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March 1st Gruene UMC NEWS

March 2017

So...what is Lent? Why do we do this? Lent is a funny word, unless we are talking about the stuff in our dryer or what gets on our sweaters, right? But Lent is also a season of the church (six weeks or 40 days) to prepare our hearts, our lives for Easter. Literally, the word lent means “spring” as it is celebrated in the spring time. Sometimes in this season we will talk about fasting…giving up or letting go of things so we can focus on Jesus… other times we will feast…taking things on to focus on Jesus. Fasting and feasting…all to focus on Jesus. Why 40 days? Because Jesus prepared for 40 days before he started his earthly ministry. Right after Jesus was baptized, he went into the desert for 40 days and nights. He was tempted…he was reminded of how human he was. Jesus fasted and was hungry, tired, and REALLY tempted… but he was never alone. Why is this season before Easter? Well…Jesus spent the 40 days in the desert just before he started his public ministry…some say it was a

time of preparation for ministry. So, we prepare ourselves for the resurrection power we receive at Easter, for the call to be transformed / shaped and molded, and to then go and make disciples…so, we prepare. How do we prepare? We begin by remembering that we are human… God is God and we are not. We remember that we were made from the dirt / dust…ashes to ashes…our physical body will return to dust and ashes. So we start with Ash Wednesday…a time to put things in perspective and begin the journey. “Living the Story” is the sermon series…a time to step into learning what Jesus did and do what he did. Sometimes it is amazing and wondrous and other times it is outrageous and scary…but it is a story worth living. God is God, and we are not…thanks be to God! So, as we get started on this Journey of faith…Living the story, let’s pray and worship and follow faithfully. It all begins March 1st at 6:30 p.m.

This Month  Pastor’s Thoughts  Youth Star of The

Month  Ash Wednesday  Run., Feed, Love 5K  Princess Ball  Mission Update

Calendar Ash Wednesday Service March 1st at 6:30. p.m. (child care provided)

Imposition of ashes Wednesday morning from 6:45 a.m. - 8 a.m. In main building

March 11th 8am - 2pm

Come Holy Spirit…fill the hearts of your faithful and kindle in us the fire of your love. Pour down your presence…your mercy and grace…your love…your life. Come close, we need you. Amen

A new season is upon us…the season of Lent. A season to prepare, yes, but also a time to reflect on who we are, what we do (or don’t do) and how we might invite God to transform us more into being who and what God designed us to be. I love this season because it gives me a good “excuse” (as if I need one!) to be a little quieter with God. To listen more…to fast more regularly and purposefully…to allow God to whisper God’s truths even if they make us uncomfortable! I also love this season because it isn’t ONLY about just sitting with God reflecting but also a time to purposefully moving. Following Jesus…listening and learning and doing what Jesus did. Almost every time we see Jesus going off alone to pray or commune with God it was followed by a healing or a miracle or time of teaching!

So I pray you will join us in that pattern of reflecting, fasting, letting things go that may not be good for us and then going into the world and doing what Jesus did… loving like Jesus loved and serving like Jesus served. I love this season! Join us for Ash Wednesday when we will be imposing ashes from 6:45am-8:30 am then have a service at 6:30pm. Child care will be provided for the evening service. God’s peace to you,

(Contact Rev. Karen Horan at

Missions & Muffins At our February meeting, we made Fiesta flower crowns for our friends at Colonial Manor for the Cinco de Mayo party in May. Also, on February 14th we hosted a Valentines party at Colonial Manor. Our next meeting is the 2nd Thursday, March 9th, at 9:30am in MoTown. We will be preparing supplies and organizing for our Annual Recycle Sale and also continuing to work on the Flower crowns from February. Friday, March 10th is the workday for our Recycle Sale – we will be at the church from 10am – 6pm receiving, sorting and preparing donated items. Volunteers please bring a roll of masking tape, a marker, scissors and your M&Ms apron (if you need one, contact Laura ASAP!). Volunteer Stud Muffins are also welcome to help with moving and setting up tables and such. DONORS: We can only accept items 10am - 6pm on Friday, March 10th. We will NOT be able to accept large, heavy items like Furniture, Desks, Entertainment Centers, old TVs, Electronics/Computers, Mattresses or Infant Car Seats. Please label household linens with sizes if you can – (Sheets sets = King, Queen; Drapes/ Curtains = 48” x 84”, etc.).


We hope you can join us, all are welcome – many are on our email list that aren’t able to attend meetings but support us with resources and prayers. For more information or to join the Google Group email list, contact Laura McFall at

Missions & Muffins (M&Ms) needs your unwanted, leftover, won’t fit, won’t fit in the closet, out of season, out of style, excess, did some Spring cleaning and now what do I do with this STUFF!! Please deliver your items to the church on Friday, March 10th, from 8 a.m. - 6p.m. The funds raised from this sale give us the opportunity to support many local charitable organizations and sponsor the Giving Tree at Christmas. For more information, contact Laura at or Betsy at Betsy

Hello W.O.W. Children’s Ministry family & Friends, PRINCESS BALL MARCH 4th registration is up at Come for an enchanting evening for Father/Father figure & their special daughter/s! We can’t wait to celebrate a magical night with you! If you have questions please contact Stephanie DeVault at & if you’d like to volunteer. It is so much fun you won’t want to miss!! DONTIONS NEEDED! Its that time of year that we start collecting wrapped candy for the Helicopter Easter Egg drop so please bring and we will have a box for the candy donations. We can’t have any free or opened candy. Thank you! VOLUNTEERS NEEDED! We are looking for a kinder & 1st set of teachers to give our current teachers a break on Sunday! Everything is done and prepared ahead of time for you and sent to you during the week to look over for review. You have a team of others to support you & some awesome kids!

Helicopter Easter Egg Drop is Saturday April 15th

VBP (Vacation Bible Party) June 26th-30th Theme: Gadgets and GizmosUniquely wired and Wonderfully made Thank you, Stephanie DeVault Children’s Ministry Director


JUNE 26th - 30th

(Contact Stephanie DeVault at

Run Feed Love 5K February 25th

Because of YOU our 5K was a success!

Over 300 participants and we raised over $8,000 to help feed the hungry in our community. Thank you!

By Pastor Brock Has spring sprung? It sure feels like it. A few weeks ago I noticed the Mountain Laurels blooming with their beautiful purple flowers. Seemed a bit early but I was okay with that. For me spring so much represents new life. Buds are blooming, grass is greening, trees are starting to leaf out, and new life is exploding everywhere we turn. God seems to be on display that much more. The poet Gerard Manley Hopkins wrote, “The world is charged with the grandeur of God.” And in so many ways God’s grandeur is never more present than during spring. The Apostle Paul tells us that new life is available to us as well. “Anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!” (2 Cor. 5:17). This new life, this new creation is available to us through Jesus Christ. There are so many different ways to express and live out that new life here at Gruene. Below is information on just a few of the many different mission, outreach and service opportunities to get involved with. Please email me at if you want more information about these opportunities or any others. Or flag me down on Sunday and let’s talk. I absolutely love visiting with people about ways to get plugged in, ways to get fed (and to feed), ways to continue to tap into this new life offered us through Jesus.

Community Garden Here At Gruene Speaking of new life. What is that growing over there next to the pavilion at Motown? That would be sugar snap peas, radishes, lettuce, spinach, carrots and LOVE, lots of love. The community garden here at Gruene has started to grow. The kiddos and teachers from Gruene Tree Learning Center have been working hard the last couple of weeks prepping the garden and planting seeds, some of which have sprouted already. These kiddos are learning in the dirt, I love that. It is so exciting that this new ministry opportunity has taken off. The garden will represent so much of what God is doing so beautifully here at Gruene. Bringing people together in the name of Jesus, feeding hungry people and attracting folks from the surrounding community. Eventually the garden will supply fruits and vegetables to be given away in Steve’s Pantry. We envision it being open to the greater community where folks can work a section of the garden. This will be open to neighbor groups, community groups, social groups; basically folks who want to gather and grow. Grow their own food and grow in community. If you want to learn more about the community garden and how to help out please email Pastor Brock at

“Be The Church” coming later this spring Be The Church”, what is that? Be The Church is a day that we, as a community of faith, collectively take all that you love about this place outside the walls, out into the community. There will be a handful of different service opportunities for you to take part in. Your Missions Team has started planning for this event, stay tuned for more details. Also, they need your help. They are always looking for great service opportunities to include in Be The Church, especially new ones. If you know of a ministry, agency, non-profit, group of folks, etc. who could use a bit of help we would love to hear from you. Please email any suggestions and information to Pastor Brock at

Steve’s Pantry Update 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. If you want more information about Steve’s Pantry and/or want to volunteer, please email Melissa 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

Backpack Ministry Update Gruene’s Operation Backpack is a "gap" food program that provides weekend food supplies for food-insecure families within Comal ISD. Volunteers are always busy loading bags of food and delivering them to schools. If you want to learn more about Backpack Ministry or want to help out 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. Blessings, Pastor Brock

(Contact Rev. Brock Gillman at

And God said, “Let the earth sprout vegetation, plants yielding seed, and fruit trees bearing fruit in which is their seed, each according to its kind, on the earth.” And it was so. The earth brought forth vegetation, plants yielding seed according to their own kinds, and trees bearing fruit in which is their seed, each according to its kind. And God saw that it was good. Genesis 1:11-12 GTLC is so excited to report that the Gruene Garden is in full swing and the GTLC kids are loving it! Our journey of being apart of this project is to experience a garden from beginning to end…or better yet food! We have worked the dirt, carried bags of soil, laid the soil, and planted the seeds…so now we water…maintain… and watch it grow! Bon Appetite!

GTLC Registration 2017-2018… On Your Mark…Get Set…GO! And we are off and planning for the next school year…just like that! And a planning we will do with a waitlist of over 110 kids… To start on February 13th we opened up registration to our current families…at 7:30 am! As we walked up to the school at 6:50, there were already families waiting in a line to sign up their kids. I was so humbled as I thanked the families for rising so early to make sure their spot at GTLC was secured. I also continue to pray for those families on our waitlist and in the community who are looking for a safe and loving place to call their preschool home! On that note, can you pray for us as we look for other classroom options to have more kids? God likes to grow ideas in my heart…He is something else! He drives me… He nudges me…one step and day at a time. Rebecca Goossens Director Gruene Tree Learning Center (GTLC)

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, have access to an online bible and PUSHPAY our electronic giving. Go to the apps store on your phone and search for Gruene UMC.

March 24th New or gently worn prom dresses are needed for girls in need in the New Braunfels/Gruene area. Please drop off your clean, donated dress at Celebrations Bridal located a 275 S. Seguin Avenue, New Braunfels or at Gruene UMC starting March 12th. Dresses (prom or bridesmaid) (long or short) are needed. sizes 0 - 32, Dresses size 16 and up are particularly needed. Your donation will enable high school girls in need of assistance to enjoy an evening of memories "just like all the other girls." Dresses will be distributed at a Say Yes to the Prom Dress event at Gruene UMC on March 24th and 25th. For more info email Cheryl at

Palm Sunday April 9th All Service Holy Thursday April 13th @7p.m. at FUMC (572 W. San Antonio St.) Good Friday April 14th @7 p.m.

at Gruene UMC Good Friday is an amazing service. Join us as we place our prayers on the “wailing wall� and remember the loving sacrifice Jesus gave us. His love never fails! We are glad to continue the tradition of sharing in Holy Week services with First UMC New Braunfels! There will be child care provided at both locations.

Stephanie DeVault - Children’s Director

Rev. Karen Horan - Pastor

Brandi Carnes - Nursery Director

Rev. Brock Gillman - Associate Pastor Nadia Hoffman – Administrative Assistant

Rebecca Goossens - GTLC Director 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,

March 2017 news  
March 2017 news