September 21, 2018
Dear Topeka First UMC Family,

Over the last weeks and months we have been talking about how we can take seriously Jesus’ invitation to love our neighbors as ourselves. A number of you have shared stories with me about how you have reached out to share meals with neighbors (even people you thought maybe you didn’t like) and sought to know your neighbors more fully. I am grateful for the stories shared and the ways in which you are stepping outside of your comfort zones to follow Jesus!

Next month, on Saturday, October 13th, we will be hosting the first retreat of the Topeka Cohort of the Good Neighbor Experiment. A group of churches will be gathering together for instruction and guidance regarding how we might better learn to love our neighbors as ourselves (individually and as a community of faith). I am looking for a few more interested persons to participate in this retreat and be a part of the neighboring conversations. The event runs from 10am-4pm. Childcare will be provided. Please reply to this email if you’re interested in participating.

This weekend also marks the beginning of another downtown engagement week. These weeks have been designated once quarterly by our Downtown Engagement Team as a time for members of our congregation to make a concentrated effort to visit stores and restaurants downtown and to thank them for the role they play in our community. The bulletins on Sunday will contain a simple postcard you can use to offer your thanks. I invite you to make plans now to eat out or shop downtown sometime between tomorrow, September 22nd, and September 29th.

I am looking forward to worship this weekend as we celebrate God’s love together in community and conclude our series, “Why this? Why here? Why now?” Have a great weekend and I’ll see you on Sunday!

Grace and Peace,
Jeff Clinger
Lead Pastor
Topeka First United Methodist Church