The News of Zion
Love God
Love People
~Luke 10:27
October 15, 2020
Musings ~ Discipleship or Membership
     Two weeks ago, I started a series of articles to ask some questions about what we are doing as a church in both the local congregation and in the greater church beyond. I presented the idea that as a church, we are failing at the mission of the church and in all honesty, I think that has to do with paradigm shifts that have happened through the  centuries that have drawn us away from the original mission and intent of the church. I posed three questions that I hope might help us to consider a different perspective for looking at what it means to embrace a form of discipleship which will help us become and grow into a better expression of what I see as Jesus’ vision for the Church.
The second question was how do we move from making church members to making disciples?  I believe it has to do with focus, more specifically, with what is important to us. For years, the model has been a program model. Create   programs like Sunday school, small groups, youth groups, children’s ministry. These are not bad in and of themselves and for that matter, they can be excellent tools for the real goal. But instead of being a means to the end they have  become the end. Having the successful program (i.e. one that is full of people who show up week in and week out) has become the goal instead of what the program should create (i.e. people changing their hearts and lives to align with the person and mission of Jesus). That is not to say some people haven’t been changed but the program goal is often maintaining the program not creating the disciple.
What we are creating is classroom learners who know some things but not disciples, who take the knowledge out of the classroom to find and create more disciples. Very few, if any, church members take on disciples to teach and nurture. Most spend their lives taking turns teaching each the same things over and over with little if no challenge to the status quo.
For us to have an impact on the world again, leaders and churches must make discipleship—the learning and following of the Way of Jesus that leads to teaching others to do so—the priority rather than the number of church members or people present. That is, we must make change and consistent growth and maturity as followers of the Way the cornerstone of our efforts. Rather than rely on Sunday school as the principle teacher for discipleship, we need to treat it as a place to encourage and pray with one another. In my opinion, Sunday school is too short a time (30 minutes by the time you finish pleasantries and what not) to really delve into weighty matters and often is repetitive when it comes to material.
Discipleship happens when we make discipling relationships a priority. A discipling relationship is one where a person invests themselves in following the Way of Jesus by learning as a disciple from an established disciple and then finds another person or a few people to share that knowledge with. 
It becomes a sharing of Way of Life where you are not sharing book knowledge but life knowledge that has been passed down from teacher to disciple in a generational fashion. This requires the teacher in the relationship to be continuously being taught by their teacher as well as the guidance of the Holy Spirit.
This is a shift away from the current paradigm, which many have called churchitainment, where church exists for what the person can get out of it and not what they put into it. This mindset is why it is so easy for people to move from congregation to congregation. The shift will require leaders and churches to embrace different, and oddly enough,      ancient ideas for the sake of discipleship. These methods focus on and develop the ideas of discipleship by an ancient Greco-Roman teacher-student model where a person who is disciple to the master/teacher/rabbi (heard any of the words before) teaches that Way of Life to another small group of a few students. Jesus tells his original band of disciples,

I will ask the Father, and he will send another Companion, who will be with you forever. This Companion is the Spirit of Truth… I have spoken these things to you while I am with you. The Companion, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you everything and will remind you of everything I told you. – John 14:16-17, 25-26

The Jesus model says, Jesus has taught the disciples, when he is gone, they will rely on the Holy Spirit to continue teaching the things Jesus taught to their own disciples. There were no large Sunday schools, no programs, no denominations. Just a teacher/student who is teaching a group of students/future teachers. This is the model, the way to build the Kingdom of God, which the real goal of the Jesus Way of Life.
Pastor Michael
As we continue to gather for worship together, just a few reminders....

This Sunday, October 18, we will continue to enter via the covered walkway that leads into the family life center (closest to the sanctuary). The walkway will be marked by at least six-foot intervals to keep people separated as we enter. Once inside, there will be more markers. Once inside the gym, an usher will direct you to chairs that will be at least six feet from any other chairs. Please stay in these areas during the service. Please do not hug, shake hands, or make physical contact with others gathering, for their safety and yours. When the service is over, we will file out one area at a time, going out the doors closest to the area where the buses are parked. Masks will continue to be available for folks to wear during the service. There will be an additional message from Pastor Michael and the COVID Response team for instruction for returning to worship in the sanctuary on Sunday, October 25th! Our youth and children will also be offered worship opportunities beginning October 25th!
You are invited to a drive through Baby Shower in honor of Treston and Kayla Yost Strait THIS Sunday, October 18 from 2-3 pm. It will be held under the bus drop off at the Thompson Family Life Center. Please stay in your car
and just drive through, Treston and Kayla will greet you! 
Parents to be are requesting diapers of all sizes and wipes to
stock up for their baby boy!!
Wednesday, October 28 from 5:30-7:-00 pm
Join us and bring a friend for an amazing Scavenger Hunt and socially distanced Truck or Treat!!! We are planning for some Fall fun, a meaningful message and there might even be a pumpkin waiting for you!!!  We hope to see you then!!!!
Our Annual Bazaar to benefit Missions will be held on Saturday, November 7 from 8am-12pm. The bazaar will be a bit different this year…there will be crafts, canned goods and baked goods but on a much smaller scale. We also hope to have vendors available but the number will also need to be limited so that we will be able to socially
distance. Everyone coming in will need to wear masks which will be available at the door. We also reserve the right to limit numbers in the facility. There will not be
biscuits and drinks served for breakfast however, there will be soup available for purchase by the quart TO GO but quantities will be limited so come early to get yours!!. We invite you to come out and enjoy shopping with us!! For our crafters, we understand this is late notice but If you have completed any crafts for the bazaar, we will greatly appreciate your donations!!! Donations of baked goods for the event would also be greatly appreciated as well. We realize that this is very late notice however, we only recently received approval from the Administrative Board and the COVID Response group to move forward with a smaller event. Please remember that all the proceeds go to help those in need!!! As soon as a list of our vendors is
available, we will advertise this.     
Be a light in the Darkness
Please remember to call and check on your church family and friends during these troubling times. Many of our members are unsure or afraid of returning to worship  together and have also lost the connection of Sunday school. A call or a card can make a world of difference to those who are struggling with fear, loneliness, and isolation. 
Pastor Michael continues to offer morning prayer and Bible study. Join us each morning at 7:00 AM for Prayer and meditation. Join us, also on Thursdays at 12:00 Noon for Bible Study. Pastor Michael is hosting these from our Facebook page. If you are unable to log in LIVE, these offerings remain available for viewing after on our website and FB page.
While the church office remains closed, you are encouraged to reach out if you have a need or know of a need. You may call Pastor Michael at 1-859-475-8800, call the church office, 285-3864 and leave a message, call Missy at 804-2434 or email or; these emails are being monitored daily. The answering machine will also be checked daily. During these times, we ask everyone to pray together for each other, our church family, our community, our country, and our world. May God be with us all.
Please remember these in prayer:
Nancy Ackerman
Angela Bailey
Francis Bell
Phillip Bell
Rick Black
Marion Boswell
Chance Bowers
Carol Boyles
Randy Boyles
Caleb Catoe
Sue Catoe
Carol Cauthen
Brandy Champion
Ann Chappell
Linda Coker
Sandra Cope
Bill Dingler
Sophia Dixon
Angie Dobson
Heather Elder
John Elder
Ashley Fort
Betsy Gardner
Mike Gay
Judy Goodnight
Travis Gordon
T.R. Grier
Catherine Hammond
JoAnn Hinson
Rev. Shelly Holder
Kevan Horton
Eric Hough
Libby Hunter
Melinda Hunter
Rick Joyner
Henry Ray Knight
Mary Jane McAteer
Bill McCorkle
Kevin McCorkle
Ann McManus
Tammy McMillian
Debbie McWaters
Marie Moree
Rusty Mosier
Bell Perry
Betty Jo Phillips
Ann Powers
Vicky Pickett
Ann Reed
Kathleen Robinson
Mayme Jo Robinson
John Rollings
Virginia Rollings
Nancy Rushing
Bonnie Sears
Eva Small
Greg Smith
JoAnne Smith
Billy Sowell
Robbie Stepp
Matthew Sweatt
Jim Thomas
Mike Vick
Pat Vick
Myrtle Walker
Ellen Walters
David Woodruff
Kim Yost
Our President and Troops
Those affected by the COVID-19 Virus
Even as we offer in-person worship, our services will still be made available online on our Facebook page. Log in to our Zion United Methodist Church Facebook page this Sunday for our service if you are unable to make it to church!! The service will also be available on our website at
Current Upper Room Daily Devotionals are available for pick up at the church! We will place some of these on the table as you enter the life center and some in the plastic communication box outside of the life center doors where the buses are for those who do not have access to the church for you to pick up. There are large and regular print copies available.
While our United Methodist Women will not be meeting for now, our thoughts and prayers remain with each one of you and with all in need during these trying times! If you know of a need that our women can help with, please contact an officer in the women’s group so that we can try and meet any needs! Executive officers are Sharon Haile, Darlene Hallman, Terry Robinson, Missy Snipes, Dianne Sweatt, and Mary Knight.
October 15: Janie Brooks
October 18: Brooke Collins
October 19: Chris Steen
October 20: Wade McAteer, Mr. and Mrs. Brad Bridges
October 20: Ray Vincent, Renee Finley
October 21: Emma Massey, Mr. and Mrs. Jeff Davis
October 22: Billy Sweatt, Charles McAteer, Mr. and Mrs. Shawn Thomas
October 23: Margie Vincent, Libby Morris, Carmen Faile, Mr. and Mrs. Lex Ford
Our United Methodist Men's third Sunday meeting and our weekly Saturday Bible Study meetings have been suspended until the stay at home order has been lifted and we are told that we can begin to gather again.
The members of Zion ARE CONTINUING
to support the ministry and outreach
of the church!!!
Thank you to each one of you who have adjusted to this change in our lives and have continued to support the ministry and outreach of Zion UMC and for your continued presence at online worship!!! You can continue to give online through the website, by clicking on the donate tab. You do not need to have a PayPal account to use this option, simply click on the donate button and follow the prompts, you can text your giving to 803-525-1834 and follow the secure link, or you may give by mailing your tithes to the church at 1665 Zion Road, Lancaster, SC, 29720. If you have misgivings about online donations or mailing your donations, a locking mailbox has been installed under the covered carport where the buses are. You may place your contributions in the box and it will be checked daily.
Together we can move forward.
Together we can continue and make a difference!
Special Gifts to Zion Church
In Honor of:
Carol Cauthen by Wanda Murphy
In loving honor and blessings to Carol Cauthen by Max and Myra Funderburk
Special Gifts to Building Fund
In Honor of:
Dianne Thomas by Frances Parris
Marie Moree by Carolyn Massey
Special Gifts to Children’s Ministry
In Honor of:
Ava Marie Dobson on her 1st birthday Love, Mommy,
Daddy, and Wyatt

The Record Speaks....
October 11, 2020
Present for Worship: 36
Needed each week for the General Fund $4,360
Received for General Fund $2,097
Received for Building Fund $110
Received for Children's Ministry Fund $20

"...because of this the Lord your God will bless you in all your work and in everything you put your hand to."
Deuteronomy 15:10,,
803-285-3864 -
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