Tuesday, November 18, 2008
Tinney Chapel Charge Conference 11-18-08
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Tinney Chapel UMC Laity Report, 2008, by Ronny Ellison
The people called "Methodists" in the community of Tinney Chapel, present this report to the 2008 Charge Conference.
Tinney Chapel remains a caring, and loving community. We have gone through very troubling times in the last few years, but we are in hopes of turning our church around to become once again all the things we were so admired for in the past.
Under our new leadership of Pastor Sue Gross, we have started on this rebuilding journey. To do this, we must reach out to new people, especially younger families. Through the last few years we have seen a great loss, by death, transfers, and moving away, and those who have been so faithful, but unable to attend because of health. But we have faith this can be overcome and with God's help we can continue serving Him in this community as faithful servants.
WORSHIP: Our worship service is more traditional with a blend of contemporary. The congregation prefers a more simple style of worship, as is the custom in most rural churches.
We observe all the special times in the Christmas year and feel God's presence is in this place.
The choir performs most every Sunday. Practices are on Wednesday nights after Bible Study. They prepare both a Christmas and Easter Cantata, which is not only presented at church, but at both nursing homes.
Our attendance is down, due to the reasons previously mentioned, averaging around 40.
EVANGELISM: Each first time visitor is presented with a coffee mug to welcome them and remind them to come back.
Sunday School remains strong at Tinney Chapel with 4 adult classes. We have no children at this time, but have volunteers willing to teach, should any arrive.
We have news items provided to the local paper. One of our own members is on the Conference Communication Commission and we provide a monthly newsletter, Tinney Chapel Times to members and visitors.
We have no organized evangelism program, but try to evangelize on an individual basis. Visitors are always made welcome, there is no racial prejudice in the church and everyone tries to make new people feel a part of the Body of Christ.
Many in the church have been on the Walk to Emmaus. There is a 3-day program at the local Johnston Unit, "Residents Encounter Christ" with a large group from Tinney Chapel participating.
YOUTH & FAMILY ACTIVITIES: I believe we are a loving family always with room for more. We have 4th Sunday dinners, fish fry events, ice cream socials, breakfasts, pie sales and have just finished our 7th Annual Cowboy Poetry gathering and Stew.
Tinney Chapel has a ministry for older members called O.A.S.I.S. (Older Adults Still in Service) with about 20 in attendance. They are involved in all activities.
Last Valentine's Day, one of our Sunday School Classes provided a candle light Valentine dinner with all the children doing the waiting on tables and serving the meals.
This year, Rural Life Sunday was celebrated a little different, and directed more toward activities for older members, as we do not have many children. Love is very abundant at Tinney Chapel.
MISSIONS: Missions from Tinney Chapel come through the church and various organizations in the church such as the Ladies Group, Men's Group, OASIS, Native American Fellowship, Sunday School classes and individuals. They are being reported here as one.
Contributions and items have been made to:
Morgan's Mercy Mansion (a drug rehab facility for women) Holy Highway Girls Home
Teen Challenge Ranch
Northeast Texas Child Advocacy Center
The Blessing Box
The Methodist Children’s Home
Cherokee Christmas and back to school
World Communion Sunday
Dan Hubbell ministries (missionary)
Ramsey family in China
Hurricane Relief for Gustov and Ike (flood buckets),
Cal Farley’s Boys Ranch UM Army (fed 130)
Nothing but Nets
2008 has brought many changes and challenges and as an older congregation this is not comfortable, but we are determined that in order for us to carry on the work of Christ, we must press forward to these challenges.
For we are not here to serve self, nor are we here even to serve for the existence of our buildings. We are here to be Christ like, and in order to be Christ like, self must be denied and Christ must shine from each of us.