May 11, 2017
Galilee prides itself on its small groups and impact teams, those clusters of ordinary people who come together every day for fellowship and study, or to support or help others. It is in small groups that we’re most effective in accomplishing our extraordinary purpose of knowing Christ and making Christ known.
Prime Timers, our small group for older adults, is special in that it is a group of Galileans who have decades of experience under their belt. “Collectively, we cover lots of years,” leader Ferd Wagner likes to joke. Prime Timers meets every Wednesday at 11:30 for lunch and the door is always open for newcomers.
This Saturday, that door is opened even wider as Prime Timers hosts the Spring Food & Fun picnic from 12 to 2pm. All seniors are welcome to come along and bring their friends.
Pastor Jason and Ferd Wagner outside the Prime Timer’s Wednesday lunch.
“It’s our hope that lots of seniors will come out this Saturday,” says Ferd. “I know the weather forecast isn’t all that great, but rain or shine you can’t beat good friends and good barbecue. Whether outside in the sun or inside in the gym, we want to hear from everybody and share our stories, learn about Galilee’s ministries, and just have a good time.”
“My neighbor, Clevin Weekes, is a professional steel drummer who has agreed to join us to provide some wonderful entertainment. The Spring Food & Fun event could come to be an annual event, and I think it will help to grow senior participation in all the good we do at Galilee.”
All older adults are invited this Saturday, May 13 from 12-2pm. Catering by Famous Dave’s.
The picnic comes out of discussions Primer Timers have had about increasing fellowship and ministry among Galilee’s older adults.
“Prime Timers felt that we needed to move beyond being a discussion group, wonderful as that is,” says Ferd. “Getting more involved in outreach and service is living more faithfully the beliefs we profess. We’ve already started packing food for Backpack Buddies and organizing a card-writing ministry, now “Food & Fun” is a way to reach out to folks who may not have connected beyond the pews on Sunday morning. We want them to enjoy an afternoon of fellowship with new friends their own age, with similar interests.”
“With over 300 seniors in attendance, Galilee has a lot of potential in its congregation. These are people who have lived rich and varied lives and bring experience, talents, and skills that they can use now to grow spiritually. We’re inviting them to lunch, but we really want to challenge them (and ourselves) to share their gifts so all can benefit, by being more faithful and productive Christians.”
“At Food & Fun, we’ll hear from senior leaders who facilitate Bible studies or adult Sunday School classes. They’ll share what they are doing and let others put a face to a name. Hopefully, some will feel comfortable learning more about church activities and grow their committment to Christ and Galilee. Sometimes just asking or inviting someone to join in opens a door—and that is our calling.”
“Active involvement in church has meant a lot to my wife Linda and I,” Ferd explains. “You might not believe it, but we’ve attended Galilee for 40 years. We taught Galilee’s preschool and middle school kids for a good while, and later adult Sunday School for ten years. Linda headed up the children’s acolyte programs over the years, and we have been greeters, ushers, and counters. I was Stewardship Chairman back in the 80’s.”
“Church memories are among my best memories—good times in the old building when we had young children, Christmas concerts, building the new sanctuary and gym, taking the Sunday School kids to downtown D.C. to distribute food and toiletries to homeless.”
Early birds share a joke before Wednesday’s Prime Timers lunch.
“Our kids are grown and we have grandkids now. Things change! My current focus of attention at church is with Prime Timers. We are currently studying Mark on Wednesdays over lunch. We get rather deep in discussions because we have four or five members who have led Bible Study groups for years, but sometimes the participants who “know less” offer even more. For tough questions and difficult scriptural themes, we ask Pastor Jason and Pastor Matt to lead our sessions. There is a strong bond of fellowship and for just about any topic we deal with, someone has an insight or spiritual discernment that enables the entire group to grow in faith.”
“I’d love for you to join us.”