Subject: West Side Update – May 26

Redeemer WestSide
WestSide Update
May 26, 2014

Quick Links


Erica Heffner

“I moved up to the city with a few short-term goals, in hopes to move back south in a year or two, but the Lord has completely changed my heart and desire for living here,” says Erica Heffner.

Erica is originally from Pennsylvania but she lived in North Carolina for six years before moving to NYC two years ago. She lives on the UWS and is a full-time nanny.

“I entered this city feeling lonely and frustrated that God had taken me from a place and people I loved and put me in a place and with people, if I’m being honest, that I wanted little to do with. I wanted to see my goals achieved quickly and I wanted to live my life as I had planned and saw fit, but he slowly changed those plans,” says Erica. “I went from wanting to move in a year to wanting to live here as long as I can. I went from only wanting to take from this city to seeing it as my city — a city I could and should love because the Lord has beautiful plans for his people and I have the privilege of being a part of that!”

Erica loves walking in the city: “You get to see the most that way,” she says. And the Great Lawn or Sheep Meadow in Central Park are two of her favorite spots.

Erica has attended Redeemer since she first moved to the city. She’s now teaching our kindergarteners in our Sunday morning Children’s Ministry. And she co-leads a Community Group for our WS congregation: “They have become my family here and I am constantly challenged and encouraged by the women in my group,” 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 ,

A recent article in the Wall Street Journal lists 12 “helpful hints” for successful leaders, a modern version of what students of the Bible find in the book of Proverbs. These are the first two hints:

  1. Think first, talk later.
  2. Talk less, listen more.

So much of successful communication requires active listening. In an age of instantaneous information and the ability through social media to “weigh in” on any and every event, the advice is timely and sound. Taken together, these modern proverbs yield two aspects of godly character, humility and compassion.

Listening and thinking communicate a humility that says, “I don’t have all the answers and need to learn.” That is a sign of wisdom and will always serve you well. Also, engaged listening (as opposed to using the time you aren’t talking to prepare your next response) communicates to the person speaking compassion and care. As you know, so often the most helpful and healing thing you can do with a close friend is make sure the other person is heard. Advice is nice, but being heard can often times go so much further in helping another person.

An unfriendly person pursues selfish ends and against all sound judgment starts quarrels. Fools find no pleasure in understanding but delight in airing their own opinions. (Proverbs 18:1-2)

In Christ,

Rev. David Bisgrove


The 2013 annual report is out!
Each spring we release our annual report. The annual report for 2013 is now available, and we encourage you to read it online to learn more about Redeemer’s vision and ministry to New York City.


Serve the evening services
Sundays, between 4:30 p.m. and 8:30 p.m., W83
We’re looking for a few more people to come serve at our 5 and 7 p.m. services on the Info and Book Table, Communion and usher teams. We have a lot of people taking off during the summer, so if you’re around or if you’re here just for the summer, we can use volunteers across the board and would love to have you on the team. Sign up today!


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

Help host movie night at St. Paul’s House
Tuesday, May 27, from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m., 335 W 51st
Help St. Paul’s house host a movie night for guests who are either homeless or living in low-income housing. Volunteers set up snacks, engage with guests, participate in a Q&A about the movie and clean up afterward. Learn more and RSVP.

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

Free during the day this summer?
Be a day camp counselor

Training: Wednesday, June 18, 40 W 116th
Volunteers ages 16 and older are needed to serve as day camp counselors at StreetSquash’s Summer Discovery Camp in South Harlem, where rising sixth through ninth graders from the neighborhood are able to enjoy squash lessons, fun educational games, community and more. Contact Whitney at for more info and to sign up. A great for high school upperclassmen and undergraduates!

Serve dinner at All Angels’ Church
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 afterward at All Angels’ Church on UWS. Great way for groups to serve together! RSVP for June 1.


New Leader Basics training this Saturday
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 this Saturday. This will be our last one until the fall, so sign up today!

2014 Ei Forum this weekend
Friday and Saturday, May 30-31, 601 W 26th St
Just a few spots left for the Center for Faith & Work’s annual Entrepreneurship & Innovation Forum, which this year will explore how the disruptive power of the gospel can drive innovation. Open to all! Get your ticket today.

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