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									                           LIFE WITH FAITH
                                   Faith United Methodist Church
                              909 19TH Avenue North, Fargo ND 58102
                                        April 1, 2007
                        Rev.Peg Zerface, Pastor - Katy Gulya, Office Mgr
                                      Website: faithumcfargo.org

                       VOL. 2007      MONTHLY CHURCH NEWSLETTER       ISSUE 4




A Message from Pastor Peg . . .

“Here comes Peter Cottontail, hopping down the
bunny trail……” so goes a song from my
childhood. It popped into my head the other day
 as I was standing out on the deck absorbing the
warmth of an early spring day. . .
But instead of putting Easter eggs and candy in the yard my imaginary
bunny was busy filling the basket with critters such as goats, cows,
bunnies, ducks and chicks. As of the end of March, $646 has been
collected through the Noisy Offering for Heifer Project. This is nearly
double the amount collected a year ago.
The One Great Hour of Sharing offering ---again I am at a loss for words-
--$416. That’s three times the amount of the previous year. It means so
much for people affected by disaster to have immediate help. This
offering ensures the ministry of United Methodist Committee On Relief
can continue.
Unless you have been in dire straits after a disaster it is hard to
understand the depth of this ministry. UMCOR is also helping to provide
micro-loans which help people become self-sufficient.
The food pantry needs continue to grow and you are faithfully
contributing each month to that ministry. Thank you to Julia Christiansen
who has volunteered to deliver the items each month.
There were 21 coats, several scarves and pairs of gloves, warm vests and
sweatshirts delivered to the Ray of Hope Drop In Center.
Groceries were provided for a meal as well.

We will celebrate Easter Day shortly after you receive this newsletter.      FINANCE REPORT
                                                                             2007 Budget-----$220,764
Recognizing the day of Jesus’ resurrection is the most holy day of the
                                                                             2007 Pledges----$168, 455
church year. It is a day of new beginnings. In the best way we can we        Difference between budget and pledges----$55,309
have offered resurrection, hope and new life to many people through our      Needed each month to meet budget-----$18,400
offerings.                                                                   Auto-pay each month----$4735
                                                                             Additional needed each month ---- $13,662
I am thankful for the ministry of Faith UMC. It includes many aspects.
One of those is our apportionments. We are currently two months behind                                  ARE YOU FAITHFUL?
in meeting our share. I am hopeful that very soon those payments can
be made to the Conference as they allow for vital ministries to continue.        A pastor was asked to define attendance at Sunday services. His
                                                                                 reply was:
Just a brief note about Natural Church Development…Thank you to those                  If your car starts one out of three times, do you consider it
who took the survey. The results should be back soon. The core church                   faithful?
health team will then go over the results, develop a plan and off we’ll go             If the paper boy skips Monday & Tuesday deliveries,
on a new adventure.                                                                     would he be faithful?
                                                                                       If you failed to report for work 2 or 3 times a month, would
Do have a Blessed Easter as we celebrate the Risen Christ.                              the boss consider you faithful?
                                                                                       If your refrigerator stops for a day now and then, would
       Pastor Peg                                                                       you excuse it and say, “it works most of the time?”
                                                                                       If the water heater greets you with cold water 1 or 2
                                                                                        mornings a week, would you call that faithful
                                                                                        performance?
                                                                                       If you miss a couple of mortgage payments, would the
                                                                                        mortgage holder say, “Well, ten times out of twelve isn’t
                                                                                        bad?”
                                                                                       You miss worship and attend meetings only often enough
                                                                                        to show you are interested, but not often enough to get
HOLY WEEK SCHEDULE                                                                      involved, are you faithful?

Palm Sunday, April 1                                                             God hasn’t called us to be successful or popular, or brilliant, but he
                                                                                 has called us to be faithful. Faithful attendance in worship is worthy
      10:30 am at Faith
                                                                                 of your prayerful consideration. Author Unknown
7 pm Maundy Thursday, April 5
      at Edgewood                                                                         NEXT NEWSLETTER DEADLINE: April 23, 2007
                                                                                 ____________________________________________________________
7 pm Good Friday, April 6                                                        Visit our website at faithumcfargo.org
      at Flame of Faith UMC in West Fargo                                        Church email: faithumc@702com.net
                                                                                 Pastor Peg: pastorpeg@702com.net
Easter, April 8 Breakfast at 9 am; Communion service at 10:30                    Office hours: Monday and Friday –9–12, Tuesday to Thursday –9-3
 Our Sunday morning worship service is being broadcast on Cable Channel       ER                Adventures in Bikini Bottom by Scholastic, Inc.
12 on Saturdays at10:30am.                                                     Sch

                                                                                             NATURAL CHURCH DEVELOPMENT at FAITH
      DAYTIME ALPHA COURSE COMING SOON TO FAITH
                                                                                   Over the last few months you have heard Pastor Zerface talk about Natural Church
                                                                               Development (NCD). Over a year ago the Administrative Council decided to embark
  When: Monday, April 16, 2007 ---9:30-11:30—                                  Faith in this process. Since then we have been waiting for the district leadership to get
                      Celebration Brunch                                       the NCD organized and for other churches to get on board.
           Come and see what Alpha is all about                                    Since Pastor Zerface was appointed to Faith, several steps toward NDC have been
  Where: Fellowship Hall                                                       taken. The survey 30 of our members taken Sunday, March 11, was the first visible
  What: Alpha is “A Practical Study of your Christian Faith”                   step in this journey.
        taught by Pastor Nicky Gumbel of the Holy                                  The Administrative Council considers this process to be vital to the long-term
        Brompton Church in England                                             viability of Faith. Many of you have been members for many years and remember
        It is a 10 week class that includes breakfast, lesson                  when this Church had two services, a full Bell Choir, large confirmation classes, and a
        on DVD, followed by small discussion group.                            large youth group. Faith was bustling with activity.
        EVERYONE in the congregation is WELCOME                                    Today, we have no Bell Choir, an active but small youth group, one service and
                                                                               relatively low attendance. Even more, we know that if no new members join, one by
        to participate.
                                                                               one Faith UMC will become smaller and not viable. Perhaps we got to this point
        A wonderful opportunity to grow in your faith Alpha logo               because of the relative decline of north Fargo in relation to south Fargo, or because of
        journey and develop a closer relationship with                         the changing age demographics in Fargo. Maybe it is because of changes in society
        the Lord.                                                              as a whole. Others would point to the role past pastors played in our decline. And while
                                                                               there may be some truth in each of these explanations, accepting these forces as
 For more information, check with the church office or call                    foretellers of the future dooms us to a passive, hopeless future. Pastor Peg and the
 Scott Sherwood—293-3889 or Karen Balsbaugh—235-2633.                          Administrative Council believe Natural Church Development is a tool and a hope God
                                                                               gives us.
                                                                                   In a nutshell, through NDC we will first identify Faith’s greatest weakness; second,
                    NEW BOOKS IN OUR LIBRARY                                   we will think of ways to address it; third we will consciously work at becoming stronger
                                                                               in the area we are weakest. This would make Faith a stronger church. At the end of a
There are four new 2007 UMW Reading Program books on the UMW shelf.            year, the process starts anew.
They can be checked out by anyone.                                                 The survey taken by 30 of you is the tool that will help us identify our weakness. In
                                                                               a few weeks we will receive the results of the survey. The Administrative Council has
Gre    Dinner with a Perfect Stranger by David Gregory (fiction)               appointed Greg and Liz Ewing-Lee, Frank and Patty Kratky, and Deb Olson to discuss
248    Courageous Spirit edited by the Upper Room                              ways we can address our weakest link. They will do so guided by Pastor Rich Zeck,
272    The Blindfold’s Eyes by Sr. Dianna Ortiz                                from First UMC. When they are done with their work, they will bring their proposals to
282    Disturbing the Peace by James Hodge and Linda Cooper                    the Administrative Council for implementation.
                                                                                   Changes will come. Most of these changes, we will like and embrace. Some we
These books are new to the adult library. They are on the shelf in the foyer
for anyone to check out.                                                       may not like. When this happens we should ask ourselves, “Is what we are doing
030 McN         Rand McNally Bible Atlas                                       working? Have we grown lately?”
226 Luc         He Still Moves Stones by Max Lucado                                And so we embark on Natural Church Development because we love Faith UMC,
284.4 Mey       Morning Sun on a White Piano by Dr. Robin R. Meyers            we love the people of Faith, we love the care and concern we give each other. It is our
305.2 Koz       Ordinary Resurrections by Jonathan Kozol                       home. True. But more importantly, we want Natural Church Development to work and
640 McB         Frugal Luxuries byTracey McBride                               Faith to grow because here people can learn and believe what has comforted us so
                                                                               much and we know so well:
One new Easy Reading book                                                      Grace has been freely given to us all.
                                                                                         Peggy Jacobson is a great grandmother.
Oscar Flores, Chairman Administrative Council                                           Tess Elizabeth Ruth Reisenauer was born
                                                                                         March 19 to Amy Jacobson Reisenauer.

                                                                                               Bible Studies at Faith
                        REMEMBER THE FOOD PANTRY!
We celebrate Communion on the first Sunday of         food pantry       Bible Study           Monday       morning        Bible   Study     is at
every month and collect non-perishable food                                                   10 am in Fellowship Hall.
items (or cash) for the FM Emergency Food                               Disciple I is held Sunday evening in the library at 7 pm.
Pantry that Sunday. Items to bring:
sunbutter, peanut butter, crackers, soup, canned vegetables and         For more information call the office.
fruit, canned pasta, pasta and pasta sauces, jello & pudding
packages, flour, cereals. Pop top cans are very helpful since many                               Circles in April
of the people receiving food do not have can openers.
                                                                        Esther –19th - 12:15 pm Courtyard Café, Trollwood Village

                                                                        Rebecca – 17th – 9:30 am Verla Roos, 507 21st Ave S, Fargo
                              Noisy Offering!
                                                                                                         UMW
For the last 10 years Faith church has been taking a “noisy offering”
during the season of Lent. We support United Methodist mission          April 17, 6 pm Fargo Area Fellowship Dinner at Flame of Faith for all
                                                                        women. Sign up in the Narthex by April 15.
work around the world with this money. This year we will purchase
animals through Heifer International –                                                                 UMW has money available to assist
                                                                                                       children and youth with camp. If you
1 Heifer = $500                            1 Sheep = $120                                              are interested in applying, please
1 Llama = $150                             1 Water Buffalo = $250                                      write a note to UMW with your United
                                                                        Methodist Camping       request by May 15.
1 Goat = $120                              Chicks, Ducks, Geese = $20                                  Leave your request in the church office.
Honey Bees = $30                           1 Pig = $120                 Camp books are in the Narthex.
Trio of Rabbits = $60
                                                                                           Putting your beliefs to work…
So far, Faith UMC has collected $ 646.12!! Thank you.
                                                                        HOSTS WANTED: First UMC is looking for hosts for people attending
                                                                        the 2007 Latvian/Lithuanian Initiative Consultation to be held April 27th
                                                                        and 28th. If interested please call 293-8351 (Jef & Tammy Curfman) to
                                                                        leave your name.

                                                                        Do You shop at Sunmart? Sunmart stores are offering money to
    Stephanie Erickson, Miss Teen North Dakota International 2007.
                                                                        organizations for collecting the UPC barcodes off their Our Family
                   Stephanie was crowned March 24.
                                                                        products. 500 UPC’s = $25. There is an envelope on the Bulletin Board
                                                                        for your UPCs. Ours will be donated to McKinley School.
There is a container for “Boxtops for Education” labels in the kitchen.      Concordia College events are on the bulletin board. There are many
                                                                             musical events.

                      Community Events
 April 14 “Can’t Eat the Grain”
gathering. Potato and Salad Bar.
11:30 am computer session;
12:00 pm Potluck Social. Olivet
Lutheran Church, 1330 University
Dr S www.redriverceliacs.org
Make plans now to attend the New
Life Center Prayer
Breakfast/Evening Dessert this May. Tickets are on sale now for the 7:30
pm May 3 Dessert ($8) and 9:30 am May 4 Prayer Breakfast ($15). Both                                           April
events will be held in the Great Hall at the Fargo Holiday Inn. Jennifer
Rothschild will be the speaker. Contact Dorothy Lahren, Verna Volden or       We are celebrating Bob Pile’s 85th birthday on April 1 during
Elaine Seibel or stop in the office for your reservation.                     coffee fellowship.
        New Life Center is celebrating 100 years of ministry to homeless
people in the Fargo-Moorhead area. An event is being held on Thursday,        Birthday Sunday is April 15. During the morning worship service
April 12, 7 pm, Holiday Inn. Dinner, music & speaker $12, contact New         AprilBirthday People will be recognized! Donations in honor of a April
Life Center for a reservation – 235-4453.                                     Birthday can be put in the “Birthday Box” and everyone is invited to have
                                                                              birthday cake at Coffee Fellowship.
                                It’s Time!    to rummage through
                                                                                        1 Sally Hamilton           16 Stephanie Erickson
                                your closets and basements.                             5 Bob Pile                 17 David Brown
                                Mark your calendars and bring your                      6 Arlys Hagen                 Bobbe Shreve
                                stuff to the church Fellowship Hall.                      Audrey Larson               Jeff Wurgler
                                                                                        7 Carol Grimm              20 Tatiana Hamilton
                                Faith’s Spring Rummage Sale will be                    10 Marj Brown               25 Sandy Whited
                                        April 24 to 26.                                   Alex Flores              27 Dorothy Lahren
                                                                                          George Smith                Ron Peterson
Buy your geraniums and help out Nokomis Day Care at the same                           13 Martha DiCicco           28 Joe Rudd
time. Friends of Nokomis will be taking orders for geraniums until May                    Oscar Flores             29 Rhonda Miller
14. They are available in four colors, red, pink, salmon, and white. Each              14 Cristy Haugeberg         30 Lois Brewer
plant is good sized and will cost $4.00. $1.80 of that amount will be used
to benefit the children of Nokomis and should be considered a donation.
                                                                                       15 Imogene Carter
There are order forms in the church narthex or you can call Martha
DiCicco at 280-9443 or e-mail her at marthavd@msn.com. Checks
should be made payable to Friends of Nokomis. They will be available at                                    CONFIRMATION
the church the weekend of May 20.
                             May 20 is Confirmation Sunday
                                                                                           The Stewart and ver Dorn families, Bob Stewart passed away on March 8.




WITHIN FAITH’S FAMILY
                                                FOR PRAYER CHAIN REQUESTS
                                                   Call Elaine Grimm (287-2830)
                                                  Muriel Kaercher (232-2605) or
                                                      Church Office (232-6844)
                                                                                           Thank you for all the cards and prayers upon the death of my brother,
                                                                                           Steve Kratky. They were comforting at a very sad time.
IN OUR PRAYERS:                                                                                                   Frank Kratky
Larry Smith, stem cell transplant
                                                                                           The family of Robert Stewart would like to thank everyone for all of their
                                                                                           gifts, cards, prayers and support during his illness and at the time of his
CONTINUING IN OUR PRAYERS*:
Caroldine Olson, 63, sister of Rynell Korczak, is very ill with cancer.
                                                                                           death. The Faith family has helped us so much through these past
Rory Eidsness, father of Rebecca Huebner’s friend                                          difficult months, and we are truly grateful.
Lila Huebner’s aunt, Diane (complications from leukemia)                                                          The Stewarts and ver Dorns
Indrani Samaraweera’s grand nephew, Magnus, born prematurely with heart
problems.                                                                                  On behalf of the American Cancer Society and the 2007 Daffodil Days
Al & Nette Lundeen                        Virginia Stewart and family                      Committee, we would like to extend our sincere appreciation for your
Bruce Bock                                Elaine & Wayne Grimm                             support.
Betty Mills, Harold Mattingly’s sister    Ruth Bateman
Betty Fowler                              Sandy Underwood’s brother, Dean                  Thank you to the individuals who donated a roaster and a large coffee
Marge & Dick Witz                         Darci Symington                                  pot to Faith’s kitchen.
Dave Cramer (36, cancer; friend of Dave Hinkley)
April Bucholz                             Marlene Frost                                    Thank you for your past support of the “Got Milk” community initiative to
Judy Kerr                                 Tim Powers                                       buy morning milk for low-income elementary school students. The money
Mary Davidson’s father, Elmer Keller      Joan Schatz (Mill’s sister-in-law) Frank         raised was enough to provide 469 children with milk for 1 semester. So
& Patti Kratky                                                                             we were not able to help all the kids, and certainly not for the full year.
                                                                                           We are confident that a goal of $40,000 is reachable and are beginning
*Please notify the office if you would prefer your name be removed from the prayer list.
                                                                                           our campaign now.
AND . . Our President, the armed forces and their families, world leaders, all of                        Steve Backsen
God’s children and those who continue to seek justice and peace in our nation
and in the world.
                                                                                           Thank you so much for your donations to the Emergency Food Pantry.
                                                                                           Donations, like yours, help to make feeding families in our community a
                                                                                           reality.
                                                                                                          Linda Clark
                         Jill Rudolph, her father Wally Casler passed away. Wally
                         was a member of Faith from 1962-1966.                             Thank you for your donations during the month of March for Food Share
                                                                                           Month. A new list of needs will be posted in the YW box in the narthex.
                         The Parsons family, Jesse Parsons passed away. Jesse                            Helen Youngs           293-6523
                         was a member of Faith from 1968-1984.
                            Thank you!

Thank you for serving Brunch at Churches United for the Homeless:                               Sept. 29, 2007
March 25: Martha DiCicco, Jim Frost, Rebecca Ober, Jerry & Pat
Sheldon.
                                                                                        Three Rivers Mission in Motion
                                                                                             Fargo Calvary UMC
Thank You to the following folks who assisted with worship services
during the month of March:                                                          This month’s emphasis is on LAYETTES.
GREETING & USHERING: Harold & Darlene Mattingly, Ron & Mary Beth         Please be sure that all items are NEW.
Peterson, JoAnne & Chris Barke, Bill & Sandy Underwood, Vicki
Gushwa, Ken Elfstrum, Denise & Steve Ishaug, Donna Heck and Darren
                                                                            6   cloth diapers
Dunlop, Linda Ward
LAY READERS: Leah Nicholson, Greg Brown, Leon Hixon                         2   shirts or 2 one-piece body suits
ORGANIST/PIANIST: Lorna Williams, Karol Zitzow, Deb Olson                   2   baby wash cloths
SPECIAL MUSIC: Choir                                                        2   gowns or sleepers
COFFEE FELLOWSHIP: Fellowship Committee, Youth with Becky                   2   diaper pins
Carlson & Rhonda Miller, Verla Roos and June Heneman                        1   sweater, opening in the front
PROJECTION: Greg & Elizabeth Ewing Lee                                      2   receiving blankets
VIDEOGRAPHY: Jim Frost, Andrew Carlson
                                                                      Thank you for the Health Kits. We have six complete and 8 partial
                                                                      kits. Most needed are nail clippers and large combs.
You will find Picture Directories and Faith UMC Directories in the
Narthex. Please take yours.                                           Patti Kratky and Katy Gulya have volunteered to make one sweater
                                                                      apiece for the layettes. If there is anyone else who enjoys knitting
Address change:      Leon Hixon            218-251-5899               or crocheting, there are patterns available. Check with Katy in the
                     PO Box 14                                        office. We have donations of yarn for you to use.
                     Aitkin, MN 56431
                     tidepuddle@msn.com                               LENDING CLOSET
                                                                      Faith has several items that you can borrow during a time of recuperation
                                                                      and rehabilitation. Just check out what you need!

                                                                                                   Walkers –
                                                                                                    1 with a seat
                                                                                                   Wedge
                     PLEASE NOTE
                                                                                                   High John
  Our worship service is broadcast on Cable Channel 12 on
 SATURDAYS at 10:30 am.                                                                            Wheelchair
                                                                                                   Shower seat
                                                                                     The words that strike me in this particular passage are the words, “for the

                                                                                     common good”. It is the working of these gifts together – for the common
                                                                                     good – that makes the body complete.

                                                                                     Are all apostles? No. Are all prophets? No. Do all work miracles? No.

                                                                                     But it is the miracle of these diverse – and imperfect – parts working together
                                                                                     for the common good that make the Body of Christ so wondrous.
                             An Imperfect Perfect                                    What a great message for us as we start our Lenten journeys.

Dakotas Diary                                             March 1, 2007              Lent is a time when we are asked to look deep within our souls and to
                                                                                     honestly assess where we need to grow in our journey of faith.
A couple of weeks ago I noticed my piano had a couple of keys that were                We see the times we have fallen short.
sticking. There are few things I find more irritating than trying to play around       We see the doubts and the questions.
sticky keys. So I called my technician and asked him to stop by. One of the            We see the areas where we struggle with living out our faith.
things I like about this technician is that he loves to explain how the piano          We see all the imperfections.
works. Now, in college I took a lot of music classes, but I never took a class
that explained the inner workings of the instrument itself. So, I love listening     But I find great hope in the belief that God can take us as we are –
to him share his amazing knowledge of the piano – and my piano in                    imperfections and all – and with the incredible grace God offers, can still
particular.                                                                          create unbelievable beauty.

Well, on the day he came, he was at the end of his day and I was at the end          I admit that I listen even more carefully as I play my piano these days. And
of mine. So as he tweaked the two sticky keys, he shared something I had             my technician is right - I can hear the imperfections within some notes and
not known about the tuning of a piano.                                               some chords. But if I can step back and listen to the more expansive sound, I
                                                                                     can also hear how those imperfections add to the character and the
He said that you can tune a piano properly but you can never tune it                 resonance that complete the music.
perfectly. You might be able to tune it so that, for instance, all the “C’s”
sound great together, but that won’t necessarily mean those “C’s” will sound         This Lent, allow God to use your imperfect gifts for the common good.
good with other notes. You have to play that “C” within the context of other          Through those gifts, you will help to strengthen the entire Body of Christ and
chords and progressions and overtones, and even within the peculiarities of          move us closer to the Kingdom of God on earth.
that particular instrument. It’s only when you hear that “C” within the
                                                                                     Lenten Blessings,
context of the whole instrument that you can properly tune it.
                                                                                     Bishop Deb
In other words, to make a piano sound ‘perfect’ (if that’s even possible), it
has to be tuned a little bit imperfectly. And then he sat down at the keyboard       Holy Last Days                                            Holy Week, 2007
and treated me to 20 minutes of wonderful music played on that imperfectly
tuned piano!                                                                         I have a confession. I did it again this year. I did it last year and the year
                                                                                     before, and each time I swear I won’t do it again … but I do. I just can’t help
I’ve been intrigued by that thought ever since. In fact, it’s really quite a         myself.
theological statement.
                                                                                     There I was, walking through the supermarket, just about ready to go to the
                                                                                     checkout, when I went by the floral department and there - staring me in the
In Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians, he talks about the Body of Christ, with
                                                                                     face - was a simply beautiful bunch of yellow tulips. It was so grey and chilly
each adding his or her own gifts to create the complete body. We know that
                                                                                     outside, the grass was still very brown and my trees weren’t even thinking of
scripture well.
                                                                                     turning green, so even though I swore I wouldn’t do again this year, I
                                                                                     couldn’t help myself. Those tulips just called out to me – “Spring!” So I
Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are
                                                                                     bought them.
varieties of services, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of
activities but it is the same God who activates all of them in everyone.             I confess: each year I try to hurry spring. I get tired of the chilly days - tired
 To each is given the manifestation of the spirit for the common good.               of the threat of snow - tired of the darkness. I want spring – so I try to urge
 (12:4-7)
it along by putting those tulips (or daffodils) in my kitchen. I want to skip
this messy part of the year and go straight to the beauty of spring.

I want to – but I can’t.
                                                                                                        United Methodist Bishops Putting
The same can be said for Easter.                                                                       Wallets to Work Preventing Malaria;
                                                                                                      Congregations Urged to Buy Bed Nets
As we approach these last days of Lent, there is a temptation to want to hurry
toward the resurrection.                                                            United Methodist bishops are putting their wallets to work in the fight to save
                                                                                    lives by preventing malaria in Africa.
The Lenten season is a difficult one:
                                                                                    Bishop Janice Riggle Huie, president of the denomination’s Council of Bishops,
       We struggle with Jesus as he tries to help his disciples understand.        is urging United Methodists and persons of good will to skip lunch on Africa
       We anticipate the denials and betrayals he will endure.                     Malaria Day, April 25, and use their lunch money to buy a lifesaving bed net.
       We agonize with him as he prays in the Garden of Gethsemane.
       We flinch as we imagine the nails pounded into his hands and feet           “Malaria kills a child every 30 seconds in Africa,” the Houston-based Huie
        and as we hear the final words from the cross.                              said. “Bed nets are the most cost-effective way to protect children from the
                                                                                    mosquitoes who carry this killer disease.
This is a season we would rather skip, or at the least, hurry through, to get       “This is an easy, tangible way to make a difference. Join me. I’m going to skip
on to Easter.                                                                       lunch and donate $10 to send a bed net,” Huie said. “Skip a lunch. Send a
                                                                                    net. Save a life.”
But we can’t. And we shouldn’t.

To truly understand the meaning of Easter, we have to complete the earthly          Each $10 donation will pay for the purchase and distribution of an insecticide-
journey with Christ – painful as that is. We can’t hurry it. We have to walk in     treated bed net to a family in Africa, as well as education about its use. A
Kairos – God’s time – not ours. In fact, the blessing of these dark days is the     challenge grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation will match
knowledge that Easter is coming. So, difficult as they are, we walk these           contributions dollar for dollar up to $3 million.
days in hope.
                                                                                    “Nothing But Nets is a visible part of our long-term commitment to eliminate
As we read in Hebrews:                                                              malaria,” Huie said. “Providing comprehensive health care to the developing
“We have this hope, a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul.”                       nations of Africa is a long, difficult process. It will need to continue for
 (Hebrews 19)                                                                       generations.”

That’s what Easter is. It is a ‘sure and steadfast anchor of the soul’ not          The people of The United Methodist Church are a founding partner in the
only for this season of Lent, but for all those times in our lives when our paths   Nothing But Nets campaign. Other founding partners include the United
are filled with darkness, or anxiety, or fear, or uncertainty, or loneliness. Our   Nations Foundation, the National Basketball Association’s NBA Cares, and
hope is in the message of the cross – a message of life.                            Sports Illustrated.
So … as much as I love seeing those yellow tulips sitting on my kitchen table I
know they won’t bring spring any more quickly, but they will help me get            Huie encouraged local churches to join this effort by holding a lunchtime
through these last cold, grey days. They are a vivid reminder of the hope of        worship service focusing on malaria on April 25.
spring – the hope of new life – the hope of warmth and color. I know that
spring will arrive in God’s time – not mine.                                        To learn how to make a donation, visit
                                                                                    <http://www.nothingbutnets.net/> or www.umc.org/nets.
I invite you to walk these last holy days of Lent, knowing that God’s promise
of new life will be kept. For it is only by completing that journey that we are
truly able to celebrate the resurrection that comes on Easter morning.

May you have a blessed Holy Week and an Easter filled with new life!

~ Bishop Deb

								
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