Congregational Meeting! December 14!!

Every year, ECC gathers after a regular Sunday service in December for our annual congregational meeting. At the meeting the congregation will approve the annual budget and the slate of board members for the following year.  We will also hear from each committee about what has happened in the past year, and what they hope to accomplish next year. This year, the congregational meeting will be held on December 14th immediately following the service. Anyone is welcome to attend, but only members of the church may vote on anything being decided.

If you are a member or regular attender to ECC, please make plan to come.

See You There!!


But God (Showed Up)


Emmaus Christian Church is very involved in the Kairos Prison Ministry. Connie Beekman, one of our members, wrote an article about her experience leading the latest team into the Virginia Correctional Center for Women…


But God (Showed Up)

The Team Formation and Kairos #38 Weekend at VCCW

Early on, we sensed that things would be different this time. We were confident in feeling that way, in that each and every Kairos weekend always has its own flavor, texture, and color. However, we in the leadership, DETERMINED that this Kairos would be different. We set about organizing and planning and streamlining all the tasks and assignments of responsibility for the various aspects that would need to be covered by competent and compatible people. THIS TIME there would not be any confusion over who was to do what. Everyone will know their role and responsibilities ahead of time. Everyone would execute those duties assigned to them in an orderly and efficient manner. THIS TIME, the team will know well in advance what kind of time, emotional, and financial commitment they were making to the ladies on VCCW K38. Or….maybe not….

Well, this time WAS different – but not because of us. But God stepped in. But God showed up. But God took control. He accomplished all we ever could have asked for – and more – through broken vessels, rusty “tools”, and wounded healers. All prayers that God would use us, teach us, and stretch us to accomplish His purposes for the candidates of K38 were answered! We started with a potential team number of 34 – with every possible position filled, and then some. That number quickly went back down – and settled at 26, which is technically 6 people less than considered “ideal” for a full team. God knew beforehand who would be on the team. I gave that aspect of the weekend over to Him almost immediately. He chose a mighty army. As we say in one of the talks on the weekend – any one person, plus God, is an overwhelming majority. So, our diminished numbers were not at all evident in any of the activities in the community room or in the chapel. Each and every chapel experience, each and EVERY talk that was given, left us just looking at each other and saying “WOW!”. A good number of the talks were given by people who are new to our team, so their testimonies are ones we had not heard before. Therefore, the team was equally blessed right along with the residents by how appropriate the speakers’ stories were to the topics at hand. In fact, it will be hard to imagine anyone else being able to do a few of the talks nearly as well as the presenters did this time.

Regarding the participants, we had one lady come to a decision of saving faith on Saturday – her table gently led her to Christ. We had many who had spiritual breakthroughs and who re-dedicated themselves to Christ over the course of the weekend. We saw burdens laid down, true and active forgiveness begin for some, and saw how they learned to comfort and support each other in their spiritual healing process. Many of these ladies have NEVER been shown kindness, NEVER mercy, understanding of their situation, or acceptance of them as a person – and NEVER, NEVER unconditional love. Our mission is to Listen, Listen – Love, Love. Mission accomplished for this mighty team! The visual expressions of the outpouring of Christ’s agape love, plus how we have each received it ourselves and have made ourselves available to pass it on, never fails to choke us up or to change us. Us, who are used to being loved and blessed each day, are blown away. Imagine if we had NEVER had that experience in our lives – or, worse, had it and now no longer do, because of something we’ve done. Our sin nature is common to us all. God is no respecter of persons, or of our sins. One sin is just as heinous as another in the eyes of the Lord. So, even if we’ve not done the things they have done and even if we’ve not had the life they’ve had or chosen for themselves, we still hold our sin in common with them. We are all, hopefully, better than we once were – but none of us is better than someone else. That message was delivered and received. And, for that we are grateful to a loving and giving God.

Connie Beekman



Leadership At ECC

Emmaus Christian Church is led by a board of stewards. This group consists of the pastor, along with 12 others who are selected for a two year term. At the end of two years, the member may stay on for a second term. Each year at the congregational meeting, vacant board positions are filled by congregational vote.

Around October, the process of nominating new board members begins. While this is a common process and is coming to a close, I wanted to take a minute and emphasize what an important process this is for our church.

Now, if you are looking for a biblical model for church leadership, you will not find a “board of stewards” mentioned anywhere. The terms and offices set forth in scripture are Elders and Deacons. These leaders fill many of the roles that our BOS fills. Elder and Deacons in the New Testament filled the roles of leadership and care for the church. Elders were men who led, cared for, protected and taught the church. Deacons were selected to care for the physical needs of the members of the church. They in many ways are the hands and feet of Christ for the church members.

At ECC, the roles of BOS members are an overlap of both of these offices in scripture. They make decisions for the church, and also lead the ministry teams that carry out practical acts of service for the body as a whole.

Since these roles are similar, I thought it would be good to look at the qualifications for leadership in the church in the New Testament.

1 Timothy 3:1-13 has the qualifications for Elders and Deacons for the church.

“1The saying is trustworthy: If anyone aspires to the office of overseer, he desires a noble task. 2 Therefore an overseer must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, sober-minded, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, 3 not a drunkard, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money. 4 He must manage his own household well, with all dignity keeping his children submissive, 5 for if someone does not know how to manage his own household, how will he care for God’s church? 6 He must not be a recent convert, or he may become puffed up with conceit and fall into the condemnation of the devil. 7 Moreover, he must be well thought of by outsiders, so that he may not fall into disgrace, into a snare of the devil.

8 Deacons likewise must be dignified, not double-tongued, not addicted to much wine, not greedy for dishonest gain. 9 They must hold the mystery of the faith with a clear conscience. 10 And let them also be tested first; then let them serve as deacons if they prove themselves blameless. 11 Their wives likewise must be dignified, not slanderers, but sober-minded, faithful in all things. 12 Let deacons each be the husband of one wife, managing their children and their own households well. 13 For those who serve well as deacons gain a good standing for themselves and also great confidence in the faith that is in Christ Jesus.”


I could spend days unpacking and dissecting these verses, but I just want to focus on the first statement he makes, “if anyone desires to the office of overseer (translated as pastor/elder/ect. ) he desires a noble task”.

The reason I mention this is that being a leader in the church is a noble task. There is nothing mundane about the calling to leadership. It is not an easy task, but nothing that comes easy is worth doing. Leading other people is more than voting at a meeting. It requires prayer, study, care and commitment. The board meetings only happen once a month, but the role of a board member may require meetings outside of the monthly meeting. Leading a group of other people, and meeting with members who have questions or concerns are also often needed. It should not be considered mundane, or something that we just sign up for either. It is a noble task. It is a calling that we are prepared for and selected for by the Lord, working through the congregation. To summarize, it is hard, but worth doing.

So, if you are a member of ECC, you have a responsibility to look around you for people you feel have been gifted by God to lead, meet the qualifications for leadership in the church, and may be called by God to lead this body. If so, nominate them for a position. Also, if you feel that you may be called to lead in a particular way at ECC, feel free to nominate yourself for a position.

Additionally, if you are a member, or regular attender at ECC, you have a responsibility to pray for the leader selection process, that God would send the right people to lead the is church, and care for the flock here at Emmaus.

His servant and yours,



Youth group parents meeting.

On Sept 7 after Church, several parents of youth at Emmaus met with myself, and our education chair to discuss some upcoming events for the youth this fall. I am grateful for the opportunity to hear from parents how to care for their kids more effectively.

There was one major change that came out of the meeting that I felt was very fruitful. That was that we will now have youth group from 5-7PM on Sunday evenings. It will still be at the Holt’s house and will include a light meal every week as well.

One upcoming event is our annual trip to Carter Mountain Orchard for apple picking October 26. We will leave the church at 1:00PM. After our apple picking, we will stop at Christian’s Pizza for supper on the way home. There is no charge to go, but bring money if you want to bring home some apples.

Parents are welcome to come!


Labor Day Parade!!!

The Evangelism Committee is sponsoring a table at the Labor Day parade in Powhatan next Monday, September 1. Please make plans to arrive by 10 to help set up. We will be giving out water bottles, and will have a drawing for a few gift cards as well.

Come and interact with our neighbors, make some new friends and share the Love of Christ with everyone who is there.



Privileged…. By Julie Newton

       Privileged: having the rare opportunity to do something that brings particular pleasure.  I could not think of another word to describe what my job at ECC has meant to me than that one.  It may be an odd word for many to understand.  But it is one that I am reminded of every single week as I step into the classroom to teach the children, the future of our society, the tweens at ECC.

Oddly enough, I never wanted any children.  It was never in “my” plan; I was never super comfortable around kids.  I would play with my cousins, babysit for friends and neighbors, but never felt a connection to have my own child one day. Many, many years ago, I worked within a Library system and I was asked to take over a job dealing with kids, in the programming field.  I have to say that I was very out of sorts and felt like I was never going to be content in my job again!!  But the opportunity was too good to pass up and I figured I would learn something.

Well, low and behold, I learned that God had other plans for my life.  God began to direct me into this new career path that I had never considered or had passion for.  It made me want a child of my own, my whole world turned upside down.  Once I did have a child, my sweet daughter (who is now 9), there was nothing else that I desired out of my life. I truly believed God was done with His plans for me.  My every available moment was spent with her.  Once she reached the age of 1, I decided to stop working to focus on my family.  That was another one of God’s plans for us, one that we never saw coming!!  We often wondered why He was taking us down that path.  As my daughter grew, we decided that we would home school her, now that was never in “my” plans!!!  (Five years later, I love every minute of being a home school mom)!

At the same time I got offered this amazing job at ECC as the Children’s Ministry Leader.  I have to be honest; I was a little out of my comfort zone.  Yes, by now I had worked with kids for 6 years, loved the job I had at the Library, I loved helping with VBS and such at church.  But could I really teach kids about the Bible, when there was so much that I needed to learn myself?  I doubted, but God kept pointing me in the direction to take the job and to just trust in Him.  I did and now years later, I cannot tell you all how this job makes me feel!  Each week that I teach, I am inspired by their generation.  I can see that they are a group of believers. A group that is not afraid to defend their faith to their peers.

It is amazing to me that God has placed me into this profession, He trusted in me to handle this job and He keeps me on my toes.  I love when I see the kids’ faces and something just “clicks”, they “got it!” I often whisper to myself.  What a feeling!!

I have learned many things through the classes that I teach.  I have seen some of the kids grow up into these wonderful God loving and God fearing, teen ages.  Lessons that I was able to teach them, they have been able to go out and teach others. I get goose bumps thinking about all of the “clicks” I have seen on their faces, when they finally understand God’s purpose for them and for their life.  What an incredible feeling!!! I look forward to many more years of teaching God’s Word to the future of ECC.   We have a strong generation of believers coming out of ECC and I could not be more proud of them all!

After sitting and reflecting on my past…where I was 15 years ago and where I am now.  I am so thankful to God and all of those who had the faith in me to fulfill His plans for my life, those who kept encouraging, and those who never gave up!  I am very blessed and privileged.

If you find my journey inspiring and want to get out of your “comfort zone.”  Consider teaching a class at ECC, we have several age ranges that are available to teach.  Until you do it, you cannot imagine what you are missing.

 Proverbs 22:6 ESV     Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.

Julie Newton


It’s ALL About Jesus!!!


Ultimately it is our hope that in all that we do at Emmaus, we are pointing ourselves and others to the only one who matters in this world~Jesus Christ. He is the one who lived a sinless life, died the death we deserved, and rose again to prove His victory over Satan, sin and death. We want to see many more people come to know Him, to worship Him, to serve Him, and to tell others about Him. If that is not clear to you as you visit our church please let someone know. If you have any questions, concerns, or suggestions please tell us.