United Methodist Church

Faith for the Future

Praise for the Past


Pastor's Blog

Mark's Minutes

Worship Service Changes

Sunday, June 10, 2012

A Loving Listening Session About Worship Today at 4PM in the Sanctuary

The introduction of a traditional service at 9AM and a praise service at 11AM every Sunday has a number of people unhappy for various reasons. Some have said last Sunday’s service had too much praise singing and standing. Some have said they prefer the schedule the way it was. Some believe a praise service should be during the earlier worship hour and not at 11AM. Therefore, let’s come together today at 4PM in the sanctuary to talk and listen and share and pray about our worship offerings at Redwine UMC. Whether you prefer praise worship or traditional at 9 or 11AM, I hope you’ll come. I know that together, in a spirit of genuine Christ-like love, we will help each other on this important aspect of our church life.

Some have asked, “Why and how did this change come about?” I want to take a moment and speak to that.

There are two main reasons why change from a praise service that is highlighted by Crosswinds music two Sundays a month to every Sunday at 11AM.

First, and most importantly, to reach the lost for Jesus Christ. Church health and growth experts say that persons today who don’t know Jesus Christ or the love of God and church (including the emerging generation) are more comfortable with a praise style of worship. This is the number one reason to move from two Sundays at 11AM to every Sunday at 11AM. To reach the lost for Christ.

Secondly, church attendance numbers also show that the 11AM service is still the most attended worship hour. Unchurched persons who “try out” church are more likely to step through the doors at 11AM. Ultimately, the move to praise every Sunday at 11AM instead of two Sundays a month is about …..others.

As to how the move came about, this was the process. The worship music team and I, who meet and talk often about worship music, prayerfully and passionately sought the guidance of God and spiritually felt compelled by God to offer this now. We met several times in the spring to talk and plan. Months ago, we looked toward June 1 as a starting time. A few months ago, I met with some of our ministry team leaders to talk about this (and other) ministry initiatives the Holy Spirit is leading us toward. Receiving support to reach out for the lost through praise worship every Sunday at 11AM, the music team and I continued to pray and plan and now provide.

Many of you are happy and excited about this worship arrangement. Many of you are not. So, let’s come together and love and talk and listen and share and pray. Let’s pray earnestly for God’s presence and that we will all seek His guidance on our worship offerings.

God bless you. I love you. Your Pastor and Friend, Mark

Special Days

Sunday, June 03, 2012

Today’s Special Offering

As you know, during our offering time this morning we all have an opportunity to give a small “above and beyond” offering to support this year’s Annual Conference Bishop’s Special Offering. This year’s offering will go to support World Methodist Evangelism, including the World Methodist Evangelism Institute. Each church in the North Georgia Conference (about 1,000 churches) is asked to give to this offering. Then, on Wednesday of Conference Week (June 13 at 2PM) delegates from each local church will place his or her church’s offering into the collection plate. God bless us all as North Georgia United Methodists join together to help further the name, spirit, and movement of Jesus Christ all over the world. If you’re writing a check, make it out to Redwine UMC and notate it for “Annual Conference Special Offering.”

Relay for Life

We’ve had an exceptional year again supporting Relay for Life! We have all been blessed and inspired by the enthusiastic and effective leadership of this year’s Team Captain, Jacob Frier. Jacob, we’re proud of you and we thank you for stepping into this important role and leading us in such an amazing way to support the cause of defeating cancer through Relay for Life.

Relay for Life (RFL) gives us all a chance to make a difference for those fighting cancer and for those working hard to discover effective treatments that will fight and, hopefully one day, eradicate cancer. Dr. Gordy Klatt is the founder of RFL. A colorectal surgeon, Klatt organized a cancer run/walk in May, 1985, in Tacoma, Washington. For 24 hours, Klatt and just a few supporters walked and ran around the circular track at Baker Stadium at the University of Puget Sound, Tacoma. That night, Klatt walked and ran 83 miles. Through per mile support, Klatt raised $27,000 that night and the rest is history. Dr. Klatt’s vision turned into Relay For Life that today has over 5,200 events in the United States and has raised more than $4.5 billion to save lives. In addition, the American Cancer Society licenses twenty non-governmental cancer organizations in other countries to hold RFL events to battle cancer across the globe.

Let’s include Dr. Gordy Klatt in our prayers today. A few weeks ago, he was diagnosed with stomach cancer. He has surgery scheduled this month and today is taking chemotherapy. For his pioneering work in fighting cancer through Relay for Life, this year Dr. Klatt was awarded the 2012 Humanitarian of the Year Award from his alma mater, the University of St. Thomas.

Thank you and God bless you Dr. Gordy Klatt, the millions of people who have supported RFL, the victims and survivors of cancer, Jacob Frier, and all of you who remember and walk and give and pray.

Your Pastor and Friend, Mark