Pastor’s Note

Pastor’s Note

Each week Lead Pastor Andy Bryan shares what’s on his heart. His messages both inform and inspire. Subscribe and stay ‘in the know’ about all things Manchester UMC!

Outward…Our Relationship With Our Neighbors - The three relational focus points we’ve been talking about are “upward” on our relationship with God, “inward” on our relationship with our self, and “outward” on our relationship with our neighbor. This week, we turn…
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Inward…Self Care and Sabbath - I think we all understand that caring for yourself is so very important. Finding the right balance among all of life’s competing demands can be tricky, and lately there has been a very strong emphasis…
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Upward…Our Relationship with God - God is first.When it comes to relationships that define us, our relationship with God is primary. Foremost in our thoughts should be aligning our lives with God. We often think of this as an “upward”…
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ACS-Fall-2021 Upward, Inward, Outward! - When John Wesley was in college, he began a practice that became central to the Methodist movement. He would meet regularly with a small group of his friends to study scripture, serve the poor, give…
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God’s Holy Mountain - I’m a Missouri boy. I have lived forty-five of my fifty years in Missouri. The five years I was not living in Missouri, I was living in west-central Illinois. When we moved, one of the…
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Is Seeing Believing? - This week’s Pastor’s Note comes from Rev. Jim Peich…  Is Seeing Believing?It seems like there’s not much that isn’t “caught on video” these days. In fact, some of the most impactful moments over the past half…
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It’s Still Homecoming! - This coming Sunday will carry some mixed feelings for me. And probably for some of you as well.Back in the early summer, when it looked like the vaccination numbers were going to keep going up…
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Season of Creation - On Sunday we are going to begin a new worship series called “Season of Creation.” Some may remember that we did so last year as well. In fact, it may very well become an annual…
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God Doesn’t Give You More Than You Can Handle - This week we will be wrapping up our worship series, “It Ain’t In There” with a look at a phrase that I know you have heard before: God doesn’t give you any more than you can…
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Pastor's Note 8.17 God helps those who help themselves - One thing I have heard several people say about the current Sunday morning worship series is that it has really helped them to think more clearly about the Bible. Thinking about Biblical interpretation is called…
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Love the Sinner, Hate the Sin - The Bible has a lot to say about sin, obviously. There are dozens and dozens of verses about sin and forgiveness, in both testaments. Jesus teaches about sin frequently. From Genesis through to Revelation, sin…
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It Ain’t In There! - When I encounter an idea or a phrase that isn’t Biblical but is being used as if it is, I feel an urge to call it out. And when I do, I usually take a…
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United as One - With the announcement of St. Louis County’s new mask mandate, Manchester United Methodist Church is also bringing back our mask requirement for those who are gathering in the building. While it may feel like a…
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The Audacity of a Criminal’s Request - Our third audacious Biblical character in our series called “The Audacity!” may very well have the most audacious request of any of them. And it’s not so much the request as it is the perspective…
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VBS…Jesus, Catchy Songs, & T-Shirts for Everyone! - This note is being written immediately after Day One of this year’s Vacation Bible School. 2021 is my third summer as the Lead Pastor of Manchester UMC, but this is really the first time I…
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The Audacity! - This week we begin a new worship series called “The Audacity!” We will think together about four New Testament stories centering on people who asked for something from Jesus (or in one case, from his…
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Photo of Greeter shaking hands with a visitor. Welcome, wanted, safe, and secure - While Rev. Andy Bryan is on vacation, the pastor's note was written by Rev. Stephanie Lendt. Prior to COVID19, Manchester UMC’s Welcome Team(folks in the red shirts 😊) were well-trained, and knew what to do in…
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Church and Vacation…Churcation! - Well, it is summer! And for some of us, with summer might come … vacation time! I am used to travelling for summer vacations; I have done so just about every year since I was a…
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Wisdom of God - This week we will be wrapping up our worship series, “The Breath to Sing.” It has been wonderful to focus on the Holy Spirit for a few weeks in our Sunday worship services. Pastor Winter…
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Abundant Weirdness - This week, the Missouri Annual Conference will convene. And it will be weirdness. A “normal” Annual Conference session consists of over a thousand people sitting together in a gigantic convention center doing the business of the…
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Redemption - We are coming in to week three of our “Breath to Sing” worship series, a Pentecost Season series in which our attention and focus is on the Holy Spirit. The Spirit is present as a…
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Spiritual Sense - In the same way that sight, taste, touch, hearing, and smell are the ways in which we sense the physical world, we have “spiritual senses” that allow us to sense the divine.John Wesley wrote that…
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Spirit of God - There is a wonderful Holy Spirit song in the Faith We Sing hymnal called simply “Spirit of God.” Verse one of this beautiful song includes some wonderful imagery: Spirit of God, bright Wind, breath that…
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Ascension - Our most recent Sunday morning worship series, “Becoming Human,” was very christological. That just means that the focus was on Christ. We talked about the process of sanctification, and what it means to think of…
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Love One Another - It is one of the most direct verses in the Bible. It cuts immediately to the core and leaves little room for questions.“Those who say, ‘I love God,’ and hate their siblings, are liars; for…
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Embody - The series title for our Easter Season worship services is “Becoming Human - Embodying Easter.” The series will center on the idea of being truly and fully human.The Nicene Creed (c. 325 CE) claims that…
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Service - It feels rather audacious to preach a sermon about “service” at Manchester UMC, if I’m honest. I mean, “service” is kinda our thing around here, you know what I’m saying? It blows me away when…
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The Light - The physical attributes of light fascinate me. Light diffuses the farther away it travels from the source. The speed of light is a fundamental constant in nature. Light can be bent. Light can be reflected.…
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Prepare the Way - One of the words of Advent is “prepare.” Typically, during Advent we are preparing for gatherings, concerts, parties, special events, and trips to see loved ones. Typically, during Advent our preparations have some very specific interactions…
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At the Threshold At the Threshold - It is amazing how the development of language in and of itself can teach us so much. For example...The English word “Advent” is the term for the four-week season prior to Christmas Day. It comes…
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Advent Candle 2020 “Just One” - “Just One” by Andy Bryan One small act of goodness, one small gesture of grace, one small compassionate word offered in a time of struggle, one smile of understanding, a hand on a shoulder, a random text message just to say hi,one…
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Entirely Sanctified - This week we are wrapping up a month-long series called “Turning the World Upside Down.” And we will do so by wrapping up the letter we have been studying all month, Paul’s first letter to…
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Why We Do What We Do - Manchester UMC’s “Turning the World Upside Down” series has only just begun, and it is already amazing! Sunday’s sermon included an interactive moment in which those who were worshiping responded to a question that I asked.…
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Manchester UMC Chapel Turning the World Upside Down - “These people who have been turning the world upside down have come here also, and Jason has entertained them as guests. They are all acting contrary to the decrees of the emperor, saying that there…
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eNews Sign-Up - Stay in the know on all things related to Manchester UMC! Sign up for weekly editions of eNews, distributed via email on Fridays. You'll also receive Pastor's Note, the weekly blog from Lead Pastor Andy…
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