From Our Pastor

Despite our Differences

Posted 26 July, 2018 by Pastor Keith Ritchie

We stray from the gospel of Mark this Sunday to spend some time with the letter to the Ephesians, chapter two.  As the words in verses 11-22 of this chapter speak to us of being reconciled to God despite all our differences, these words speak to us with great relevance. We know of great division and disagreement within this nation; we know of disagreement even within the church. This being so, I am grateful for this witness of scripture and welcome this witness speaking to us as we worship. I am also grateful for a solo to be sung by Kate Dietrich at the 11am service.

I met with the Rev. David Mucha yesterday in regard to the "Living Faithfully" study to be held at the church beginning Tuesday, September 18. As I have mentioned elsewhere, Rev. Mucha will be leading this class which will address "human sexuality and the United Methodist Church." I have enjoyed meeting with David, and know he brings great gifts and skill to his leadership of this class during the six weeks it will be offered. I hope you will take part in this study; registration is required.

Maegan Mitchell is leading a Sunday School Class for parents titled "Tech-Sensible Parenting" beginning August 5. During this four-week class, participants will look at various forms of technology and social media available to youth and children at this time, as well as consider the impact of such technology and media upon all ages. This very timely class will take place in the youth room on the third floor at 10am. Let Maegan know if you have questions.

The Missions Committee of the church has taken the initiative on doing home repair for Jaclyn Littlefeather. Jaclyn has helped with many ministries of First Church for many years, so we felt led to reach out to her so as to help fix up her home. In order to do this, members of the church will be going to Jaclyn's home near Spencer. You'll see further information about this ministry in the August newsletter. This Saturday is the first workday.

Many thanks to all of you who have helped feed our neighbors displaced by a recent fire at their nearby apartment complex. We continue with this ministry each Tuesday and Thursday morning. If interested, come to the church fellowship hall by 8:30am.

At yesterday's staff meeting, Laura Elkins, Director of the Early Learning Center, shared the impressive news that every four-year old in the ELC, required to take a Pre-Kindergarten Readiness Test, scored 100% on that test. This compares to 56% of four-year olds in the Piedmont Region of the state, and 85% of four-year olds in the Southside Region of the state. We congratulate Laura and the ELC Staff on such great work!