News Blog
By Clark Chilton on 1/23/2012 11:58 AM

Parents of 6th-12th graders: if you have not RSVP'd for a FREE lunch at the Clemmons:One Family Open House this Sunday January 29th @ 12:30, please do so right now!

email Kim at ballk@clemmonsumc.org so we can prepare for lunch. See our facilities, meet our ministry team, hear our vision, receive a free book, and so much more! (children welcome) 

A Tale of Two Tables from Fuller Youth Institute on Vimeo.

By hughesg on 1/14/2012 11:52 AM

From the Equipping Ministry Center

“What’s in a name?

The names we are given and that we choose to accept tend to shape us and form us, for better or worse. Last week in worship we were reminded of our baptisms (or encouraged to look forward to being baptized) and that, like Jesus, we are called “beloved” by God. One name that we are given as faithful followers of Jesus Christ is the name “minister.” Yes, we are all in the ministry together, the ongoing ministry of Jesus, gifted and called to do the things Jesus does: loving, teaching, healing, feeding, welcoming, offering refreshment, clothing and visiting. What if we added this statement to our congregation-joining service, “As a disciple of Jesus Christ I understand that I am part of the priesthood of all believers and the ministry of all Christians. I am a minister among ministers of the Gospel, partners with Christ and this congregation in discerning needs, initiating and doing the ministries to which I am being called according to my spiritual gifts, and in supporting the ministries of others, our congregation, and our denomination."

You may notice some changes in the way we identify our staff, those people we look to for guidance and support as we discover and live into our calling as ministers and find ways of serving according to our gifts and the needs around us. Instead of a “title” the paid staff is identified in the bulletin, the newsletter, and the website by the areas of ministry they help shepherd. It’s one step in lowering the lay/clergy divide and move us beyond the staff/volunteer designations that perpetuate a hierarchy of ministry. We are all in this together, and we are all ministers.

The word “laity” comes from the Greek word “laos” which means “all of the people,” in our case as the church, “all the people of God” and “all the followers of Jesus.” So, clergy (folk with “Rev.” in front of their name) and paid staff are part of the laity.

Old habits are hard to break. It will take us awhile for all of us to both see ourselves as ministers and accept that role from each other. But we are on the way. Embrace the name and the role. When I was an editor at the United Methodist Publishing House we’d host an annual writers conference to develop new writers for curriculum and magazine articles. These folks were not professional writers. They were experienced in some area of ministry who were willing to become writers. From the minute we welcomed them to the conference we called the “writer.” Their nametags designated them as a “writer.” Their training materials designated them as “writers.” They were listed as writers in published magazines and study books. So many of them told us that they grew into their name and actually became what we consistently called them, writers.

Embrace the name and the role of minister. And let’s continue to be about the works of ministry to which we are all being called and equipped.

By Clark Chilton on 1/12/2012 10:57 AM

I decided at the beginning of my ministry that I would be a life-long learner. One of the best
ways to gain knowledge and grow is by reading a book. I believe God's disciples should be well
informed and knowledgeable. It's amazing how much you can learn just by reading. Several
individuals in our community of faith asked if I would share a reading list so that they could
continue to grow spiritually and learn about some of the changes taking place in God's church. I
believe an informed disciple is an effective disciple. Please pick out a book and begin your
personal growth journey. I look forward to an opportunity to discuss what you've learned.

 

 Click to download Pastor Matthew's Suggested Reading List

By hughesg on 1/4/2012 3:56 PM

Welcoming experiences. . . 

Wondering if you can recall the top five life experiences of being welcomed. . . anywhere.

 

Where were you? 

 

Who welcomed you?

 

Who was with you?

 

One memory that sticks in our minds of being radically welcomed is walking into CiCi's pizza. I know that sounds crazy, but before we had both feet in the door, these were a few things we heard; "let us know if we can help you, glad you are here, is this your first visit with us"?. They did everything in their power to make sure our visit was not going to be our last. 

 

They even go one step further. If you have ever been to this pizza establishment, you know their style of service is buffet. However, they invited us to let them know if our favorite pizza wasn't in the buffet line, let them know and they would prepare it for us. WOW. . . 

 

Makes me wonder what message folks receive when they walk into the doors of our church, home, office, etc. Are they radically welcomed to the point they are anticipating with joy their next visit? Are they finding reasons to return? Are we like the folks at CiCi's pizza doing everything in our power to make sure this visit will not be the last? Christ calls us to welcome folks through feeding, clothing, visiting them where they are - in their space. . . sick or in prison. Our constant prayer is our hearts be so filled with the joy of the Lord that all who enter encounter God. 

By Clark Chilton on 1/3/2012 12:02 PM

For more info and registration visit clemmonsone.smartevents.com