Southside Baptist Church has been in the process of remodeling our sanctuary which was originally dedicated in 1950. It has stood at the heart of the San Marco community for over 60 years. Many have stood in her shadow and paused in the middle of a busy day at the sounds of the chimes coming from her steeple. When the renovations plans were in process and completion dates were being discusses, we soon realized dedication Sunday would fall on September 11, 2011. Not just the anniversary of the worst terrorist attack in American history, but the 10th anniversary of those attacks. We debated changing our dedication date, but ultimately decided it was the perfect symbol of our church’s message to the world. Out of the brokenness and destruction of our world, beauty will rise with the love and power of Jesus Christ.
The date of September 11 will forever be scared by the events of 2001. On this, the 10th anniversary, we reflect on the ways our world has changed and the terrible reminder of its often broken condition. “Out of ashes,” the psalmist reminds us, “beauty will rise.” As Christians we know that without the terrible events of Good Friday there would have been no resurrection Sunday. As Christians we believe the brokenness of our world does not define us. Instead we stand as lights in the darkness pointing to the hope of a new day dawning. While we never forget the terrible lessons of our past we refuse to allow them to steal our hope for tomorrow.
Our day to RE:member, RE:new and RE:joice will begin at 10:15, September 11, 2011. We will gather outside the church forming a prayer circle around the entire campus. We will pray for our community, our nation and our world. We will also pray for our church and churches across the globe. As the chimes ring at 10:30, the doors to the sanctuary will reopen and everyone will be invited in for a time of worship. Anyone not physically capable of surrounding the building will be invited to pray in the main hallway leading into the sanctuary.
On this very important day, the entire Southside Family will worship together as a symbol of our unity and expression of our gratitude for God’s faithfulness and provision to and through our church. Grow Groups (Sunday school) will be meeting at 9:30 for an abbreviated time of prayer and devotion before being dismissed for the prayer circle.
I hope you will make arrangements to join us for this significant milestone. Nearly one year ago we prayed for God to lead us in this effort. Now, one year later, we look back and RE:joice at the works of His hands. Not only has the sanctuary been RE:novated debt free, we have set aside nearly $50,000 for mission causes and have RE:newed our commitment to fulfilling Christ’s mission in San Marco and around the world. May God be glorified through the faithful obedience of this, His Church.
Grace and Peace,
Gary Lee Webber
Pastor, Southside Baptist Church