Ministry Is A Team Sport

Paul in First Corinthians talks about the body of Christ, “For just as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of the body, though many, are one body, so it is with Christ. . . . Now you are the body of Christ and individually members of it.”     (1 Corinthians 12:12, 27) Using a sports metaphor, ministry is a team sport, individuals coming together to use their gifts in coordination with the giftedness of others for the greater good.

As is the case with any team sport it is important to have the right people in the right place to accomplish great things for the kingdom of God.  With this in mind I take this opportunity to share exciting news with regard to our new Youth Director.

Over the past five months the Personnel Team of the Servant Leadership Board has been working with our Youth Leaders and Youth to fill the Youth Director position (effective January 1, 2019, Rev. Kate Smith transitioned from Youth Ministry to Mission and Outreach, succeeding Sarah Putman).  After reviewing over 30 resumes and a number of interviews, the right candidate never materialized.  Our priority was not to rush the process, settling for an “ok” youth director.  Strength in our youth ministry is what we sought and we were willing to stand on God’s promise in Isaiah, “Those who wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength.” (Isaiah 40:31)

I am pleased to announce that Dana Calhoun has agreed to re-align her responsibilities on staff to include youth ministry.  Dana has a passion for youth ministry and possesses the right gifts to serve and walk alongside our youth and their families with excellence.  Dana is the right person for the position on the team!  As the Director of Family Ministry at HPCUMC Dana’s focus will be Youth Ministry.

Over the coming weeks the Personnel Team will review the needs of our Children’s Ministry and seek the right candidate to join Pam Pilger on the Children’s Ministry Team.  In the meantime, an interim plan will be in place to make sure Children’s ministry is offered with excellence.  Your prayers are welcomed as Dana makes this transition, and for God’s leading, as the right person steps in to lead our children and their families.

It is a privilege to serve in ministry with you at HPCUMC.  Together we are the body of Christ to the world, offering God’s love to all God calls God’s beloved!  See you in Church!

Through Christ,

Pastor Doug

The Surprise Inside

My childhood friends and I would hunt for geodes and buckeyes. We would ride our bikes in the neighborhood back to the woods. There were would find all kinds of treasures, but our favorites were buckeyes.
On the outside they are just round, green balls. When you crack them open you discover a beautiful, shiny brown treasure. We would make necklaces out of them and wore them proudly. My friends and their Dad brought home another treasure: geodes. On the outside, they look like boring rocks. When you crack them open with a hammer, you discover beautiful sparkling colors: usually blue, purple, or white.
On Easter morning Mary Magdalene went to the tomb with spices. She expected to tuck the spices into the folds of his burial clothes. When she arrived she discover a surprise inside: the tomb was empty. In Matthew’s gospel we read that she saw an angel in white sitting on top the stone. The angel said, “Do not be afraid; I know you are looking for Jesus who was crucified. He is not here; for he has been raised, as he said. Come, see the place where he lay. Then go quickly and tell his disciples, ‘He has been raised from the dead.’”
This Easter do not miss the surprise inside……Allow yourself to walk inside the tomb to discover the treasure:
The tomb is empty. He is not here; He is Risen. Alleluia, Alleluia!

Joy in our Risen Lord,

Pastor Cathy

Together We Make A Difference!

Together We Make a Difference!

As the flowers bloom and the trees bud, all of creation is singing resurrection praises!

Thank you for your support and generosity of the ministries of Hyde Park Community/Over The Rhine Community United Methodist Church!   Because you gave:

•  On Friday, April 12, HPCUMC opened the doors of the Church, offering our community God’s love and grace through song, as our Praise Band performed a concert of love and acceptance.

•  On Saturday, April 13, HPCUMC, children and their families enjoyed our annual Easter Egg Hunt, led by our Children and Family Ministry.

•  In partnership with the University of Cincinnati’s Audiology Department, we have provided hearing aides for the community of Red Bird Mission. There is a waiting list of 3+ years for hearing aides. 

•  The Lenten Retreat offered participants a time of reflection and renewal.

•  The Pre-School Chapel engages over 190 children and adults with the love and grace of Jesus twice a month.

•  The weekly Young Adult gatherings average 11 young adults in study and fellowship. 

•  The Mission and Outreach Team provide opportunities to mentor/tutor children at Rothenberg and Wesley Chapel Mission Center.

•  Eight members of HPCUMC represented the church as part of the mission team to Cluj, Romania.

•  The Young Adult Enneagram Retreat inspired 22 young adults.

In these ways, and many more, your generous giving is a way in which you have partnered with God to bring God’s kingdom on earth, as it is in heaven.  Thank you!

May God’s blessings abound as you continue to support the ministry and mission of Hyde Park Community through your extravagant generosity!  

Through Christ,

Pastor Doug

Unlikely Treasure: The Blue Bowl

Once a friend of my mother noticed an old metal blue bowl that I had on a top shelf.  She liked it so much that she told my mother she would like to purchase it from me.  She thought it was very valuable.  Before that day, I never gave that blue bowl a second thought.  Somehow, after someone thought it was valuable, I looked at it differently.  I still have the bowl.

Two parables of Jesus will be explored this Sunday and invite us to think about what is really important in our lives.  It is so easy to put ourselves in “auto-pilot” zone, going from one thing to the next, simply completely our “to do lists” for the day. Jesus invites us to think about what we are willing to pursue –  what things in our life have us go “all in.”  These are things that we are willing to make sacrifices for, things that are the highest priorities in our lives.

There are times in our lives when we discover what really matters.  Once there may have been fog or confusion, but now crystal clear clarity has come.  When I look at the ministry of Jesus, one thing stands out.  He did not do anything halfway.  Jesus was always “all in.”  He never partially healed someone.  He never partially challenged someone.  His mission was clear:  bringing the kingdom of heaven to earth.   His life, ministry, sacrifice, and His death and resurrection usher in a new day….. He points us to the treasure that was worth dying for:  Love.

May God richly bless you this week as you seek what is important.  May God give us strength to follow in the footsteps of Christ:  Loving God.  Loving Neighbor.   

Peace,

Pastor CathyU