The Rock and Blue Valley Community Action Partnership Updates
Planning continues for BVCA occupancy in the lower southeast section of The Rock, beginning in Fall 2021. Here’s how YOU and your family can help make this joint ministry effort happen:
- Lend a hand: A work day has been scheduled at The Rock on Saturday, May 15 from 9-12:30. Bring your crowbar, wrench, and gloves as we tear out old lockers and remove other items from the lower level. We need your help for this important first step, so please sign up to help HERE.
- Partner financially:
- Blue Valley is responsible for necessary upgrades to the building, but many are inspired to help. You are invited to support Blue Valley in raising required funds, estimated at $25,000. You may write a check directly to Blue Valley Community Action or to The Rock. In either case, indicate “The Rock-BVCA project” in the memo line.
- The Rock is also using this opportunity to look at external signage for our building. This is currently an unbudgeted item for The Rock and we are inviting donations to cover the cost of the signage and installation. Please email email@example.com or call 402-641-5553 if you would like to learn more about how to participate.
Those who are members of a Seward circuit LCMS congregation and intend to study to become a church worker in an LCMS congregation or school, or who are already ordained or commissioned workers, can apply for a scholarship from the Seward circuit ministerial training fund. The fund exists to: provide assistance to retiring debt of those who are LCMS pastors and church workers; provide scholarships for students attending an LCMS university or seminary to become a church worker; provide training for lay leadership programs of the Nebraska District and Synod. Assistance is limited to no more than $1500 per applicant, per year. The deadline for applications is June 2. Please contact Pastor Mike about an application, or to make a donation.
Action Alert for your consideration:
Concerns with The Equality Act currently before Congress in Washington D.C.:
The Equality Act that is being considered by Congress sounds innocent. All Americans should enjoy equality and the protections of the U.S. Constitution. But in elevating sexual orientation to a protected class, the Equality Act will bring sweeping changes to current laws, to the great detriment of the religious and constitutional freedoms of biblically faithful churches, institutions, Christian schools and individuals.
In fact, those churches and institutions that are bound by the Word of God to the truth of marriage between a man and a woman could be punished for simply standing on our consistent beliefs. The Equality Act effectively outlaws the words of Christ and our free exercise of religion.
The Equality Act expands the definition of “public accommodation” and puts an ultimatum to individuals, religious non-profits, food banks, schools, charities, adoption agencies and others: “Change your faith-based practices or face government punishment.”
What can you do?
- Treat all people with kindness and respect (“You shall love your neighbor as yourself” Mark 12:31).
- Become informed about the Equality Act and the issues of gender dysphoria.
- Consider your role as Christian citizens and make your voice known to your elected officials. Our friends at Association of Christian Schools International (ASCI) have created a simple web tool to allow you to reach out to your congressperson.
- Pray for our officials, government, and the church in these challenging days.
Concerns with the K-12 Health Education Standards proposed by the Nebraska Department of Education:
The Nebraska Department of Education (NDE) recently released a first draft of K-12 Health Standards. These standards are meant to guide curriculum for all Nebraska schools, including public and non-public schools.
The Health Standards are a deeply flawed, ideologically driven document. Should such standards be adopted by schools, children will be placed in peril, many educators will find their professional judgment and conscience under attack, and the culture will move toward a further normalization of child sexualization.
Read the proposed Health Standards and take special note of the “Human Growth and Development” section in each grade. Here are a few highlights:
- In Kindergarten, students will “discuss different kinds of family structures (e.g. single parent, blended, intergenerational, cohabitating, adoptive, foster, same-gender, interracial). Note that traditional marriage between a man and woman is not mentioned.
- In 1st grade, students “define gender, gender identity, and gender-role stereotypes.”
- In 4th grade, students “distinguish between sex assigned at birth and gender identity and explain how they may or may not differ.”
- In 8th grade, students would be taught that abortion is “reproductive care” and how to develop a plan to eliminate an unplanned pregnancy.
What can you do?
- Pray for Christian teachers and staff serving in our public schools, that they may find opportunities to freely share their faith.
- Double down on your commitment to Christian education for your own family.
- Talk about your concern for the new health education standards with your friends. Make sure that they are aware of the educational standards being proposed for every public school in Nebraska.
- The Nebraska Department of Education is seeking feedback about these standards. Please take some time to fill out the NDE online survey and speak up for all Nebraska kids!
- Watch for local Health Education Standards.
As The Rock enters the final quarter of the fiscal year ending June 30, financial support for the ministry has been strong enough thus far to meet the budget needs and also address some maintenance projects that have arisen. Since the end of January, weekly contributions have softened and are still trending downward as we enter the spring and summer, typically times when contributions are lower. While trusting in the Lord’s provision, leaders at The Rock will be keeping a close eye on both expenses and contributions during April, May and June. As always, we are thankful for both your generosity and your stewardship of all God has provided. Learn more about ways you can give, online or in person, at https://www.therockseward.org/giving-at-the-rock/.
Attention high school students who are part of the classes of 2022, 2023, 2024, AND 2025! If you are interested in attending the National Youth Gathering in Houston in 2022, please contact Jen Axt (308) 631-7065 by text or phone, firstname.lastname@example.org by email, or join The Rock LCMS Youth Gathering Facebook page. You can also join the Remind group @therocklcm.
Fundraising efforts are underway for this exciting, fun, Christ-centered gathering of youth from all over the country!
We are looking for volunteers who are interested in learning how to manage the audio-visual, livestream, and lighting console on Sunday mornings. We’ll teach you everything you need to know! Contact Pastor Mike, Tim Moll, or Shane Sloup.
Our May item for the Blue Valley food pantry is Kleenex (any brand of facial tissues). Our April item was paper towels, and if you still have some to donate, you can add them to the collection box. The collection box is in the Rock Cafe. Thanks for being a blessing to the community in this way! You can see our Blue Valley Pantry item schedule on our website.
View The Rock’s service each week from home! We will continue to provide viewing options on Facebook and YouTube for those who need to or prefer to worship from home at this time. We’re so glad you join us for worship in whatever way you do, and we look forward to being together again as a Forever Family!
Join Erika Rolf (RYT-200) or Sara Moll (RYT-200) for Christian YogaFaith classes at The Rock! Class offerings are as follows: All Level YogaFaith – Tuesday and Thursday nights at 5:30 pm, Restorative Candlelight YogaFaith every Sunday night at 7:00 pm and YogaFaith Flow and Go is offered twice a month on Saturday mornings at 8:00-8:45 a.m. Please see our Facebook page for a full calendar and more information. https://www.facebook.com/YogaFaith-Seward-256010628294784/
The Seward City Council repealed the ordinance that required masks to be worn in all public buildings, including places of worship. As a result, our mask policy at YogaFaith-Seward has also changed. Please feel free to wear your mask if you would like to, but masks are not required to enter The Rock or to practice Yoga at YogaFaith-Seward. Class size will no longer be limited to 6 students per class and we are no longer requiring that you sign up in advance for the Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday classes.
However, we will limit Restorative YogaFaith classes to 8 students per class because of the limited number of props that we have available. Please continue to use Sign Up Genius for that class only. We will still be offering online classes for people that want to take our YogaFaith classes at home!
Please click on this link to sign up for a class. If you would like to take the class online please email Sara at email@example.com and she will give you instructions!
If you have any questions about The Rock, need information about our events, or anything else, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Also, if you have a prayer request to submit during the week (or anytime) send it to email@example.com. Our prayer warriors will receive these, as well as Pastor Mike Meyer.