For church leaders and elder boards everywhere, the last few months have presented a near-constant array of complex challenges related to shepherding a church during the COVID-19 pandemic. The latest complex challenge is perhaps the trickiest yet: how to prudently resume in-person gatherings.
We’ve been teaching for many years in Soma that the church is not a building, it’s a people, it’s our family, a household. It’s a body made up of many members. It’s a temple of His Spirit, made up of living stones. We’ve never really been about holding events or hosting services. We’ve tried to live as a gospel community on mission and we’re not going to stop now. We need each other – our city needs us – more now than ever. Below are our plans during this season in which we’ve found ourselves. [Read more…]
Holy Thursday, also known as Maundy Thursday, falls on the Thursday before Easter. Maundy Thursday might lie a bit outside your usual Easter traditions. Easter Sunday, Good Friday, and even Ash Wednesday services are more common than Maundy Thursday services. Nevertheless, Maundy Thursday, along with other Holy Week celebrations, is an ancient tradition, practiced by Jesus’ church all the way back to the fifth century.
Maundy Thursday it commemorates the Last Supper of Jesus Christ with his disciples and the events of his passion which followed. Often, foot washing is included (John 13:3-17) and, in some churches, at the conclusion of the Service, the stripping of the church may occur in which all textiles, crosses, and images are removed or covered until Easter eve. With the setting of the sun on Holy Thursday, the Easter Triduum begins. Triduum literally means “Three Days” and stretches from sunset on Holy Thursday, through Good Friday, and to sunset on Easter.
The Christian Church continues to celebrate today to prepare us for meeting the resurrected Christ on the third day.
We usually do this by celebrating the passover together each year and breaking our Lenten fast.
By observing the Lord’s Supper together, we identify with the disciples who sat at the table with Jesus and realize together that we, like his disciples, abandoned Jesus to his death. We do this not to beat ourselves up but to recall the depth of our need for God’s mercy and the height of hope on Easter Sunday.
Jesus Washes The Feet Of His Friends, John 13:1-17
Get a bowl of water or something big enough to wash their feet with. After the reading the passage, wash each person’s feet. Remind them that those who trust in Jesus to forgive them of their sins will be washed clean and prepared to do works for God.
Holy Tuesday is the last Tuesday prior to Easter Sunday; it is the third day of Holy Week after Palm Sunday and Holy Monday. Similar to Holy Monday, those that do observe Holy Tuesday, typically mark it with readings of particular passages of Scripture and the singing of relevant hymns. [Read more…]
This Lent has been like no other.
On Ash Wednesday, we began with a plan for prayer and fasting, but less than three weeks into Lent, life turned upside down because of COVID-19 and the precautions we were asked to take in order to prevent its spread. As life’s normal rhythms were interrupted, so were our Lenten plans. And we entered a Lenten desert we did not expect to experience. [Read more…]
If you are like almost every on-campus students in the US classes for most of your academic career have been in person and the move to online learning might come as a shock. After all, you’re used to visiting a classroom and having real-time, in-person interactions with your instructor and fellow students and taking notes based on what’s written on a board or on a screen.
After speaking to most of the students involved in our ministry we heard over and over how hard the transition has been and because of the Covid – 19, you need to adjust quickly. We decided to provide 10 tips to help you with the transition.
Hello Soma Friends and Family,
Our leadership team has been working to stay informed about the impacts of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) over the last few weeks. Based on the current information and recommendations available to us, below are some of the steps that we have decided to take in order to address the challenges posed by COVID-19. [Read more…]
Dear Soma Church Family,
With the rapidly changing COVID-19/Coronavirus situation, we wanted to make you aware of the precautionary measures we are implementing. At Soma, we are mindful of the current concerns and want to assure you that we are taking the health and well-being of our church family and our community seriously.
Through much prayer and talking with area pastors/officials, we are going to take it week by week. For this week **WE WILL BE MEETING** at a modified worship time of 10:00am. This is in response to Lincoln University’s decision to “extend” the students spring break given that they make up approximately 1/3 of our congregation. We will be learning what God’s Word says about the hope we have in the midst of crisis while continuing our Journey through the Life of Joseph.
We do NOT want to operate out of fear, but at the same time, we DO want to exercise wisdom. We’ll be taking the following steps to help keep everyone healthy. [Read more…]
The ACTS prayer method is a super simple and straightforward way to pray. This method is used quite commonly in church circles, and it’s taught widely. It’s simple, it’s easy to remember, and it helps to structure your prayer time and prevent your mind from wandering or just going blank. [Read more…]
Since the beginning of our church, we have set our hearts to be a people of prayer. Our rally cry has simply been,
“Prayer is the engine NOT the caboose to the Christian life.”
In every situation, whether good or bad, we try to pray before we act. Many times people act first and then want God to bail them out of that situation, but prayer should be our first response, not our last resort.
Understanding the necessity of prayer is not enough. In order for it to become a part of our life, it needs to become something we look forward to doing. I’m convinced most people don’t enjoy prayer because they have never been taught how to pray. [Read more…]