Page 1


MAY 2017

Genesis 12:1 “The LORD had said to Abram, “Go from your country, your people and your father’s household to the land I will show you…So Abram went, as the Lord had told him.” I can only imagine how Abram felt when God told him to leave his country and family to a place he had never even seen yet. But I’m starting to get it. Transition is hard, but I love that God is in and under and over it all.

God is in it all ALL the time if we look. God is calling us ALL in a direction if we listen. Bill and I may be leaving, but God is leading the way. Just as God is leading the way here…in everything, under everything, over everything. Keep listening to God’s call! He will show you the way to go. As I look at the rest of the calendar for May, we celebrate Mother’s day and how God uses women to remind us of his amazing love. (Women, we have special flowers for you!) Then on May 21st we will celebrate those who are graduating High School and beyond.

If you haven’t gotten that info to Tiarra yet, please do ASAP. Gruene Tree Learning Center will be winding down soon… transitions abound! As we transition from school to summer…please note that on Sunday, May 28th (Memorial weekend) we will only have 2 services. 8:30 as usual, then 9:50 in the main sanctuary. Come a little early and we will have other “summery” food like watermelon and who knows what else! Spend extra time getting to know your “neighbors” here at Gruene and making deeper connections. Transitions happen all the time… every year, every season. I pray that this time of transition, even if it is a little hard, will be full of God’s presence and peace. Thanks for letting me be your pastor! Pastor Karen

This Month • Vacation Bible Party • Missions Update

• Mother’s Day • Senior Sunday • New Associate Pastor

Vacation Bible Party (VBP) is Coming Soon to Gruene UMC! Mark your calendars for June 26th - 30th From 9 a.m. - Noon. Registration is now open! Go to to sign-up! We need everyone’s help to make this the most awesome VBP ever. Here’s how you can help: Pray for the VBP leadership team. Pray for all the children who will attend, that their hearts would be open to the message of what Jesus can give them- hope, courage, direction, love, and His power. Pray for all the volunteers who make VBP possible. Please pray about how you can help with VBP. Please stop by the VBP table on Sunday to sign-up to volunteer or contact Brandi Carnes at brandi

We want to take time in worship on Sunday, May 21st to recognize/ honor our graduates. If you have loved ones who are graduating at high school or above, please notify Tiarra Evans at

Don’t Forget! May 14th is

Gruene Tree Learning Center News He Is Risen!!!

I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he dies, yet shall he live. John 11:25 It is hard to believe that the GTLC school year of 20162017 is coming to a close so quick! Easter has come and gone and now we are in the home stretch! End of the year programs and graduation are being fine tuned! I just love hearing those angels sing! Every year goes by just a little faster it seems, so I pray with all my heart that as families and children leave this place they will always know the love we have for them…not just while they are here, but forever! Love doesn’t stop…it just grows! We are so lucky to live in a community that as much as we keep growing, we are still small enough to see families out and about through our daily lives! I love God for blessing us with GTLC/GUMC! I think He is a good guy! Blessings, Rebecca Goossens, GTLC Director

Meet our New Associate Pastor Rev. Aaron Carter We are so excited to announce that Bishop Schnase and the cabinet have appointed Rev. Aaron Carter as the new associate pastor of Gruene! Members of the Staff Parish Relations Committee (SPRC) were pleased to meet him on May 2nd. What a great guy! Pastor Aaron was born in San Antonio and is one of five children to Stanley and Toni McKinney. He lived in San Antonio until he was thirteen, when he moved to Moore, Oklahoma following a parental job change. After graduating from Mid-Del Christian School, Pastor Aaron went on to attend Rose State College on a basketball scholarship. He earned another athletic scholarship to continue playing basketball at Newman University in Wichita, Kansas where his peers voted him team captain. He graduated in May of 2007 with a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology. Pastor Aaron prepared for full time pastoral ministry by attending the Candler School of Theology at Emory University in Atlanta Georgia. In May of 2010 he earned his Masters of Divinity degree with a concentration in Church and Community Leadership. While a student, Pastor Aaron served at Victory For The World Church as both an executive assistant to the Pastor and Youth Minister. After that, he became the Youth and Young Adult Pastor at Fifth Street Missionary Baptist Church in Oklahoma City where he organized their youth ministry. While serving at Fifth Street Min. Carter was ordained into the Gospel Ministry. Following a call upon his life, Pastor Aaron took a leap of faith and moved to New York City to serve God. During his time in New York, he ministered at Grace Congregational Church in Harlem, Ecclesia Churches of New York in Harlem, and Graffiti 2 Ministries in the Bronx. Once back in San Antonio, Rev. Carter received opportunities to minister in his childhood church, Antioch Missionary Baptist Church. As things began to shift theologically, Pastor Aaron began his candidacy in the United Methodist Church. Pastor Aaron is currently serving as an Associate Pastor at St. Paul United Methodist Church where Rev. James Amerson is the Pastor and he will begin the formal process to be ordained in the United Methodist Church at this annual conference in June. And…he proposed to his fiancée this weekend…and she said yes! We all look forward to welcoming him as he arrives to Gruene on July 2.

Did you know‌ Gruene UMC has an App?

YES and it’s FREE! Be sure to download it today and get connected to the GUMC Facebook page, get alerts about events, and PUSHPAY our electronic giving. Go to the apps store on your phone and search for Gruene UMC.

NOW HIRING Teachers!

Gruene Tree Learning Center (GTLC) is Now Hiring for the 2017/2018 school year. Previous experience is great to have, but having the love for children is always a must. Applications can be picked up at the GTLC front desk with Ms. Karmin or at the church office with Ms. Nadia. For more information, please contact GTLC Director Rebecca Goossens at

Gruene UMC Helicopter Easter Egg Drop April 14, 2017

By Pastor Brock Is it May already? Before I get into May I want to take a moment to recognize all the amazing things that took place around this place (and out in the community) in the month of April. We kicked off the month with Be The Church. You guys showed up and helped take everything you love about this place out into our community. The following projects took place on Sunday, April 2nd: River City Advocacy, Connections Family Services, Colonial Manor, blood drive and stuffing thousands of eggs for the Helicopter Easter Egg Drop. Thank you, thank you, thank you for being the hands and feet of Jesus right here. Your Missions Team was busy in April, they met with and supported the following organizations and causes: New Braunfels Young Life, Community First Village, Children’s Advocacy Center of Comal County, UMCOR (United Methodist Committee On Relief), Good Samaritan Rescue

Methodist Global Ministries that are planting churches in Ecuador. Through Easter Feast about 70 families had Easter meals complete with smoked ham, mashed potatoes, green beans and rolls. Thanks to you & your support these meals were prepared by the BBQ ministry and delivered to these families. And of course the many many different amazing activities and services that surround Easter. Thank you for all that you do and all that you are, and for sharing that with this community of faith.

Be The Church volunteers working at the River City Advocacy Center.

Steve’s Pantry Update I want to start out by lifting up praise for Steve’s Pantry and all the wonderful volunteers that make this beautiful ministry work. Steve’s Pantry is an outreach ministry that helps folks with food, clothes, use of laundry facilities, showers and most importantly builds relationships with some great folks. I also want to take this opportunity to lift up Melissa Lind for her tireless work over the past two years overseeing everything about Steve’s Pantry and coordinating the many volunteers. At the end of last month Melissa passed the baton of that position to Stephanie Anderson. Melissa has a beautiful heart for God’s children and loves on folks so amazingly. If you see Melissa around the church please thank her for all that she has done and continues to do.

Stephanie has been helping Melissa in so many different ways in the Pantry for quite some time and is awesome. As summer fast approaches I want to put out an all call for volunteers at the Pantry. Due to folks traveling and schedules changing it is always a bit more challenging over the summer to keep the volunteer slots full. Please consider volunteering, I know that Stephanie would love to hear from you. If you want more information about Steve’s Pantry or want to volunteer, please email Stephanie at

Church By The River Did you know that Gruene puts on a service for our friends in need down by the river under the bridge at IH-35? Yep, and it is awesome. We worship with music and message, we share Communion, we share a meal, we share donated clothes, food and toiletries. Most important of all, we love on some amazing folks. If you have never experienced Church By The River (CBR) come on out and check it out. CBR is held the last Saturday of every month. We meet at Gruene at 8:45 to load up supplies then we circle up to pray and head down to the river. Check out CBR, a life could be changed and it may be yours. For more information or to help out with CBR please email Pastor Brock at Home In A Week Gruene is excited to continue its partnership with Home In A Week Ministry. This is a ministry that partners with churches to host and sponsor “pre-build” days to put together many different components of a house and then all those components come together in one week and a house is built. Last December Gruene hosted a “pre-build” day and then in January some folks from Gruene were part of the build week down in the valley. The last build week was the week after Easter and some folks from Gruene

took part in either the pre-build work or the build week to make a home for a family in Rio Grande City. If you want more information about Home In A Week or about volunteer opportunities please email Pastor Brock at

Your Ideas Are Needed Your Missions Team wants to hear from you. The Team meets the first Wednesday of every month @ 6:30 in Steve’s Pantry here at Gruene. Come hear what your Missions Team is up to, come share your ideas and most important of all come help shape what LOVE looks like in 2017. You can email Pastor Brock at with any ideas of projects for your Missions Team to support. “You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit – fruit that will last”. John 15:16

As you pray, put into words your desire to be available to God. You will discover that His willingness to use you is even greater than your desire to be used. Thank you for your desire. Blessings,

Pastor Brock

Senior Sunday is coming!! In honor of all our 2017 graduates, we want to celebrate you on Sunday, May 21st. Graduating is such a huge milestone and here at Gruene, we want to be a part of that celebration. Whether you are a graduating senior high student, undergraduate, graduate or doctoral graduate, we want to honor you. What we need to honor you on Senior Sunday? Senior High Students Only: Full name, future plans, baby picture and current picture of yourself. Adult Graduates: Full name, what school you’re graduating from and what field (current picture if you so desire but not required). All information for both youth and adults should be emailed to Tiarra at as soon as possible. Youth Are Selling Stock!! Sunday, May 14th Gruene UMC youth are selling stock for their middle school mission trip to Rockport Texas and high school mission trip with ASP in Virginia. Each sponsor will have the opportunity not only to contribute financial but also to journey along with a student throughout the duration of their mission trip. Upon the return from both mission trips, all sponsors will be invited to partake in a dinner with the students, leaders and parents. Conversations, food, pictures

and honoring. There will be a table located in the back of Motown with more information about how you can become a mission trip partner and in the gathering space in the main building. For more information about how to make further contributions or donations, please contact Tiarra @

Confirmation 2017

Rev. Karen Horan - Pastor

Brandi Carnes - Nursery Director

Rev. Brock Gillman - Associate Pastor

Rebecca Goossens - GTLC Director

Nadia Hoffman – Administrative Assistant

Tiarra Evans - Youth Director

2629 E. Common St. New Braunfels TX 78130 (830) 625-7200 Fax: (830) 625-7208 OFFICE HOURS M-F, 8:30 - 4:30

SUNDAY WORSHIP SERVICES 8:30, 9:40 & 11:00 a.m. (Main Building) 9:50 a.m. (Motown) “Come…be you, be filled , be loved. Go…be joy, be hope, be love. Be His! ”

See What’s Happening There are so many fun and exciting groups here at Gruene! To find out what’s going on, check us out on the Gruene UMC facebook page or on our website,

Gruene UMC NEWS May 2017