Subject: West Side Update – May 19

Redeemer WestSide
WestSide Update
May 19, 2014

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Michelle Brouhard
Community Group co-leader
Hedge fund managing director

Recently, Michelle Brouhard’s work has brought both heartache and excitement. She had worked in commodities for the last 15 years and loved everything about the commodity market. “But in the last few months I had really been feeling like God was bringing a new phase to my life,” she says.

Then, in early December 2013, the New York City bank she’d been working at for five years decided to exit the commodities business and fired 250 people in one day — including Michelle. “I was shocked and heartbroken,” she says. “I really had to wrestle and rely on God.”

“Over the following months God provided abundantly for me,” says Michelle. “But most importantly he gave me an overwhelming feeling of his presence and love during a time of transition.” She’s now a managing director at a hedge fund that focuses on oil trading, one of her favorite pastimes: “Though this sounds crazy, I love everything about the oil market. It’s a slight passion and obsession. I could read all things about pipelines and ship movements and refineries and geopolitics.”

Michelle is originally from Houston, TX. She’s lived in NYC for five years and attended Redeemer for two. She hosts a Community Group at her apartment, which she also co-leads. Her favorite spots on the West Side are Central and Riverside Parks and Zabar’s, and she enjoys traveling and reading fiction novels.

She’s also a long-distance runner, one who has a key training support group. “Last August I ran/walked/hiked an ultramarathon through Iceland. It was 155 miles and the hardest thing I’ve ever done,” says Michelle of the six-day race. “The training was intense and I couldn’t have done it without the help of my Community Group. They each would join me every weekend to train with me. And before I left they all wrote me notes for each day of the race.”

While the ultramarathon was quite the experience, Michelle thinks of life itself as adventurous: “Sometimes it is a total blast and sometimes it is a lot of heartache — but my life has always been an adventure,” she says.

As a church of Jesus Christ, Redeemer exists to help build a great city for all people through a movement of the gospel that brings personal conversion, community formation, social justice and cultural renewal to New York City and, through it, to the world.
Hello ,

This past Saturday night, hundreds of people from the West, East and Downtown congregations gathered at W83 to elect leaders and celebrate our collective vision. On the West Side, we are thrilled to welcome back Paul Gross as an elder after a year of sabbatical, as well as introduce Chuck Armstrong as a new deacon.

For those of you who weren’t able to attend the event, I wanted to share with you the two videos that were shown that night. One celebrates the ministry year theme of Public Faith, and the other briefly highlights Redeemer’s upcoming 25th anniversary celebration in September. They are very well done so I hope you will take the time and watch them.

Sitting on stage that night looking over the crowd of so many familiar faces, I was reminded of what a joy it has been to be on this journey the last 25 years, and the privilege it is to be your pastor.

Have a great week!

Also, seek the peace and prosperity of the city to which I have carried you into exile. Pray to the LORD for it, because if it prospers, you too will prosper. (Jeremiah 29:7)

In Christ,

Rev. David Bisgrove


The Diaconate is delighted to welcome our newly elected deacon Chuck Armstrong to serve the West Side!

The Diaconate is the mercy arm of Redeemer and our deacons and deaconesses (we affectionately call them the “deeks” collectively) are trained to help Redeemer members and regular attenders who face challenging situations. Since God’s mercy moves him to relieve suffering, we are given a desire to alleviate it. We are thankful for God’s provision of each new deek who makes us a missional church by God’s gift to build up a community and mobilize leader-servants. Your help and prayers are essential to help us identify future gifted Redeemer members who are suited and gifted to serve the Diaconate, and then nominating them in November.


Here are some highlighted opportunities to serve from Hope for New York. As always, you can check their Volunteer page to browse regular opportunities by neighborhood, date, service type and more.

All Angels’ evening meal service
Sundays, from 5 to 7:30 p.m., 251 W 80th
Volunteers are needed on Sunday evenings to help set up, serve a meal, interact with homeless guests and clean up after at All Angels’ Church on UWS. Great way for groups to serve together! RSVP for May 25 or June 1.

Teach ESL to adult students
Saturdays, from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., 265 Stanhope
Volunteers are needed to teach ESL to mostly Spanish-speaking adult students in Bushwick, Brooklyn, with Living Waters Fellowship. Spanish-speaking skills and a teaching/tutoring background are helpful, but not necessary. Three-month commitment required. Contact

Serve lunch and build relationships with UWS seniors
Sunday, May 25, from 11:30 a.m. to 12:45 p.m., 111 W 71st
Up to five volunteers assist in lunch service for local senior community and Project FIND-Hamilton Senior Center residents. RSVP for May 25.

Offer care and support to Midtown pregnancy support center clients
Volunteers are needed to serve as client advocates and committee members to provide emotional, social, and spiritual support to those experiencing unexpected pregnancies. To learn more and fill out an application, contact Laurel at


New Leader Basics training
Saturday, May 31, from 1 to 5:30 p.m., 1359 Broadway
Community Groups are the soil where the teaching planted on Sundays can grow and thrive. We want to train committed leaders to tend to the garden of our church for the life of our city. If this is something God might be calling you to, come to the New Leader Basics training on May 31. This will be our last one until the fall, so sign up today!

City Rhythms: Celebrating God’s work in the city
Thursday, May 22, from 7:30 to 9 p.m., 58 Park Ave
Join us for a special event celebrating God at work in NYC. Evening includes live music, food and drink, keynote by urban planner Jonathan Keller and a chance to connect with the entire CFW community. Sign up today!

2014 Entrepreneurship & Innovation Forum: Disruption
Friday and Saturday, May 30-31, 601 W 26th St
Innovation is not only for starting new ventures, but for engaging the brokenness in all fields. How might the disruptive power of the gospel provide us with a vision of God’s glory that propels us forward, bringing about innovation in our work? The Ei Forum is open to people of all professions, and is limited to entrepreneurs. Presenters, schedule and other details at

West Side Congregation
Church Offices | 1359 Broadway 4th Floor | New York, NY 10018
W83 Ministry Center | 150 W 83rd St. | New York, NY 10024