Join Us!

Hyde Park Community UMC will be sending a mission team to Samara United Methodist Church, Samara, Russia, June 22 – June 30, 2016. The mission team will be led by Kevin Betts and me.

Hyde Park Community UMC, and Samara UMC have been ministry partners since 1996. This trip will mark the 20th anniversary of our first trip to Samara. We will work alongside our Russian brothers and sisters in Samara UMC’s Helping Hand ministry, and be involved in other areas of outreach as directed by the Pastor of Samara UMC. In addition, we will be involved in some light renovation projects that will include painting. We will worship together, study together, and grow deeper in our relationship with God, through Jesus Christ, together.

Samara is the sixth largest city in Russia, with a population of 1.2 million people. Government support for those in need is very limited, and Samara UMC has stepped in to fill the gap. Through our partnership, we provide the spiritual, financial, and psychological help that sends the message, “you are not alone.”

This is a great opportunity to serve as the body of Christ and build relationships with our brothers and sisters from another culture. Join us, June 22 – June 30, 2016; we are in the final stages of putting together the Hyde Park Community Team, and we want to make sure you come with us!

Let me know if you have any questions, or would like to register for this life transforming experience; scholarships are available.

Other ways you can support our mission effort:

•We welcome your prayers. As the team from Hyde Park Community is assembled, pray that God will use each team member in powerful ways. Pray that all preparations align with God’s vision and calling. Pray that the ministry/outreach of Samara UMC brings healing and wholeness.

•Make a gift to the Global Outreach Lenten/Easter Offering (soon to come in your mail). The Lenten/Easter offering supports our mission partners, one of which is Samara UMC, and helps build the Hyde Park Community Mission Scholarship Fund. No one who feels called by God to join a mission team, should pass up an opportunity to participate because of lack of funds. It is a priority of Hyde Park Community to provide assistance as needed, and your generosity makes this possible.

May God’s blessings abound as together we make a difference in our community and in the world.

Pastor Doug

Worship @11 Begins this Weekend!

Excitement is building…we hope you can join us in worship this Sunday!
Because people connect with God in different ways, we are excited to announce our worship offerings this weekend: 8:00 and 9:30 am with our 88-rank pipe organ and adult choirs, and Worship @ 11 with our new praise and worship team.

Here are a few thoughts from our members about this new worship experience, Worship @ 11:

“The commitment HPCUMC is demonstrating by broadening worship offerings in order to reach more people of all ages for Christ is inspiring! I can’t wait to see how current, past, and future members of this congregation may be moved with the implementation of cutting edge technologies that give glory to God and touch ALL of our senses!” Amanda Baker

“By offering this new style of worship in the sanctuary, we are making a long awaited commitment to provide a worship experience for those who seek a more non-traditional service.” Steve Kramer

“I am looking forward to the many new possibilities and experiences that we will have together in this old and new space. I can’t wait.”
David Colaw

I am excited about the Worship @ 11 service. It will be exciting to see how God uses this different service for those outside of the church, and for those inside as well – to communicate in many different ways Jesus’ love for us. Sara O’Connor

“I am excited for the new service to begin because it is going to open the door for new people to be able to use their gifts.” Patrick Portman

“I am thankful to be part of a church family that listens; hopefully, to the Holy Spirit, and, consequently, to people! We have choices, and we can well afford to “move over a bit” in our tastes/views, etc. A loving family always looks out for each other.” Marietta Garber

I am looking forward to joining you in worship this weekend, celebrating God’s wonderful love for all of us this Sunday!

Peace,

Pastor Cathy Johns

I Choose You!

Close to 1,600 people were blessed through the five worship services offered Christmas Eve.  It was a wonderful evening of celebration, contemplation, and spiritual renewal.  At the 4:00 pm family service I shared my alternative text to Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer.  I have been asked by a number of people to share the text with the congregation.  The following is my concluding comments Christmas Eve.

God breaks into our world and proclaims: I choose you!  Rudolph’s song is our song.  You know the beloved song of Rudolph; through the birth of Christ Jesus, God rewrites the song for you and me:

Children of God our creator
Unique in every way
You are God’s beloved
Despite what others say.

All of the other children
May bully and reject your claim
Calling you an outsider
Darkness and discouragement came.

On this foggy Christmas Eve
The angel comes to say:
People who have lost your way,
God has chosen you this day!

Oh how my life’s transformed then
Beloved by God this night.
Gifted and accepted
I am God’s redeemed ‘n loving light!

Join us this Sunday as we continue with our sermon series, Resolutions.  Through Jesus Christ, God broke into our world and offers us life, love, healing, and wholeness.  Everyday we choose how we respond to this gift.  Resolve in 2016 to live positively as you embrace God’s gift.

In Christ,
Doug

Bishop Colaw’s Thoughts on Worship @ 11

Bishop Emerson Colaw, who served as senior pastor here from
1961-1980, writes about Worship @ 11, a new expression of worship, which begins on Sunday, January 24:
I would like to speak to the place of a new and innovative approach to worship, different from any tried in the past, at Hyde Park Community United Methodist Church. The Church faces challenges in the 21st century unlike any in recent generations. It is gratifying to see that our church leadership is interested in overcoming these challenges and willing to try new ways to do so.

It is well to remember that Hyde Park is following the long tradition of Methodism to be progressive. In the day of John Wesley, there were many churches. But many people remained unchurched. Wesley began preaching and teaching in the open air. It was called “field preaching.” In its day, this was a new and innovative approach that connected to the masses and attracted many to the “class meetings” which eventually became a new church movement.

Methodism was transferred to this country at a time when there were, similarly, many churches. There came into being a style of spreading the gospel called “circuit riders.” Many of our present day churches are a result of these circuit riders, who rode their horses from village to village, to meet these rural residents with the gospel. We must be as responsive and innovative today in reaching a younger constituency. Fifty per cent of Methodists today are over the age of 55. We must find ways of reaching a younger generation, just as Wesley and Asbury strove to meet and attract with a spirit that has long characterized our church.

If we hope to connect with people who are not part of the church, we must meet them in a way that starts where they are. In Wesley’s day, it was in the fields as coal miners came out of the mines, or on horseback into every little village. We should be doing so today.

If we look through our hymnals, we will see that Charles Wesley wrote many of the hymns we hold dear. In fact, he wrote thousands of hymns but often chose “tavern tunes,” songs known by most as common bar-room songs, for the music of the hymns. He sought ways to connect the sacred message with the common person and found such in these well-known songs.

I urge our members to be supportive, encouraging and responsive to this new approach to worship. We are not going to abandon what historically made our congregation one of the strongest in the city. There will be traditional worship at 8:00 and 9:30 am. We will continue with everything that has made HPCUMC a great church. But we do have a long tradition of trying new approaches such as the development of our singles ministry back in the 1960’s. We began to offer a Christmas Eve service for families earlier than the 11:00 pm service when we learned young families could not make the later service. The opportunity before us to carry on this long tradition of trying new approaches may not be easy or simple. It never has been. But it is nothing new. As a bishop, I visited many churches and I found that the thriving churches were those that were willing to try something different to reach a new constituency.

It is important to add that nothing will be taken from us, but much will be added. I urge church members to be on the cutting edge as we traditionally have been and continue to expand what we have to offer the community. I know of no other church in the area that has a worship service just like the one being planned. There is great possibility before us. Part of the new reality is this: We were once among the top 3 churches in the West Ohio conference. This is no longer true. We must embrace change to carry our share of the challenge to reach the unchurched for Christ. Your support of this new ministry will encourage our church leadership and energize this opportunity to offer something new to our neighbors. I hope you will join me in doing so.