Hurricane Harvey Relief

Dear St Paul Family,

Like many of you, over the last few days, I have been distressed by the destruction of Hurricane Harvey.  One of my best friends, Dr. John Stephens — the current Sr. Minister of Chapelwood UMC in Houston, and former minister of St. Peter UMC in Columbus, GA —  lives in Houston, TX.  You can watch his CNN interview below.

Many have asked how one might help.

Here Are Two Things You Can Do Now:
  1. Please continue to pray for those whose lives have been impacted by Hurricane Harvey. Please also pray for the First Responders, disaster coordinators, and many, many volunteers who are working around the clock to rescue and rebuild.
  2. Give monetary donations to relief and recovery efforts by giving directly to St. Paul UMC.  Click here to make your donation online.   If giving by check, please mark your giving “Disaster Relief.”  Every dollar counts and can make a difference.

In times like this, we are confronted with the depravity of life.  It is tragic and heart wrenching to behold.  However, there is something beautiful that will come out of this:  the power of a loving community.  When people seek to love another by meeting the needs of those suffering and hurting, we see the power of the divine.  I’m convinced this is one of the proofs of God’s goodness.  The fact that there is goodness in the world, people who love and care because that is the right thing to do is evidence of something bigger than us.

May God bless you as you care for those in need.



Exclusive Interview with Cole and Thomas

Loving Your World: Nepal

Thomas and Cole have returned from their 3 weeks in Nepal, and they are extremely excited about sharing what God is doing in their lives and in the lives of those they served in Nepal.

Young Hearts

We are on a mission to build relationships between the “Hearts of our Young” and the “Young Hearts” of St. Paul (ages 6-12 and over 65).

By joining this group you are committing yourself to becoming a friend through writing, sharing your day-to-day lives with a friend from a different generation.  Registration begins on August 20, 2017.

Click here for more information

Thank you for donating!

Thank you to St. Paul UMC for making our Blood Drive this past Sunday a bloody success. We collected 36 usable units of blood which will supply life saving blood products for up to 108 needy patients in the Valley area!! An extra shout out goes to Jill Land as a FIRST TIME DONOR!!!!

Thanks also goes to Fontaine Jenkins, Kathy Hollon, Tim Sawyer, Mark Graham, Dudley Graham (Double Reds), Doug McLeod, Kathryn Roberts, Ken Chung, Mark Ellis, Craig Rockenstein, LaVonne Rockenstein, Amber Van Bibber, Bob Patton, Amanda Barbaree, Eric Kilgore, Mary Powers, Jacob Duenke, Jose Ruiz (Double Reds), Thomas Forsberg, Francis Thompson (Double Reds), Jackie Hutwagner, Will Cliatt, Al Gaston, Renee Lorentz, Steve Lorentz, Will Burgin, Nancy Wright, Brent Wright, Joy Sloan, Tonya Badcock, Crockett Miller, Karyn Tomczak, Rebecca Troutman, and Ambrose Cross. 

Thanks again and look for your next opportunity to help save a life at our next Blood Drive on Sunday, October 8, 2017.

First Steps – August 14, 2017

E. Stanley Jones, an American missionary to India once said, “There are two groups of people in this world. There is a very big group of people in this world who are miserable. They live for themselves. There’s another group who have given their lives away to others. Their lives are filled with a wild joy.”

This week, find a way to live for another.  Notice the people around you.  Invite them into your life.  Speak words of love and grace to them.  In doing so, we can find joy in serving The One who makes us whole.

I invite you to read the Bible with me – This week’s reading:
Monday – John 16
Tuesday – John 17
Wednesday – John 18
Thursday – John 19
Friday – John 20

Please pray for:
* The St. Paul UMC Capital Building Campaign.
* The United Methodist Church.
* Our Nation and Leaders.
* Teachers and Students as they return to school.

First Steps – August 7, 2017

How do you deal with heavy burdens?  Henri Nouwen, a Christian mystic, shared this experience of a time when he was carrying multiple burdens.  In his book, A Spirituality of Homecoming, he wrote about a time where he was depressed about everything and while lecturing in Arizona, visited the Grand Canyon.  There, he said, “I saw this multimillion-year-old canyon and its place in an even older creation and thought that if that whole time period were represented by one hour, then I probably was born in a tiny fraction of the last second.  Looking at the Grand Canyon, this enormous abyss of beauty, I thought, ‘My dear, why are you overcome by these problems?’  My depression fell away.  In the face of all this, what are you worried about, as if you were carrying the burden of the world?  Something has gone on before you and something will go on after you, so why don’t you enjoy the brief time you’ve been given?”

For Nouwen, seeing the Grand Canyon was like seeing a wound in the earth.  For him, just seeing the enormity of the Grand Canyon and walking around it was like entering the vastness of God’s divine love.  He realized he could acknowledge his burdens and not be paralyzed by them.

I don’t know if you are carrying heavy burdens or if you have ever visited the Grand Canyon.  The real remedy for our burdens is the love God.  When I find myself in the same place as Nouwen, I think on two verses:

Cast your cares on him, he cares for you (1 Peter 5:7).
Come all who are weary and heavy burden, and I will give you rest (Matthew 11:28).

I invite you to read the Bible with me – This week’s reading:
Monday – John 11
Tuesday – John 12
Wednesday – John 13
Thursday – John 14
Friday – John 15

Please pray for:
* The St. Paul UMC Capital Building Campaign.
* The United Methodist Church.
* Our Nation and Leaders.
* Teachers and Students as they return to school.