Last Saturday night Larry and Carol Thomas of Wimberly, Texas climbed onto the roof of their house as flood waters engulfed their home. Mr. Thomas, a 74-year-old who has suffered a stroke, was not able to hold on and was washed away by the raging waters. Mrs. Thomas was able to cling to a satellite dish and cable for some 6 hours, singing hymns, until a neighbor rescued her in a boat. Mr. Thomas’ body was recovered and identified on Wednesday.
The Thomases were active members of Wimberly United Methodist Church, and Ms. Thomas teaches in the pre-school of another nearby United Methodist Church. As many as 20 families of Wimberly UMC have lost their homes as a wall of water came down the Blanco River, according to church pastor Rev. Dana Hamilton.
There are millions of others affected by these historic floods across Texas and Oklahoma, and even northern Mexico. I believe the death count is at 25 this morning. Surely, with forecasts for continuing rain and flooding, and as relief efforts continue, that number will climb.
Please pray for the people affected by these and other recent storms. I tell you these United Methodist stories to remind you that many United Methodists and United Methodist congregations have been affected…and that many United Methodist individuals, churches, and relief efforts will be in ministry with those of every faith tradition who have lost loved ones, homes, and livelihoods. If you feel led to give, we will forward your gifts through the United Methodist Committee on Relief, which will distribute grants to the wide range of recent U. S. disasters. (Of course, as I recently reported, UMCOR has also sent grants for relief in Nepal.)
This Sunday will be an exciting day from morning to evening! We celebrate Trinity Sunday, the Sunday after Pentecost, in our worship. We’ll briefly introduce our summer interns. We’ll also receive the 2015 Confirmation Class into full membership, and they will be recognized and supported in all three worship services. At 11:00 music will be the message as the choir brings us Mendelssohn’s Psalm 42. Come back Sunday evening for our annual Pig Pickin’ with lots of bluegrass and BBQ, and loads of fun and fellowship. I love this event because it brings all ages together for good food and good fun! There’ll be info on upcoming summer opportunities.
And be sure on Sunday, if you haven’t done so, to sign up to be part of Community Impact Day. If you don’t have an FUMC t-shirt, pick one of those up too, so that all of us going into the community next Saturday, June 6, will be wearing those red shirts that say, “What if church left the building?” The church of Jesus Christ, of course, does leave the building! We seek to be true to our mission as the “living Body of Christ!”
Oh, one more thing. Time is running out to have pictures made for the new directory. We want every person with a connection to First Church to be included. Call the office (456-9475), or check at the desk on Sunday. Be included, and help make our book complete!
See you Sunday…be connected!