October 26th, 2016

There is a tree growing at the heart of BPC. You’ll see it in the narthex outside the sanctuary this Sunday. On the roots are words and images that represent stories of growth and generosity—the founding of the church (1832), the first missionary, a woman, to go out from BPC to Japan (1888), the first interracial Thanksgiving service held in Blacksburg (1957) just to name a few. The tree represents the stories of those who have enabled God’s work through BPC for 184 years.

This Sunday is the first Sunday of stewardship season. The theme is Generations of Generosity, based on Psalm 145: “One generation shall laud your works to another.” The tree is a symbol of those who came before us and the places we now hold. There will be a basket of paper leaves by the tree. Everyone is invited to write your name and year you connected with BPC and put it on the tree. We know the kids will love it, but I hope you will, too, because it isn’t just fun. The tree, like the one outside our front door, is a great representation of faithful ministry over time, of deep roots nurtured in the past and the places we now hold that allow BPC to shelter and support us and so many beyond our doors.
 
I hope you’ll be listening over the next three weeks for stories of generosity and grace sprung from this place, and thinking about your own giving. Stewardship is a learned spiritual practice that takes time and intention to bear fruit; it deserves our best and most prayerful thought.

You’ll be getting a mailing from the Stewardship Ministry soon with lots of information about ministries and mission, and, of course, costs. You’ll also be getting a letter from me to help you with your discernment. This year we’re invited to fill out a Time and Talents card and bring that forward along with our pledge card on Dedication day, Sunday, November 13. Meanwhile, I invite you to think about who taught you to give, what you learned, and what the next step on that journey might be.

Peace,
Catherine

Scripture Readings for Sunday, October 30, 2016:
Habakkuk 1:1-4, 2:1-4; Luke 19:1-10

The prayer list can be found here.