Scholarship recipients

June 21, 2017

Kazmine Godwin and Kagen Burkett are the 2017 recipients of $500 scholarships awarded by the Methodist Women of Hemphill First United Methodist Church. Inscribed Bibles were presented to the graduates at Worship Services on June 18.

Kazmine Godwin graduated Magna Cum Laude, with a weighted ranking point average of 97.19. She ranked 8th in her class and will begin her freshman year at Texas A & M University in College Station, Texas.  Pursuing a Bachelor’s Degree in Allied Health with an eye to a Master’s Degree in order to become an Occupational Therapist, Kazmine has 34 college credit hours with a GPA of 3.0.  Kazmine is the daughter of Bettine & Patrick Godwin of Hemphill, and the granddaughter of Norma Godwin and the late Bill Godwin.  Kazmine also received a $500 scholarship from the Methodist Men of Hemphill United Methodist Church.

Kagen Burkett is the son of April Burkett and grandson of Gail and Tony Fuller of Rosevine, Texas. He intends to study Animal Science with an emphasis on a pre-veterinary track at Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, Texas.  Upon receiving that degree, he plans to enter Veterinary School at Texas A & M University to earn a Master’s and eventually a Doctorate Degree in veterinary medicine.  He carries into his freshmen year, 24 college credit hours with a 3.96 average.  Graduating Magna Cum Laude at HISD, ranking 4th in his graduating class, Kagen had a weighted ranking point average of 98.70.

 

The Methodist Women are proud to award scholarships to these deserving and admirable young people, Kazmine Godwin and Kagen Burkett, and with the community, wish them much success.


Hemphill High School, Class of 2017, seniors honored

June 5, 2017

Thirty – Seventh (37th!) Senior Luncheon

The tradition of hosting the graduating seniors of Hemphill High School continues. Since 1980 the Methodist Women have provided a luncheon following the last graduation practice each May.   This year the luncheon was held on Wednesday, May 24.   It is a joy to interact with the seniors as they enjoy a last occasion to eat together before they embark on individual future plans. 

This year the congregation was invited to participate in congratulating these young people by writing a note or letter to someone selected at random. The cards were collected and with the gift of an FUMC writing pen were presented to each senior at the luncheon individually with good wishes and some hugs.  Thanks to all in the congregation who took part in this effort to identify personally with a senior. 

MW President Carole Teagle and Pastor Grant welcomed the class and Kazmine Godwin, one of the scholarship recipients and frequent attendee of FUMC gave the blessing before the meal.

The 74 seniors, their sponsors, senior teachers, and administrators enjoyed a bounty of food, beverages, and desserts. Such is the tradition as several teachers recalled their Senior Luncheon when they graduated from HISD.

Some of the many women who worked to decorate the fellowship hall and prepare the food worked quickly as students arrived. The 2017 senior class was extremely respectful and appreciative of the collective efforts of First United Methodist Church.

 

 


United Methodist Prayer for Families

May 22, 2017

In the United Methodist calendar, May is designated as Christian Home Month. Discipleship Ministries offers many resources to help families on their spiritual journeys, including this prayer for families written by MaryJane Pierce Norton.

We invite you to view this video meditation, share the link with others and download the video for use in worship, Sunday school or other settings @ http://www.umc.org/videos.

 

Prayer

Gracious God, who created all of humankind and showed to us the importance of relationships with one another,

we commend to your care all the families of our community and our world.

We pray that each home may be a home where love is felt.

We pray for homes where, instead of love, hurt, abuse, and suffering abide.

We pray for children, youth, and adults, recognizing the importance of and the gift of every age as we grow.

May your grace be present to all.

Grant us wisdom to know where there is no love, courage to act out of love for others, and peace to trust in your grace.

Help us to live so that the commandments of love for you and love for others are shown in the ways we live together.

 

Source:

United Methodist Communications http://www.umc.org/videos.


Where did Good Friday get its name?

April 12, 2017

The source of our term for the Friday before Easter, “Good Friday,” is not clear.  It may be a corruption of the English phrase “God’s Friday,” according to Professor Laurence Hull Stookey in Calendar: Christ’s Time for the Church (p. 96). It is the common name for the day among English- and Dutch-speaking people. It is a day that proclaims God’s purpose of loving and redeeming the world through the cross of our Lord, Jesus Christ. It is a day that is good because God was drawing the world to God’s self in Christ. As seen in John’s gospel, particularly, God was in control. God was not making the best of a bad situation, but was working out God’s intention for the world — winning salvation for all people. We call it “good” because we look backward at the crucifixion through the lens of Easter!

Join us for Good Friday Service, April 14, 2017 @ 5:00 p.m.

 


Window Changes Reflect Vision

April 12, 2017

 

At First United Methodist Church Hemphill our vision is

to light the way to Christ through

compassion, fellowship, and spiritual growth.


UMCOR Sunday

March 16, 2017

“A generous person will be enriched, and one who gives water will get water.” Proverbs 11:25, NRSV

March 26 is UMCOR Sunday, formerly One Great Hour of Sharing.

 

GIVE NOW – A SPECIAL SUNDAY

Your gift offers people everywhere help and hope.

For more information on the vision, the work of the United Methodist Committee on Relief, go to:

http://www.umcgiving.org/UMCOR

 


“The invitation is to all:” A Wesley hymn devotion for Lent

March 11, 2017

A UMC.org Feature by Joe Iovino*

March 1, 2017, Ash Wednesday

This is the first in a series about hymns during Lent. Read more about musical devotions.

 

United Methodists are likely to sing Charles Wesley’s “Come, Sinners, to the Gospel Feast” sometime during Lent, the weeks leading up to Easter. The hymn invites everyone to receive new life in Jesus Christ.

Some people have a spiritual gift for making others feel welcome. Gifted parents make their sons and daughters’ fiancées feel part of the family on their first Easter together. Generous students and welcoming coworkers eat lunch with those who are new. Kind church members alleviate the anxiety of parents of squirming kids by offering a warm smile from across the row.

Jesus demonstrated the ability to turn a stranger into a friend. He ate with those whom others kept at arm’s length; chose a tax collector as part of his inner circle; and made Samaritans heroes in his stories. Jesus invited all to follow him, regardless of their personal history or social standing.

Lent: A season of welcome

Lent is often understood as a time that is all about us, the people who are already part of the church. We use the season to focus on our inner lives through fasting and abstinence and spend extra time in private prayer and devotion. We attend special worship services and Bible studies where we use old words like penitence that need explaining.

But Lent is also a time of welcome.

Baptism, the sacrament through which we are initiated into the Church, was a central part of the earliest celebrations of the resurrection of Jesus on Easter Sunday. Before the church formalized Lent into a liturgical season, they used the weeks before Easter to prepare converts to be welcomed into the community of faith through baptism.

In 18th century England, some people felt welcome in the church, while others did not. Righting this wrong was part of the impetus of John Wesley and the early Methodist movement.

The first Methodists were intentional about welcoming everyone. They preached where people gathered—town squares and fields near mines. In their meetinghouses, they educated children and distributed medical care to those who could not afford to see a doctor. They also visited prisons to share the gospel of Jesus Christ there.

These ministries grew out of what Wesley taught about God’s grace. He used the phrase prevenient grace to describe the love God has for everyone, even before we are aware of it (prevenient means “coming before”).

This also meant Wesley viewed the sacrament of Holy Communion differently from many of his colleagues. He began to celebrate an “open table,” which United Methodists still practice today. This means that regardless of church membership or lack of it, all who love Jesus, earnestly repent of their sin, and seek to live in peace with one another are welcome at the table where they can begin a new life of discipleship..

The invitation in song

Charles Wesley’s “Come, Sinners, to the Gospel Feast,” extends the invitation in song.

First published under the heading, “Hymn 50, The Great Supper, Luke 14:16-24” in Hymns for Those that Seek and Those that have Redemption in the Blood of Jesus Christ (Redemption Hymns 1747), the song invites us both to the communion table (see The United Methodist Hymnal #616) and to enter new life in Jesus Christ (see UMH #339). Together, the two occurrences in the hymnal use only nine of the 24 verses Wesley penned. Read Charles Wesley’s complete text here.

 

“Come, Sinners, to the Gospel Feast” performed by Rev. Clyde McLennan,

http://www.smallchurchmusic3.com.

 

The scripture reference in the heading is a parable Jesus tells about many who decline an invitation to a banquet by giving a variety of excuses. Wesley as narrator begins in the role of the servant charged with making the invitation on behalf of the host:

Come, sinners, to the gospel-feast,

 Let every soul be Jesu’s guest,

 You need not one be left behind,

 For God hath bidden all mankind.

 

Sent by my Lord, on you I call,

The invitation is to all.

Come all the world: come, sinner, thou,

 All things in Christ are ready now. (verses 1-2)

 

Wesley wants to be sure we each know there is a place for us at the communion table and in life with Jesus. If anyone thinks the invitation is not for them, Wesley is clear,

Sinners my gracious Lord receives,

 Harlots, and publicans, and thieves,

 Drunkards, and all the hellish crew,

 I have a message now to you. (verse 13)

 

Living the song

In the verses that follow, Wesley urges us who have accepted Christ’s invitation to become servants who invite others to come to the feast and enter into this new life of discipleship. He puts these words on Jesus’ lips,

Tell them, my grace for all is free,

 They cannot be too bad for me.

Tell them, their sins are all forgiven,

 Tell every creature under heaven. (verses 17b-18a)

 

Wesley then closes the hymn with a reminder that this gracious invitation is also a call to live a new life in Jesus that can begin today.

This is the time, no more delay,

 This is the acceptable day,

 Come in, this moment, at his call,

 And live for him who died for all. (verse 24)

This Lent, as we seek to strengthen our inner lives in preparation for Easter, let us also be people of invitation. May we not only come to the table ourselves, but invite others to join us in a relationship with Jesus Christ. With the words of Wesley’s hymn on our lips, we open the doors of our hearts, homes, and churches to welcome all to know the love and forgiveness of God through Jesus Christ.

 

*Joe Iovino works for UMC.org at United Methodist Communications.