It's been a while since the last update, but a lot has happened in the meantime!
Joe Riffe who moved out here from Boston to help launch the church ended a season of discernment with the decision for him to step down from the pastoral team and for his family to worship at a different congregation. Though it is always difficult to go through such a significant change, we are grateful for the Riffe's passion and sacrifice in helping things get going at Table. They recently had a baby girl and Joe found a new job in the area so we are grateful for God's continued hand of blessing upon their lives.
David Tassell, who interned with us for the past year, shifted into an Assistant Pastor role and along with his wife, Brittaney, moved closer to the Fairfax/Centreville area. We are grateful for their commitment to our community and the richness of gifts they bring to us.
Natalie Daratony who started attending our church a year ago also went through a season of discernment and accepted our invitation to do a 6-month internship with us. Natalie brings a passion for children and the arts to our community and we are lucky to have her join us.
WELCOME HILL CITY CHURCH
The pastor of another local church plant, Hill City, had been sharing an office with our pastoral team and when their public worship gathering went on hiatus, we invited them to come and worship with us. They did during the summer and we struck by how quickly and easily our two communities connected. One of the pleasant surprises was how much fun we had playing in a community kickball league together. We have decided to continue through the fall and keep discerning how God is inviting us to keep partnering together.
In addition to our regular joint worship with Hill City Church, we enjoyed a number of special joint services with Daniel's Run Church, the owners of the building we worship in. Though we are all smaller congregations, we are very much enjoying the ability to regularly worship and serve together for the good of our community.
3 YEARS ALMOST UP
When we signed our church planting agreement with the Evangelical Covenant Church, it included a 3-year financial commitment to help us get started. That financial commitment is coming to an end in October and though we are not quite fully sustainable yet, we are confident that as we continue to grow we will get there soon. We are also entering a season where for one year we will begin to put together our formal organizational structure including leadership, membership, constitution and by-laws. Though it may sound dry, it will be an important time of really putting our values and priorities into action.
This fall we look forward to getting back into our regular rhythm. Our women's group will be re-starting, as well as a pre-service contemplative prayer time, a mid-week online learning group and monthly playgroup for stay-at-home parents. It's tempting to want to start a bunch of programs but we are trusting that paying attention to where God is at work and teaching people to discern and join in on those activities is still our primary strategy.
As always, we are grateful for your prayers and support. In many ways, it feels like we are no longer a church plant, but there are many, many reminders that we are still very much in the early stages of becoming an established church. Through it all, we are trusting that God is the one who builds the church and we are doing all we can to align ourselves with the One doing the building.