February 14, 2010  
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