St. Luke's United Methodist Church


4851 S. Apopka-Vineland Road
Orlando, FL 32819
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Weekly Update – August 14, 2014

Posted on August 15, 2014 at 1:30 am in .

Dear St. Luke’s Friends,

It’s here! Opening weekend of our third annual summer show “Big Fish.” This amazing story is full of fantastic tales of mermaids, giants, circus characters, and witches all coming to life by the banks of a river in Alabama. Small town Edward Bloom has big dreams and is full of hope and optimism as he sets out as a young man to explore the world. On his adventures he encounters an incredible cast of characters and meets the love of his life, Sandra and they begin a family. The musical deals with the relationship between Edward and his grown son Will, who is becoming a father himself. This very personal and touching show allows us to watch as Will comes to truly understand his father just in time to say goodbye. All ages will love this show and every part of the production is amazing.

This is going to be one of those moments at St. Luke’s that you will not want to miss; it speaks so much to who we are as a congregation. Big Fish was chosen this year to represent not only our core values but also to speak to the countless families we have in our congregation and our community.  We were asked to produce a show for all ages, but also to create opportunities for families to grow together and understand one another.

This show gives a wonderful jumping off point for our fall sermon series “Relationslips.”  Using the beginning of God’s family in the book of Genesis and also some family systems theories we will look at the dynamic relationships of families and friends. We will discover how the gifts of our relationships take work, love, grace and reconciliation. Not only will we walk through the stories of Genesis in worship, but we have also created our own commentary and study guide along with a group DVD for you to use along the way.  We have new groups beginning in the next weeks and have invited all Sunday school classes, small groups and even cluster groups to use this guide as we take a look at our relationships together.

This entire ministry of musicals connected to sermon series and studies came out of the strategies in our 4D Vision from 2010.  During the Lenten season of 2010 when we dreamed of how to reach our community, you as a congregation spoke about what keeps you coming back to St. Luke’s.  Overwhelmingly the core values of acceptance, hospitality, community, discipleship and service rooted in Christ’s love came up again and again as reasons to reach people.  You answered that our arts and creativity were reasons you not only came to St. Luke’s but also invited others.  As we wrestled with the desire many of you had to produce musical theater through the talent in our congregation and community, we realized how important this ministry can be to fulfilling the strategies created to:

1) Speak Love Aloud

2) Turn the Church Inside Out

3) Connect for Care

Each year we have a cast and crew made up of equal parts St. Lukers and community friends.  Through our culture of hospitality, acceptance, community and service, we welcome those community friends into the regular life of St. Luke’s.  Historically more than half of the cast, who originally come as “guests” to use their gifts among us, become regular attenders who use their gifts in leadership with St. Luke’s.  In other words – your vision is beginning to become a reality.  But we are still on the journey.

Which brings us to worship this Sunday.  We have an exciting opportunity during worship to see where we are on the journey of our five-year vision of ministry and resources. We will share what it means to be “halfway” between “here” and “there.”  You will receive the much anticipated update on the stewardship of not only our facilities optimization plans but also our community transformation. After each service you will have the opportunity to go to the Fellowship Hall to ask more in-depth questions of our leaders in these areas.  We look forward to seeing you in worship this Sunday as we take another step forward in Building the Kingdom by Building Disciples.

With faith, hope, and love,

Pastor Bill and Pastor Jenn

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