COVID-19 UPDATE: We have resumed in-person worship.
Streaming has been discontinued.
At Oak Lawn Community Baptist Church, we support people as they seek to grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.
We are an American Baptist Church in partnerships with American Baptist Churches of Rhode Island and American Baptist Churches, USA. We are ecumenically minded and seek opportunities for worship and service with other community churches.
Our church welcomes diverse families. We provide for Christian Education (Sunday School) for school aged children, as well as a nursery for pre-school children during worship services.
A very important part of our worship at Oak Lawn Community Baptist Church is our music program. We have been blessed with a strong music ministry consisting of a Sanctuary Choir, Hand bell Choir, two organists, and many musically talented members who readily share their gifts during the worship services throughout the year.
At the conclusion of worship every Sunday all are invited to the fellowship hall to join in conversation and refreshments.
Oak Lawn Community Baptist Church is located at 229 Wilbur Avenue in Cranston. We warmly invite you to worship with us on a Sunday morning at 9:30 am. Until then, may our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ richly bless you!
Pastor Barbara's Facebook Page:
Well, as you know from previous years, once we’ve lit the Christ Candle, we burn the Advent Candles until Epiphany. Epiphany is January 6th this year and it celebrates the revelation of Jesus Christ as The Light of the World.
Thank God for that because we live in a world filled with darkness, consider: the omicron variant, inflation and high gas prices, empty shelves and supply chain issues, political divisions and even hatred, racial and global tensions, mass lootings and unchecked violence.
Plus, a prevailing sense of fear abounds. Perhaps the poet Robert Frost worded it best when he wrote: "I have been acquainted with the night. I have walked in the rain and out of the rain. I have been acquainted with the night."
I don't have to tell any of you about the darkness, because in one form or another, it touches the life of every person. It is just a matter of when.
We have all been acquainted with the night.
Nowhere in Scripture does it suggest that things aren't really as bad as they seem. Rather, it affirms that the darkness is real and it is present. But, it also affirms that there is a light at the end of the tunnel. As the prophet Isaiah wrote, "The people who walk in darkness have seen a great light." John's gospel records: “The light shines in the darkness and the darkness has not overcome it.”
The ancient Hebrew was afraid of the darkness. They were particularly afraid of a place they called the outer darkness. To them creation began when God said: Let there be light. To them, where there was only darkness there was only void and emptiness. What great hope it must have brought them when they heard Jesus refer to Himself as the Light of the World.
We need to hear those words as we enter into a New Year when people all over the world have suffered almost 2 years under the siege of an unwanted virus of unknown origins. We need to hear those words in the aftermath of recent tornadoes that left a trail of devastation across six states and destroyed many lives.
The darkness is real.
But because Christ is the Light of the World, it will never get so dark that you can't see the light. Into the darkness God sent an eternal light and that Light is the Hope of the world.
Step outside some January evening and notice that the darkness does not intrude upon the light. It is the light that intrudes upon the darkness. Light is always stronger than darkness.
Perhaps, that’s why God chose to use a star to guide the wise men to Bethlehem. It was to be an eternal reminder to them and us that in a sea of darkness, there is a light to help us move forward. It is the light of hope and the light of Christ promised to the people of God.
It is my prayer that the light of Christ will make your way just a little lighter and brighter in the New Year.
Blessings upon you in 2022!
There is a legend, that at the time of the Crucifixion, the dogwood had been the size of the oak and other forest trees. So firm and strong was the tree that it was chosen as the timber of the cross.
That it was used for such a cruel purpose greatly distressed the tree. Jesus, nailed upon it, sensed this, and in His gentle pity for all sorrow and suffering said to it "Because of your regret and pity for My suffering, never again shall the dogwood tree grow large enough to be used as a cross. Henceforth it shall be slender and bent and twisted, and its blossoms shall be in the form of a cross... two long and two short petals. And in the center of the outer edge of each petal there will be nail prints, brown with rust and stained with red, and in the center of the flower will be a crown of thorns,
and all who see it will remember."
Submitted by: Robin Butzier
My Pandemic Discoveries
God is still ever-present! He has been my Fortress, my City Wall and Shield and has comforted me when worried. He has opened my eyes, in a special way, to His beauty and love! While my rhythms and routines have quieted, and each day (quickly) rolls into the next, His rhythms have remained constant and reassuring. Each spectacular sunrise and sunset (and there have been many) has reminded me that He is with me- right where I need Him to be! What I have surprisingly discovered about myself is how content I am with this quiet lifestyle!! I almost feel like this past year has been my Sabbatical. My home has been my sanctuary, and has provided me with comfort and safety (as well as a lot of cleaning!). I have welcomed the slower pace within its walls and have found that going to work one day a week was (and is) often too much. Too much worry, too much purell and too many sanitizing wipes!
What I Have Discovered During The Pandemic
The amazing strength and perseverance of our church community which has been tested
beyond measure. Kindness and caring are unmeasurable...there is no such thing as “small acts of kindness”.
When I take the time to just be, I can make the time to do.
Time is never wasted.
Hallmark movies---going back to our
roots (“in the beginning”) to get to our happily ever after (“...have eternal life”).
Disagreements do not have to lead to arguments. They can lead us to solutions when we truly listen. What a blessing technology is. It allowed us to worship together virtually---to keep in contact with each other---to conduct church business.
How irritating, aggravating, and frustrating technology can be when it decides to
take on a life/mind of its own. Especially when you are trying to make an appointment to get the vaccine.
Unsung heroes are everywhere.
Quiet moments with God renew my spirit and calms my fears.
Fully Relying On God is more than just a saying. God’s grace and mercy are
A LITTLE POEM ON PANDEMIC DISCOVERY
Well here it is, over one year gone
But has anything changed as we sing the same old song?
The search should be easy to find what is new
Of course streaming technology is replacing the pew
And meeting on screens of 10 inches or smaller
Learning when on “mute” it does no good to talk louder.
Through the fog of Lysol and spray disinfectant
We searched for answers, quite expectant. Oh, there were some but not what we longed to hear
Just mask and virus and not being near. We’ve gone from one step forward, two steps back
To shots in the arm and getting back on track.
So what have I discovered during this time of isolation
This time of lost patience, stress and frustration?
Well, it’s nothing new, it’s always been there
It’s in our name, it’s why we care.
It’s the Community we are that has helped us through
And the fellowship soon to be shared with each of you!
Seeing my Oak Lawn Church Family on Sunday morning can very easily be taken for granted; after all it is my choice to be there on a Sunday morning. Going away for a few months during the summer and not being there to see them is ok ; after all it is my choice.
With the pandemic, it is a different story the entire process is no longer my choice. A few weeks/ months of that was ok but as it has lasted many months, the realization has sunk in how much one receives socially/ emotionally from these encounters , even just a wave to some.
Making phone calls, texting, video chatting and even Zoom meetings helps to supply some of this. Being part of the online streaming service helps to let you worship with others- saying Good Morning briefly on chat. The Zoom bible study gives you the opportunity to see that others are ok and a chance to verbally share ideas.
There is nothing however that will compare with the physical contact that we will have when we are able to gather to share handshakes and hugs with one another.
Stay safe until then and continue to do what you are doing.
Having no place I can go has given me lots of time for sewing, knitting, reading, walking and puzzles. Also, lots of time to do the chores "later" so I have become very good at postponing the housework. However, I miss having places to go and visits with my family and friends especially "game time".