As we move into the summer months it is time to begin our summer sermon series “Deeper Into Discipleship.” Over the next 8 weeks we will be looking at different aspects of discipleship and how each one of them helps us to grow deeper as followers of Christ. I hope you will join me this week as we begin this series together.
I haven’t spoken very much about the tragic events that took place last week in Charleston, SC. This is not because I haven’t been paying attention, nor is it because I don’t want to speak about it. The reason I haven’t said much is because I don’t know what to say.
It has been awfully hard this past week to try and put into words the pain that this event has caused for me. I’m sure for many of you the same can be said. The words that you wish to form are simply too hard to come by. And yet as Christians we must try. We must try to put into words our thoughts and our feelings and our prayers. We must try to look ahead and to voice not only our sadness but our plans of action as well.
This Sunday at Park Street we will be having two very different and very distinct worship experiences. I’d like to invite you to them both.
First, New Light worship at 9am, I will be speaking about the events of last week. I will talk a little bit about my own personal feelings and understandings, but I will also be sharing a Biblical story that I think speaks to this. And while it will never give us the answers that we are looking for, I think that it ultimately will lead us to a better understanding of the role that we as God’s people play in combating hate and violence in our society.
Second, during 11am worship, we will be having the closing wrap up for our VBS that will be taking place this weekend. For those of you that attended last year’s VBS service you know how much fun we had together, and this year’s service I feel sure will prove to be even better.
So instead of picking one or the other this week, I encourage you all to come and join us for these two very different very distinct worship opportunities. It will give us the chance as the Body of Christ to share and experience the full breadth of what it means to be in relationship with one another.
This Sunday at Park Street will be honoring our 2015 graduates during the 11am worship service. I hope everyone will be able to come and share in the joy of this special day as we worship together.
Park Street UMC is excited to welcome Ms. Emily Robbian who will be joining us this summer as a part of the Explore Summer Ministry Internship Program.
Emily is from High Point, NC where she is a member and attends Wesley Memorial UMC. She currently attends Pfeiffer University where she is a Religion and Practical Theology major with a concentration in Christian Education. Her ongoing plans include a possible look at youth and children’s ministry. As part of her endeavors at Pfeiffer, she is a part of a group called CEF (Christians Engaged in Faith Formation) where her and other members travel to other churches to perform worship services that they themselves plan and lead. Emily is also a Resident Assistant and volunteers her time as the At Risk Youth Coordinator for the Francis Center for Servant Leadership. In this role she has lead the center’s Angel Tree program, as well as helped with after school and tutoring programs. Emily hopes to use this summer to help discern God’s call upon her life.
Please join me in welcoming Emily this summer.
Between the tragedy of Friday and the triumph of Sunday comes the silence of Saturday. For centuries different traditions have treated this day differently. Yet there is one thing that they all agree on and that is the silence of this day, the silence of death.
Just because Friday is over doesn’t mean that we can move on to Sunday just yet. No, we have one more day to wait. Let us wait, in silence, in anticipation.
Trust me, it will be worth it.
In the last weeks of his life Jesus takes a turn in his ministry, a turn towards Jerusalem. As those who live on this side of history we understand what this turn will ultimately mean. In just a few short days we will celebrate the last leg of this journey with Palm Sunday, as we are reminded of his triumphant entry into Jerusalem.
It can be very tempting for us as Christians tojump from this triumph on Palm Sunday to the triumph on Easter Morning, to skip the hard stuff in between, but I caution against that. You see there can be no resurrection without first death.
So as we prepare ourselves for the coming week let us not be tempted to skip from one triumph to another. Instead let our hearts experience all the emotions that this season brings along with it. For it is only then that we can see the full depth and breadth of God’s love for us.