A Growing Congregation

This Sunday is Confirmation Sunday, a significant and meaningful day in the life of any congregation, including Manchester. It is the day we celebrate with a group of young people who are professing their faith publicly for the first time. It is the day we celebrate their decisions to become full members of the Body of Christ.

This Easter season, we have been working our way through the book of James, thinking about what it means to be and build the church in community together. The theme of the entire series is that faith, without works, is dead. And one of the most important works we can do is inviting, welcoming, and celebrating new members in the community. On Sunday, we have an opportunity to do just that.

This year’s Confirmation Class has been meeting and studying and working together for weeks now, forming and deepening connections, becoming community, discerning their beliefs, and sharing with one another. And they have decided they are ready to become members of the church, and specifically members of this congregation. 

It is a day worth celebrating! 

People are created for belonging. God made us as relational beings, in God’s own relational image. Congregations that are growing are those who have figured out a way to meet that deep felt need, the need to belong. And while there are some congregations who meet that need through uniformity of belief, Manchester UMC takes the more difficult way of unity amid diversity. 

The feeling of community and belonging that Manchester UMC fosters does not arise from an insistence that all think alike or look alike or dress alike, etc. The feeling of community and belonging within this congregation arises from love. The unconditional, eternal love of God.

And so I hope ALL Y’ALL come to worship this weekend. Confirmation Sunday should set attendance records every year, reflecting the congregation’s eagerness to celebrate our newest members. We need each other! I’ll see y’all in church.


Pastor's Note

The Missouri Annual Conference

Every year, United Methodists from all across the Missouri Conference gather together for our annual meeting. This year, the meeting will be Friday June 9 through Sunday June 11 in St. Charles. Manchester UMC will be represented there by Revs. Andy Bryan, Phil Estes, Winter Hamilton, and Jim Peich. Our

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My Chains Fell Off

Conversion is a key idea in Wesleyan theology, and was a central part of the faith stories of both John and Charles. And conversion isn’t about going from “non-Christian” to “Christian.” Conversion can happen in the lives of believers, also. Conversion is a change that is worked in the lives

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Pastor's Note

Charles in Charge

Charles Wesley was the poet of the birth of Methodism. In his lifetime, he composed thousands of hymns! His beautiful words captured the theology, the spirit, and the energy of the Methodist movement with vivid elegance. Charles was one of the children of Susannah Wesley, who was a profound spiritual

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