October 2015

Pastor Mark
I have now been at DAC for four months! Time has flown by. So far it has been a smooth transition for my family and I. We love all of you and the community that God has placed us in. We are excited to see what God has for the future. Some of the areas that I am currently working on are leadership development, a preaching schedule for the next year, a membership course, revisiting lots of documents, developing unity in the board, elders and staff, and the beginnings of God's direction for the church for this time. Please pray along with me for God to do his work in his ways at DAC! I am encouraged and excited for the future!
 
The Staff
As a staff we are meeting weekly to pray, plan, and prepare for what God is currently doing and looking towards the future. We are coming together as a team and excited for the unity and new life that is springing up in many places. Some of the things being discussed and implemented are setting short term goals, development of different ministries, and updating areas of the building.
 
Board of Governance
The Board of Governance sets boundaries for the for Pastor. We met in September and will meet again in December. Some of the topics of discussion were monitoring performance of the pastor, job descriptions, revisiting guiding principles, and budgeting.
 
Elders
The Elders are responsible for giving spiritual oversight in DAC and meet monthly for a strategic time of prayer and to talk through caring for people. On the 2nd Sunday of the month, after the service, the Elders lead a time of prayer. At the last one, there were over 30 people in attendance. Praise God!
 
Leadership Development
The Staff, Board of Governance and Elders are meeting once a month on Monday evenings for leadership development. We have met twice so far and are discussing unity, spiritual leadership, multiplication moments, and the book Sticky Teams by Larry Osborne. Our next meeting is November 9th.
 
Explores Children’s Ministry
At DAC we believe that children are both the present and future of the church. We have 42 people serving regularly in Explorers Children's Ministry.  It's especially good that we have such a solid and dedicated volunteer team because our children's attendance numbers are growing! We may be approaching a tipping point when we will need to break out into four age groups, rather than three.  Join us in praying for God's leading in all of that! Praise God! This is what Kari is saying about the nursery.
 
"Nursery is a fun place to be these days because we have a great group of Tiny Explorers!  It's been a special treat getting to know some of the newer attenders through the privilege of caring for their little treasures!" - Kari Wong, Nursery Coordinator
 
Vision Youth Ministry
We believe that God is training up the next generation of disciples and leaders, and vision is a vital part of the process. We have recently finished up the series, The Circle Maker, where we took a deeper look into the importance of prayer.  The high school students are now gearing up for the LIFE conference that will be held in Kansas City this summer.  Fundraising for this trip will begin this month!
 
Small Groups
We believe that small groups are an optimal environment for life change. This fall, we have four fall small groups up and running, all using the material, "Ephesians:  Studying with the Global Church," from the Third Lausanne Congress on World Evangelization.  Our groups include unchurched people, DAC attenders who are participating in a DAC small group for the first time, and people from a wide variety of backgrounds.  Some of the participants are doing this kind of (inductive) Bible study for the first time, and it's exciting to see people show up to a small group gathering excited about the time that they spent in the Scriptures through the week.
 
Lifetree Café
Lifetree Cafe continues to be a valuable connecting point for those who have not yet placed their faith in Christ, but are interested in forming relationships, and in some cases, exploring faith.  At our October 7 episode, "What Do You Want to Talk About?" participants had the opportunity to write down a question on an index card, and literally put it on the table to discuss with their tablemates.  One woman, a non-Christian who regularly attends Lifetree, wrote down, "Who is Jesus?" and the conversation was off and running!
 
Montgomery County Coalition for the Homeless
We believe that the church has a mandate to care for the poor; at DAC we take this seriously! This past month, through Operation Homecoming, DAC has provided the necessary items to begin a home for James, a once homeless veteran, and his fiancé, Megan.  We have also collected household items for a veteran and his family of four that are awaiting the finalization of their home! It has been amazing to see how God has provided for these individuals and the generosity of DAC attendees! We also continue to make lunches once a month for the Gude Men’s shelter.
 
Upcoming
Prayer Gathering
Advent Daily Reflections
Men’s Event

November 2015

Pastor Mark
Can you believe that Thanksgiving has passed, and we are into the season celebrating the birth of our Savior Jesus Christ? His coming has changed everything for those who give their lives to Him, and my hope and prayer is that this season will be a time to reflect on the greatest gift of all, Jesus!

Staff
The staff continue to meet weekly for prayer, planning, and preparing for what God has next. In addition to organizing each Sunday Gathering, the staff planned the Prayer Gathering, 50th Anniversary, and are now working on Advent and laying out the next calendar year.
 
Board of Governance (BOG)
The Board of Governance sets boundaries for the Pastor and meets quarterly. We will meet in December 14th to approve the budget, update the principles, recommend any by-law changes, training, accountability and support. We will also have a status check on monitoring performance, connecting with Christ, and connecting with people.
 
Elders
The Elders are responsible for giving spiritual oversight in DAC. This past month, the Elder-led Time of Prayer was incorporated into DAC’s 50th Anniversary celebration service. Instead of an Elders meeting in November, most of the Elders attended a Men’s Conference at McLean Bible Church where Tony Evans, Tony Perkins, and many other speakers challenged men to live for Jesus. This month the Elders will meet to pray, and review our membership and care lists.
 
Leadership Development
As staff, BOG, and Elders, we continue to meet monthly to pray, discuss the book Sticky Teams, seek God and how He desires to multiply this ministry. It is great to have conversations as we discern what God has for DAC now and for the future.
 
DAC Celebrates 50 Years!
On November 8th, DAC celebrated its 50th anniversary! We saw a video recap of the church’s history along with updates from our mother church (First Alliance Church of Silver Spring) and other churches that we have helped plant. On top of this, we also received letters of encouragement and congratulations from the national office of the C&MA, took a fun group picture, and had delicious cake and punch.  Praise God for his faithfulness for 50 years!
 
Explorers Children’s Ministry
At DAC we believe that Children are both the present and future of the church. The new tradition of Together Sunday started this past month.  With the desire to be more of an intergenerational church, the Explorer students from first to fifth grade joined the teens and adults upstairs for the full worship service.  Together Sunday will continue to take place every fifth Sunday of a given month.  It is a great for all generations to come together for growing, learning, and worshipping on a regular basis.
 
Vision Youth Ministry
We believe that God is training up the next generation of disciples and leaders, and Vision is a vital part of the process. Each Wednesday night, Vision meets to help students wrestle with their faith.  For seven students, the LIFE conference fundraising has begun!  To help raise funds, these students participated in a community leaf rake.  This month they are providing child care to give parents a break. We are excited to see how God will continue to provide for this trip and also how he is working in Vision.
 
Small Groups
We believe that small groups are an optimal environment for life change. Our fall semester of small groups has wrapped up. There are many stories of how God used this study of Paul’s letter to the church in Ephesus to speak into individual lives.  During the holidays, we will take a break from small groups, but keep your eye out for the winter semester small group listing in the beginning of the new year!

Audio/Visual Ministry Team
A new computer and updated version of ProPresenter had been purchased for the A/V team, and they are meeting to become familiar with these updates. This will help to enhance our Sunday morning worship experience.  
 
Lifetree Café
Lifetree Cafe continues to be a valuable connecting point for those who have not yet placed their faith in Christ, but are interested in forming relationships, and in some cases, exploring faith.
 
Montgomery County Coalition for the Homeless
We believe that the church has a mandate to care for the materially poor. At DAC, we take this seriously and are continuing to provide meals for the Men’s shelter along with waiting to provide all the donated items to the next family we are coming alongside. Continue to pray for God to use us as his hands and feet.
 
Upcoming Events
Child Dedication - December 13th, during the Sunday Gathering
Christmas Eve Service - December 24th, 7:00pm
Prayer Gathering - January 13th, 7:00pm

December 2015

Pastor Mark
I am excited and encouraged how DAC finished the year. Our attendance and giving has been increasing and we have seen the faithfulness of God in so many areas. This is not to pat ourselves on the back but to praise God for all he has done! I believe that this is just the beginning of what God has planned as we pursue him and his purposes. We have been placed in a strategic location to share the gospel of Jesus Christ and see lives transformed. May all of us embrace God’s call to be witnesses and make disciples. (Acts 1:8)

Staff
The staff continues to meet weekly for prayer, planning, and discerning what God has next.  As we enter 2016, Katie Boss, our part time worship director, is taking on a larger role. We are excited to have her on board and to see where God takes us with worship. Also, Tim Allen, our Youth Director, is doing a great job, and we are excited to have him on our staff part time.
 
Board of Governance (BOG)
The Board of Governance sets boundaries for the Pastor and meets quarterly. On December 14th, the budget, our guiding principles, and by-laws were reviewed.  A status check on monitoring performance, connecting with Christ, and connecting with people was also conducted. The Board has expressed much confidence in the staff and believes that God has great things planned for DAC!
 
Elders
The Elders are responsible for shepherding and giving spiritual oversight in DAC. This past month, the Elders met on the 5th to pray, and review our membership and care lists.  The congregation participated in another unifying elder-led time of prayer on the 13th. Please join them in praying for God to do a great work in our lives, at DAC, in our communities, and to the ends of the earth!
 
Leadership Development
For this past month, the church leadership and spouses enjoyed a Christmas party in lieu of the monthly leadership development gathering.  Delicious food, great conversations, and funny white elephant gifts were enjoyed by everyone! There is a great sense of unity. Praise God! We will continue studying the book “Sticky Teams” and then will begin the book our church structure is based off of, “Winning on Purpose.”  
 
Explorers Children’s Ministry
At DAC we believe that Children are both the present and future of the church.  Over the Christmas season, the Explorers sang a song during the worship service on the 20th. Explorers is currently evaluating class sizes and space as we see more children connecting here.

Vision Youth Ministry
We believe that God is training up the next generation of disciples and leaders, and Vision is a vital part of this process.  The group has kicked started a new lesson series that takes a deeper look at the life cycle of a Christ follower.  In addition to Wednesday’s gatherings, the Vision students continue to fundraise for LIFE Conference.  On December 11th, students provided childcare for parents looking for a night off.  It was fun, exhausting, and helped support LIFE. More fundraising will be happening over the next few months.
 
Small Groups
We believe that small groups are an optimal environment for life change, and our winter/spring semester registration opened at the end of December.  We’re excited to see how God will use these groups to shape our lives and live on mission!
 
Christmas Eve Service
With the worship team on ground level, and a fireplace displayed on the projection screen, we enjoyed a “family room” style Christmas Eve service. We had a surprise guest visit us, as a bat flew over head (don’t worry we caught and released him). We looked at Isaiah 9:6 which states, “For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”

Montgomery County Coalition for the Homeless
We believe that the church has a mandate to care for the materially poor. As of the 29th, all of the furniture and household items that we have collected are being stored nearby in a space provided by Montgomery County Coalition for the Homeless.  Please continue to pray for a mom and four daughters who are experiencing homelessness.  We are poised to move them into permanent housing as soon as their paperwork clears. 

Volunteers
Thank you to all the volunteers that faithfully serve in many different capacities! Thank you to those who have just begun to volunteer and those who are considering it. Without you we could not accomplish what God is asking us to do!
 
Upcoming Events
Prayer Gathering - January 13th, 7:00pm
Lifetree Café – January 20th, 7:30pm
Dinner & Movie LIFE Fundraiser – January 23rd, 6:00pm