BeFree Alton Family Letter (August)

Hello BeFree,

Every other month the elders and I write a “family letter” to share about what is going on behind the scenes and to take a look down the road at all that will be happening in our church family. We hope that this quick look will help keep you in the loop in the months to come.

  • -  Baptism Sunday – Baptism is a beautiful, joyful and symbolic celebration where someone who has put their faith in Jesus Christ publically declares that faith. Next Sunday, immediately after the service, five people in our family will be taking this obedient step of faith. Join us in the courtyard to celebrate all Christ has done in calling them to himself.

  • -  Last Summer Hangouts – This summer our church hosted a number of unique events ranging from hikes to firework displays. If you missed these gatherings, we still have two more opportunities:

o Next Sunday (August 11th), we will be traveling down to Portsmouth’s Prescott Park to enjoy a free theater production of “Beauty and the Beast.” The play starts at 7:00 but plan to arrive early as spots fill up quick. Bring a picnic dinner and small donation to support the play.

o On August 25th we will hold our annual end of summer party. We are still working out the details for this event, but keep your ears open for more information in the weeks to come.

  • -  Home Groups Starting – As we enter a new school year, our home groups will begin to meet again, starting the week of September 8th. All of our home groups will begin the year by focusing on the spiritual gifts; what they are and how we can use them to the glory of God and the good of the church. If you are not a part of a home group, now would be the perfect time to join! Look for more information on how to join a home group on Sunday, September 8th.

  • -  Summer Intern – About a month ago, we announced that our elder and worship leader, Rob, was going to step into the role of “intern.” Rob has already co-taught a 4-week evangelism course on Sunday mornings in July, begun his BA in theology at South African Theological Seminary and is, today, beginning a four- week sermon series on the book of Titus. We are thankful for the opportunity to continue to benefit from Rob’s ministry and are excited to see how God grows him through this obedient step of faith.

  • -  EFCA Report – In June, Olivia and I had the opportunity to attend the EFCA National Conference. This gathering of pastors, missionaries and leaders from across our denomination met for a time of worship, encouragement and handling of practical matters. This was my first time to sit under the leadership of our denomination and I came home thanking God for the group of churches he has called us to partner with in the advance of the Gospel. To read my full report on the EFCA National Conference, please visit the “what’s new” section of our website (

    Our prayer is that God would be glorified in all we do as we seek to glorify him by loving him, loving others and making disciples. We pray that God would use these upcoming events as well as our normal rhythms of gathering and scattering to help our church family accomplish this goal in all we do.

    On behalf of the elders and myself,

    Ben Ruhl, Pastor of BeFree Alton

    Elders: Everett Clark and Rob O’Blenis