This Sunday, we begin a new summer sermon series, ”Family Reunion.” Traditionally, summer has been a time of family reunions. For some of us, family reunions are fun and fulfilling. For others of us, they are uncomfortable or even painful. We all have dysfunction in our families. We all have stories we’d rather not tell. In the stories of Genesis, we discover God’s chosen family had struggles, secrets, sibling rivalries, and even threats of murder. As we explore these rich and ancient stories, we see how God works through and in spite of family dysfunction to bring about God’s purposes for the world, and we find hope for God’s presence and movement in our own families.

Sunday is Trinity Sunday in the church calendar. A Sunday that celebrates God in three persons. The sermon is “God’s Perfect Family” and is based on Genesis 1:1-2:4a. In Genesis 1, we get a glimpse of the eternal Trinity: The Spirit sweeps across the water as God the Creator calls forth light. In John 1, we read “in the beginning was the Word” which became flesh in Jesus Christ. In the beginning was the Divine Family. The perfect family!
This past week has been a challenging week. The death of George Floyd, the growing evidence that Covid-19 has taken a greater toll on the African-American community, and other instances of systematic racism in this country has led people to protest in the streets. I am at a loss for words for what I am seeing and reading. Bishop Bob Farr of the Missouri Annual Conference wrote these words on Facebook. They express some of my thoughts:

“I am outraged. I hesitated posting what I really wanted to say yesterday because my blood was boiling.

The arrest of the white officer, seen pressing his knee to the neck of Mr. George Floyd, a black man who later died, does little to quiet my outrage. I am tired. I’m tired of the senseless killing of black people. But, I am not as weary as black people or, in a broader sense, as people of color, who have had to endure the aggression and violence that racism has produced for centuries at the hands of white people. I’m not as weary as my black brothers and sisters because I do have breath in my lungs. I have the ability to run down the street without concerns of being assaulted. I don’t have to tense up when I am pulled over by the police. I am not as weary because I have white privilege.

I have witnessed both explicit and implicit racism. I’ve been complicit in racism throughout my life. In the face of my outrage, I know that my faith calls me to get active and stay engaged even when it is hard. If the conversation around #blacklivesmatter and the news reporting creates a sense of discomfort, tension or uneasiness in you, I invite you to spend some time talking to Jesus about WHY it bothers you. Ask the Holy Spirit to guide your heart to a place of conviction so that we might create God’s kingdom on earth where all people – regardless of their skin color, ethnicity, religion, identity or sexuality – might flourish.

It is not the job of black people to explain the structures of white supremacy, white privilege, racism, police brutality or any of the other byproducts that advances the white standard as the "normative" view. This is white people’s work and our need to engage in this work is urgent. Lives depend on it.”

I need as your pastor to confess that I am implicit in the racism in this country. I am a child of white privilege. I can drive down the street without worrying whether or not I will be pulled over because of the color of my skin. I have had opportunities and chances that people of color can only dream about. Part of this is because my family profited from owning slaves. Yes, racism is America’s original sin. I have had to sit and spend some time with God confessing that sin. But that isn’t enough. Asking for forgiveness and doing nothing different is what Dietrich Bonhoeffer would call cheap grace.  

I can’t make the past right, but I can begin to make the present and the future right. I know what is happening right now in the this country is not the beloved community God desires. I encourage to explore some of the resources the United Methodist Women’s Division has to wrestle with this question; the General Board of Church and Society has resources to read and ponder. Bishop Farr recommends these two books to the clergy and laity of the Missouri Annual Conference: White Fragility by Robin Diangolo and How to Be An Antiracist by Ibram X. Kendi. Join me in reading these as we wrestle with our part in the racism that is present in America.
Children and Youth Ministries
  • Children, youth and families are invited to join Pastor Kelly every weekday morning at 10:00am for a devotional and activity. We will post the daily video on our website and FaceBook page, with a link to a YouTube Channel.

  • Youth are invited to join Pastor Kelly for a youth zoom meet-up every Thursday at 10:00am. Please contact Pastor Kelly to be included in the zoom youth meet up at kellyb@centraltolife.org.
Adult Ministries
Pastor Greg is hosting a zoom Bible study devotional and check in every Wednesday at 6 PM. Please contact Pastor Greg to be included on the zoom invite at gkennedy@centraltolife.org
Third Space Ministries
Pastor Kelly is providing a weekly 3rd space devotional every Monday morning. Please contact Pastor Kelly to receive this third space devotional at kellyb@centraltolife.org .
This ministry helps keep members in contact with each other by writing notes to
someone in the congregation. If you would like to receive a note from a member of the Circuit Writers or be part of this ministry, please contact Cindy at pwcin1963@gmail.com.
For more information about the ministries of Central United Methodist Church,
email info@centraltolife.org, call the church office at 243-7834
or check out our website at www.centraltolife.org
June 7, 2020 Order of Service

  • WELCOME AND CENTERING WORDS
No matter how dark the day or murky the clouds...let there be light; let there be light and grace.

  • PRELUDE.....“I Want Jesus to Walk with Me”.....Spiritual/Turrentine

  • CALL TO WORSHIP
In the beginning, God created the heavens
and the earth.
And God called this creation good.
God said, “let there be light.”
And God called this creation good.
God gave us the sun and the moon, and the stars up in the sky.
And God called this creation good.
God brought forth creatures
and beasts, birds and fish, living upon the earth.
And God called this creation good.
God created humankind in God’s very image, crowning us with blessing and glory.
And God called this creation good.
To the end of the age, God is creating still.
And God calls this creation good.

  • HYMN OF PRAISE       Holy, Holy, Holy  UMH, 64

  • OPENING PRAYER
The Lord be with you
And also you
Let us pray:
Creator God, your works are a wonder to behold. We thank you for the many gifts of your creation: for sun and moon, water and sky, stars in the heavens and creatures on the earth. We praise you for creating us as your special creation, made in your image. As we worship this day, open our hearts and minds to see ourselves as caretakers and stewards of this earth. Help us see where we may walk more gently and live more compassionately, that all of your earth might find in us your very image, nurturing and caring in all that we do.

  • SCRIPTURE READING: Genesis 1:1-2:4a

  • ANTHEM.....“Amazing Grace”.....Turner/Martin

  • SERMON “God’s Perfect Family”

  • ATHANASIAN CREED
Whosoever will be saved , before all things it is necessary that he hold the Catholic Faith. Which Faith except everyone do keep whole and undefiled, without doubt he shall perish everlastingly.
And the Catholic Faith is this: That we worship one God in Trinity, and Trinity in Unity, neither confounding the Persons, nor dividing the Substance. For there is one Person of the Father, another of the Son, and another of the Holy Ghost. But the Godhead of the Father, of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, is all one, the Glory equal, the Majesty co-eternal. Such as the Father is, such is the Son, and such is the Holy Ghost.

  • CATALYTIC GENEROSITY

  • DOXOLOGY    “Praise God, From Whom all Blessings Flow”   94, UMH

  • PRAYER OF CONFESSION
God of grace and glory, help us to glorify you
in our actions upon this earth.
When we rule as if we were dictators and oppressors,
forgive our selfish ways and re-create us in your image. When we take from the earth and its creatures
as if they were our servants and slaves,
forgive our selfish ways and re-create us in your image.
Remind us that you have called us
to be your image of creative nurture,
that we may live into the image of your light, the likeness of your life and love. Amen.

  • ABSOLUTION
What are we that God is mindful of us? Even stars millions of miles away
seem to shine more brightly.
And yet, God is mindful of us.
God has crowned us with glory and honor,
shining through us with the light of God’s life and love

  • THE GREAT THANKSGIVING

  • THE LORDS PRAYER

  • RECEIVING COMMUNION

  • HYMN TO ENGAGE THE WORLD      Let There Be Peace on Earth 431,UMH

  • BLESSING

  • DISMISSAL

  • POSTLUDE.....“Faith, Hope, and the Blues”.....Ahrend/Monk
How to Give:
  • Mobil – Text #505.384.7589
  • Online – centraltolife.org
  • Mail a Check – 201 University Blvd, NE Albuquerque NM 87106
  • Bank Draft – Contact your bank directly 
  • Recurring E-Giving Through Employee or United Way
For more information about the ministries of Central United Methodist Church,
email info@centraltolife.org, call the church office at 243-7834
or check out our website at www.centraltolife.org
201 University Blvd NE, Albuquerque, NM 87106 • (505) 243-7834 • www.centraltolife.org