Dear Hyde Park Family,
First, I invite you to pause for a moment and offer this prayer with me, for the people of Texas, Louisiana and all those affected by Hurricane Laura:
God of Power and Provision, our hearts are joined in prayer for the people facing the ferocity of this hurricane. Preserve their lives and fill them with courage. When the storm subsides, may all necessary provisions and restoration of electricity be swift in their arrival. Protect the first responders, power technicians and relief workers. And raise us up as your church, to respond to the needs in any way we can help. We remember the words of your Son Jesus, who spoke into the storm, “Peace, be still.” In his name, we pray. Amen.
THE ARRIVAL OF JESUS
Well, finally. After more than 23,000 Old Testament verses, 242 daily readings, and some long months through the prophets, we finally get to the New Testament this Sunday, as part of our Bible Project 2020.
I commend all of you who have been on this journey so far. We have had more than 40 small groups continuing to meet faithfully every week and reflect on the readings, even during the pandemic. Many of you have shared that those weekly Bible studies have been a vital lifeline, keeping you connected with others. We have 2,875 active listeners and 118,000 downloads of the podcast. And week after week, we have marveled at how these Scriptures have been providing us just the right words of wisdom, encouragement and challenge at just the right time.
If you haven’t kept up with the readings, or have not joined the journey yet, now would be a great time to jump on board! Visit the Bible Project 2020 web page for the daily readings and devotional entries starting with Matthew this Sunday. If you would like to join a small group, please complete this form and someone will contact you. And if you are on Facebook, join our online group and interact with nearly 400 folks on the journey.
COMMUNION OFFERED BEGINNING SEPTEMBER 6
We are also excited to announce that with the arrival of the New Testament, it is timely to resume a monthly observance of communion. Like much that we are doing as a church, we balance our desire for connection with the need to ensure everyone’s safety. So, communion will look a little different, while retaining the core of its meaning and tradition.
During the online services on September 6, clergy will lead the communion liturgy as part of the broadcast. For those of you who live outside the Tampa Bay area, or who choose not to come to campus, please have bread and grape juice ready to be blessed as you watch the service.
For those who are local and able and willing to drive, we invite you to come to the campus at the conclusion of either the 9:30 or 11 a.m. services. When you arrive, come to the large Magnolia parking lot, where you will remain in your car as staff direct you where to drive. More information and a traffic pattern map are at hydeparkumc.org/communion to prepare you for your arrival.
Pastors will come to you with consecrated elements, served through your car window in a non-contact and sanitary manner. We encourage you and your family to wear masks, as we work together to create a safe environment for all. We look forward to seeing and celebrating with you on September 6!
Come, Lord Jesus!
The Rev. Magrey deVega
Senior Pastor, Hyde Park United Methodist