Yes I am, and I pray that I might have the strength to become more foolish in the eyes of the world!! My friends, Christ stood out in the crowd because he said things that most others would not say and because of those words and actions many thought him a fool. We know that he was not a fool but sharing with us about how to truly be reflection of God's love and live out the way of God's kingdom on earth. We are going to explore that this week as part of our series "The Cross: Now What?" and this week we realize that to follow Christ we must become foolish in the eyes of the world. I think it will be thought provoking service and you might want to invite others to join us.
I know each week when I attach the bulletin to the blog there is a good portion of the information that doesn't change much so many people don't read it. Be warned there are often directions about worship to prepare you for changes and to give directions. In addition there are often several announcements in the bulletin about changes, upcoming events, opportunities, that if not read you might feel a little out of the loop. Please try to read them and if you don't please be gracious as we continue to make changes.
I want to lift up a couple of changes that have been implemented to help keep us safe but also to keep the service running smooth for both those in the sanctuary and online. We have a prayer box on the sign-in table at church and in front of them are prayer cards. If you want a praise, prayer, or witness to be lifted up in the service fill out the card and put i in the prayer box on the table BEFORE the service and they will be included. You can write them up ahead of time at home on a piece of paper and put them in also. For our online friends you can email to Karen Wivell ahead of time and let her know that you want something to be included in prayer time.
In addition we have a time of announcements at the end of the service. I often have a list of items I plan to highlight but if you have an announcement you want to occur email me ahead of time (firstname.lastname@example.org) or bring it written out for me to read.
Also, the front two pews near the parlor will be for "families" with younger children. Now you can be an older person and sit there even if you didn't bring a child with you but know that we are going to have children in that area. It allows the kids to be able to see everything that is going on, it allows the kids and those helping them to have the easiest access to run to the bathroom, it also allows the easiest "escape" when the real little ones start to get upset and cry. We will be putting some quiet activities that the children can use it in that area too.
Attached is the bulletin that you can view or print out for Sunday morning. Here is some further details about ways to access our services this Sunday at 8am and 10:30am both in person and online. Just a reminder that 8am is a traditional service with most of the songs being hymns and the 10:30am service is contemporary with newer praise songs.
When coming to worship in the sanctuary some things have changed. You will need to wear a mask or face shield into the building. If you forget or do not have a mask or face shield a mask will be provided to you to wear while you are in the building. There will be a sign-in station where you can get a bulletin and other items so keep walking when you come through the door until you get to the sign-in table. At the sign-in table there will also be a place to put prayer requests because we will not be sharing them during the service, you can also e-mail your pray requests to Karen Wivell. We will not pass the plate during the service but your monetary offering can go in the wooden box that is next to the sign-in table. There are hand sanitizer stations throughout the church and they are there for you to use them. You are NOT required to have received a vaccination in order to attend worship. In the sanctuary we have not roped off pews so there is not a guarantee of being 6 feet apart. I will not be wearing a mask while on the altar and any singers we have on the altar will not be wearing mask. IF you are concerned about being at least 6 feet apart from everyone else we will have the downstairs set up with chairs that are spaced over 6 feet apart and the service will play on the television down there. Currently, we will not be having a fellowship time downstairs in order to increase health safety.
We will start the Facebook Livestream at 7:50am and 10:20am and you will see messages on the screen and hear music playing. This is the best option if you want to interact with others online. Feel free to chat to each other before and during the service. You can put prayer requests in the chat. This is great way to be able to interact with others if you watch it live with others in your church family who are staying home but want to worship as part of an online community. It will continue to be there to watch later and feel free to share or create watch parties in order to share it with others.
You can catch this livestream on our Toms Creek UMC channel at: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCX6E7eCwH2ZGYspkSCF0CGw/featured. We will TRY to start the YouTube Livestream at 7:50 am and 10:20am and you will see announcements scroll and hear music playing. This format is best if you are watching on a television or large screen with lots of people gathered around. You can have it fill the whole screen and just watch it without any distractions. There is a way to chat on YouTube but it normally has a lot less people and is normally a lot less chatty than the our Facebook livestream. If you subscribe to our channel it will let you know when we go live in future weeks. Later in the day another shorter version of the service is posted but for this coming series I recommend taking in the entire worship experience.
You can go to our website here https://www.tomscreekumc.com/service-videos and by Monday morning there should be a version of our service. Sometimes the whole service is there instead of the shortened version depending on different factors. Sometimes it will be from the 8am service and sometimes it will be from the 10:30am service.
For just the 10:30am service you can use a phone to listen to our service by calling 857-799-9465 from any phone starting at 10:20 am. This will only have sound coming through and you will not be able to see anything that is occurring. If you would like we can we make a DVD of the service for you to watch just let the church office or Pastor Heath know.
you can text 844-406-0358 with an amount as the text. It will set up to give over text and from then on you just put in the amount and your donation to the church will go right through
you can go to our website and hit the donate button on our webpage, https://www.tomscreekumc.com
you can mail your offering to:
Tom's Creek United Methodist Church
10926 Simmons Road
Emmitsburg, MD 21727
My hope that each of us and our church start to become more foolish in the eyes of the world. We are called by Christ to act and live different than those around us who do not follow Jesus. Do we, or do we blend in with the crowd except for our weekly Sunday morning time of worship? Does the gift we received from Jesus Christ on the cross require more from us than we think? You may not like the answer but let's journey together as we explore what Jesus has called us to as those that claim to follow him.