I hope this email finds you well as many of you are wrapping up another school year. We too are concluding our worship series on the 7 Next Words of Jesus this Sunday. Our 7
word (or phrase, as the case may be) is "Wait for the Gift!" and we'll be celebrating Pentecost together.
Pentecost comes from the Greek word for the fiftieth day after Easter. It is the day when the church celebrates the coming of the Holy Spirit on the apostles and all the people gathered together in Jerusalem. Pentecost marks the end of the resurrection appearances of Jesus and the beginning of the church. Thus, it is often called the birthday of the church. The color for Pentecost is red, a color of celebration and a color also symbolizing fire ("Divided tongues, as of fire, appeared among them, and a tongue rested on each of them" Acts 2.3.)
The coming of the Holy Spirit empowers the church to be a witness boldly and publicly to the good news of Christ. Trinity is a powerful witness in a couple of very particular ways this week. First of all, on Sunday evening at 6:00 p.m., you're invited to come to Faith Mission, Trinity's outreach mission, and celebrate Pentecost with a diverse community including preacher, Rev. Mary Mitchell and the choir from Bartley Temple United Methodist Church. Ward Simonton and the leadership team of Faith Mission are like leaven with a steady and increasing witness in that community.
Trinity is also hosting Vacation Bible School this week. We have almost 300 kids registered and 150 adult and youth volunteer servants. This is a wonderful opportunity for children and their families to be encouraged to "Seek peace and go after it!" at Hero Central. What a prophetic word that is so needed in our community and world right now!
Finally, the Florida Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church begins Wednesday, June 7 in Orlando, FL. Clergy and laity from more than 600 churches across Florida will come together for a time of prayer, learning, holy conferencing and decision-making. All four of Trinity's clergy, Aaron, Lenora, Steve and I will be there, as well as four lay members of the Conference, Austin Council, Nan Gordon, Roger Haines, and Jahala Sterling. Carmen Nelson will also attend in her role with the Conference Archives.
I invite you as a congregation to be in prayer this week for Faith Mission and our Sunday evening Pentecost, for Trinity's Vacation Bible School reaching children and their families, and for the Florida United Methodist Church as we gather for Annual Conference. Your prayers for these gatherings this week will undergird the Church as we seek to be a bold and prophetic witness to our community.
Grace and Peace,