From Our Pastor

A Sower Went Out to Sow

Posted 14 July, 2017 by Pastor Keith Ritchie

"A sower went out to sow..."

With these words, Jesus begins one of his most familiar and beloved of parables. Yet while we are inclined to see this parable as a wonderful story inviting beautiful images and telling of a wonderful harvest, I am struck by the recklessness of the sower who sows seed as this man does in this parable. I think this is worth exploring, and look forward to doing so as we worship this Sunday.

As we worship we will remember our youth and their leadership. They leave Sunday morning for a week of mission work in Copper Hill, TN. It was a great joy to bless these youth in worship last Sunday; I trust you remember them in prayer as they serve Christ by serving others.

As we remembered last Sunday that Christ is always calling us and sending us, I hope you remember the many opportunities by which to serve Christ at FUMC. Such opportunities are before us this Saturday as the ministries of the Food Bank and Clothes Closet are before us. While volunteers are needed to assist our guests in receiving food and/or clothing, I am grateful that a prayer room has also been added to these ministries. As our guests receive food and clothing, it is wonderful they can also find a place and time for prayer.

As interviews with applicants for Director of Music Ministries have been held by our search committee, interviews with our top three candidates will be held for the next three Thursdays. Each Thursday, a candidate will meet with representatives from our Children's Choirs and then with the Chancel Choir. We have been pleased with both the quantity and quality of response for the position of Director or Music Ministries at FUMC. I am hopeful that from these meetings at church with our choirs, a new director will begin to lead the gifted music ministries of this church. Please keep this search in prayer.

The Henry Fork Service Center in Rocky Mount, a District Ministry long supported by FUMC, is celebrating its fiftieth birthday this year. As part of a yearlong celebration, Bishop Sharma Lewis will visit the center this Saturday, July 15th. From 1pm - 5pm, there will be dinner on the grounds, singing, sharing, and a message by Bishop Lewis. All are invited.

On Monday afternoon, Karen and I will receive training from the United Way regarding a database known as "Charity Tracker." We believe that by receiving such training, we will be better equipped to serve and refer our neighbors who come to the church for assistance. If interested in helping with this ministry, please let us know.

As you can see, First UMC supports many ministries as an uptown church where all are welcome, all worship, and all serve - to the glory of God. Your gifts help make these ministries happen, and you are given the opportunity to support these ministries online. Simply go to our website:, where you find the link to make a secure online gift in support of these ministries - thank you!