October Offerings at Whitfield UMC
First of all, please welcome Rev. Jenni Hendrix to the pulpit on Oct. 3rd as she fills in for me while Jim and I participate in an Upper Room 5 Day Academy for Spiritual Formation at The Trinity Center in Pine Knoll Shores, North Carolina, from Oct. 3-8. I will have my cell phone with me but am unsure of the reception. Marty will have the phone number of the facility to contact me should an emergency arise. I will be back in the pulpit on Oct. 10th. I am also scheduled to have a knee replacement on Oct. 21st, but right now I don’t know if it will actually happen since the hospital is not doing elective surgery as of this writing, but we are still a month away.
October 3rd is also World Communion Sunday, one of the Special Sundays observed by United Methodist Churches. The observance focuses our attention on the universal and inclusive nature of the church. We use our Communion offering for this, which funds scholarships for young scholars and seminarians. These donations also equip racial and ethnic-minority students in the U.S. and international students to transform their church and communities. Please use the envelopes included in your bulletin that Sunday for your Communion Offering and give generously for the education for church leadership in the UMC.
Nancy Pugh is going to be offering a wonderful new Bible Study on Thursday mornings starting Oct. 21st at 10:00 am so look for more details to come!
I love that the air is getting a little cooler now as we move into the fall season. Autumn always reminds me that this is a wonderful, holy time of coming together to heed and hear the call of our Lord Jesus to join him in fields ripe for harvest. As we gather for the glory of God, and seek the expansion of God’s reign, we recognize the need to not only announce the truth of God’s reign but to demonstrate it by embodying the values of God’s kingdom through peace, love, social justice and so much more! Let us listen to the cries of our city and recognize the needs here, and see where God is at work so that we can come alongside and serve with joy and loyalty, sticking around for the long haul! Any gift we can offer others in the name of Jesus Christ is an offering of grace.
One of the opportunities we have to reach out to our community and welcome them with love is in the form of a Fall Festival Trunk or Treat. Mark your calendars for Saturday, Oct. 30th, when we will gather in our front parking lot with our cars decorated and hand out candy to those who come by from 4:00-5:00 pm. Feel free to dress up yourselves (maybe as your favorite Bible character) and enjoy the time sharing with our community. It will still be light at that time of day so I hope we have a lot of participation from our congregation! Please plan on having enough candy per car for approximately 200 children. As we seek to share God’s world of abundance and give freely to others, recognizing God’s Divine economy of abundance, we must always ask the question – does it help others to touch God’s grace? As we step out of our comfort zones and see the sacredness of all who stand before us, let us help them to also see the image of God in themselves so that we may all draw closer to our Lord.
Grace and Love,