Hey there, Friendship Family!

In the Christian life, gratitude is a virtue to be planted, watered, dressed, and harvested. Gratitude gets at the very essence of what it means to be created, finite, fallen, redeemed, and sustained by the God of all grace.

Again and again throughout the Old Testament, especially in the Psalms, gratitude — giving God thanks — is the fitting response to his gracious acts of deliverance for his people. It is profound and enduring gratitude, among other things, that Christ’s sacrificial death and triumphant resurrection summon in the born-again heart.

As stated last week, scripture is infused with thanksgiving to God for all of His gifts to us, even in the midst of suffering. Remember 1 Thessalonians 5:18, “Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.”  Beloved, it is easy for us to focus on what we do not have, to “complain in all circumstances” rather than give thanks. And yet God’s will for us is to give thanks.

A prerequisite for giving thanks is seeing the gifts that are before us. Through mindful, nonjudgmental awareness of the present moment, our eyes can see the beauty and goodness in each moment of life. When we see God in his creation, moment-to-moment, our hearts naturally respond with gratitude and joy. Likewise, awareness of God’s presence in all things leads us to gratitude.


As I move on, I want to thank you for your generosity in our Generosity & Gratitude Month! Last Sunday, we raised just over $2,000 for the Nehemiah Project of LA. Praise God. We will match what you gave and give the Nehemiah Project $4000 from the Friendship Family!


This Sunday, we will support Church Planting efforts in the United States. Did you know we are facing an interesting time in our history? We need more churches in the United States! Churches are closing at alarming rates, and the number of unchurched/unsaved people is rising DRAMATICALLY! Never has there been a greater need for more churches than right now.

The vigorous, continual planting of new churches is the single most crucial strategy for the numerical growth of the body of Christ in a city and the continual corporate renewal and revival of the existing churches in a city. Nothing else—not crusades, outreach programs, parachurch ministries, growing megachurches, congregational consulting, or church renewal processes—will have the consistent impact of dynamic, extensive church planting.

Through my work in Transformation Ministries and the Orange County Southern Baptist Association, I have become aware of the need for continual church planting efforts. As a result, I actively support, mentor, and partner with church planters. Currently, I serve as a mentor to Jeremey Whittington, who planted his church, Prayer Center Church, just before the pandemic and is now replanting his church in this post-pandemic reality with help from the North American Mission Board (NAMB). I am also partnering and consulting with Pastor Brian Wallace, who will plant a new church, Connect City Church, in Fontana in January 2023. Church Planting Matters!

New churches best reach new generations, residents, and people groups! So this weekend, we will support the church planting efforts of Transformation Ministries and the North American Mission Board. Whatever you give, we will match and send one check from Friendship. We will feature a special video this Sunday! Remember, we have special envelopes and a special giving designation in our electronic giving that is live today entitled church planting. Make all checks payable to Friendship!

As I move on, I invite you to check out this week’s episode of OVERTIME. Join Pastor Rodney, Pastor Jaron, and me as we talk about the two Spiritual Disciplines I preached about this past Sunday: Confession & Worship. I think these were the best two chapters of the book. But, I will be honest, I don’t think the sermon did the book material justice. So, I invite you to read these chapters, watch OVERTIME, and tell me what you think.

Also, don’t forget to read and reflect on Psalm 51 or Psalm 139. As you read one or both of these passages, consider God’s Character, the importance of Communion with God, and the priority of Confession. That was this week’s post-sermon challenge.

This Sunday will be our last Sunday in this series! We will talk about Guidance and Celebration!

The next Side by Side Couples Ministry Session will take place tonight, Friday, November 11th, at 7pm via Zoom. This group studies the book You and Me Forever by Lisa and Francis Chan. The topic for the upcoming session is “Parenting to the Glory of God!”  The link to the class is provided in the written update. If you have any questions, please get in touch with Deacon Hilton McDaniel at (949) 652-1489 or email Sheila McDaniel at [email protected]. To join the session, go HERE. They look forward to you joining the class.  

As announced last week, we are partnering with the Association of Black Cardiologists for the annual Spirit of the Heart health education and equity events for 2022. This is our fourth year doing so. We had a great event last night in our Community Leaders Forum here at Friendship. Tomorrow those who have participated in the CHAT Program will complete their training. These individuals represent Orange County Advocates from several churches, including Friendship. How exciting!

Then, on Sunday, November 13th, after the 8:00 and 11:30 am services, the Friendship Health Ministry and Association of Black Cardiologists (ABC) will have a mini health fair in the quad here at Friendship! There will be health screenings, health education, healthy snacks, and medical providers to help answer some of your health-related questions. Don’t miss this opportunity to check in on how you manage your health at every stage in life!

New Members, don’t forget that we will also have an In-Person New Members Reception for all New Members this Sunday, November 13th. If you have joined Friendship since March 2020 and have never attended an In-Person New Members Reception, this event is for you! It will take place during Ex Hour from 10am to 11am in the Carrington Building Rooms 214-216.

Attention, Men of Friendship. The next RHEMA Men’s Fellowship occurs on Monday, November 14th, at 7pm. This in-person meeting will take place in the Multipurpose Building at Friendship! Food will be provided.

Brothers, please join us and our special guest, Pastor Rodney Friend, Executive Pastor of Operations. Pastor Rodney will motivate us in our theme, “STRENGTH: Men United & Unashamed ~ Knowing Where Our Strength Comes From!” and give insights into who he is as a man, minister, member of Friendship, and his new role as executive Pastor.  Please register HERE  so we can plan accordingly for food and set up.

We are excited to announce that we will reopen in-person Children’s Ex-Hour (Sunday School) from 10:00am-11:00am and Children’s Church at 11:30am service on Sunday, November 20th. Children’s Sunday Services are for children Pre-K (age 3)-5th grade.  Additionally, the Mommies with Babies class will return during Ex-Hour (10-11am) for mothers and their babies 0-2 years old.  We are excited to have children back in worship and bible study, don’t miss our first Sunday Funday on Sunday, November 20th, when we welcome them back!

As we prepare for the Thanksgiving Holiday, I want to make you aware of two things related to Thanksgiving:

⚫ First, we will have our annual Thanksgiving Food Basket Give-a-way on Saturday, November 19th, at 11am. We will distribute baskets on a First Come, First Served basis. So, if you or someone you know needs a Thanksgiving Food Basket, you are encouraged to show up Saturday, November 19th beginning at 10am.
⚫ Secondly, please note we will broadcast our Thanksgiving Day Service on Thursday, November 24th, at 10am via our social media platforms. We pray you will join us!

As I close, today is November 11th, and November 11th  is Veterans Day! Happy Veterans Day to ALL Veterans! And yesterday, November 10th, was the Marine Corp 247th Birthday! Happy Birthday, Marines!

To all of our Veterans, we want you to know how much we appreciate your service to our country. We hope we will never take for granted the many blessings God has given us in this country and will always be grateful to those who selflessly serve us in the United States military.

In 1 Peter 4:10, God’s word tells us that we “should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms.” You have certainly done exactly that with your honorable and dedicated service. We thank God for you and for all you do for all of us as your serve our country. You and your family are regularly in our prayers, and we pray that God will richly bless and reward you.

General Church things to remember:
United & Unashamed: God’s People United in Mission, Ministry, & Mandate
1 Corinthians 12:12-27 ESV; Romans 1:16-17 ESV

Expressing Thankfulness for God’s Grace  & Mercy
II Tim 1:9, John 1:16, Titus 2:11, II Cor. 12:9, John 1:14, Eph 2:8-9, II Peter 1:2

Make sure to follow us on our social media pages for upcoming content. For Facebook, that’s @FriendshipBaptistChurch. For Instagram, YouTube, and TikTok, it’s @wearefriendshipchurch.

⚫ IN-PERSON EX-HOUR: In-person Ex-Hour meets each Sunday from 10am to 11am. We now have two adult classes meeting in person on campus, along with a Young Adult Class. They meet as follows:

  • Adult Class One (Sanctuary): The team teaching in the sanctuary includes Lady Karima Curry, Pamela Jones, Deacon Demetrius Linebarger, Melanie Porter, Vivian Randolph, & Deacon James Shelby
  • Adult Class Two (Carrington Building Room 217): The team teaching in the Carrington Building Room 217 includes Le Shon Archer, Deacon Rick Archer, Karen Ammons, Gwen Matthews, and Rev. Phil Yoder.
  • Young Adults Class (Carrington Building Rooms 207-208): This class is designed for those aged 18-35.

We invite you to stay after the first service or come earlier for the second service to attend Ex Hour in person.

If you’ve recently become a member of Friendship or are a member who has never attended the New Members Class, we invite you to attend a new session starting on Sunday, October 2nd. Over eight weeks, this class teaches what we believe about fundamental Christian doctrines, including Salvation, the Trinity, Baptism, and the Lord’s Supper. In addition, this class provides a good foundation on key doctrines in the Bible. Join us at 10 a.m. on Sundays; we meet on the 2nd floor of the Carrington Building, Room 209.

EX HOUR: Virtual Ex-Hour meets weekly on Sundays via ZOOM. Join us for class at 10am via this link HERE.  

YOUTH EX HOUR: Our youth Ex Hour takes place during our designated EX Hour time via Google Meet and in person. Yes, it’s a hybrid approach! Parents, please encourage your students to join youth teachers for this biblically fun opportunity to learn God’s Word, connect with others, and grow. To join Youth Ex-Hour, follow the link HERE.

CHILDREN’S MINISTRY VIDEO: A weekly Children’s Ministry Worship Video is provided to keep our children connected, encouraged, and worshipping! It is available through our website HERE or the Friendship YouTube Channel HERE.

WEDNESDAY Prayer Day: Join us each Wednesday for Prayer. We pray at 6:30am, 12pm, and 6:30pm. To connect with our prayer services, please follow this link HERE or dial +1 (413) 418-4274 and use the PIN 287683504#.

FBC FOOD BANK OPEN: The FBC Food Bank is OPEN with a new drive-thru system where our clients will receive a pre-packaged food box and a bag of groceries.  The Food Bank’s hours of operation are Tuesday - Thursday, 2:30pm-4:30pm.

COVID Recovery Kits:
We still have Covid Recovery Kits through Providence Health and the Yorba Linda Rotary Club. These kits help individuals who have been diagnosed with Covid-19 and are recovering at home. Each kit includes a pulse oximeter to monitor breathing, a thermometer, a box of masks, and a package of sanitizing wipes in a small canvas bag. If you or someone in your family could benefit from one of these kits, please call the church office and arrange to get one.

COVID Membership Assistance Fund:
We are STILL accepting COVID Membership Assistance Grant applications. If you are experiencing financial distress due to COVID-19, we invite you to apply for one of our $500 assistance grants. The guidelines are available HERE, and the application is available HERE.

Have you lost your favorite Bible, glasses, or a personal item while here at the church? If so, please contact the church office at 714-528-0990 or stop by on the 1st floor of the Carrington Building Monday-Friday between 9:00am-5:30pm or Sunday between 10:00am-2:00pm. There is a collection on the blue counter under the TV monitor.

Well, that’s it!

I love you, Friendship, But God Loves you BEST!

Continue to Stay Safe, Stay Healthy, and Stay Connected!

In His Service,
Rev. Kenneth C. Curry, Jr.
Your Pastor
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