Last week my family had Christmas early, so I traveled back to Kentucky. We celebrated Christmas, enjoyed games and meals, and of course went to church together. I was working on this blog post for two weeks prior to our trip. So many prayers went in to how to share the new membership process. I overthink everything. I am a certificate holding, professional overthinker. I love how God speaks to my heart in those times of over thinking with laughter and joy that only He can provide.
The sermon series for Advent was called “Going Home.” The scripture was Luke 15, the parable of the prodigal son. The pastor shared, “We have every reason in the world to feel disconnected to each other, but thanks to God’s grace and Jesus, we have one really big reason to feel connected as a body of Christ.” He said, “The church previously had a hymn for the congregation to sing when new members joined. I can think of Martin Luther and other great lyricist, but I personally think of the 2003 Disney Movie Brother Bear.” The big screen then played a skillfully lip synced version of this song. The only thing better than connecting to the heartfelt, humorous video was the unity of laughter echoing through the sanctuary. (Check out Ephesians 4:4-7)
There is a new membership process launching at Messiah in 2016, and it is all about relationships! Whether you are interested in becoming a member or are an existing family member, here are four things everyone needs to know to serve guests or prospective members of Messiah.
- Fill out a Connection Card Any Time. The church staff uses these cards to reach out to guests and help existing members too. People write prayer requests, ask questions about membership, or simply leave an email address. We won’t make house visits or add personal information to email lists, unless it is requested, of course.
- Attend “Getting Started.” This event was formerly called Introduction to Messiah. Now, folks interested in Messiah join a pastor and fellow newcomers in a casual pizza party to find out what we believe and why we do the things we do. Perhaps we should have called this night, Getting Pizza?
- Attend “Getting Connected.” Everyone discovers Messiah at a different place in their faith journey. Meet one-on-one with Wesly, the Connections Coordinator to figure out a next step in getting connected to Jesus and the people of Messiah.
- Now, active LCMS church members can transfer membership and non-LCMS members can take the class “Getting to Know Jesus.” This class is basically a Bible Study using Pastor Paul Schult’s book, Getting to Know Jesus as a guide. Learn about Christianity, ask BIG questions, and spend time in the Word with believers at Messiah.
Messiah exists to connect people to love, learn, and live for Jesus. Please join us in praying over this new process to build meaningful relationships centered in Christ’s love. Help us welcome others to our family through the celebration of life we have through Jesus’ death and resurrection.
“We’re here to share it all.”- Disney’s Brother Bear
By Wesly Pinkston, Messiah’s Connections Coordinator and Summer Camp Coordinator.