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people helping people find fullness in Christ worship • connect • grow • serve

How do we worship?


In his book, United Methodist Questions, United Methodist Answers, F. Belton Joyner Jr. asks the question, “How do United Methodists worship?,” and then proceeds to answer it by saying (and I paraphrase) – in many different ways! Some congregations clap, sing, and sway, while others are more reserved and follow traditional patterns of worship. Some celebrate Holy Communion every Sunday and others observe a monthly or quarterly schedule. The good news is that all across the spectrum of patterns and styles, God is worshipped, God is present, God’s Word is heard, and lives are changed! Still, United Methodists have what’s called “The Basic Pattern of Worship.” Next time you arrive early on Sunday morning and have a few minutes before the service begins, pick up a Hymnal and turn to page 2. There you’ll discover that worship is about “movement,” “growth,” “change,” and “being changed.” First we “enter” and come together in the Lord’s name. Then we hear God’s Word and “respond” in ways appropriate to what we’ve heard. Next we express our “gratitude” for having received God’s Word and the transformation that God has brought about in our lives, and finally we are “sent out in ministry.” This pattern of movement repeats every 7 days and has everything to do with the meaning of “Sabbath.” We leave the busy-ness and turmoil of the world to enter God’s presence for a while, where we are fed and nurtured and loved by God, and equipped to return to that same hectic world with precisely what we need to witness to Christ and to share God’s love with those in need of it. So regular worship attendance is important, necessary, vital, critical, needed – not just for personal transformation, but for the transformation of the whole world! There are three “General Rules” in Methodism that have been followed by the societies since the beginning of the movement. They are: 1) do no harm; 2) do good; and 3) attend upon all the ordinances of God. “Public worship of God” is the first thing Wesley listed under the third rule. He expected the members of the societies to account for their worship attendance. In other words if they missed a Sunday, they’d have to stand and share the reason for their absence the next time worship was held. Absences for illness or death in the family were understood, but in every other case, Wesley had this to say: ”. . .let it be known unto them who watch over that soul as they who must give an account. . .we will admonish him of the error of his ways. . .we will bear with him for a season. . .but then, if he repent not, he hath no more place among us.” Ouch! I once pastored a former Evangelical United Brethren Church that included in every Sunday’s bulletin a list of absentees from the previous week as well as a list of contributions made by those who were present, including this preacher’s contribution. This practice probably wouldn’t be very well received today – in any United Methodist Church! Yet God knows! God knows when we’ve made the effort to join with our brothers and sisters of all ages at Christ Church to be the one body Christ calls us to be. And God knows when we are present on Sunday reconnecting with others in our church family and reaching out to those we don’t know as well in order to grow closer to them. God knows the level of our commitment and whether or not we’re truly giving ourselves to worship in ways that open our hearts to God’s Holy Spirit. Without worship, God knows we will not be equipped to be the hands and feet of Christ in the world. It’s not that God needs glory, but that God desires we receive the gifts our glorification of God provides, for God loves us more than we can imagine and is always ready to bless us. Thanks be to God. Amen.

We will be publishing periodic articles on our United Methodist heritage and beliefs. If you have a topic you would like addressed, please send your requests to Karen LaMotta at


Christ United Methodist Church


At Christ Church we want people to find life and be filled in worship. Our Vision and Planning Team decided it was primarily through worship that people entered into the life of this church. It’s in worship that we remember what we value: “one body, connected community, making disciples, and compassionate caring.” It’s in worship that we deepen our relationship with God, with Christ, and with each other. It’s in worship that we receive the spiritual nurturing we need to have an impact on the world. Without worship we cannot find fullness in Christ or have what it takes to help others find it. We’re always called to stretch ourselves and go deeper so we can help others “connect.” Worship does that for us. So, how do we get people to worship? In my lifetime, including twenty-five years as a clergyperson, the answer to this question has remained the same – “invite them!” A couple of years ago several of us on staff attended a George Barna (church growth) seminar called “Empty Pews.” Barna had done his homework. He knew the demographics of our area. And he let us know that people here stay away from church because they no longer receive any value from it, or because they haven’t found something that “appeals” to them, or because they have felt rejected by the church at some point in their lives. Without hesitation, though, he said,

unchurched people will come to church when a friend invites them. So, how long has it been since you invited someone to worship? As we on staff debriefed our experience at Barna’s seminar, we settled on some priorities. Thankfully, they’ve stayed on our front burners. First of all, we realized we needed to create an “invitational culture” in which everyone’s on board with offering personal invitations to worship. People invite people to something they’re excited about. Second, we knew we needed to determine our vision. We spent most of 2010 and the first part of this year refining that vision which is now pulled together in a document called “Christ Church Vision Frame.” Third, it was evident we needed to nurture our Sunday School classes, HomeGroups, and other small groups, and help them be more hospitable. Finally we agreed we needed to plan events that would be worth inviting others to attend. The bottom line in all these priorities was the conviction we felt to be authentic, genuine, and caring. After all, people go to a church to see how the people inside the church treat each other. As our Vision and Planning consultant, Will Mancini, taught us, programs will not bring in the unchurched but valued, fulfilled, growing, excited people who tell their friends about their experience at church will! So I want to strongly encourage you to make it your practice to invite someone to worship. The timing couldn’t be better! We have a new Senior Pastor coming! Advent, Christmas Eve, and Epiphany are just around the corner! And 2012 is already promising to be a great year as we complete our Mission: Possible campaign and continue to live into our Vision Frame. My prayer is that you’re feeling valued and fulfilled, and that you’re growing enough, and are excited enough, to want to invite your friends to worship. Give it a try! You’ll be blessed and so will all the rest of us.

people helping people find fullness in Christ worship • connect • grow • serve


When Dr. Marcia McFee led her worship workshop here at Christ Church this past June, she shared her understanding of our mission statement: “people helping people find fullness in Christ.” To her, “finding fullness” meant “meeting God in the present.” In order to help people meet God in worship, she said, worship planners are called to “create worship with deep soul.” Such “deep soul” empowers everyone to utilize their inherent creativity and diversity to worship God fully and be drawn more closely to Jesus Christ. After all, in the moment, in the journey that is a worship service, worship is the “work” of all the people, not just the planners.



Why do we worship together on Sunday? “The music is so good; I just can’t miss a Sunday.” “The pastor is really nice, and he always preaches in appropriate clothes.” “I see plenty of my friends, and we can always get out in time to beat the Baptists to lunch.” Yep, I have heard them all. For some, an excuse not to worship corporately is a classic thing. I have friends who defend the privacy of their relationship with God and proclaim that as long as they are in that personal relationship they don’t need church on Sunday. Others feel that Little League, All-star Baseball, or soccer tournaments are too important to miss. Unfortunately, that means putting worship in the back seat. Worship is done in three ways. We worship on our own through our prayer time, study time, and as a body. Prayer time is a personal venture and is often accomplished with no one to witness us. Study time can be a combination of personal venture and group study. However, worshiping together as a body is only done as a congregation in a group setting. Viewing the Kingdom community as a complete body is very helpful for understanding the importance of corporate worship. I had my gall bladder out at a relatively early age. This made me acutely aware of the role it played in my body. We take this organ for granted every day of our life. However, without it I have to alter my diet and my daily habits. My body is no longer complete. The body can, and will, function without critical parts. However, it will become broken. In today’s society, an incomplete body of Christ is insufficient to deal with the pressures of everyday life on the church. We witness this here in reduced participation, reduced volunteerism, reduced commitment levels, etc. Our congregation is missing body parts! Corporate worship serves to bring those parts together and equip them for serving the greater Kingdom. Remember, He does not call the equipped, but He equips the called. I heard it put this way, “Not worshiping as a complete body forfeits the power of the corporate entity.” In sports, the worst thing to do is forfeit a game. Why are we so willing to forfeit our power when it suits our lives? Are we not taking the responsibility we have to maintain the body of Christ and setting it aside with the rest of our to-dos that are not taking priority today? Hey, Jesus, how does that back seat feel? Every week we evaluate attendance, and watch the decline. I wonder if everyone is aware of the impact it has on the ministry worked through Christ Church. We are the body! Everyone has a part to play! Don’t let the understudies have to step in, you might find they aren’t there, either…


Christ United Methodist Church



A few years ago, in another town, at another church, the Damons had a dream about worship. My husband John and I had a vision of a casual worship experience where people would connect and share life together. We talked, we planned, we gathered support, but sadly, it was a dream that went unfulfilled at that church. Fast forward to 2008 when we relocated to this area, and I began working at Christ Church. We learned of plans for adding an additional worship service and were asked to serve on the planning team. It soon became clear that the dream God had laid on our hearts years ago just might be coming to fruition with this additional service. It was an exciting time with lots of prayer, meetings, and e-mails (there had to be hundreds of e-mails on what to name the service alone). It all came together in God’s timing, and the hub was born. Fast forward to 2011, and the hub has just celebrated our two year anniversary. In the Gym at 11 am on Sundays, you will experience genuine and passionate worship. We receive God’s grace through weekly communion. We are a place “where everybody knows your name” and take time to have Christian fellowship as part of our worship. We hear Christ-centered messages where we are challenged to become more like Him. We are a family—join us sometime!

people helping people find fullness in Christ worship • connect • grow • serve


It’s strange how I need coffee to get going six mornings a week, but wake up so energized on Sundays that I can go without my dose of caffeine. I live for Sundays at the hub! It is our chance to experience our Godinspired dream for worship.



As I think about worship in the month of November, I realize that by the end of the month we will have welcomed our new Senior Pastor and his family, celebrated All Saints Sunday and remembered those loved ones who have joined the Church Triumphant, celebrated the culmination of our stewardship campaign and the offering of our gifts and our talents to be used to serve God here in our church and in the world, spent time being grateful together for the season of Thanksgiving, prepared our Sanctuary and our hearts for the season of Advent at our Hanging of the Greens service, and begun the season of Advent. For each of these various occasions, the music will be an important part of our worship, as it is whenever we gather. How good it is, to join with other voices in song to celebrate the mighty acts of God…….

to remember our past

to reaffirm our faith

to rejoice in our future

to mourn those who are no longer with us

to dedicate ourselves to Christ in service

to give thanks for the many blessings we have received

to prepare for the coming of Christ anew in our hearts and our lives

and in the lives of all those who will worship with us.

There are times when the power and beauty of song makes us tremble, and there are times it seems we can hardly endure the joy of a song heartily sung or the pain of a song offered in loving remembrance of one no longer present with us. There are many times when the beauty of a piece of music offered on the organ or piano or another instrument through the artful offering of the musician touches us in a way that transcends the spoken word, and we are lifted to a different place, and our souls offer a silent but heartfelt “Amen.” This we do know, when we come into God’s presence with a song, we are reminded in a mighty way of how glorious and powerful a gift we share. Psalm 100:1-2 “Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth. Worship the Lord with gladness. Come into his presence with singing.” We find evidence in the Old Testament of the important role that music played in worship, with references to musical instruments (Ps. 150) and singing and dancing (Ps. 149:3), praising with lifted hands (Ps. 63:4) and clapping hands (Ps. 47:1). There is evidence of choirs and their purpose and functionality. In I Chronicles 16:7-38 King David instructed a large group of Levites to serve as singers and instrumentalists in a celebration and act of worship as a response to the return of the Ark of the Covenant. God’s presence arrives; let the choir sing!


Christ United Methodist Church

I’m reminded of some words I read of Martin Luther and I share them with you. Martin Luther said: I wish to see all arts principally music in the service of Him who gave and created them. Music is a fair and glorious gift of God. I would not for the world forego my humble share of music. Singers are never sorrowful, but are merry and smile through their troubles in song. Music makes people kinder, gentler, more staid and reasonable.

I am strongly persuaded that after theology there is

no art that can be placed on a

level with music; for besides

theology, music is the

only art capable of affording peace

and joy of the heart.

The devil flees before the sound of music almost as much as before the Word of God.

With words such as these, is it any wonder that music is such a vital part of our worship, no matter what style of worship that happens to be... contemporary, traditional, emerging, contemplative? I invite any of you who would like to be a part of our choir, to come and sing with us as we lead in worship each Sunday. We are currently preparing music for our Advent and Christmas Season and would welcome new members.

people helping people find fullness in Christ worship • connect • grow • serve


For each of you in the congregation, I trust that as you “come into his presence with singing” you will recall John Wesley’s Directions for singing, (found in the front of your hymnal on page vii). Direction number IV reminds us to “Sing lustily and with a good courage. Beware of singing as if you were half dead, or half asleep; but lift up your voice with strength. Be no more afraid of your voice now, nor more ashamed of its being heard, than when you sung the songs of Satan.” And his seventh direction, “Above all sing spiritually. Have an eye to God in every word you sing. Aim at pleasing him more than yourself, or any other creature...”

SERVE SUNDAY FIRST Each of us has been given specific spiritual gifts as God’s people to use in service to others as faithful stewards of God’s grace. Serving on Sunday is a priority at Christ Church, and there are many opportunities to use your gifts to support worship and to serve others on Sunday morning. Below is just a partial sampling of ways you can help on Sundays. Please contact Stacey Fleck at and say “I am ready to serve on Sunday!” Just imagine what Sundays at Christ Church will be as we all continue to help. *Pray for our Pastors and Sunday worship services *Invite others *Arrive early & offer to help as needed *Stay late & help ushers or others in clean up *Greet *Help with refreshments and hospitality *Intentionally sit with those you may not know and get to know them *Connect with newcomers *Serve as an usher *Serve as a lay reader *Serve as an Altar Prayer Partner *Help prepare communion

When: Wednesday November 30th 6 pm Where : CUMC Gymnasium Tickets $ 20 -$10 children 12 & under

*Serve communion *Help with audio or visuals during the service *Teach Sunday School for children, youth or adults *Assist in Children’s Ministries *Assist in Youth Ministries *Help at the hub *Provide transportation for youth or older adults that may not otherwise be able to attend

For ticket information call Diane Sindelar 281281-491491-3569 Childcare available by reservation 281-690- 4784

*Serve at the front receptionist desk or Welcome Center *Assist at Christ Corner Bookstore *Serve as host in the parking lot *Sing in the choir *Help with the New Member Class

There are, of course, many impactful ways to serve beyond Sunday, and we would love to help you discover more about our Missions Ministries and other Serve opportunities. Ask—we are here to help.


Christ United Methodist Church


It will be an evening of dinner, desserts, fellowship, shopping, and great entertainment. This is an event that can be enjoyed by the whole family. Tickets are $20 for adults and $10 for children 12 and under. Reservations can be made for small children who may not be ready for this event by contacting Kim Ripley at 281.980.6888, x4784 (pizza will be provided for these kids.) Tickets are on sale now through November 27 in the Ministry Center. If you would like to decorate a table and/or buy tickets, please contact Diane Sindelar at 281.491.3569.

 presented by

The Festival Choir and Orchestra at Christ United Methodist Church Lahonda Sharp. Conductor Beth McConnell, Organist Also featuring The Children’s Choirs Women’s Choir Ballet Grace Dancers Pre-concert music at 5:30 - Sacred Harp Ensemble & Handbell Choirs Free to the public  Reception following

December 11, 2011 6 pm people helping people find fullness in Christ worship • connect • grow • serve


Childcare by reservation 281-690-4784

What is a United Methodist?


Drive anywhere in the United States of America, go to an African country, go to Mexico, go to Haiti and you will see it, the CROSS AND FLAME—the symbol of the United Methodist Church. Instantly, you recognize that you have found a United Methodist Church, and you know that you are welcomed and have a sense of belonging. You will be treated as a member.

If you are experiencing the grief of loss or suffering due to illness or brokenness, God is ready to bring healing, wholeness and salvation to you. This service of hope and healing is held in the Sanctuary at 7 o’clock the second Tuesday of every month. Our worship together will include prayer, music, Scripture, and a time of anointing and the laying on of hands for prayer. Childcare will be provided.

The following editorial is submitted by Mark Huffer, long-time Christ Church member and lay delegate to the Texas Annual Conference. He wrote it in response to a discussion of the Christ United Methodist Church logo at the recent Leadership Council meeting.

The CROSS AND FLAME stands for many things, but most importantly it stands for 2 things. The simple black CROSS is a sign of the relationship of the United Methodist Church to God through Jesus’s crucifixion and resurrection— His saving action for us and all people. The red FLAME is a reminder of the Pentecost when witnesses were unified by the power of the Holy Spirit. It also serves as a reminder of when John Wesley sensed the presence of God’s heartwarming and reminds us that we can all experience that. The power of that flame is to change and transform the world through God’s Holy Spirit in all of us. It also stands for all UNITED METHODISTS in that it symbolizes what we hold as beliefs as a denomination. We hold to the historic doctrines of the Christian faith. We are passionate about our faith and hold strong convictions. We ask questions; we wrestle with difficult issues; we value intellect and modern science, but we look to the Bible for the authoritative guidance to faith and practice. We have a passionate faith with strong convictions, but we know the world is not always black or white. We emphasize personal faith through lively corporate worship, small group membership, personal and group Bible study and to witness both inside and outside the church through personal accountability and mission. We are evangelical but moderate rather than fundamentalist. Our vision, whether it be to help people find fullness in Christ or to transform the community and renew the church or to build a Christian community by reaching the un-churched or nominally religious person or to help one person as we wish we could help all or to transform the world through the saving grace of Jesus Christ, is to remember and be faithful. That is why I think the only symbol or logo needed for Christ United Methodist Church of Sugar Land, Texas is the historical CROSS AND FLAME.


Christ United Methodist Church



The Sunday after Thanksgiving begins the season of Advent. “Advent” comes from the Latin “adventus” and means “coming.” During Advent we celebrate the comings of Christ – His birth, His presence with us in worship in Word and Spirit, and His coming again. “Hope,” “Love,” “Joy,” and “Peace” are the themes of the four Sundays of Advent. We also light candles on an “Advent Wreath” and say words together that help us prepare to receive Christ anew. Families with children lead us in those “liturgies” and light the right number of candles on the wreath for the particular Sunday. Families are also encouraged to have Advent wreaths at home where they light the candles and offer words of praise and thanks for Jesus. Very soon now letters of invitation will be sent out to Christ Church families. Then services/Sundays will be assigned. Leading the liturgy and lighting the Advent Wreath is a special privilege and an opportunity for a family to lead the entire congregation in worship. Should your family receive a letter of invitation, please respond quickly. Assignments are made on a first-come basis. IT’S BEGINNING TO LOOK A LOT LIKE. . .

Advent and Christmas Eve-Eve, and Christmas Eve, and Christmas Day and New Year’s Day! Extra volunteers are needed this time of year. Join us for “Hanging of the Greens” on Sunday afternoon, November 20, 4:00 pm, for a special time of worship followed by the decorating of the Sanctuary, Narthex, and Gathering Hall. Participate in this year’s “Angel Tree,” beginning just before Thanksgiving. Volunteer to help with the Acolytes’ Christmas Party (3:00 pm) or the Choir’s Christmas Concert (6:00 pm) on Sunday, December 11. Help greet and usher at any one of our Christmas Eve services (including the added service on Friday night). This is an extra busy time of year for everyone, but when you decide to prepare to receive Christ, you’ll discover the “real meaning” of the seasons of Advent and Christmas. “SILENT NIGHT” WORSHIP TUESDAY, DECEMBER 13, 7:00 PM

Please note the date, and invite those you know and love who are grieving this holy-day season. CARE TEAM, HEARTS OF GRACE, ALTAR PRAYER PARTNERS, STEPHEN MINISTERS, HEALING PRAYERS

Christ United Methodist Church is known in the Sugar Land community for its powerful ministries of prayer. Prayer requests are received on handwritten “Prayer Request” cards, on-line, over the telephone, and by email notes to persons on staff. Every request receives a response. Each one of our prayer ministries has a different function, but all of them seek to place the person with a need in the presence of Jesus Christ, the Healer. Care Team members meet on Monday mornings to receive the prayer requests and follow-through on them. Hearts of Grace is an intercessory prayer group that meets for an extended time of prayer in the Chapel. Altar Prayer Partners are present on Sunday mornings; they pray for all who come to worship, for an encounter with God in worship, and for those who come seeking someone to pray with them. Stephen Ministers partner with persons in need and walk with them through their times of distress. Healing Prayer services are offered the second Tuesday of every month in the Sanctuary at 7:00 pm and persons are there who follow the biblical mandate to anoint with oil, pray for and lay hands on the person in need. Countless others support this church family through their prayer times in Sunday School, HomeGroups, and classes. Yes, this church has many powerful ministries of prayer and many powerful pray-ers. Please consider becoming one yourself. For more information, contact Rev. Linda Summers Pierce or her assistant, Sandy White.


Membership is about much more than having your name on a roster; it is a commitment to grow spiritually and to participate in our life together at Christ Church. If you are looking for a new church home, we invite you to participate in our New Member Class. It is a great opportunity to learn more about spiritual growth and how we can help one another in our journey to find fullness in Christ. You will get to know the pastors, meet staff, make new friends, learn the vision of our church, find your unique ways to serve, and discover how to connect to a greater involvement within the church. Reserve your spot at our Welcome Center or online. SAGE - OAM FACEBOOK/SOCIAL MEDIA SEMINAR WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 9 • NOON • ROOMS 11/12

If you have ever wondered about how to set up a Facebook account, this seminar is for you. Older Adult Ministries presents an opportunity for participants to learn the basics of social media, including Facebook. Staff members, Bobby Wooley and Laura Gratz, will provide information and assistance to those who are curious about this area of technology. Facebook for Dummies is a recommended resource. FIFTH WEDNESDAY SEMINAR WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 30 • NOON • ROOMS 11/12

The Fifth Wednesday Seminar will be on Hospice Care/Funeral Preplanning/Cremation. This seminar is provided with older adults and care givers both in mind. A panel will facilitate a discussion of challenging issues that often arise near the end of life. This educational program is aimed at providing information seniors need to make informed choices. HOLIDAY TASTING LUNCHEON NOVEMBER 13 • AFTER 11:05 AM SERVICE

The United Methodist Women invite you to a Holiday Tasting Luncheon. We’ll begin in the Volunteer Center after worship as we assemble travel size toiletries into gift bags to be taken to the girls and women of Mexico this Christmas. After our handson mission project, we’ll move to rooms 11/12 for our luncheon. Come try a variety of dishes; you may discover something new to add to your Thanksgiving or Christmas table this year! If you have travel size toiletries you’d like to donate, you may bring them that day or drop them off in the Collection Bins outside Rooms 11/12. Questions? Contact Kim Daniels at or 832.620.9092. YOUTH PARENT MEETING JANUARY 8 • ROOMS 11/12

Parents of youth in grades 5 - 12 are invited to attend a Parent Meeting with the Youth Director, Tripp Kerth, on Sunday, January 8, 2012 at 12:15 pm in Rooms 11/12. Come find out how your child(ren) can get involved in 2012 with our Youth group, including details and registration information regarding upcoming events such as retreats, missions and camps for the winter, spring and summer of the new year. For more details, please check out


All 4th graders are encouraged to join us for a fun Friday night. We will order pizza and watch a movie here at Christ Christ. Please RSVP to Ingred Lathrop at 281.690.4748 by noon on Friday so we can order enough pizza. Bring $3.00 for the pizza and a snack to share. Come in comfy clothes, bring a pillow or blanket and invite your friends to join you. MEN’S LUNCH THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 10 • 11:30 AM • BAYTOWN SEAFOOD

Men of all ages, join the Older Adult Men for lunch and fellowship at Baytown Seafood, 2409 FM 1092, Missouri City. This is a wonderful cross generational event as well as a great way to find out what is going on in our community and beyond.



I am so thankful that I am able to attend and participate regularly in worship experiences at Christ Church. Certainly my individual encounters with the Lord and the Word are truly precious, but I acquire additional strength by participating with others in praising and thanking Him. Worshipping together is one way we help each other find fullness in Christ. I have experienced: Synergy of corporate endeavor of prayer, singing Time in His presence Ritual of comfort in the reading of liturgies Encouragement through the Passing of the Peace Nourishment in His Word Grace through partaking of Holy Communion Theology expressed through hymn texts and anthems Hope in hearing a message for future reflection We are so blessed and yet we are weak. Shall we gather together and strengthen our faith family at the next opportunity? Ron and I will look forward to being with you then.

All Youth in Grades 6 - 12, and their friends, are invited to our Youth Christmas Celebration on Sunday, December 18. We will meet in the FLC Gym beginning at 6:30 pm to share fellowship as we celebrate the birth of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ! As a special mission project, we will be adopting some of our older home-bound congregation members, as well as residents at several of the local elderly care facilities. We will be collecting items at the party to provide gift baskets to these older adults. Youth are invited to help deliver the items collected on Monday, December 19. For details and a flyer, please check out www.

people helping people find fullness in Christ worship • connect • grow • serve







Curious about how God is creating REAL crime prevention? Join this 1 hour tour experience on Thursdays at either 2 or 7:30 pm. Sign up at least a week in advance. Bible studies and other groups are welcome! Contact Betty Waedemon at 281.980.5368 to sign up or to get more information.

Join members of all ages as they create tangible expressions of the prayers of our church for those needing comfort, healing, assurance, and presence. We meet every Friday and Monday. If you don’t know how to crochet or knit, we will teach you! Email Jan Randolph at for information. HABITAT FOR HUMANITY - HOUSE BUILD GOING ON NOW

Christ Church began construction of its 11th Habitat for Humanity house in the Teal Run Subdivision on September 24. Each Saturday we will need approximately 20 volunteers to work alongside the recipient of the home to complete the construction. If hammers and nails are not your strength, we also need folks to paint, install insulation, work on landscaping, and prepare and serve food for the volunteers. Financial contributions, used to purchase the building materials, are also needed and can be made through the church office or during worship. Please write “Habitat” on the memo line. For more information on how you can get involved, please contact Stanton Brown ( or Mark Buhrke ( Won’t you help us make someone’s dream of owning a home come true? SENIOR RINGERS MONDAYS • 5 - 6 PM • CHOIR ROOM

This musical opportunity is available to all interested persons, especially Older Adults. It offers a place to learn, serve and fellowship through the art of ringing chimes or handbells under the direction of Molly Ness. No experience is necessary. To join this ensemble, contact Molly Ness at 281.344.8343.

Escape the summer heat here, and enjoy the mild winter in Peru. We will visit Lima and the city of Cuzco, the historic capital of the Inca empire. We plan to sponsor the Lamay Orphanage, and one of our concerts in Peru will be a fundraiser for them. Questions? Contact Lahonda Sharp at If you’re a frequent traveler and have a stash of travel sized toiletries you’ve amassed, the United Methodist Women would love to put them to good use. On November 13, we will be assembling gift bags for the girls and women of Mexico. Please bring donations to the Collection Bins outside Rooms 11/12 by the 13, and help show Christ’s love across our border. CARPENTER’S HANDS “ONE DAY, GOD’S HOUSE” FEBRUARY 11 • 8 AM - 3:30 PM

Join us for our next Carpenters Hands event! Breakfast (beginning at 7 am) and lunch are included, and our day will begin at 8 am with a time of devotion. Crews will be made up of a mix of skill levels, with at least one or two members having prior experience with the work to be done. Our purpose is to beautify the church as well as add practical improvements to the facility that will enhance current usages. Please sign up in advance if you are willing to help. You can sign up in the Ministry Center in January up to February 4, 2012, you can sign up online, or you can email Roland at This will help us plan our work crews and organize the work we hope to accomplish. This event is open to all adults as well as youth 12 and up (if accompanied by a parent). MORE GOD, LESS CRIME CONFERENCE JANUARY 14 • 10 AM • FAMILY LIFE CENTER GYM


Save the Date! If you have a desire for witnessing God’s transformative love in action you won’t want to miss this Region wide conference on the powerful effects of faith in prison. Congressman Pete Olson will open this event here in the Christ Church Gym on January 14 starting at 10 am. Renowned criminologist and Distinguished Professor from Baylor University Byron R. Johnson will present the findings from his book “More God, Less Crime” proving that religion can be a powerful antidote to crime. Come hear how faith communities are making a real difference. Personal testimonies will also be given by current and former prisoners. The event includes lunch and ends with a field trip on the Freedom Bus to the Carol Vance Prison unit to witness God’s power behind the bars. Everyone is welcome! Stay tuned for registration details to follow.



Our 5th grade mission team invites you to donate half of the candy you receive this trick or treat season and give joy to the children of Reynosa. Please bring all donations to the Collection Bin near rooms 11/12. The candy will be made into goodie bags by the team and taken to Mexico in time for Christmas.

You can participate in this ongoing ministry without leaving your neighborhood. Sign the prayer chain to pray during the weekend November 9 - 12, donate to the cookie fund, or sponsor a participant or team member. Visit the Ministry Center for more information, or contact T. J. Szafarz at or Liz Williams at lazylizard@

This coming summer we dare you to join the Las Manos de Cristo crew for the adventure of a lifetime. We challenge you to give up the comforts of your home and join us as we travel to Jamaica to work for and serve the families living there. Come with us to win the hearts of these villagers by helping with their daily survival tasks. Integrate into their world and exchange cultures as you minister through drama, construction, interaction with their children, and sharing the Gospel message. For more info and to register, please visit BABY BAGS!


Christ United Methodist Church

Do you like to share in the celebration of new life? The Baby Bag ministry is for you! We are in need of volunteers to help in this ministry. The bags are created and delivered to member families that have had a new baby as a way to welcome the baby and celebrate God’s new addition to their family. If you have a desire to help, please contact Leigh Anne Diekroeger at

All youth who have completed 5th - 8th grade as of June 2012 are invited to join us this summer for FYSH ‘Home Base’ Camp next summer. Designed especially for middle school youth, FYSH ‘Home Base’ is a day camp which will include a service project in the surrounding area each morning, followed by a fun activity in the afternoon. This is a great opportunity to help your student find their servant heart in a home-based environment, and to have them meet new friends through service, fellowship and worship. For more info and to register, please visit www.cumcsl. org/youth. BIG HOUSE 2012 - SPACE IS LIMITED TO THE FIRST 15 YOUTH WHO REGISTER JUNE 28 - JULY 1 • WOODVILLE, TX

BIG HOUSE is an acronym which stands for Believing in God, Helping Others Understand through Service Everywhere. Our mission is “To prepare youth and adults to be the hands and feet of Jesus Christ, by providing opportunity to be in mission to churches in need everywhere.” We want to give opportunity for youth to come together and grow in their Christian experience, through all aspects of our mission trip, whether it be on the worksite, or in fellowship with one another. Camps include participants who have completed the 6th through the 8th grades from all over Texas. These youth come together in mission locations with the help of adults to work on churches and homes of those who are in need, and are unable to do the work themselves. For more info and to register, please visit www. UM ARMY 2012 JULY 22 - 28

Join us in the summer of 2012, as we will be hosted by St. Paul’s UMC in Bridge City, TX for our UM Army Mission. During this week, participants will be assigned to work teams which combine their unique strengths and gifts in order to meet the home repair and maintenance needs of the less fortunate in the area. This is an amazing mission that allows us to share the Gospel message of love and hope offered by Jesus Christ through our hands and our hearts. For more info and to register, please visit CHARGE CONFERENCE TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 29 • 7 PM • SANCTUARY

Be sure to join us at our Church Charge Conference. This meeting is open to everyone, and it is an opportunity to find out more about what is happening at our church. Questions? Contact Debbie Meier at ANGEL TREE HELPERS NEEDED! NOVEMBER 13 • MINISTRY CENTER

What a blessing it is to help those in need especially at Christmas. Please join our Angel Tree volunteers and help deliver the joy of Christmas to needy children and elderly in nursing homes. You can also help with decorating and creating the beautiful Angel tree that stands in the Ministry Center during the holidays. Help us share God’s love this Christmas. Visit the Ministry Center November 13 or contact Terri Schnakenberg at 281.924.4597.

This class is composed of singles and couples of all ages with a participatory format and Bible-based studies. Meets in the Bride’s Room. 9:45 AM SUNDAY SCHOOL CLASSES ADVENTURERS

This class consists of couples in their 30’s - 50’s, with children of all ages. This group is a discussion-oriented class studying a variety of Biblical topics. We use study guides, videos, guest speakers and music to enhance our studies. Meets in room 302/303 in the Family Life Center. BARNABAS

This class is a friendly community consisting of adults in their 40’s - 60’s united by a shared belief in Christ, seeking and providing encouragement to one another through prayer, Bible study, topical studies and lots of fellowship. Meets in the Chapel. CELEBRATE SINGLES SUNDAY SCHOOL

All singles are invited to join us for our new Sunday School class. Meets in room 309 in the Family Life Center. COUPLES FOR CHRIST

This class consists of married couples in their 20’s - 40’s with or without children. It is a relaxed, yet engaging class that provides Christ-centered fellowship, support, and opportunities for service. Meets in the Bride’s Room (across from Sanctuary). GRACE ABOUNDS

All ages and stages of life are welcome (married, single, single on Sunday). This class has a participatory rather than lecture format. We love a great discussion! Study facilitators rotate among interested class members. Meets in room 301 in the Family Life Center. GRACE NOTES

This class is composed of choir members who love to study God’s word and discuss relevant issues. Meets in the Choir Room. H.O.P.E. 24/7 (HEAR OUR PRAYERS EVERYDAY 24/7)

Our name reflects our focus on prayer. Discussion-oriented studies cover a range of topics to encourage spiritual growth. Socials and missions round out our activities for members, ages 40’s - 70’s. Meets in room 311 in the Family Life Center. JUBILEE

This class is made up of mature individuals, ages 50+ who enjoy the fellowship of others and share in the nourishment gained from Bible-based studies. Lively discussions abound under the leadership of Jan Randolph. Meets in rooms 11/12. SEEKERS

This is a class of mixed ages with couples, singles, and single on Sundays that concentrates on Bible study, missions and lively discussion. Meets in room 308 in the Family Life Center. STAGES

This class consists of single parents, remarried couples, and blended families, ages 30-50’s, exploring a mix of Biblical studies and contemporary issues. Meets in room 310 in the Family Life Center. TGIS (THANK GOD IT’S SUNDAY)

This class is made up of couples and singles of all ages who enjoy lively discussion and fellowship. Topics range from Bible study to contemporary issues and books. Meets in the Scout Shack. THE HUB LIFEGROUP

From 9:45 - 10:45 in the Family Life Center Gym each Sunday morning. Come explore God’s Word in a relaxed and comfortable setting. WEAVERS

This class is made up of marrieds and singles, ages 55+, dedicated to Bible study, fellowship and service. This class is very mission-oriented. Meets in the Library (upstairs across from the Sanctuary). WOMEN’S CLASS

This class is made up of women of all ages whether married, single, widowed or divorced. We primarily do Bible-based studies and various service projects. Meets in room 307 in the Family Life Center. YOUNG ADULT SUNDAY SCHOOL Primarily for college and career aged, 18-29. Meets in the Family Life Center Gym.

people helping people find fullness in Christ worship • connect • grow • serve


FYSH ‘HOME BASE’ CAMP 2012 JUNE 4 - 7 • 8:30 AM - 3 PM DAILY








Requests for assistance at East Fort Bend Human Needs Ministry have increased and food donations have decreased. The Food Pantry shelves have been depleted and are in need of restocking. The following food items are needed immediately: canned tuna, canned chili, macaroni & cheese, rice, peanut butter, jelly, flour, bar soap and toilet paper. Please help your neighbors in need by placing food donations in the Collection Bin. You can also make a monetary donation by indicating Food Pantry in the memo line of your check or you may donate online. Your support will help a Fort Bend neighbor in need.

For the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays, the Food Pantry provides all the groceries necessary to prepare a traditional holiday meal for those in our community needing a helping hand. This year the Food Pantry plans to give out 700 holiday food baskets. Food items needed for the Holiday Food program include: stuffing mix, canned sweet potatoes, green beans, corn cranberry sauce, chicken broth, evaporated milk, canned pumpkin, canned fruit, instant mashed potatoes, sugar, flour, gravy mix pkgs, canned pie filling, cake mix/frosting. Please donate to help make the holidays a little brighter for our Fort Bend neighbors in need. BRIGHTEN THE HOLIDAYS FOR THE CHILDREN NOW THROUGH NOVEMBER 27 • COLLECTION BINS

The 5 Grade Mission Team is busy again. We are collecting small children’s toys and teen gifts, to be wrapped and taken to the children of Reynosa, Mexico, in time for Christmas. Ideas include: McDonald’s toys, small stuffed animals, sports balls, pocket games, dress-up items, matchbox cars, watches, ball caps, small make-up/toiletry items, calculators, english-spanish dictionaries, etc. Items can be new or gently used and should be brought to the collection bins near room 12 by Sunday, November 27. We welcome donations of wrapping paper and and tape. Please join us for a wrapping extravaganza in rooms 210/211 on Sunday, November 27 from 10:45 to 12:30. All ages are invited; this is a great opportunity to serve as a family.


Just a word of thanks to everyone who participated in 2011 Soles for Souls campaign by providing new tennis shoes or money to assist disadvantaged students in our local area. What a blessing to belong to a church that responds to this need in our area. During the 2011 campaign, 153 pairs of new tennis shoes for students to wear to school this year. Christ Church is the largest single contributor of new shoes for students in need. The wonderful money contributions will be used to purchase needed shoe sizes. Thank you for being “ People Helping People Find Fullness in Christ. ” Sandra Vautrain Founder/Team Leader Soles for Souls


Christ United Methodist Church

The 9th Annual Taste of Sugar Land is set for Sunday, November 13 from 4 - 8 pm at Safari Texas Ranch. The epicurean evening will feature over 20 of the best area restaurants, silent and live auctions, along with live entertainment. A portion of the proceeds will be donated to East Fort Bend Human Needs Ministry, Fort Bend Family Promise and Fort Bend Women’s Center. Tickets are $30 per person and are available at East Fort Bend Human Needs Ministry (435 Stafford Run; 281.261.4902) or email

Children’s ministry needs an adult volunteer to serve alongside our 5th grade Seder Kitchen coordinator. You would be needed during the Sunday school hour on Sunday 1/22, 1/29 and 2/5 and on the day of the event which is Saturday 2/11 from 3 -7 to supervise a group of 8-10 5th grade students. We request that it NOT be a parent of a 5th grader as we want them to participate in the Seder with their student. You will have parent helpers during the Sunday prep days to help you. Please contact Ingred Lathrop at 281.690.4748 or 4TH AND 5TH GRADE GIRLS TIME MARK YOUR CALENDARS • DECEMBER 4

It is our annual Christmas Caroling and Hot chocolate “Girl Time” event. Watch your mail for details.


A table will be set up in the Ministry Center for presale orders. Delivery will be on Sunday, November 20 from 9 am – 12:15 pm in the Gathering Hall. You can even pre-order one for Christmas at this time! GENTLE YOGA TUESDAYS • 11 AM • FLC ROOMS 302/303

Put on some comfortable clothes and try out Gentle Yoga. It’s a free class, so invite a friend and work on flexibility, balance, range of motion, strength and breathing. CRAZY FOR CHRISTMAS WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 30 • 6 PM

It will be an evening of dinner, desserts, fellowship, shopping, and great entertainment. This is an event that can be enjoyed by the whole family. Tickets are $20 for adults and $10 for children 12 and under. Reservations can be made for small children who may not be ready for this event by contacting Kim Ripley at 281.980.6888, x4784 (pizza will be provided for these kids.) Tickets are on sale now through November 27 in the Ministry Center. If you would like to decorate a table and/or buy tickets, please contact Diane Sindelar at 281.491.3569.


All middle school youth (6th – 8th grade) are invited to join us in the Family Life Center Gym every Sunday night from 5 - 7:15 pm. We will begin with games, then move to a small group time and end with worship. HIGH SCHOOL THE LOFT • SUNDAYS • 6:15 - 8:30 PM • FLC

This is a great place for high school youth to hang out and relax together in Christian fellowship, Sundays from 6:15 - 8:30 pm in the Family Life Center. THE ENCOUNTER • WEDNESDAYS • 7 - 8:30 PM • CHAPEL

High school students are invited to this weekly Bible study, Wednesday evenings from 7 - 8:30 pm in the Chapel. ACQUIRE THE FIRE (ATF) JANUARY 20-21, 2012 • GRACE COMMUNITY CHURCH

Start the New Year off right by joining the Christ Church Youth group in attending Acquire the Fire (ATF) over the weekend of January 2021, 2012. This is a high energy two-day event produced by a national touring group and attended by youth from throughout the Houston area and includes awesome worship, speakers and small group time. To view more about the upcoming tour, go to All youth in grades 7-12 and adults are invited to attend. Cost is $49, and you can register online. Hope to see you there! ENCORE! WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 7• 11 AM - 1:30 PM • SANCTUARY

Join us for “Sights and Sounds of Christmas.” The program will include holiday music performed by the Houston Chinese Traditional Music Group and tips for decorating simply for Christmas presented by Treschelle Brown. Worship is at 11 in the Sanctuary followed by a fellowship meal in the Gathering Hall. The program will be in the Sanctuary after lunch. $7 donation. Pre-registration is required for the meal and closes December 4. Reserve your space by emailing jan@ UMW BOOKCLUB SECOND TUES. OF EACH MONTH • VOLUNTEER CENTER

Please join us on the second Tuesday of each month through December as we read and explore Just Choose Happiness: A Guide to Joyous Living by Nell W. Mohney. For more information, please contact Benita Sebesta at


Join us for our District Mid-Winter Retreat. This year we will be heading to the piney woods of Huntsville by attending MidWinter at Forest Glen Camp. Come reconnect with your friends from summer camp and meet some new ones! Who can attend? All Youth in grades 7-12 and Adults How much? Early Registration: $165 (Youth) and $135 (Adults) for all who register on or before January 23, 2012; Deposit of $50 at time of registration thru January 16th with balance due 1/23/12 Late Registration: $215 (Youth) and $185 (Adults) Late fees apply for registrations received 1/24/12 thru 2/6/12. What does it include? Retreat cost and round-trip transportation How do I register? Go to the Mid-Winter event page of the church website and click ‘Register Here.’ Register NOW and your spot will be reserved with a $50 deposit (through January 16th). The outstanding balance and forms are due January 23, 2012. Deadline: January 23,2012 (Early); February 6, 2012 (Late)Join us in the summer of 2012, as we will be hosted by St. Paul’s UMC in Bridge City, TX for our UM Army Mission. During this week, participants will be assigned to work teams which combine their unique strengths and gifts in order to meet the home repair and maintenance needs of the less fortunate in the area. This is an amazing mission that allows us to share the Gospel message of love and hope offered by Jesus Christ through our hands and our hearts. For more info and to register, please visit www.cumcsl. org/youth. MENS MINISTRY HERE ARE THE MEN’S STUDY GROUPS WHICH ARE OPEN TO ALL MEN: TUESDAY NIGHTS • 7:15 - 9 PM • ROOM 312

Studying Andy Stanley’s “Your Move”


Studying Max Lucado’s “Fearless”


Discussing current topics of group interest and how they are addressed within the Bible SUNDAY EVENINGS • 7:30 - 9 PM • ROOM 307

Discussing current topics of group interest and how they are addressed within the Bible For group contact info go to

HAVE YOU READ A GREAT BOOK LATELY? If you’ve read a Christian book recently that you’d like to share with others, please consider submitting a book review to Christ Corner Bookstore. Contact Tricia Baltazar for submissions or questions at

For a full listing of activities and ways you can get involved at Christ Church, please visit WWW.CUMCSL.ORG


people helping people find fullness in Christ worship • connect • grow • serve


Normal bookstore hours are Sundays, 9:00 am - 12:30 pm & Thursdays, 10:00 am - 12:30 pm.





Fuzzy’s Taco Shop in Sugar Land serves some of the freshest tacos, chili con queso, and burritos in town! Christ Church will hold a fellowship event at Fuzzy’s on November 9 from 5 - 9 pm. Whether you are looking for a cheap dinner, having a night out with the family, or just grabbing a quick bite before choir practice, we invite you to join us there. Fuzzy will donate 10% of the proceeds back to our ministry. The proceeds from this event will benefit East Fort Bend Human Needs Ministry. And, don’t forget your Fuzzy’s cup. COMMITMENT SUNDAY NOVEMBER 13


On Commitment Sunday, all of us have the opportunity to express our love to God by the commitments we make in support of our church’s ministry for 2012. Please bring your Connect Card and Commitment Card with you to worship, or turn them in early to the office. The Unleashing Love Stewardship Campaign packets were mailed out; if you didn’t receive a packet, stop by the Welcome Center on Sunday and ask for one.

We are delighted you are part of Christ Church. If you have a question or if we can help you within the life of the church, please feel free to contact us. CHRIST CHURCH STAFF

Rev. Mike Mayhugh, Interim Senior Pastor Rev. Linda Summers Pierce, Executive Associate Pastor Rev. Jason Nelson, Exec. Director of Discipleship Ministries Karen LaMotta, Exec. Dir. of Outreach Ministries Jeanne Damon, Discipleship Ministries Stacey Fleck, Business Manager Roland Huysman, Facilities Tripp Kerth, Youth Ministries Ingred Lathrop, Children’s Ministries Jan Randolph, Older Adult Ministries Lahonda Sharp, Music Ministries Renee Teel, Mission Ministries For a complete staff listing, please visit our website at

PLEASE REMEMBER IN YOUR PRAYERS... Jim & Polly McConnell’s son, Harold Abels, Paul Stimson, Becky Tullos, Harry Sparwasser’s mother, Sue Harris’ sister, Benita Sebesta’s mother, Pat Thornton, Richard, Harry Sparwasser’s mother, The Woods Family, Gen Jordan’s friend, Pat Rabon, Janice Gilbert’s daughter, Ann Caraway’s brotherin-law, Durben Miller, and all those serving in the military. ANSWERED PRAYERS... Vicky Wise’s step-father; Holly Griffith’s friend’s son; Matt Decker’s niece; Carole Linnartz’ granddaughter; Karen Sherlock’s mother; Kay Decker’s mother. CHRIST CHURCH EXTENDS ITS SYMPATHY TO... Janis Parsley on the death of her mother; Kenneth Love on the death of his father; Mary Nagai on the death of her father; John Nieser and family on the death of his mother; Annette Smith on the death of her cousin; Ann Lindsey on the death of her mother. SHARE YOUR JOYS AND CONCERNS WITH US

Your pastoral staff and leaders of Christ Church’s Member Care Ministries want to share in your joys and concerns. You might not know this, but hospitals do not contact churches – even when you give them your church name, address, and contact information. Part of this is due to HIPPA laws. So whether you’re about to enter the hospital or you’re celebrating the birth of a baby, please call Sandy White in the church office at 281.980.6888. She will forward your message to the pastors and appropriate member care ministry leaders. PHONE: 281.980.6888 • WWW.CUMCSL.ORG • FACEBOOK.COM/CUMCSL people helping people find fullness in Christ worship • connect • grow • serve

The Connection 11.07.11  

Christ United Methodist Church Sugar Land Newsletter 11.07.11

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