Weekly Word from Pastor Curry: September 3, 2021

Greetings, Friendship Family!

Here we are in the month of September 2021, and we trust and pray you find encouragement in the fact the Lord has made a way.

The legendary Rev. Dr. Thomas A. Dorsey, gospel music royalty, in 1943 wrote the words to this song:
V1. Like a ship that’s toss’d and driven, Battered by an angry sea. When the storms of life are raging And their fury falls on me, 
I wonder what I have done That makes this race so hard to run, 
Then I say to my soul, take courage, The Lord will make a way somehow.

V2. Try to do my best in service. Try to live the best I can,
When I choose to do the right thing, Evil’s present on every hand,
I look up and wonder why  That good fortune pass me by, 
Then I say to my soul, be patient, The Lord will make a way somehow.

Chorus: The Lord will make a way some-how, When beneath the cross I bow, He will take away each sorrow, Let him have your burdens now; 
When the load bears down so heavy, 
The weight is shown upon my brow, 
There’s a sweet relief in knowing, 
O The Lord will make a way somehow.
Well, Pastor asked me to stand in for him this week with our weekly update.

Before I update you with what he left for me to say, I would like to let you know two things.

First, this Sunday, September 5th, is our Pastor’s Birthday and he will be back with us in church for worship.

We have planned a little something-something to celebrate his birthday and you are invited…

This is your opportunity to return to church and re-engage!  You have a reason to celebrate this month; God brought you through, God made a way for you in every situation you faced!  Also, celebrate our Pastor’s Birthday, bring a card or gift if you want, most of all be his special guest this Sunday your presence will be greatly appreciated.

Also, on the last Sunday of the month, the fourth Sunday, September 26th, we will celebrate our Pastor’s 8th (new beginning) Pastoral Anniversary serving here at Friendship.
It’s a Month of Celebration!

We will celebrate like we usually do, and again, you are invited to join us. 

On Sunday, September 26th, at our 8 am and 11:30 am services; our speaker is the Rev. Dr. Karen E. Curry-Stewart, the Director of Evangelism and Discipleship at First Institutional Baptist Church in Phoenix, AZ.

Our theme is Celebrating Strong & Courageous Leadership in Unprecedented Times

Based on Joshua 1:9, which states, “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”

We will have a refreshment hour during Ex-Hour on Sunday, September 26th, from 9:45am to 11:15 am. Ex-Hour will be canceled on that Sunday for both in-person and online classes.

We ask that you consider joining us to acknowledge our Pastor with a monetary gift and your participation in the day’s festivities.

If you choose to give a monetary gift, please use the Pastor’s Appreciation Day envelope provided beginning this Sunday. 

Now, we don’t want anything jingling in these envelopes. But we pray that you would consider giving a $10 gift, a $20 gift, a $100 or even $1,000 gift; whatever the Lord places on your heart, we want to show our pastor love monetarily. If you give online, please be sure to choose Pastor’s Anniversary from the drop-down menu to ensure the gift is appropriately credited.

We pray that you will join us in celebrating, encouraging, lifting, and admonishing our Pastor for his excellent service to the Friendship church over these last seven years.
Here are this week’s updates...  

FAMILY PRAYER SERVICE: Today, September 3rd, would be our Friday to have our Monthly Family Prayer Service via Google Meet. Since it is Labor Day Weekend and we know people travel or have weekend plans, we will not have the Family Prayer Service. However, we ask you to set aside some time and whisper a prayer for your church family, your pastor, and our worship services on the first Sunday, September 5th. This month’s prayer focus is Faith Forward Trusting the All-Sufficient Christ.

SUNDAY WORSHIP: We are doing everything we can to keep you safe and encouraged doing this season. Unless we are forced to, we will continue to meet in person and online. However you choose to join us, please join us! We still have Ex-Hour for our in-person worshipers and our online participants.  

Besides Sunday being our Pastor’s Birthday, It is First Sunday.
So please do not forget it is a communion Sunday. For those joining us for in-person worship, we will have communion for you. If you worship from home, we want to encourage you to gather your communion elements for worship on Sunday. For more information on how to prepare yourself for Communion virtually, please go HERE. We’ve been doing this for over a year now, I know you’ve got it down.

Monday, September 6th, is Labor Day, and the church offices will be closed. 
The offices will reopen on Tuesday, September 7th! Pastor won’t be in the office though, Give him a minute to recuperate!
New Classes

Hermeneutics: New study series starts on Saturday, September 11th
  • This 10-week class teaches the art of rightly dividing the word of truth and clarifying inaccurate interpretations & application of the Scriptures. Teacher: Rev. Patrick Christian

Precept Upon Precept: New Study starts on Tuesday, September 14th at 10 a.m.
  • This 12-week series will focus on the book of Hosea, and emphasizes, ‘A Love That Won’t Let Me Go.’ Teacher: Sis. Joyce Jackson

Wednesday Night Women’s Bible Study: New Study starts on Wednesday, September 15th at 7:30 p.m.
  • All ladies are invited and encouraged to join us for a new study based on the book titled, ‘Having a Mary Spirit: Allowing God to Change Us From the Inside Out.”  This study explores the "Holy Makeover" God wants to give each one of us. Dealing with topics such as disciplining our minds, guarding our hearts, and managing our thought lives, ladies will be encouraged to direct your gaze past your own shortcomings to the God who stands ready, willing, and able to make you into new women-from the inside out. Teachers: Rev. Belinda Wright & Rev. Fredia Travis
Singles Class: New study starts on Thursday, September 16th at 7:00 p.m.
  • Are you tired of going through the motions of faith? Do you want to make real progress in your life, but not know where to start? If you want to grow spiritually and help others grow as well, join us for this new study based on the book How to Grow: Applying the Gospel to All of Your Life by Daryl Dash. We’ll unpack the gospel, show how it applies to every area of your life, and help you evaluate your current stage of growth, so you’ll know what steps to take next. You’ll learn why habits are important, how to build them, and which ones to focus on first. How to Grow offers actionable ideas to facilitate spiritual growth in the lives of regular, messy people—people like you and me. Teachers: Allen Gobert & Elona Brown

All classes will be held virtually, and books will be available for pick up shortly in the church office. To register for any of these classes, please visit the church website. We hope you’ll join us for one of our new studies. Let’s learn and grow together in God’s Word!

SCHOLARSHIP MINISTRY 2021-2022: We are excited to announce the open enrollment for our Scholarship Ministry beginning today through October 4th! We are now accepting applications for students to join for this academic year. The scholarship ministry is available for all students K-12th. Our scholarship ministry is designed to nurture Friendship’s students to be the best scholars and be a meaningful part of our faith community that we believe is a catalyst for faithful ministry and service. Potential applicants and their families can find the application on our website.  Please go to to access the application.  We need all new and returning students to complete the online application.  More information about our “Virtual Kick-Off Meeting” in early October will be coming soon. If you have any questions, please email Rev. Jaron Singley at [email protected].  

REMEMBERING OUR LOST LOVED ONES: Looking ahead, We will have our 2021 Remembering Our Lost Loved Ones Service on Tuesday, October 19th, here at Friendship in the Sanctuary. Yes, we are planning an in-person event that will also stream live. If you would like to remember your loved one in this service, please send their name, relationship to you, and photo to Leigha Carrington in Membership Services at [email protected].  Especially note if your loved one passed away in 2020. You can submit via email or regular mail. The last day to submit this information is Friday, September 24th.

REVIVAL 2021 CANCELLED: Please note, will NOT have a revival in September. Pastor Curry needs a minute to do more ministry planning. I am considering an event in November to replace Revival entitled “Thankful Thursdays.” I will let you know more in the future!

Here are some things I don’t want you to forget…

  • CHILDREN’S MINISTRY VIDEO: Remember there’s a weekly Children’s Ministry Worship Video designed to keep our children connected, encouraged, and worshipping! Rev. Jaron Singley works hard weekly to produce a Children’s worship video. It is available through our website HERE or via the Friendship Youtube Channel HERE

  • VOLUNTEER CORE: We STILL need volunteers and would love to have you join our volunteer core. We expressly and immediately need volunteers for our Sunday Worship Hospitality Team. We need individuals to help us welcome members and guests on Sundays and various other hospitality-related tasks. If you are willing, please email [email protected].  Also, there is a table in the QUAD you can stop by on Sundays.  I appreciate your consideration in this.

  • INTERNS NEEDED: We also need interns in our media ministry. So if you are a student who needs an internship opportunity, we welcome you to be a part of the Media Ministry here at Friendship! To apply for a non-paid intern position, please email Candace Clark at [email protected].  

  • I want to thank those who have answered my appeal for individuals to participate in my research project on sermon-based small groups. 
  • I still need more individuals to commit to meeting for 8-10 weeks to discuss the Sunday Sermon and its application to our lives. The goal is to have 40-60 individuals participate. 
  • I would love to have one in-home group, two groups on campus, and one or two groups via zoom. If any of these group options appeal to you and you are willing to participate, would you please follow the links and sign up? 
  • Also, if you have signed up and would like to modify your sign-up option, you may follow the links and do that as well.
  • If you are interested and willing, please sign up HERE. The small groups will commence after Labor Day. Thank you in advance for your help with this.

General Church things to remember:
  • IN-PERSON EX-HOUR: In-person Ex-Hour meets each Sunday from 10 am to 11 am each Sunday in the Multipurpose Building. We invite you to stay after the first service or come earlier for the second service to attend Ex Hour in person. 

  • EX HOUR: Virtual Ex-Hour meets weekly on Sundays via ZOOM. Join us for class at 10a via this link HERE

  • YOUTH EX HOUR: Our youth Ex Hour takes place during our designated EX Hour time via Google Meet and in-person. Yes, it’s a hybrid approach! 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

  • 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 a bag of groceries.  The Food Bank’s hours of operation are Tuesday - Thursday 2:30p-4:30p.   

  • COVID Recovery Kits:
    We still have Covid Recovery Kits through Providence Health and the Yorba Linda Rotary Club. These kits help individuals who have been diagnosed with Covid-19 and are recovering at home. Each kit includes a pulse oximeter to monitor breathing, a thermometer, a box of masks, and a package of sanitizing wipes in a small canvas bag. If you or someone in your family could benefit from one of these kits, please call the church office and arrange to get one. 

  • 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.

Well, that’s all I have this week! Thank you for reading!  Thank you for your prayers and support! Continue to Stay Safe, Stay Healthy, Stay Connected  - God loves you, and so do I!

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