I appreciate the educators in our church, I have learned so much by taking a class or participating in a small group study. I’m thankful for the leaders who dedicate their time and effort towards education.
I am currently taking a class on United Methodism 101 which has been a very helpful class for me, especially since I was raised as a Catholic and joined the Methodist church about seven years ago.
I now have a new awareness and appreciation of John Wesley. I appreciate how a key part of his ministry was to travel and preach outdoors to reach the common person; many of the early Methodist clergy would be circuit riders who were assigned to travel around specific geographic territories to minister to settlers and organize congregations. This is in line with Jesus’ message; Jesus did not stay in a temple. Jesus took his message to the people – and not just with other Jews, but with Gentiles and Samaritans as well. Jesus was there for everyone.
This reminds me of some of the recent feedback we have had from the HCI recommendations. We’re encouraged to get out of the building to reach the “nones”. We’re encouraged to free up our Pastor’s time to be out in the community. But this is not a new idea; this is something our church has done before and is now being reminded that it has worked well in the past. This was done thirty years ago when Pastor Wayne Walther and the charter members started Glendale; and this was done over 200 years ago when John Wesley and the early Methodists traveled around America. I have found studying our church’s history has opened up my perspective of who we are as a church, and I’m excited to be part of the next stage.
Matthew 5:14-16 (NRSV) You are the light of the world. A city built on a hill cannot be hid. No one after lighting a lamp puts it under the bushel basket, but on the lampstand, and it gives light to all in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father in heaven.