Midweek Message: Creativity in a Time of Crisis

Midweek Message: Creativity in a Time of Crisis

Dear Hyde Park Family,

We continue to be in prayer for you and your loved ones, along with all those affected by the coronavirus. We pray for our health care workers, first responders and government officials as they face this global pandemic. And we pray for workers, business owners and families who are facing financial hardship.

It is in times like these that a church like ours is called to be a beacon of love and an assurance of hope for our community and the world. Here are the many ways that you are part of Hyde Park United Methodist’s efforts to make God’s love real near and far.

  • Our livestream worship services have hundreds joining us in real time, with thousands reached afterwards via social media;
  • Our Open Arms ministry continues in a modified format, balancing the safety of those involved with the serving of meals to our homeless guests. 165 persons were quickly served a bag lunch and bottle of water and dismissed last Sunday using the wide space of the Magnolia parking lot;
  • Children’s Ministries has a “Church at Home” page on our website that will be updated weekly with Bible lessons, videos and ways to connect with your church family. Join the Children’s Ministries Facebook group for lots of weekly fun engagement with Children’s Ministries. And visit our Resources page on the website for helpful tips and articles for parents;
  • Our Bible Project 2020 continues to connect our congregation in a common journey, with 36 of our small groups still meeting regularly in some digital format;
  • Our clergy team broadcasts a brief time of prayer, Scripture reading, and reflection at 9 a.m. weekday mornings on the Hyde Park’s Facebook page, reaching hundreds every day. The Rev. Justin LaRosa is also hosting a time of meditation and prayer at 12:15 p.m. weekdays on The Portico’s Facebook page;
  • Our Little Dresses sewing ministry has partnered with JoAnn Fabrics and is making face masks for health care professionals;
  • Our congregational care ministry has blossomed from 2 to 35 volunteer callers, checking on elderly members who are homebound and isolated;
  • Our New Member Class has been meeting online, and we look forward to receiving them into membership on April 5;
  • Our Merge youth ministry now gathers on Sunday nights through Instagram Live, supports our families through a Parent Ministry Zoom call, and continues Confirmation classes via video conference calls;
  • Our Small Blessings preschool teachers are sharing “virtual circle time” videos for its classes of children, engaging them in a time of playful conversation and learning;
  • Our previously scheduled Seder dinner will continue in an online format, with Rabbi Nathan Farb of Congregation Schaarai Zedek teaching us about this important Jewish observance;
  • A team of lay leaders, including the chairpersons of our major committees, now meets weekly to monitor the church’s financial situation with a vigilant and non-anxious spirit. We are also grateful for the ongoing guidance of our stewardship consultant from Horizons Stewardship.

The history of the church is filled with numerous moments when God summons a spirit of innovation and creativity to respond to significant crises. Adapting our ministries amid the whirlwind of these last two weeks has felt like trying to convert a sailboat into a submarine, but it is happening, by the grace of God.

Thank you for continuing to be part of God’s amazing story, through your prayers and support of Hyde Park United Methodist. We are called to be the church in such a time as this, and God will see us through.

Grace and Peace,


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

Support the Children’s Home

Support the Children’s Home

Support the Children’s Homeflumc-childrenshome2

We share in the support of the Florida United Methodist Children’s Home, typically in months that contain a fifth Sunday.

The Florida United Methodist Children’s Home (FUMCH) is a refuge and haven for abused, neglected and troubled children. It has been serving residents of the state of Florida for more than 100 years. Children are provided a home-like setting at the main campus or the Youth Ranch. The Children’s Home is also focused on foster care services through their Open Hearts Family Service. To learn more about the Children’s Home, contact Lisa Johnson.

Jerome’s Story

Jerome first came to the Children’s Home about a year ago. He says he learned to hide at an early age, because he had to raise his siblings. During his time at the home, he has come into his own by getting involved in the running club and as an actor. To learn more about his story, including his plans for the future, watch his video.

Next Fifth Sunday in 2020: March 29
To support their ministry, please make an online contribution. For more information, contact Pat Kelly.



March 27
Community Resources:
This information is provided by All4HealthFL Collaborative and United Way Suncoast.

March 23
Hyde Park’s pastors will be leading a Video Devotion at 9 a.m. each weekday on Facebook Live. If you miss the live edition, these messages have been archived there as well. On the Hyde Park page, look down the left column and click on “Live Video.” Likewise, Virtual Meditation will be offered each weekday at 12:15 p.m. on The Portico’s Facebook page. It’s presented as a recurring Recurring Event. Note: You don’t need to have a Facebook account to watch or participate. Simply click on the video and it will open an another window.

March 20
Our Open Arms Ministry will provide support to those experiencing homelessness this Sunday, March 22, but in a different format. Service will be provided af four stations or tables in the main parking lot behind our Harnish Activities Center. Food (a bag lunch from Metropolitan Ministries,) a bottle of water and mail will be distributed to our guests. Restrooms will be open. We are sensitive to the guidance requiring social distancing and must ask our guests to move on once they have received their food, water and mail. Groups cannot form or “hang out” on church property. To our volunteers: if for any reason you are not able to participate this Sunday, please stay home and stay safe. You may support our efforts and guests in prayer from a distance.


March 15
Due to health and safety concerns, we are suspending our gatherings, including worship, for the time being. We will be hosting services online only. You can watch online at hydeparkumc.org/watch-live, on our Facebook page. Services online will take place on Sunday mornings at 9:30 and 11 a.m.

All groups, gathering, events and classes are suspended until further notice.

Are you sick or in quarantine? We want to make sure that our community remains connected, even when illness or quarantine requires physical separation. Please complete this form so we are aware of your circumstances.


The Bible Project 2020

The Bible Project 2020

For the first time ever, Hyde Park United Methodist Church is going to read the Bible as a congregation, from cover to cover. And we are going to watch how the Holy Spirit unleashes a fresh wave of insight, transformation and possibility in us and in this church as we take this journey together.

Starting Jan. 1, we will begin with Genesis 1. And we will follow the same daily reading plan for all 365 days until we get to the end of Revelation at the end of the year.

There is no better way for you to learn to live your story as God intends it than for you to find yourself in the stories in this book. Did you know there’s between 600 to 800 stories in this book? And each one is an invitation for you to learn how to live your own story.

You don’t have to wait until Jan. 1 to start reading the Bible, of course. You can start with the daily Scripture readings that are listed in your sermon insert this morning (and on the website.) And I’ve also put together an insert that you might consider tucking in your Bible and keeping handy for reference. I’ve written a quick guide of Scriptures to read when facing certain challenges and situations. It’s available on our website.

For the complete run-down on this great program, visit BibleProject2020.

Azeele Street – Now Open Sunday Mornings

Azeele Street – Now Open Sunday Mornings

Help Reduce Traffic and Increase Safety by entering and exiting the main parking lot from the south (Horatio) or west (Magnolia) entrances.

Remember to use the designated crosswalks.

We are no longer able to close Azeele St. to through traffic.

THE CORE – Remembering Our Values and Who We Are

THE CORE – Remembering Our Values and Who We Are

Our shared values are important – to us as a church and to us individually.

Each week in our current worship series, “THE CORE: The Center of Who We Are”, we are learning about each of our core values: Christ Centered, Biblically Rooted, Warm Hearted, Open Minded, Mission Directed and Connection Committed.

Download the “THE CORE” reference card (pdf)

Magrey deVega describes “the center of who we are” at Hyde Park and what it means for us to live out our core values as a church in this six-minute video.

[youtube width=”500″ height=”250″]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_yETz_kDFDs[/youtube]

More about Who We Are at Hyde Park United Methodist.


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