December 12, 2018
The following are some “quick hit” summaries of how the local churches across the Central Texas Conference have been trying new ways to reach new people in response to our WIG mission to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world. If you have a quick tale to tell of how you, your church, your small group and/or your family and friends are actively pursuing the conference’s WIG goals, send it in (along with any photos or videos you wish to include) to firstname.lastname@example.org.
“I Need More Water”
It takes something pretty unusual for Dr. Leah Hidde-Gregory, Central District DS, to be surprised by a request from one of the clergy or churches in her district. However, when Rev. Martin Orozco, pastor of Iglesia Jeme
(the Hispanic congregation at FUMC Corsicana
), told her that he needed “more water” for his congregation, she was stopped in her tracks.
“That was a new one,” admitted Leah. “But after he explained, I was thrilled by the request.”
It seems that Martin’s need for more water had nothing to do with plumbing or landscaping needs and everything to do with making disciples of Jesus and growing the church. You see, in the past few months, Iglesia Jeme has welcomed several into the church, with several having professed their faith in Christ for the first time and who were needing to be baptized. However, sprinkling wouldn’t do for these new Christians as they all wanted to be immersed.
“I need more water to baptize them,” Pastor Martin told his smiling DS.
Before the sun set after learning of Rev. Orozco’s request, the good souls at FUMC Corsicana had made arrangements for a horse trough to be brought in for use as a baptismal pool – and perhaps become part of their garden area for future use.
Iglesia Jeme expanded to a second worship service earlier this fall, and now average 174 people in worship between the two services.
The Porch and the Neighborhood Table
Two East District congregation in close proximity to each other are reaching out to their surrounding community in new and innovative ways.
is inviting its congregation to connect with the needs of its community through a monthly event dubbed the “Neighborhood Table
.” One of the most recent connections was with House Ministries, a community ministry aiding single pregnant women who need support. FUMC Colleyville bolstered House Ministries efforts with new volunteers, financial support, including a thousand-dollar vocational scholarship for one of the residents, and hundreds of packages of diapers.
While Colleyville is setting the table in its community, Grapevine FUMC is welcoming people to The Porch.
is an innovative worship experience that blends contemporary worship with a casual atmosphere and a class-style, conversational message. If you’d like to hear what is being discussed each week, visit firstmethodistgrapevine.org/porch
Why are the weekly conversations recorded? Well, The Porch was first envisioned as a podcast, but has quickly become a popular destination for both the churched and unchurched in the Grapevine community and is credited with being a major driver in the 4 percent increase in FUMC Grapevine’s average weekly worship attendance.
Pie Fixes Everything
While some might disagree with the sentiment held by many dessert fans that “Pie Fixes Everything,” the delicious pastry is proving to be an enticing invitation for folks in Coleman, Texas to come together and talk about their walk with Jesus, the church and other issues of faith.
Each week, Rev. Paul Judd, pastor of FUMC Coleman
lets folks know what time he’ll be at his favorite peddler of pie and what is the pie of the day. Each week, both members of the church and non-members alike join him to talk about issues of faith.
A new faith community call “Free Space” recently baptized six persons and had three professions of faith
. Free Space is an extension of Lighthouse Fellowship
in partnership with the owner of a local bingo hall. Services are held in the hall each week.
One of the six who were baptized is the husband of the owner of the bingo hall. She had been earnestly praying that her husband would accept Christ.
“Her prayers helped create a path for the prayer group and this new faith community,” exclaimed Rev. Travis Franklin, North District Superintendent. “What a difference the prayers of a devout follower of Christ can make as the church seeks to risk its mission to those who long for it most!!”
To read more about the baptisms, visit lfwired.org/baptisms-at-free-space-faith-community