Thursday, March 29
Maundy Thursday Service
7:00 PM Central
Friday, March 30
Good Friday Service
7:00 PM Southwest
Saturday, March 31
Easter Egg Hunt Easter Eggstravaganza
Saturday, March 31 Sunday April 1 Sunday, April 1 Sunday, April 1
P3 Worship Sunrise Son-rise Service Easter Service Easter Service
6:00 PM 7715 Lynnhaven 7:00 AM Southwest 8:30 AM Central 10:30 AM Southwest
Sunday, April 1
10:45 AM Central
Sunday, April 1
Resurrection Sunday Service (Spanish Speaking)
6:30 PM Southwest
Saturday, March 31
1:00 PM Central 2:00 PM Southwest
A NOTE FROM PASTOR ANDY An Invitation I am writing this article as we prepare for an historic gathering of Christ-followers in West Texas at Jones Stadium. The goal of 50,000 folks may or may not be met, but the purpose of seeking God’s face in unity will be accomplished. On the day of Pentecost Acts 2:1 says, “They were all together in one place!” That is the heart of God for us on March 25th. All together we will come together and praise His name; all together we will come together and pray for His purpose to be our purpose; all together we will come together asking Him to pour out His presence and His power upon us. As God responds to us on that night and in the days to come, may all the churches and people of our city and area experience real change. I am also writing on the cusp of Easter with the full hope and belief that God is going to work in our church powerfully this Resurrection Day. If you haven’t decided which service of worship you are going to attend, any of them will be a place where the Risen Jesus, Himself, is going to make His presence known. We start on Saturday night with P3 at 6:00pm and continue early on Sunday with an outdoor Sunrise Sonrise service at 7:00am at the Southwest Campus at the corner of 98th and Frankford. All Easter Sunday we will worship Him: 8:30am @ Central; 10:30am @ Southwest; 10:45 @ Central; 6:30pm @ Southwest. Come and worship the Risen King! After our Resurrection Day celebrations are done, it is time for us as a modern day Methodist congregation to have an honest and open conversation about where our denomination is and where we are in that denomination. On Monday April 16 th at 7pm at Central and on Tuesday April 17th at 7pm at Southwest, we will have two all church meetings to talk about what’s going on in our denomination and what some of our options are at this time. In our United Methodist Book of Discipline we have a very clear statement of faith regarding the identity of Christ and primacy of Biblical authority. For multiple decades our denomination has been in conflict over issues regarding human sexuality. Our current Book of Discipline affirms that homosexual persons are persons of sacred worth and value to God and that the practice of homosexuality is incompatible with Christian faith and teaching. Our Book of Discipline affirms that Christian Marriage is between a man and a woman and that Methodist pastors must practice fidelity in marriage and celibacy in singleness. No Methodist pastor is allowed to be a “self-avowed practicing homosexual.” We are called to love all persons and be in ministry to all persons, but love and God’s grace is not about mere tolerance and acceptance but also about true transformation. These values and standards have been discussed and debated for decades in our denomination. In recent years while our culture has been moving dramatically away from such beliefs, the Methodist Church has remained consistent in upholding Biblical values. In the last two General Conferences 2012 and 2016 the number of delegates believing in the primacy of scripture and holding to orthodox beliefs has actually been increasing because the places where the church is growing numerically globally are places that are far more orthodox and conservative that many Methodists in the United States. While those Methodists who disagree with our Book of Discipline have always had the freedom to leave our denomination at any time, they have chosen instead in recent years to begin to act out in militant disobedience to our stated values and standards. Two whole jurisdictions and several annual conferences have made declarations that they will not follow the Book of Discipline on matters of human sexuality; and in July of 2016 the Western Jurisdiction elected Karen Oliveto, a practicing homosexual pastor, to be a Bishop. While our United Methodist Judicial Council has declared her consecration illegal, our system fails in its current ability to hold Oliveto, the conferences, and jurisdictions accountable.
At General Conference in 2016 the Council of Bishops were called upon to create a “Finding A Way Forward Commission” to recommend options for how we move forward as a denomination. In the fall of 2017 the Commission presented its first official report to the Council of Bishops. Their report presented three sketches: Option #1 Accountability Option: Affirm the current Book of Discipline’s language and a way to make accountability happen. The church policy book says the practice of homosexuality “is incompatible with Christian teaching” and lists officiating at a same-gender union or being a “self-avowed practicing” gay clergy member as chargeable offenses under church law. Option #2 Local Option: Remove the Book of Discipline's restrictive language and place a high value on contextualization. This sketch also specifically protects the rights of those whose conscience will not allow them to perform same-gender weddings or ordain LGBTQ people. Option #3 Restructure Option: Create multiple branches of the church that have clearly defined values such as accountability, contextualization and justice. This model would maintain shared doctrine and services and one Council of Bishops. In January and February our Annual Conference had listening sessions where we heard from each other how each proposed sketch would affect local congregations. St. Luke’s Administrative Council met and discussed these options, and our Lay Delegates and Administrative Council Chair were a part of the listening session held at Lakeridge UMC on February 11th. Our consensus at both the local church level and seemingly at the Annual Conference level was clearly Option #1 above, even though we have huge questions about its feasibility. The last week of February our Council of Bishops met and basically neglected to consider Option #1 and focused their discussions exclusively on Options #2 and #3. This is very disheartening and disappointing. Their official recommendation to next year’s delegates to a specially called General Conference (February 2019) is due 180 days prior, which means July 1, 2018. I am praying and hoping for radical change in their approach because no matter what our General Conference votes in 2019 our Council of Bishops are the ones who have the mandate to lead us. Their current lack of resolve to uphold our Book of Discipline is truly tragic. By the way our Bishop, Bishop Bledsoe, has been a strong proponent of accountability and faithfulness to the Biblical standards we hold. So I close out this article, by asking you to pray and to make time to come and talk about these issues at the all church meetings on April 16th and April 17th. Your fellow servant in Christ,
Thank You from the Wesley Foundation Staff & Students Dear St. Luke’s UMC Our many thanks for the delicious grilled hamburgers, vegan burgers & sausage for out students at Wesley Foundation after underground worship service. They were so good & our students “love” food! We loved the fire pit and roasting marshmallows. It was a fun night of fellowship! Thank you to the grill masters Andy Hurst & Todd Sons and to Andy for praying over our Haiti team. We appreciate all you do for Tech Wesley and the Kingdom. You are all a blessing to us,
Penny & the Wesley Foundation Staff & Students
A NOTE FROM PASTOR MATT Dear St. Luke’s Family, Can you believe it? Easter is only a few days away on April 1st. No foolin’! I'm looking forward to the Resurrection Celebration we have planned for you and the friends you'll bring with you this year. The message of our Resurrection Hope is that that we are created for more than we ever dreamed possible. We are made for the power of Jesus to live in us and through us. That power should be reflected in our joy and relationships every day and others should notice it! Here are four specific things that you can do as we prepare to celebrate Easter this next weekend: 1. Invite your friends! It's always amazed me that although I know many of my friends are LOOKING for a church to attend on Easter, I still feel nervous when inviting them. Maybe it's the fact that we all feel a bit nervous when talking about things that are important to us. The truth is, when you invite a friend to join you for church on Easter they very often will come, and even if they cannot, they'll appreciate the fact that you thought of them. Our church website, www.egrace.us, has the times of the Easter services - which are listed for you at the bottom as well. Additionally, we've mailed out Easter invitations to many of your neighbors. I encourage you to ask around your office and neighborhood, "Did you get an invitation in the mail from my church?" If they say, “Yes,” then that makes it really easy for you to invite them. If they say “No,” then you have already started the conversation to invite them! 2. Bring your friends to the worship service that best fits THEIR schedule and not yours. Easter is the easiest time of year to bring someone to church. However, if they cannot make the worship service you normally attend, chose one that fits their schedule. After all, this is about introducing new people to Jesus, not about any of us that already know Him. You and I should be able to worship anytime. 3. Help out in any way that you can. If you see ANYTHING that needs to be done - a piece of paper that needs to be picked up, a person who needs a question answered, a restroom that needs to be cleaned - I encourage you to "just do it." One of the great characteristics of St. Luke’s Lubbock is the way that we all pull together to accomplish whatever is needed. 4. Personally celebrate the good news of Easter starting now. Just think of it: because of the Easter resurrection our own past is forgiven, our life is worth living and we have a future in heaven! Romans 3:22 says, "We are made right in God's sight when we trust in Jesus Christ to take away our sins. And this is true for everyone who believes, no matter who we are." (NLT) Begin praying for new lives to be given to Jesus on Easter Sunday. I'm looking forward to sharing the hope and the promise of the resurrection of Jesus Christ with you on Easter Sunday and beyond!
Saturday, March 31st Easter Egg Hunt at Central at 1pm Easter Eggstravaganza and Egg Hunt at Southwest at 2pm Sunday Easter Celebrations 8:30am - Central 10:45am - Central 10:30am - Southwest 6:45pm – Southwest - Spanish Speaking 5
CHILDREN’S MINISTRIES Who is your tribe? It is so important to surround yourself with a few people who you know will encourage you and tell you the honest truth when you need it. Then to also have other people you know that will be there for you when you need them. A close circle and an outer circle. Both are equally important. But your tribe and the church are two different things. Our tribe can be a group of people that we rely on and we don’t add anyone to the group until we know them really well. We want to make sure they are dependable, reliable, and trustworthy before we add them to our tribe. The church is a place where anyone is welcome and wanted at anytime. We want to reach new people to be a part of our church every day and we cannot do that if we do not let new people in. We are all at different seasons in our lives. When you come to church are you in the season where you are looking and needing to feel welcome and wanted? If so we welcome you! Or are you in the season where it is your turn to extend that welcome to others? If you need help learning how to do this, call me! Next time before you come to church ask yourself this question. What am I expecting from church today? Your expectations before you even arrive determine the outcome. And even without realizing it, your expectations rub off on your children. Something my dad always told me that has stuck with me, “You get out of church what you put into it.” If you are trying to learn something you will. What will you learn the next time you step through the church doors? God is talking. Are you listening? Blessings,
March 31st – 1:00 pm – Easter Egg Hunt @ Central 2 - 4 pm – Easter Eggstravaganza @ SW April 1st – Happy Resurrection Day (No Choir Practice or Kids Live) April 20th – Family Frenzy 6 – 8 pm @ Central May 6th – All Church Picnic @ SW after services May 20th – Kids Live Family Event
Download the free Parent Cue App
June 4th – 8th – VBS 9am – Noon @ Central June 23rd – Family Frenzy Overnight 8 pm – 7 am (Girls Slumber Party @ Central, Boys Camp-In @ SW) *June 25th – 29th – One Way 4-6 Camp @ Ceta July 9th – 13th – Sports Camp 6 – 8 pm @ SW *July 16th – 20th – Whoz We R Camp (4th – 6th Grade) @ Ceta July 23rd – 27th – Music Camp – 9am – Noon @ Central *July 30th – Aug 1st – Lil’ Ceta 3 @ Ceta
(Available for IOS and Android Devices) .
*Half Scholarships available for all Ceta camps.
Contact D’Lea or Alli for a copy of the Spring & Summer St. Luke’s Kids Calendars. Check out our website: stlukeskids.com, or get added to our Children’s Ministries Facebook page. Also sign up for Remind101 by downloading the app and joining our class: @stlukekids.
Coming In April:
CHILDRENâ€™S MINISTRIES I donâ€™t know about you but one of my favorite characteristics of God is His protection. He protects the Israelites time and time again in the Bible even though they could not see it at the time. Take a minute and look at your own life; you will see that God has protected you as well. God has protected me from car accidents, dumb money decisions, toxic relationships, and my list could go on. My favorite story in the Bible about Godâ€™s protection is about three Hebrew boys with strange names Shadrach, Meschach and Abedneggo. One day the king decided to build a huge image made of gold that stood 90 feet high. To understand how tall this is, imagine 15 men all standing one on top of the other to make a tall tower. It sure was big! King Nebuchadnezzar then made an announcement. "People of all languages, when you hear the music, you must bow down and worship the statue because I have said so. Whoever does not obey and worship the statue will immediately be thrown into a fiery furnace." The problem with this is God does not want us to worship anything or anyone other than Him. After all, he is God, He made us, and He loves us so much. He came to earth and died for us and cares about every little thing in our lives. Why would we want to pray or worship something that isn't real, something that can't answer our prayers or help us? To worship a big pile of gold like the one that king Nebuchadnezzar set up is silly. The gold can't hear, see, or care about anything or anyone. So the next time the music played everyone stopped what they were doing and they bowed down to worship this idol. Everyone that is, except for Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. Some of the king's workers (that were jealous that Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego had such good jobs) saw that they would not bow down to the image so they immediately ran to tell the king. When king Nebuchadnezzar heard the news he was very angry. He immediately ordered that Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego be brought to him to explain their actions. The men were brought before the king and Nebuchadnezzar said to them, "Is it true, Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, that you will not bow down and worship the image of gold that I have made? Just in case there was a mistake I will give you another chance. When the music plays again you will be ready and bow down to the image, and if you don't this time you will be thrown into a fiery furnace. Then what god will be able to save you?" Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego looked at each other and replied to the king, "O Nebuchadnezzar, we did not make a mistake nor will we apologize for not bowing down. If we are thrown into the furnace, the God we worship will save us, and he will rescue us. But even if he doesn't, we want you to know, that we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up." That made Nebuchadnezzar even more mad. Right away he ordered the furnace to be heated way hotter than it usually was and commanded some of the strongest soldiers to take Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego to throw them in the fire. The soldiers took the three men just as they were straight to the furnace. The men were wearing all their clothes including robes, their shirts and pants underneath that, and turbans on their heads. These things would catch fire very easily in the fire. As the soldiers were pushing the men into the furnace the flames of the fire killed the soldiers, because the fire was so hot and Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego fell into the hot, hot furnace. Then king Nebuchadnezzar jumped to his feet in amazement and asked his advisors, "Weren't there only three men thrown into the fire?" They replied, "O, yes king." He said, "Look! I see four men walking around in the fire, untied and unhurt, and the fourth looks like some kind of angel!" Nebuchadnezzar then came as close as he could to the furnace and shouted in the doorway, "Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, follower of the Most High God, come out! Come here!" So the three men walked out of the furnace without any burns, no hairs on their head burned, all their clothes perfectly fine, and no smell of fire on them at all. At that moment Nebuchadnezzar knew that they worshipped a real God not some fake statue. God had sent an angel to protect them from harm, and even more importantly he realized that they truly believed and trusted in God. They were willing to die rather than serve or worship any god except their own God. So from that day on the king made an announcement that all the people, people of all languages could not say anything bad about Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego's God or they would be badly punished. The king then gave the three men even better jobs than they already had for the province of Babylon. So the next time you feel stuck between a rock and hard place remember the three Hebrew boys with the weird names. God protected them and he will surely protect you. He is always there just call out to Him. Blessings,
MUSIC MINISTRY Easter Sunday will be upon us very soon, and all of us in the Music Ministry are looking forward to sharing our music and leading our church family in celebrating the resurrection of Jesus. In preparation for this celebration, why not learn about the historicity of Jesus’ resurrection? In this day and age, with the advantage of technology at our fingertips, we can equip ourselves with knowledge that will help us share the gospel. To learn more about the historicity of the resurrection, go to YouTube and look up “Evidence for the Resurrection (Dr. William Lane Craig).” He is gives a very insightful speech about evidence for the resurrection in light of today’s culture. Many, many thanks to the Methodist Men for hosting another successful Pancake Supper. We raised nearly $2,400 for the St. Luke’s Singers’ choir trip and served around 215 plates of delicious pancakes and bacon. It was a delight to roam around the room and talk with all of the satisfied “customers.” Not one complaint…probably because everyone was busy eating! I made sure to do a thorough quality check of the food by eating several pancakes myself. I even learned a new technique from Mac Hall: wrap two pieces of bacon in a pancake, dip it in syrup and take a bite. I did this with several pancakes to make sure I got the technique correct. I am now an expert! We saw an increase of Maedgen guests attend the Pancake Supper. On Thursday afternoon before the Pancake Supper, Andy Hurst and I personally handed 150 tickets to parents waiting to pick up their children after school. Many people were touched that St. Luke’s would be so generous. This was possible due to the generosity of St. Luke’s Sunday school classes purchasing bundled tickets to give to guests. Let’s pray that this will open doors to those people who need a church home. Sometime in the future, you may notice that the choir’s appearance will be just as brilliant and inspiring as the music they offer during worship. This will be due to a generous donation that the Seeker Sunday school class made to have the choir robes cleaned. The choir would like to express their thanks! I would like to give an update on improvements to the coffee room right next to the narthex at the central campus. The beautiful new serving station was created by Rick Lyons, who attends the SW Campus and whose talented stonework is also seen at the SW Campus. Thanks Rick! The next step in updating the coffee area is to install new blinds on the east side windows where the sun shines through in all it blinding glory. I have contacted vendors and will be making decisions soon. We are also looking at solutions to reduce some of the echo in the room. Finally, let’s all remember that we are approaching two weekends of increased church attendance-Palm Sunday and Easter Sunday. One of St. Luke’s strengths is our hospitality. I often hear testimonies about how friendly and inviting we are. Let’s outdo ourselves this year and not miss one visitor. No one should leave St. Luke’s without being loved and appreciated. Let’s give people a reason to return to St. Luke’s and avoid the mishap captured in the cartoon “After-Service Coffee.” Believe it or not, this actually happens to visitors. May it never be so at St. Luke’s! Laughter for the Soul: A church had a picnic and invited the entire community to come. The Pastor placed a basket full of apples on one end of a table with a sign saying, "Take only one apple please - Remember that God is watching." On the other end of the table was a plate of cookies where one of the children had placed a sign saying, "Take all the cookies you want -- God is watching the apples." This year for our pastor's birthday, the congregation decided to give him a new suit. He was so touched by the gift that the following Sunday he stood before everyone and, with tears in his eyes, announced, "Today I will be preaching to you in my birthday suit." Calendar in Advance: March 29th, Maundy Thursday 7:00 @ Central Campus THIS IS THE TIME WHEN NEWCOMERS CAN GET TO KNOW THE CONGREGATION March 30th, Good Friday 7:00 @ SW Campus April 1st- Easter Sunday. April 14th-15th- St. Luke’s Singer’s Choir Trip to Amarillo, TX April 22- St. Luke’s Singers sing at Central Campus July 23-27, 29- Summer Music Camp Areas to Serve in the Music Ministry Adult Choir, Youth Ensemble, Children’s Choirs, Orchestra, Bells, Praise Band, Sound Crew, Media Crew
6:30 pm Hispanic Service
NEW SERIES BEGINS - SUNDAY, APRIL 8 - SEE YOU THEN
February 18th—April 29th 5pm—7pm St. Luke’s Southwest Campus Register Now: www.daveramsey.com