Summer is gone, the days are flying by and now we are already in the fall season. The leaves will soon be changing colors to beautiful orange, brown and gold. And then they will fall and the time will change – “fall back and spring ahead!” It will become darker outside earlier. The children are getting acclimated to school and making new friendships as well as keeping up with existing ones. It is so nice to hear the laughter and yes, sometimes the cries, from the children whose parents are in the ESL or GED classrooms. <!–split–>
As I sit here at my desk and try to decide what I am going to write about for this month’s newsletter I find my mind meditating on “Followers of Jesus Christ.” Followers of Jesus today want their faith in Jesus Christ to make a difference… within themselves and within their community. There is an inward mission and an outward mission. The inward must precede the outward mission or the outward mission will have no spiritual power to make a difference. The outward mission must follow the inward mission or the inward mission is suspect.
We first must know Christ and then make Christ known. Each of us is called to be on mission daily, inward and outwardly. I leave you with this, “Are we doing what we have been called to do…”
Matthew 4:19 And he saideth unto them “follow me and I will make you fishers of people.”
It is September, school is in and parents are filled with joy! As I sit and meditate what to write to you, God says tell them: The Bethel Wesley United Methodist Church is a very special church to me. But we are not like an island in the sea. We are connected to ALL in God’s great kingdom. God is aware of our need more surely than we are. God is faithful and will supply our need. There is no lack in God’s willingness or ability to bless Bethel Wesley United Methodist Church.<!–split–>
We are called to a season of reflection and prayer. The mission of “Inviting and Welcoming so everyone experiences and shares the amazing love of God though Jesus Christ” remains in full focus. Our desire to make an impact on Bethel Wesley United Methodist Church and surrounding communities continues on.
Pray for your church. Serve your church. Read your Bible. Be in unity and be a part of what God is doing! For God says, “I am about to do a brand new thing…” (Isaiah 43:19) NLT!
I was reading a Christian magazine the other day and would like to share the following portion:
“In every step, in every stride, I will let the Savior be my guide! His word, His love, I will embrace and let His wisdom set the pace. We must feed on the bread of life ourselves before we can serve it to others. When the Bible speaks, discussion is useless; when the Bible is silent, discussion ends.<!–split–>
Therefore, study the Bible to be wise, believe it to be safe, practice it to be holy. Life is full of misleading, wrong voices, wrong directions and human wills. If that is the case, then we need to be extremely careful to what kind of voice we hear. We must also make sure that we follow correctly and strictly God’s command to our lives.”
Friends, as you all know the last half of June and so far, the month of July has been full of uncertainties for me, but by holding to God’s unchanging Hand it is all working out. Life and future are precious therefore handle them with prayers. Thank you all for your concern and most of all your prayers!
Remain blessed of the Lord.
Just a note, please mark your calendar:
The Charge Conference will be held November 30, 2014 at 3:00 pm at the East Moline Christ Church. More details to follow later. Thanks.
2014 Illinois Great Rivers Annual Conference
The Illinois Great Rivers 2014 Conference met June 4-7, 2014 at the Peoria Civic Center. The Rev. John Wesley, founder of Methodism instituted the means of grace and Holy or Christian conferencing was one of the means of grace set forth. <!–split–>
The purpose of the annual conference is to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world by equipping its local churches for ministry and by providing a connection for ministry beyond the local church. The annual conference consists of clergy and lay members. Clergy membership consists of deacons and elders in full connection, provisional members, associates members, affiliate members and local pastors under full-time and part-time appointment to a pastoral charge.
According to the UM Book of Discipline, the lay membership of the annual conference consists of professing members elected by the charge, diaconal ministers, deaconesses, home missioners, the conference president of United Methodist Women, the conference president of United Methodist Men, the conference lay leader, district lay leaders, the conference scouting coordinator, the president of the conference young adult organization, the conference youth organization, the chair of the annual conference college student organization, one young person between the ages of 18 and 30 from each district and one young person between the ages of 12 and 17 from each district.
The annual conference is the basic unit of the connectional system and refers both to a yearly meeting of its members as well as the organizational structure that equips local congregations to do its ministries and provide a connection beyond the local church.
On Tuesday Rev. Flo and Rev. Julie taught a Sexual Ethics class to a group of new incoming pastors.
Grace, Peace (and Joy)
Can you believe the month of June is here! School is almost out, June 1 is Ascension Sunday, June 8 is Pentecost, June 15 is Father’s Day and Trinity Sunday, and June 21 is the first day of summer. Wow! Now let’s turn our focus first on Pentecost Sunday – the joyous celebration of the coming of the Holy Spirit to comfort and empower the church for her mission. <!–split–> Pentecost (from the Greek pentecoste, meaning “fiftieth”) begins the 6th season of the Christian year, the Season after Pentecost. It commemorates the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on all people 50 days after the resurrection of Jesus Christ. The event of Pentecost is the fulfillment of our Lord’s promise to bestow the Holy Spirit on all of His people. Pentecost is also the birthday of the New Testament Church. Friends, the Liturgical calendar tells us in June, we celebrate Father’s Day, June 15th.
As a Father, you probably always knew that your role in parenting was important. Most fathers do. Still, it has not been as clearly defined as a mother’s side of parenting. In my years of experience I have observed that fathers parent differently from mothers. They play more with their children. Their actions are more physical and less intimate with more of a reliance on humor and excitement.
I have been told that a father’s more playful interactive style is important in teaching a child self-control.
And these interactions appear to be central to the child’s ability to maintain strong, fulfilling social relationships in later years. I believe (if a father is present) that a father should be involved from the very beginning and create times and activities in which the father cares for the baby entirely alone. Tell how you (the father) feel. If you are fearful, frustrated, or jealous of the time your wife spends with the baby, discuss these feelings with your wife. Tune in to your children. Don’t rely on their mother to read what a child wants or needs. Accept your partner’s parenting style. It may be different from yours, but that doesn’t make it wrong. Have patience. Children might not immediately respond to dad who suddenly wants to be more involved – but give it a try!
Happy Father’s Day to all Dads!
— Grace, Peace (and Joy), Pastor Flo