April 10 News

Tidings of Comfort & Joy: Easter is coming!

April 10, 2020 

At the end of what has been another week of gnawing anxiety, isolation, illness or grief for many of our number, we come with tidings of comfort and joy. No, it’s not Christmas, but those tidings are just as apt for a weekend in which we’ll celebrate Christ’s resurrection as they are for celebrating his birth – maybe more so. This edition of our Friday newsletter begins with both – comfort followed by some joyful notes – and continues with news about our virtual worship services, service opportunities, and a look ahead to Easter Sunday. We hope it provides encouragement and peace in these troubled times

COMFORT: Join us tonight for Prayer Meeting

Among our congregants, several have been touched by COVID-19, either directly or indirectly, and are gravely concerned about themselves or a family member or a friend. Some of our number are not able to work and are anxious about finances. Others of us may be healthy but feeling the weight of isolation – or are simply heartsick about what we’re all enduring right now.

That’s why we’ve planned a virtual prayer meeting for TONIGHT at 7:30pm. It’s an opportunity for you to bring your requests, to share with God what’s on your heart, and for us all to pray together for God’s grace in this crisis. We’ll use Zoom for the prayer meeting, but you can also call in by phone if you don’t wish to connect on your computer. Please join us.  If you did not get the Zoom link info as a text this morning, you can request connection information here.  

JOY: A new brother in Christ!

We welcome our new brother in Christ, Jeff Mejia Guifarro, who was baptized last Sunday afternoon – and we rejoice with Jeff, his mom Yunia Rodriguez Guijarro, and his sister is Susan Rodriguez! Please send Jeff a note of encouragement:  Jeff Mejia Guifarro, 3904 Woodhue Place, Alexandria, VA 22309.

JOY: ACOC welcomes Sarah Tutor

Sarah Tutor has asked be counted as an ACOC congregants, and we’re glad to have her! She’s an Austin, Texas native, a recent Abilene Christian grad, and is working as an accountant with a local law firm. Send Sarah a note of welcome: Sarah Tutor, 100 Luna Park Drive
Apt. 107
Alexandria, VA 22305.

JOY (and thank you!): Galloway is new small group coordinator

Mitchell Galloway has taken on the role of small group coordinator for ACOC. We’re grateful to him for his willingness to support and empower our small group leaders as they share Christ and nurture relationships in their groups. Mitchell is a native of Tupelo, Miss., a Freed Hardeman and Vandy Law grad, and works for the U.S. Department of Justice.

JOY (as in, “bundle of”): Virtual baby shower for Aimee & Devin

There’s a virtual baby shower for Aimee & Devin Smith scheduled for April 19th beginning at 1pm. They are registered on BabyList at babylist.com/aimee-and-devin. Contact Erica Jackson to contribute to the group gift (text 202.660.2007 or email ejackson8815@gmail.com). Please refer to the invite here (http://evite.me/c3tr1qVyN9) for additional details and RSVP if you plan to attend. 

SERVE: NVFS needs diapers and wipes to assist local families

We learned this week that Northern Virginia Family Services is in urgent need of supplies to assist more than 50 local families in need during this public health emergency. Many of the 50 families they’re working with have lost jobs or have been furloughed by this crisis. The greatest need is diapers and wipes, we’re told. If you’d like to assist, contact Nohra Rodriguez soon at nohrarod@icloud.com.

Want to know more about NVFS?  Here’s their website.

WORSHIP: “Next week at the meetinghouse” …?

ACOC virtual worship and study groups continue to engage and thrive…

Since the fifteenth century, Jews have ended the Passover Seder with the words “Next year in Jerusalem!” It’s an expression that recalls the exile and the hope of being reunited again in that place. For some of us, these weeks of sequestration may feel a bit like exile – certainly not on the scale of the Jews’, but exile nevertheless. We yearn to be together again, to lift our hearts and voices in worship, side-by-side and face-to-face. Maybe it’s okay for now to co-opt that phrase. Maybe it’s okay for us to say “Next week at the meetinghouse,” and to hope for the end to this public health crisis and to coming together again on Sundays. Until then, though, we wait, and we worship as we can – virtually, thanks to technology.

Last week more than 180 unique individuals participated in our English and Spanish virtual worship groups – some even attending multiple groups. If you were one of those, thank you – and we’ll see you again this Sunday! If you were not one of those, we’d like to see you this Sunday. Please join us.


Other resources to prepare you for Easter Sunday:

  • Messages of encouragement: Look for links to Oscar’s and Chess’ weekly video messages of hope, coming in an email Saturday night or Sunday morning.
  • ArlingtonFamily.org: We continue to reorient the ACOC website to help keep us spiritually close even in this time of social distancing. For example, we’ve changed the calendar to a COVID-19 calendar showing all the virtual worship groups and connection information. 


PRAYER: Remember these…

New Additions this week:

  • Ernestine Jones’ brother-in-law, Roosevelt, is recovering from surgery
  • Kelly and Katherine Tek’s grandfather has passed away from Covid-19
  • Anna Hall seeks prayers for comfort and healing of her body

Continued Prayer:

  • The hurting, hopeless, ailing, lonely and oppressed
  • Those who have contracted the coronavirus – especially those of our number here at ACOC who have been affected – and for those healthcare workers and first responders giving care
  • Business leaders who are wrestling with keeping their employees safe physically, financially and mentally – as well as those employees themselves
  • Our nation’s and communities’ leaders as they make difficult choices
  • Our congregation in this time of physical separation and for our elders and ministers and ministry leaders
  • Calm and peace for us all, knowing that God is in control
  • Those of our congregation who have specific needs

You can find our entire prayer list here.   You can submit new prayer requests or updates here.


A resource for ACOC congregants

Have you checked out the Congregant Page on our website?  The first time you visit there, you’ll need to request the password. Once the password is in, your computer will remember it for up to 30 days. You’ll find links to all sorts of useful stuff – the most current prayer list, connection info for all our virtual services, the Breeze directory and how to update your Breeze profile, and a newly revised reimbursement process for ministry expenses. 

For kids: Sing a song of Easter

Here’s a “He’s Alive!” playlist of Easter songs to enjoy this weekend.  They’re from Yancy, a Christian children’s songwriter and performer. Great songs with a good message – and easily accessible on YouTube.


As you have been prospered…

We’re grateful for your continued giving during this time of separation. Last week’s giving totaled $26,658.72, much of it again the result of individuals’ sacrificial gifts to further our work during this difficult time or of folks’ making up for missed Sundays. Our average Sunday contribution for the year is $12,168.96.

Remember, you have at least three ways to make your regular contribution to ACOC:

  1. Mail your check directly to ACOC at 3201 Arlington Blvd, Arlington, VA 22201.
  2. Give online athttps://www.arlingtonfamily.org/give-electronically/
  3. Give by text. Simply text the amount to (703) 783-2110.



One Response to “April 10 News”

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