Subject: West Side Update - August 17

Redeemer WestSide
WestSide Update

August 17, 2015

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Timmy Huynh, Photo Editor
Community Group Leader

Timmy Huynh started attending Redeemer two years ago when he moved to New York after graduate school. He’s a photo editor at the Wall Street Journal and leads a recent grads Community Group in the UWS.

Timmy lives in Sunnyside, Queens, but still has his favorite spot in the UWS: “When it's nice out, I try to read Sunday afternoons at Central Park. My favorite spot is on the Lake, across from Bethesda fountain and right around the corner from Bow Bridge.”

Timmy began co-leading a recent grads Beta Group last fall, and it continued to meet past the 7 weeks as a Community Group. “Co-leading a CG has been one of the most challenging but most fulfilling things I've done spiritually in the past 5 years,” Timmy says.

“Although there are so many people in NYC in such close physical proximity, it can be one of the loneliest places in the world. Social media doesn't help, because it makes us feel like everyone else has a perfect life, and we're the only sad ones watching Netflix on a Friday night with our friends Ben & Jerry.

That's why I think it's more important than ever to be intentional about fostering deep relationships and pursuing community, even if it's sometimes awkward and uncomfortable. The Christian walk isn't meant to be done alone, and having people by our side makes it so much more worthwhile.”

Want to tell your West Side Story? To be featured as a West Side Story in our weekly update, click here.

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 ,

One week ago we dropped off our 10-year-old daughter to sleep away camp for the first time. That’s the last we heard from her. The camp’s policy of no phone calls or email is both necessary and painful. Painful because it’s not just that we miss our daughter, but it’s the fact of not knowing how or what she is doing on a daily basis. The silence deepens the longing. And it underscores the simple principle that the foundation of, and fuel for, relational love is regular interaction. It’s the daily interweaving of our lives, the talking and listening and observing, that knits us together with those we love.

Of course the same is true in our relationship with God. So many of our struggles with feeling “close to God” are a function of the lack of daily interaction with him; the absence of talking and listening that comes through prayer and reading God’s word. The West Side staff team recently spent a day together in which we reflected on the priority of reading and meditating on God’s word, a kind of ‘reading’ beautifully described by Eugene Peterson this way:

Reading that enters our souls as food enters our stomachs, spreads through our blood, and becomes holiness, love and wisdom.

. . .

Since my first draft of this reflection we received a short, handwritten note from our daughter. I must have read it ten times, trying to glean as much as possible from the truncated thoughts of a 10-year-old as the words entered my soul and became love. That’s what awaits us when we open the word of God, whose love for us is boundless and will never let us go.

For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. – Romans 8:38-39

In Christ,

Rev. David Bisgrove


Interested in leading a group like Timmy? There is still a need for Beta Group leaders in the Hell's Kitchen/Columbus Circle area and in the W 70s. If you would like to lead a Beta Group, please visit


Who's riding in the HFNY Bike Ride?
Saturday, September 26, 2015
Check out our list of riders for the HFNY Charity Bike Ride on Sept. 26! Our team of cyclists is growing--want to join us? Learn more at

The Salvation Army // Lead Dance or Music Class for Children
Are you a dancer, guitarist, percussionist, or piano player? Volunteers lead weekly dance and music classes in the evenings at The Salvation Army near Times Square. Volunteer applications are due this summer and classes will begin in September. Request information here.

Cru Inner City // Pack "PowerPacks"
Saturday, August 29 from 9 to 10:30 a.m. or 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Volunteers will pack school supplies for children in need throughout NYC as they prepare for the new school year. Great opportunity for groups and families to serve together. Learn more here.

The Open Door // Co-teach English Classes for Immigrant Community
Wednesday, September 9, from 7 to 8:30 p.m.
Volunteers will co-teach basic to advanced level English to students for fall semester every Wednesday or Thursday from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Learn more here.


Diaconate Divorce Care Group
First meeting is Thursday, September 10, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
The Diaconate Divorce Care Group is for women in any stage of divorce and seeks to provide a safe place for mutual support and a fresh start through Scripture, prayer and a divorce recovery workbook. Contact to register. The group will meet in an UWS home and space is limited.

Announcing the 2015 Faith & Work Conference
Friday, November 6, to Saturday, November 7
Registration is open for Beyond Collaboration: Discovering the Communal Nature of Calling. This two-day event will explore themes of covenant and calling, investigating how the gospel makes a whole greater than the sum of its parts. Visit


"How sweet are your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth!" - Psalm 119:103

"I’m convinced God enjoys it when we consciously employ his word in our prayers. It shows him the importance we attach to our requests. It demonstrates we have thought through our petitions and praises and lined them up against the plumb line of Scripture. It underscores to him the high regard and appreciation we attach to his word and demonstrates that we sincerely seek his heart in the matter for which we pray." - from "Speaking God’s Language: How Scripture can add power to your prayers" by Joni Eareckson Tada

Visit for additional prayer resources and tools.

West Side Congregation
Church Offices | 1166 Avenue of the Americas, 16th Fl | New York, NY 10036
W83 Ministry Center | 150 W 83rd St. | New York, NY 10024