Doing Our Own Work in Learning and Sharing

We are starting a new sermon series on race, because we believe it is important for white Christians to learn and talk about race/racism. As we do this work, I encourage you to educate yourself by seeking out resources (books, podcasts, articles) by BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and People of Color). The resources below are a starting point. Moving forward, share what you’ve learned with other white people, push through the discomfort to engage in courageous conversations in your circles.


·  I’m Still Here: Black Dignity in a World Made for Whiteness by Austin Channing Brown

·  How to Be an Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi

·  When They Call You a Terrorist: A Black Lives Matter Memoir by Patrisse Khan-Cullors

·  Me and White Supremacy by Layla Saad

·  Tears We Cannot Stop: A Sermon to White America by Michael Eric      Dyson

·  So You Want to Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo

·  Pushout: The Criminalization of Black Girls in Schools by Monique W. Morris


·  All My Relations hosted by two Native women, Matika Wilbur and Adrienne Keene

·  Latinos Who Lunch discuss issues related to the intersectionality between queer, Latinx, and Spanglish voices hosted by FavyFav and Bavelito

·  Self Evident: Asian America’s Stories hosted by Cathy Erway tackles today’s tough questions about identity, cultural change, and nationhood.

·  The Stoop highlights Blackness by digging deeper into stories we don’t hear enough about by Leila Day and Hana Baba


·  COVID-19: Pre-existing Disparities Exposed presented by Church & Society of the UMC

·  A free 5 week series on Thursdays from May 21 to June 18 from 2:00-3:15pm

·  To learn more and sign up please click here.

Caring for Each Other During the Coronavirus

Caring for Each Other During the Coronavirus

What can I do to help?

Last Updated: 5/1

We suggest that you bookmark/save this page to come back to for updates regarding needs, volunteering, sign ups, etc. You do not need to be a member or attend HPCUMC in order to serve, donate, or help. We have an opportunity to work together in order to care for each other. Please share with others!

UPDATE: Since Governor DeWine has decided that school building will continue to be closed the rest of the school year, we will continue to serve lunches daily as children are learning from home. Our last day of serving lunches will be Thursday, May 21 which is also the last day of school for Cincinnati Public Schools. 

The church and the services we are providing are STILL considered ESSENTIAL under Gov. DeWine’s order going into effect at 11:59p on Monday, April 6. Therefore, people are STILL ABLE to serve, drop off donations, and get the resources and food during distribution times. We are keeping up with protocol and limiting the amount of people serving to maintain social distancing and have plenty of sanitizer and gloves available for people helping to use.

The church building will be open from 10:00a-6:00p daily to receive donations at the Welcome Center.

Take basic precautions. Model healthy behaviors.

These simple steps will help you and those around you. They’ll also reduce your feelings of powerlessness.

  • Practice good hand-washing techniques.Wash your hands with soap and water, for at least 20 seconds. If you can’t wash your hands, use hand sanitizer with 60-95% alcohol.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue, or your bent elbow, when you cough or sneeze.
  • Maintain at least six (6) feet between yourself and others.
  • Seek medical attention if you or a family member experience a fever, cough, or shortness of breath.


Distribute free meals EVERYDAY to children. There are TWO options for locations: Hyde Park Community UMC (1345 Grace Ave.) AND the State Ave. UMC (690 State Ave) 

We are providing ALL children 18 and under with a FREE lunch EACH DAY (including Saturday and Sunday). The meals we will be serving are shelf stable so do not need to be refrigerated.

  • Hyde Park Community UMC  (1345 Grace Ave.) will distribute food from 12:00p-1:00p at 1345 Grace Ave. every day (including weekends). Children need to be present to receive meals. 
  • State Ave UMC (690 State Ave.) will distribute food from 3:00p-5:00p every day (including weekends). Children need to be present to receive meals. 
  • We are following Gov. DeWine’s orders and all meals will be picked up and to be taken offsite (meals will be given out to CHIlDREN at HPCUMC and the Warehouse, but the kids need to take the meals home and can’t eat onsite). This option will allow the kids to be fed, but greatly reduce the risk associated with in person contact (think social distancing).
  • Other ways you can help from your home in this area is helping to get the word out about this resource on social media and your networks OR make homemade masks for those serving and bring them to the church or email Pastor Kate to schedule a pick up (
  • To distribute meals at HPCUMC (1345 Grace Ave.) with shifts being 11:45a-1:15a daily sign up to serve here
  • To distribute meals at State Ave UMC (690 State Ave.) with two shift options daily and helping to clean up the neighborhood on Mondays, Wednesday, and Saturdays sign up to serve here

Donate food to Madisonville Education and Assistance Center (MEAC)

MEAC has been working to meet the needs of the community since 1986 and HPCUMC has been a partner since it’s inception. In this time of crisis and uncertainty, MEAC wants our neighbors to feel secure in our ability to continue to meet the needs of the community, and to do so in a way that limits the risks to public health.

  • We are continuing our Project 5000 food drive to support MEAC’s food pantry. You can buy the pantry items yourself or donate money (approx. $25 to fill one bag to feed a family of 4) that will go directly to MEAC to purchase food.
  • Give online here – choose Project 5000 in the drop down menu.
  • The church will be open from 10:00a-6:00p daily to drop off your donation. The church’s address is 1345 Grace Ave. Please drop off your donation in the Welcome Center (signs will guide you from entrances off the parking lot)  and it will be delivered to MEAC. This method allows for social distancing and allows you to come when you are able.
  • Extra Project 5000 bags will be available if you don’t have a bag before you shop or if you plan to make another donation. Just fill the bag when you get here and feel free to take a bag if you want to make another donation.
  • Below is the shopping list that will feed a family of 4. We’ve gotten feedback that people are going to multiple stores to get what’s on the list (that isn’t needed). Right now, please use the list as a guide not a rule in filling the bag. It is better to bring in a bag with alternative non-perishable items than wait until you find exactly what’s on the list.

Donate food, cleaning supplies, toiletries, and other school/art supplies to Rothenberg Preparatory Academy for students and families

HPCUMC has a 9-year partnership with Rothenberg Preparatory Academy. Cincinnati Public Schools (CPS) is providing breakfast and lunch to children at various CPS locations – find a location closest to you and schedule of distribution here. We are accepting donations at the church and the donations will be distributed to families when they pick up food at Rothenberg. There is another option to give money directly to Collaborate and Care that will be used to purchase goods.

  • The church will be open from 10:00a-6:00p daily to drop off your donation. The church’s address is 1345 Grace Ave. Please drop off your donation in the Welcome Center (signs will guide you from entrances off the parking lot)  and it will be delivered to MEAC. This method allows for social distancing and allows you to come when you are able.
  • Please make your donation/bag with “Rothenberg”
  • Ideas for donation:
    • Hygiene/Toiletry Kits
    • Educational/Fun Activity Kits (stickers, coloring pages, books, games, etc.)
    • Power Packs/Bags of Food/Non-perishable items, canned goods, etc.
  • To give monetary donations please mail your check to: Cincinnati Public Schools; Attn: Collaborate & Care; P.O Box 5381; Cincinnati, OH 45201-5381

Schedule a Pick Up from New Life Furniture Bank and Donate Furniture, Dishes, Linens and Home Goods 

Many of you are currently using some of your time at home to organize and unload furniture, dishes, linens, homewares, etc. that you no longer need. Please call us if you would like to donate your furniture to people who are fleeing homelessness. Just give us a call at 513-313-0530, and we’ll pick it up (outside of course), and we’ll email you a receipt (all donations are tax-deductible).

Send Letters to Homebound Seniors

Mail letters/cards/pictures to isolated senior adults. Contact Pam Pilger at to obtain addresses.

Ideas/Resources for Children

  • Stay connected with other children: decrease social isolation for children by submitting pictures of them and we will publish them in our weekly HPC Kids Newsletter (contact Pam Pilger to get the Newsletter for your family They can be silly, happy, or sad. God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in time of trouble. We are not alone. Together, as the body of Christ, we can remind our children of this.
  • Children’s Sunday School Lessons: check out the HPC Kids Newsletter for brief, entertaining video lessons. The Preschool Theme is “Follow Jesus” and the Elementary Theme is “Forgiveness – It’s Up to You.” Contact Pam at if you are not on the HPC Kids mailing list.
  • Sharing Prayers of Joys and Concerns: post your children’s joys and concerns on our Facebook Hyde Park Community UMC Children and Family Ministry group page. Then share what other children have posted and pray about them together with your child. The Facebook group is a closed group. Please join to help keep connected and supported.

Donate blood 

There is always a need for blood donations, especially in a time of health crisis.

Denounce racism and xenophobia

Coronavirus has revived racial stereotypes, and harmed many. Remember – this outbreak is not confined to one race or ethnicity. There is never an excuse for racism. Speak out when you hear blame and shame being placed on a specific race or ethnic group.

Check on older family, friends, and neighbors

Share God’s kindness. And do it in a way that does not jeopardize their health. Many of the suggestions below are from Ohio Department of Health Director Amy Action, M.D., MPH.

  • Call, send a text message or video chat. Ask how they are doing. Tell them you’re praying for them. Share a joke or memory.
  • If you can’t call or text, talk through the door.
  • Leave a hand-made card or small “thinking of you” gift on their doorstep or mailbox.
  • Make sure they have plenty of food, water, and medical supplieson hand, or prepare a meal. Ask questions like “I’m running to the store – can I get you anything?” or “Are you hungry for anything in particular?” If store supplies allow it, stock them up for several days. Drop it off on their front door step.
  • Run other errands – pharmacies for medicines, other stores for essentials
  • If applicable, do basic yard work, take their trash or recycling to the curb or bin, or drop off their mail at their door.
  • Support their four-legged friends. Help stock up on essentials like food, treats, etc.
  • Think about what you would like if you were stuck in your home. Would you want books, games, other comfort measures?
  • Identify a backup caregiver for your older relative who can step in if you get sick.

Supporting local partners 

Hyde Park Community UMC is proud to partner with local organizations, agencies, and schools. Now more than ever we need to come together as a community to support each other. Below is a list of places that we are (and will continue to) support financially and many through service thanks to people’s generosity and giving:

Please contact Pastor Kate with any questions ( 

Super Serve Saturday – No Super Powers Necessary

There’s something new coming February 1st! We are experimenting with ways families and different generations can come together to serve in meaningful ways so Super Serve Saturday has formed! You are invited to come to the very first one next Saturday, February 1st, focused on helping to alleviate hunger in Cincinnati. The day will start at 9:00 am in the Welcome Center and we will be done before lunch! Coffee, pastries, and fruit will be provided while we explain each of the projects and deploy the different groups.

Can’t make it next Saturday? Super Serve Saturday will be held the first Saturday of each month through May on March 7, April 4, and May 2.

Be sure to check out the Super Serve Saturday article in News and Happenings for all the details regarding the 5 different teams that will be serving in a variety of ways next Saturday. There is something for each age and ability – no super powers necessary – just a willing, humble, and flexible spirit and a heart for all!

There is no need to sign up, just show up and feel free to invite along others! If you have any questions before the event please contact me (

Here are the 5 different teams you can choose from (more information in the other Super Serve Saturday article):

1.  Wesley Community Services

2.  New Life Furniture Bank

3.  The Center for Respite Care

4.  Shopping for Jesus

5.  Children 5 and under

See you next Saturday!

Pastor Kate

New Year, Next Step

In January of this year, I stepped into a new role at HPCUMC as the Pastor of Mission and Outreach. Over the last year, I have been energized at the opportunity to engage with and serve alongside multiple generations at Hyde Park as we put our faith into action locally, nationally, and globally.

As you step into this next year, I invite you to take the next step in faith if you are not already serving. There are many ways and opportunities to serve in meaningful ways that correspond to your gifts, talents, and passions. Whether you find yourself wanting to focus on relationships, on the front lines, or serve behind the scenes – there is a place for YOU! Serving is a great way to make a big church feel smaller by building relationships with people you serve alongside.

While the list of ways to support ministry goes on and on – here are some highlights of areas that need your support:

  Being a friendly visitor to a home bound member and visit 1-2 times a month

  Take communion to a home bound member – offered 3 times/year

  Be on the program committee to plan speakers, entertainment, and local trips for the 2020-2021 Senior Adult Ministry

  Share the Good News with youth at the Hamilton Juvenile Detention Center on Tuesday or Wednesday evenings – it is offered weekly and can serve monthly

  Prepare and serve a meal to our neighbors at Madisonville Education Center on the 4th Monday of every month

  Tutor a 5th grade student at Rothenberg in writing and reading weekly on Tuesday or Thursday (9:20-10:10a or 1:10-2:00p)

  Be part of the 25th house build for the Shalom Coalition starting in the Spring of 2020 – no experience required and building days are during the week and on Saturdays

If any of these opportunities spark your interest, I would love to have a conversation with you to share more details about how to get connected! Please reach out to me at or on Sunday mornings!

As you step into this new year, perhaps God is calling you to something new!

Pastor Kate

A Life Full of Care and Free From Worry

A Life Full of Care and Free From Worry

My brother and I are 15 months apart, practically Irish twins, and you couldn’t get more Irish with names like Katie and Patrick and my brother being born on St. Patrick’s Day. While we grew up in the same household and share the same parents, there are more ways that we are different than we are alike. While we share having curly hair, the same nose, and blue eyes -even standing next to each other people wouldn’t believe we were related. When it comes to disposition, we were on opposite ends of the spectrum as children. Being the older sibling, teachers having my brother the next year were often shocked to find out that we were related.

Growing up we both shared a love of climbing any and all things but mostly trees! While we both started out fearless in conquering the scaling of branches and seeing how high we could get, our reaction to getting down was much different. Sure, it was all fun and games when we were climbing and looking out into the world from new heights, but I found myself paralyzed with fear when it was time to descend. I believe that fear is the root of our worry and I couldn’t begin to count how many worries I had at the top of the tree. It would be so embarrassing to have to have another person, often my grandfather, come and help me down. When I got too high up, a ladder would have to be brought out with a lecture on how I shouldn’t climb trees or things that I wasn’t willing to climb down myself. My brother on the other hand, continued to be so fearless that he wouldn’t climb down either. Instead he would JUMP down! He also received lectures, although it usually happened at an Urgent Care.

When I think back on those events, I realize my brother and I illustrate the spectrum of fear. On one end is paralyzing worry and the other end is careless action or non-action. I don’t believe a person is or experiences either/or but lives a life of both/and. However, I believe our sweet spot is learning to lead a life of care which will bring purpose and focus. We are to live a life full of care and free from worry.


Pastor Kate Smith


Living Out Our Mission of Putting Faith into Action

Over the last few months, you might have noticed something new in the News & Happenings. As a way to inform and encourage engagement in missional opportunities, the Monthly Mission Spotlight was created. Since its launch, Interfaith Hospitality Network, the Romania Partnership, and Habitat for Humanity has been featured. Each week, new information is shared regarding that particular ministry for the month and also gives specific ways people can get involved. After Interfaith Hospitality Network was featured, 10 new people served in some way during our last host week in March!

The mission of our church is a commitment to share the love of Jesus to transform lives, Cincinnati, and the world. Our hope at Hyde Park Community is that each person can find a meaningful way to serve that connects people’s passions and gifts to needs of the community and world. My relationship with Jesus became real when I had my first invitation to serve alongside others. My faith continues to grow as I put my discipleship into action and I find that the life that is most changed is not the people I’m serving with, but it is my own.

If there is a stirring in you to go deeper in your discipleship through service, I would love to meet with you! The monthly mission spotlight scratches the surface of all the ways one can use their gifts. With the variety of ways to get involved and serve, I believe there is a great fit for each person.

Finally, thank you to all who are already serving and being the church! Your passion, energy, and commitment is amazing and I’m beyond thankful for your ministry to the church, community, and world. Let’s continue to bring the Kingdom of God closer!


Pastor Kate

Seeing Ourselves- Seeing Others

“What is an ‘Any-a-gram?’” I asked.

“It’s called the ‘ENNEAGRAM!’”  My friend retorted.

My first introduction to the Enneagram was in January 2017 at a conference. People from the conference encouraged me to start my Enneagram journey on the drive home by listening to The Liturgists (Science Mike who was here last February is one of the hosts) podcast on the topic. I imagine this advice came because it was safer listening to a podcast than reading a book while driving. It’s episode 37 in case you want to check it out for yourself.

The Enneagram is perhaps best defined by Enneagram author and expert Suzanne Stabile as, “nine ways of seeing and nine ways of processing our experiences in the world. Additionally, there are nine ways of answering some of life’s basic questions like, ‘Who am I?’ and ‘Why do I do the things I do?’”

Most of us have no idea that others don’t see as we see, nor do they process their experiences in the same way we do. Keeping this in mind is especially crucial in ALL of our relationships! The Enneagram is a tool that helps us understand people’s fears, motivations, desires, and relationship dynamics. It can be a key that unlocks sometimes mystifying behavior in others – and in ourselves, which can lead to more empathy and understanding.

You might remember an Enneagram workshop happening here a few years ago and perhaps benefitted from it yourself. There has been an influx of interest among young adults around this topic. As way to build relationships and engage with young adults in the area, we are offering an Enneagram Weekend to take place at Over-the-Rhine Community Church on February 22-23. Thanks to the Emerson and Jan Colaw Lecture/Leadership Endowment we are able to offer this as a free event.

I believe the weekend will be transformative for people’s relationship with God and others. I would love your help getting the word out to young adults! Please send them to to learn more information. If you would like to help support the weekend (and get more information about the Enneagram for yourself) please check the One-and-Done section to get involved.


Pastor Kate


The Beat Goes On

As we come to a finale of this “long and winding road” of Advent this Sunday, some of you might be thinking, “Don’t stop the music!” If that is your sentiment, know that I stand in solidarity with you – as music is a passion of mine. While I know God can’t give all of the gifts to people – I wish I would have received the gift of music (either singing or playing – I’m not picky) instead of only the gift of appreciating music.

For some people, though, music is something that just “sounds nice, it’s good background noise.” For me, it is so much more! People of the Bible used music as a tool to pray and as an outlet to express the whole spectrum of human emotion. This creative expression helps us emotionally and spiritually, offers us direction, and has the ability to articulate thoughts and feelings all while showing us that we aren’t alone.

This series was based on the premise that God is in all things and we have the ability to find sacred in the ordinary and everyday as we theologically reflect on how songs not traditionally found in “Christian music” can point us to God. This Advent, the Beatles songs acted as a soundtrack for the season leading up to Christmas as we were invited to explore creative ways to connect with God and others.

For those who want the beat to go on and continue to explore faith through music – never fear! The teaching theme for *Summer Impact is “Rock of Ages” as a way to enjoy music, express faith, and find community. There is even a community made playlist of 176 songs that you can access through Spotify: or search “Rock of Ages: Summer Impact 2019.” These songs were submitted to the playlist because people have found divine meaning, hope, and love. Are there unexpected songs that have connected you to God?

May you experience God in unexpected places and ways this Christmas season and into 2019 as you open your eyes (and maybe your ears) to what God is trying to show you.


Pastor Kate

Summer Impact –


Johns Island Mission Trip

“The passing over the coming back is the greatest spiritual adventure of our time.” John S. Dunne

A small, but mighty team left their Homeland to pass over to the wonderland of Johns Island, South Carolina in the middle of June. They were commissioned to serve alongside Rural Mission as they continued Kingdom work in the Sea Islands. While many people visit this area for vacation, there is a rich history with a diverse group of people. With the boom in the economy due to tourism, many are unable to keep up with the rise of prices of living costs and find themselves in need of assistance. Rural Mission has been active in the community since the 1960’s providing support and relief to their island neighbors.

The team was able to not only serve in the community, but support Rural Mission as well with a variety of work projects. One group helped with laying flooring and finishing up drywall for dorms on the grounds in order for more people to visit Rural Mission and serve. Other projects included installing a handrail outside a home so the neighbor can go up and down the stairs himself rather than being carried; building benches, and doing finishing touches on a roof for homeowners of the Johns Island community.

Work was only part of the trip. The team also spent plenty of time getting to know each other through team building activities and games. This very shy group transformed by the end of the week and laughter and conversation could be heard regularly. The teaching focus for the week was on Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount as a way to deepen their relationship and understanding of God. The group reflected on the Kingdom of God in their work, study, and play in the Wonderland.

The team came back to their Newfoundland in Cincinnati ready to continue with the momentum they had in building their relationship with God, each other, and serving in their community.


Pastor Kate

Confirmation Sunday

Hyde Park Community is steeped in tradition. One of the most celebrated traditions in the life of the church is Confirmation Sunday. Not only is it a celebration for the youth and their families, it is a joyous occasion for the church family as well. We have the opportunity to welcome new members in the life of the church and affirm their profession of faith in Jesus for themselves.

The word “confirmation” literally means “to make firm.” Confirmation seeks to make firm that which has gone before. It is closely linked to, and dependent on, what has taken place in the youth’s life already, including God’s prevenient grace, the sacrament of baptism, and the Christian nurture of the family with the support of the faith community. It is also an anticipatory occasion of what is to come-acting as an important marker (not graduation) along their spiritual journeys as the Holy Spirit strengthens the youth in his or her lifelong discipleship of Jesus.

Our journey in the Christian faith is not intended to be a solo venture and the youth did not travel this part of the journey alone. Faithful leaders walked alongside them this year to encourage and challenge each student. Please join me in thanking co-leader Chuck Brandt and small group leaders Mackenzie Fahey, Gretchen and Paul Lisi, Al Painter, and Abby Warren.

Confirmation Sunday is not just for the youth and their families! Church family, this Sunday we have the privilege to honor and encourage the young people’s commitment to live as faithful disciples of Jesus Christ and to renew our commitment to do the same!

Congratulations to the Confirmation Class of 2018!

Veronica Grace Bigger

Cara Elizabeth Coy

Samantha Ellen Ellis

Sam Gneuhs

Ryan Meador

Aimee Joy Payling

Audrey Elizabeth Potter

Trevor Benjamin Stith

Bennett Taylor Turan

Noah John Vanags

Amanda M. Yeung

Emily M. Yeung