This Sunday is a HUGE day for our church. We celebrate three years of being a church “creating environments where people can meet and follow Jesus!” This has been our vision statement from Day 1. Where have these three years gone? I could tell you story after story of lives transformed because of Jesus and His tangible acts of love shown by our 217church family. I could tell you about a single mom who was baptized at our first baptism in the Washington Crossing River and sensed new hope in Jesus. I could tell you about a young woman who has recovered from an abusive past, discovered the grace of Jesus and is now pouring her life into young teenagers so they don’t have to endure the same struggles she endured. I could tell you about children who have found a relationship with Jesus. I could tell you about our Children’s and youth ministry that is ministering in places in Trenton that need to hear of Jesus. I could tell you of business owners and entrepreneurs who are now using their influence to bring people to Jesus because of 217church. We are a church where Every Story Counts!
“Then I said to them, “You see the trouble we are in, how Jerusalem lies in ruins with its gates burned. Come, let us build the wall.” Nehemiah 2:17
Here Are Some of The Ways God Has Used You
#1 141 Restored Lives – We like to say, we are the church for people who aren’t here yet. Here is the list of 141 names of people who we have baptized into a relationship with Jesus Christ. Starting a church is a covenant building experience. Revealing a sign of hope and love from a savior, who never leaves and always extends the hand of grace, is what we are about. When you read their names, it’s just print on paper, but truly they are lives and families transformed. I can’t wait for the next 141!
Phil Robertson, Christine Johnson, Crystal Morgan, Lynda Ferguson, Laurie Robertson, Sandy Rivera, Amanda Kline, Stephen Constantinou, Andrew Constantinou, Michelle Watson, Danny Baumann, Butch Hamilton, Josh Rivas, Jill Larsen, Melissa MacCollum, Caitlin Condit, Lisa Flores, Lily Mahaney, Liza Vargas, Jamie Vargas, Arlynet Tovar, Steven Gotthelf, Kyle Graf, Diana Garcia, Sharon Geiger, Natalya Rivera, Juan Rivera IV, Howard Anderson, Brandyn Lichtenstein, Laura Shapanus, Bill Shapanus, Alyse Canciello, Monica Quiroz, Cristiana Galang, Becca Solis, Krista Galang, Andrew Albert, Joe Corso, Lilly Conn, Titus Conn, Kathryn Nieves, Mimi Kabia, Chad Nelson, Kristi Costanzo, Keith Cline, Katie Johnson, Terri Svecz, Sean Gordon, Alex Svecz, Collin Spurgin, Matt Spurgin, Lonzetta Rush, James Rush, Jason Kingsley, Gary Jakubicki, Sally Hutchings, Josh Schmalbach, Leonard Simon, Denise Stremlo, Mike Kirk, Chrisha Kirk, Mark Forman, Kevin Cordas, Shelly Cordas, Steve Cosenza, Debbie Cosenza, Dione Springer, Gabrielle Cobb, Luis Valdivieso, Toni-Ann Rotondi, Cristina Cobb-Adams, Anthony Anglin, Jason Flintosh, Nicole Jemine, Jason Parker, Gina Sparacio, Flynt Tuller, Flynt Jr. Tuller, Jill Brown, Jay Rodriguez, Pete Ruffini, Allie Guerrero, Jaime Vargas, Patti Ann Ridgway, Lauren Velarde, Corrine Hunsher, Sonny Esteron, Derek Sander, Deb Stewart, Willie Rivera, Cindy Chavez, Jhoi Ortiz, Katie Hawver, David Robertiello, Nick Labella, Lindsay Clayton, Sandra Lupo, Devon Smith, Michael Ettinger, Pollorn Sayasack, Jessica Rivas, Tiffany Rivas, Nick D’Mauro, Jeanie Leung, Cathy Szymanski, John Baldino, Racheal Jones, Eve Green, Maria Cobena, Liz Perez, Cathy Szyanski, Kathleen Contreras, Christian Servellon, Christina Baranowski, Daniela Vinci, Naylon Larane, Adrien Ong, Racquel Smith, Brittney Blackburn, Alcmenia Dunbar, Natalia Hernandez, Santina Hernandez, Corina Hernandez, Courtney Arbitell, Joclyn Hernandez, Dania Hernandez, Miriam Hernandez, Tsunami Martinez, Johanna Martinez, Kimberly Hopkins, Linda Monforte, Maria Rodriguez, Yolanda Drislane, Kristen Moore, Janet Russell, Trevor Jones, Sixto Irizarry, Shanera Hampton, Jessica Suessegger, Sherenne Simon, Alfredo Marin. Every Story Counts!
#2 People Finding Deep Relationships – In one of our 17 small groups that meet in 11 different townships, you will find people who are serving the community. On any given week, we have over 250 people meeting together, caring for one another deeply. We visit each other when in the hospital, we pray for each other, study the bible together and we take care of each other. We even have one group who paid off a person’s credit card debt to give them a fresh start financially. (Now you are saying…”I want in!”) Every Story Counts!
#3 Over 2 Million Dollars Worth of Generosity – In these three years over Two Million dollars has been given to the vision of 217church! Through generous hearts you have given to church planting, the next generation fund, provided for practical needs of countless people hurting in our community, provided a place for us to meet on Sundays, sent kids to camps, provided for all our equipment and empowered our pastors and staff to live and do ministry in the community. Your generosity is proving Every Story Counts!
#4 An Incredible Youth & Children’s Ministry – Each week 140 kids and youth hear about the love of Jesus through our dynamic 217kids and 217youth ministries. Psalm 46:13 says, “tell the next Generation this is God.” We have taken this to heart and are serious about making the next generation our #1 priority. We now have a partnership with Urban Promise in Trenton and are working hard to bring the Gospel of Jesus to students in Trenton through after school programs. It’s just the beginning of seeing our influence soar. They will write the story after we are off the scene and we are empowering them NOW! Their Story Counts!
#5 Over 430 People Every Weekend in Worship – Every week we celebrate big and our celebrations just keep getting bigger and BIGGER! We started planning this church in a living room with 20 people and now every week over 400 gather! We preach the word, worship passionately, pray boldly and we make it a HUGE celebration. We make a big deal of the Gospel of Jesus and every week over 50 people serve to make these celebrations happen. Our 217church co-worker team is nothing short of incredible! Week in and week out for 150+ Sundays, so many have heard about Jesus and are following him because of these celebrations proving Every Story Counts!
One Final Note:
I am humbled and privileged to serve as your pastor. I couldn’t have scripted it better. You are what I am proud of. You have made my life and the life of my family richer and full of meaning. We love you all!
Josh & Summer Lilly, Titus & Lydia
Join in The HUGE CELEBRATION This Weekend…
1) Two Huge Weekend Celebrations 9:30am & 11am at the AMC 24
2) Our 3rd anniversary party at our Youth Center at 3pm. (yes it’s 2/17 day!)
3) Finally, end the day with an evening baptism with our sister church, Element Church at Princeton Alliance Church.
This is going to be AWESOME!