Subject: West Side Update - November 3

Redeemer WestSide
WestSide Update
November 3, 2014

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Megan Knapp
Opera Singer

“I grew up in Nebraska on a farm,” says Megan Knapp, who has lived in NYC for four years. “I learned lots of interesting skills. For instance, I can drive a tractor with a trailer in reverse in a straight line. I also love animals. I’m glad I was raised in the country – it’s very dear to me.”

Megan is an opera singer. She initially moved to NYC for her master’s in classical voice performance, and she is now the soloist in large choral works like Beethoven’s 9th Symphony, Verdi’s Requiem and Handel’s Messiah. She also works in the Transaction Advisory Services practice at EY, a Big 4 accounting firm.

During high school, Megan played varsity volleyball and basketball and ran track, so she’s always up for opportunities to play group sports. “I think it’s fun to be a part of a team,” says Megan. She also loves to cook, bake and throw parties. She says, “I can’t wait to have friends over to watch college football this fall – I’ll make homemade salsa, queso and brownies.”

Megan was a 2014 Gotham Fellow with the Center for Faith & Work. “Let me tell you, the Gotham Fellowship program is incredible,” she says. “The curriculum is well crafted and the experience anchored me to Redeemer and the city. I’m grateful for the experience – it deepened my relationship with the Lord and I made great friends.”

One of her favorite quotes is from Howard Thurman: “Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive.”

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.
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In 1983, Pope John Paul II visited the prison cell of the man who had attempted to assassinate him, offering forgiveness. Time magazine made it their cover story, an excerpt of which is below:

“The scene in the prison had a symbolic splendor. It shone in lovely contrast to what the world had witnessed lately…for some time a suspicion had taken hold that the trajectory of history is descendant, that the world moves from disorder to greater disorder – The symbolism of the pictures from Rebibibia (the prison) is precisely the XTN message – that people can be redeemed, and they are ascendant toward the light.”

Forgiveness is a concept that we positively embrace, find canonized in the Lord’s Prayer (‘forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors’) and struggle to put into practice. That’s because of the cost involved. It is a debt that must be paid (Matthew 18:27), a cleansing that must be offered (Isaiah 1:18), a self-assessment of our contribution (Matthew 7:5), and a decision to ‘forget’ it ever happened (Isaiah 43:25-26). In other words it is painful, sacrificial, costly, and loving all at the same time - like a cross.

This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers and sisters. – I John 3:16

In Christ,

Rev. David Bisgrove


November is Officer Nomination Month
Our Redeemer members are indispensable in identifying potential elders, deacons and deaconesses. If you are a member, you have the privilege to suggest such a role to a fellow member you prayerfully consider. Now is the time to nominate a fellow member with gifting and maturity to serve. Pray that many members will gladly accept their nominations. Learn more here.

Sunday Connections Teams
Are you currently tapped into Redeemer and would love to get newcomers connected to Redeemer? Sign up for our newest Sunday Service Team ministry! There are Connections Team spots open at the Coffee Hours after the 11:30 and 6:45 services. Email for more information.

Get in the holiday spirit, His Toy Store is here!
His Toy Store is HFNY's Christmas outreach to families in need, where parents are invited to pop-up stores (entirely run by volunteers!) to shop for toys at no cost and connect to HFNY affiliates for year-round support. Through Nov. 31, you can make a donation for Christmas toys at

Here are some highlighted opportunities to serve the city with Hope for New York. As always, you can check HFNY’s volunteer page to search a full list by neighborhood and service type.

Defy Ventures // Coach Formerly Incarcerated Men & Women
Tonight! Mon, Nov 3 from 6:30 to 10 p.m. 
Volunteers will serve as a startup coach at this event to advise men and women in the Entrepreneurs-in-Training program! Individualized meetings with EITs will focus on offering strategic insight into some of their toughest entrepreneurship obstacles. RSVP online.

Project FIND Hamilton // Assist in Winterizing the Hamilton Senior Center Rooftop
Wed, Nov 5 from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.on UWS
5 to 10 volunteers will clean rooftop equipment and furniture, help store items, and clean the rooftop for the coming winter. RSVP online.

The Inner City Ministry of Cru // Supervise the Packing of Thanksgiving Boxes of Love
Sat, Nov 22 from 8:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. at W83 Ministry Center
Adult volunteers will supervise areas of the project where children and families will pack “Boxes of Love” - a Thanksgiving dinner for families in need. The event is in partnership with the West Side Children’s Ministry. RSVP online.


You’re Invited to the Diaconate Open House
Fri, Nov 14 at 6:30 p.m., Redeemer offices, 1359 Broadway, 4th Fl
Are you curious about the Diaconate ministry? Come meet your friendly deeks and stay for a lively panel discussion and Q & A with them. Learn about this prayerful and holistic ministry to consider what is involved with giving and receiving mercy. Bring others who are interested in the Diaconate. Refreshments served. RSVP here.

You're Invited to a Birthday Party for Jesus!
Saturday, December 6 from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., W83
Bring your family, invite your friends, and join Redeemer's three congregations as we celebrate the birth of Jesus with a nativity program, Christmas carols, HFNY service project, crafts, games, face painting, and even birthday cake! There will be activities for children of all ages, young and old! Register at

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7

Ever thought about starting a small prayer or accountability group?
It’s a beautiful way to encourage and sharpen one another as we continue becoming what God has created us to be. Grab a friend or two, find a regular time to meet and use this guide to help you get started!
West Side Congregation
Church Offices | 1359 Broadway 4th Floor | New York, NY 10018
W83 Ministry Center | 150 W 83rd St. | New York, NY 10024