Message from Pastor Mike

Our Trustees' Chairperson, Bud Heronimus, and I were looking at some of the landscaping around the church, and we noticed a clump of three bushes that didn't have a single leaf on them. They looked like dead sticks, but we weren't sure if they were completely lifeless yet. As we stood there looking at them, we talked about how to dig them up and get rid of them, but we chose to wait and see what they did. We decided that if they haven't put out any leaves by the end of the season then we would hook them to the truck and pull them out. A week later all three of them had leaves. I'm glad we gave them a chance to live.
Our experience with the bushes reminds me of a parable Jesus told about a man with a fig tree in his vineyard. For three years, the owner of the vineyard kept coming to the tree looking for figs, but the tree never produced any fruit. He told the gardener to cut it down. The gardener asked that instead of cutting it down, let him work with the tree for another year. If it produced fruit next year, then it was worth it. If it still didn't produce any fruit, then he would hook it to the truck and pull it out.
We don't know the outcome of the vineyard owner's fig tree. Jesus doesn't share that part of the story because the outcome of the story is up to those who hear it. Everyone who hears the parable is the tree, and Jesus expects believer's faith to bear fruit for the kingdom of God. Whether they actually bear fruit depends on their willingness to let God's Spirit work within them. As the gardener works with the fig tree, so does God's Spirit work with us to produce love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. The good news for us is that God isn't getting the chain ready to hook us to the truck next year. The determination of God is to work within us to bear fruit for the kingdom never ends. It's up to us whether or not we're going to respond to God's eagerness to cultivate fruit in our lives.
Blessings,
Mike
The Church's Praise Band "Surrendered" will be Playing at the
Blue Springs Fall Fun Fest
 Free Admission - Family Friendly
Saturday, September 15th, at 8:00pm
Restoration Stage at 306 NW 11th St.
Join the Samaritan's Sunday School Class on 
Saturday, September 15th, from 10:00am - 12:00pm
at Christ UMC to help with some outside church work.
Any questions? Contact Bill Reinwald at 816-726-7631.
Community Fun Day
Saturday, September 22, 2018 from 3:30-5:30pm
Everyone is welcome to attend this Community Fun Day on Sept. 22. We will have lots of activities, food, games, and fellowship. 
We need lots of volunteers to make this a great event for our neighborhood. Contact Jennifer Rambo at 816-529-9020 if you are interested in helping.

Join Us for Christ UMC Adult Co-Ed Volleyball on Tuesday Nights!
7:00pm in the Family Life Center
Adult Mission Trip to Puerto Rico still has Openings

There are still 4 openings for anyone interested in going on the Adult Mission Trip to Puerto Rico. Contact Teri Gulick at 816-645-2007 or Mike Costanzo at mike.costanzo@icumc.org if you are interested in going.
Youth Team Spirit Night at BYF2TP (6th-12th grades)
Friday, Sept. 14 from 7:00-10:00pm in 'The Place' at Christ UMC

Wear your favorite sports/team/school jersey or shirt! Contact Donna Bergsten at youth@icumc.org if you have any questions.
BYF2TP means Brings Your Face 2 The Place!
"Disappointment with God - 
Three Questions No One Asks Aloud"
Sunday, Sept. 16 through Sunday, Nov. 4, 2018
9:45am in Room 122

"Disappointment with God" is the title of a Philip Yancey book. The subtitle is "Three Questions No One Asks Aloud". These questions are: Is God unfair? Is God silent? Is God hidden? These are questions that many people wonder about when life is challenging and we feel vulnerable. This class will use Yancey's book to generate discussion and will be led by Elaine and David Howlett. 
Please sign up at the Welcome Center. The books will be available for purchase for $13 each.
WOW! Kids (2nd - 5th grades)
Beginning Sunday, Sept. 16
5:00-7:00pm in Kids Zone

The WOW! Kids will be starting up again on Sunday, September 16th at 5:00pm. All kids in 2nd through 5th grades are invited to join us! For more information contact Carla Kincaid or Jennifer Rambo at children@icumc.org

OUR NEXT CHRIST UMC & HARVESTERS FOOD DROP 
is Thursday, September 20 from 2-5pm

We helped 241 families at the August food drop.

We can always use help from volunteers anytime between 12:30 & 6:00!

We could use extra volunteers between 5:00 to 6:00 or so on Food Drop days to help clean up, get leftover food onto the truck, and unload it at the Noland Road Community Services League cooler at Noland & Truman Rd. It goes pretty fast with extra hands helping out.
Volunteer at the Franciscan Mission
Monday, Sept. 24 beginning at 5:30pm

If you are interested in volunteering to help at the Franciscan Mission on Monday, Sept. 24, please contact Colleen Foudree at 816-478-8020.
6-Week Fall Bible Study
"Short Stories by Jesus" by Amy-Jill Levine
Twice each week on Mondays (beginning Oct. 1) at 7:00pm 
OR
Wednesdays (beginning Oct. 3) at 10:00am

This is a fresh look at eight parables. An expert on the first century life, Dr. Levine describes them as "the enigmatic parables of controversial Rabbi." This 6-week study will be led by Rev. Bob Hickman. If you are interested in this study or have any questions, contact Bob Hickman at bob.hickman@icumc.org.  
Parents of Third through Fifth Graders
Bible Sunday will be October 14, 2018

3rd Grade Bible Sunday will be on October 14th at both Sunday worship services. If your child is in 4th or 5th grade and has not received a Bible from the church, he or she is invited to participate in this service.
If you would like your child to receive a special Bible with his or her name inside the cover, please contact Kathy Vest at kathy.vest@icumc.org and let her know the name and spelling you would like inside and the service you plan to attend (either 8:35 or 10:55).
Grocery Bags Needed


We are needing plastic grocery size bags to be used to make sleeping mats for the homeless. Please bring any donations to the church for the Crochet & Knitting Group.
Reading Support for Students

We are excited to announce that Christ UMC is partnering with Glendale Elementary School in a reading support program. We are looking for volunteers to commit to one hour a week to listen to students read. Volunteers can pick a convenient hour anytime Monday through Friday between 9:30 - 11:30am or 1:00 - 3:00pm. 

Each volunteer will need to have a background check in order to work with students. We are hoping to begin this program in October. If you are interested or have any questions, contact Lyn Verstraete at 816-838-2575.
Community Services League Food Pantry is doing
Supper for September!
(We are looking for hamburger, chicken, and tuna boxed meals.)
 
\

We collected 201 items last week.

We can always use pancake mix, pancake syrup, and Jello.

The Community Services League food pantry at our location receives all food that is donated at the church each month.
A Book Club is Forming at Christ UMC
Thursday, September 27, 2018 at 10:00am OR 7:00pm in Room 124

The Book Club's first meeting will be held on Thursday, Sept. 27. You can join us at 10:00am OR 7:00pm to find out what this all about. Everyone is invited to attend.

Contact Nancy Cochran at 816-392-0046 if you have any questions prior to the meeting.
60th Wedding Anniversary Celebration
for Larry & Toni Wendelman
Sunday, Sept. 30 from 2:00-4:00pm in 'The Place' at Christ UMC

The family of Larry and Toni invite you to join them in celebrating the couple's 60th wedding anniversary and their 80th birthdays. A casual reception will be held between 2:00 and 4:00pm in 'The Place' at Christ United Methodist Church. 
No gifts please. A card shower is welcome so they may remember this special day.
Glendale Snack Pack Items


Donations for the Glendale Snack Packs are needed for the new school year. We accept all snack size packages, excluding anything that has peanuts and candy items. Please leave these at the church in the narthex. We use about 50 items per week for the snack packs and could also use some grocery bags (Walmart/Hy-Vee/Price Chopper size plastic bags).
Thank you for your donation.
Sermon Videos on YouTube and Our Church Website

Our Christ UMC YouTube channel is now live and our weekly sermons are available at  Sermon Videos Link . Sermon videos can also be found on our church website at www.icumc.org.  

Check it out on either site and be sure to share and subscribe! Click on the link below to be connected.
Christ UMC Group Trip to Israel

Plans continue to advance for the church's trip to the Holy Land next January. It's not too late to register or invite others, however the registration will become more expensive after September 30th. If you would like more information, contact Rick Hammett at rick522x@yahoo.com or Rev. Mike Costanzo at mike.costanzo@icumc.org
Christ United Methodist Church | 816-461-1101 | church.office@icumc.org | www.icumc.org
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