9th Sunday after Pentecost
Just these lines, my friends …
… to say that the halls of Matthews United Methodist (MUMC) were rumbling this past week with our Rainbow Campers. It was glorious. Thank you, Rainbow Express Ministries and our United Youth kids and staff who gave so much of themselves, through the week.
Though I was watching from Blowing Rock, worship on Sunday was grand! It was filled with beautiful music and an inspiring sermon from Pastor Paul. If you were participating in our 11:00 am worship service you experienced the debut of our Matthews UMC Orchestra. OH MY! Watch them here.
Pastor Paul continued our summer series, Why I am Enthusiastically a United Methodist Christian.” If you missed Sunday, you can watch his powerful sermon here.
I hope you’ll take a few minutes to watch my “Why I am Enthusiastically a United Methodist Christian – Part 2” devotional for today. I’ve created these videos to supplement what we are doing on Sunday mornings.
During Terrible Times
Dr. Kate Bowler is a source of great hope and encouragement for me these days. She is a Church Historian and professor in The Divinity School at Duke University. I think she is one of the most insightful persons I know of in the world today. I find myself devouring all of her writings.
She has been living with cancer the past 6 years. She has an important word to say to persons who just received that terrible diagnosis. She writes, “It is hard to be the person that just got the diagnosis. It feels surreal and terrible, and I’m sorry that it’s you. I really am.”
“Your world has been reordered. You are now at the center of a universe that you weren’t trying to create. But it’s not your fault that things are different now. It will be difficult to ask for the care you deserve. It will be difficult to remember that you are not the bad things. I know things have changed, but that doesn’t mean you’re less you.”
I would like to share a small care package from Dr. Bowler on how to love, support, and encourage people who have been on the other side of that terrible phone call (click here). I hope you will find it helpful to you or someone you love who has recently been diagnosed.
Dr. Bowler goes on to say, “There’s not enough language for being right alongside pain. For what to say and not to say (trust me, I’ve said them all too.) But maybe we need to speak less and just be present, regardless of whether we have the right words.”
We have many in MUMC who received the terrible news of a bad diagnosis. They are all around us. Let’s be sources of hope and strength for all of them.
Important Dates for Your Calendar
- July 25 – We will be celebrating Habitat for Humanity during worship and the many persons who made possible the most recent Habitat build.
- August 17 – Community Forum at Mt. Moriah Missionary Baptist Church, 7 pm.
- August 21 – Our 6th Annual Hug-A-Cop Event at Mt. Moriah Missionary Baptist Church. Drop in 4:00 pm – 8:00 pm for wonderful food and around the table conversations with friends from Mt. Moriah, First Baptist Matthews, Cross and Crown Lutheran and Matthews Presbyterian. All of this to say thank you to law enforcement in our community.
- August 22 – Back to School/Church celebration.
- August 29 – 5th Sunday Fellowship with our friends from Mt. Moriah Missionary Baptist.
- September 12 – Our 8:15 am worship service will return.
This Sunday in Worship
We invite you to join in person or online this Sunday at 9:30 am (contemporary), 11:00 am (traditional) or 12:30 (Spanish – in person only). In our Spanish-speaking CCH community, Pastor Roldan will be preaching from Isaiah 30: 15-18 with his message titled, Let’s Not Lose Our Seasoning.
At 9:30 and 11:00 am, I will return with a few stories from the family vacation (You know it is always fascinating when the Wilson tribe gathers for summer family vacay. Say a prayer for us.) and the continuation of our summer series on Why I am Enthusiastically a United Methodist Christian this Sunday. My sermon is titled Because I Need a Little Help from my Friends from Romans 12:4-18.
In addition, we have a wonderful new GodStory to share with you. It is the story of Celestine Gasirabo, his mom Marie, and brothers Innocent, Eric, John and Prince. I met them a few weeks ago when I was invited by Habitat for Humanity to pray a blessing over their new home. I was so moved by this family and their story that I wanted you to have time with them as well. Their story begins in a war-torn Congo, then 15 years in a refugee camp in Rawanda, and finally to Charlotte and a Habitat for Humanity home here in Matthews. The building of their home is your Global Impact dollars at work.
We will also welcome members of the board, staff and volunteer workers involved in Greater Matthews Habitat for Humanity. I know you will do everything to express your thanks for all they do to provide accessible, affordable housing for so many.
And now, as we are excitedly making our way slowly and carefully out of a global pandemic, may we never forget to remember … God does God’s best work in moments like this.
We are in this … together,
Dr. Charles (Chuck) W. Wilson II
Did you know Carolyn Perlman is now the teacher for the Elizabeth Patrick Sunday School Class? They will be starting a new study called “Christianity’s Family Tree” by Adam Hamilton on August 8 at 9:30 am in room 158. Please come and join in the class to learn of the history, theology, and distinctive emphases of eight different Christian denominations and faith traditions.
Did you know that seven new pieces of equipment, three large mesh umbrellas, and a Gaga Ball pit have been installed on our Playground? United Kids will host a Playground Dedication and fun time for the children immediately following Deep Family Worship on August 8 from 10:30-11:00 am. Bring the kids to play and enjoy popsicles!
Did you know that the flowers displayed around campus are from our very own Genesis Garden? Thank you to Julie Cochran and her dedicated team of volunteers for providing the colorful displays each week!