Pastor Mark’s eNote – Hamilton Mill UMC: One Among Many

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     What sets Hamilton Mill UMC apart? We are one church among many, after all. What is our unique place among all those churches?

     Go back to our beginning and look to the first heartbeat of this church; the beginning shapes our now. We “grew up” with our community. In the Davises’ living room, at Fort Daniel School, and on Pine Road, we welcomed and welcome still, always rejoicing in the next to come. And in all that welcoming, we have grown with our growing community—a community of grace for all. Hospitality isn’t something this church has to discover; it is a part of our muscle memory; it’s who we are. In the beginning, someone welcomed you. Whom will you welcome next?

     Also in the DNA of this church are care for others and love for the world.   Compassionate service animated by the love of Jesus is the doing that defines our being. With grace and mercy, this church reaches out to embrace, to ease suffering, to walk alongside, to serve and serve with. Missions are essential to who we are and always will be. We will always be a church prayerfully seeking the next opportunity to serve and love; we will always look outward. Send us, Lord.

     We are also a church that is thoroughly Wesleyan. We’re United Methodists. That means we take seriously the call to offer salvation; we will always invite people into a saving relationship with Jesus Christ; it’s why we are. And being Wesleyan means we also take seriously the call to grow in love and truth, and to nurture, nourish, and support one another in the faith; it’s why we are together. We take seriously the call to sanctification, to personal transformation in the Holy Spirit. That is a lifelong journey of grace upon grace, from our Mothers’ Morning Out through our preschool and through every age that follows.

     What sets us apart in this community is that we joyously participate with the Holy Spirit in building Christians to change the world. Sunday morning becomes seven days that become a lifetime. We are here every step of the way. We share life, and that means all of life and every transition, every moment of joy and crisis. We are a church of many ages and stages, but we are one generation—this generation—together for this moment in time.

     Yes, we are but one of many churches in this community, all called to offer Christ and serve his kingdom, but we are also “fearfully and wonderfully made,” created uniquely and beautifully in the love of God to share the love of God with all. We are Hamilton Mill UMC, born of grace, serving with care, growing together.

     And having grown up with this community, we’re with it for the long haul.

     We’re here now to love, to welcome, to serve, to grow. And tomorrow, we will be here now, and the next day, here now, and until the great day of Christ’s victory in love, here now, with rejoicing.



In Christ,

Mark Westmoreland

Author: Mark Westmoreland

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