Revisions to United Methodist Social Principles

The Social Principles are an effort of the General Conference to address human issues based on a biblical and theological foundation as shown in United Methodist Traditions. The General Conference in 2012 initiated a process to revise the Social Principles. While changes have been made periodically, this is the first comprehensive revision in some time.

In response, the General Board of Church and Society has conducted a series of listening consultations across the connection. Based on that input, the General Conference of the United Methodist Church asked the Board to begin a revision process in 2016. The Board suggested a new document address three goals for the revision of the Social Principles – that they be:

  • More succinct
  • Theologically grounded
  • Globally relevant

A draft of the proposed  Revised Social Principles has been prepared for discussion. Current Social Principles are also available for comparison. This document will be used to frame the conversation about these proposed changes and a series of Public Conversations. Note: The continuing dialogue of the portion of the Social Principles pertaining to Human Sexuality and Equal Rights Regardless of Sexual Orientation are not included in these conversations.

The closest venue is in Lakeland: 9 a.m. – noon, July 28, First UMC – Lakeland. To register, please choose the section of the Social Principles you wish to discuss from this list:

  • The Community of All Creation
    The Nurturing Community
  • The Social Community — SOLD OUT
  • The Political Community
  • The Economic Community
  • The World Community

then click here to register. Note that registration is limited to 54 places per location.

You may also provide input without participation in the Public Conversation by commenting here.

Church-wide Survey

Starting this Sunday, July 8, you are invited to participate in an important part of our Vision Team’s work in clarifying the long-term strategic plan for the church’s future.

This church-wide survey is anonymous, and no matter how long you’ve been at Hyde Park we need your voice. It will take less than 20 minutes, and we ask that you complete it as soon as possible, by no later than July 22. 
This survey is intentionally different from other surveys you may have taken in the past.
 
It builds on the insights we heard from over 200 of you in our recent visioning chats by going deeper into your thoughts and feelings about the church’s mission and work. These questions are designed to have you think about what is vital for us to address in the future, and we thank you for considering each question fully.
Your insights will help us clarify one of the Vision Team’s chief guiding principles: though the world around us is changing, our mission has not, and we must adapt to the challenges of our time to do the work God has called of us. 

Message from Missionaries, Pat and Melenda Edmiston

The Truth will set you free

We speak of INDEPENDENCE as we celebrate America’s freedom. That’s a good thing and we are grateful for those who sacrificed. When we arrived on the mission field they taught us that it was better to be interdependent with the Papua New Guinea people rather than always reflect an independent spirit. We formed relationships and depended on each other for different things in the Alamblak society. It was a blessing.
In our ministry we have had interdependent relationship with people like you. We go – you send; you pray and give – we minister God’s love through His love letter of the good news; you share our joys and burdens as we report back to you.
Because of you more and more people are hearing the truth in their own language and it is God’s Truth that sets them truly FREE.
Thank you for your financial partnership and generosity.
Love and Blessings,
Pat & Melenda
Wycliffe Bible Translators

Dunbar Elementary Partnership

Did you know by the time they reach kindergarten, low-income children are 12-14 months behind their middle-income peers due to lack of health, educational and other resources? This gap only worsens as children age – 80% of low-income children do not have on-grade reading proficiency by 3rd grade. You can help bridge this gap for Tampa Bay children by volunteering at Dunbar Elementary!

Dunbar Elementary is a magnet school less than two miles from Hyde Park United Methodist’s Hyde Park campus. Dunbar is a Title 1 school, meaning the school has a high population of children from low-income families. 92% of the children at Dunbar are from ethnic minorities.

We have two volunteer opportunities available to assist the children at Dunbar Elementary!

  1. Student Mentor: Meet with a student during lunch, after school, or at other times designated by the teacher. Mentors will get to know their student, cheer them on as they learn through the school year, and may help with reading, math or other skills if able.
  2. Administrative Support: Support a Dunbar Elementary school teacher as a volunteer. Duties will vary based on volunteer skills and availability, plus teacher needs. Tasks may include laminating, cutting, organizing files, moving classroom furniture, creating classroom artwork, writing notes to students, providing notes and/or treats to teachers, etc.

Mandatory training is needed before volunteering at Dunbar Elementary. This required instruction will follow the Missions Training Workshop from noon until 2 p.m. Aug. 26 in Hyde Park’s Harnish Activities Center. Dunbar Elementary training will be from 2-3 p.m. RSVP for the training and the lunch that’s included, please complete this form.

All volunteers within the Hillsborough County School System are required to complete a background check; complete yours online using this form.


SAVE THE DATE — DUNBAR TOUR: 10 P.M. AUG. 8

Plan to join us for a tour of Dunbar Elementary with Hyde Park’s volunteer team. Meet at our Hyde Park location at 9:45 to carpool or meet us at the school, 1730 W Union St, Tampa, 33607, at 10 a.m. Click here for more information or to register for the tour.

Vision

Vision

Church-Wide Vision Survey – BEGINS JULY 8

Dear Hyde Park Family – We need your voice. You are invited to participate in an important part of our Vision Team’s work of clarifying the long-term strategic plan for the church’s future.

This survey is anonymous, and no matter how long you’ve been at Hyde Park we need your voice. It will take less than 20 minutes, and we ask that you complete it as soon as possible, but by no later than July 22.

This survey is intentionally different from other surveys you may have taken in the past. These questions are designed to have you think about what is vital for us to address in the future, and we thank you for considering each question fully.

 TAKE SURVEY NOW (starting July 8)

 

Vision Chat Recap


It is with deep gratitude that we express our appreciation to everyone who participated in a Vision Chat this spring.

Close to 200 members of our congregation contributed openly and generously in these important conversations as part of our sustained effort to discern how the Spirit intends to use Hyde Park United Methodist– its people, its service and its worship – to make God’s love real and make disciples, both today and in the future. We had congregation-wide open chats as well as focused meetings with specific groups (the youth, previous leadership, choir and JPT, 20s and 30s

We had chats open to the entire congregation as well as focused meetings with specific groups, including current and former leaders, our 20s and 30s ministry, our youth, small groups, and the Chancel Choir and Joyful Praise Team, just to name a few.

Together, we explored and wrestled with challenging questions about our high calling as Christ’s church in Tampa, asking

  • How can Hyde Park United Methodist deepen its discipleship?
  • How can Hyde Park United Methodist extend its reach into the community and the world?
  • How can Hyde Park United Methodist adapt to cultural changes?

In response, you shared personal anecdotes, perspectives, meditations, observations, and revelations, all of which are shaping and being incorporated into the next step in our listening phase of this initiative: a congregational survey.

This online survey is being developed now and will be rolled out this summer in June or July. We’ll communicate the survey widely and look forward to deepening this conversation with you.

 

What are we doing?

  • Engaging a sustained effort to discern how the Spirit intends to use Hyde Park – it’s people, its service, and its worship – to make God’s love real (John 21:15-17) and make disciples (Matthew 28:19), both today and in the future

Why are we doing this?

  • God is calling Hyde Park UMC to an exciting future: one where we are making God’s love real in all the ways we can, in all the places we can, and to all the people we can

Why now?

  • The world is changing, and people think the world is becoming more separated and more divided.
  • Our mission to Make God’s Love Real hasn’t changed. Our goals of sharing the message of God’s grace and forgiveness, bringing healing to our city and the world, and inviting people to follow Jesus are as urgent as ever.
  • We can no longer assume the church has the same stature, authoritative voice or appeal as it once did in our culture. The world is changing and Tampa is changing, too.
  • Hyde Park UMC can play an important and practical role as repairer and restorer of the divisions we see in the world. (Isaiah 58:12)

What have we done so far?

  • Met with leaders of the church’s ministries
  • Met with the church’s elected committee leaders
  • Met with program staff
  • Asked for the congregation’s “headline” visions
  • Reviewed data on the demographics and engagement of our church members
  • Engaged in focused conversations with nearly 200 church members through Vision Chats

Where are we in the process now?

  • Listening mode and further data gathering – with a congregational survey being distributed in July. We’ll communicate the survey widely and look forward to deepening this conversation with you.

What do we need from the people of Hyde Park?

  • Be in prayer that our congregation hears and discerns the Spirit’s word to us
  • Participate in the upcoming congregational survey
Midweek Message: Adventure Yourself!

Midweek Message: Adventure Yourself!

Dear Hyde Park Family,

Be sure to read the end of today’s Midweek Message for an important word about our upcoming congregational survey, and the way you can participate in the next critical phase of our Vision Team’s work.

SHIPWRECKED!

First, I wish I could fully capture in words the energy coursing through our Hyde Park campus over the past week, as 416 children and 225 volunteers have experienced what I believe is consistently the best Vacation Bible School in our area.

When I first learned that “Shipwrecked!” was this year’s theme, I will admit some initial skepticism. A shipwreck doesn’t exactly elicit images of excitement, hope and joy. But let’s just face it: there are a lot of people – perhaps including you – for whom the best way to describe their lives is like feeling lost on a deserted island of hopelessness and despair.

It is also true that one of the most prevalent metaphors for the church in early Christian tradition was the ship. And if there is anything we know about ships in the Bible, it’s that they frequently encountered storms.

It turns out to be an appropriate image for us after all, for the kinds of storms we face in our lives, in our churches, in our communities, and in our world.

So, perhaps you can benefit from the same reminders that the children have received every day this week. I invite you to read each of these statements and their corresponding Bible verses prayerfully, looking for connections in your own life.

And remember: Jesus Rescues!

Monday’s Bible Point: When you are lonely . . . Jesus rescues!

Bible Story: The Parables of the Lost Coin, Sheep and Son (Luke 15)

Key Verse: “The Lord will hold me close.” (Psalm 27:10)

Tuesday’s Bible Point: When you worry . . . Jesus rescues!

Bible Story: Martha and Martha  (Luke 10:38-42)

Key Verse: “The Lord comes to the rescue each time.” (Psalms 34:19)

Wednesday Bible Point: When you struggle . . . Jesus rescues!

Bible Story: Jesus prays in the Garden of Gethsemane. (Luke 22:39-54; Matt. 26:36-56)

Key Verse: “Be still, and know that I am God!” (Psalm 46:10)

Thursday Bible Point: When you do wrong . . . Jesus rescues!

Bible Story: Jesus welcomes a criminal before dying and coming back to life. (Luke 23:26-24:12)

Key Verse: “Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33)

Friday Bible Point: When you are powerless . . . Jesus rescues!

Bible Story: Peter and John heal a lame man in Jesus’ name. (Acts 3:1-26)

Key Verse: “This is the same mighty power that raised Christ from the dead.” (Ephesians 1:19-20)

“ADVENTURE YOURSELVES IN CHRIST”

One more connection to the shipwreck theme, this one from John Wesley. In 1781, Wesley wanted to give instructions to Christians on strengthening their commitment to Christ through covenant renewal. So, he wrote a pamphlet called “Directions for Renewing our Covenant with God.”

In the introduction, he says our human situation is like that of a person exiled to a deserted island, vulnerable to the effects of sin and evil in and around us. But even in our shipwrecked state, Jesus comes like the pilot of a vessel who comes to rescue us:

“And meeting for a while with a pilot, who offers to transport him safely home, Jesus embarks on an adventure with him and everything he has in his vessel: you should do likewise. Christ offers, if you will venture forth with him, and then he will bring you home, and he will bring you to God.”

Wesley gives this simple command, which is one of my favorite Wesley phrases: “Adventure yourselves in Christ.” I love that he uses adventure as a verb. And my prayer is that you will take whatever your next step is in that adventure, to avail yourself of the lifeline God has given you in Christ to face your fears, overcome your sins, and resist evil in the world.

Indeed, Jesus rescues!

CONGREGATIONAL SURVEY

The next critical phase of the work of our Vision Team is our congregational survey, which will be distributed starting July 8. You will receive it via email and will be able to complete it online. It will take you less than 20 minutes, and we would like you to complete it within a two-week window, by July 22. We hope that all of the adults and teenagers in your household will each complete a survey.

This survey is intentionally different from other congregational surveys you may have taken in the past. It builds on the insights we heard from more than 200 of you in our recent visioning chats by going deeper into your thoughts and feelings about the church’s mission and work. These questions are designed to have you think about what is vital for us to address in the future, and we thank you for considering each question fully.

Your insights will help us clarify one of the Vision Team’s chief guiding principles: though the world around us is changing, our mission has not, and we must adapt to the challenges of our time to do the work to which God has called of us. The questions will give you an indication of the level of depth with which the Vision Team is working.

Grace, Peace, and Blessed Adventuring in Christ,

Magrey

The Rev. Magrey deVega
Senior Pastor, Hyde Park United Methodist

ROGER SCHOLTZ JULY 8

We welcome back to the Hyde Park pulpit the Rev. Roger Scholtz, our interim senior pastor in 2014-15 prior to my return. He will be preaching in the Sanctuary and The Portico on July 8.

To encourage people to hear him, we will be combining the Chapel service into the Sanctuary that morning, as well as showing a video of Roger’s sermon in the 11 Magnolia service. Then, on Tuesday, July 10, Roger will be offering a special workshop on empathy at 6:30 p.m. in the Harnish Activities Center, with dinner available for purchase at 6 p.m. RSVP at hydeparkumc.org/empathy.

MIDWEEK MESSAGE RESUMES IN AUGUST

As I have done in the past, I will be taking a break from writing the Midweek Message during the month of July and will look forward to resuming them in August. Read archived editions of the Midweek Messages here.

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