Good Words

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July 27, 2014 – Erin Bair

John 14:8-14 / Psalm 105:1-11 / Philippians 1:3-11

Listen to Sunday’s songs here.

Do You See Anything?

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July 6, 2014 – Erin Bair

Ephesians 1:15-21 / Psalm 30:1-5 / Mark 8:22-26

Listen to Sunday’s songs here.

Grounding our church in prayer

Hello friends,

Two exciting things are happening this week — one for our local congregation, and one for our wider Anglican family — and they each bring great opportunities for prayer:

  1. praying on the floorTomorrow, June 18, from 2 – 3 pm, our new sanctuary will be open for us, and we can literally “ground” our sanctuary withprayer. The finished flooring is about to go in, but before it does, we’ll have a chance to cover the subfloor with scripture and prayers. We want everything we do at Restoration to be rooted in the truth of God’s word and in prayer — and this is a great way to symbolize that foundation. Plus you get a sneak-peek at the building. Closed-toed shoes required!
  2. Starting this Thursday evening, the College of Bishops of the Anglican Church in North America (that’s our denomination) will meet to pray and elect a new archbishop. Outgoing Archbishop Robert Duncan has served his five-year terms with great faithfulness, wisdom, and devotion to Christ and his Church. Please pray for Archbishop Duncan as he steps down, and please pray for the College of Bishops, including our own Bishop John Guernsey, for wisdom and discernment as they elect our next leader. If you’d like some more prompts on how to pray, this blog post has some excellent ideas.

I hope to see many of you tomorrow afternoon, and I’m grateful to pray for our church alongside faithful people like you.

– Erin

Not My Job

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June 15, 2014 – Erin Bair

John 17:6-19 / Psalm 8 / 1 Thess 5:12-28

Listen to Sunday’s songs here.

What’s next for Restoration?

cornerstoneFive years old. So much can happen in five years. My nephew is about to turn five, and he’s gone from being a wrinkly (but adorable!) newborn into a spunky little kid who can write his name, tell bad jokes, throw his big sister under the bus one minute, and then turn around and display heart-melting kindness the next. A lot happens in five years.

Restoration is now five years old, and a lot has happened in our five years, too. We’ve grown from a ragtag gathering of 75 people figuring out how to do church together into a dynamic community more than 500-strong, worshiping and serving and living life together week in and week out. And after a 14-month stint at Little Falls, we’re on the cusp of moving into a beautiful new home back on N. Quincy Street.

But what’s next? As Clay taught us on Sunday, to be a Christian means to be always growing, because we are in a relationship with a God whose nature is to give life. The same is true for our church. So over the last year, Restoration’s vestry and staff have been in a process of discerning what kind of growth God is calling our church to over the next five years. We’re excited about what we’ve heard from God, and we’re excited to invite you to be part of the journey.


A lot can happen in five years. So please plan to join us for a specialparish meeting after the service on Sunday, June 8. We’ll share with you the vision God’s given us for how, byGod’s grace, Restoration will grow in the years ahead. We’ll have lots of time for questions and input, too. After all, this is a journey that we’re all on together.

– Erin

When Death is Good News

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April 19, 2014 – Erin Bair

Easter Vigil Readings

Holy Week 2014

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Holy Week — the week between Palm Sunday and Easter — is the heart of the Christian year. This is the time when we remember Jesus’ final days, his passion and death, and ultimately his glorious resurrection. We’re deliberate about walking through this story step by step, inviting God to draw us more deeply into the great truth that Jesus died for our sins and rose from the dead so that we might have life in him.

Please plan to join us as we journey together to the cross and the tomb.

Palm Sunday  —   April 13  —  5 pm  —  Sanctuary

  • We’ll begin our worship outside, waving palms and shouting, “Hosanna!” We’ll end our worship with the story of Jesus’ trial and execution, shouting, “Crucify him!” It’s a powerful journey over just 90 minutes — and a bit of a preview of the week to come.
  • Kids’ Small Groups, including Nursery, available.

Maundy Thursday  —  April 17  —  7:30 pm  —  Sanctuary

  • A service of footwashing and communion. We remember the story of Jesus’ last supper with his disciples, when he taught them to serve each other and to remember him in the breaking of bread.
  • Nursery available.

Good Friday  —  April 18  —  12 – 3 pm  —  Chapel

  • The chapel will be open for silent prayer and meditation.
  • At 12, 1, and 2 pm, there will be an opportunity to pray through the stations of the cross — key moments in Jesus’ passion and death.

Good Friday  —  April 18  —  7:30 pm  —  Sanctuary

  • The Seven Last Words of Christ. A service of prayer, singing, and meditation on the things Jesus spoke from the cross.
  • Nursery available.

Great Vigil of Easter  —  April 19  —  8:30 pm  —  Chapel

  • A beautiful service that begins outside with the kindling of the new fire; then we tell the whole story of creation, fall, and redemption, finally shouting out the first joyful “Alleluias!” of Easter and celebrating the Eucharist.
  • A “resurrection party” follows downstairs — we’ll break our Lenten fasts as we celebrate the resurrection.

Easter Sunday  —  April 20  —  5 pm  —  Sanctuary

  • We celebrate the good news of Jesus’ resurrection with joyful worship.
  • Nursery available; kids preschool and older will remain in the sanctuary for the service.



Entering Lent

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Lent begins on Wednesday, March 5. This season—the 40 days before Easter—is a journey up to Holy Week, when we remember Jesus’ death for us and we celebrate his resurrection. Lent is a time to go deeper in some of our spiritual practices, things like prayer, self-examination, fasting, and giving. It’s a way of giving God a little more space in our lives as he shapes us to look like our crucified and risen Savior.

This year, we’re offering you a word-a-day journey through Lent. Each day there is one word and one verse for you to reflect on, pray about—and look for in the world around you. When you see it, snap a photo with Instagram and share it. Together we’ll build a visual record of all the places we see God at work in us and in the world around us.

Want to participate?

  • In Instagram, follow @restoarts, and then @restoarts will follow you.
  • Each day, take a photo, label it with the day’s word, and tag it with #restoarts. Share it on Facebook too!

Not on social media?

  • Simply reflect on the daily word and verse, asking God what he wants to say to you through them.
  • Follow along on our website. A selection of photos on the home page will take you to a full gallery of everyone’s pictures.

Need a reminder?

  • We’ll send you a daily email or text with the day’s word and verse. Sign up here.

Here’s your Lenten word-a-day:

March 5 Fast Isaiah 58:6
March 6 Thirst Matthew 5:6
March 7 Humble Isaiah 58:5
March 8 Longing Psalm 84:2
March 9 Chosen Isaiah 42:1
March 10 Sober I Peter 5:8
March 11 Gentle Isaiah 42:3
March 12 Repent 2 Chronicles 7:14
March 13 Justice Isaiah 42:4
March 14 Expectation Jeremiah 29:11
March 15 Temptation Matthew 18:7
March 16 Servant Isaiah 49:7
March 17 Pray Mark 1:35
March 18 Gathered Isaiah 49:5
March 19 Broken Psalm 51:17
March 20 Light Isaiah 49:6
March 21 Wilderness Deuteronomy 2:7
March 22 Fed Deuteronomy 8:3
March 23 Obey Isaiah 50:5
March 24 Honest 1 John 1:8-9
March 25 Trust Isaiah 50:10
March 26 Cusp Isaiah 43:19
March 27 Help Isaiah 50:7
March 28 Listen Proverbs 8:34
March 29 Hope Ezra 10:2
March 30 Sorrow Isaiah 53:3
March 31 Still Psalm 37:7
April 1 Judgment Isaiah 53:8
April 2 Receive Proverbs 10:8
April 3 Sin Isaiah 53:12
April 4 Quiet Zephaniah 3:17
April 5 Forgive Colossians 3:12-13
April 6 Barren Isaiah 54:1
April 7 Wait Psalm 38:15
April 8 Compassion Isaiah 54:8
April 9 Form Galatians 4:19
April 10 Love Isaiah 54:10
April 11 Mourn Joel 2:12-13
April 12 Prepare John 14:2-3
April 13 Praise Isaiah 61:3
April 14 Good news Isaiah 61:1
April 15 Honor Is 8:12-13
April 16 Suffer Luke 17:25
April 17 Serve John 13:14
April 18 Remember Luke 23:46
April 19 Dead Matt 27:59-60
April 20 Life John 20:31

I’m looking forward to journeying through this season with you.

– Erin

Snow day

Hi folks —

In case you hadn’t noticed, it’s snowing! We want everyone to stay safe and warm, so we’re canceling the two events that were scheduled for tonight:Arlington Snow

  • Women’s Happy Hour at Grand Cru Bistro
  • Silk Road Prayer Meeting at the Eberhardts’

Stay tuned to the worship guide and the church calendar for updates on whether and when these events will be rescheduled.

Happy sledding,

– Erin

Anglican — what’s that?

I’ve been told by Liz and David that shameless self-promotion of our small groups is perfectly acceptable, so here goes:

You should really join my small group.

David with fellow Anglicans in Nairobi

David with fellow Anglicans in Nairobi

Why? Because we’re going to be talking about what it means to be Anglican. After all, it’s a third of our name. The “Restoration” part comes from the big project God is up to in the world, and the “Church” part is pretty self-evident. But that whole “Anglican” bit? Not so much.

“Anglican” is part of our name. And it’s the name of our denomination. But it’s more than that. I describe Anglicanism as a particular way of being a Christian. It’s certainly not the only way of being a Christian. But it’s a really good one. And at Restoration, it shapes our worship, grounds our theology, provides a pattern to our spiritual lives, and connects us to an entire community of Christians throughout the world.

So why would you want to learn more about what it means to be Anglican?

  • You, like me, are kind of a church nerd, and just think this stuff is interesting. [Crickets…]
  • You really like Restoration, but you don’t really know why we do a lot of the stuff we do (like reciting scripted prayers, or baptizing babies, or making the sign of the cross, or having Communion every week). You’d like to learn more about the church, what we believe, where all this stuff came from, and why it’s relevant today.
  • You’ve decided Restoration is where you belong, and you’d like to take the next step in your faith commitment — by being confirmed.

What’s it mean to be confirmed? I’ve written about it more extensively here and here (ignore the date-specific details — the posts are a couple of years old), but the brief explanation is that confirmation is an opportunity to make a public declaration of your Christian faith, to express your desire to live out that faith in an Anglican context, and to have a bishop lay hands on you and pray for you to be strengthened by the Holy Spirit for the work God has called you to do. It’s a powerful experience.

Greg, a Restoration member who was confirmed last year, described why he was choosing to be confirmed:

My time at Restoration has truly cemented much of the transformation that was begun in 2005.  Restoration truly has been a source of healing from wounds that I am still identifying. Communing with fellow members weekly, hearing the word from David, singing as a community with Matt, and our fellowship with Erin, has given me a taste of the redemptive beauty of the body that Christ suffered and died to create. The intimacy that Elaine and I shared with Ray and BJ during pre-marital counseling offered a glimpse of the type of fellowship described of the Churches in Acts. And, perhaps most important of all, I am astonished by the beauty that is the Anglican liturgy and the manifestations of our faith at Restoration. My confirmation in the Anglican Church of North America is the next step of God’s redemption of my life.

If you’ve experienced something like Greg has during your time at Restoration, then confirmation might be a great next step for you.

Bishop John Guernsey will be visiting Restoration on March 30, 2014, and he will celebrate confirmations then. If you would like to be confirmed, you must be part of this small group. But the small group is open to everyone, whether or not you’re interested in confirmation. We’ll meet Monday evenings beginning on January 27 from 7:30 – 9:00 pm in the Library at Little Falls.

So go ahead and register today! Questions? Leave a comment below, or hop over here and choose “Confirmation” from the drop-down menu.

– Erin

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