Friday, July 17, 2009

RUMC Newsletter article

I feel like I am finally beginning to catch-up. Isn’t that what summer is supposed to be for? My office is (after moving back to my original office) slowly getting organized. Pictures are on the walls, and most everything is put away – Those of you who doubt miracles shouldn’t anymore. Over the last few days I have gotten about 50% of the next years sermon’s planned – still trying to come up with an idea for advent. The overall theme for the coming year is being taken from my sermon on July 26th – Life IN Christ. Everything we will be doing will talk about how we can have Life IN Christ.

Even more exciting is some of the “stuff” that is growing under the surface. We are not just tweaking the newsletter – a whole new source of information is coming, one that will better link our church together. Along with that, I am going to begin sending out a weekly email to anyone who would like to receive it – that will begin no later than the first week of September. Make sure we have a current e-mail address for you by sending it to

Tom Labus is working on revamping our Website – he saw my column in last month’s Ridge News and has volunteered to help us get it going. I can’t tell you how thrilled I am with that. THANKS TOM! As if that isn’t enough, he is also working on helping us get the technology in place so that we can start doing a live webcast of at least one service on Sunday mornings. We will start with streaming audio as soon as we can, and then, once the kinks are worked up, and we can acquire some equipment, we will begin streaming video as well. That is exciting!

I also mentioned in my last column that I would like to start using illustrations during our traditional worship services. The next Sunday a number of you stopped me to talk about it and shared all kinds of ideas. We will be putting a proposal together in the next few weeks, outlining what it will take to make PowerPoint possible during my sermons. I can’t wait because I know that many of us learn visually rather than simply through hearing, so I know that it will enhance the worship experience for many of you.

One finally thing that I am excited about: as we move more and more into our Cluster group (the Mid-Lake Cluster comprising of Ridge, Dyer, Griffith, Crown Point, Cedar Lake and Merrillville UMC’s), I keep finding myself saying – “We can do this even better as a cluster.” I keep finding opportunities, that as we grow together, will make us more effective in ministry. If you want more information about our cluster, talk to Keith Howard – he will be glad to share all about it.

Summer is supposed to be about slowing down. Here at Ridge, we are gearing up for an exciting year!


Many of you have been asking me when I am planning on putting together another tour. Well, now that the flood relief efforts are well under way I am excited to announce that I am planning a Pilgrimage to Italy in September of 2010. I have never been, so I am looking forward to this opportunity to visit Rome and so much more. If you are interested in the journey, drop me a note, or join me for an informational meeting at Ridge Church on Tuesday, September 22nd at 7:00 pm in room 106.

Catching Up

Wow, I can't believe that it has been a month since my last post.

I have been very busy these last few weeks. The best news is that I am now PAST president of the Munster Rotary Club. What a great title to have. I look forward to the day when I can say I am Past President of LARRI, but that term has another year to go!

Jessica got back last weekend from her adventures in Australia. We are enjoying having her home, but I think she is looking forward to heading back to Indy in a few weeks. You can read about her adventures here.

LARRI (Lakeshore Area Regional Recovery), the flood recovery group, has been very busy. We hired a new director and have begun really making traction beyond the muck and guts to the restoring and rebuilding. However, we have a long way to go. We have always said that things would take two years to get finished -- Ten months since the flood, I can tell you right now, that is not going to happen!

We are working on a big anniversary "celebration" to take place in mid September. As the plans get firmed up, I will let you all know!

We had a great celebration for the 3rd of July. Ridge Church sold hamburgers, hot dogs, brats, etc and made quite a bit of money. The money raised pays for our Vacation Bible School (which is going on right now!). We provide the VBS free to the community. The following weekend was the Music Fest and the youth sold pop and corn on the cob. It might be time to find a new gig, since the new festival is drawing a different crowd from the old Jazz and Blues Fest that was held on the Ridge.

Tomorrow the youth leave on their mission trip to Kentucky. They are once again working with Appalachian Service Project. I did ASP when I was a youth.

Tonight, Lindsey, Jessica and I are going to the Theatre at the Center to see Footloose. I will let you know what I think . . .