Tuesday Bible Study

Celila Holton offers a Tuesday Bible Study at 1 pm on announced dates. Women learn to study the Bible and enjoy fellowship. Please contact the church office for more information.

Celila Holton has been teaching this group for many years, and you will enjoy this class.

Sermon Series on the Book of James

Between September and December, Dr. Johnson preached a sermon series on the entire book of James. She concluded the series on Christmas Eve.

Wise Ones Still Discern

On December 4, 2016, a North Carolina gunman entered a Washington, D.C. restaurant to “investigate” some information he read on social media. He believed a “fake news” story was real news and went to self-investigate and administer justice. I don’t want to be an alarmist, but this is scary stuff.  Websites, such as snopes.com combat Internet fake news every day so you can check snopes.com to find out if the news you read and receive in email is fake news. However, social media users currently invent and perpetuate fake news faster than reasonable folk can correct and debunk it.

Some newly elected officials who’ve mastered manipulation used fake news throughout their campaigns to score the votes from the unsuspecting and easily deceived. My advice is do not believe everything you hear or read. To combat fake news, you can also support reliable media sources.

Traditional news agencies have been greatly impacted by the shift to online media, but old style reporting by educated professionals continues to be a social necessity. When layoffs impact a news producer, the fact-checkers and proofreaders are often the first to receive pink slips. However, they have essential roles. We need reliable and trustworthy news.

The invention and proliferation of fake news is actually not new news. King Herod famously circulated some fake news after the birth of Jesus. When the Magi entered the land of Israel in search of the One the stars indicated would be king, Herod learned of their border crossing and requested that they meet with him in Jerusalem. Upon hearing that the foreigners followed the star of the King of the Jews, Herod the Great deposited some fake news, “Wonderful, and when you find him return to me with the baby’s GPS coordinates [my paraphrase] that I too may go and worship him.”

The first century headlines would have read, “Herod Seeks Baby to Worship.”

However, something about Herod strikes the wise men as peculiar. They discern that they should travel another route home and neglect to mention the cradle location to anyone as they journey on their way.

The angel of the Lord provides Joseph with the real story. Herod plans to murder the baby. Therefore, “Gather up your family and get out of town fast. Don’t stop running until you cross the Sinai [my paraphrase]and enter into Egypt.”

Fake news stories in our own day might also become a matter of life and death. We must be diligent, and we must pray for discernment—which is one of the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit. Truth exists, and the spiritually discerning can still find it and spread it.

Herod sought a baby;  that much of the fake news story was true, but he was selfish and prideful and wanted to kill the boy rather than worship him.

Thank God for the discernment of wise men (and women) who can still find Jesus and discern fake news!

NC Christian Church Ordains Teddi Therkildsen at BSCC

On November 6, Regional Minister Rev. John Richardson, guest ministers, Rev. Dr. Laura Johnson (Chair of the Commission on Ministry for the NC Christian Church), and famiily members participated in the ordination service of Teddi Therkildsen. Teddi, who is a retired RN, earned her Master of Divinity (M. Div.) degree from Andover Newton Theological School.

The NC Commisson on Ministry approved Teddi’s ordination and congratulates her on this achievement and calling.

Following the ordination, the BSCC Christian Women’s Fellowship (CWF) hosted a beautiful and delicious reception in the church Fellowship Hall.

Teddi lives in North Carolina and Conneticut, and she will have dual Standing with the United Church of Christ and the Disciples of Christ.

Ordination of Teddi Therkildsen

The church celebrates with Rev. Teddi Therkildsen, whom we ordained along with the NC Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) on November 6, 2016.


Ordained ministers present and participating in the laying on of hands included: Rev. John Richardson, Regional Minister of the NC Christian Church (Disciples of Christ); Rev. Dr. Laura Johnson, Senior Pastor of Broad Street and Chair of the NC Christian Church Commission on Ministry; Rev. Dr. Frank Haggard, retired former pastor of Wolcott Congregational Church; Rev. Carolyn Fleming-Sawyerr Vidant Pastoral Care; Rev. Brenda Harris, Staff Chaplain of Carolina East Medical Center and member of Broad Street Christian Church.

The worship service included music by Minister Angel Lorton, Guitarist Susan Namowicz, and the BSCC Chancel Chorus; video affirmations by Teddi’s UCC church–Wolcott Congregational in Conneticut; and the UCC Committee on Ministry. Other speakers and presenters included Elder A.B. Mills of BSCC as well as Teddi’s husband Roy and members of Teddi’s family.

The Broad Street Christian Women’s Fellowship provided a beautiful and delicious reception following the ordination.

School for Congregational Leadership at Barton College

Barton College invites lay leaders and people interested in becoming Disciples of Christ commissioned ministers to attend the School for Congregational Leadership overseen by Dr. Rodney Werline.

The Fall Term for 2016 includes two course offerings: Introduction to the New Testament (Dr Rodney Werline is the instructor from 8:30-11:30 am) and Disciples of Christ History and Polity (Dr. Richard Harrison is the instructor from 12:30-3:30 pm). The class dates are: 8/27, 9/10, 9/24, 10/1, 10/22, 11/5, 11/12, and 12/3. Each course costs $200. For more information, please contact Dr. Werline at rawerline@barton.edu .

People interested in becoming Disciples of Christ ministers must also contact the Regional Minister to begin working with the Christian Church in North Carolina Commission on Ministry.

Animals in the Bible

animalsofbibleLions, tigers, and bears. Oh my. For the remainder of the summer, Dr. Johnson continues preaching from several of the animal texts in the Bible. The planned August texts are:

  • 8/7, Mark 1:13—Wild Animals
  • 8/14, Matthew 10—Sparrows
  • 8/21, Matthew 12:40—Big Fish
  • 8/28, Matthew 17:24-27—Small Fish

Join us. We have themed worship and music, too.



Isaiah Bible Study

The Disciples group elected to study the book of Isaiah next—we are just in the mood for one of the prophets.

While Isaiah’s vision and the specific time and place of his ministry (750-700 BC in Jerusalem), we will be able to see foreshadowing of the birth and life of Christ and even apply elements of this text to our own present days.

Let’s hold up one of the greatest images in Isaiah as it occurs quite early in the text: “Come let us ascend the  mountain of the Lord… he will judge between the nations and he will decide for many peoples. And they shall beat their weapons into ploughs and their curved swords into pruning hooks. Nation will not lift a sword against nation nor will they learn war anymore.”

My Word Biblical Commentary says, “Yahweh’s purpose has been a part of Israel’s revealed tradition throughout. Abraham was called to be a blessing to all the families of the earth (Gen 12:3b). Israel was called to be a ‘kingdom of priests’ (Exod 19:6). … What all nations learn when they flow to the summit of the mountain of Yahweh will eliminate war among them. The age of peace will come.”

The role of God’s people in God’s city is what the rest of the book explains. “Righteousness and justice have already been shown to be non-negotiable requirements. Willingness and obedience have been named as needed qualities. Faith, patience, and humility will be among the virtues taught to the servants of Yahweh.”

“This great image contains nothing of political dominance or of nationalism. The appeal of God’s city is religious and universal.”

This is a vision that we all need, and I am already liking this next study. Plan to join us in September.

Disciples Bible Study Group Concludes MiddleEast Study

On July 20, the “Disciples Bible Study group” (which Elder Emeritus Irma Tingle organizes and for which I serve as teacher) completed our protracted look at the relationship between the people of Israel and the indigenous people of Palestine. Our study of the Middle East began with a thoughtful reading and monthly discussion of The Source by James A. Michener. This took several months (perhaps more than a year to complete).

While at the 2015 General Assembly in Columbus, Ohio, I obtained additional materials related to the Middle East at the Disciples of Christ/UCC Global Ministries booth and attended special worship and educational sessions related to this important region of the world and began studying them.

When we completed The Source, the Disciples group moved our schedule from the first Thursday of each month to the first and third Wednesday of each month so we could absorb more material more quickly.

Then, using various teaching methods and materials, I taught the group all that I knew from personal experience during my two trips to the Holy Lands, what I gleaned from reading and tracing sources of recommended material, and what I gained from Global Ministries Mideast Initiative. Then, our grand finale included a SKYPE interview with the Disciples of Christ Kairos Palestine missionary, Rev. Jeff Wright.

Rev. Wright expressed how impressed he was that our New Bern Disciples had taken up this weighty topic and spent so much time trying to understand the history of the region (from cave man days to the present). He was pleased that we have a sincere interest in the issues, and most importantly, the people.

While none of us can say that we are experts on-call for the State Department, the people who attended the Disciples Bible study group can tell you that we know a great deal more than the average US citizen about the Middle East, and we are equipped to continue learning and carefully listening to the voices on all sides. If you want a summary of our class, just ask around the church, but not if you are in a hurry.

Commissioning of Jamie Haddock

BSCC #36 (Jamie Haddock) 013cpscrCROPPED

On July 12, 2015 our church had a special commissioning service for Jamie Haddock as the Youth Minister of Broad Street Christian Church. Our church board sent a letter to the Christian Church in North Carolina (CCNC) Commission on Ministry (COM) in June and requested this commission. Jamie met with the COM on July 7, and they unanimously approved her commission.

All commissioning (previously known as licensing) is only applicable to the current church in the current role. Commissioned ministers meet with the regional COM every 1-3 years (as set by the COM) to renew their commissions.

Jamie continues to be under care of the COM as a student in the online ministry certificate program of Lexington Theological Seminary (a Disciples of Christ seminary). Upon completion, Jamie will seek additional approval of the COM for ordination. Thus, Jamie is choosing now to use the title “Minister Jamie Haddock” until her ordination.

The church celebrated the commissioning with a special worship service during which Dr. Johnson preached from 1 Corinthians
3:10-15 about the responsibility of each person to be a skilled builder, building upon the foundation of Jesus Christ. Following worship, the church enjoyed cake and ice cream in the Fellowship Hall. Special thanks to Laurene Gaskins for coordinating the cake.

Congratulations to Minister Jamie Haddock and to Broad Street Christian Church for making this partnership possible by providing a sacred space for new ministers to practice ministry.