St. Luke's United Methodist Church


4851 S. Apopka-Vineland Road
Orlando, FL 32819
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A Note from Pastor Jenn-May 30, 2024

Posted on May 29, 2024 at 9:14 am in .

Dear St. Lukers,

It sure has been a busy week here at St. Luke’s! We have three different camps full of kids and youth happening at once, filling our campus with the sounds of young people laughing, learning, and growing together. It was a great first week for our cast of Disney’s Newsies Jr. who are learning lines, music, and choreography to share the story of the newspaper boys’ strike in 1899 against newspaper publishing giant Joseph Pulitzer. Together these young people, aided by some amazing nuns and a young female reporter, bring attention to the unfair wage practices against children to then Governor Theodore Roosevelt. It’s going to be a great show, and this cast is just amazing, so get your tickets now (click here)!

What’s fascinating about Newsies Jr. is that it’s based on the real-life events of the Newsboys Strike in 1899 in New York, which began to shed light on the issues of child labor happening around the country. In 1908, the Methodist Church took a stand for the rights of workers with a Social Creed that called for a fair wage, safety standards, and an end to child labor, which influenced leaders such as Teddy Roosevelt. St. Luke’s Missions Team had a chance to talk with our young cast about the connection between the story they are telling and our own history as a denomination, as well as sharing about our summer youth mission trips to Washington D.C. and around Florida. Helping our young people connect their passion for dancing, singing, and acting with the powerful stories they can tell about their church and our core values is why we tell the stories we do at St. Luke’s. This is a chance for our families to see how our core values can be superpowers in their hands and hearts to share Christ-centered love in life-changing ways.

On Sunday we will continue in our Values: Living our Superpowers sermon series as we begin to study the superhero people found in the books of Ruth and Esther. We’ll be looking at the core value of Acceptance this week lived out through the powerful faith of Ruth, a woman who joined her life with her mother-in-law to support one another and make their way in the world, even as she was going to be an alien in a foreign land. I invite you to read at least the first chapter this week as we prepare our hearts for Sunday.

This Sunday is also ALL-IN, meaning all ages worship together at 9:30 and 10:00 a.m. as we gather at the Communion table, a place where we take in tangible symbols of Christ-centered love found in bread and cup, and see the core value of Acceptance lived out at Christ’s table, where there is room for absolutely everyone, even the unfamiliar person who’s visiting for the first time.

Do you remember what is was like the first time you came to communion at St. Luke’s? Maybe you felt like you didn’t belong, or you didn’t know the customs. I know for me to go and kneel next to others as a visitor is daunting as I feel like everyone can tell I am the “newbie.” What does it mean to have the courage to come and join a family of faith you don’t know, and kneel with them at this table of love and acceptance? I wonder if that might not be a powerful image of Ruth’s acceptance of Naomi as we pray for what God may be teaching us this Sunday in worship. Join us as we unpack this powerful story and this superpower of Acceptance, reminding us that Christ’s love knows no boundaries.

See you Sunday because it’s not St. Luke’s without U!


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