Subject: West Side Update - January 18

Redeemer West Side
January 18, 2016

Nicole Rusk
KCG Volunteer

"One generation will commend your works to another; they will tell of your mighty acts” (Psalm 145:4).

This verse has motivated Nicole to be involved in KCG, or Kids Community Group, for the last two and a half years.

“[KCG] helps integrate [my sons'] faith in an organic way into their world; prayer for them often is much more the default solution than it is for me,” she says. "They reach out to God in simple and direct ways, which is refreshing."

Nicole Rusk has been attending Redeemer since she moved to New York City in 1999. In early 2000, Nicole met her husband Grant at a Redeemer retreat, and they married in 2001. They lived in the Upper East Side for two years before moving to the Upper West Side, where they still live with their three sons: Declan, Kaiden and Adrian.

“The most exciting thing [about NYC] is the mix of people with completely different backgrounds one interacts with,” she says. "Both my older boys are in public schools with a huge racial and socioeconomic diversity."

Nicole is a molecular biologist by training and worked in cancer research for several years. She is now an editor for a scientific journal. Over the years, she has been involved in numerous small groups and moms’ groups.

"Being part of a Working Moms' group when the kids were very little provided a tremendous amount of support,” she says.

She loves long distance running—"I have run a few marathons, but these days just enjoy looping around the park or running along the Hudson”—and tries to put in 25 miles a week!

Nicole grew up in Vienna, Austria, and misses speaking German: “If there are German speakers at the morning services, I want to meet them,” she says.

Share your West Side Story! We'd love to hear from you at

WS Cafe
Tues, 7 to 8:15 p.m., Rm. 406

The West Side Café is an open space for seekers, skeptics and those considering Christianity to engage with and process the Christian faith. Each week will involve a short presentation and discussion addressing topics of interest and claims of the Christian faith. If you are considering the claims of Christianity, or would like to bring someone you know who is, feel free to stop by on a Tuesday evening or register to attend here.

For more info, visit

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 ,

Dignity. Human Rights. Justice. Peace. These words resonate with the core of our humanity. For Christians, that resonance flows from an understanding that sin has despoiled God’s good creation (Genesis 3) and has left us longing for his redemptive power to bring about what prophets like Micah described as a time when “everyone will sit under their own vine and under their own fig tree, and no one will make them afraid” (Micah 4:4).

How is that going to happen? In part, if we who follow Jesus invest our resources (time, skill, money) in such a way that brings about the Kingdom he initiated upon his incarnation (Mark 1:15), particularly among the marginalized. But we must do it in a way that honors the dignity of those receiving our help, which means heeding these words of Christine Pohl from her book Making Room:

Although persons need provision, they also need connection to living communities; otherwise they remain anonymous and vulnerable.

On this day, set aside time to remember Martin Luther King’s passion and sacrifice for the causes of dignity and justice, and consider how you might apply Pohl’s exhortation. One way is to sign up for Don’t Walk By, on either February 6 or February 27 scheduled for. Our goal is to have at least 100 West Side congregants to participate, so please click here to find out more. And as I do every Martin Luther King Day, I have included a link to Dr. King’s “Letter from Birmingham Jail,” which is well worth your time and reflection.

Learn to do right; seek justice. Defend the oppressed. Take up the cause of the fatherless; plead the case of the widow. —Isaiah 1:17

In Christ,

Rev. David Bisgrove (at)David_Bisgrove


We need your help on Sundays | As a church not for ourselves but for the city, we seek to welcome all who enter our doors to worship on Sundays with hospitality and winsomeness. Each week, volunteers serve as ushers or on the communion, connections, info table or book table teams. And we need your help to continue to love and serve those in our worship services and at Coffee Hour as we experience the gospel together. If you'd like to learn more about serving on Sundays and to sign up, visit

Update your account info for 2016 | Moved recently? Added someone to your family? Update your profile on to make sure you’re getting all the right info from us sent to the right place (and person). Go to to update your information.


Calling all West Side families to serve the homeless
Saturday, January 30, from 10 to 11:30 a.m. 
West Side families are invited to join HFNY & Children's Ministry for Kits of Care. Families will pack 800 care kits that will be distributed to homeless individuals during Don't Walk By, an annual outreach to the homeless in Manhattan. Registration is required at


The Christian Storyline
Sundays, January 24 to February 21 from 1:15 to 2:30 p.m. (no class on February 14)
Have you been feeling like you've been caught in a flurry of news? Have you been in a daze from all that has been going on, whether global or local, or with family or from changes in your own life? Consider taking this 4-week class led by Redeemer staff member, Chris Miles, as he invites open discussion on whether the Christian storyline—creation, the Fall, redemption and restoration—coheres with your experiences in the world. Find your place in the larger story and be empowered to live constructively in it. Register here.

Foundations for Understanding the Bible
Sundays, January 24 to February 7 from 1:15 to 2:30 p.m.
If one of your new year's goals is (was) to "get more" out of your Bible reading, or if you aren't sure how to make sense of everything in the Bible, then this class is for you. Join Rev. Bijan Mirtolooi as he teaches skills for interpreting and applying the Bible. Register here.

Why Work Matters: The Intersection of Faith and Work
Sunday, January 24 from 1:15 to 3:15 p.m.
This two-hour lunch seminar will help us understand the question of why God cares so much about the work that we do Monday through Friday. Two leaders from the Center for Faith and Work will lead the class in exploring being created to work, loving our work, and being empowered for work. Register here.

More info about West Side Classes at


"And the words of the Lord are flawless, like silver purified in a crucible, like gold refined sevent times. You, Lord, will keep the needy safe and will protect us forever from the wicked." — Psalm 12:6-7

Today's prayer from The Songs of Jesus:
Lord, I am surrounded by people whose words are either fawning and flattering or malicious and stinging. Don't let me imitate them. Make my words honest and true, economical and few, wise and well chosen, calm and kind. Give me so much love and grace that this kind of conversation comes naturally to me. Amen.

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