Neighbors come together after violent attack

On June 21, Don and Leigh Ann Zirkle were attacked in their home by an armed intruder. Don did not survive his severe injuries. Leigh Ann remains in hospital; after multiple surgeries, she is slowly recovering from the physical trauma.

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This horrific attack was a shock to all of us, and we have come together in many ways to offer our help and support — from neighbors who provided life-saving medical care to Leigh Ann until the ambulance arrived, to those who cut the grass or wrote cards of encouragement.

What can we do? Funeral plans for Don are on hold until Leigh Ann is strong enough to participate in the planning. In the meantime, we surround her with our prayers, but we also struggle with having our own sense of safety shaken and feeling helpless in the face of such violence.

The congregations of Westminster Presbyterian Church and Vine Street Christian Church invite our neighbors to a prayer service on Sunday, July 7, at 7 p.m., at Vine Street Christian Church (4101 Harding Pike). We want to come together to show our support, to pray, to share our grief and our hope, to strengthen the bonds of neighborliness and friendship, and to talk about how we can continue to build a community of support for Leigh Ann and her and Don’s families. Please join us.

Thirsty neighbors, local history, and more

On Sunday, July 14, we will dedicate this summer's water offering for Open Table Nashville. Please bring your donation of bottled water to church that Sunday - from cases of 0.5l bottles (16.9oz) to jugs up to 2.5 gallons. Open Table will pass out the bottles as they check on homeless folks on the streets and in camps. Thank you for being part of this effort to save lives and make life outside a little more bearable!

All y'all, brass, and the other pledge

Next Saturday, June 22, as part of Nashville’s Pride Month celebrations, more than 5000 people are expected to participate in our city’s first Pride Parade—5000, and that’s not counting the spectators that will line Broadway between 8th and 2nd Avenues! A group of about twenty folks from Vine Street will be in the parade to affirm the radical hospitality of God: all of us are made in the image of God; all of us are called to new life in Christ; and God is pouring out the Spirit on all flesh.

Pentecost brunch, what to wear, and summer updates

We will celebrate Pentecost on Sunday - God's outpouring of the Holy Spirit on all people. Don't know what to wear? Here are some suggestions! After worship we will meet in Fellowship Hall for brunch and to make "the other pledge" - how will you put the gifts of the Spirit to use in ministry? If you signed up for a brunch item, you may refer to this list to remember what it was. Thank you!

RHE Summer Book Group

Rachel Held Evans’s death at age 37 was a shock to many, especially to readers of her blog and her books. Amanda Miller had planned to read Inspired: Slaying Giants, Walking on Water, and Loving the Bible Again (2018) this summer, and she would love to read it with a group. If you’re interested, please contact Amanda.

Here’s what the publisher wrote about the book: If the Bible isn’t a science book, instruction manual, or position paper, then what is it? Rachel Held Evans invites readers on a journey of rediscovery as she explores the magic of the Bible, engaging the old, familiar stories in new ways that honor the past and enlighten the present.

Drawing upon recent scholarship and literary analysis, Evans creatively retells our favorite Bible stories, explaining their contexts and possible interpretations, and then connects these ancient stories to our present-day ones. Using her well-honed literary instincts and experience in both evangelical and mainline Protestant traditions, Evans discovers a way of understanding that avoids noncommittal liberalism on one hand and strident literalism on the other. 

Readers are invited to fall in love with Scripture all over again without checking their intellect—or their imaginations—at the door.

Pledges, flowers, camps, classes, and the mercy of God

In worship on Sunday we will receive pledges of financial support for the year of ministry beginning July 1. If you cannot attend worship, please mail your pledge card to the church office, attention: Katie. You may also submit your pledge online. Giving via automatic bankdraft is very convenient; to set it up, please complete and return this form. For all the ways in which you are part of our common ministry, thank you!

Best Camp

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Who: children who have completed K-5th grade

What: A day camp that focuses on learning music and serving our community

When: Monday, July 15 - Thursday, July 18

Where: Vine Street Christian Church

Why: To enhance and support faith formation through learning and doing in community

How (much): $105

Includes: the t-shirt, snacks, art supplies, staff, and BBQ supper for the family (campers provide their own lunch)

Daily check-in: 8:45-9 am

Daily check-out: 3:30 pm

Registration closes: June 1

Questions? Contact Allison or Katie

Register here and invite your friends!

Table Talk

On Sunday, March 24, for about two hours after worship, the Vine Street Life Group is hosting a community meal in order to include the entire Vine Street community in topics around race and the church that they have been exploring for the last five months.

How it works:

During the first hour, you will be given a colored paper to determine your seating arrangements, then grab your food. Parents can help children decide if they would like to sit with them or at another table. At your table, while you eat, you will delve into questions ranging from how you have seen racism at work to how the church can be actively involved in combating racism. In the second hour, we will share some of our conversations with the full group to hear similarities and differences in experiences.

Other details:

  • This event is all age-friendly, but childcare will be available as well.

  • There will be a variety of displays to help guide your thinking in this conversation.

  • We do ask that you sign up, so we have a better idea of how much soup and chili we need to prepare.

  • We also ask for you to bring a side, dessert, or drinks to go along with the meal.

  • We are incredibly excited to share in a meal and conversation, bringing our table of unity into reality.

Ash Wednesday

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The season of Lent, a time of fasting, prayer, and repentance, begins with Ash Wednesday. Many of us appreciate the opportunity to come together on that first day for a time of prayer. We let ourselves be marked with the sign of the cross, a stark symbol of how profoundly fractured our relationships are with God, with one another, and with our fellow creatures. Yet at the same time, it is the emblem of our hope. The ashes are what is left of the palm branches we waved with joy and expectation when Jesus entered the city. Enthusiasm, commitments, and intentions  gone up in flames. We are earthlings after all, creatures, not lords of creation. But our God remembers that we are dust (Psalm 103:14). This is our hope: the memory and boundless love of God.  Come and join us on Wednesday, March 6,at 6:30 p.m.