Archives For St. Andrew’s

Dear Friends,

We stand on the shoulders of generations of faithful men and women who have called St. Andrew’s home for almost 200 years. The change this country has navigated in those two centuries is almost unimaginable. And yet, the men and women of this church rose to meet every challenge they faced.

Similarly, in our day, we are witnessing a profound cultural revolution – a revolution on par with some of the most colossal in history. There are many causes for this profound change, but one that must not be overlooked, particularly for churches, is what sociologists have come to describe as secularism. Simply stated, secularism is the emptying of God from the public spaces; leaving many of our friends and family members to wrestle with the issues of life without recourse to God.

In the face of rising cultural secularism some churches/leaders are advocating a retreat from the public square, effectively abandoning their public witness, and turning their churches into enclaves protecting them from this cultural shift. This has not been our approach at St. Andrew’s nor will it be our approach. We believe that even in these challenging times the offer of the Lord Jesus has not grown weary, neither has the Gospel lost its power. In fact, we believe that this is our kairos moment, our moment of divinely given opportunity.

For the better part of the last decade the leadership of St. Andrew’s has been studying and praying about how we grow the kingdom – how we best connect people to the presence and power of Jesus Christ. We gathered data. We explored options. We listened to the thoughts of many folks inside and outside St. Andrew’s. All the while our ministries were expanding and our impact was growing. The culmination of this process was the decision to launch a capital campaign, planning for the next 25 years of mission and ministry. We are calling our campaign, Imagine 2040.

Today, I want to update you on our status.

Where We Are

Over the past the past few months we have laid the foundation of the campaign by:

  • Presenting our vision for St. Andrew’s for the next 25 years. You can listen to that sermon here.
  • Developing (and continuing to develop) videos highlighting the breadth and depth of ministry offerings that have shaped our church and equipped our members to live the Christian life. It is through our ministry growth and expansion that we will further our mission and grow the kingdom.
  • Establishing a leadership team to direct and oversee our work. This leadership team is comprised of people from across the spectrum of St. Andrew’s.
  • We have secured Beau Clowney Architects and Building God’s Way as our architects.
  • We have secured Fred Reinhard as our Owner’s Representative.
  • We have secured Hill Construction as our contractor.
  • We have secured Thomas & Hutton as our civil engineers.
  • We have secured Dale Watson as our design illustrator.
  • We have designated Lewis Middleton as the contact person for the Imagine 2040 You may contact him at any time for an up-to-date status report.
  • We have held an informational meeting for all of the previous Senior Wardens of our Vestry to cast the vision and seek their input and garner their support.
  • We have held an informational meeting for our LifeGroup leaders to both present our ideas and solicit their input and support.
  • We have held neighborhood meetings for our immediate neighbors whose lives will be directly impacted by our building project.
  • We have appeared before the Mt. Pleasant Board of Zoning Appeals to present our conceptual plan and to gain the variances needed to proceed.
  • We have had an initial meeting with the Old Village Historic District Commission to present our conceptual plan and solicit their input.

What’s Next?

  • We will appear before the Old Village Historic District Commission for their approval in August.
  • Working with our architects we will develop construction documents for our project.
  • With the plans and documents completed and approved we will be able to formally kick off Imagine 2040 this fall and present to you the full scope of the project and invite your participation.
  • We will continue to keep you informed with a campaign newsletter.
  • We will establish a website dedicated to the ongoing campaign providing you regular updates of our project.

What Can You Do?

You will continue to hear more details about our plans to meet our calling over the coming months. What I want you to take away is that our efforts are ultimately focused on growing the kingdom – about deepening faith, about equipping people to be a witness wherever they are called – whether that’s their neighborhood, their workplace, in a church plant, or an international mission field.

Please pray about your part in this project that will have global impact. I invite you see this moment of divine opportunity and to put your hand to the plough with other members of this church and labor in Christ’s harvest field. This is our time to rise to the challenge of sowing the seed of the Kingdom of God in our community and the world.

To God alone be the glory,

+Steve

 

Sam Storms is the St. Andrew’s New Wine speaker this August 25th – 27th.  Great teacher.  Good man.  Sign up, you will be blessed.

Here’s a recent sermon he preached on the topic, Jesus the Healer (notes available here).

Text: James 5.13-18; Matthew 21.12-17

Preached: February 7, 2016

Location: Bridgeway Church, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Sam Storms is lead pastor for preaching and vision at Bridgeway Church in Oklahoma City. He is a TGC Council member and the author of many books, including Packer on the Christian Life and Pleasures Evermore. He serves as president-elect of the Evangelical Theological Society.

St. Andrew’s Medical Clinic was founded in 1983 and has operated very quietly in space under Sams Hall. Anthony Kowbeidu, Associate Pastor of St. Andrew’s, and Dr. Ed O’Bryan, Medical Clinic Director, talk about the work of the clinic.

Palmetto Medical Initiative

February 17, 2016

Matt Alexander, co-founder and CEO of Palmetto Medical Initiative (PMI), one of St. Andrew’s missions partners, speaks about the beginnings and the work of PMI. (This is a longer version of what was shown in services at St. Andrew’s on February 14.)

The Opportunities at Alpha

September 9, 2015

Dear Friends,

I write you with an amazing two-fold opportunity.

Beginning Monday, September 14, we will kick-off The Alpha Course at St. Andrew’s. Over the past 20 years 5000+ people have participated in an Alpha Course at St. Andrew’s. And, as Alpha is a global phenomenon, over 15,000,000 people have participated in the course from every country and culture on the face of the planet. It has been a primary means by which the Spirit has grown and deepened our relationships with God and with one another here at St. Andrew’s.

What happens on The Alpha Course?

The Guardian newspaper wrote, “What Alpha offers, and what is attracting thousands of people, is permission, rare in secular culture, to discuss the big questions – life and death and their meaning.”

Bob Buford, of Leadership Network, says, “Most of us skip bases in developing our faith, leaving us plagued with unanswered questions. Alpha fills the gaps. Alpha fosters spiritual peace and stability.”

Over a 9-week period you will have the opportunity to explore the foundational teachings of Jesus Christ and to ask your questions of faith and spirituality. Unlike “programs” which simply seek to present a body of information, Alpha is geared toward the development of relationships – you relationship with God and with other people who are asking the same kinds of questions that you are asking.

Each night begins with a dinner, a talk (this year’s speakers are Rob Sturdy, Todd Simonis and me) on a topic like:

  • Why did Jesus die?
  • How does God guide us?
  • How do we deal with the problem of evil and suffering?
  • Does God heal today?

You will then have an opportunity to meet in small groups for discussion – discovering with others the joy and security of a living faith grounded in Christ.

The Opportunities

Back to my initial statement: you have an amazing two-fold opportunity before you.

First, God means for you to be sure of your faith in Christ. Sure that it has relevancy for today, sure that He is with you, and sure that your faith in Christ will see you through this life. One of the saddest things I’ve seen as a priest/bishop are folks who gave insufficient attention to their spiritual health and then were surprised when trials and suffering befall them and their faith faltered. If you would like to register for the Alpha course visit AlphaCharleston.com.

Secondly, over the past decade we have asked our new members why/how they came to St. Andrew’s. 80% of them said it was because a family member, friend, work colleague, or neighbor invited them to come to St. Andrew’s. 80%!

God has placed into your hands the privilege and responsibility of sharing the Gospel message. The Apostle Paul wrote in Romans 10: “How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? And how are they to preach unless they are sent?” Quite literally, you are the one sent – sent to your families, sent to your colleagues and classmates, sent into the community to announce that God, in Christ, has come. And, what I want to do is to partner with you to reach your family and friends with the good news of Jesus Christ – you invite and we’ll present.

So, will you join me? Will you join me Monday night, September 14, as we together explore how our faith in Christ might deepen? Will you extend the wonderful, biblical, grace-filled invitation to “come and see” to the people in your world who are disconnected from Christ?

Together for the Kingdom,

Steve

Learn more about what others have said about Alpha

If you have something to do with communications in your church, this might be for you. The workshop is for church staffs, pastors, church planters, and volunteers. The guest speaker is St. Andrew’s Communications Director, Greg Shore.

Zero Budget/Zero Time Church Communications

HOW TO ESTABLISH AND MAINTAIN A WEB PRESENCE WHEN RESOURCES ARE LOW

During the morning session Greg Shore, Director of Communications for ACNA parish, St. Andrew’s ~ Mt. Pleasant, will look at social media – Facebook, Twitter and Instagram – and hear not only why we should be using it, but when and how.

We’ll reconvene after lunch to have David Childs, Director of Communications for Church of our Saviour, John Island, show us how to create a low-cost website using Wix as well as a brief foray into other current programming options.

There will be plenty of time for conversations, questions, and answers.

To register visit the Diocese of South Carolina’s website.

About Greg Shore

Greg-Shore_200-pxGreg’s job responsibilities started 18 years ago at St. Andrew’s ~ Mt. Pleasant with producing two service bulletins for three services and a weekly newsletter along with producing occasional advertising and collateral pieces. The job has grown and he now produces or oversees the production of all visual communications at St. Andrew’s and the Diocese of the Carolinas which includes weekly materials for 11 services in four locations, six websites, multiple social media outlets, video production, printed and online advertising, press relations, and live streaming operations for a weekly theology class and occasional worship service. He attends St. Andrew’s church plant in North Charleston where he serves as a LifeGroup Leader. In his spare time he bikes, runs, and coaches other runners. Greg lives in North Charleston with his three cats: Burley, Kowbeidu, and Woody.

An exhortation from the clergy of St. Andrew’s Church, Mount Pleasant; Park Circle, North Charleston; Goose Creek; and City Church, Charleston – preached on all campuses this morning: 

“In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world” (John 16.33)

On Sept 15, 1963 a bomb was detonated inside an Alabama church killing four little girls. One bystander was reported to have cried out, “My God, you’re not even safe in church!” And though the words were uttered over fifty years ago, the anguished cry of that particular bystander could have, and very likely was uttered in the hearts of many a man, woman, and child as we collectively came to terms with the terror done in downtown Charleston. “My God,” you might have said, “you’re not even safe in church.” And you’re right. Terrible, senseless evil can happen even in church. But dear friends, we must admit, some churches are less safe than others.

A church was bombed in Birmingham on Sept 15, 1963. But it wasn’t just any church that was bombed. It was a black church that was bombed. Segregated churches seem like something that should be a legacy of the past but sadly they are not. Here in North America Christian people of all races have failed to fully realize the words of the Apostle Paul when he wrote to the Ephesian Christians:

Christ himself is our peace, who has made us both one and has broken down in his flesh the dividing wall of hostility . . . that he might create in himself one new man in place of the two, so making peace, and might reconcile us both to God through the cross thereby killing the hostility.

Through some spiritual defect, and deep indwelling sin, our sad racial divisions are every bit as evident this Sunday morning as they were five decades ago. Because we have failed to come together, we cannot simply say a Christian church was terrorized last Wednesday night, but a black Christian church. And this is surely cause for prayer, confession, and repentance before God our and neighbor.

There is something else we must bring up, if we are to be honest before God and before our neighbor. Fifty years ago – within the living memory of many of us gathered this morning – black people were terrorized throughout this country. This was particularly true in the South. Many of us would like to believe that such bigoted violence is some relic of the past, but surely the events of the past year have shown this not to be the case. And in case anyone remains unconvinced, it wasn’t five decades ago, but five days ago, that a young white man wandered into a black church because, and I quote, he “wanted to shoot black people.”

Of the victims of the bombing of the 16th Street Church in Birmingham, Martin Luther King Jr. simply said: “They died between the sacred walls of the church of God. And they were discussing the eternal meaning of love.” Surely we could say the same of our neighbors who were murdered last Wednesday night at Emanuel AME Church. And we could say the same of us, that we are here between the sacred walls of the church of God, discussing the eternal meaning of love.

And yet there is at least one difference. We are alive. Not only are we alive, but as a predominantly white church, we have (most likely) never known the terror of predominantly black churches such as Johnson Grove Baptist TN, or Mt. Zion AME SC, or Little Mt. Zion Church in AL, or Cypress Grove Baptist Church in LA, or St. Paul CME in MS, and countless other predominantly black churches which were victims of violent, racist attacks within the past fifteen years. “My God,” you might say, “you’re not even safe in church.” And you’re right. Terrible, senseless evil can happen even in church. But friends, some churches are less safe than others.

Here we are, discussing as King so eloquently put it the “eternal meaning of love,” and we must ask: What does love require of us? Or to put it more pointedly, what debt of love do we owe to our blood bought brothers and sisters in Christ and neighbors made in God’s own image who are vulnerable and still subject to much violence and systemic oppression? What do we owe our “less safe” brothers and sisters? To put it quite simply, friends, what will you and I do about this? I would ask each and every member of St. Andrew’s, in Goose Creek, North Charleston, City Church, and Mount Pleasant to bring this very question before the Lord.

And while we wait for His guidance there are nevertheless things that may be done.

We will pray.

We will certainly do this. We will pray today for our city, for our churches, and especially for those of us most vulnerable. And I would ask you to be mindful of opportunities to pray with the broader Christian community in Charleston – and I respectfully ask for your humble and reverent participation in prayer vigils as they are announced and shared on social media.

We will repent.

Surely each of us has things that we must repent of in regards to such matters. Some must repent of racism. Some must repent of cowardice. Some must repent of ambivalence, but each of us must repent. And I humbly ask each of you to come before the Lord and do business with Him that you may receive grace and healing.

We will help.

We will begin helping today by giving. The immediate request before the Charleston community is for financial assistance for the families of those killed. Our cash offering this morning will be donated in full to the Mother Emmanuel Hope fund, a fund established to offer support to the families victimized by this tragic evil. If you were not prepared this morning to give we will accept your offerings through the week and we will pass them on to the Mother Emmanuel Hope Fund.

Beyond this, we will seek the guidance of our African American brothers and sisters in our own congregations, as well as African American church leadership in our community. We will seek their guidance on how they believe we may best stand with them in the coming days in response to this evil. And I believe it is important that we learn to stand with this community on other issues where African Americans are unfairly made vulnerable and victimized by unjust structures. I humbly ask for your prayers, your wisdom, your ideas, and your support as we seek to understand how best to do this and when the time comes, I humbly ask for your support and action.

Finally, and most importantly, we will lift up Him who died for us, Jesus Christ the Son of God. The Apostle Paul reminds us that it is only the Gospel that is the power of God unto salvation. We will continue to clearly present the Gospel in our churches, setting forth the power of God that delivers human beings from the bondage of sin, hate and hostility and reconciles them back to God and their neighbors. This Gospel, the power of God, has been at work not only changing the eternal fabric of heaven but also the temporal fabric of earth.

Unthinkable progress has been made towards racial reconciliation in the past half century done in no small part to the power of the Gospel at work in the Christian church. The national media reporting on the citizens of Charleston’s response reflect the fruit of the Gospel on display in our city’s life. The Wall Street Journal ran an editorial entitled, “A Bow to Charleston.” A Philadelphia paper’s headline simply read, “The Grace Card.” We have come far and we have made progress. Last Wednesday is surely a devastating setback. But setbacks, even devastating ones, ought not deter God’s people. As Dr. King also said:

There is something at the very center of our faith which reminds us that Good Friday may reign for a day, but ultimately it must give way to the triumphant beat of the Easter drums.

Brothers and Sisters in the Lord, I ask you to take heart, to have faith, to muster up your courage, to preach the Gospel, to lend a hand, and do not be discouraged. In this world, we will certainly have tribulation. But Christ has overcome the world. And with this hope, we boldly prepare to serve Him in these days in which He has called us.

Amen

 

What is Holy Communion? Why is it important? At what age should your child participate?

  • Sunday, May 3
  • 10:15 am 
  • Located in the Chapel

This is an opportunity for you and your child (1st grade and older) to learn more about Holy Communion and the traditions at St. Andrew’s. Help your child prepare to receive Communion for the first time or to grow in his understanding of Communion anytime. This interactive class is designed for kids and their parents to do together.

Contact Katie Arndt (Call 843.284.4329 or KArndt@WeAreStAndrews.com) for more information or if you have any questions.

A Conversation on Race

and Mission Among African Americans

April 27-28, 2015

 

A Collect for the Human Family: O God, you made us in your own image and redeemed us through Jesus your Son: Look with compassion on the whole human family; take away the arrogance and hatred which infect our hearts; break down the walls that separate us; unite us in bonds of love; and work through our struggle and confusion to accomplish your purposes on earth; that, in your good time, all nations and races may serve you in harmony around your heavenly throne; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Ephesians 2:19-22 So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone, in whom the whole structure, being joined together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord. In him you also are being built together into a dwelling place for God by the Spirit.

Revelation 7:9-10 I looked, and behold, a great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands, and crying out with a loud voice,“Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!”

 

raceandmissionFrom Ferguson to North Charleston to Baltimore

In November of this past year, the unrest in Ferguson, Missouri became a further catalyst for our ongoing conversations about race across the United States and within the Anglican Church in North America. In response, Archbishop Foley Beach called together leaders from around the Church to discuss issues of race, systemic injustice, and our mission to reach all of North America with the transforming love of Jesus Christ. We recognize that this must include a deeper level of engagement with and among our African American communities.

In January, Bishop Alphonza Gadsden of the predominantly African-American Diocese of the Southeast (REC), graciously offered to host this dialogue at one of his parishes, New Bethel Reformed Episcopal Church (ACNA) in North Charleston, South Carolina.

At that time, we never could have anticipated the way North Charleston would become a part of the national conversation, nor could we have known that the unrest in Baltimore would unfold during the days of our gathering. The leaders of one of our newest church plants, Church of the Apostles in the City, Baltimore, MD were with us for this dialogue. Throughout the day their cell phones rang with first hand accounts from family members who were the victims of this violence. These are real people in our parishes, and we grieve together.

We had the opportunity to join them in prayer, interceding for the safety of the police officers, the citizens of Baltimore, and the perpetrators of violence. We have been encouraged by the witness of Baltimore’s clergy who took to the streets in an effort to end the violence that was destroying their communities.

There are no easy answers to the issues that plague our communities, but the spirit of unity that was in our midst this week testifies to the hope that we have through the cross of Christ, which reconciles us to God and one another.

Towards A More Diverse and Unified Future

We began with a frank assessment of the current challenges facing the Anglican Church in North America in our mission with and among African Americans. The Book of Revelation gives us the multiethnic vision of the Church in which members of every nation, tribe, people, and language offer up their unified praise before the Lamb (Rev. 7:9-10).

This biblical vision leads us to affirm a deeper commitment to both multiethnic and ethnic-specific expressions of the Church; a change that is critical if we are to remain in step with the Holy Spirit in light of the shifting demographics of North America.

Multiethnic ministry continues to expand within our Church. This emphasis includes Bishop Leung of Vancouver whose pioneering work in Asian and Multicultural Ministries in Canada (AMMiC) has now spread to the United States. Caminemos Juntos is a vibrant network of members committed to the growth of Hispanic congregations in North America. This week we have taken the first steps in addressing as a Province, the need for the intentional inclusion and growth of the African American community in our midst.

The Challenge Today

Few conversations are as timely and important to our life as a Province, and so while our hearts have been grappling with the tragedy of the present, our eyes are looking to the future.

To this end we:

  1. Ask each congregation to pray and work for racial reconciliation in their community,
  1. Intend to develop a Provincial team to lead our multiethnic ministries and we encourage the development of regional networks to support those who are called to multiethnic church planting, evangelism, and discipleship,
  1. Invite dioceses and parishes to consider how they might actively develop more effective multiethnic leadership pipelines,
  1. Invite dioceses and parishes to make a financial commitment to supporting multiethnic leadership.

Talk alone will not bridge the gap or bind us together, but if we are to move forward, action must be preceded by honest dialogue. Talk is not cheap. Risking these conversations in our present culture is costly. We invite all who love the Lord Jesus Christ to join us in moving the conversations in our communities forward, so that together, having cleared a foundation, we can build a common future that brings glory to God.

 

A Collect for Peace (prayed during the violence that unfolded in Baltimore, Monday, April 27, 2015) O God, the source of all holy desires, all good counsels, and all just works: Give to your servants that peace which the world cannot give, that our hearts may be set to obey your commandments, and that we, being defended from the fear of our enemies, may pass our time in rest and quietness, through the merits of Jesus Christ our Savior. Amen.

A Collect for Mission (prayed during Morning Prayer, Tuesday, April 28, 2015) O God, you have made of one blood all the peoples of the earth, and sent your blessed Son to preach peace to those who are far off and to those who are near: Grant that people everywhere may seek after you and find you; bring the nations into your fold; pour out your Spirit upon all flesh; and hasten the coming of your kingdom; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

 

The Most Rev. Dr. Foley Beach
Archbishop and Primate

The Rt. Rev. Alphonza Gadsden
Bishop, Diocese of the Southeast (REC)

Rev. Jay Baylor
Church of the Apostles in the City, Baltimore, MD

The Rev. Taylor Bodoh
Incarnation Tallahassee, FL

Mrs. Linda G. Butler
Grace Reformed Moncks Corner, SC

Mr. Ron Davis,
All Saints, Woodbridge, VA

Mrs. Rose-Marie Edwards-Tasker
Intercessor, Anglican Church in North America

Mr. Kevin Gadsden
New Israel Reformed Episcopal Church, Charleston, SC

The Rev. Canon Andrew Gross
Canon for Communications and Media Relations

The Rt. Rev. John Guernsey
Bishop, Diocese of the Mid-Atlantic
Dean of Provincial Affairs

The Rev. David Hanke
Restoration Anglican Church, Arlington, VA

The Rev. Christopher Jones
Incarnation Tallahassee, FL

The Rt. Rev. Mark Lawrence
Bishop, Diocese of South Carolina

Mr. Peter Lebhar
InterVarsity Christian Fellowship, Tallahassee, FL

The Ven. Canon Dr. Jack Lumanog
Archbishop’s Canon & COO

The Rev. Esau McCaulley
PhD Candidate, St. Andrew’s University, Scotland

Mr. Drew Miller,
St. Andrew’s City Church, Charleston, SC

The Rt. Rev. William White
Bishop, Diocese of the Southeast (REC)

The Rt. Rev. Steve Wood
Bishop, Diocese of the Carolinas

Ms. Carletta Wright
Church of the Apostles in the City, Baltimore, MD

Excellent article from Anglican Mainstream:

In contrast (to the CofE), what the Anglican Church in North America is doing, and what GAFCON is doing,  is centripetal. Not flinging things outwards.  But drawing things in to the centre. Like dust being drawn up into a tornado.

But what is that centre? Is it a particular person’s version of the faith? Is it the personality of one Archbishop? Is it the the narrow agenda of a particular group of Archbishops, as many in the liberal media would want to portray it ?

No. What is at the centre is the Bible: the Bible as authoritative for all faith and conduct; the Bible as its own interpreter, rather than being read through the spectacles of super elevated human reason and contemporary secular culture.

In addition,  the Anglican 39 Articles of religion are being reasserted as being at the centre:  it is those Articles that makes us specifically Anglican Christians rather than Baptist or Pentecostal or Presbyterian Christians.

The Bible and the 39 Articles of Religion (and the Anglican liturgy based upon the Book of Common Prayer) is what unites us as Anglicans. And so if we want to be Anglican, and properly Anglican, and recover Anglicanism, we need to get back to that centre.

And like the spokes on a bicycle wheel come closer to one another, the closer they get to the hub, so Anglicans are drawn closer to each other, the closer we come back to the historic core of our faith.

Read the rest.