Weekly Word from Pastor Curry: December 4, 2020

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Hey there Friendship People,

It has been two weeks since I have provided an update. This is our longest stretch without communication to date. I trust and pray you had a great Thanksgiving Holiday despite the limitations and restrictions. I also pray you had the opportunity to view our Thanksgiving Day Service and were blessed by it. I am grateful for my team, which works tirelessly to help me deliver relevant ministry in these turbulent times.

Since our last update, the COVID Climate has become more severe, and there are more strenuous impending shutdowns and stay at home orders. Governor Newsom is calling for a limited stay-at-home order in some areas of the state if capacity in their ICU units falls below 15%.  The three-week order would require bars, wineries, personal services, hair salons, and barbershops to close temporarily, while some schools and critical infrastructure would remain open. Retail stores could operate at 20% capacity, and restaurants would only offer take-out and delivery. Every part of the state is expected to hit this threshold at some point in December.

Beloved, we must abide by science and medical advice. The current guidance is NOT to MIX households. This is why we have canceled this Sunday’s DRIVE-IN service. Just as an extra precaution. PLEASE, DO NOT MIX Households. Additionally, we have minimized our operations at the church. Most of our staff is working from home, including yours truly. Please bear with us as we work to keep you and the staff safe. We are in the process of forwarding the church phones and making sure all operations are still addressed promptly. Please do not just show up to the church, for your safety and ours. You will also notice that Ex Hour Teachers will no longer teach from the church; they will teach from their respective homes. Again, the guidance is not to mix homes/households. So we are following that guidance.

Here’s what I have for you this week! 

Thank you to everyone who participated in our #GIVINGTUESDAY event on Tuesday, December 1st, by giving a little extra help to support your church and our outreach ministries! You can still give via our church app or the church website ( and select GIVING TUESDAY, so your gift is accounted for correctly.

Tonight, please plan to join the Prayer Posse and me for our Monthly Prayer Meeting at 7:30pm via our Prayer Line on Google Meets. You can join the prayer meeting HERE.

Tomorrow, we will have our church-wide Stewardship Meeting at 10am via Zoom. Again, that’s tomorrow, December 5th, at 10am via zoom for all members. Leaders, your attendance is mandatory, but ALL members are invited to this church-wide business meeting. We will offer a year in review, cast vision for 2021, and discuss the 2021 budget. Join this Zoom Meeting HERE. Also, you can listen by dialing 1-408-638-0968 and entering the meeting code 92391090084#. Please note there will be visual aids shared, and dialing in will not allow you to see those visual presentations. When you join the meeting, please be sure to use your full name in your profile. This is a requirement for us to track attendance appropriately.

This Sunday is First Sunday. I want to remind you to have your communion elements ready for this Last First Sunday of the year. For more information on preparing your communion elements go HERE.

When I updated you on November 20th, I told you of the impending retirement of Sister Joyce Jackson, our Director of Christian Education and Discipleship. I told you her official retirement date is December 31st. I also told you that we would celebrate her in our service on December 13th! I made a mistake. On December  13th, we will celebrate the Silver Eagles for their 25th  Anniversary. We will honor Sister Joyce on Sunday, December 20th. We still want to invite you to submit a video of appreciation, support, or well wishes to Mrs. Jackson. Your video must be received by Monday, December 14th, to be included in our service on December 20th. Please email your video to [email protected]. Also, remember, record your video with your camera turned sideways (landscape).

As I close, I have some good news to share with you:

On Tuesday, December 1st, Letitia Clark, a long term member of Friendship, was appointed Mayor of the City of Tustin after winning re-election stunningly in November. Sister Clark has served as a City Council Member since 2016 and served as Mayor Pro Tem last year. Congratulations, Mayor Clark. We should also congratulate Mayor Clark on her recent marriage to Brother Zachary Bell, a Friendship member. I performed their marriage ceremony on Sunday, October 25th. It was a beautiful outdoor ceremony at Leoness Winery in Temecula, and I was happy to be a part. Congratulations Zachary & Leticia.

Also, I am pleased to announce the recent marriage of Angelica Reid, a staff member at Friendship, to Michael Holden. I married this beautiful couple on Saturday, November 21st, in a beautiful outdoor ceremony at the Reid Residence in Fullerton! Congratulations, Mr. & Mrs. Holden. Keep HOLDEN to LOVE! 😊

Before I close, we are in Advent Season! We kicked off Advent on this past Sunday, November 29th. The word “Advent” is derived from the Latin word adventus, meaning “coming,” a translation of the Greek word parousia. Thus, Advent celebrates with anticipation of the coming of Christ into the earth. Advent lasts for four Sundays leading up to Christmas. Our theme for Advent this year is God With Us! God with us brings HOPE, LOVE, JOY, & PEACE. I hope to see you online each Sunday of Advent. Please note that this year, we will stream a Christmas Eve Service at 7pm on Christmas Eve for the first time.

Things to remember:

  • Phone Line for Worship: For our members who may have a tough time connecting to our worship service online for whatever reason, we are now offering a way for those members to dial in and listen to service over the phone. To access the service via telephone, members and guests need to dial 1 216-930-8774 and enter the PIN: 464 267 559#. It is live for both the 8:00a and 11:30a worship services.

  • Our College and Career Prep Initiative (CCPI) has produced an excellent and comprehensive one-stop virtual academic and education assistance resource for parents and families of  K- through 12 and college-bound students. Click HERE to access our Google Classroom.  Feel free to share with others.

  • EX HOUR: Ex Hour meets weekly on Sundays, and we are studying Isaiah. This study will continue through the end of this month. Remember, EX Hour takes place every Sunday through the video conference app, ZOOM. Join us for class on Sundays at 10:15a via this link HERE. Also, there is a YOUTH EX HOUR: Our youth Ex Hour takes place during our designated EX Hour time via Google Meet. Parents, please encourage your students to join youth teachers for this biblically fun opportunity to learn God’s Word, connect with others, and grow. To join Youth Ex Hour, follow the link HERE

  • AT THE DOOR WITH THE CURRYS: Remember this virtual experience happens each worship service on Sundays. It is a time for Lady Karima and me to connect with you just like we would at church on Sunday. We will NOT be online this Sunday! 

  • WEDNESDAY Prayer Day: Join us each Wednesday for Prayer. We pray at 6:30a, 12p, and 6:30p. To connect with our prayer services, please follow this link HERE or dial in at +1 (413) 418-4274 and use the PIN 287683504#. 

  • FBC FOOD BANK OPEN: The FBC Food Bank is OPEN with a new drive-thru system where our clients will receive a pre-packaged food box and bag of groceries.  The Food Bank’s hours of operation are Tuesday - Thursday 2:30p-4:30p.   

  • COVID Membership Assistance Fund: We are STILL accepting applications for the COVID Membership Assistance Grant. If you are experiencing financial distress due to COVID19, we invite you to apply for one of our $500 assistance grants. The guidelines are available HERE, and the application is available HERE.

Also, we continue to support our members with small businesses. If you would like us to feature your small business, please contact Rev. Eric Archer at [email protected].

Beloved, we must continue to PRAY, not PANIC, take PRECAUTIONS, and be PATIENT as we continue through this problematic pandemic.

Friendship, I love you, but God loves you, BETTER!  Stay Safe, Stay Healthy, Stay Connected! 

In His Service,
Rev. Kenneth C. Curry, Jr.
Senior Pastor
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