I need to share with you just a few of the conversations that drifted my way during the past week — and the gratitude it made me feel.
“We’re so excited to be at FUMC!” said a family who recently joined our church. “Our kids love Mister Mark. Children’s programming was our first priority in looking at churches, and there’s nothing anywhere in town that comes close to what he’s doing. But honestly, we loved all of the programs at the church!”
And their excitement about becoming a part of our FUMCFW faith community — and all of the great things happening here — made me a little excited too!
At this week’s staff meeting, I listened as Rev. Chuck Graff described the fellowship between the people who enjoyed our Outdoor Retreat Ministries’ recent trip to Tyler State Park and Azalea Trail. From a birthday celebration, to offering support to those experiencing health issues and loss, to simply basking in the spectacular beauty of this time of year in East Texas, this group clearly experienced something very special because of this dynamic ministry. Then Andrew Mochrie, Director of Youth Ministries, told us he will be spending this coming weekend with 39 Confirmands at Glen Rose, following on the heels of last weekend’s boys’ campout and hike with Martin Leathers in Purtis Creek State Park. (It is rumored that one young camper even learned how to make his own sandwich.)
Sometimes I forget all of the things this church has to offer, and I take for granted how much work it takes to make these wonderful experiences happen. Through the generosity of our church family and amazing staff, together we empower the people of this church to go out and be God’s people in the world. From the incredible music in the Sanctuary or in Wesley Hall, to the youth traveling each summer to Camp Barnabas to help provide life-changing Christian camping experiences to children with special needs and to their siblings — from ministry to ministry within and beyond the walls of this beautiful church, getting to see our church through new members’ eyes always fills me with deep gratitude for the generosity of all who make these things possible. Thank you, everyone, from the bottom of my heart!
Director of Welcoming Ministries