Greetings. Joe Kwiatkowski here again. I trust your week is going well; at least as well as can be expected during these times.

Pastor Nettie has told me on more than one occasion that I should share some of what I am learning.  So today I thought I would dabble in some early Methodist history. Don’t worry; I'll do my best to keep it interesting.

Here are some questions for you to look at:

  1. What known sins have you committed since our last meeting?
  2. What temptations have you met with?
  3. How were you delivered?
  4. What have you thought, said, or done, of which you doubt whether it be sin or not?
  5. Have you nothing you desire to keep secret?

Methodism did not start out as a church/denomination. Methodism was a movement within the Church of England, and John Wesley was an ordained minister in the Church of England. The original Methodists met in small groups, what we might think of as a Bible study or an accountability group. These groups, or “bands”, met weekly, usually on Thursday evenings, and during the band meetings, each member of the band was asked these questions and responded to them.

What’s interesting about these questions is that these were NOT questions asked by an ordained minister to his flock! These were questions asked by “plain old believers” to other “plain old believers”. Pastor Nettie has talked about walking the narrow path; these were brothers and sisters in Christ making sure we didn’t lose the road map and are still on the correct path. The band members were ministering to one another. I like this definition of “ministering”: “When we use what God has provided us to help others, we become ministers for Christ.”

We Methodists have a long history of “lay” ministry. “Lay people” is the term we use to describe the 97% of the United Methodist Church who are not ordained ministers. The band leaders and band members were lay people. The famous circuit riders of the American frontier were lay people.

Follower of Christ, have you ever thought about expanding your ministry? We minister to the body with food, with companionship, with financial support, with rides to medical facilities. Have you ever considered ministering to the spiritual health of others? Have you ever considered showing others the narrow path? Have you ever considered helping others stay on the narrow path?

TRIVIA HISTORY QUESTION: If Methodism did not start out as a church/denomination, when did it become one? And what major event (which I am certain you have learned about) caused the creation of the early Methodist church? I’ll answer Sunday morning, and if you don’t catch us on Facebook, I’ll also put it in next week’s letter.

I wish I could say I’ll see you on Sunday. Some of you I will. The remainder of you will be missed.

Joe Kwiatkowski


 

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October 25 Annual Budget Review and Conversation 12:00 Zoom Meeting
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November 1 Charge Conference Zoom Option
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In-Person Worship Information

FALL WORSHIP BEGINS SEPTEMBER 27TH
Doors will Open at 9:30 am for 10:00 am In-Person Worship.
All Worship Services will be streamed live on Facebook and uploaded to YouTube.

In-Person Worship Guidelines

Beginning September 27, We will have our 10:00 am in-person worship as well as on Facebook live and later uploaded to YouTube.  What will In-Person Worship Look Like? Well, it will be different, so here is what to expect when you arrive at church for worship…

  • MASKS ARE MANDATORY -- and must remain on for the entire worship (except if taking communion). If you don’t have a mask, one will be provided for you.
  • Motion Hand Sanitizing Stations are located at ALL entrances and throughout the building. Please use them frequently.
  • Doors will not open until 9:30 am for our 10:00 am worship – Please don’t plan on arriving early for coffee or mingling. UNFORTUNATELY, because of the virus, we will not have coffee and treats. You will need to go directly to your seat.
  • At the entrance, a greeter will check your registration information to see if anything has changed. All that registered will have their temperature taken—If your temperature is 100.0 or higher, you will not be allowed to come in. Please monitor your temperature and if it remains high please contact your family doctor.
  • In order to adhere to the 6-foot physical distancing requirement, upon entering the Narthex, an usher will seat you according to our established seating pattern.
  • To ensure you will have a seat, you must register online the week before worship to reserve your spot. If you don’t have internet access, you will need to call the office. If you have not registered, you will not be able to attend worship as our guidelines limit our capacity to 60 people.
  • There will be no Children’s Moment. Parents interested in Nursery Care, Children’s Church or Youth Group, MUST have Registered their children online.  Families will check their children in at the educational entrance and then proceed to worship. If you have any questions please call the office.
  • Once you are seated, we ask you remain in your pew…you may turn to talk to your neighbor; however, we ask YOU DO NOT GET UP AND WALK AROUND THE SANTUARY. As Ecclesiastes 3:5 reminds us, there is a time to refrain from embracing. We encourage you to express your love and fellowship with prayer hands or waving
  • At the end of the worship you will be ushered out, please remain in your pew until the usher directs you to leave—again we have a specific process so folks don’t walk past on another or congregating. When leaving please be respectful of the 6-foot physical distancing. Please DO NOT CONGREGATE at the doors to talk, there are people behind you who still need to leave safely. There is a season for all things. Let this be a season where we communicate our love through phone conversations, email messages, first class mail, facetime, skype, and zoom video conferencing so we will be alive when a vaccine becomes available.

Anyone who does not feel comfortable with these guidelines or is immunocompromised should continue to shelter in place and continue to engage in online services.


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