From Our Pastor

Proclaiming the Kingdom

Posted 6 July, 2017 by Pastor Keith Ritchie

As we worship this Sunday, we are reminded that while Jesus calls us to worship him; he also sends us in his service. The gospel lesson from Luke 10:1-12 tells of Jesus sending not just twelve disciples, but a total of seventy-two persons to proclaim the presence of the Kingdom of God. To remember that Jesus entrusts persons such as us with the work of proclaiming the Kingdom of God is quite an amazing thing.

It is appropriate we share this message this Sunday for during the 11am service we will commission and bless the youth and leadership of First UMC who be leaving for a mission trip on July 16th. They will serve for a week in Copper Hill, Tennessee. While I will not be going on this mission trip, I have wonderful memories of having served with Maegan Mitchell and our youth the past two summers. I am grateful to have experienced on these mission trips just how wonderful are the youth of this church, and how blessed we are to have the gifted leadership of Maegan. So I am very excited to anticipate an inspired week of worship for these youth and their leadership. I look forward to blessing these youth and to offering our prayers for them both in this time of worship this Sunday and during their time of service in Copper Hill.

I have spoken with the three top candidates we have identified during our search for a new Director of Music at FUMC. The plan now is to coordinate a time when these candidates can meet with our children's choirs and our chancel choir. We are working to make this happen as soon as possible; I trust you are keeping this search process and these conversations and meetings in your prayers.

The prayer ministry of the church takes place again on Wednesday, July 12th. You are invited to meet at the church at 10am for our monthly prayer walk. We will walk down Church Street to the police station for a brief time of prayer. As there is new leadership in place for the Martinsville Police Department, this seems to be an ideal time to offer our gratitude to those who serve this community and to lift these persons to God in prayer. As we name this prayer ministry as a vital part of the ministries of this church, I look forward to worship in August which is centered around the ministry of prayer, and of how we can claim and practice new and deeper ways to pray in the months to come.

As I remember you and this church in prayer, I ask for your prayers as well. The ministries before us are numerous and vital; we dare not pursue these ministries without the discipline of prayer.