Newsletter Updates for the Week of March 6, 2017


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Welcome from Haywood Street:

It was a packed house on Sunday as we delighted in Hartwell’s baptism.

Many thanks  to the St. John Baptist choir for the beautiful music and to Robert for leading the children in a brief Bible study.

Wednesday brought a wonderful meal prepared and served in fellowship with 67 Biltmoreour newest restaurant partner!
Find more pictures and stories from our congregation here


> Haywood Street is still seeking Welcoming Companions to help assist visitors to the appropriate parking areas on Wednesdays between 11:00 and 12:30. Please contact Emily Bentley at 828-575-2477 (ext. 106) if you are interested.> A reminder that the Healing Circle Group meets in the prayer chapel on Sundays from 4-6 PM.

A Haywood Reflection from Mary:

I like the word “challenge” and that it has many definitions. The one I like says that “challenge” is a task or situation that tests our abilities. I put the ‘s’ on because as humans we face challenges on a daily basis. I would like to share some of mine with you.

I grew up the oldest of four children in a military family. When I was two, my father returned from the war and we moved to Southern California. My sister and brother were born in San Diego and 3.5 years later we moved again. This was pretty much my life until I was nearly 16. Different schools, making new friends, saying goodbye to old friends, learning how to navigate a new school, new teachers, new everything. Challenges!

When I was nearly 12, my father was sent to (of all places) Dodge City, Kansas where he served as the Navy Recruiter for 2.5 years. We moved there from Guantanamo Bay, Cuba! Dodge City was a lovely little city and my youngest was born there. We hadn’t lived there even two weeks when the Methodist minister came to visit us and invite us to come to church. That is what helped change my life. Church to me is community. I had wonderful Sunday School teachers, made great friends and felt like I “belonged.” Of course, we moved again (4 more times), but when we walked into our “new” church, I was back in my community. The order of service and the hymns were familiar. Sunday School teachers were very welcoming and, of course, I joined “youth group.” I had challenges, but even more importantly, I had community.

This is what makes Haywood Street the very special place that it is. It is community for all of us who come to volunteer and be companions to those who need to feel like they belong. Every time I walk into Haywood Street, I see familiar faces and faces of folks who are a little bit scared or timid or fearful of not belonging. I know exactly how they feel as I have been in their shoes. My choice to be a “companion” is to welcome and embrace the temporary family that sits around the table I am serving. Sometimes (just like in real families) this can be a challenge and that is where the words “growing through” come in. Every week I meet people who humble me. One Wednesday, as folks were leaving the table, my heart was touched when one of my folks embraced me and told me she would pray for me. I will never forget that. It brings tears to my eyes just typing this.

We always gather in a circle for prayer before we open the doors and welcome our guests. I will always be thankful to Pastor Mark Siler for his words before leading us in prayer. He said that, for him, prayer is a song and led us by singing his prayer. That has led me to explore the hymnal looking for prayers to sing. One of my favorite hymns is “Open My Eyes That I May See” written by Clara H. Scott in 1895. This is the hymn/prayer that goes through my head every time the door opens and my new family walks through the door.



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