Headwaters Christmas Eve

WRITTEN BY: Luke Suciu

 

Headwaters Church is having two Christmas Eve services this year, one at 5pm and the other at 7pm both at 2000 N. Wells Street, and the service has been in the planning process for three years. Three years ago, I (Luke) was pastoring our church plant and in the first year of the plant Christmas was on a Sunday, which placed us in a bit of an unusual spot. We did not have any tradition as a church related to Christmas and there were more than a few churches that chose not to have Sunday morning services at all. Their thinking was that immediate families had routines—something about presents under trees—and the church could just have service on Christmas Eve and allow for Christmas morning to be an exclusively family time.

As we thought about Christmas morning we concluded that conceding our Sunday services simply because our culture had attached a time of opening gifts to Christmas morning was allowing the culture to dictate the highest value of in the Christmas Season. From a critical perspective, the most important moment in human history, the incarnation of God in the person of Jesus Christ, was being devalued in favor of family based nice commercialism. It was a pagan tradition that was boxing out the church’s remembrance of the story of Christ. That being said, it did not seem like a Sunday where we should simply have our normal service. So, without having any expectation surrounding Christmas services within our church, we were in a place to be flexible and creative.

We decided we would structure our service to be the exact opposite of cancelling Sunday services on Christmas morning so families could open gifts. We took a pagan tradition—the evergreen tree, which was originally brought inside to show the power of the sun that lasts even through the darkest days of winter—and covered it in the story of Christ. That morning there were no kids’ programs of any kind, instead everyone young and old crowded into the sanctuary. The kids got a small bag when they entered with ornaments that corresponded to the Christmas story (angel, manger, shepherd, etc.) and through the morning we read through the story of the birth of Christ, stopping at moments to sing Christmas songs and with each song the kids we directed to place their corresponding ornament on the tree.

By the end of the morning the pagan tradition of the evergreen tree was barely visible as the Christmas story was covering every little patch of green. That service is one of my most fond memories from our church plant that has now re-merged with our planting church to become Headwaters Church. And this Christmas Eve we are going to continue in the line of thinking that originally led us to embrace the Christmas story and box out the peripheral pagan practices as we give the incarnation center stage in our thinking. Our church family will gather, to remember well and to set up trees and cover them with the story of Christ.

 

When Cathedrals Burn

WRITTEN BY Luke Suciu

 

Monday was an odd day. I sat, like many people, shocked by the images of the burning Notre Dame Cathedral. It was a peculiar combination of captivation and horror and a curious unknown source of heartbreak. I have never been to Paris, I have never seen Notre Dame, I am not Catholic or anything close, and yet as I watched the building burn I couldn’t help but feel a sense of loss. Continue reading

On Giving

WRITTEN BY Luke Suciu

 

If you attend Headwaters Church I hope that by now you have been informed that our church is moving locations. Our church’s leadership has been working on this possibility for over a year and we are very excited about the opportunities that are to come for the Kingdom of God at our future location. Continue reading

Biblical Literacy Classes in Public Schools: A Good Thing?

WRITTEN BY Chase Ringler

 

At a gas station in Indianapolis as I walked out of the door after paying for my Combos and PowerAde I saw a headline that brought a smile to my face. The headline read that there is a push to put Bible classes back into public schools. The headline was from USA Today, and after President Trump tweeted his endorsement for these classes, the Washington Post, The Hill, and Politico all ran stories featuring the rising tide of Biblical literacy classes in our nation’s public schools. Continue reading

Should You Dress Your Daughter as a Princess for Halloween?

WRITTEN BY Luke Suciu

 

If you pay attention to the news cycle . . . it’s a rough time to be alive. At least according to our news sources, it’s a rough time to be alive. There is actually substantial evidence that things are getting much better as a whole, but that is not what this blog is about, so save your optimism for another time: let’s talk about princesses.

If you pay attention to the news there have been a few cycles recently that focused on the topic of princesses. Aside from the annual “do’s and don’ts” list for Halloween costumes that always include banning dressing up as cultural princess, there were a couple instances of famous Hollywood actresses refusing to allow their children to watch Cinderella, The Little Mermaid , and Snow White .

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To the Uncertain Church at the Corner of Eudaimonia and Arete

WRITTEN BY Luke Suciu

 

A couple weeks ago in lieu of a sermon I gave what I called a “family discussion.” The church that I pastor (Hope) is very closely connected to our planting church (Wallen) and, based on conversations and meetings I felt like the substance of that discussion would be helpful to both congregations as well as many—possibly most—churches, so I am repackaging it in blog form.

The content of the that morning was built on two particular problems: Continue reading

We Won’t Talk About Politics In Heaven

WRITTEN BY Chase Ringler

 

We won’t spend eternity talking about politics. Actually, I’m not even sure if we will give a nanosecond to what so many in evangelical churches idolize. Yes, I said it, “idolize.” My scope of evangelicalism is limited to the United States, though I have come in contact with a few brothers and sisters in Christ from around the globe. These dear family members have repeatedly echoed the same thing, “American Christians talk about politics way more than we [fill in country of origin] do.” One German brother even went as far to say that what he saw in the United States was “concerning.” Continue reading

His Chosen Design: HCD

WRITTEN BY Jon Dammeyer

 

HCD Mission Statement: to meet the individual needs of each child in a safe and adaptive learning atmosphere where they can grow and learn about Christ.

I am excited to introduce to you a new ministry at Wallen! Over the past year we have been taking baby steps trying to develop a way to minister to our special needs children and families. Wallen has always been involved in trying to meet every need of all children in our church family. However, we have realized that there is not only an obvious growing need in our community but an incredible opportunity to give kids with unique needs the opportunity to experience the love of Jesus and understand who He is no matter what their cognitive abilities are.

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SHOULD YOU STOP TELLING YOUR STORY AS A WAY OF GETTING JUSTICE?

WRITTEN BY Luke Suciu

 

Tim Kurkjian is a baseball writer who tells one of my favorite sports stories.

Ed Farmer was a relief pitcher who was facing Wayne Gross in an at bat that ended with Gross hitting a home run off of Farmer. That should be where the story ends, as an altogether uninteresting moment that happens hundreds of times during a baseball season . . . but baseball players are weird. Farmer thought Gross took too much time rounding the bases and he took offense. As a good baseball player who lives in a game of unwritten rules, he knew that the next time he faced Gross he was getting hit with a fastball.

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