OUR MINISTRIES

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MINISTRY OVERVIEW

Sardis Baptist offers many opportunities for members, friends and guests to deepen their faith, develop lasting friendships and find a place to help others. We continually adapt our ministries to fit the gifts and needs of our members, rather than ask persons to fit into a set schedule of programming. Sardis is a fellowship “where church means people.”

There are Sunday School classes for all ages and periodic weekday Bible study classes. Five months of the year (usually twice in the fall and three times in the spring) we gather on Wednesday evenings for dinner, adult “Sardis Academy” sessions (where the topics can range from Global Warming & Christianity to Faith & Politics), and children’s programming.

You may be interested in our children’s “Tween Time,” or Senior Adult outings, preschool handbells or the adult choir. You could sign up for a yoga class, or take lessons at the Sardis Piano Academy. To learn more about our ministries explore the sidebars.


Five months of the year (two in the fall and three in the spring), the congregation gathers on Wednesday nights for a fellowship meal and a time of biblical, theological and missional education.

The adults spend time exploring topical studies of a various nature. These series are led by either the ministerial staff or by other community leaders or subject matter experts. Examples of topics for Sardis Academy series include: An Interfaith Dialogue, covering Judaism, Islam, Buddhism and Hinduism; Making a Difference in Charlotte, with speakers from Habitat, Urban Ministry Center, Crisis Assistance and Loaves & Fishes; A Faith & Science series, and a series on how race and gender affects theology.

Our children engage in Missions and Music Education. Each series, the children spend time both encountering God through music and encountering God through stories of how people throughout the world are making a difference by being the presence of God to others. Each series focuses on field personnel working with a specific people group. The children encounter the culture of the people group through games, art, music, cooking, among other exciting methods of learning.

Older children rehearse music from all cultures and prepare to sing in worship services several times a year, sometimes with the Chancel Choir. Younger children are introduced to a love of music by dancing, singing, and playing percussion instruments as well as learning children’s handbells.

Bible Study classes for children, youth and adults meet each Sunday morning at 9:45. Sardis offers six classes:

  • Adult – post high school
  • Youth – middle and high school
  • Older Elementary – 3rd through 6th grades
  • Younger Elementary – Kindergarden through 2nd grade
  • Preschool – children ages 3-5 spend time learning about God through play, through nature, through the love of caring adults, and through encountering Biblical stories and principles
  • Infant/Toddler – Our youngest children encounter God through play, through a safe and secure environment to explore, through engaging nature, through the love of caring adults, and through encountering Biblical stories and principles

Children are a vital part of the life of Sardis.

In addition to weekly Sunday School Classes and children’s Sardis Academy programming on periodic Wednesday nights, we offer the following annual events include:

  • “Going to Worship” Class – Typically, our rising kindergartners begin joining us for worship. They and their families are invited to a special gathering to begin this transition. They spend time exploring the worship space, spending time with the pastors, and learning about worship and celebrating this milestone in their lives.
  • Acolyte Training – Children lead worship at Sardis by serving as acolytes. Each week we have three acolytes; a crucifer (one who carries the cross), a light bearer (carrying in the light and lighting the candles), and a book bearer (carrying in the pulpit Bible). The children participate in annual educational and instructional time about this important worship leadership role.
  • Vacation Bible School – A week long morning event in the summer for children from ages 4 through 6th grade. Activities include crafts, music, bible study and recreation. In 2013, we had 44 children participate in VBS.
  • PassportKids! – A mission focused children’s summer camp run by Passport Inc. for 3rd-6th graders. We attend the session offered at Eagle Eyrie in Lynchburg, VA. The camp runs for four days & three nights.
  • Messy Day – A fun filled day of the messiest games involving foods, water, and goo! Usually topped off with a lunch of Sloppy Joes!
  • Family Events – Periodic family events such an afternoon hayride and corn maze in the fall and a cook-out and egg hunt in the spring.
  • Music Camp – A spring music retreat for older children (grades 3-5) in partnership with several other Charlotte churches, such as Myers Park Baptist Church.
  • Service Projects – Children at Sardis participate in mission projects, such as making lunches for Room in the Inn and visiting local nursing home facilities.
  • Tween Time – A monthly gathering time on Sunday evenings for our “tweens,” our 4th-6th graders, where we focus on community building and discipleship.

Our preschool children participate in age-appropriate play and loving care during Sunday School and at Worship Care. Worship Care is a ministry to preschoolers, while the rest of the congregation is worshiping God in the sanctuary. Worship Care providers are prepared to guide the children in “Godly play,” where they are nurtured into an awareness of God’s love as they play, draw, take a nature walk and other age-appropriate activities.

On Sardis Academy Wednesday evenings, preschool children also receive beginning music classes, including an introduction to handbells and other assorted percussion instruments.

The ministry with the youth of Sardis is highly relationally based. In the past year we have held gatherings in youth homes, completed mission projects in Charlotte, gone white water rafting and skiing.

The youth group meets on Sunday evenings once a month.  There are youth sessions at Wednesday night Sardis Academy events, following a congregation dinner.  Each year the youth take a fall rafting retreat in the mountains, a ski retreat to West Virginia, a spring sleepover at Lake Wylie and go to a summer youth camp together.

The youth have taken mission trips to the North Carolina mountains, Washington D.C., West Virginia, New Orleans, and rural Arkansas.

Sardis Senior Adults meet monthly for lunch, conversation, and for day trips. Some meetings may take them down memory lane; others point to the future. But all of them are a present of fun, laughter and sharing of friendship. Scheduled days and times of meetings vary so that participation can be convenient everyone’s personal timetables.

This small group experience is offered occasionally during the year for those wishing to deepen their practice in the spiritual disciplines. Each series of studies vary depending on the course. Participants find themselves supporting and being supported by their colleagues on the Christian journey. Reading and exercises are chosen to stimulate personal spiritual growth and contribute to congregational spiritual development.

The Chancel Choir at Sardis Baptist consists of a group of very talented and dedicated adults. This choir sings for Sunday morning and special worship services. We sing music from various areas of Christian music including classical, spirituals and music from contemporary composers. This choir also has talented and willing soloists and instrumentalists. Choir practice is on Wednesday evenings at 7:30. Practice is a joy, where fellow singers laugh and enjoy each others company while doing something that each loves. Typically the choir takes the months of July and August off and we enjoy guest musicians during those Sundays.

We are fortunate to have an experienced minister of music, Rev. Joanie Williams, who has served in Baptist and Methodist congregations. We are doubly blessed to have a wonderful accompanist and accomplished pianist in Irena Hramenkova. Trained at a famed Moscow music school, Irena is a master at the piano.

“Yoga for Every Body” is led by Judy Murphy in the Education Building at Sardis Baptist.  Classes are offered on Mondays at 3:30 and 5:00, and Tuesdays at 4:30 and 6:00.  Each class lasts approximately 80 minutes.  She typically offers them in 8-week sessions (one per week). Cost is $80.

Judy Murphy is a Hatha Yoga Instructor. Beginners are welcome at “Yoga for Every Body.” The classes are taught to welcome the novice and the experienced.

To request more information or to find out how you can join a class, email Judy at judy.u.murphy@gmail.com or you may call her at 704-535-2831.

Sardis Piano Academy offers piano lessons to students young and “young-at-heart.” Irena Hramenkova, pianist at Sardis Baptist, is an acclaimed piano teacher, having been educated in piano at the Moscow Conservatory of Music. She was the official accompanist of the National Soviet Gymnastic Team and her compositions were used for the Olympics and for all international gymnastic teams in 1984 and 1988.

Ms. Hramenkova has been a piano teacher in Charlotte for over 13 years. Many of her students have won local and state competitions. She has had students play for the Charlotte Youth Symphony and with the Charlotte Symphony at Belk Theatre.

Lessons are taught in the Sardis Baptist Meetinghouse on Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays beginning mid-afternoon. Costs for lessons are: $52 for hour sessions, $39 for 45 minute sessions, and $26 for half-hour sessions. Students are expected to regularly perform at recitals, competitions and festivals.

To request more information, lesson availability or a registration form, please email Irena atIrena@sardisbaptistcharlotte.org or you may call the church office at 704-362-0811 to speak with our secretary or leave a message on the answering machine.

MINISTRY STAFF

Rev Bob Stillerman

Pastor

Rev Tillie Duncan

Pastor

Rev Jonathan Eidson

Pastor

EVENTS