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Reformation Sunday will be celebrated this Sunday.  It is a day set aside to recognize, remember, and celebrate the Protestant Reformation.  The United Methodist Church officially celebrates Reformation Sunday “with a sense of moving toward unity and community.”

How can we highlight the theme of building community and unity in our lives?  Research on the sense of community suggests that common projects and common efforts build community.  Working together for a goal strengthens the unity needed to keep the community growing.

As we celebrate Reformation Sunday at St. Mark’s, you will also hear about an upcoming opportunity for us to unite and work together to ensure our community continues to grow.  That opportunity will be the 2020 stewardship campaign that begins on Sunday.

Giving congregations are communities that are grounded in spiritual relationships. They work together to start and grow a variety of services and ministries offered to their congregation and neighbors – locally,
domestically and internationally.  St. Mark’s is such a giving congregation.  United together as a community, we have been able to accomplish much more than any of us could achieve individually.

As Christians, we are often called upon to make decisions related to our desired wants versus our actual needs — especially when it involves giving to the church.  It is important to recognize that when we give to St. Mark’s, we help sustain the Christian institution and the community.

In order for our St. Mark’s community to continue honoring God through our work, the daily “nuts and bolts” required to operate a church these days must be available.

As many of you know, “nuts and bolts” refers to the basic, detailed and practical aspects of something.  To provide the “nuts and bolts” for St. Mark’s, both time and money are required.  This week’s sermon will share with you what some of St. Mark’s “nuts and bolts” are.

As we learn about the “nuts and bolts” and you are given the chance to participate in the stewardship campaign, please remember that you should not give out of a sense of obligation, guilt, or shame, but you should give freely and joyously.

“Each one should give, then, as he has decided, not with regret or out of a sense of duty; for God loves the one who gives gladly.”
(2:Corinthians 9:7)

Look forward to seeing you on Sunday,
Diana Starnes