First Presbyterian Church of Holland Patent N.Y.
Preschool through grade 8
Christian Education for Families
"Calling together the Twelve, Yeshua gave them power and authority to expel all the demons and to cure diseases; and he sent them out to proclaim the Kingdom of God and to heal."
Luke 9:1-2 (Complete Jewish Bible translation)
I wonder what it might mean to "proclaim the 'Kingdom of God,'" and why anyone might want to do such a thing.
In Luke's account of this commissioning of the disciples, they have been his followers long enough to have listened to his teaching and to have seen him in action for a while. They have learned that Jesus' (Yeshua's) vision of how things ought to be is quite different from the ordinary status quo of society at large. In the verses that follow we learn that the Twelve accepted this commissioning and went right out and tried their hands at preaching and healing.
As we look at the political, financial and social problems in today's world, it appears that the "Kingdoms of This World" have messed things up pretty royally. Matthew's Gospel has the disciples sent to proclaim that: "the Kingdom of God is near." Near, as in our hearts and minds; as in a parallel universe that is so close we could reach out and touch it if only we would. Jesus gave his disciples the power and authority to proclaim the Kingdom, and to actually do something to implement it.
Those first twelve accepted the challenge, as did the heroic leaders of the New Testament church; as had the great prophets of the Old Testament; as have countless spiritual leaders over the past two millennia. Christ is still commissioning his followers to go out and make a difference. Will we accept his challenge?
"Gail Putnam with with her Sunday School class sharing in the Passover Seder"
The purpose of Passover for the Jewish/Hebrew people is to remember and to celebrate their freedom from the bondage of slavery in Egypt. The special meal served during Passover is called Seder. The story of the escape from Egypt is re-told and symbolic foods are eaten. This is the meal that Jesus shared with His disciples before He was betrayed by Judas Iscariot and taken prisoner, then crucified. Today, we call the event "The Last Supper." Our celebration of Communion comes from this special Jewish celebration---the Seder.
Two Sunday school classes gathered on Palm Sunday during the Sunday school hour to re-create the Seder---Gail Putnam's/Carol Heburn's and Heidi Taubert's/Jolie Nourse's. The children wore costumes (from our Christmas Pageant collection) to help create the proper 'atmosphere' for Seder. Rev. Susan participated by washing the children's hands to represent Jesus washing His disciples' feet.
Sunday School Volunteers
Christian Education Chair: Catherine Vannicola
Pre-K: Betsy Allen
Grades K-1-2: Jolie Nourse & Heidi Taubert
Grades 3-4-5: Gail Putnam & Carol Heburn
Grades 6-7-8: Carol Beasley & Sarah Beasley