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#SUMMER

It's been a wild one!
Check out what's happening with Community Church.

LAUNCH TEAM

First Launch Team meeting

Every great journey begins with a single step. On June 23rd, Nick and Joanne Torcivia opened up their home to host our first official Launch Team meeting. We had planned to meet in their living room, but quickly spilled out into their backyard. Allie and I (Lou) shared the vision for the church, our plans for the summer, and some of the values that will shape us as a church. More importantly though, that night, 45 members of our Launch Team began to dream and pray about all that this church could be, about the future of Babylon, and about our individual roles in God’s incredible story.

The night ended with a challenge to think about the people in our lives who have little interest in God or the church, the people who have been turned off by people of faith, the people who have yet to see how great God really is. It could be a coworker, a friend, a relative, a spouse, or even a child. What if they decided to give God one last chance? What if they worked up the courage to step into an unfamiliar church? And what if that church was Community Church? Would we be ready for them?

Cold Stone Build-Your-Own Sundae Bar

On July 14th, our incredible Launch Team headed over to Belmont Lake State Park, strapped on a few aprons, and served free Cold Stone ice cream to a crowd of over 100 guests. The goal of this event was to introduce ourselves to some of the members of the community and leave them with a good taste in their mouths (See what I did there?).

On a more serious note, research has shown that most people in our community no longer think positively about the church. While it may not seem all that spiritual, a friendly face and a bowl of ice cream is one way we’re trying to change the way people think about church, and ultimately, change the way people think about God.

Road Trips

Since that first meeting and continuing up until our first service, as a team, we’ve begun taking “Road Trips” to other churches. The purpose of these road trips is to get reacquainted with the discomfort of being new in a church—a feeling that’s become so foreign to those of us who have been attending the same church for years. Our hope is that, as we get ready for our services, the Road Trips will have equipped us to effectively meet the needs and ease the discomforts of those joining us for the first time.

Attended:
June 30 | Shelter Rock Church (Syosset, NY)
July 21 | CenterPoint Church (Bay Shore, NY)

Upcoming:
August 25 | First Baptist Babylon (Babylon, NY)
Date TBA | The Harbor Church (Patchogue, NY)

Dirty Sock Race

For over a decade, Babylon has hosted a 10K to raise support for local food pantries and shelters. The race is known as the Dirty Sock Race. A few weeks ago, Eve Millner connected with those who are organizing the race and got us the chance to manage the three water stations during the race. Not surprisingly, a couple dozen of our faithful Launch Team members showed up to hand out water to 700 thirsty runners participating in the race.

INterested in joing the team?

Right now, we have about 50 dedicated members of our Launch Team, but we’re always looking for more. In the early stages, members of the Launch Team don’t have any specific roles or titles; they’re simply volunteers who are dedicated to seeing the vision of Community Church become a reality.

Those who join the Launch Team commit to…
  • Pray for Babylon and Community Church
  • Invite others to join the Team
  • Help at community events (1 or 2 per month)
  • Attend regular Launch Team meetings (monthly until we’re about 8 weeks from Launch, then weekly)
  • Volunteer regularly when church services begin (as available).

If you’re interested in joining the team, I’d love to talk more about it with you. Shoot me an email at [email protected]

LOU & ALLIE

MOVING TO BABYLON

With the help of a rental truck, a few pizzas, and the muscle of some of the Launch Team members, we’re excited to announce that the Pizzichillos are officially Town of Babylon residents! While we’ll definitely miss life and the people on the North Shore (and the Se-Port Deli), all four of us are thrilled to be in our new home. That said, there’s still some question as to whether or not Logan [3] actually realizes that we moved (He still thinks he’s a dog).

SPEAKING AT OTHER CHURCHES

Since leaving Three Village Church at the beginning of the summer, I’ve had the chance to speak at several other churches on Long Island. This has been an awesome opportunity to meet other people and leaders around the Island, spread the word about Community Church, and even raise financial support for the church.

Here’s where we’ve been so far...
June 23rd | Free Union Church (Fire Island, NY)
June 30th | Shelter Rock Church, (Syosset, NY)
July 7th | Three Village Church (Setauket, NY)
July 28th | CenterPoint Church (Long Beach, NY)
August 4th | Three Village Church (Setauket, NY)
August 25th | First Baptist Babylon (Babylon, NY)
September 29th | CenterPoint Church (Massapequa, NY)
October 27th | Shelter Rock Church, (Manhasset, NY)
November 17th | Main Street Church (Babylon, NY)

MAKING MORE FRIENDS

MEETING WITH TOWN SUPERVISOR

Several weeks ago, I requested a meeting with the Supervisor of the Town of Babylon, Rich Schaffer. I was extremely impressed with how quickly my request was answered. It quickly became obvious that the Supervisor himself makes it a priority to be available for the people of Babylon.

On August 8, I had the chance to sit down with Rich and his Deputy Supervisor, Tony Martinez. The two of them were friendly and eager to see how they could help me that morning. During our time together, the three of us spoke about some of the more pressing needs in the Babylon area and how this new church could most effectively serve the community. I was both encouraged to hear about how many groups were already serving in the community, and excited to learn about the ways that Community Church could help.

ORCHARD GROUP

For those of you who haven’t heard, we’ve established a partnership with a church planting organization called Orchard Group. So far, our relationship with them has been a dream. The group provides, coaching, accountability, a network of support, and a real sense of family among other experienced church planters. Brent Storms is the President of Orchard Group and is also serving as the chair of our board. His wealth of experience and constant encouragement has been a tremendous support during this whole process.

First Baptist CHURCH OF Babylon

I was nervous the first time I met with Pastor Wayne Griffiths of First Baptist Babylon. I wanted him to know that our church was coming alongside the work that his church was already doing, but honestly, I didn’t know how he was going to respond to the idea of a new church starting in the same town as his.

I walked into his office hoping to make an introduction; instead, I ended up making a friend. He was kind, interested, and extremely supportive. Almost immediately, he set up a meeting with the board members of his church and invited me to it. That night, I learned that Wayne’s attitude was not unique to him, but was part of a larger kingdom-mindset that had permeated the leadership culture of the church. As a church planter without a building or an office, I’ve had to get creative about where I get my work done. Shortly after learning of this, they gave me a key to their building, and offered me a room to set up an office. In fact, it’s from that church building that I’m typing this newsletter. Since then, Wayne and I have been meeting frequently  to pray for the people in this community.

The response of Pastor Wayne and the leadership of his church has made a lasting impression on me. It is a tangible answer to Jesus’ prayer that we "would be one.”

PARTNERSHIPS

God continuEs to amaze us.

So far, this has been an incredible journey. We are so excited to see where God takes the people of this community. In light of that, please continue to keep us in your prayers. We are trusting God to do the impossible.

"Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen"

EPHESIANS 3:20-21