From Our Pastor

October Planning

Posted 11 October, 2018 by Pastor Keith Ritchie

I mention as we worship this Sunday that I really had not planned on spending time with the book of Job in worship. However, as I discovered the 23rd Chapter of Job to be scripture assigned to this Sunday, I realized there are those times we need to spend with Job. Job, we remember, is a righteous man who loses everything and suffers terribly, all the while wondering "why" and wondering where God is to be found as he suffers. Though not the happiest of scriptures, this is a powerful word which we are all called to embrace from time to time - including this Sunday.

As we approach worship this Sunday, we also plan for worship through October, especially for October 28. At the 11am service on the 28th, we celebrate "Children's Sabbath." This is a time of worship in which children's ministries - puppets and choirs - provide leadership, and the children of the church proclaim scripture and other words of faith. I am excited as we anticipate this time of worship and celebrate the gifts of these children. Please keep the children, their families, and church leadership in prayer as they prepare to lead worship on October 28.

Related to children's ministries, First UMC will participate in the Uptown Halloween event on October 31st. This means we will be present at the Church Street entrance to the church, handing out candies and other goodies to our neighbors. With this ministry as with all others, volunteers are needed; see me or Annette Huckfeldt if interested.

We have received some inquiries regarding leadership of youth and related ministries, inquiries to be considered by the Staff-Parish Relations Committee. Related to youth ministries, SPRC is to meet with Evan Dermott on October 17th. Evan is the local Director of Young Life, a ministry to high school students. Evan has had an office for this ministry at the church for over a year.  As SPRC meets with him, we are hoping to find those ways we can be of support to one another regarding reaching youth with the gospel of Christ.

Our District Superintendent, Janine Howard, has scheduled both the Danville District Conference and our Charge Conference for October 20th at Fairview UMC, Danville. In addition to the sharing of ministry ideas and resources with other district churches, Martha Stokes, a Virginia Conference delegate to the General Conference of the UMC, will be present to speak to preparations for this special called conference.

As we draw closer to hosting the Martinsville Community Care Collaborative in the Uptown Ministry Center on November 3rd, we host another planning meeting this week. As we do so, I encourage you to give some time to volunteer for this ministry. Setup will take place on Friday, November 2; this is a big job with many opportunities to serve. On November 3, we especially need "navigators" to help the guests find their way from one area to another. A link by which to sign up for the event is found by clicking here, or you may simply call the church office.