Monday, November 9, 2009
Palmer and Wasilla Visit
Palmer Fellowship - I had heard that finding the Palmer worship location was a challenge and it was. Armed with GPS and asking a man walking his dog I still had trouble finding it. But when I did there was music drawing me in as the band rehearsed.
Two things were striking about Palmer’s worship space: a beautifully decorated worship table and the excellent music group. I have to say that the addition of a soprano saxophone added tremendously to the music environment.
The Palmer Fellowship has struggled to hang on to their dream of becoming a UM Church. They receive excellent leadership from Pastors Robert and Tori Hicks. I encouraged them to participate in our UM connection and tell their story. I'd like to bring their band to one of our Anchorage gatherings.
Wasilla Christ First UMC. For children’s time they have a separate carpet in front for the kids to sit on. It gives them their special space and keeps them in one location for the message. Not everyone can reproduce this idea but their remodeled worship space drastically changes the worship experience for the better. Chairs instead of pews give them a flexibility for all kinds of ministries.
For years people lamented that this church was too far from town. Now the town has grown to the church! This church has a contagious spirit and has captured a vision. They feel they could become the second largest UM church in Alaska in five years! Wow. I tested this with the congregation and they enthusiastically embrace it. They have 13 acres and a new spacious parking lot and 100 in worship. What a joy to be with this vital and alive congregation.
Grace and peace,