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Dear Hyde Park Family,

In his biography of St. Francis, the great theologian and author G. K. Chesterton described the venerable saint as “the mirror of Christ rather as the moon is the mirror of the sun. The moon is much smaller than the sun, but it is also much nearer to us; and being less vivid it is more visible.” The history of the church is filled with such mirrors of Christ, and they show aspects of holy living that strengthen and encourage us.

Starting June 30, we will share in a special six-part worship series called “Voices of Inspiration,” in which we will explore and celebrate significant figures in recent Christian history. We will not just remember the story of their lives; we will lean into their example and explore how we can carry on their legacy in the way we live.

June 30   Dietrich Bonhoeffer   Matthew 4:18-22 

Dietrich Bonhoeffer was one of the most significant martyrs of the 20th century, whose courageous stance against the Hitler and Christian Nationalism continues to inspire us. In his famous book The Cost of Discipleship, he calls the church to remember that when Jesus calls people to follow him, he “bids them to come and die.”

July 7   Mother Theresa   Psalm 113:7-9 

Mother Theresa of Calcutta was the greatest charitable force in our lifetimes. She inspired us to give of ourselves humbly and obediently for the sake of the poor and needy, regardless of the cost. Her life and witness are captured in her quote, based on Psalm 113: “Joy is prayer; joy is strength: joy is love; joy is a net of love by which you can catch souls.”

July 14   Howard Thurman   Psalm 139: 13-18 

Howard Thurman was one of the greatest preachers, writers, and mystics of the 20th century. His book Jesus and the Disinherited was a landmark work that invited us to see Jesus on the side of the oppressed, and inspires us to work through non-violent means to bring justice and social change.

July 21   Mahalia Jackson   Matthew 6:25-34 

Mahalia Jackson was one of the greatest musical artists of her generation, not just for her beautiful music, but also for her inspirational witness. Her most iconic moments were in her singing of “His Eye is On the Sparrow,” based on the teaching of Jesus in Matthew, which inspired comfort and courage during the civil rights movement.

July 28   Oscar Romero   Luke 4:16-21 

Archbishop Oscar Romero was a powerful voice for freedom and liberation for the people of El Salvador, and his untimely death by an assassin’s bullet leaves behind a stirring witness to the power of non-violence in addressing systemic inequities and injustice.

August 4   Mary McLeod Bethune   Hebrews 11:1-6 

Mary McLeod Bethune was an educator, philanthropist, and civil rights activist, whose work was deeply rooted in her Christian convictions. Bethune-Cookman University stands as an enduring reminder of her legacy, as this state’s only United Methodist historically black college. Her famous quote “Without faith, nothing is possible; with faith, nothing is impossible” captures her belief in the power of God to transform hearts and communities for the better.

We hope you’ll join us all throughout this exciting and inspiring series. And if you find yourself out of town, remember to worship with us online!

Grace and Peace,


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


I will be observing my customary summer hiatus from writing the Midweek Message, and will return in August. In the meantime, stay tuned for some special Summer Midweek Messages, written by other members of our staff.