Archive for the ‘Pastor’s Ponderings’ Category

I Love You Buddy – by Katie Dawson

February 4, 2020

This devotional is from the back of our weekly church bulletin.

In his NOOMA video series, Rob Bell helps people to think about faith in new ways. In the episode “Rain,” he goes on a hike around a lake with his little boy in a carrier on his back. They are enjoying the sun and the beautiful weather, when clouds start to build. A single drop of rain falls, then another, and before long, they are caught in a downpour.

At firs, the little guy is all right, but soon there is thunder, lightning, and intense wind, and he gets scared. So Rob takes him out to the backpack, holds him close, and for the rest of the journey around the lake, whispers in his ear, “I love you buddy..we’re going to make it..Dad knows the way home.”

God speaks through the prophet Hosea and offers us those same words of love, compassion, and comfort. We are precious children in God’s eyes. When we don’t know how to walk, God lifts us up. When we are broken, God heals us. When, like infants, we cry out for life, God bends down to us, holding us close and providing for abundant life.

In the United Methodist tradition, we talk about prevenient grace as the grace that goes before us. It is God’s love poured out into our lives before we even know who God is. Whether or not we are ready to accept it, whether we even understand, God’s gentle Spirit is guiding us along the way, leading us with cords of love.

Too often, we forget that sustaining love and attempt to make our own way. If we put ourselves in the place of that little child whose father carried him through the storm, we see nothing around us but the wind and rain and forget we are in the arms of a loving parent. No matter how far away our thoughts turn from the Lord, Hosea reminds us God refuses to give up on us and is carrying us home.

I am held safe in the arms of God.

Chappel Temple – Lead Pastor – Christ UMC Sugarland, Texas

January 18, 2020

Chappel Temple wrote this for the Wesleyan Covenant Association. Here is the link to WCA if you are interested in reading more.

A Protocol for Peace

He’s not exactly a theologian, but we could perhaps call him a prophet of sorts. For six years before the United Methodist Church was even formed, Neil Sedaka got it right in his signature song of 1962: “Breaking Up is Hard to Do.” And that is so not only because there are numerous challenges as to how to divide the property and navigate all the relationships, but more so because if the marriage – or the church – was ever any good at all, there should indeed be deep grief when a separation becomes necessary.

Unfortunately, such is where we are as United Methodists. For it is now rather inescapably obvious that even if we might still have warm feelings for one another, we cannot all live in the same house any longer. I had hoped we would not come to this point. Forty-five years ago, I joined the Texas Annual Conference as a pastor and for thirty of those years I have had the chance to serve as a member of the Texas Annual Conference delegation to jurisdictional and then General Conferences.

But the entirety of my ministry as an ordained pastor has also been framed by the underlying tension of divergent views within the UM Church on not just human sexuality but also the authority of scripture, the nature of revelation, the role of missions, the application of social justice, and even the identity and divinity of Christ. And in the whole of it what we have discovered as a church is that for all of its merits, there are also limitations to the grand idea of pluralism.

To be sure, the famed dictum of “unity in essentials, liberty in non-essentials, and charity in all things,” is a wonderful goal, though John Wesley was hardly the first person to espouse it. You can find the quote at least a century before him, in fact, in the writings of a Catholic Archbishop who ended up attacking both the papacy and the English church before eventually being declared a relapsed heretic unable to be in unity with anybody. As wonderfully aspirational as the motto might sound, thus, it simply does not work when people cannot agree on what the “essentials” actually might be.

All of which is why I have reluctantly come to the conclusion that fifty-two years after its founding, the UM Church must likewise now be reformulated. And though there is no perfect plan, the recently announced “Protocol of Reconciliation and Grace through Separation” would seem to be the best proposal that will come before the General Conference in May. For the protocol will allow for those of varying theological and social understandings to follow their conscience without the continual acrimony and ideological struggle that has marked our denomination for decades.

Traditionalists, for instance, will be able to retain what have been the historic beliefs and practices of Methodism, though in a new wineskin that will also allow for a more local and lay-centered polity. Progressives, with the addition of a regional conference for the United States, will be empowered to pursue their vision of a church with a broader understanding of sexual ethics, identity formation, and ever-emerging revelation of God and God’s Word. Centrists will be free to embrace their pragmatic approach to ministry. And those in the central conferences outside of the United States will have liberty to decide which expression of Methodism best matches their own understanding, discerning whether simply retaining the current name and logo is important enough to remain organically affiliated with those espousing practices with which they may not agree.

Again, the protocol is not perfect. Some on the progressive side may question why conservatives should receive twenty-five million dollars, forgetting that Methodists of many opinions contributed those funds in the first place over a rather long period of time. And others on the conservative side may think that the amount is not in any way commensurate with what traditional church members have poured into our collective life for decades.

Likewise, many traditionalists may wonder why they should be the ones to give up the denominational name and apparatus when they have, in fact, prevailed in every General Conference vote since 1972 and it is those within the progressive caucus who have not only defied our common Discipline but brought us to this brink of separation in the first place. Some have even said that it feels like we are being paid off just to go away.

But in the end, the more significant result of adopting this protocol will be that churches, or even annual conferences, of any persuasion will be able to follow their conscience out of the UM Church should they feel the need to do so without the penalty of loss of any of their local properties and resources. And that is a provision whose value cannot be overstated. For relaxing the Trust Clause is like loosening someone’s grip around your neck and being free once more to not only breathe but to go where you may feel God is leading you.

In that regard, it will be critical for clergy, congregations, and conferences to clearly understand just exactly what the outlines of the emerging realities may be. In order to continue to support the understandings which the world-wide United Methodist Church has prayerfully and consistently embraced over its entire history it will probably be necessary to leave not Methodism but The United Methodist Church. For without doing so, all of us will remain stuck in an endless “Groundhog Day” of debate, dissension, disobedience, and disarray. The General Conference, bolstered by the growth of the denomination in Africa and elsewhere, may have the votes to retain the current stances on sexuality, for instance, but it will not have the power to enforce its decisions and so the resistance will only get worse.

On the other hand, should conferences and congregations be allowed to form a new expression of global Methodism, all kinds of exciting possibilities and ministry opportunities await us. Ideally, if annual conferences as a whole choose to make the shift, then the vast majority of our congregations will never even have to vote on the questions. But even if conferences do not change, local churches still can do so, choosing to align with a larger group that more closely mirrors their own convictions and aspirations.

All kinds of details still need to be worked out, of course. Pastors and congregations need to be afforded a transition period so that if clergy and churches choose separate paths there will still be a chance to make that shift more graciously without an immediate appointment change. And bishops too will have to determine their own destinies, with each of them honestly following their convictions no matter where they may lead.

There is still time, however, for those writing the specific language of the proposal to address such concerns, and at the General Conference there will still be the possibility of amendment. But if the gist of what has been proposed can be enacted, Methodists can do something rather remarkable which other Protestant bodies have been unable to accomplish: separating without all the acrimony and legal and financial fighting that has marked such divisions elsewhere.

My hope is that those of us who may leave the UM Church may go out as new missionaries to the world, ready to follow the original guiding vision of our movement, “to spread scriptural holiness” across the globe. And I genuinely wish that as these two new expressions of Methodism emerge, we will once again be able to look upon each other as brothers and sisters, or at least “cousins” in Christ, and not simply adversaries across a General Conference committee or assembly room.

Yes, if the protocol is adopted, conservatives will walk away from much of what we have helped to build over the decades. But the words of Jim Elliot, the famed missionary of the last century, come to mind: “he is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose.”

The truth is that we cannot keep going the way we have been. And we dare not lose the gospel with which we have all been entrusted. The protocol is at present our best pathway to peace.


The Rev. Dr. Chappell Temple is the lead pastor at Christ United Methodist Church in Sugar Land, Texas. He has also served as an adjunct faculty member for Perkins School of Theology.

UMC’s Hope for the Future – The Traditional Plan

August 21, 2018

This article is from the Wesleyan Covenant Association and is about one of the three plans to be brought before the called General Conference in St. Louis in February of 2019. Described below is the Traditional Plan and some history that has brought about the proposal of three different plans: The Traditional Plan, The One Church Plan and the Connectional plan.

This is the second of three articles briefly describing and analyzing the various plans that are slated to come before the special, called General Conference in St. Louis, Missouri, February 23-26, 2019. Readers wanting to read the official reports, plans, and enabling legislation can click HERE. See Exhibit C, pages 82 through 130 of the whole document to review The Traditional Plan.

In January 1999 the Rev. Don Fado of St. Mark’s UM Church in Sacramento, California, presided at a same-sex union. An additional 67 UM clergy claimed they co-officiated at the faux wedding – same-sex marriage being neither recognized by the church nor the state at the time. Formal complaints were lodged against the clergy participants, but the charges were dropped and no one involved was held accountable.

In October 2013, retired Bishop, Melvin Talbert presided at a same-sex wedding in Birmingham, Alabama, in violation of The UM Church’s Book of Discipline. He did so despite the request of his colleague, Bishop Debra Wallace-Padgett, not to disrupt the good work of local churches in her episcopal area with such a provocative act of defiance. He refused and presided anyway. Talbert was never held accountable.

In July 2016 the Western Jurisdictional Conference elected the Rev. Karen Oliveto as a bishop of the whole church. It was widely know that Oliveto had presided at numerous same-sex weddings, and was herself married to a deaconess in the UM Church, all in violation of the Discipline. The next day the Western Jurisdiction bishops consecrated her and in short order she was assigned to lead the Mt. Sky Episcopal Area. Complaints have been filed against Oliveto, but to date she has not been held accountable.

These are just some of the more noteworthy examples of the blatant defiance of the Discipline over the past couple of decades. And yet, some UM centrists and progressives now profess to be alarmed that one of the plans coming before the special 2019 General Conference calls for enhanced accountability. The Traditional Plan (TP) does, among other things, just that. However, it is not nearly as onerous as its detractors make it out to be. Briefly, here are the main features of the TP.

First, it does require annual conferences and bishops to categorically state they will abide by the church’s teachings regarding its sexual ethics, definition of marriage, and ordination standards, or face stiff penalties for violating them. Again, given the serial acts of defiance and lack of accountability, this should surprise no one.

Second, for those individuals who cannot, in good conscience follow the denomination’s teachings on these matters, the TP offers a fair and even gracious way for them to step away from the UM Church.

And finally, unlike the One Church Plan, the TP provides a gracious way for any local church and any annual conference to leave the denomination without having to worry about the possibility of losing or having to litigate for their property and assets.

In short, the TP is a sincere attempt to restore good order to the church, and to refocus the denomination’s attention on its mission to make disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world.

United Methodists understand every church must have a form of governance that provides a way for it to discern God’s will when it comes to defining its core theological and ethical beliefs. (And yes, unlike supporters of the One Church Plan, proponents of the TP believe our sexual ethics, teachings on marriage, and our ordination standards are core convictions that derive from Scripture and nearly 2,000 years of Christian teaching. These are not novel or esoteric claims; they are ones the vast majority of Christian faith communities ascribe to.) It is widely known that the important task of discernment in the UM Church is the purview of the General Conference – a body composed of duly elected clergy and lay delegates from around the world that speaks authoritatively for the whole church.

For over 45 years the UM Church has engaged in a debate over its sexual ethics, teachings on marriage, and its ordination standards. For many years that debate was a healthy and helpful one as one General Conference after another thoughtfully, prayerfully, and graciously engaged these matters. Blue ribbon panels were formed, studies were commissioned, and reports were widely shared. General Conference delegates, with civility, candor, and grace, debated the key issues repeatedly. And the results have always been a re-affirmation of not only the UM Church’s teachings on these matters, but what the vast majority of Christians world-wide have practiced and taught, in all times and all places, for the past 2,000 years.

Unfortunately, some progressives, particularly in the past six years, have decided to reject the UM Church’s time-honored way of discerning God’s will. Even though General Conferences have reaffirmed the church’s sexual ethics, teachings on marriage, and its ordination standards, they have embarked on a strategy of ecclesial defiance. And some of our bishops have abetted their defiance, and others have even joined in it.

Therefore, it is no surprise a proposal like the TP has been submitted to the special General Conference, and that it might actually pass. Laity and clergy want local churches where all people are warmly welcomed and the Gospel of Jesus Christ is passionately proclaimed. They also want a church where clergy and bishops promote and defend its standards. They want a church where good order is maintained. And they want a church that is growing, healthy and vibrant. Proponents of the TP want nothing more and expect nothing less.

So reactionaries can make their hyperbolic claims – the TP ushers in an “inquisition” or it is only interested in “enforcing the rules”– but the fact of the matter is the vast majority of United Methodists world-wide sincerely believe the church’s sexual ethics, teachings on marriage, and its ordination standards are grounded in Scripture and 2,000 years of Christian teaching. They believe the church has openly and fairly arrived at these teachings, reaffirmed them – repeatedly– and now rightly expect its clergy and bishops to abide by and embrace them. Current and prospective clergy members are not entitled to violate UM Church standards with impunity. And a church that prizes unity, health, and vitality cannot endlessly tolerate those who would brazenly undermine its core theological and ethical convictions.

Simply put, after years of defiance, the TP calls for the reaffirmation of the church’s sexual ethics, teachings on marriage and its ordination standards. It calls for accountability for those who refuse to abide by them. And it offers a generous and gracious pathway for those who want or need to part ways with the UM Church.


Walter Fenton is an elder in the Greater New Jersey Annual Conference and the WCA’s vice-president for strategic engagement.

Hate Groups Do Not Know Jesus Christ

August 16, 2017

Below you will see my response to a post on Dobianchi.com (https://dobianchi.com/2017/08/14/charlottesville-donald-trump/) about the riots and the slurs and threats made against Jews and other minority groups in our America. Dobianchi is my son in law. He is the father of my two granddaughters and is deeply saddened when he thinks about his children (I am as well) having to face such prejudiced hatred toward them.  I pray for God to bless them daily by keeping them safe and for them to feel the love that is poured out on them by a Judeo Christian family.

Jeremy, thanks for this posting. What saddens me most is the hate message that the KKK and other White Supremacist organizations espouse. Especially when they claim to be Christian. Denouncing those organizations is just not enough. There needs to be coming from the Christian community a very loud and firm voice saying that anyone who participates in or condones these groups cannot not be a follower of Jesus Christ. Christianity given to us by the New Testament, the Gospel Message, the letters of Paul and others leave no room for hatred or condemnation of Jews much less any other race or religion. Jesus’ message in Matthew 22:36-40 is about how we put God and neighbor first in our lives. There is nowhere to be found a message that says we are to be filled with so much hate for a group of people that we should resort to violence to impose our will on them or destroy them. As a Pastor, I am bewildered by the assumption that because it was Jewish leadership that had Jesus crucified we should hate Jews. Jesus was a Jewish Rabbi. He was faithful to the law that He came to help us understand. His ministry was to help us see the compassion and service the law held people to and to help us see that man had made parts of the law unbearable. His love and compassion for humanity set us free to love and worship God as well as emphasized the need to be compassionate servants for and to our neighbors. Hug and kiss those semi-semite grandaughters of ours. As long as they know they are loved by God and by family they will be able to withstand those who follow hateful ideologies. Your Mother in law and Father in law love you.

 

 

Fruit of the Spirit

August 14, 2017

In light of recent events in Charlottesville, Virginia I got to thinking about a recent article I wrote. See Fruit of the Spirit below. As I watched television and heard all the talking heads voice their opinions and read postings on Facebook I wondered where Christ was in all of the Chaos. I believe He was in the denouncement of hate filled rhetoric. There is no doubt that the cause of the death and injury lie at the feet of the protesters on the far, far right. The white supremacist movement stands for everything that Jesus Christ fought against in His ministry. Paul in his letter to the Galatians caught the essence of Jesus’ ministry in his example of The Fruit of the Spirit. The Holy Spirit is nowhere to be found in the rioting and or hate speech that so many participate in, in media resource and outlets today. The Beatitudes in Matthew 5 give us another look at how our lives are to be lived. If you are a Christian in the world today you are called to be a peacemaker for then you shall be called a child of God!

Fruit of the Spirit.

If I quote scripture and say the Fruit of the Spirit is Love, Joy, Peace,
Patience, Kindness, Generosity, Faithfulness, Gentleness and Self Control would  you then say well that is nine fruits and that should be plural as in Fruits of the Spirit. Paul, who wrote Galatians, was very specific about saying The Fruit of the Spirit. During our Bible Study we are watching a video by James Merritt about the Fruit of the Spirit. As I have thought about this and have incorrectly called it the Fruits of the Spirit, I can see why Paul specifically used the term Fruit instead of Fruits. If left to us to follow this scripture we would naturally look and see it as nine different categories of being in the Spirit. We would then start categorizing the Fruit and saying we have an abundance of this fruit but not enough of that fruit. Our judgement would be impaired by just that, our judgment. We could and probably would found churches on this fruit being more of who God calls us to be than any other and begin to ignore the others.There would be the Church of the Greater Fruits of Love, Joy and Peace. Then there would be the Church of the Minor Fruits of Patience, Kindness and Generosity. The Church of Faithfulness, Gentleness and Self Control would organize and advertise that they are the only and right Church of the Fruits of the Spirit.

So, if you don’t think it could happen just look at the division within the
Church world-wide. Many have staked a claim to having the only right way to worship God when He simply wants us to live in Love with our neighbor, to be filled with the Joy of knowing Him and His Son Jesus Christ, having the Peace that passes all understanding, being patient with those who will not commit, showing kindness to all, giving with a generous heart to those in need, committed to a life of faithfulness to His Way, reflecting the gentleness of Jesus to all and exampling self control in a world that says anything goes. Yes, I think Paul knew what he was doing when he wrote Fruit of the Spirit. Makes sense to me anyway. Being in Christ is being filled with the Holy Spirit and showing the world the whole Fruit of the Spirit.

Have a blessed Fruit filled day,

Pastor Randy

Fruit of the Spirit

July 5, 2017

Fruit of the Spirit.

If I quote scripture and say the Fruit of the Spirit is Love, Joy, Peace,
Patience, Kindness, Generosity, Faithfulness, Gentleness and Self Control would  you then say well that is nine fruits and that should be plural as in Fruits of the Spirit. Paul, who wrote Galatians, was very specific about saying The Fruit of the Spirit. During our Bible Study we are watching a video by James Merritt about the Fruit of the Spirit. As I have thought about this and have incorrectly called it the Fruits of the Spirit, I can see why Paul specifically used the term Fruit instead of Fruits. If left to us to follow this scripture we would naturally look and see it as nine different categories of being in the Spirit. We would then start categorizing the Fruit and saying we have an abundance of this fruit but not enough of that fruit. Our judgement would be impaired by just that, our judgment. We could and probably would found churches on this fruit being more of who God calls us to be than any other and begin to ignore the others.There would be the Church of the Greater Fruits of Love, Joy and Peace. Then there would be the Church of the Minor Fruits of Patience, Kindness and Generosity. The Church of Faithfulness, Gentleness and Self Control would organize and advertise that they are the only and right Church of the Fruits of the Spirit.

So, if you don’t think it could happen just look at the division within the
Church world-wide. Many have staked a claim to having the only right way to worship God when He simply wants us to live in Love with our neighbor, to be filled with the Joy of knowing Him and His Son Jesus Christ, having the Peace that passes all understanding, being patient with those who will not commit, showing kindness to all, giving with a generous heart to those in need, committed to a life of faithfulness to His Way, reflecting the gentleness of Jesus to all and exampling self control in a world that says anything goes. Yes, I think Paul knew what he was doing when he wrote Fruit of the Spirit. Makes sense to me anyway. Being in Christ is being filled with the Holy Spirit and showing the world the whole Fruit of the Spirit.

Have a blessed Fruit filled day,

Pastor Randy

Advents Love, Joy, Hope and Peace

December 15, 2016

What a great time of year the Christmas Season presents to us. We are gifted with the celebration of the birth of Jesus. When we come into the Christmas Season we are often distracted by many activities such as parties, shopping, planning a family get together and for many of us earning a living still has to go on. In all of these distractions it truly is important that we focus on the saving graces God gifts us with and the opportunity he presents us with to experience all that the birth of Jesus means to this world.

Our tradition says that the four Sundays before Christmas day are a time when we celebrate the attributes that Jesus examples for us in His teachings and His life as a Jewish Rabbi. His love for us, His joy in living and teaching, the hope He gives us in eternal life and the peace that passes all understanding are those gifts. Gifts that our focus really needs to be pin pointed on.

The secular world that we live in is full of distractions that take our focus away from who Jesus call His children to be. If during these distractions we can think and act with our focus on Love, Joy, Hope and Peace we can and will be a people who example the life and Spirit of Jesus Christ to a secular world.

I hope all have a very blessed Christmas giving those gifts that Jesus gave to us. Through your Love for Christ show the world the Joy you have within you, the Hope for eternal life in heaven that is awaiting you and the Peace that His Holy Spirit can bring to you.

Have a blessed Christmas Season and a blessed New Year too,

Randy

Happy Birthday/Independence Day, July 4th 2015

July 3, 2015

 

Big crowds come out for Denver's Fourth of July celebration

Brady

Emilee, Tobey, Brady

While July 4th is the day we celebrate our national independence from British rule it is also the day we celebrate (in the Branch and Bellow household) the birth of our grandson Brady Bellow. Brady turns 14 this year and is growing up into a handsome and a very nice young man. I took this picture at Emilee’s graduation and it is the most recent one I have with Brady in it. I will confess that I surely am proud of all of my grandchildren and celebrate everyday because of the blessings and joy they bring into my life. Happy Birthday Brady Bellow. May God bless you and be with you all of your life.

Remember Jeremiah 29:11 – 11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. 12 Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. 13 You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.

If we seek Him with all of our heart we will example the fruit of the Spirit that Paul tells us about in Galatian’s 5:22:

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self- control.

Love and Forgiveness in Jesus Christ at Mother Emmanuel AME Church

June 24, 2015

586

Sometimes I wonder if, as Christians, we really have a grasp on what it means to be a follower of Jesus Christ. Then I hear the words of forgiveness from the relatives of the nine Christians that were slain in the Mother Emmanuel AME Church in Charleston, South Carolina. I know now that at least some of us who claim Christ as savior have the right understanding of the teachings of Jesus Christ. That may sound harsh but I am hearing more about the Confederate Flag in the media than I am about the words that were spoken by those who are grieving over lost loved ones.

How important those words and actions were to Charleston cannot be underestimated. Such a positive message in a time of shock and horror that reflects the true teachings of Jesus Christ. Words that may have been instrumental in preventing the rioting and looting that seem to follow such acts of violence. Charleston has shown the world the face of Jesus Christ even if the state still flies the Confederate Flag.

Wouldn’t it be a great thing if the news media were to not pay homage to the rantings of a young person that is obviously misguided by some sort of indoctrination into a hate filled belief system. What if they were to really focus on the reason why those who are suffering are willing to forgive such a horrendous act because of their belief in the teachings found in the Holy Bible.

No matter how people want to skew the message of Jesus Christ they cannot ever equate hate or hateful actions with Love God with all your heart, mind and soul, and love your neighbor as yourself.

Matthew 22:37 -He said to him, “ ‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind. ’ This is the greatest and first commandment. And a second is like it:‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself. ’ On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.

Because we love God and neighbor we can forgive. Everything depends upon it for us to have a peaceful nation, state and life.

Have a blessed day by living in the teachings of Jesus Christ and remember the families of those slain in prayer,

Pastor Randy

Pastor’s Ponderings, Wonderings, Wanderings

April 25, 2015

IMG_0553

Wesley United Methodist Church served 239 students at The Wesley Student Center of Lamar University in Beaumont. While I did not get pictures of the students (we were kind of busy) I did get this picture of the Churches members, plus 1, serving. From right to left is Pastor Randy Branch, Jean Koontz, Katy Beckett, Jan Neely, Rev. Anjelita Dirden (the plus 1), Wanda Barron and Harvey Wilson. We enjoyed being able to serve those students and it is always well received with many thank you’s from the students. A blessing to all of us who served and we hope a blessing to the students. Thanks to Pastor Anjelita for being such a gracious host and spiritual leader to all youth at Lamar University.

On a not so positive note we also heard that the district is shutting down the Wesley Student Center. Pastor Anjelita will be moving on to another place of ministry. I am not privy to all of the reasons why but I am sure the District Superintendent will let us know at our District meeting tomorrow. I am sure that there are some very good reasons for this closing of the student center but it does seem to me that when we take away opportunities for people to be touched by Christian love we are hurting the world. Seeds planted many times do not grow until years later. With so many different ethnic groups coming through that serving line I cannot think of a better way to touch the hearts of so many from so many different cultures.

Pastor Randy