WS Update: Don’t be afraid

July 25, 2022

Reading and listening to the news has become an exercise in courage as images and stories (local, national and global) create the sense that we are living in, to borrow WH Auden’s title, an Age of Anxiety. The last few years have exposed more vividly what has always been true, we are vulnerable to negative circumstances beyond our control. The story we reflected on yesterday (listen to the sermon here) was a reminder that in the midst of vulnerability it is possible to still be safe. The words Jesus spoke to a father who received the worst news possible (Your daughter has died) have been resting in my spiritual imagination: “Don’t be afraid; just believe” (Mark 5:36). Who would have the audacity to say such a thing to a grieving parent? Either a cruel human, or the loving God of creation. Jesus went on to raise the girl back to life, foreshadowing the future of those who trust Jesus more than their circumstances. But faith is hard as God’s timing is not contingent on our desires. But what is true on this Monday morning is that just as Jesus grabbed the little girl by the hand, he has yours as well.  

“I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die; 26and whoever lives by believing in me will never die. Do you believe this?

John 11:25-26

An ancient prayer for our most vulnerable state, sleep:
Lighten our darkness, we beseech thee, O Lord;
and by thy great mercy defend us from all perils and dangers of this night;
for the love of thy only Son, our Savior Jesus Christ.

Facilitators for support groups

On May 15, we had an Innovation Luncheon where congregants came together to brainstorm and submit ideas for new ministries. Many people suggested offering support groups at W83 and so we are now looking for congregants who would like to facilitate one this fall. Prior experience in facilitating safe and welcoming environments for sharing and support is ideal but not required.

Coming up

  • Tangled in Color | Art Exhibit, through Aug 28: “Tangled in Color” features works by ArTech Collective artists, this collection of drawings, embroidery and weavings will awaken your senses, evoke emotion, and help you escape the everyday. Through the artistic practice and the created pieces, the artists hope to share a fragment of their creative world as they tangle you up in this colorful journey.
  • Summer volunteers needed: Are you in NYC this summer? Whether you’re here on a summer internship or have been wanting to see what volunteering might look like, help our vacationing volunteers by joining a team, once a month, meet great people and help to serve your neighbors!
  • We are hiring: Do you know anyone who’d be a great fit at Redeemer? We are looking to fill several roles on our team before the end of the year. Check them out and spread the word!
  • Build your community: Every community has a mission, and every mission has a community behind it. So if you’re interested in building communities for following Jesus together and making an impact in our neighborhoods, please let us know. Community groups have always been a crucial part of Redeemer’s life together, all the more so when communities have been fragmented the last couple years.
    Redeemer West Side is aiming to start up to 5 new community groups this fall. We’re looking for hosts and leaders who are hospitable, can facilitate discussions, and help their group find ways to serve the city and each other. If you feel like that’s you, send an email to
  • What’s happening in our city with HFNY?: Stay up-to-date about how Hope for New York affiliate partners are continuing to love and care for neighbors across our city. Sign up for various updates, including prayers!
  • Become a Flourish Client Advocate with Avail: If you have a gift for listening, female volunteers are needed to support clients in developing and maintaining healthy relationships. Training is provided, but a one-year commitment (in person or virtual) is needed.