This booklet was mailed to the church membership the week after Easter. If you didn't get a copy and would like a print version, stop by the church office or give us a call.
“The time has come,” he said. “The kingdom of God has come near. Repent and believe the good news!” -Mark 1:15, NIV
God has blessed the congregation of Shalimar United Methodist Church since our humble beginnings in a concession stand at the drive-in theater back in 1951. Our church and community have grown and changed in the last sixty-seven years, yet our mission to make disciples of Jesus Christ has stayed the same. As we look to the future, we have new and exciting plans for our church to affirm at our Church Conference on June 2, 2019.
January of this year, I shared a vision during the 21 Days of Stirrings, that we would seek to reach 1,000 people meeting weekly to grow as disciples by 2022. Can we imagine 1,000 persons growing in their faith each week all over our church campus? This would include Sunday school classes, small groups, Bible studies, 12x12 teams, prayer groups, Emmaus reunion groups, and a wide variety of ages including children, youth, and adults ranging from young to senior adults.
My duties as the presiding elder of this congregation are to: 1) preach the word, 2) offer sacraments of Holy Communion and Baptism, and 3) order the church. Everything we do in the church needs to be done in order. The ordering of our congregation is essential to counter a world that often lives in confusion, fear, chaos, and disruption. Our prayer team often prays, “We seek to do all with unity, Godly order, good communications, and cooperation.” Order is in keeping with the words of the Apostle Paul which says, “For God is not a God of disorder but of peace—as in all the congregations of the Lord’s people.” (1 Corinthians 14:33, NIV). As we move into the future, we seek order and clear plans for our church.
Our elected lay leadership seeks to order our church life for both the present and the future. Our Master Planning Committee is one of the teams we have elected to help us plan. This team comprised of laity, staff, and clergy have worked for over two years to aid our church to continue making disciples. This team has worked tirelessly seeking constant input, frequent conversation and dialogue, and regular updates to our Church Council. In all my years, I have never seen a team devote so much time and commitment to prepare for the future. The past two years of preparations have produced incredible fruit.
The formal period of planning is over and now we look to our congregation to help make it happen! I invite you to our Church Conference where our congregation will vote on these plans for the future. I enthusiastically support the plan because it has involved so many from our congregation in the process.
As we journeyed through the Gospel of Mark during Lent this year, Mark 1:15 came to my mind many times. Jesus’ first recorded words are, “The time has come...The kingdom of God has come near. Repent and believe the good news!” (NIV). As I read these words I think of Shalimar UMC. There is a great Kingdom opportunity in front of us! Our time to plan for the future is now!
This booklet contains the fruits of our laity’s labor. At the end of the booklet, you’ll find information about meetings we are holding so you can watch, listen and ask questions. Please mark those dates on your calendar. It’s important to us that everyone is involved. Please keep all we do at Shalimar UMC in your prayers and plan to be present for our Church Conference, June 2 at 10:30 (Note: All Members of Shalimar UMC have a vote). The Master Plan is a good orderly plan. Is it possible to make it happen? I think about one of my favorite passages, “Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine,” (Ephesians 3:20, NIV). The time is now to live into the future of making disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world!
Dr. Philip E. McVay, Lead Pastor