Behind the Scenes with TAC Award Winners
Congratulations to the 2012 TAC award recipients who demonstrated faithfulness by both growing membership and increasing the number of new professions of faith. Pastor Jack Womack of Hope Community UMC who helped coordinate the award process this year noted this was the second year that a new church start received the Copeland Award, named after Bishop Copeland who was known for having a strong passion for evangelism. “This year Dayspring and Galilee showed incredible growth,” he adds. “Also Faithbridge in Spring has more in worship than in membership. I find all of these signs of vitality to be very exciting and I hope we can continue to refine the criteria to include metrics beyond straight numbers at some point.”
First United Methodist Church/Hempstead
Receiving an award for Exceptional Small Membership Churches...Attendance 61 to 120
According to Pastor Nancy Creason, FUMC has been putting an increased emphasis on:
- creating an atmosphere in worship that is more inviting where people want to worship while being with their friends and family.
· creating a hospitable atmosphere where folks are friendly to not only their friends, but also to guests.
· better focus on children in worship and in programming that addresses their spiritual needs
· addressing the importance of folks thinking outside themselves...the best advertisement is by word of mouth...and when church folks care about people more than numbers they invite others to join them in worship...good things happen when the focus is in the right place.
· a little more focus on appearance...first impressions mean a great deal. No second chances for a first impression.
Hope Community United Methodist Church, chartered 01/01/2011
Pastor Jack Womack says his new faith community has focused efforts and ministry on three areas.
1) Variety of experience
We welcome everyone to worship with us on Saturdays at 5:30 PM and Sundays at 11 AM. Saturday is a relevant service focused on recovery and relates the Biblical message to the 12 steps of recovery; all are welcome and dress is informal. On Sundays our worship is more traditional, although informal dress is still welcomed. This variety of experience plus the availability of worship for those working shift work has been very popular in our community.
2) We also are intentional with variety of options in Bible Study
Hope Community offers different studies, some short term, in the evening and on Sunday mornings.
3) Social connection.
Our Men's fellowship, Women's and motorcycle ministry provide conduits to the faith community for many who do not typically attend a worship service. Our mission is to offer Real Hope for Real People - and we accomplish that by becoming the heart, hands and feet of Jesus Christ for our Community and for the world. Hope UMC has also partnered with a nearby school to provide backpacks and funding for a reading program.
Keith Bell-Senior Pastor @ Galilee UMC Texas City
“Our Church received 3 awards; Copeland (under 100), Small Church Excellence (under 60), and the Rising Star of Christian Education. I believe the history or key to God's success at Galilee can be attributed to 3 areas of focus:
1) Everyone needs to feel they have value in God and are loved by God. In a small, poor church like Galilee, many in the congregation often feel like they have been forgotten by God. Reminding them of the many blessings and small victories in God nourished an attitude of gratitude that grew.
2) We needed a vision and measurable outcomes. When we started the very first Sunday I told them that God had not forgotten about them on this isolated corner. I said in one year’s time not only would our city know about us but the entire Texas Annual Conference and Bishop Huie will know what God is doing in Galilee! Thanks be to God that He honored our faithfulness!
3) You have to love people where they are. That means spiritually AND geographically. Go where they live because that's where they hurt.....Where they live!”