Volunteer Friday #33

Volunteer Friday #33

Every other Friday we take a moment to introduce you to someone in our community who serves in one or more of Watershed's many volunteer areas: GreenHouse/Shed StudentsSunday TeamsCatapultBloc Leading, etc. The featured volunteer will then select someone he/she would like to see highlighted next.

This week, meet Wyatt!

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WYATT CROMER

Volunteer Area(s): 

Band

Why did you choose to volunteer in your area(s)? 

I love to play the drums, I love playing with other musicians and I love doing both of those things at church. I also love to see God work in others both in the message and lyrics of music, as well as the melody and beat of the music itself. 

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What has been one of your favorite moments as a volunteer? 

My favorite moments as a volunteer are during the unexpected times. For example, I might feel encouraged with anticipation about a song that the band is going to play on a given Sunday. At first, I may think, “What a great song this is going to be! This song could really speak to others and is especially relevant to this week’s series and message!” During the Sunday when I’m actually playing, I end up getting hit with the whole core of the song like a ton of bricks.

I feel like my expectation about what I thought the moment of that song “was supposed to be like” on Sunday resulted in a dramatically different outcome. Instead of the song impacting only somebody else in a meaningful way, it ended up additionally impacting me in ways that I wasn’t able to see until I finally played the song that 100th time.

If you could use only one word to describe our Watershed community, what would it be? 

Family.

Describe your perfect day in Charlotte: 

Anything that involves family, friends, free food and fellowship.

 

NEXT I'D LIKE WATERSHED TO FEATURE WILL RICE. 

The Potting Shed | Kids & Screens

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Parenting is really hard. Parenting these days is getting even harder. Questions like “What is a Snap story?”, “Where are the parental settings on Fort Nite?”, and “ Your friend posted what on Instagram?” are becoming all too common. And these are even the easy questions! They get more difficult or confusing from there. Our families need all the resources we can get!  

This was a big part of the impetus that brought me to Potting Shed last month. My name is Jessee Eppley. I am a Licensed Marriage and Family therapist at One12:Counseling in the Ballantyne area, as well as a parent and avid supporter of GreenHouse. I was given the opportunity to meet with fellow parents to discuss what it means to raise kids in a world that is quickly becoming inundated with social media, device expectations, and a variety of other digital concerns. I was grateful to have the chance to share a bit of my professional expertise with my community. It was also amazing to hear the insights and stories you all brought to the table.  

The fact is that this topic is one that will not be going away any time soon. So, to that end, we recorded this most recent installment of Potting Shed, for any parents who were not able to attend the event. We wanted to make sure this information is available to anyone who might benefit from it. The link is below:

Potting Shed | Kids & Screens

One of the many things I loved about this past Potting Shed was the idea that none of us have to feel alone in this whole parenting gig. Many of the questions and ideas expressed were around how we as a community can encourage one another when setting boundaries and exposing our kids to a world outside of the screen. I think this is the best next step for our group. 

I think it is a great conversation and one that will continue to come up more and more as the days go by. I look forward, as a fellow parent and resource, to continue being part of that conversation, and I want to end by reminding you… It takes a village to raise kids, and we have one heck of a village here at Watershed Charlotte. You are not in this alone.  

Grace and Hope.  

Jessee Eppley

Volunteer Friday #32

Volunteer Friday #32

Every other Friday we take a moment to introduce you to someone in our community who serves in one or more of Watershed's many volunteer areas: GreenHouse/Shed StudentsSunday TeamsCatapultBloc Leading, etc. The featured volunteer will then select someone he/she would like to see highlighted next.

This week, meet Vangie!

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VANGIE WHITLEY

Volunteer Area(s): 

Seedlings - Babies/Toddlers

Why did you choose to volunteer in your area? 

Life is hectic. I always have a to-do list and no matter how much I do the list never seems to get shorter. I have an ailing elderly parent in assisted living that requires a lot of my time and I never really know when I’ll get a call needing me. As I’ve gotten older I’ve realized I have very little control over things that I deal with on a daily basis and being flexible with my time is a must. It’s chaotic, unpredictable and extremely stressful, but nothing more than what everyone else dealing with elderly parents do.

For me, there’s nothing more fulfilling than holding a baby, their innocent little eyes looking right up at you and the sweetest little smile on their face. It’s calming, rejuvenating and always makes me smile. I love children and just being around them. This is a needed service for parents to have an opportunity to continue their spiritual journey and I’m happy to help make that possible. (I know everyone is thinking, "But what about when that sweet little angel isn’t very happy and the crying can be heard throughout the church?" Well that’s when love and patience takes over and again, you just have to smile!)

What has been one of your favorite moments as a volunteer? 

Sitting on the nursery room floor with 3 littles ones sitting on me and we’re all smiling and playing.

If you could use only one word to describe our Watershed community, what would it be? 

Welcoming.

Describe your perfect day in Charlotte: 

The day begins without a to-do list, my mother is doing well and there’s no place I have to be. It would be springtime, my favorite season when everything is new and blooming, just minus the pollen! I can put a smile on the face of someone along the way, there’s time to play with Rudi, my Westie, and time to share the sunset and a glass of wine with my partner Cindy.

 

NEXT I'D LIKE WATERSHED TO FEATURE WYATT CROMER BECAUSE... HIS MUSIC AND VOICE ALWAYS TOUCHES ME SPIRITUALLY. 

Volunteer Friday #31

Volunteer Friday #31

Every other Friday we take a moment to introduce you to someone in our community who serves in one or more of Watershed's many volunteer areas: GreenHouse/Shed StudentsSunday TeamsCatapultBloc Leading, etc. The featured volunteer will then select someone he/she would like to see highlighted next.

This week, meet David!

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DAVID MONTS

Volunteer Area(s): 

EVERGREENS

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Why did you choose to volunteer in your area? 

Evergreens is fun (read easy) age.  They are independent but listen to you most of the time.

What has been one of your favorite moments as a volunteer? 

Watching all of the children grow and develop. They change so much from the time they first get into the classroom til the time they leave. Just being really proud of who they are becoming.

If you could use only one word to describe our Watershed community, what would it be? 

Freeing.

Describe your perfect day in Charlotte: 

Waking up with our 19-month old and cooking some breakfast on a Saturday while momma and our 11-week old get a little more sleep. Walking to the park and maybe grabbing a sour ale on the way back at Sycamore Brewery if the little ones are not too cranky. Let's say its mid-spring so we get a baby sitter to put the kids down and go enjoy a baseball game at BB&T park. :) 

 

NEXT I'D LIKE WATERSHED TO FEATURE: Vangie Whitley

Volunteer Friday #30

Volunteer Friday #30

Every other Friday we take a moment to introduce you to someone in our community who serves in one or more of Watershed's many volunteer areas: GreenHouse/Shed StudentsSunday TeamsCatapultBloc Leading, etc. The featured volunteer will then select someone he/she would like to see highlighted next.

This week, meet Brian!

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BRIAN MILLER

Volunteer Area(s): 

Bloc Leader…for what seems like forever.

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Why did you choose to volunteer in your area? 

Connecting with other men can be a challenge, even on the surface. I love to see individuals just be together, talk about whatever and connect however. I’ve learned so much from the eclectic group of men I have the privilege of spending time around. Life is messy, why do it alone?

What has been one of your favorite moments as a volunteer? 

Any time someone shares a ‘weight or burden’ and then exhales afterward as if the weight has been lifted or lessened by speaking the burden into the air. People rarely let their guard down…and when the mask is removed people are imperfectly beautiful. That’s a pretty cool experience.

If you could use only one word to describe our Watershed community, what would it be? 

Centering.

Describe your perfect day in Charlotte: 

A day out at the park with the kids and wife followed by some ice cream…sans whining and tantrums of course. My kids are special people and sharing them with my wife is energizing.

 

NEXT I'D LIKE WATERSHED TO FEATURE DAVID MONTS, 'CAUSE HE'S AN INTERESTING CHARACTER.

Volunteer Friday #29

Volunteer Friday #29

Every other Friday we take a moment to introduce you to someone in our community who serves in one or more of Watershed's many volunteer areas: GreenHouse/Shed StudentsSunday TeamsCatapultBloc Leading, etc. The featured volunteer will then select someone he/she would like to see highlighted next.

This week, meet Kevin!

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KEVIN SNYDER

Volunteer Area(s): 

Watershed Band, Bloc Leader (Men's Bloc)

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Why did you choose to volunteer in your area? 

As a musician, music and worship quality was really what I looked for in a church.  So when I first attended Watershed in September 2010, the music was the first draw.  Within two months of my first service, I joined the band.  At that stage of my life, I was really going through a lot of personal change, working through some serious matters, and I was alone.  The Watershed band embraced me and the friendships that grew out of that truly gave me hope.  Many of those, now 8 years later, are life-long friends.   In fall 2009 I took the Bloc Leader training class and met Brian and Dre Miller.  Brian and I ended up starting a Men's Bloc soon after and we've been going strong for 7 years!  

What has been one of your favorite moments as a volunteer? 

The men in our Bloc has seen a lot of amazing things occur through the years.  But we've also had some tragedy and hurt.  For me, the support that these men have for those in our group that are going through the hardest times in life is incredible.  It makes me proud to have friends that are willing to sacrifice time, skills, money, and a listening ear at the drop of a hat.  We're truly a brotherhood that has each other's back no matter what. 

If you could use only one word to describe our Watershed community, what would it be? 

Life-giving.

Describe your perfect day in Charlotte: 

My wife Lindsay and I make breakfast at home, egg sandwiches with bacon, coffee and catch up on one of our shows.  We then take a nice long walk with our 1 month old, Logan, maybe down the greenway.  We'd grab lunch in Plaza Midwood, then head to a brewery for an "afternoon-cap".  I'd end the day performing with my band Radio Lola, with our amazing Watershedder lead singer Dani Engle at the helm rocking the venue!

 

NEXT I'D LIKE WATERSHED TO FEATURE BRIAN MILLEr, MY BLOC LEADER COHORt AND BEST FrIEND HEre IN CHARLOtte!

Volunteer Friday #28

Volunteer Friday #28

Every other Friday we take a moment to introduce you to someone in our community who serves in one or more of Watershed's many volunteer areas: GreenHouse/Shed StudentsSunday TeamsCatapultBloc Leading, etc. The featured volunteer will then select someone he/she would like to see highlighted next.

This week, meet Brady!

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BRADY NICHOLSON

Volunteer Area(s): 

Watershed Band, former Tear Down member (thankfully, no more with Watershed's permanent home)

Why did you choose to volunteer in your area? 

I hopped in to the Tear Down team after I'd been attending about a year. O'Neil reached out to me, and I felt that it was time to invest a little more in the community since I was receiving so much good from Sundays and the Blocs I had started to get into.

After 2 1/2 years, I was asked to attend the Catalyst conference in Atlanta with the group that was signed up. I'm so glad I said yes because, not only was it the exact fueler and refresher that I needed, I met and connected with a larger group from Watershed that I had yet to. It was pivotal. That weekend, I fessed up to Taryn that I'm a musician, and the jig was up. I immediately joined the worship band, and have loved being a part of it ever since. To loosely quote Conor Oberst, "Music (art) is a key way for me to make sense of the world and how I interact with it." That absolutely includes how I connect with God, experience the intricacies of the Divine, and hear Truth. I suppose if my vibrating guitar strings act as conduit for others to enter into to that kind of Communion, then I'm in the right place.

What has been one of your favorite moments as a volunteer? 

One of my favorite moments as a volunteer was the first Band/Tech Christmas party that I was invited to. It was so cool and inviting to get closer to my peers and see how being real and relaxed with each other fosters better collaboration. From then, there have been countless moments that I've been grateful for. An honorable mention is when we started the first service one day, and a member who will remain unnamed missed the entire first song because they were tending to some early morning "business".

If you could use only one word to describe our Watershed community, what would it be? 

Woven.

Describe your perfect day in Charlotte: 

My perfect day in Charlotte? Man, that can include a lot. I love to go on long urban bike rides. I love passing through Uptown, especially during business hours, then head South and East admiring the architecture of the city's homes and landscapes. And I like to top it off with a tasty brew from any one of the fine breweries we have in town. Oh, and giving out free hugs would make it all a perfect day.

 

NEXT I'D LIKE WATERSHED TO FEATURE KEVIN SNYDER BECAUSE... HE WAS ONE OF THE FIRST SMILING FACES THAT SOUGHT ME OUT TO INTRODUCE HIMSELF, AND WE'VE BEEN GREAT FRIENDS EVER SINCE! AND HE SLAPS A MEAN BASS!

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Volunteer Friday #27

Volunteer Friday #27

Every other Friday we take a moment to introduce you to someone in our community who serves in one or more of Watershed's many volunteer areas: GreenHouse/Shed StudentsSunday TeamsCatapultBloc Leading, etc. The featured volunteer will then select someone he/she would like to see highlighted next.

This week, meet Ted!

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TED ROSENAU

Volunteer Area(s): 

I started playing acoustic guitar in the band during Watershed's second year and jumped into electric guitar about five years ago, ruining many eardrums in the process. I started running sound in the Actor's Theater days as well and am passionate about bringing a full, live sound to Sunday mornings.

Why did you choose to volunteer in your area? 

Music is a natural area for me and I love that I can, either accompanying or mixing the Watershed band, help create the kind of environment where folks can feel free and moved. 

What has been one of your favorite moments as a volunteer? 

Any morning we get to unleash some John Mark McMillan or other rock and roll monster is a good morning. I will never forget, however, starting off a song in the wrong key. Maybe that's why they don't let me sing anymore! Playing the first morning at our new home was a really special thing for me. 

If you could use only one word to describe our Watershed community, what would it be? 

Good magic. Family. Home. 

Describe your perfect day in Charlotte: 

Any day with bikes and breweries with good friends is a good day. Add some tacos and it might just be perfect. 

 

NEXT I'D LIKE WATERSHED TO FEATURE BRADY NICHOLSON BECAUSE... HE IS PROBABLY THE MOST "WILL GO OUT OF HIS WAY TO MAKE SURE YOU'RE OK" PERSON I KNOW... WITH AN EXCELLENT BEARD TO BOOT!

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Volunteer Friday #26

Volunteer Friday #26

Every other Friday we take a moment to introduce you to someone in our community who serves in one or more of Watershed's many volunteer areas: GreenHouse/Shed StudentsSunday TeamsCatapultBloc Leading, etc. The featured volunteer will then select someone he/she would like to see highlighted next.

This week, meet Gwen!

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GWEN SAUNDERS

Volunteer Area(s): 

I currently play in the band. In the past, I’ve co-led a Her: Grow Bloc and served as a reading buddy at Shamrock Gardens.

Why did you choose to volunteer in your area? 

Music is how I best process and connect, and the worship is what really drew me to Watershed when I first visited – almost seven years ago! It is a blast to play alongside such a talented and authentic group of people.

I was part of a Her: Grow Bloc for a few years before serving as a Bloc Leader. I experienced firsthand how transformative it can be to have a safe place to connect with other women beyond the surface, and I wanted to share that.

As for being a reading buddy, kids are just fun! Being around them reminds you what's important in life.

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What has been one of your favorite moments as a volunteer? 

Getting to be a part of something bigger than myself.

If you could use only one word to describe our Watershed community, what would it be? 

Gracious.

Describe your perfect day in Charlotte: 

A fall day, when the weather is perfect for a run around the booty loop! 

 

NEXT I'D LIKE WATERSHED TO FEATURE TED ROSENAU BECAUSE... (1) HE IS KNOWN TO WORK RADIOHEAD LEADS INTO WORSHIP SONGS AND (2) HE LITERALLY VOLUNTEERS FOR EVERYTHING!

Volunteer Friday #25

Volunteer Friday #25

Every other Friday we take a moment to introduce you to someone in our community who serves in one or more of Watershed's many volunteer areas: GreenHouse/Shed StudentsSunday TeamsCatapultBloc Leading, etc. The featured volunteer will then select someone he/she would like to see highlighted next.

This week, meet Liz!

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LIZ THOMAS

Volunteer Area(s): Formerly teardown, but now will be a traffic controller! I’ll get to put my directionally challenged self to the test. I hope we get those cool handheld lights like those people on the airport runway. 

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Why did you choose to volunteer in your area? 

I like to sleep in. :)

What has been one of your favorite moments as a volunteer? 

Seeing all the Watershed community gather and catch up after each Gathering. So many hugs (and lots of plaid)!

If you could use only one word to describe our Watershed community, what would it be? 

Open. I believe Watershed embraces everyone from all walks and stages of life. We pour love into everyone and everything that we meet. 

Describe your perfect day in Charlotte: 

That’s a tough one. I would have to say April 25th because it’s not too hot, not too cold, all you need is a light jacket.

 

NEXT I'D LIKE WATERSHED TO FEATURE GWEN SAUNDERS BECAUSE... SHE'S EXTREMELY TALENTED, QUITE LOVELY, AND A BADASS!

Volunteer Friday #24

Volunteer Friday #24

Every other Friday we take a moment to introduce you to someone in our community who serves in one or more of Watershed's many volunteer areas: GreenHouse/Shed StudentsSunday TeamsCatapultBloc Leading, etc. The featured volunteer will then select someone he/she would like to see highlighted next.

This week, meet David!

DAVID BELL

Volunteer Area(s): Tear Down Team (soon to be part of Parking Team)

Why did you choose to volunteer in each of your areas? 

Being a part of smaller church communities in the past that were very dependent on volunteer involvement, I learned quickly that the church, by its nature, functions when it is predominantly about giving and provision as its purpose instead of receiving. 

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What has been one of your favorite moments as a volunteer? 

Visiting with new acquaintances while volunteering. They always help us out!

If you could use only one word to describe our Watershed community, what would it be? 

In-process (yes I added the hyphen to convince myself that's one word)

Describe your perfect day in Charlotte: 

Sept 24th (kidding)! I gorge myself on brunch at some dainty nouveau restaurant that I'll have to own up to later, go to WWC for a run while Christen hits the rock wall, my buds and I mosh pit with strangers to a bluegrass or jazz band, then we drive home sweaty with pico de gallo hot dogs from Carlos at 36th & Davidson in terrible need of electrolytes and a plan for how we can't keep doing this to our bodies anymore.

 

NEXT I'D LIKE WATERSHED TO FEATURE LIZ CROSBY!

Adventure Awaits: Camp Tekoa 2018!

Adventure Awaits: Camp Tekoa 2018!

WATERSHED SUMMER CAMP AT CAMP TEKOA

Watershed is excited to announce our second year of summer camp experiences for children and students ages 7-17!  Your child is invited to spend a week (or half week depending on age) with us at Camp Tekoa, a beautiful camp nestled in the mountains of Hendersonville, NC. This camp is a beloved summer camp of some of our Watershed GreenHouse/Shed Student leaders not only because they attended the same camp as children, but because they have been sending their own kids there as well for the past few years. We have tested the waters and we know you will love this place!

This Watershed summer camp experience is sure to be unforgettable for your child. Children will get to experience God in the context of nature and enjoy community with their fellow GreenHouse and/or Shed Student friends. Plus they are going to have a ton of fun given all the amenities and activities at Camp Tekoa. From arts and crafts to ziplines, swimming and campfires, adventure awaits your child!

Are you new to the whole camp thing? Never fear! Camp Tekoa offers ways to send your little campers email during their time away and they even have secured photos posted throughout the week so you can follow along with your child's journey!

Although registration will be done directly through Camp Tekoa, we ask that you respond to Watershed Children's Pastor Becky Santoro before registering so we can keep track of which Watershed families are also taking part in camp and help resource you with possible carpooling/transportation and child roommate request opportunities. Fill out this form to express interest and get in touch with her!


WATERSHED CAMP TKO WEEK 8: JULY 29TH-AUGUST 4TH, 2018

MINI CAMP (Ages 7-9): There is an option for first time and young campers to spend just half a week at camp. These shorter sessions give your new camper a taste of everything and might be more cost effective. Cost is $270.
FULL WEEK CAMP (Ages 8-17): This is the classic camp experience. From the thrill of the zipline to various lake activities and other adventures, your elementary student is sure to have an unforgettable experience! Cost is $570. 

A minimum $50 non-refundable and non-transferable deposit by electronic check, Visa, Mastercard, Discover or American Express is required online to reserve a camp session. The full balance for camp must be paid by May 1st, but payments can be made between February and May to make it less of a financial strain.
 

Volunteer Friday #23

Volunteer Friday #23

Every other Friday we take a moment to introduce you to someone in our community who serves in one or more of Watershed's many volunteer areas: GreenHouse/Shed StudentsSunday TeamsCatapultBloc Leading, etc. The featured volunteer will then select someone he/she would like to see highlighted next.

This week, meet TJ!

TJ SULLIVAN

Volunteer Area(s): Bloc Co-Leader, Tear Down Team

Why did you choose to volunteer in each of your areas? 

I got involved with tear down to be a part of the effort it takes to have our services on a Sunday. It's not a simple task to set everything up and tear it back down again each Sunday, but many hands make light work and I wanted to contribute to that! I jumped in to a men's bloc to build new relationships and have a place to be vulnerable and honest. Over the years that involvement morphed in to a co-leading scenario currently which I've enjoyed sharing with a couple other guys. 

What has been one of your favorite moments as a volunteer? 

Watching our church adapt to new locations (I've been a part of 3 moves and 3 unique spaces) and overcome those challenges to still create a welcoming environment has been very enjoyable. It's been fun to watch the logistics of what we're setting up and tearing down and how that all comes together throughout those different spots. 

If you could use only one word to describe our Watershed community, what would it be? 

Grace

Describe your perfect day in Charlotte: 

A morning on the couch with my wife and some coffee, a walk with our dog Finley, a bike ride on the greenway to a brewery capped off with dinner and a fire pit night in the backyard!

 

NEXT I'D LIKE WATERSHED TO FEATURE DAVID BELL BECAUSE... HE'S THE ROCKSTAR COORDINATING EVERYTHING TO DO WITH TEAR-DOWN!

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Volunteer Friday #22

Volunteer Friday #22

Every other Friday we take a moment to introduce you to someone in our community who serves in one or more of Watershed's many volunteer areas: GreenHouse/Shed StudentsSunday TeamsCatapultBloc Leading, etc. The featured volunteer will then select someone he/she would like to see highlighted next.

This week, meet Paul!

PAUL PEARL

Volunteer Area(s): Production and helping facilitate a QCB Bloc

Why did you choose to volunteer in each of your areas?

I had done Cafe Team for a couple years then was working weekends so had to take a break. After that I decided to try something new so I joined the Production Team. You spend several hours on a Sunday morning with the team so it gives you more opportunities to get to know people more than just a hello and a handshake. I joined the men's morning Bloc to try to build some deeper relationships and figure out what spiritual growth looks like in my life - it's not something you get much of an opportunity to do on a daily basis as a dad with a couple young kids. 

What has been one of your favorite moments as a volunteer?

I just enjoy meeting the other people on the Production Team each time that I serve and getting to know a little bit about each of them. 

If you could use only one word to describe our Watershed community, what would it be?

Liminal

Describe your perfect day in Charlotte:

My favorite thing to do is walk through my neighborhood in West Charlotte with my family. Or go to one of Charlotte's great neighborhoods like NoDa or Elizabeth.

 

NEXT I'D LIKE WATERSHED TO FEATURE TJ SULLIVAN BECAUSE... I HAVE REALLY ENJOYED GETTING TO KNOW HIM IN OUR QCB BLOC.

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Volunteer Friday #21

Volunteer Friday #21

Every other Friday we take a moment to introduce you to someone in our community who serves in one or more of Watershed's many volunteer areas: GreenHouse/Shed StudentsSunday TeamsCatapultBloc Leading, etc. The featured volunteer will then select someone he/she would like to see highlighted next.

This week, meet Allen!

ALLEN WALLACE

Volunteer Area(s): Worship Band, High School Bloc

Why did you choose to volunteer in each of your areas?

I chose to volunteer in the band because the music was what initially attracted me to Watershed. Everyone on stage seemed very authentic, and the quality was great. I decided to be a part of the High School Bloc because youth group was an important part of my life growing up in church. I actually went to college to be a youth minister, but now that plans have changed, this gives me an opportunity to pursue that dream in a different capacity. 

What has been one of your favorite moments as a volunteer? 

Singing Whitney Houston's I Wanna Dance with Somebody during the Stogies and Stilettos series, two years in a row! Also, being on stage during a baptism service, and experiencing that up close is really cool.

If you could use only one word to describe our Watershed community, what would it be?

The one word I would use to describe the Watershed community would be Inspiring.

Describe your perfect day in Charlotte:

I like to go to the park with my wife and daughter. Sadie loves to play on the playground, and occasionally I'll get them to walk along while I play disc golf. The perfect end to a day would be a fire on our back patio with friends.

 

NEXT I'D LIKE WATERSHED TO FEATURE PAUL PEARL BECAUSE... WE WERE IN A BLOC TOGETHER, AND HE BEAT ME IN WEEK 1 OF OUR WATERSHED FANTASY FOOTBALL LEAGUE.

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Volunteer Friday #20

Volunteer Friday #20

Every other Friday we take a moment to introduce you to someone in our community who serves in one or more of Watershed's many volunteer areas: GreenHouse/Shed StudentsSunday TeamsCatapultBloc Leading, etc. The featured volunteer will then select someone he/she would like to see highlighted next.

This week, meet Thomas!

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THOMAS GARVIN

Volunteer Area(s): Band, Media

Why did you choose to volunteer in each of your areas?

Music is in my blood. My family has a long musical history that lives on in me. They helped instill an appreciation for its power from a young age. My mom was super supportive of whatever I wanted to do academically as a child because I didn't fancy sports. So we just kept picking up random instruments and learning. My aunts were choir directors at their churches, piano players, my cousin is a DJ (there's literally family choir at Thanksgiving). Volunteering with the band seemed like a no brainer for me. Everyone has their way in which God speaks and moves them in their life. For me, it is through music and nature. So I wanted to be a part of sharing what I felt in my heart through my violin, or cello, or timid voice at times. I wanted to share how my heart and soul light up inside when I'm able to be a part of an experience when a room full of people joins together as one to make this incredible sound... Music for me is Unity. It's something to get lost in, something that can take you over, and often times the experience is just bigger than words can do justice. 

What has been one of your favorite moments as a volunteer? 

No doubt, it's always helping set up in the mornings. You never know what technical difficulties are gong to arise and it's awesome to see everyone's talents be utilized to create an experience that is a refuge for the community on a Sunday morning.

If you could use only one word to describe our Watershed community, what would it be?

Woke.

Describe your perfect day in Charlotte:

Perfect day in Charlotte: Join Music, Friends, Outdoors (bonfire), and food and I'm literally in Heaven!

 

NEXT I'D LIKE WATERSHED TO FEATURE ALLEN WALLACE BECAUSE... he's a pretty awesome guy. Thoughtful and a huge heart to help people. I see you and you're awesome, brother!

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Volunteer Friday #19

Volunteer Friday #19

Every other Friday we take a moment to introduce you to someone in our community who serves in one or more of Watershed's many volunteer areas: GreenHouse/Shed StudentsSunday TeamsCatapultBloc Leading, etc. The featured volunteer will then select someone he/she would like to see highlighted next.

This week, meet Desmond!

DESMOND SMITH

Volunteer Area(s): Play bass in the Watershed Band, currently lead Preface 2.0 Bloc, member of the Lead team

Why did you choose to volunteer in each of your areas?

Not long after we started attending Watershed in 2007, I knew it was going to be important for me to get involved somehow. My wife suggested that I join the band, but, even though I had been a musician my whole life, I kept going back and forth on whether or not that was something I wanted to do. So she filled out a connection card for me and dropped it in that metal box. 

I am a member of the Lead Team (think a Watershed version of church elders) primarily because I care deeply about the direction of this community. I care about the staff and people who find themselves part of a Bloc or a gathering throughout the week. It is a privilege to come alongside the staff as they make decisions and dream about what's next for us.

Preface 2.0 is new for 2017 and has emerged as a Bloc for folks who want to go a little deeper than the Preface experience allows. Among the most important parts of the Watershed experience for me is the idea that people can come and feel affirmed about who they are. Preface 2.0 is an opportunity for me to participate in community with people who are new to the ideas that they are loved, that their questions about what it means to live a life of faith are normal and healthy, and that there is a place where they can simply be themselves.

What has been one of your favorite moments as a volunteer? 

Being on stage with the band is always fun. But there's something about Christmas at Watershed. There are candles. Lots of candles. I've only played a couple of times on Christmas Eve, but each time as the candles are being lit, I've appreciated how everyone in our community has an opportunity to be a light. It's a powerful reminder that we all carry a divine spark and that we can see that spark in everyone we meet. 

If you could use only one word to describe our Watershed community, what would it be?

Open  – to new ideas, to all people, to thinking about things in new ways.

Describe your perfect day in Charlotte:

My best days almost always start early with me writing in the sunroom. Sometime later, my wife joins me and that that means drinking coffee (or a pot of tea) and talking about anything without worrying about what time it is or what's up next on the to-do list. When it's not 400 degrees outside, maybe I'll take the bike out and trail ride for a couple of hours.  And if every day could end with a good meal around the table with good friends making good memories, that might just be perfect.

 

NEXT I'D LIKE WATERSHED TO FEATURE THOMAS GARVIN BECAUSE... THAT DUDE HAS GOT SOME ENERGY AND SOME GREAT IDEAS AND SOME MAD CELLO SKILLS AND WE ALL NEED PEOPLE LIKE THAT IN OUR LIVES.

Volunteer Friday #18

Volunteer Friday #18

Every other Friday we take a moment to introduce you to someone in our community who serves in one or more of Watershed's many volunteer areas: GreenHouse/Shed StudentsSunday TeamsCatapultBloc Leading, etc. The featured volunteer will then select someone he/she would like to see highlighted next.

This week, meet Shelley!

SHELLEY LEAZER

Volunteer Area(s): Café/Info Table Team

Why did you choose to volunteer in each of your areas?

It was a really good fit for an early bird like me! Plus I love getting to know the people I worship with on Sundays and making people feel welcome - just like I felt when I first started.

What has been one of your favorite moments as a volunteer? 

I love anytime I'm able to help someone new feel connected to Watershed. Visiting churches can be an experience filled with baggage and stress and I hope that in a small way I can make someone feel like their whole self will be accepted and loved.

If you could use only one word to describe our Watershed community, what would it be?

Thoughtful.

Describe your perfect day in Charlotte:

I'd start out with a yoga class at Yoga One, then brunch somewhere in South End. Explore the Mint Museum in the afternoon and close the day with a show at the Neighborhood Theater!

 

NEXT I'D LIKE WATERSHED TO FEATURE DESMOND SMITH BECAUSE... DES IS INVOLVED IN MANY VOLUNTEER AREAS AT WATERSHED, BUT I'M REALLY ENJOYING GETTING TO KNOW HIM AS THE LEADER OF PREFACE 2.0. HE IS SO FRIENDLY AND LEADS OUR GROUP WITH SUCH WISDOM AND KINDNESS! 

Volunteer Friday #17

Volunteer Friday #17

Every other Friday we take a moment to introduce you to someone in our community who serves in one or more of Watershed's many volunteer areas: GreenHouse/Shed StudentsSunday TeamsCatapultBloc Leading, etc. The featured volunteer will then select someone he/she would like to see highlighted next.

This week, meet Katie!

KATIE WILLIAMS

Volunteer Area(s): Cafe and Info Table Leader

Why did you choose to volunteer in each of your areas?

I started out on the team because my best friend, Elizabeth Benfield, was the leader. I love being a part of the team because it is an easy way for me to see all of my Watershed friends and to meet new people. It's easy to stand at the front, smile and be kind, but the role is important because all it takes is a welcoming smile to ease someone who may be new and joining us for the first time alone.

What has been one of your favorite moments as a volunteer? 

It's hard to place one specific moment. I enjoy how well the team works together and how willing they are to make sure everyone's Watershed experience is amazing and as stress-free as possible. 

If you could use only one word to describe our Watershed community, what would it be

Community.

Describe your perfect day in Charlotte:

My perfect day would be to lounge by the pool with some friends, enjoy a delicious dinner at one of the many new restaurants and hang out at one of the breweries around the city.

 

NEXT I'D LIKE WATERSHED TO FEATURE SHELLEY LEAZER BECAUSE... SHELLEY IS NEW TO WATERSHED AND THE CAFE TEAM AND IS ONLY TEMPORARILY WITH US UNTIL SHE GOES BACK TO SCHOOL, BUT SHE HAS JUMPED RIGHT IN ANYWAY WITH THE TEAM!  SHE IS ALWAYS WILLING TO TO STEP UP AND FILL IN WHEN WE ARE SHORT-STAFFED. SHE IS ALWAYS SMILING AND WILLING TO GO ABOVE AND BEYOND TO HELP THE NEW PEOPLE COMING THROUGH OUR DOORS. 

What is Justice? V | What to Do About Evil

What is Justice? V | What to Do About Evil

From inception Watershed has sought to put justice at the forefront of our mission. Whether embedded into the themes of pop culture artifacts or real life events in our city, nation, and world, justice has become a hot topic. Pastor of Justice Cedric Lundy has been conducting a blog series aimed at unpacking our understanding of justice and why it’s fundamental to our community. This post is part 5 of that series.


What distinguishes injustice from evil? As discussed in the previous blog post in this series at the root of injustice is the fundamental question of “what is enough?” When we either individually or corporately sense we are less it often results in us taking more, which often leaves others with less, and a crazy cycle ensues often resulting in entire systems and institutions of injustice. Evil then is when shame and or blame has led to a complete dehumanization of an individual or group of people. 

While injustice is often times the slow cooker of evil it doesn’t require institutions or systemic injustice to function. Evil is a direct and often overt action that can be perpetrated against someone whom the evildoer has so fully dehumanized that their actions (in their mind) are completely justified. There is no limit to the amount of shame and blame that can be leveled on their victim. 

I recognize this framing of evil may not line up with the accepted dictionary definition, but for our purposes I’m attempting to place evil within a theological framework that isn’t as simplistic as pointing to sin. I believe this is important because just calling it sin functionally excludes anyone who doesn’t align with a historically Christian or “biblical” worldview, and if we’re really to address the problem of evil in a way that includes everyone then we’ve got to work within a framework that is accessible to all.

The problem of evil has always plagued mankind. At times it seems as though it’s not going anywhere any time soon despite the fact that history would show the world as a whole is becoming less violent and more peaceful than at any time in recorded history. Which is especially hard to believe when the headlines recently have been filled with multiple terrorist attacks (several of them in London alone) in less than a month. Even with the gradual downward trend of violence (not that violence is the only measure of evil in the world), what are we to do about the problem of evil in the world? Many would refer to this gradual downward trend as progress, more specifically human progress. Which is why when something horrifically evil happens many living in first world comfort will declare that they have “lost faith in humanity”. The doctrine of progress has declared certain things unacceptable in modern times due solely to the fact that mankind has progressed past them.

New Testament scholar N.T. Wright in his book Evil and the Justice of God points out three characteristics or flaws in the Doctrine of Human Progress approach to dealing with evil. One, we ignore evil when it doesn’t hit us in the face (read: it doesn’t affect us or others like us). Second we are surprised when it does hit us in the face. Lastly we, in large part due to our shock, react in immature and dangerous ways.

We sit in the comfort of our first world privileges insulated from regular exposure to real evil able to not simply ignore it, but orchestrate life rhythms void of any dissonance. Thus not only are we surprised when it does hit us in the face, we are deeply offended. Is it possible that due to our shock and surprise when evil hits us in the face that we take it too personally? I’m not sure, but it would make sense of why our reaction to evil is often immature and dangerous.

Nowhere is that immaturity better seen than when our response to evil is to enact the very acts we condemn on those who wielded it to begin with. When our response to evil is to make evildoers suffer or destroy or eradicate them we’ve fallen into the same trap of dehumanizing them. An eye for eye makes the whole world blind. A bomb for a bomb leaves the whole world a heap of rubble.

Without getting into all the history of the drug war in America, much legislation was passed over a great many years that criminalized drug use and sought to perpetually penalize drug users as felons rather than rehabilitate them. The power of addiction shouldn’t be underestimated, however when one’s ability to re-enter society and become a contributing member of it are severely limited due to the penalties that curtail one’s chances of employment and higher education, the chances that an individual will go back to doing drugs or worse increases.

Perpetually penalizing as a solution to evil just doesn’t work. In fact many attempts to solve evil by punishment not only fails to provide a real solution but actually perpetuates evil. 

And therein lies the great mystery of Jesus dying on the cross.

Often times the question has been asked “why did Jesus have to die?”. However, that question reframes the narrative of Jesus’ death. It is blind to the fact that Jesus didn’t simply die one day, he was killed; Jesus didn’t have to die, he was killed. He was arrested on bogus charges supported by false testimony and then executed. Practically speaking there was no need for Jesus to die. On the other hand Jesus, who had openly criticized the sacrificial system as broken and too often a perpetrator of the cycle of evil it sought to appease, became its target. The sacrificial system was meant to provide a solution to the problem of evil, and it saw Jesus as a threat. 

It has been surmised that Jesus’ willingly allowing himself to be killed was in fact an act of submission to the powers of evil and letting them do their absolute worst. From this his proclaimed resurrection is seen as a victory over evil and the key to solving the problem of evil. It is the theological equivalent of Muhammad Ali’s infamous “rope a dope” tactic. For you non boxing historians, the “rope a dope” was Ali’s tactic of leaning up against the ropes of the ring in a defensive posture using his arms to protect his head and core, allowing his opponent to wail away on him. Ali famously employed this tactic on one of the most powerful hard hitting heavy weights who ever lived for seven rounds just waiting for Foreman to exhaust himself. As Foreman tells it he hit Ali as hard as he could only for Ali to peer out from behind his gloves and say, “Is that all you’ve got?”, to which Foreman said, “Yup that’s it.” He says that he knew at that moment he was going to lose. The difference being that Jesus doesn’t hit back to knock evil out, he rises, and at that sight evil knows it has nothing left. He shows that the way to defeat evil, to really solve the problem of evil is to allow for evil to literally wear itself out. 

It is that approach to solving the problem of evil that was employed by Ghandi and his followers to overcome British imperialism in India. That is the approach to solving the problem of evil that was employed by Martin Luther King Jr. and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference with their willingness to allow the angry mobs to do their worst. It is said that the tide was turned in the Civil Rights Movement the day a national audience saw negroes getting beaten to within an inch of their lives on the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma.

And therein lies the true problem of evil. Not that we don’t know how to overcome evil but that it comes at a tremendous cost most of us are not willing to take. Are we truly willing to let evil do its worst? Are willing to let evil take our lives in order to overcome it? Too often the answer is no. We’d rather fight fire with fire. We’d rather have vengeance than peace. We’d rather feel justified than be crucified.