Church buildings are dark but Jesus is alive!
Think about the original disciples on the first Easter.
They didn't gather together to worship at sunrise.
They weren't singing songs of joy. They didn't listen
to a great choir and great preaching while dressed in their
They were in self-enforced isolation, much like we are.
Their isolation wasn't because of a virus. They were
hiding behing a locked door for fear of the Jews. The
Jews and the Romans had worked together to crucify Jesus,
and they were afraid that they were next. So they
stayed out-of-sight, hoping that by doing so, they would be
Some of their women reported that they had seen Jesus, but
the disciples in their grief didn't really accept their
story. Peter and John actually left their hiding for a
short time to see the tomb and found it empty, but only John
believed that a miracle had occured. The others,
apparently, just wondered where the body of Jesus was.
So they spent their day in grief, confusion, worry, and
It wasn't until that night that they came to believe when
they saw Jesus.
We are, for the most part, in isolation in our own homes.
Most Americans are experiencing some confusion, worry, and
fear. But I pray that, like the disciples, you will
find joy this Easter.
The Coronavirus hasn't changed the fact that Jesus is alive.
I was thinking about it last night as I thought about what
to do about Easter services. I have staked my whole
life and ministry on this one fact: Jesus rose
and is alive! And since that is true, I have
much to celebrate. I hope you know this as well.
So join us (online) for Easter. Celebrate with us.
Pray for us and for each other. And share His story
(and yours) with someone this week!
We had a very successful first week of
prayer in a zoom setting, and we learned some things that
will make this one even better. NOTE: All zoom
meetings now require a password or require you to follow a
long line such as you can click on below! Join us on online on
Wednesday, April 8, at 7:00 pm!
Jack Marslender is inviting you to a
scheduled Zoom meeting. Topic: Prayer Meeting.
Time: Apr 8, 2020 07:00 PM Arizona
Join Zoom Meeting;
Meeting ID: 473 528 595
Holy Week Prayer Video & Devotional
word from Student Ministries Director
To say these
last few weeks have been challenging is an understatement at
best. Switching from in-person to online is definitely
outside of my comfort zone. Iím sure you are having your
challenges too. Focus on the Family has some great
ideas on their ď50
Games and Activities To Do With Your KidsĒ
page. From activities to burn energy to board games to
puzzles, thereís something for everyone and every age.
continue to join us for Sunday morning Bible study on video
every week via Vimeo or Facebook. Wednesday nights teens are
invited to join us for
Youth Group at Home a live
stream lesson sponsored by Youth Ministry 360. Our group
follows that up with a Zoom meeting to discuss the lesson.
Also, Sunday afternoons at 1:00 pm is Sunday Fun! We are
playing virtual games on our ABC Students page on Facebook.
Winners get a food prize delivered to their home. This week
is a special Easter edition.
importantly, we are encouraging the teens to study the Bible
and pray together on the YouVersion Bible app. We are
reading through the Bible this year with The One Year Bible
to begin this great plan.
links and info to everything the ABC Youth Ministry is doing
is delivered by email each week. If you are not receiving
emails, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
We are praying for you! Hang in there!
word from Children's Ministries Director
If the last couple
of weeks at your house have been anything like the last
couple of weeks at my house, you have probably been relying
on a bit of coffee, Disney +, sidewalk chalk and a whole lot
of prayer and Jesus! Don't get me wrong, I have
enjoyed some extra time with my kids riding bikes, baking
cookies, watching movies, and playing games! A little less
enjoyable has been remote learning or doing school at home,
while still trying to work, clean the house, the
sibling fighting, working on my own schoolwork, and making
dinner 10 times a week. Your likes and dislikes about our
current situation may be different from mine but one thing
we have in common is we are searching for our new normal. As
you find your new normal donít forget to keep Jesus at the
center of it all, especially as we prepare to celebrate the
Resurrection of our Savior! The way we do church has changed
but the God we serve is the same yesterday, today and
tomorrow, letís not cease in our worship of Him.
keep you and your kids connected to ABC and their spiritual
growth, I have been posting a weekly video from our Gospel
Project lessons. They are available on the churchís website
and are included in the weekly newsletter that Pastor Jack
has been sending out. We also are sending out our
Sunday School lessons through Lifewayís Ministry Grid
through email to parents to do with their kids. These are
the lessons we would be doing in Sunday School each week,
and when we are able to meet again in person they won't have
missed a week. They include some fun videos, Sunday school
books, activity pages, and more. I hope you will check them
out. If you would like to receive these lessons email
email@example.com and include
the email address you would like the lesson to be sent to
and I will include you in the link to these emails. Check
your spam folder if you donít see it. I will try to send the
link between Thursday and Saturday of each week prior to the
Sunday the lesson is meant to be taught. Have another idea
or way we can minister to your kids? Contact me, I would
love to hear your ideas.
I donít want
to overwhelm you with any more than you have on your plate
already, but if you need anything please donít hesitate to
call, text, or email me. Just need to vent? Call, text or
email me. Do your kids have questions (school or church)?
Call, text or email. Need some ideas to keep the kids busy?
Call, text, or email me. Well, you get the idea... if you
need anything I am here for you. Let your kids know we are
thinking about them and we love and miss them and are
looking forward to seeing them again soon!
word from our Minister of Worship
Mary Kaye Wonner
Mary Kaye has a blog, and she invites you as she
writes each day about what she and others are reading
through the Bible this year. We just began the Book of
Here's the link:
If you need anything at all, we want to
help! And because we have some incredibly helpful and
very generous people in our congregation, we can do some
things to help you may not have thought of.
Here are some things we can do:
We have a Benevolence Fund to help the
members of our church family in need. If you need
help, please ask! You can go to
www.abcaz.net/benevolence for information.
Need supplies? We can arrange to have
someone shop for you and deliver what you need. And if
you need toilet paper . . . we have some!
Need prayer? We will pray for you!
Call us or use our online prayer request portal at
Need a ride? We have volunteers who
will take you to a doctor's appointment or anywhere else you
need to go!
Need computer help? Want someone to
set up your computer so you can worship with us or
participate in our Zoom prayer meeting? Brian Bennawy at
firstname.lastname@example.org will talk you through any techincal
And if you need something else, please ask! Send an
email to email@example.com
or call the church office at 623.932.2723 and we will see
what we can do!
And here's something you can do for us. Please pass on
this information to Senior Adults. Many of them are
not online, and we want to help!
We're doing our best to love God, love people, and follow
Closed Our Campus . . .
. . . but we didn't close our church.
It's a good time to remind ourselves of the New Testament
theology of the church. The church is not the
building--church buildings didn't even exist in New
Testament times. The church was the people and that's
still the definition of the church. The church is the
disciples of Jesus who meet together and serve Jesus
together. So our church is still open; we are just
having to find new ways to meet and serve. Only our
building is closed.
However, since I've had questions, I did want to explain why
we've closed our buildings. You can read my
explanation on my blog at
Pastor Jack Marslender
How We're Doing Church Right
These are difficult times for all churches,
and ours is no exception. We are learning as-we-go, so
here are the things we are doing right now:
We are collecting prayer requests on
the internet and by phone. Submit your requests by
calling 623.932.2723 and leaving a message if we don't
answer, or on our prayer page at
We will pray for you!
We are leading worship services online each week until we
are able to meet again. Find it on our main page (www.abcaz.net)
or on our Facebook page.
We will also have a short midweek prayer video (12-15
minutes) on both places that will help you to pray for us
and with us, and we are trying this week a ZOOM prayer
We are closing our office now that the governor has issued a
stay-at-home order. We WILL get phone calls--they're
being forwarded during office hours. The staff will
work from home and will still get email.
Mission of Mercy is only doing prescription refills from a
van in the parking lot. Our Pregnancy Center is closed
until further notice. Our IHELP homeless ministry is
suspended for now; we're finding places for those currently
in the program.
If you want to bring supplies to give out to those in need
(with a focus on our own seniors), drop them off in the
mornings or we will arrange to pick them up. Most needed
items include paper products and baby wipes.
Our staff members are still on-duty even if they are not in the
office. So if you need anything, please let us know!
Call or email us.
We are not able to pass the plates, so you can give online on our
webpage (follow the link at
www.abcaz.net) or you can simply mail your checks to
Avondale Baptist Church, 1001 N. Central, Avondale, AZ
A member contacted me with an idea. He knows that
others will need the anticipated government check of $1200
more than he will, so He is going to donate it to our
Benevolence Fund. That way, we will be able to help
others who need it. It's a great idea! If others
choose to do it, just designate it to "Benevolence.