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Posts by Todd Paben

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Hoping for Lament

Last Sunday we began a new sermon series here at MDC - Lament | Hoping for Help. As a staff member, I have had the opportunity to talk with Paul Vroom about what his burdens are for the sermon series. And as we have talked, my heart has grown excited. I feel a burden for men, women, and children of MDC to hear this series. I am excited for the opportunity to have my own br...

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2017 Budget

On Saturday, December 3, the Elders and Deacons of Missio Dei Church called covenant members and regular attenders to a congregational meeting. The purpose of the meeting was to discuss how the Lord has been working through the church this past year and what we are anticipating for 2017 and beyond. Here were some of the things that were shared at that meeting:...

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2016 Advent Offering

Missio Dei Church seeks to join the season of forming traditions as well. Just as God was crazy generous in sending us the long-awaited Messiah, Jesus Christ - we too seek encourage men, women, and children to be crazy generous this time of year as well. Starting this Sunday (and running through December 30) we will begin collecting our Advent offering for the following...

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Christ at the Core | Call to Worship

Worship begins with God. Serving within a theologically conservative church this statement would go unchallenged by many (and to God be the glory for that!). Many of us would be able to cite passages similar Romans 12:1 "I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiri...

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Christ at the Core of a Liturgy

In an effort to help Missio Dei Church understand why we do what we do on a Sunday morning, I will be doing a blog post every Friday. These blog posts will help show how Christ is at the center of the following; the call to worship, confession of sin, assurance of pardon, passing of the peace, and the benediction. ...

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Family Worship During Lent

Something we are looking forward to this year is having families worship together throughout this series. Our covenant children will be learning right along side us singing, reading scripture, taking notes, and entering into the large group discussion....

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Knit Together | A Lenten Preparation

Over the next seven weeks, we will be examining what it will look like for Missio Dei Church to be knit together as brothers and sisters in Christ as we prepare to go out and share the Good News of our Risen Savior and look forward to celebrating on Resurrection Sunday....

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Sermon Recap | Filled with the Fullness of Jesus

This past Sunday we read from Colossians 2:8-10 in which we heard from a sermon titled Filled With the Fullness of Jesus. This section was launching a new “orbit” of Jesus-Centered Thinking for us with our series The Core. Over the next few weeks we will be thinking about our thinking and discerning how does Scripture challenge us to be more mindful of others and ourse...

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'Twas the Story Before Christmas

On Sunday night, December 13, the children of Missio Dei Church told the story of our coming Savior before friends, family, and the church. As the children sang and read Scripture, there was also artwork that displayed the story. Below, you will find our children's portrayel of the birth story through the means of art!...

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Attitude of Gratitude

Believe it or not, but the rush of the holidays is quickly approaching. Holiday decorations are out in full force in local stores. My Instagram feed shows people already setting up their Christmas trees and listening to Christmas music, and the commercials on television boast of the newest gadget that your loved one just has to have. The Christmas season is filled with str...

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The Coming King

The Coming King is a series of four Christmas messages that will explore the everyday humanity and glorious death of Jesus. In this Advent series we will see why we can hope in him, how Jesus is the power of God to transform our bleak situations, how the glory of the Son of God calls our hearts to genuinely soul-satisfying worship, and what difference it makes in our lives...

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VBS Offering

This past Sunday we made an announcement regarding a special offering that will be taken during VBS next week. Amanda Paben was able to have a conversation with Missy Camiola regarding the biggest need for Grace Gardens. Missy expressed a huge need to be able to send the children of Grace Gardens to school. The cost is $250 per semester (or $500 for the entire year). It is...

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A Solemn Promise

It's hard to beleive that just about a week and a half ago we all gathered at the Welcome and Installation Service with the PCA. There was a lot that happened that evening. We had a great time of singing together some of the great hymns that tell of the Gospel of Jesus Christ in both new and old ways. We witnessed the installation of the Teaching Elders and Ruling Elders. ...

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New Morning Mercies

Every now and then I read something that just resonates so much with me that I cannot help but share it! I have been reading a new devotional by Paul Tripp called "New Morning Mercies: A Daily Gospel Devotional". This morning I was doing some catch-up from the past few days and Paul's writings on April 12 just reached to the inner chambers of my heart. I sat next to my wif...

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Preparing to Gather | February 15, 2015

This week we will be studying Exodus 20:15 in a sermon titled "Promise Keepers". If you missed last sermon in this series, click here. ...

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Kids Toys and The Gospel

"I am continually reminded how much our kids need our undivided attention, on their terms, and not ours. This communicates volumes in terms of humble service which is the essence of the Gospel. You want your kids to understand the Gospel? Get on the floor and play with them. Then when you speak of God coming down and condescending to our weakness they’ll have a picture o...

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Getting Back to Exodus

This week we are headed back into our journey through Exodus. Whenever we step out of a series for an extended period of time, in this case our Together series, I like to give a brief recap of where we are at in the story....

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Children's Church

As far as my recent experience in ministry is concerned, the area in which this balancing act has been most felt is in the area of our ministry to children in the church; namely, what should we do with young children during times of public worship?...

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Preparing for Kingdom Rock VBS

Over the next few weeks leading up to Vacation Bible School, I hope to share with you some how to’s that may be helpful for you and your family. This week we will be exploring an answer to the question “How do I invite my neighbor to VBS?” ...

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How to Pray for Kingdom Rock

This week I am going to address how to pray in the weeks leading up to vbs. I would like to share five ways you can be praying for our first Vacation Bible School. These will also be things that we will be praying for tomorrow night at Elder-Led Prayer!...

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Leadership Community | Leaders Only Recap

Last Saturday, July 26, the Elders, Deacons, and Ministry Leaders sat down to talk through the following agenda: 2014 Budget Discussion, Missional Outpost, and Ministry Evaluations. We wanted to inform you on what took place during that meeting so that you can not just be informed for knowledge sake, but to be in prayer for this team of people and the church as a whole as...

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Evening With The Camiolas | A Recap

On Sunday night, July 13, we had the privilege to have our missionaries John & Missy Camiola come out for a BBQ and an evening of sharing what God is doing in their lives over in Jos, Nigeria. Here is how the evening went down:...

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Preparing to Gather (Good Friday 2014)

It is hard to imagine just a handful of years ago, when businesses shut down early as churches opened their doors on the Friday before Easter for an afternoon memorial of Christ’s crucifixion....

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T4G Recap 2014

Last week I had the blessing and priveledge to travel down to Louisville, KY with Pastor Paul Vroom to the Together For the Gospel Conference. This year the theme was "UnAshamed" - primarily talking about evangelism....

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Holy Week Numbers

As of Sunday, Palm Sunday, the Church has officially entered Holy Week. Many Christians will spend this week pondering the last week of Christ’s death...

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Jonah's Prayer in Context

If you were in church last Sunday, you would have heard a sermon titled, "A Prayer From the Belly" by Joe Paglia. If you were like me, you were taken back when Joe read Jonah's prayer from inside the great fish in its context. This is a beautiful prayer when you read it in its entirety. So for those of you who would like to see the verses from Psalms that Jonah prays, see ...

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Guilt & Grace l Resources

During the next few weeks, Missio Dei Church will be going through a series called "Guilt & Grace: Lent and the Heidelberg Catechism". ...

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Worship Songs 3

A while back I was blessed to help a buddy of mine, Vinnie Adams, record a CD of some worship tunes that were supposed to help serve the Church. We had done two projects before and figured things out through some trial and error. However, this particular project got me really excited at the time. I felt like we had the desire, equipment, and the vision to procude a really ...

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Confession: I Struggle to Listen

We must work at truly listening to others. Listening requires an intense interest in the other person. As Simon Kistemaker says: 'Listening is loving the neighbor as oneself; his concerns and problems are sufficiently important to be heard.' This requires eye contact and sensitivity to the other’s gestures and moods and silences....

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Family Hospitality (February 2, 2014)

On Sunday February 2, Missio Dei Church will be celebrating the profession of faith of Abigail Phillips and Lillian Bruxvoort as well as the baptism of Abigail Phillips. We have heard that there could possibly be upwards of an extra 30 people in attendance on Sunday morning. This is extremely exciting for us and especially for Abigail and Lillian as they will have their fr...

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Vision for 2014

On November 16, 2013 - members and regular attenders of Missio Dei Church attened Leadership Community to hear about what God was calling Missio Dei Church to in 2014. ...

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2013 Kids Christmas Program Video

Our 4th annual children's Christmas program took place on December 15 and it was a huge success.This was a retelling of the birth story of our Savior, Jesus Christ, from a different perspective. Here is what took place...enjoy!...

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Why Jesus Came

The reason Jesus became man was to die. As God, he could not die for sinners. But as man he could. His aim was to die. Therefore he had to be born human. He was born to die. Good Friday is the reason for Christmas. This is what needs to be said today about the meaning of Christmas....

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Family Hospitality

On Sunday, December 15, the children of Missio Dei Church will be getting up in front of friends and family to present Angels, Animals, and the Cross. As the kids are finishing up rehersing and preparing for their "big day", we too have some preparing to do for Sunday. ...

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2013 Advent Devotional

This devotional is to be used in conjunction with our Advent series “The Whole Story.” It is our hope that through this short devotional you will see the drama of Scripture unfold and the person and work of Jesus Christ will continue to transform your life to His glory....

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Crazy Busy Day in and Day Out

This week we will be taking a look at the typical day-in-day-out life and how we bring on our own busyness and how we create busyness for other people...

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A New "Weekly" Format

Starting this week, Missio Dei Church will no longer be sending out "Weekly Happenings in the Life of Missio Dei Church" through Constant Contact. Instead, we will now be sending out the "Weekly News" from The City....

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The Seven Most Important Things to Know About Money

"A more serious problem though is the reality that money so easily becomes our god, the thing we live for. I know, because I’ve lived that way before and am tempted to continue to live that way. The alternative is a much better way to live. And it’s the truth. Money is a gift from the real God. It is something we’re given to enjoy and steward." - Jamie...

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I Am Just Too Busy

Over the next few weeks I hope to flesh out some of what Kevin had to say in his book. I do not plan to summarize every chapter. What would the point of you be reading the book then? I will talk about the chapter(s) that have impacted my life most and I think will impact yours as well. This list includes things like: serving other, work & technology, kids, and how you can...

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Study Guides to Go

With the release of the complete study guide to the book of Acts, I have been asked by a few people if we will be printing those booklets again. This time around we will not be printing as trends within Missional Communities show that most people have some sort of smart phone or tablet that they use for studying or taking notes anyway. To save on paper, costs of printing, ...

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On Whales and Worship Lyrics

Consider Bonhoeffer’s message: whether your gifting runs toward hymnody or poetry, write lyrics that teach so much truth they can stand on their own. And then set them to music that magnifies their beauty. We, your congregants are slaves to our personal tastes. Teach us to crave corporately the better thingâ€"the Word rendered luminous by song, confessed by a tho...

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Feelings VS Truth

Michael Horton immediately asks the question then, "Is my transformed life the Good News?". He then points out the beauty of the Gospel - the fact that the Gospel has nothing to do with us, but has everything to do with what Jesus did on the cross. ...

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How To Pray for VBS

In my last post, I said I was going to be coming out with some various “how to” posts. This week I am going to address how to pray in the weeks leading up to vbs. I would like to share five ways you can be praying for our first Vacation Bible School....

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Mosquitos, Algae, and Worship

A recap of how the seventh annual all-church camping trip to Potato Creek State Park for Missio Dei Church. ...

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How To Invite People to VBS

Over the next few weeks leading up to our first Vacation Bible School, I hope to share with you some how to’s that may be helpful for you and your family. This week we will be exploring an answer to the question “How do I invite my neighbor to VBS?” ...

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The Lord Confirmed His Purpose

The following text is an excerpt from Pastor Paul Vroom's sermon "Our Faithful Lord" on June 23, 2013. This section of the sermon had numerous "amens" resounding from my heart. Enjoy!...

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An Answer to Prayer: How My Wife Brought Me To Tears

We find that most of us who have been converted have had someone praying for us, someone who carried us personally to the throne of God while we were unconverted. It seems to me that no one is so poor as an individual for whom not a single soul is praying, and who has no one who takes him or her personally and persistently to God in Prayer....

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Family Finances: Updated 2013 Budget

Last Saturday, May 18, we gathered as a body of Elders, Deacons, ministry leaders, and good ole fashioned healthy church members for what we call Leadership Community. During this meeting, we had two pieces to the agenda for the morning. The first was to talk about the fiances of the church and the second was to talk about our first ever Vacation Bible School. ...

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Would You Say That To

“We should never boldly proclaim into a microphone that which we wouldn’t have the courage to share with our neighbor. Often when we are gathered as the church in a safe place, we proclaim the greatness of God and the sufficiency of the Gospel. However, when we leave that safety, we are too often either apathetic or filled with unbelief in the things we profes...

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Singing Is More Than...

If you read my blog, follow me on twitter or Facebook, you would know that I have been slowly working my way through a great book, Rhythms of Grace by Mike Cosper. Last night I had the privilege to sit next to my wife, brew up a great cup of coffee, and read another chapter in this book. For years I have been trying to figure out answers to the following questions:Rhythms...

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Two [Free] Albums I Can't Stop Listening To

Very seldom do I come across an album where I look forward to hearing every song. I usually enjoy the popular tunes like everyone else and maybe one or two other tracks that resonate well with me. Within the last week however, to my surprise, I have come across two FREE albums that I am having a hard time not listening to. ...

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Using The City: Email Notifications

Without fail, around 3:00pm everyday I hear the “ping” go off. I can just about guarantee another email from The City. Yep, it’s another daily digest. As one who manages most of the content that comes out on The City, it is weird to get an email showing me all the emails I sent out throughout the day/week. While you may not be doing most of the posting, ...

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The Crazy Things We Do for Love

In my last post, I talked about how I love to read. I love to read lots of books, often at the same time. One of those books that I am reading is by Mike Cosper called "Rhythms of Grace: How the Church's Worship Tells the Story of the Gospel." As I am reading this book, I have come across a lot of different parts why I chuckle out loud at how he talks about Israel's disobe...

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Getting Back Into Acts

If you love to read and are anything like me, you love reading books. You find great joy in picking a book off the shelf and sifting through the pages as you sit down with a great cup of coffee, tea, hot chocolate…etc. Maybe, just maybe, if you are able, you might be reading a few books at once. This is often the case for me....

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Civil War Reenactments & Good Friday

Good Friday is a powerful day of remembrance. However, Good Friday is good only because Sunday eventually comes. As Christians, we must never look at the cross without thinking of the empty grave. Jesus’ suffering is inseparable from his victorious resurrection. There is a reason that the logo for Christianity is an empty cross: he did not remain upon it, but rose a...

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Lent: Giving Ourselves Up to Prayer Recap

Were you unable to make it to our Wednesday night lenten prayer services? No worries, while I will not be able to share with you what it felt like to experience the community and the presence of the Holy Spirit dwelling with us each week, I can at least share what we leared from Randy. ...

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Hymn Helps: How Firm A Foundation

At a quick read through of this wonderful hymn, you may think through to yourself, "Why didn't this song stay in the 1700's with all its 'thee's', 'thys', dross - what does that even mean?" However, as you read through each verse you will see themes from Scripture being sung which means we ultimately singing about the Gospel, the Good News of Jesus Christ. ...

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The End of Worship is the end of Worship

My point in writing this is not to just share a bunch of random quotes that I have been reading. My hope is to reorient outselves to our calling and mission. We come together "we are (re)made to be makers." As we prepare to gather this Sunday, would you consider taking time to read through what Pastor Paul Vroom has posted? Let these resources, by the power and help of the...

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Sermon Questions: 2/24/2013

Pastor Paul Vroom had three great questions from Sunday mornings sermon "Monday: Turning the Tables" from Luke 19:45-48. We pray that you would use these questions in your personal relationship with God, with your family, or your Missional Community. ...

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2 Words That Can Move You To Tears

I love to wake up early on Saturday mornings and read with a great cup of coffee. I am often walking around my apartment sifting through which book I want to dive into the next morning. Last night I was convicted that I just don’t dive enough into the right book... the Bible....

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Get Off Repeat...A Follow Up

A few Sundays ago, I asked the music team if they would be up for staying late after church to share a meal and learn some new songs. The team accepted the offer! We made our meal into the typical church potluck. After the meal we went back down into the sanctuary for the practice. ...

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Missional Community Training Recap

This past Saturday, men and women from Missio Dei Church gathered together to hear from Pastor Paul Vroom and Elder Nathan Phillips about what it means to lead a Missional Community. ...

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Get off Repeat

Introducing new songs is never easy. As a person who leads music for Missio Dei week in and week out, trying to teach people a new song is just simply awkward and often times scary. Introducing new songs to your church family would be like reading your term papers in college before your immediate friends and family. A lot of time and labor has gone into working on this pro...

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Praying for Megan

Megan McDonald was called to go to Cuba along with some other students from Trinity Christian College. During their time there, they will be doing some street evangelism, working with a nursing home, and working with a baseball ministry that serves kids. THis is a place where we will receive updates and prayer requests. ...

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2013 Family Finances

There was a proposed increase from 2012 to 2013. Some of those increases came from having a permanent place where we can now do ministry out of on a full time basis as well as rebuilding our savings account. We are also working harder at having fifty percent of what comes in goes right back out into the community. Those in attendance at the meeting unanimously affirmed the...

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If - Then Statements

Over the past nine weeks I have had the pleasure to walk with nine other men, as a part of our men’s ministry, on Tuesday nights through the book of Colossians. This truly has been a great study and has really opened my eyes to a new way of reading Scripture. I am learning that as I read I need to do more than just the “so what is he really saying here” ...

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Celebrating Advent

I recently came across this blog post from Bobby Gilles, communiation director for Sojourn Church, titled "What is Advent? Why & How You Should Observe It". I have been trying to figure out how or what to communicate about the Advent seaon. For some of us we have been celebrating Advent for years and have often found it to be a very worshipful time. For others, who might b...

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Be Thou My Vision

Perhaps one of my favorite versions of 'Be Thou My Vision' - done by some dear friends Greg Hartnett and Vinnie Adams. ...

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Liturgy Explanation: The Peace, The Word, The Meal, The Sending

The next installment in our "Liturgy Explanation" series. Here we will be taking a look at the Passing of the Peace, the Ministry of the Word, the Sacrament of the Lord's Supper, and the Benediction.. These pieces are powerful pieces with our time of gathered worship. ...

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Liturgy Explanation: Our Confession - His Assurance

The next installment in our "Liturgy Explanation" series. Here we will be taking a look at the Confession of Sin and the Assurance of Pardon. These pieces are powerful pieces with our time of gathered worship. For it is here that the church acknowledges their depravity, and is re-assured of the Gospel of Jesus Christ - who took alway all our sins. ...

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Liturgy Explanation: The Quieting and The Call

Some of you may or may not have been noticing that Missio Dei Church has been adding some new elements during our time of gathered corporate worship. We are continually praying and hoping that people will understand the connections between all different parts of the service on a Sunday morning. Everything on Sunday morning has a place and purpose. We hope that through this...

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Meet Ron Sanford

On Sunday August 22, Missio Dei Church had the pleasure to meet and hear from Ron Sanford, the Executive Director for To Every Tribe Ministries. ...

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Benediction - As You Go

Some of you may or may not have grown up in the church throughout your life. Some of you may understand all that we do on a Sunday morning during our gathered worship, some of you may not. I hope to explain to you what we believe about the word Benediction and share with you a song that will hopefully serve us to serve others with the Good News. We will be learning a song...

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