A year ago, we would never have imagined that 2015 would turn out the way it did. One year ago, we had three pastors working as a team to serve the needs of the Sunnyside Church and its community. We were planning for international mission trips and local outreach projects. We looked forward to a robust schedule of concerts and special events to enrich and inspire our members and community. We were just beginning to embark on our Millennial Matrix journey.
Some of our plans and dreams turned out wonderfully. VBS was a rousing success. Our concert series has been a blessing to many. Senior ministries have enriched the lives of many through meals and activities together. Many mission trips have been undertaken individually or collectively from Belize to Cuba to Zimbabwe to Ethiopia. Our Senior Pastor was stricken, and then recovered from a serious medical condition. One Associate Pastor moved on to broader ministry. We’ve lived together through an unprecedented pastoral transition.
We’ve experienced success and failure, hope and disappointment, fear and joy, happiness and sadness, loneliness and community. And through it all, God has been faithful.
As we look forward to 2016, we have renewed hopes and plans for a new year. We look forward to completing our pastoral team. We hope to hire a director of music ministries. We look forward to overseas missions and local missions. We look forward to experiencing great music, powerful community, richly spiritual worship experiences. We look forward to Vacation Bible School and First Friday. We look forward to expanding our partnerships with organizations like Adventist Medical Center and Sunnyside Symphony Orchestra to make a broader impact in East Portland.
As I look forward to this new year, the greatest strength and blessing of the Sunnyside Church is its people. Sunnysiders are people who are committed to Jesus and to each other. People who are willing to invest in this community to make a difference. People who know how to love and how to make others feel important. As God leads us, the strength of Sunnyside in the coming year will be people who are willing to be inspired by the Holy Spirit to press together and press forward as we work to fulfill God’s calling on our church family.
I’m so glad that you all are part of the Sunnyside journey. And I can’t wait to see what God has in store for 2016.
God bless you! And God bless Sunnyside as we continue to seek His will. Happy New Year!
News & Notes
Sabbath worship services are at 8:45 and 11:15 am. Pastor Jonathan Russell will be bringing us our Bible message entitled “The Inspired Life.”
7@7 Prayer Connection is an opportunity for Sunnyside family and friends to begin our spiritual new year on the right foot. Join us in the Fireside Room at 7:00 each morning this week (January 3-9) for connection and prayer time. Have a specific prayer request? Email Prayer@SunnysideAdventist.org. Can’t join in person? Download the Periscope app and follow @pastorjrussell. Don’t miss out on this opportunity to connect and grow.
First Friday at Adventist Medical Center’s Amphitheater will be on January 8, 7:00 pm. The Portland Adventist Academy Gospel Choir will be providing the music, and Nelson from The Nelson and Morgan show on FISH radio station will be presenting his testimony. All are welcome.
Family Resource Network thanks you for your gifts that have made it possible in recent months to help a number of families through difficult times. You may continue to contribute to account #9387. Special request: We have a family of four, with two children ages 3 and 4, who need everything for setting up a household. If you can help with anything, please contact Marie Pierre at 503-998-3754.
Sunnyside Youth, ages 15+, will be involved in a mission trip to Los Angeles during Spring Break, March 18-27. The Dream Center was founded twenty years ago with a compelling vision to impact all of Los Angeles by addressing people’s physical, material, and spiritual needs in unique and practical ways, The Dream Center has grown into a phenomenon that now reaches more than thirty thousand people each week through its multiple church services and more than two hundred need-centered ministries. We will be driving a bus to Los Angeles and some of the activities we may be involved in are: adopt-a-block, construction, discipleship, food bank, food truck, kitchen, His hands extended, kid’s ministry, family floor, and foster care intervention. Come prepared to share Jesus in practical ways. For further information and to register, contact Pastor Colby at Colby.Maier@SunnysideAdventist.org or call 503-334-8095.
ETHIOPIA 2016: Important Dates and Deadlines
* Wednesday, Dec. 23: Last day for significant participant discounts.
* Saturday, Jan. 9: Mission team meeting.
* Tuesday, Jan. 12: Last day for team member contributions and passport information.
* Tuesday, Feb. 10: Final day for ticketing.
* Sunday, Mar. 6: Mission team meeting and packing party.
* Wednesday, Mar 16: To Ethiopia!
Two quiet books have been lost. They were in a black Fred Meyer shopping bag. These quiet books were handmade and very important to the family. If you have seen them, or know where they could possibly be, please contact the office at 503-252-8080.
Portland Adventist Academy
PAA Day is coming up on February 2nd. All 8th grade students are invited to spend the day at Portland Adventist Academy experiencing all the school has to offer! It begins at 8:30 am with worship and tours of academic departments. Lunch is free and all students get a t-shirt. Parents should attend Parent Night at 6:00 pm to ask questions about scholarships, academics, spiritual opportunities, and more. All parents who attend Parent Night and all students who attend PAA Day will be entered into a drawing. We’re giving away two months of free tuition as well as application fee waivers. – but you must attend! Let us know you’re coming by calling 503.255.8372 x.0.
English students are dipping their toes in media writing:
How PAA’s climbing class can benefit students with a fear of heights: http://paasda.org/news/rock-climbing-club-and-class-benefits-students-afraid-of-heights/
Portland Adventist Elementary
Area Events and Announcements
January 24, 11:00 am, Reinette Boshoff and Lou Wildman invite you to share in the joy of their wedding here at Sunnyside. Please join them in the reception to follow for a light nuptial luncheon.
March 4-6: Women’s Ministries Leader’s Retreat.
Save the date! For more information email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Event Location: The Village Green Resort and Gardens, Cottage Grove.
July 25-28, 2016: Great Controversy Tours with Dr. Gerard Damsteegt of the Seminary, Andrews University. See the prophecies of Daniel and Revelation come alive. Visit Rome and the Reformation sites in the Waldensian Valleys, Switzerland, and Germany. These tours give you a new vision in how to inspire church members for Jesus’ coming and future challenges. A most exciting experience! Call 269-815-8624, or email email@example.com.