A Letter of Reference for the Poor

A Letter of Reference for the Poor

Published October 11, 2023

20th Sunday after Pentecost
Just these lines, my friends …

… to say the weekend was such an important, impactful one for us: our Scouts and BBQ all weekend, Bingo Night (photos below), United Methodist Men, and all kinds of Saturday training. Then Sunday brought dynamic Family Worship in the Gym, and for those in the Sanctuary, didn’t I tell you? … Rev. Robert Fuquay is one of the finest preachers you will ever hear. I’m so grateful to call him my friend and that he and Susan were able to invest several years of their lives in MUMC back in the mid-1990s. If you missed Sunday morning, you can worship with us here. Make sure you listen all the way through to the unbelievably inspiring Praise Team singers & musicians at 9:30 and the Sanctuary Choir and Orchestra at 11 am. And if you missed Rob and Susan’s presentation on Sunday night about the future of The United Methodist Church you can watch here. My heart is broken for not being in-person with all of you. But thanks be to God, I was able to join you online.

Here are a couple of quotes from Rob on Sunday:

  • “God’s grace does not put-up fences.”
  • “God is looking for communities that will draw bigger and bigger circles.”

Important words for us.

If you’d like to dig deeper, join the Faithful & Inclusive study (written by Rob) beginning this coming Sunday at 10:45-12:15. It will be led by Steve & Wendy Hall. Register by tomorrow (Thursday) here.

As I mentioned last week in my Just These Lines, it has been a challenging week for the Wilson family. It began early on Sunday morning with my wife Karen’s father being hospitalized. Then, on Wednesday, I went into the hospital with walking pneumonia and a blood clot in my lung. By the way, if you want to get in on a creative idea of mine, we’re working on a friends and family plan with Novant Matthews. We’ll see about getting you included if you’d like. Ha! Ha! Please do pray for us, though, as we move through these challenging days.

A very special thank you to Paul Craig for stepping away from his sabbatical for a few days and helping me with the wedding rehearsal and wedding of Ashlyn Scruggs (daughter of LuAnn and the late Marvin Scruggs) and Michael Ricketts on Friday & Saturday, leading worship on Sunday, and then guiding our time together on Sunday evening with Rob and Susan Fuquay. Have I told you lately how much I love Pastor Paul? Paul is so much more than just a colleague. He is my brother from another mother.

One other mention: We host our first ever Potato Drop on our site on October 21. It will be incredible! What a splendid way for the family to participate in something simple but so meaningful in making food available for hungry people. Volunteer. Pitch in. Serve. You are needed.

Steve and Susan Higgins are new to our church and they are such great gifts to us. Steve sent me a little potato humor the other day. He tells me I am in for a root awakening. You be the judge.

  • What do you call a potato at a football game? A spec-tater.
  • Why did the potato cross the road? Because there was a fork in the road ahead.
  • Why was the potato so quiet? It was a medi-tater.
  • Why do potatoes make good detectives? Because they keep their eyes peeled.

Wednesday Devotional

My title for this week’s devotional is, A Letter of Reference from the Poor.

Upcoming Events

  • This Sunday, October 15 – All worship services in the Gym due to Sanctuary upgrade work.
  • Potato Drop – Saturday, October 21, 9:00-12:00. Sign up to volunteer! Details.
  • All-Church Gathering – Monday, October 23, 7:00-8:00 pm. Details.
  • RISE (Race: an In-depth Spiritual Examination) – Anti-racism workshop training for clergy & lay church members sponsored by the Metro District of the Western NC Conference; held at MUMC October 26 & 27. Details.
  • 5th Sunday Fellowship with Mt Moriah, Matthews Presbyterian, and MUMC – Sunday, October 29, 12:15 at Mt Moriah. Make reservations here by Oct 24.
  • Trunk or Treat – Sunday, October 29, 6-7:30 pm. This event is for everyone! Details.
  • New Studies: Faithful & Inclusive by Rob Fuquay, A Praying Life & The Lectio Course. View All

This Sunday in Worship

We invite you to join us this Sunday IN THE GYM at 8:15 am (Traditional; in person only), 9:30 am (Contemporary; in person or online here), 11:00 am (Traditional; in person or online here) or 12:30 (Spanish; in person or on demand here).

All our worship services will be in the Gym. Our repair work from the Christmas Day frozen pipes has begun and will last through October 20. It will be a fresh look with new carpeting and flooring for our main hallways. Thank you for your adaptability for Sunday.

In our Spanish-speaking CCH (Centro Cristiano Hosanna) community, Pastor Roldan continues the worship series on Biblical Stewardship, preaching from Matthew 25:14-28 and his sermon is titled: We are the Servants, Not the Lords.

And this coming Sunday, as mentioned above, as we gather in the Gym, we’ll return from a two-week hiatus on our fall worship series, Pathways to Discipleship. In this series we are seeking to bring intentionality and purpose to every day. This is our way of creating tangible habits that support our heart’s intentions. Our next step takes us to the Pathway of Invitation (from Acts 4:13, 16-20) where a person who does life in the Way of Jesus seeks to love people enough to invite them to experience God’s love and become fully devoted followers of Jesus.

Do you know of someone in your world looking for a place to belong? I know of an outstanding community of faith at 801 South Trade Street in Matthews. Why don’t you bring them along with you on Sunday? Maybe doing church in our Gym will be a little less threatening to them.

And now, as always, during these strange, uncertain, and hopeful days, remember … God does God’s best work in moments like this.

In the Community. For the Community.
Dr. Charles (Chuck) W. Wilson II

Did you know that volunteers serve as Reading Buddies at Greenway Park Elementary School? Volunteers are needed to be Reading Buddies for Kindergarten children! Each Friday beginning October 27, 9:30-10:00, volunteers go as a group to read with a special friend. If you would like to serve or have questions, contact Tina Fincher at 704-904-4446.

Did you know that approximately 50 ushers and greeters attended an informative training session on Saturday, October 7 led by Rob Hunter, Julia Sain and Kristy Karschner? They covered safety protocols, how to be sensitive to the needs of people with disabilities, and a brief tutorial on CPR & how to use the AED. There was nothing but praise for this training and everyone gained valuable information to better serve the people of Matthews.

Did you know that you can drive a Classic Mini car into The Commons area? That’s just what happened this Sunday at Family Worship, as families enjoyed learning all about Integrity and the importance of being truthful, based around the theme of Classic Cars, because “What’s inside matters most.”