CEO of Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen: Driven to Serve

Cheryl A. Bachelder, CEO of Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen, posts a Bible verse on her calendar each day:

“Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility regard others as better than yourselves.”

Bachelder has turned her company around with a focus on serving others.  Reflecting on the words on servanthood that Paul wrote to the people of Philippi, she writes:   

“I really like the choice of words around counting others more significant than ourselves.  I believe we’re all born with an inner 2-year old.  And we’d really still like to be laying on the floor, kicking and screaming because we didn’t get the candy bar we wanted.

I always say servant leadership is an aspiration, because you can really never claim you’ve arrived. Because as soon as you do, someone will find you—and in a trap of self-interest. It’s something you’re always working toward.”

Jesus invites all of us to reach beyond ourselves and step out of our cozy world of self-interest to serve others.  There are two great opportunities for you to answer the call of Christ here in our congregation:

Ministry Fair, September 30th: Stop by the Welcome Center to see all the ways that you can serve Christ.  On Sunday, October 7, our service commitments will be gathered together and dedicated to God in worship

Servant Leadership Board Applications. Committed members of Hyde Park Community United Methodist are invited to apply to serve on the Servant Leadership Board.  Applications are available at the Welcome Center; the application deadline is October 15.  The term of service is January 2019 – December 2021.

Serving others not only makes God smile, but lights up God’s world!   Thank you for all the ways you share the light of Christ in our church, community, and around the world.

Peace,

Pastor Cathy

Jesus and Napoleon

They are certainly both two famous men. Their impact on humanity was significant. That is where their similarities stop.

Napoleon once wrote:

“I know men and I tell you that Jesus Christ is no mere man.  Between Him and every other person in the world there is no possible term of comparison.  Alexander, Caesar, Charlemagne, and I have founded empires. But on what did we rest the creation of our genius?  Upon force.  Jesus Christ founded His empire upon love; and at this hour millions of men would die for Him” 

As we begin to study Jesus in depth during the month of September I invite you to consider the question that Jesus once asked Peter, “But who do you say that I am?”  There are many names of Jesus in the Bible. Take a moment in the next few weeks and jot down the names of Jesus, the Christ that are the most meaningful for you. Here are some of my favorites:  Resurrection and the Life, Prince of Peace, Wonderful Counselor, Keeper of my Soul, Emmanuel, Great Shepherd of the Sheep, and the True Vine.

May God bless you this September with the joy of Jesus, the one who came that we might life and life abundant!

Peace,

Pastor Cathy

Mark Your Calendars: Church Conference( September 16th 4:30 PM)

The Servant Leadership Board, with the permission of the District Board of Church Location and Building, has set a Church Conference for September 16, 4:30p.m.  The agenda for the Church Conference will be to:

Vote to support the recommendation of the Building Committee and the Servant Leadership Board and move forward with a capital campaign to raise funds to support implementing Phase One of the Master Plan.

Authorize the formation of a Capital Campaign Committee that will organize and conduct a capital campaign to raise the funds necessary to complete Phase One of the Master Plan.

At a Church Conference every member of Hyde Park Community United Methodist church has voice and vote. 

Important Dates to Note:

August 26, 12:15 p.m. Final Town Hall Meeting. Come and hear the presentation of Phase 1 of the Master Plan, including conceptual drawings and a model from architects,  so that you can be an educated voter.

September 16, 4:30 p.m. Church Conference at Hyde Park Community United Methodist.

Spring 2019 (If approved in September 2018):  Vote at a second Church Conference on the decision to build, following the completion of the capital campaign.

Please pray for God to guide our path as we seek to be faithful witnesses for Christ.

Pastors Cathy and Doug Johns

What Would Your Totem Pole Say?

The first week of August, Pastor Doug and I enjoyed a continuing education class at the University of British Columbia.  While we were on the campus we visited the Museum of Anthropology.  Beautiful totem poles were part of the museum that is devoted to honoring the first nations of the Pacific Northwest.

Totem poles are normally made of red cedar which are abundant in supply in the Pacific Northwest.  They would be placed visibly within a community.  Totem poles do not necessarily “speak,” telling a story, but they do serve to document the history and stories that are familiar to people from the family or members of the clan.

Symbolic forms, human, animal, or supernatural, adorn the totem poles. They show kinship, functioning as a type of family crest.

The thunderbird for example, would be a part of the Kwakwakawakw families of northern Vancouver, members of the Thunderbird Clan.  Killer whales, frogs, eagles, and beavers are common. Totem poles also honor specific events or significant individuals.

Sometimes we forget that our lives “tell a story.”  A totem pole communicates to others what is important.  As Christians who follow Jesus the Christ, we have the opportunity to be bearers of the gospel story. May our words and actions reflect the heart of Christ, the Lord of love who came to transform the world with life-giving love.

Please welcome Rev. Don Dixon, former pastor at Hyde Park Community United Methodist, as he preaches the message of God’s love and grace.

Peace,

Pastor Cathy Johns

Update on Town Hall Meetings/ Master Plan

Nearly 150 people have attended Town Hall meetings in June and July to hear about the exciting report of the Building Committee. The group, chaired by Paul Lisi, has worked for nearly two years to formulate Phase 1 of the Master Plan. We are thankful for their creative vision which respects the integrity of our historical building while opening fresh spaces to welcome all in Christ’s name. The Master Plan is the long-range view that aligns our physical space so that we can fulfill our mission:  to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.

The Ohio River Valley District has enthusiastically endorsed this plan and given Hyde Park Community United Methodist permission to hold a Church Conference in September.  Each member has voice and vote.   

Next steps for moving forward:

Continue to pray for God to guide us as we seek to be faithful servants of Christ

August 26, 12:15 p.m. Final Town Hall Meeting prior to Church Conference.  All are welcome to come to the Little Theater to hear this exciting presentation.

September 16 Church Conference to vote on moving forward with a capital campaign for Phase 1 of the Master Plan.

First Quarter 2019  Capital Campaign begins (pending affirmation on September 16, 2018)

May God continue to fill us with vision, courage, and great joy as we seek to continue to faithfully serve our community with excellence, welcoming all in Christ’s name.

Peace,

Pastor Cathy Johns

Do You Have Joy Like A Fountain?

One of my favorite songs when I was a child was “Peace like a River.”  It was fun to sing the verses with the motions…”.I’ve got’:

Peace like a river (waves)

Joy like a Fountain (hands up like a fountain)

Love like an Ocean (arms make a big circle)

I once heard a speaker describe the first three fruits of the Spirit – love, joy, and peace – as the “big three.”  If you possess them, the speaker shared you can make it through anything.

When you meet someone who possesses true joy, you discover a powerful truth:  Joy allows us to rise above our circumstances.

There is a simple reason for this:  Joy that comes from God is constant and does not depend on what happens in our daily lives.  Someone put it well who said:

Joy is not the absence of suffering but the presence of God.

May God richly bless you today as you hold the hand of God, a God whose love for you will never end!

Peace,

Pastor Cathy

The “Don’t Pee on my Church” Sign

Rev. Lou Seipel, once served Board Street United Methodist, an inner-city church in Columbus, Ohio.  They serve 25,000 meals to people without housing, offer a Freedom School to at-risk children, and provide legal assistance and ministry to single women struggling with mental health and recovery issues.

Pastor Lou shared that in a shielded corner of the parking lot, people would sometimes relieve themselves, using the church parking lot as a bathroom.  On a hot day in August she stepped across “the stream” and came inside to a Trustees meeting.  She told the Trustees, “I wish I had a sign that said, “Don’t Pee on my Church!”

One of the Trustees took her seriously and posted a sign on the building:

“Don’t Pee on my Church” including her name, “Pastor Lou.”

She was mortified.  She saw her own sin before her in print, realizing that her mouth had the power to make a sacred space unwelcoming through her words.  She realized that if the poor had a bathroom, they would have used it.  She told the Trustees to take down the sign immediately.

Hospitality to all of God’s children is what makes my heart sing!  It means taking inventory of how we “do Church,” always looking for more ways to eliminate barriers and embrace all as sisters and brothers in Christian love.

May God’s Spirit move among us as we strive to welcome all in the name of Christ.

Peace,

Pastor Cathy

Innies or Outies?

Your body has one: an “inny” or an “outty.”   It is easy to tell.  When you look at your waistline your belly button either goes in or it pops out.

Churches are the same way:  they either face in or they face out.  Remember the rhyme and what you did with your hands: “Here is the church and here is the steeple…open the doors and see all the people?”

This week the program staff of our congregation studied a church that boldly states:  We strive to be a relentlessly outwardly focused church to reach people for Jesus Christ. Through wonderful ministries of hospitality, discipleship, and mission, Church of the Resurrection, a new United Methodist Church plant in 1990, has grown to 20,000 people.

What’s the secret sauce?  They align their resources:  people, their building, programs, ministries, and finances to accomplish their mission: to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.

This week you are invited to the first of two Town Hall Meetings offered in the next several weeks.  You will hear about the exciting plan for our building, the result of several years of work from many church leaders at Hyde Park Community United Methodist.  You will hear how our building can be restored, renovated, and also open up new, fresh space to welcome new people into our faith community.

You are invited on Wednesday evening, May 23, at 7:00 pm or Thursday, May 24 at 10:30 am for an exciting presentation. These town hall meetings will be offered through June. In late summer or early fall, church members will have the opportunity to officially vote to move forward with a capital campaign.

This is a congregation that is grounded in faith and growing to serve; I am excited to be a part of it!  I hope you will come to a Town Hall Meeting soon to hear about where God may be leading us!

Peace,

Pastor Cathy

You are Invited: An Update On Phase 1 of the Master Plan

In 2013, the Armstrong Group recommended multiple initiatives for our congregation to fulfill our mission to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.  To move forward with excellence we need to:

  • Maximize our Facilities for Ministry
  • Develop Multi-Site Ministries
  • Equip Leaders for ministries in fulfilling our mission
  • Connect people to care, grow and serve

In 2015, Hyde Park Community United Methodist Church contracted with MSA Architects to develop a Master Plan, a long-range (15-20 year) projection of our needs for our facility.  The congregation expressed its priorities for security for children, flexible space, and additional space for ministries to children and families.  In 2016, after approving this report, the Servant Leadership Board commissioned a Building Committee to phase the plan, considering the order of priorities carefully.   In March 2018, the Servant Leadership Board received the report of the Building Committee and their recommendation to proceed with Phase 1 of the Master Plan.

Communicating this exciting vision will take place soon at Town Hall Meetings.  Members of our congregation and church family are invited to come to see and hear about this proposal.   The purpose of the Town Hall meetings is to educate our congregation prior to voting at a Church Conference in late August or early September.  Members will be voting on authorizing the church to hold a Capital Campaign, embracing the vision of Phase 1 of the Master Plan.

Mark your calendars and plan to join us:

May 23, 7:00 p.m.

June 3, 7:00 p.m.

June 13, 7 p.m.

June 17, 12:15 p.m.

June 27, 12:15 p.m.

Joy in our Risen Lord,

Pastor Cathy

Why Holy Week Takes my Breath Away

Holy Week begins with a parade, filled with excitement and joy…lots of energy…children laughing and playing in the streets as people shout “Hosanna” (“Pray, save us) to Jesus as he humbly rides a donkey.

You can feel tension mounting as conflict arises among the Pharisees and scribes about what to do about Jesus, the One whom the crowd adores. Jesus’s disciples begin to fall away although some remain close.

By Thursday, Jesus, the humble servant, washes their feet and takes symbols from the Passover and explains the new covenant, his body and blood, and invites them to take, eat, and remember.

Thursday evening, Jesus prays in the Garden of Gethsemane, another moment of awe. He asks for the cup of suffering to be removed, but surrenders completely, the King who chooses to give up his life for his people. His arrest and imprisonment lead us to the horror of Friday.

After 39 brutal lashes, Jesus carries his cross through the streets of Jerusalem.  As his hands and feet are nailed to the Cross, I lose my breath again, hearing his words of love:  “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.”

With his death, we believe that the story is over;  the stone is rolled to seal the tomb.  My breath will be taken away again with the dawn of Easter morning when we hear the words again: “Christ is risen!  He is risen, indeed!”

This Holy Week in worship we will walk all the way to Gethsemane, the Cross, and to the Empty Tomb.  Open yourself to the power of Christ this week; God wants to move you deeply and take your breath away!

Peace,

Pastor Cathy