Borrowed Blankets and Broken Hearts: FUMC Pasadena Welcomes Foster Kids Home

By: Sherri Gragg   Borrowed Blankets and Office Sofas There just aren’t enough foster homes, especially for teenage boys.   Every night, all over the United States, older foster care children lie down on their case workers’ office sofas, pull borrowed blankets up under their chins, and dream of some place to call home.   Tennessee. Indiana. Arizona. Kansas...   Dallas. San Antonio. Austin. Houston…   This May 14th, FUMC Pasadena will make a difference when they welcome 16 teen boys into their ...

Country Church, City Lights: Addicks UMC

By: Sherri Gragg   In The Little House, the beloved children’s book by Virginia Lee Burton, a quaint home is built “way out in the country” where it is surrounded by fields and apple trees. Far away, in the distance, the little house can see the faint lights of the city, lights that move closer and closer as the seasons go by.   Eventually, the city overtakes the little house. High-rise buildings tower above it, and concrete surrounds it. At night, the sad little house dreams of moonlight on ...

From Bluebird Houses to Literacy: Russell Memorial Invests in Kids

By: Sherri Gragg   Russell Memorial Serves Wills Point Children As the last school bus rolls out of the parking lot of Wills Point Intermediate School and the hallways fall silent, a group of fourth graders excitedly make their way to an afterschool club led by Russell Memorial member, Kay Crosby. Under Crosby’s careful guidance, the children are making their own bluebird houses from start to finish. “Wills Point, Texas is the Bluebird capital of the South,” explained the Rev. David Cartwright....

Look Me in the Eye: Mobility Worldwide

By: Sherri Gragg Crawling to Help In 1994, missionary to the Congo, Larry Hills, stood outside his mission gazing across a plain of high grass. As he watched, he saw the grass begin to part. A moment later, a Congolese woman crawled out into the open, a baby strapped to her back and her children walking beside her. Unable to walk, the woman was forced to crawl everywhere she went. She had come to the mission desperate for help.   Hills called Mel West, a friend and partner in missions who was ...

Meet Your Missionaries!

MEET YOUR MISSIONARIES It’s time to get to know your GBGM Missionaries connected to The Texas Annual Conference! This edition of Cross Connection highlights E. Barte and B. Barte, our representatives in S.E. Asia.   B. Barte Countries: Phillipines, Asia, and Pacific Spouse: E. BARTE Children: three sons Education: Bachelor of Arts in Christian Education, 1991 Deaconess: 1991-2008 Commissioned: 2002 to Cambodia Cambodia 2002-2009 Ordained to the clergy 2008 Assigned to Laos in 2010 Specialty: ...

What Would Mama Wesley Do?

By: Sherri Gragg   Let’s celebrate Mother’s Day by asking ourselves, “What would Mama Wesley Do?”   "When my kids become wild and unruly, I use a nice, safe playpen. When they're finished, I climb out." – Erma Bombeck Motherhood is not for wimps. It is both like running a marathon and riding a roller coaster- Grueling and rewarding. Pure joy and absolute terror. Most moms would admit to moments, days…years, when they wish they could crawl into a “nice safe playpen” and come out again after ...

Why Itinerancy?

By: Sherri Gragg   The Itinerant system of the United Methodist Church has deep roots in the brave circuit riders who ministered to pioneers on the American frontier.   Saddle-Worn and Spirit-Led “La, me! Has a Methodist preacher come at last?”   Twenty-six-year-old Methodist itinerant preacher, Jacob Young, stared in stunned wonder at the woman before him. Weary and saddle-worn, Young was desperate for someplace to lay his head for the night. When he came upon the lonely cabin in the woods, ...

Calling All Singing Clergy!

For this year’s Retiree Worship Service – Tuesday, May 29, 2:00 pm - honoring our Retirees, we will once again have a “Clergy Choir.” ALL ARE WELCOME!!! As we have done for the past two years, the clergy choir will join in the singing of hymns during the service and then will provide a very special anthem in honor of our retiring clergy, “Bound for Greater Things.” The last time we did this we filled the choir loft with over 90 clergy singers! I would like to personally invite all clergy to ...

TAC 2018 Options for Giving

There are new ways to donate to the Texas Annual Conference if you feel called to give this year. Offering plates will be still passed around during services, but you may also pull out your phone or tablet and to donate via text, through the Shelby Next app, or through a computer or mobile browser and designate your offering to support specific areas of ministry. Throughout the week of conference, special offerings during worship services are planned to go toward the following:    Sunday, May ...

Church Security Seminar May 29

The Local Church Business Administrators of the Texas Annual Conference are hosting a seminar on the topic of Church Security. The seminar is free and open to church administrators, treasurers, financial administrators, trustees, and church leaders. When: Tuesday, May 29, 2018 10:00 am to 11:30 am Where: Woodlands United Methodist Church - Second Floor Children’s Room # 34 About the speaker: James F. Napolitano has over 30 years of combined law enforcement and private security experience. He ...

Hispanic Ministries Celebration Event at Annual Conference

The Texas Annual Conference invites you to the 2018 Hispanic Ministries Dinner and Celebration to celebrate our growth and accomplishments in the Hispanic Community of the TAC. Monday, May 28, 2018 The Woodlands UMC 2200 Lake Woodlands Drive The Woodland, TX 77380  5:30pm-6:45pm Dinner (street tacos) in Wesley Hall The doors open at 5:00pm. Dinner is served at 5:30pm. $15 Adults (5 tacos) & $10 children 12 and under (3 tacos) Meals include drink and dessert! DEADLINE TO REGISTER: May 20, 5PM ...

Letter from Bishop Jones on The Way Forward

May 4, 2018 Dear Sisters and Brothers of the Texas Annual Conference, The Council of Bishops has just concluded its Spring meeting. We engaged in many hours of honest conversation, authentic worship and careful deliberation. The entire meeting was bathed in prayer. The Council has issued a press release as its official communication. It is important to understand that three official actions were taken as part of the one formal motion and rationale that was adopted concerning the report of the ...

End-of-School Church Events?

Is your church doing something special to celebrate the end of the school year?  We would love to hear about it! Please reach out to our editor, Sherri Gragg, at

2018 Celebration Women's Ministry Luncheon

2018 Celebration Women's Ministry Luncheon Mary Lou Reece will be speaking on the topic: "Grace for Today."  Tuesday May 29 at 12 noon in Asbury Hall 2200 Lake Woodlands Drive The Woodlands UMC The Woodlands, TX  77380 Cost $25 Register online or pay by check payable to Celebration  Mail check to Helle Verhoeven 18410 Shallow Oak Court Tomball, TX 77377   Contact: Sheila Davis for additional information 409-363-2372

$4.8 Million UMCOR Grant Ensures Harvey Recovery Efforts Continue

By: Sherri Gragg   UMCOR- A History of Service UMCOR was founded by the Bishop Herbert Welch in 1940 in order to meet the needs of the displaced and suffering during World War II. As Bishop Welch stood before the General Conference that year, he challenged his fellow United Methodists to embrace the fledgling organization’s vision to become a “voice of conscience among Methodists to act in the relief of human suffering without distinction of race, color, or creed.” The Methodists readily ...

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