Category Archives: Uncategorized

Have the Gift of Hospitality?

Do you have the gift of hospitality?  If so, you may be interested in learning about the role of an usher.

Ushers welcome people into the church and worship services with a friendly face.  They also assist our visitors with questions, materials and help them find a seat.

Everyone is welcome to learn more about this volunteer opportunity to display our value of hospitality! Join Gary Sager and Jim Boeke for an informational meeting Sunday, Sept 25 at 9:45am in the Gathering Space.

Women’s Tuesday Bible Study

Bible Study with Joanne Lodge

Tuesday mornings 10am.  This women’s Bible study is led by gifted Bible teacher Joanne Lodge and is open to women of all ages.  The group is currently studying the book of Romans.   New participants are welcome to jump in at any time during the study – no registration required.

When: Tuesdays at 10am
Where: Red room
Teacher: Joanne Lodge
Materials needed: Bible and paper for notes if desired.

Swimming at Cherry Hills

Part of our Fall Kick-Off Celebration is a Faith, Family & Fun event –swimming at Cherry Hill Park.  This is the official last day the pool is open.  No pre-signup needed, just pay at regular desk. $5.75 per person. Continue the Fall Kick-off celebration!

Where Do I Put It?

Where Do I Put It?

On Father’s Day, I got the chance to take a trip home to my home- town church (where I grew up) to surprise my dad. We knew where he sits every Sunday, so we filled his row with our family and my sister, and then waited for my parents to arrive. To see their faces walking in was priceless.

From far away, they could see someone was in their row and looked frustrated.

As they got closer, their puzzled look changed to “I think I know those people.”

Then as they approached and could see us up close, it finally dawned on them that the people sitting in THEIR ROW was THEIR FAMILY and that we were surprising them for Father’s Day.

Not only did we witness this take place—but those around us saw the entire drama play out as well. Many got a good chuckle out of it. It was awesome. I’d been wanting to surprise my dad like that for over a decade. 🙂

It had been almost 15 years since I’d been to worship at that church. It was barely the same church I’d left years ago. New faces, new system, new renovations, new stage… pews gone, chairs added, and entry doors moved! A happy, vibrancy filled the room that wasn’t there before. What I thought to expect was not the case at all. It was so different! Including minor details like…where do I put my money?

We came prepared for the offering—and then it never happened!  I asked my husband, “Did you see an offering? Or baskets or plates or trays?” He replied, “Well, it said in the bulletin where to put it.”

Ugh. I didn’t read the bulletin. I was so caught up in the moment with my family that I never read through the entire thing.

Not a big deal, but a minor hospitality detail.

You may wonder why it seems we sometimes repeat the same things every Sunday. The truth is—from one week to the next, the makeup of the congregation can be completely different. Are they new? Are they returning after a long absence? Are they visitors from out-of-town? Did they grow up here but came back for short visit? Is this their first Sunday back post-COVID?

But we try to hospitable, which sometimes sounds like we’re repeating ourselves if you are a regular attendee. Children’s Church, Offerings, Connect Cards, Bulletin Response forms, location of the restrooms… these are all things that not everyone knows about.

I’ll admit I was nervous to return to a building I’d spent the majority of my younger years in—nervous we’d go in the wrong doors or my kids would make a scene or the baby would have a blow-out and we didn’t know where to change her or that we’d be late after our 90- minute drive and have to walk in after the service started and not be able to find a seat!  It’s good for me to remember that all these points of anxiety might be someone else’s points of anxiety when they enter the doors of our church.

I believe at the core of hospitality is removing the anxiety of entering a foreign place! And sometimes that means repetition for the natives. 🙂

Leah Carolan
Director of Worship & Media


Did you enjoy this article? Did you laugh, cry, or learn something new?  Let Leah know.

    LIKE JESUS app

    This next season at Cedar Hills, we’ll be focusing on grow more and more into the likeness and image of Jesus.  The “Like Jesus” app is a valuable resource we’ll be using as a church as we embark on this journey.  This app contains resources and studies that you can complete with your small group and others at Cedar Hills.

    Download the App

    Android devices

    Apple/iOS devices

    After joining the app, join the Cedar Hills Community Church group with code CEDA-2782.

    Bonus! There will be a drawing for those who get the app! We’ll be drawing names live in services in August.

    Red Sand Sunday 2022

    Our church is joining with Chains Interrupted to fight human trafficking in the Cedar Rapids area.

    Chains Interrupted is a local nonprofit that fights human trafficking through Awareness, Prevention, and Advocacy. They are there for survivors when they are ready and able to come out of a life of trafficking, with advocacy and support as they heal from complex trauma. Because Human Trafficking is happening right here in our community, raising awareness is critical. By raising awareness, we may be able to prevent it from happening to one more of our precious young people, who are greatly at risk.

    July 30th is World Day Against Human Trafficking and Chains Interrupted will be raising awareness about human trafficking by partnering with the Red Sand Project.

    The Red Sand Project is an on-going, worldwide collaborative effort to raise awareness of human trafficking. Participants fill sidewalk cracks with red sand which signifies the 98% of people victimized by human trafficking who fall through the cracks. That’s over 40 million people.

    Red Sand Sunday is a way for our church to help Chains Interrupted kick off their Red Sand Event by filling the cracks in our sidewalks and driveways with red sand. This is opportunity to start a conversation with those we love about the reality of human trafficking in our community. It will also raise awareness through social media to everyone in your sphere of influence which can educate them and ultimately help prevent others from falling prey.

    We encourage you to mark your calendars and plan on picking up a red sand kit in the Gathering Space July 24.  Take the sand and sidewalk chalk home –pour it in cracks of your sidewalks and write the suggested messages on your sidewalks.  Post it on social media with the hashtag #redsandsunday.

    You are also invited to join Chains Interrupted for the Red Sand Project on July 30th beginning at 10am in Newbo where they will also be hosting speakers including a survivor of human trafficking.

    VBS Mom’s Connect Event

    Dropping off kids at VBS? On Monday and Wednesday, moms are invited to Lindsey Ungs‘ house at the corner of Stoney Pt and 1st Ave for food and drinks.  Enjoy some conversation and meeting other moms.  105 Stoney Point Rd NW, Cedar Rapids, IA 52405. It’s the beige house on the corner of the 4-way stop. The driveway is on 1st avenue. You are welcome to park in the driveway or on the street!

    Blueberry Blitz for Lake View Camp

    Fresh from the farm in Michigan! Order bulk blueberries and support Lake View Camp.

    A friend of Lake View Camp has offered to provide Lake View with as many fresh Michigan blueberries as they can sell, delivered straight to Pella from his family’s 4th generation farm.

    Blueberry Pick-Up Options:

    1. YOU PICK UP – Saturday July 16 or Saturday July 23 at Pella First Reformed Church
    2. YOU PICK UP – July 16 at Hope Reformed in Parkersburg,
    3. OR *BEST OPTION* we’re setting up a special bulk pickup of all the Cedar Hills orders to be brought to the church on Sunday, July 24.

    Orders forms are available at the Welcome Center or online here. Check are made out to Lake View Camp and due upon ordering.  Mail your order and payment directly to Lake View camp.