Jun 28, 2013

In Mission to Denver and Environs

This week our annual Sr. High Mission Trip has taken place, with our young people going to do mission work in Colorado (yes there is even a need there). We can be grateful that we have such a great group of youngsters and we, as a church, appreciate them and the adults who have gone with them this summer.

I recently read that mission trips were first organized over 200 years ago. Usually, they were intended for long term missionaries who would devote their whole life to some foreign field of service. In the last few decades, however, the church stressed youth in short-term mission trips, which encourage service to others and fellowship in Christ.

I am proud of our youngsters and pray for them as does our church that they might bear fruit worthy of the gospel. Make sure and welcome them home this next week!


Jun 21, 2013


Beginning on Sunday night, 28 June 2013 we will have our annual Adult Vacation Bible School. As at its inception, VBSA is for adults who are not able to make it to Switzerland, Bangkok, London, Paris, Singapore, or New York. If you cannot make it to Istanbul or Dubai this summer and you would like a deep look at the first chapters of the book of Genesis, then join us on Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday evenings.

As food is always an issue, we will eat a meal each night from 6:30–7 pm and then the study begins at 7 pm.

  • Sunday - Potluck salads
  • Monday - Build your own nachos ($5)
  • Tuesday - Boxes from McAlister's ($5)
Meals will be ordered according to sign-up. Nursery is available upon prior request. Registration is available online or in the main office (contact Rev. Kay Lancaster for more information  at 817-274-2571).

The first eleven chapters of Genesis tell about the beginnings of the world. Many scholars believe that the account has multiple authors and a later editor or “redactor” collected stories from various traditional sources into one volume. This is always such a good week at church each summer and I look forward to seeing you.


Jun 14, 2013

To the Graduates

Last Sunday, we celebrated the bright young faces of our young people who received a diploma—a formal certification of having reached an important goal in life. For all the changes we see in the world, there is a sense in which so many things remain the same.

On 24 May 1992, some two decades ago, Parade Magazine published Elie Wiesel commencement address for graduates entering an uncertain world—as we all did. What Wiesel said is no less important today. He was imprisoned in Auschwitz and Buchenwald—Nazi concentration camps during World War II. Most of his family members died there. The theme of his address was the dangers of fanaticism. He suggests that most of the significant problems in our time are rooted in fanaticism. Here are the closing paragraphs of his address.
I know: You have been tested during your years in school, more than once. But the real tests are still ahead of you. How will you deal with your own or other people’s hunger, homelessness, sexual or gender discrimination, and community antagonisms?

The world outside is not waiting to welcome you with open arms. The economic climate is bad; the psychological one is worse. You wonder, will you find jobs? Allies? Friends? I pray to our Father in heaven to answer ‘yes’ to all these questions.

But should you encounter temporary disappointments, I also pray: Do not make someone else pay the price for your pain. Do not see in someone else a scapegoat for your difficulties. Only a fanatic does that – not you, for you have learned to reject fanaticism. You know that fanaticism leads to hatred, and hatred is both destructive and self-destructive.

I speak to you as a teacher and a student—one is both, always. I also speak to you as a witness.

I speak to you, for I do not want my past to become your future.
As something of a teacher, I want all of us, young and old, to be reminded of the importance of continuing education in life, for life. For all the inadequacies of education alone to bring meaning and fulfillment to life, it does occupy an important place.

My friend, Tom Butts, once told me about one year while he was in high school, during the graduation exercises, a girl received her high school diploma and turned around and faced the audience, raised her arms and shouted: “Educated, by God!” If she thought she was educated with a diploma from a rural high school, she really was ignorant! Tom said he often wondered what happened to this over-excited graduate. Probably not much! Our education ought never stop. There is no excuse for being ignorant in today’s world. If you are going to be an effective citizen, with opinions worthy of being heard, then there is a certain amount of factual knowledge that you need. What you think is not nearly as important as what is true.

Become as well-educated as you can, and stay educated by continuing to study and think. We love our graduates and now they stand beside us in a world that needs a little enlightenment.


Jun 7, 2013

What in the world is a Methodist Annual Conference?

During the second full week of June, our lay leaders and pastors will attend the 2013 edition of the Central Texas Annual Conference in Fort Worth, Texas—at Arborlawn UMC. As several new church members (and we have many) ask me each year what Annual Conference is, let me provide something of an answer. An Annual Conference in the United Methodist Church is a regional body that governs much of the life of the broader or “Connectional" Church.

There are many Annual Conferences in world Methodism and they are composed primarily of the clergy members and lay member(s) from each ecclesial charge. On occasion, people ask “what is a charge?” And the answer is that a charge is one or more churches yoked together and served by a minister under Bishop Lowry’s appointment. In our case, we are the Central Texas Annual Conference. Generally, each annual conference is a geographical division. In Texas we have five annual conferences with the Rio Grande Annual Conference (Spanish speaking) superimposed over several others.

Pray for all our delegates Chris Olson, Royleen Cooper, Rezolia Johnson, Megan Hale and Leslie Valentincic as we represent a great church—FUMC of Arlington, Texas.

Sincerely, your friend,

David N. Mosser


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