Subject: West Side Update - July 6

Redeemer WestSide
WestSide Update
July 6, 2015

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Melissa Beck
W83 Front Desk Receptionist and Gallery Coordinator

Melissa has spent most of her life in California, and moved to New York City in August 2011. She earned her MFA in sculpture from Pratt and, in search for a non-art related job, she became the W83 Front Desk Receptionist and Gallery Coordinator in February 2015.

“Next thing I know, my non-art related job isn't anymore. But it's even better... God definitely has a better plan I couldn't conjure up myself!”

Melissa is the first face you encounter at W83. She greets and directs all visitors to the building, answers questions about Redeemer, and assists the events staff to ensure events run smoothly and safely. She also assists with curating and installing art exhibits that are featured in the Gallery Cove.

“Art making has always been my passion,” Melissa says, “but a newfound love of curating is budding, and fused with a church community makes it even better.”

Since working at W83, Melissa has discovered Riverside Park, which she says is a great place to walk on a break. Other favorites in the neighborhood include Cafe Lalo, Organic Avenue, Treat House and Cilantro.

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 ,

This past weekend I was at the Jersey Shore with my family, and one of the joys of summer for my daughters is body surfing in the ocean. And one of my joys is watching them. Of course one of the reasons I watch them is to make sure they are safe, which means making sure they don’t drift out too far, or to warn them if I see a large wave coming. So it’s a mixture of joy and care. I was thinking of that as I read through Psalm 121 a few days later which begins with the phrase, “I lift up my eyes to the mountains—where does my help come from?” And the answer the Psalmist gives us is that our help comes from the Lord who "watches" over us. In fact he uses the word "watch" five times in eight verses. And as I thought about how my watching over my daughters was a mixture of joy and protection, it struck me that God watches over us in the same way. He sees over the horizon of our lives, guards us against drifting too far away from him, all out of a Fatherly concern for us that is rooted in love and joy. A love that neither slumbers or sleeps because on the cross the Father stopped "watching" over his only Son so that we might know his joy and care.

The Lord will keep you from all harm— he will watch over your life; the Lord will watch over your coming and going both now and forevermore. – Psalm 121:7-8

In Christ,

Rev. David Bisgrove


We want to hear from you! Share your West Side Story in our weekly updates by clicking here.

Looking for summer reading on how to integrate your faith and work? Visit for vocational reading lists curated by the Center for Faith & Work.


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.

NYC Relief // Reach out to the Homeless
Saturday, July 11 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in Harlem
Not sure how to care for your homeless neighbors? Serve alongside NYC Relief staff and offer food and cold beverages, encouragement, and practical resources to reach out to the homeless. RSVP here

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.


Here are a highlighted events happening across Redeemer. For a full listing, see the Connect.

Walking with God through Pain and Suffering Summer Book Club
Wednesdays, July 15 - August 12, from 7 to 9 p.m. at Redeemer Offices
Women only. Are you struggling in a season of suffering? Please join us for discussion, prayer, and fellowship with the hope of seeing own personal stories in a new light - through God's greater narrative of death, resurrection and glory.For more info, contact

Job Search Round Table
Thursdays from 12:30 to 2:30 p.m. 
The Job Search Round Table, sponsored by the Diaconate, meets on Thursdays. Come learn the necessary skills from industry experts to conduct a successful job search from a gospel perspective. No RSVP needed. For more info, contact

The Lord is good, a refuge in times of trouble. He cares for those who trust in him. - Nahum 1:7

Lord of my longing, I have hopes that live deep within me and make my heart ache—for a place to belong, for beauty, for love to satisfy my heart, for shalom for this broken world, for home, to be with you. I reach out to the source of these desires, the risen Jesus, the guarantee of a restored world and my resurrection. Amen.  (from Seeking God's Face)

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