From Our Pastor

Palm Sunday Events

Posted 7 April, 2017 by Pastor Keith Ritchie

"He suffered under Pontius Pilate..."

This affirmation from the Apostles' Creed is before us this Sunday as we share the account from the gospel of John of Jesus before Pilate. With this scripture, we keep before us these significant conversations between Jesus and those he encounters in this gospel. Many thanks to Annette Huckfeldt for the powerful photograph accompanying this scripture in our Lenten Devotional.

Worship this Sunday also brings us to Palm Sunday. There will be a Palm Sunday processional; we will receive palms. The Children's Choirs will sing at 11am as well as the Chancel Choir.

On the afternoon of Palm Sunday, our Chancel Choir will present John Rutter's "Requiem." The choir has given great time and energy to this production (married to a member of the choir, I know this.) I hope you will support their efforts and know your Lenten journey greatly enriched by the music of this "Requiem."

What would this season be without an Easter egg hunt? Fortunately, we don't need to find out. All children are invited to an Easter egg hunt in the Uptown Ministry Center at 3:00 pm on Saturday. Have you seen glow in the dark eggs? Neither have I! Come see them this Saturday!

Again, I remind you of Holy Week services: Maundy Thursday at 7pm, Good Friday Crosswalk at noon, Good Friday at 7pm. On Easter morning, we will celebrate the resurrection of Jesus with a sunrise service - with a fire pit - at 7am. A light breakfast will follow in the fellowship hall.

With the news of the move of Ken McDonald to Texas in early May, a search committee has been formed to find new leadership for the music ministries of First UMC. This committee is to meet on Tuesday evening; please keep this committee and its efforts in your prayers. Remember Ken and Marge in prayer as well as they prepare for a new chapter in ministry with Acton UMC in Texas.

I also ask you to keep in prayer many in this church who now engage in many conversations regarding the stewardship ministries of this church. Next week, there will be a meeting of the stewardship committee; there will also be a meeting of those in stewardship and finance who seek to lead us to a balanced budget. While there are leaders in this church who seek to lead us faithfully in the stewardship ministries of this church, I'll take this opportunity to mention this: each of us plays a significant role in these stewardship ministries. In other words: your financial gifts to God and his church greatly influence these conversations.

Finally, I share that each conference of the United Methodist Church is asked to keep the ministries of the UMC in prayer, especially the work of the "Commission on a Way Forward." This commission, as I mentioned in our most recent newsletter, is entrusted with the responsibility of reviewing every statement in the UMC Book of Discipline regarding human sexuality. This Commission is doing so in anticipation of a called General Conference in 2019.