Oh come, let us worship and bow down; let us kneel before the LORD, our Maker!  (Psalm 95:6)


“Nobody noticed that we were gone from worship all summer. . .”

Those words sting my heart every time I remember them.  The young couple sat in my office, saddened to tell me that no one had called or inquired about their absence.

I was baffled, and alarmed.  Both that they’d been gone the entire summer, and that no one had noticed.

I was just in the first year of ministry at VELC, and I was just beginning to get acquainted with the “ways” of the people, their habits at worship.  I was somewhat dismayed at the noticeable drop in attendance that first summer.

Summer is a blessed time.  School is out, the days are longer, and many of us enjoy a sense of “Sabbath” rest from June through August.  We have an understandable need to take it easy from the ordinary, to “sleep in” or spend more time with family, getting chores done and just playing.

It took a while for me to accept this.  In my first few years here I tried to implement mid-week summer programs – bible studies, cook-outs, outside worship.  My efforts were met with lukewarm reception.  Most people weren’t interested in adding something else to their schedules.

Summer is “down time.”

But I wonder.  Programs are one thing, worship another.  Studies show that Christians are attending worship with less frequency.  This trend is exacerbated during the summer.  This concerns me.

For Christians, worshipping God is the number one priority.

We want to help you keep that priority:

This summer, we’ve scaled down our worship to its simplest form.  We’re choosing a lively combination of contemporary and traditional songs (and I promise to keep my sermons short and to the point!)  The one service – 9 am – is at a convenient time.  Not too early or too late.  We’ll still have most of the morning and the whole afternoon to enjoy the day!

God commands our worship and indeed it is one of our four core values. Worship connects us to God, transforms our lives and allows meaningful relationships to be maintained, especially during the down time of summer.

It is my prayer that each of us commit to more regular worship this summer. . . That we allow ourselves that one important connection each week.

And if you notice someone has been gone, why not give them a call to tell them you miss them?