"The Way Forward"
In just a few days, delegates from all over the globe will meet in St. Louis for a special session of the General Conference. These delegates, half laity and half clergy, will continue a conversation regarding human sexuality that has been happening during the General Conference sessions (which normally meet every four years) since 1972. I invite you to join me in prayer for all of the delegates, Bishops, and leadership of the UMC as they discern the leading of the Holy Spirit during this special session of the General Conference.
I've had several conversations with members of Eureka UMC regarding the General Conference. Some of the conversations were around the issue of homosexuality. Others have been centered around, "what does this mean for Eureka UMC?" And still others have asked, "why haven't we been talking about this during our worship services?" These are all great questions and this blog does not provide the space for a deep dive into the complexities of this issue that has been discussed in the United Methodist Church for 47 years.
I can, however, provide some insight into some of the bigger questions and concerns that have been raised. These discussions regarding the General Conference are 'insider' discussions. For this reason, Sunday morning worship services aren't the best times or place for these types of conversations. We have been posting information and links in our weekly newsletter for the past several weeks. I will also be leading a meeting, "Special General Conference Q & A", on Tuesday, March 5th at 7:00 pm in the Sanctuary.
What does this mean for the United Methodist Church and more specifically Eureka United Methodist Church? Here is my understanding of what will be happening next week and in the years to follow. Next week, the delegates to the General Conference will be considering three options offered by the Commission on "A Way Forward" along with 55 other petitions. What is currently 'on the table' and what is drafted and voted on (assuming this can all happen in three days with over 800 delegates and through the 4 official languages of the GC) is just one of many steps according to the polity (governance) of the UMC. If anything is decided during this General Conference, it will then require a vote by every local Conference around the globe. This process will likely not begin until 2020 and will not end until all local Conferences worldwide have completed their voting process. It generally takes a full year for any petition like this to travel through all of the worldwide Annual Conference Sessions. Just like the General Conference, the voting in the local Conferences is carried out by an equal number of laity and clergy representing every church in every Conference.
Here is what I believe. We can be consumed by the General Conference and "A Way Forward". Or, we can be consumed by the Mission given to us by Jesus, to make new disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world. I believe "The Way Forward" is to fully live into God's unique vision for EUMC and to advance God's Kingdom through the Mission of Jesus Christ. We can only do one of these well; which one will we choose?
Consumed by the Mission,
Our Bishop, Bob Farr, just released this short video message regarding GC2019:
During our year of discernment, God kept leading our Vision Team to the words Connect, Thrive, and Overflow through the imagery of a river. This Sunday the vision team is going to reveal a companion piece to the new Vision.
Jenny Babb will be preaching from John 1 on Sunday. Gay Herron, a longtime member of Eureka UMC and one of our Vision Team members, will also be sharing this companion piece during both worship services via video.
We gather for two distinct expressions of worship on Sunday mornings at our 8:30 am and 9:45 am worship services
Our JAM (Jesus and Me) Children's Ministry meets at 9:45 am for children ages 3 years old through the fifth grade. Childcare is available for children birth through 2 years old in our nursery during both worship service times on Sunday mornings
Watershed: A New Vision
We will begin a new sermon series that will cast the new vision for Eureka UMC.
February 24, "Watershed: The River at Eureka" (Jenny Babb)
March 3, "Watershed: A New Thing" (Pastor Tim)
The Road to Recovery Sermon Series
We invite you on a journey through the season of Lent as we discover the only hope for our recovery from sin, death, addiction, despair, fears, doubt, hurts, habits, and hangups: Jesus Christ.
March 10th "The First Step to Freedom"
March 17th "Where to Get Help When You Hurt"
March 24th "Letting Go and Coming Clean"
March 31st "Making Changes and Repairing Relationships"
April 7th, "Maintaining Momentum"
April 14th "Recycling My Pain"
Ash Wednesday, March 6, 2019
6:00am-8:30am "Ashes to Go" Join Pastor Tim at St Louis Bread Company in Eureka for a complimentary cup of coffee, a brief prayer, and the imposition of ashes on your wrist or forehead. This may be a great option on your way to work or as you are on your way to drop your children off to school.
6:00pm-6:25pm, "Ashes to Go" This will be a great option for busy families with young children; just stop by the church for a brief prayer with your family and the imposition of ashes on your forehead or wrist.
6:30 pm "Ash Wednesday Worship Service". We invite you and your family to join us for a special mid week worship service with music led by our praise team and our choir. The service will conclude with the imposition of ashes on your forehead or wrist.
We will again be offering THREE worship services on Easter! We will be retelling the Good News of the resurrection of Jesus Christ through inspiring music and a sermon titled "This is Love".
All three Easter worship services will be on Sunday, April 21st
7:00 am "Sunrise Service" with music led by our praise team
8:30 am Traditional Service with music led by our choir
9:45 am Contemporary Service with music led by our praise team.
There will be no JAM (Jesus and Me) children's ministry on Easter Sunday.
Our nursery will be open during all three worship services for children ages birth through two years old.
Our Family Room Worship Site will be open for families with young children at 9:45 am
"A Special Session of the General Conference of The United Methodist Church takes place February 23-26, 2019 in St. Louis, Missouri. The purpose will be to receive and act on a report from the Commission on a Way Forward based on the recommendations of the Council of Bishops. The Commission was authorized to examine paragraphs in The Book of Discipline concerning human sexuality and to explore options to strengthen church unity." umc.org
This special session of the General Conference will likely gain attention from regional and even national news organizations. Pastor Tim will be leading "Special General Conference Q & A" on Tuesday, March 5th at 7:00pm in the Sanctuary.
Live Stream Video Equipment Update
Over the past two years we have made some advances in our live streaming services. We began with a retired I phone. Last year, we received a special gift from a family that allowed us to purchase a Livestream (MEVO) camera, an I pad to control it, and funding for a mini mix board to import the sound from the soundboard into our video live stream on Sunday mornings.
Our online church community continues to grow. For many families, they will join us online for months before they ever attend a worship service onsite on a Sunday morning. It is also a great option for families who cannot be present due to an illness or travel plans. We also recently 'soft launched' our new Family Room Worship Site which relies heavily on the live stream to accommodate the growing number of families that connect through this new site.
We have determined that to best serve our growing online church community and our growing Family Room Worship Site families that we need to upgrade our video production platform. Our existing MEVO Livestream camera will continue to be used as a secondary camera. In order to provide excellence in worship, we believe that a high quality 'tilt, pan, zoom' digital camera designed for professional live streaming applications will be the most beneficial. This will also require the Livestream video editing hardware and software. This plan also includes hardwiring the two flat screens in the Commons Area plus the four new flat screens in the Family Room Worship Site so that whatever is happening in the sanctuary is being directly transmitted "in house" in 1080 HD video. We have a family that has also generously given us 18 very high quality, commercial grade, ceiling mounted speakers to replace our existing speakers and to provide new speakers in the Family Room Worship Site. The total cost for all of this will be $12,000.00 for materials and labor. Two families have already donated $1000.00 each towards this project, leaving us with $10,000.00 more to go. We believe it is important to have this new technology installed within the next few weeks so that we can be fully operational by Easter Sunday. If you would like to contribute to this important ministry, please contact Pastor Tim at email@example.com
This is truly an exciting time at Eureka UMC! We are casting our new, unique vision for Eureka UMC for 2019 and beyond. This has been the result of a year of prayer and discernment from our Vision Team as they listened and responded to the promptings of God's Holy Spirit.
This past Sunday we shared the third key word from the New Vision...Overflow. The Vision Team has discerned that God is calling us to be a church that values multiplication over addition; a church that is committed to advancing God's Kingdom by creating New Places for New People. The team believes that we are called to be 'one church with many locations'.
VISION TOWN HALL MEETINGS
We have scheduled three 'town hall' type meetings after our Watershed Vision Series has ended. These meetings will be led by members of our Vision Team and facilitated by our pastors. These meetings will provide a space to ask questions and to gain clarity around this new vision for Eureka UMC and what it means for you, what it means for us (as the church), and what it means for our community. Please choose the meeting that best fits into your schedule:
Monday, March 4th at 7:00 pm in the Sanctuary
Sunday, March 10th at 11:00 am in the Sanctuary
Thursday, March 14th at 7:00 pm in the Family Room Worship Site
Pastor Tim will be on vacation from Thursday, February 21st through Saturday, March 2nd. If you require pastoral care or if there is a pastoral emergency, please contact Pastor Suzanne Nicholson at 314-707-9206. She, along with our Congregational Care Ministers, will be available to assist you.
We had planned to introduce and commission our leadership teams during both worship services on Sunday, February 10th; the day of the ice storm. The teams will be introduced and commissioned during a worship service in March. Here are our leadership team members:
Larry Baner (chair, PPR chair, Trustee chair)
Susan Dudley (PPR)
Andy Smola (Trustee)
Lisa Koltun (Finance)
Doug McVicar (Lay Leader)
Sally Lippman (PPR)
Jeff Simmons (Trustee)
Carol Wellons (Finance)
Todd Shelton (Finance)
Amanda Oldenberg (Finance)
Doug Stallman (Lay Member, Trustee)
Amber Wood (PPR)
Committee on Nominations and Leadership Development
Pastor Tim Schulte (Chair)
Larry Baner (Vice Chair)
Doug McVicar (Lay Leader)
ELEVATION Adventure Camp
I’m stoked to be co-leading the ELEVATION Adventure Camp in COLORADO through the Next Generation Ministries of the Missouri Conference this summer! This amazing camp is for high school students. There are just 40 spots available statewide for this amazing camp. Interested? Open the link below or contact Pastor Tim at Tim.firstname.lastname@example.org Dates of the ELEVATION Adventure Camp is June 30-July 7, 2019. We do expect this camp to fill up quickly!
**The Missouri Conference is currently offering a $50.00 early registration discount
Summer 2019 Youth Mission Trip
We will again be partnering with Student Life Ministries this year for our Youth Mission Trip. We will be staying at the Windermere Conference Center just outside of Lake of the Ozarks from June 10-14. This will be a week full of worship, mission work, Bible study, and tons of fun! It is open to grades 6-12. For more information, contact Jenny Babb at email@example.com. We will be having an information meeting on Feb 10th at 11 am in the Confirmation Room. During this meeting, we will be discussing the specifics of the trip and answering any questions that the parents or students may have.
CCM’s are lay ministers who serve alongside our pastors to provide care for our church family. You may contact us by:
Calling the church office at (636) 938-6377
Fill in the prayer request card attached to the weekly worship bulletin.
Through our EUMC app or website (eurekaumc.org)
Contact a CCM on a Sunday morning Or call CCM Sue Engsberg at 314 707 8733
Holy Land Tour, December 2-11, 2019 plus optional tour to Petra, Jordan December 11-14.
In just over one year, a group of 24 youth and adults from EUMC will be heading to the Holy Land for an amazing and life transforming experience. Do you want to walk where Jesus walked? Want to see historical places of the Bible? Now is the time. EUMC is joining the Conference of United Methodist on a tour of Israel with an optional extension to Jordan. Join Group Leaders Pastor Tim and Sue Engsberg on this marvelous Holy Land Tour.
If you are interested in securing your spot or if you have any questions, please contact Sue Engsberg at firstname.lastname@example.org or 314/707-8733.