The 3rd Sunday after the Epiphany/Scout Sunday/January 22, 2020
Just these lines, my friends …
… to say what a glorious weekend past: serving at the Charlotte Rescue Mission with a group of Bridge Builders (composed of members from Matthews UMC and Mt Moriah Missionary Baptist Church), beautiful worship on Sunday in the Sanctuary (watch here), the MLKing march to Town Hall on Sunday, plus a great breakfast and inspiring worship on Monday at Mt. Moriah Missionary Baptist Church. A special “thank you” to all who participated in the events of the MLKing Weekend. Bless you for showing up to build bridges of hope and love.
Leonard Cohen was a Canadian singer-songwriter, poet, and novelist who died in 2016. He was an insightful word-crafter. In one of his songs he wrote, “There is a crack in everything. That’s how the light gets in.”
Cohen was right about people. We all have cracks. We’re all broken, hurt, damaged, flawed, injured. There are no exceptions. No one gets into and out of this world without pain.
And he was right about how God’s healing light breaks in on us—at the point of our brokenness. In this way, brokenness is the source of our blessing, if we will be courageous enough to expose our brokenness to the light.
Jesus answered them, “Do you finally believe? In fact, you’re about to make a run for it—saving your own skins and abandoning me. But I’m not abandoned. The Father is with me. I’ve told you all this so that trusting me, you will be unshakable and assured, deeply at peace. In this godless world you will continue to experience difficulties. But take heart! I’ve conquered the world.”
John 16:31-33 (The Message)
- Craig Estep – Our Staff Parish Relations Committee has removed the “Interim” designation from his role that he has so ably performed with us the last few months. Craig is now our permanent Director of Worship and Music Arts. He will continue in his part-time work for us as he completes his school year with Charlotte Latin. Then on July 1, he will be all ours. Thanks be to God! We are so fortunate to have him in our midst.
- John Woodall – John has joined us as Instrumental Director of Contemporary Worship for the 9:30 worship hour. If you haven’t heard John sing, make sure you take the time to do so. What a voice! Welcome, John!
- Del Funderburk – If you’ve seen our Sanctuary Choir on a Sunday morning, you’ve seen Del in his handsome bowties. Del is a Godsend to us as our new Director of Facilities & Property Management. Del and his wife, Reba, have been a part of our congregation now for a number of years. He is already making a tremendous impact.
- Talford McClain – Talford is new to our team as one of the Facility Maintenance community staff. You will love seeing him around with his smile and upbeat spirit.
To see a listing & photos of all of our staff, please visit the staff page on our church website.
Upcoming Dates & This Sunday (January 26) in Worship
We have some wonderful events coming up that I’d like you to consider attending. As in all of our church correspondence, you can click on the underlined text links to see event details: Humanitarian Border Crisis Info Session (Jan. 22, 6:30 pm, The Commons); United Worship to Celebrate 10 Years of CCH (Feb. 2, 11 am in Sanctuary); Celebrating 10 Years of Global Impact (Events Feb. 9, 16, 23); 9th Racial Bridge-Building Forum (Feb. 18, 7 pm, Matthews Presbyterian); Shrove Tuesday Pancake Supper (Feb. 25); Ash Wednesday Service (Feb. 26, 7 pm) & Centering Prayer Class (March 14, 10:00 – 3:00).
I’m looking forward to seeing you on Sunday (January 26) in one of our morning Sanctuary services. My sermon is titled “The Fatal Fantasy of Perfection” from Psalm 118:19-25. Pastor Roldan’s message at 12:30 pm in our Spanish-speaking service in the Sanctuary will finish the 20/20 Vision series from Philippians 3:12-14. The subject will be “Leaving Your Past Behind.” Pastor Roldan writes, “I have discovered in my Latin context that many times we stop in time, and God is always moving forward with us. In fact, I have learned that if we fall we must always fall forward and not get stuck. But the good thing about the life of faith is that the work of the Lord does not stop because of our failures. God wants us to move forward.”
This Sunday, January 26, is also Scout Sunday. During our 11:00 service, we will celebrate the hard work of our Scouts. Scouting continues to be an exciting part of Matthews United Methodist Church. Boy Scout Troop 39 was founded in 1941, and Cub Scout Pack 214 was founded in 1971. Girl Scout Troops have been based at our church for years. This past fall MUMC founded a new all-girls Scouting unit, Troop 139. These groups have brought many families into our church each week for meetings and activities. Our programs help children and youth develop positive character traits and practical life skills.
At MUMC, I hope you’ll join me in trusting for more love, more laughter, more community, more healing, more growth, and more transformation to be brought into our midst. While in our global church there is reason for concern with change on the horizon, let us not forget there is still so much to be thankful for because we are part of such an empowering and life-giving congregation.
I’m Continuing to Count My Blessings, as your
Pastor and friend,
Dr. Charles (Chuck) W. Wilson II
Did you know the Memorial Garden & Columbarium team is at 93% of the goal to move the project forward? Stop by the Sanctuary Reception Area this Sunday 8:00 am – 12:30 pm to speak to a committee representative.
Did you know that Sarah Halso, a 7th grader at MUMC, is performing in “La Boheme” with Opera Carolina at the Belk Theater? Sarah is the daughter of Hope and Matt Halso.