Friday, January 24, 2020
This Week at Centenary

Sunday, January 26, 2020
Third Sunday after the Epiphany

8:40 a.m.       Early Service

  10:00 a.m.       Sunday School

         11:00 a.m.       Traditional Worship

Rev. Drew Willson  will be preaching this Sunday 
and his sermon is entitled  A Call Beyond Unity.
Dear Centenary Family,

This has been quite a week at Centenary! 

T his week, we hosted an interfaith Martin Luther King Celebration on Monday. We had the opportunity to be reminded of Martin Luther King's vision of a "beloved community" characterized by love, peace, and justice for all people. We had the opportunity to connect with leaders of other congregations, synagogues, and mosques and lift up our common convictions that God's will for humanity is to live in relationships of love and justice. Rev. Drew Willson led the planning of an interfaith worship service that focused on readings from Dr. King's works, times of reflection and prayer, and music that helped us center our attention on God's presence among us.

On Wednesday we hosted the Virginia Interfaith Center for Public Policy's annual Day for All People. Over 300 people from many religious traditions and from all over our commonwealth gathered at Centenary. They received guidance on how to talk respectfully with legislators about key issues like paid sick days, minimum wage, environmental justice, drivers licenses for all and reform of predatory lending.

On Thursday, we hosted Homeward's Point in Time Count. During this event, service providers try to ascertain the needs of homeless people and ascertain how many people are homeless in our community. Wednesday night and early Thursday morning, Homeward staff and volunteers, including our social work intern, Jessica Mason, were out in the cold, talking with our homeless neighbors. Thursday morning, homeless friends came to Centenary where they could talk to service providers about resources, eat lunch, and even get a haircut! Governor Northam came to visit that morning. He spoke to Homeward staff and other service providers and spoke with our homeless friends.

The Governor later stated: "Housing is the foundation for building vibrant communities and creating equal access to economic opportunity across our Commonwealth. Every time I meet with housing service providers and individuals who have overcome homelessness, I am given hope that with the right investments, we can effectively address homelessness, reduce housing instability, and provide more Virginians with safe and affordable living options."

Our purpose at Centenary is "to change the world through love." Our presence in downtown Richmond gives us many opportunities to work with others who seek to do similar things.

Our facility, as Dan Corcoran reminded us during a recent budget presentation, is one of our largest expenses. But it gives us a home base for this kind of ministry and mission to our city, not to mention sacred space for worship, prayer, learning, and fellowship. And this week could not have been possible without the hard work and leadership of our Facilities Manager, Al Richardson. If you see Al, thank him for all he does. And thank Ron Towers our sexton, and Heidi Kara, a member of our church and faithful volunteer, who along with other members of Al's team, make such ministry possible.

This week, with its challenges, busyness, and joys certainly makes me reflect on a text that is important to many of us here at Centenary: " He has told you, O mortal, what is good;   and what does the Lord require of you ; but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?" (Micah 6:8)

We are a church in action! But that action has to be sustained by continually returning to the source of our inspiration, motivation, and power. We need to continue to deepen our prayer lives, grow in our understanding of Scripture, and continually wrestle together with the meaning of the ancient message of Jesus for the 21st century. We all need to continually seek a living awareness of God's presence in us and an openness to God's call to us. To that end, I look forward to seeing you in worship Sunday!

Here is a sampling of some  of the way's Centenary's witness was communicated  in the news!

Martin Luther King Service of Prayer and Reflection at Centenary

Day For All People

Homeward Point in Time Count at Centenary

Join us for a study of this book by
Mark Achtemeier, 
The Bible's Yes to Same Sex Marriage:  
An Evangelical's Change of Heart

Sessions will be led by Rev. Dr. Pat Shipley 
and held at 10 A.M. The last two Sundays are 
January 26, and February 2. 

The class will convene in the 
Anchor Classroom  on the 2nd floor.

In the early 2000's, Mark Achtemeier embarked on a personal journey with the Bible that led him from being a conservative, evangelical opponent of gay rights to an outspoken activist for gay marriage and a fully inclusive church. In  The Bible's Yes to Same - Sex Marriage , Achtemeier shares what led to his change of heart: the problems with excluding groups of people and the insights into the Bible's message that led him to recognize the fullness of God's love and support for LGBT persons. Readers will discover how reading snippets of Scripture out of context has led to false and misleading interpretations of the Bible's message for gay people. Achtemeier shows how a careful reading of the whole Scripture reveals God's good news about love, marriage, and sexuality for gay and straight people alike.

This new edition includes a study guide and a new introduction from the author that reflects on the U.S. Supreme Court ruling and changes within the church. Perfect for groups or self-reflection, the study guide directs readers over four sessions to explore both Achtemeier's book and the Bible.

You can purchase your copy from Amazon or your favorite bookseller.

Fridays - 6:30 - 7:45 p.m.
 Coffee Theology at Urban Farmhouse in Scott's Addition. 
All ages are welcome to join us for coffee and faith conversation. 

Sunday, January 26
Sunday Fun Day at Tang & Biscuit. 
See details below.
(Our regularly scheduled Pub Theology on the fourth Sunday of the month is thus canceled.)
Altar Flowers for 2020

As we start 2020, we will be compiling a new Altar Flowers Calendar.  We are blessed with many folks who support our Altar Flower ministry by remembering loved ones each week, and we are always open to new folks who would like to honor someone with flowers. First Sundays cost $50 (2 arrangements are needed for Communion Sundays) & other Sundays are $25.  This year there are 4 months that have 5 Sundays - March, May, August & November, so the calendar changes each year as these 5th Sundays come and go! If you would like to sponsor flowers on a particular Sunday, please let me know & I will do my best to arrange for it.  Thanks for your continued support of this ministry! Sharon Steele, Altar Flowers Chair. 804-912-2549.

The Reach Team has enjoyed hosting our pop up coffee and cider bar, WAKE UP, on Sunday mornings.  We have been thrilled by the number of guests that have stopped to chat before and after the service.  It is great to see friendships grow with our current members too!  WAKE UP will be on holiday the rest of January.  Look for us again in February! 

Would you like to host WAKE UP?  We are looking to add people to our WAKE UP Barista team.  Tasks include making coffee, warming cider and providing a small treat for guests.  Find a friend and partner up!  Please contact Anne Kraft ( or any of our other Reach Team members (Lynnette Bailey, Mann Brown, Nathan Grubb, Pencye Bailey, Rachel Bates, Steve Kraft, Susan Thomas, or Reid Ashe) to learn more.


R.B. Bennington

Joanne Crick Berft - daughter of Phil & AJ Crick, asking for prayer for  

                                   recent health issues

Betty Brown Bill Glaze, Betty's brother-in-law has been diagnosed with 

                        pancreatic cancer

The Family of Jenny Bush - friend of Leah Hundley who recently lost 

                                                her battle with stage 4 melanoma

Ka Cheng friend of Vicki and Phyllis Stump diagnosed with breast 


Shannon Conway - requests prayer for the Charles Sherman, Peter 

                                 Oxborrow, Leon Beale and family

Riley Davin - Niece of Vic and Nancy

Serena Durst

Les & Mary Dobbs

Gavin - friend of Vic and Nancy Grand facing kidney transplant

Jane Grand has been moved to a skilled nursing facility and has leveled 

                       in her recovery 

Jeff Hatch

Kathy Henn - surgery January 15 - sister of Maggie King

Leah and Bob Hundley

Clyde Hundley recovering after recent hospitalization

Lucille Hunt - at Morningside at Bellegrade

Justin Laman - nephew of Lucy Hottle, a young father who has cancer

Vincente Lopez - nephew of Heidi Kara, U.S. Army Infantry, deploying

                             to Egypt

Megan Mattax - a friend of Miranda Clayton, pregnant and diagnosed  

                           with breast cancer

Patti Oman - health concerns - friend of Beth Hensley

Phyllis Stump - in rehab at Sheltering Arms, St. Francis

Wendy Tisdale - family friend of Agatha and Christina Kidd, diagnosed 

                              with stage 4 lung cancer

Bernice Walter- medical issues

Centenary United Methodist Church | (804) 648-8319 | 
Visit Us: 411 E. Grace St., Richmond, VA 23219