Celebration Sunday!

 

This Sunday, we are celebrating the life and mission of Royse City First United Methodist Church! I am so excited to hear our Children’s Chime Choir and our Pre-K Children’s choir!  A special thanks goes out to our Wednesday night Children’s Music Directors: Susanne Zoch, Samantha Twombly, and Angela Minter.  Thanks for helping our young disciples prepare to lead us in worship through music. It is amazing to have our children stand up and express their faith through music!

 

 

As your pastor, I want to say thank you to all of you… you make our church amazing! Thank you for your continued support of the life and ministry of our church. Without your prayers, presence, gifts, service and witness, this church wouldn’t be the place it’s been for over 130 years.

 

I want to thank you in advance for supporting the ministry and mission of our church as we look toward the future. As I shared last Sunday, our Finance Committee is proposing a budget of $338,997 for 2018. This is 5% higher than what we are expecting to receive in 2017.

 

We will have an opportunity during both worship services to bring our “Estimated Giving” and our “You Belong Here” cards up to the altar.  As you bring your cards forward, you’ll be invited to pick up a piece of our historic sanctuary.   Trustee member Neal Jenkins has taken wood that’s been removed from the sanctuary and has cut them into small pieces as a token for all of us: to help us remember the extraordinary things that members of our church did in 1904 by building an incredible sanctuary… and the extraordinary things we will continue to do as we move forward in faith!

 

I am so humbled and honored to be your pastor, and I look forward to serving with you as we continue to do extraordinary things!
 
Be God’s,
Pastor Chris
 


Thoughts about Las Vegas

I don’t have words. I went to the gym this morning, listening to the usual sports talk on my radio. I climbed up on an elliptical machine and looked up the three TVs in the front of the room. Two of them were rehashing the weekend’s sports victories, and the third showed this headline at the bottom of the screen: 50 dead, 200 wounded in the largest mass shooting in the United States history.

 

My heart sank and I immediately started praying for the families that lost loved ones… those innocent bystanders who were experiencing a long weekend full of country music, many of whom I’m sure were on a once-in-a-lifetime trip to the Las Vegas strip.

 

Then the shots rang out.

 

I’ve avoided saying anything because what is there to say, really? I have friends who are already talking about stricter gun laws and friends saying we shouldn’t restrict gun laws. The arguments over the next few days will get louder and louder and then fade as if nothing ever happened.

 

What’s missing? We refuse to listen. We refuse to learn.

 

As a pastor, I turned to scripture, as I watched the events unfold, Psalm 23:4 came to mind. “Even when I walk through the darkest valley, I fear no danger because you are with me. Your rod and your staff – they protect me.”

 

In the midst of the darkest valley, I see images of God: people pulling others to safety, people taking off their shirts to bandage the wounded and cover the faces of the slain. I see images of God in the doctors and nurses that were called to the hospitals to help the hundreds of wounded through hours of surgery. I see God in the line of people giving blood to help during this senseless tragedy.  All of that is good… but I’m ready to see God in situations that don’t require a tragedy of epic proportions.

 

I’m praying for God to show up in our conversations over the next few days. Something is broken, and we need to stop, listen, and find a way together to fix what’s broken. May we have the grace to listen to each other so we can come up with a plan to make people safe, and stand against all forms of evil when it threatens the world around us.
 
Be God’s,


Thanks for Everything! Exciting Times Ahead!

What a fantastic year we’ve had at Royse City First United Methodist Church!

 

As a church we’ve affirmed our mission and established our vision, and we’ve designed a new logo that honors our history and points to a great future of proclaiming the love and grace of Jesus Christ!

 

The work in Wesley Hall is finished, the sanctuary is getting a well-deserved and much-needed facelift, plus we have new equipment in the sanctuary to ensure that we’re providing a top-notch worship experience for our members and guests.

 

Our new signature ministry “Wednesday Night Fusion” has kicked off with more kids and youth than last year! Plus, they are joined by our adults participating in Disciple 1 & 2 and our Chancel Choir!  It truly is an exciting time in the life of our church.

 

None of this would’ve been possible without for your prayers, presence, gifts, service, and witness! Royse City First United Methodist Church is a giving church. We are a church that sees how Christ has made a difference in our lives, and we want to make a difference for others!  So thank you for all you’ve done to make this happen!

 

On October 8, we will kick off our annual stewardship campaign. If you are new to our church, this is the time where we give thanks for the work God has done in our church, and we look forward to supporting our ministries in 2018.

 

During this campaign, we will pass out a narrative budget focused on our church’s vision. You will also receive an “Estimate of Giving” card, and we will pass out our “You Belong Here” card.  You’re invited to prayerfully complete both cards, which will help our committees plan our 2018 outreach opportunities.

 

Our theme for this year’s stewardship campaign is “What if…?” Each week will focus on a different “What if?” statement: What if we prayed?  What if we seek God first?  What if we do something extraordinary?

 

On October 22, we will have special celebration services at 8:30am and 11am led by our children and youth as we return our cards for 2018.

 

Please be in prayer on how you will continue to support the ministries of our church in 2018.

I’m so excited for the ministry we will embark on next year, and I’m humbled and honored to be your pastor, friend, and co-worker in the ministry of Jesus Christ!

 

Be God’s,

Pastor Chris



Continued Help and Prayers for Recent Disasters

 

What a past couple of months we have had. Multiple hurricanes, earthquakes, and wildfires. Each day I stop and say a prayer trying to figure out the best way to respond to those in need.

When I see pictures of Purto Rico getting slammed again by Hurricane Maria, building collapsed in Mexico City, people are working to dig out homes on the gulf coast and Florida; I want to help. I want to be there.

There are two ways we can help! The first way to help is by giving. The United Methodist Committee on Relief is there helping in the midst of this suffering.

Follow this link to see five ways you can help. Remember 100% of your donation to UMCOR goes to help on the ground, none of it goes to administrative cost.

The second way is getting connected to an Emergency Response Team. There is a special Emergency Response Team Training this Saturday, September 23 from 9 am – 4 pm at First United Methodist Church Coppell.

Please continue to keep those who have lost so much or in the path of the storm in your prayers, and let’s continue to do what we can to help our neighbors.

Be God’s,

Pastor Chris


People Will Come

 
One of my favorite movies is “Field of Dreams.” There is a scene, where Ray is debating selling his land to save his family. Here is the clip.
 
 

We have arrived at Easter. We gather together on Thursday to remember the Last Supper, we gather at the cross on Friday, and then on Sunday, it’s resurrection!

People will come, people will come to hear about the risen Savior. People will come who may be hurting, in need to hear the Good News maybe for the first time in their lives.

My hope is that when those coming to hear the Good News on Easter, they are welcomed with open arms, with smiles, and with the radical hospitality that we are building here at First United Methodist Church of Royse City.

I look forward to seeing you this Easter weekend, and I look forward proclaiming with you all, Christ is risen! Christ is risen indeed!
 
Be God’s,
 
Pastor Chris


Praying for our community churches

During our HCI weekend, George Fisk, our lead consultant, mentioned something that has been a huge part of my ministry over the past several years. He mentioned the blessings of partnering with other congregations in the community.

In previous appointments, I was intentional in lifting up other churches in the community to let them know that they have a partner in ministry with me. Each week I would send a card to a different congregation letting them know that they were being lifted up in prayer. That the work they did was important and that I didn’t see them as competition but as partners in the sharing the gospel in the community.

I invite you to pray for these congregation too! Each week in the bulletin, you will see a Royse City area church lifted up. Please be in prayer for that pastor and congregation.

So when you are taking time out of your day to lift up our church, just remember the other sister and brothers in our community and say a quick prayer for them too.

Thank you for all you do to share the love of Christ with each other and with our community!

Be God’s,

Pastor Chris



HCI Weekend

The weekend we have been talking about for the past seven months is finally here. From February 10-12 we will have a group of consultants from around the North Texas Conference come and hear about our church.

You have an important role to play in this weekend. This Saturday, February 11th from 10 am – 3 pm you are invited to participate in an all church training led by the consultation team. We will have childcare available for children up to 5th grade. 6th graders and up are invited to participate in the training.

Then the consultation weekend finished up during and following worship on February 12th. George Fisk, our lead consultant, will preach this weekend and after the 11:00 am service he will read the prescriptions for our church.

 

I’m excited to be a part of this weekend, and I’m looking forward to seeing how God will lead us to be a beacon of grace and light for our community. Please be in prayer for this weekend, and I’m looking forward to seeing you this weekend.
 
Be God’s,
Pastor Chris


For unto us…

“A child is born to us, a son is given to us,
and authority will be on his shoulders.
He will be named Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace.”
                                                       Isaiah 9:6 (CEB)

 

Tracy and I want to wish you all a very Merry Christmas. We have been blessed by your outpouring of love and support over the past six months, and we look forward to seeing what God has in store for us in 2017.

We do this because of a promise. The promise from Isaiah 9:6 reminds us that Christ came for us. That blessing that was born in Bethlehem wasn’t just for a select few, but he was born for everyone.

That is why this season is so important. As ones in who Christ dwells and delights, we are called to be a blessing to others. We are called to bear the light of Christ in our lives so others can see God’s love in us.

This Saturday, you are invited to join us for our Christmas Candlelight/Communion service at either 7 or 11 pm. We will tell the story of the nativity, sing traditional carols, and then participate in spreading the light of Christ around the sanctuary as a reminder of how the light and love of Jesus Christ spreads around the world.

But our celebration doesn’t end there. Sunday morning, we will gather again at 11 am to gather as brothers and sisters to proclaim the birth of the Christ child. We will bless our reverse advent boxes (it’s not too late to participate) sing more carols, and celebrate the hope, peace, joy and love that comes through the Christ Child.

Once again, Tracy and I hope that you have a blessed Christmas celebration, and we look forward to seeing all of our First United Methodist Church during our Christmas celebrations!

Merry Christmas!
chrissig
Pastor Chris and Tracy Everson


Stewardship Update

I don’t stop giving thanks to God for you when I remember you in my prayers.
                                                                                                                Ephesians 1:16

Happy Thanksgiving! I hope that you all have a blessed all-you-canweek and a day full of great food, fun, and family! I wanted to give you a quick update on our stewardship campaign. We had 45 cards turned in yielding $210,960 in pledged giving. That is amazing! We will have giving and service cards available in the entry by the stairs in the sanctuary, or you can pick them up in the church office.
We had 50 cards turned in on Sunday. Five of the cards belonged to children who participate in the life and ministry of the church. With gifts of $1.00 and $.50, their pledges totaled $130.00. That is amazing! Even our kids want to be a part of what God is doing at First United Methodist Church in Royse City.
God continues to do amazing things with our church and in our community. I’m humbled and honored to be in ministry with you, as we share Christ love with each other and our community.

Happy Thanksgiving, and Be God’s,
 
chrissig
Pastor Chris


Painting Happy Trees and Stewardship

Growing up, I loved turning on my localbobross PBS to watch a painter named Bob Ross. You can imagine my geeky joy when last June Netflix added several episodes of Bob Ross’s show “The Joy of Painting” to their streaming service. I’ve watched most of the episodes on Netflix now, and I’m still amazed at what Bob Ross was able to do in less than 30 minutes.

If you are not familiar with Bob Ross, he was a painting genius! It could be a majestic sunset, a pastoral lakeside scene next to a cabin, or a breathtaking mountainscape. It never failed, Bob Ross always delivered a masterpiece and once the show was over, you had a completed painting.

That is what we have been doing over the past four weeks; we’ve been painting a picture. This picture shows the life and ministry of First United Methodist Church in Royse City. This picture shows how we have impacted lives within our congregation and our community. This picture gives us a glimpse of the great things we have done in the past, but it also allows us to see what God can do in the future!

This Sunday is Commitment Sunday. The church is asking you to help with this painting. It is through your tithes and offerings we can do the ministry that introduces people to the love and grace of Jesus Christ. It is through your prayers, presence, service and witness that embodies the love of Christ for our children, youth, and guests.

Following the sermon, you will have the opportunity to place your giving and service cards in a basket next to the altar. If you haven’t had a chance to pick one up, we will have extra available at the entrances of the sanctuary for you to pick up.

I’m excited about this Sunday! I’m excited about what God is doing at First Royse City. I’m excited to be in partnership with you as we continue to be a place where God’s love and grace is proclaimed, and lives are changed.

I’m looking forward to Sunday, and as always I’m honored and humbled to be your pastor and your friend!
 
Be God’s,
chrissig
Pastor Chris