In the movie version of “The Wizard of Oz,” Dorothy comes to a fork in the yellow brick road and wonders aloud “Now which way do we go?” A voice responds, “Pardon me, that way is a very nice way.” “Who said that?” Dorothy asks and Toto begins barking at a pointing scarecrow. “Don’t be silly, Toto. Scarecrows don’t talk.” Whereupon the scarecrow points in the opposite direction and says “It’s pleasant down that way, too.”
We’ve all been there or somewhere close to it. We come to a fork in the road, not certain of which way to go, and receive conflicting advice (unsolicited and often from the same source) on directional possibilities. The company has downsized and you’ve been laid off. Now which way do we go? The kid has finally graduated college but can’t find a job and wants his old room back. Now which way do we go? The lab report is inconclusive and there are eight different options for treatment. Now which way do we go? It’s hard to pray and Sunday morning worship just doesn’t do much for me, but I should draw closer to God. Now which way do we go?
Perhaps that’s where the disciples were. Gathered in a room in Jerusalem, they are startled when Jesus washes their feet and distressed when he tells them that he is leaving them. “I’m going to get a room ready for you,” Jesus says, “and you know the way to the place where I am going.” Thomas (whom I think would be better labeled Bold Thomas than Doubting Thomas because he is bold to say what the rest of us are thinking) says, “Lord, we don’t know where you’re going. Now which way do we go?” And Jesus, rather famously and frustratingly answers, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”
It’s the last sentence that causes most people trouble (what does that mean “no one comes to the Father except through me?”) but I would argue that the sentence before might need a moment or two of conversation as well. What does Jesus mean that he is the way, not to mention truth and life? What way is that? Now which way do we go?
This Sunday, Palm/Passion Sunday, we’ll take a look at that passage (John 14:1-11) for a few moments, try to discern a bit about what it means for the direction of our lives, squint to see which way Jesus is pointing, and reflect on what it might mean to walk the Jesus Way. Then, we will hear again the story of the way Jesus takes – the Way of the Cross.
I hope you can make all the right turns at all of your intersections and forks in the road and make your way downtown Sunday to join us as we enter into Holy Week together. See you on the Way.
Grace and peace.
- Easter Prayer Vigil: Sign up now
- Flowers for Cross: Easter Sunday
- The Carying Place: Volunteers needed
- Alliance Medical Center: March 28
- Easter Lilies: Order now
- Workshop on Centering Prayer: April 11
- JOY Trip to Durham: April 16, Register by April 8
- Cross & Key Banquet: April 17
- Church Birthday Celebration: April 19
- Bolivia Chickin’ Pickin’: April 24
- Silencio Retreat: Registration Open through April 17
- Purple Cloth Run: May 2, Registration Now Open
- GriefShare: March 19-June 18
Opportunity to Pray Without Ceasing: Good Friday to Easter Morning
Please plan to join our church family as we keep an intercessory Prayer Vigil beginning at 8:00pm Friday, April 3 following the Good Friday Service and ending at 6:00am on Easter Sunday, April 5.
Sign up for 30-minute long periods of time when you will pray. You can pray at home during your designated time, or you may come to the Sanctuary to pray. The Narthex doors will be open and the church will be staffed for your security for the duration of the Prayer Vigil. You may sign up for as many 30 minute periods as you would like. Also, we are glad to have more than one person praying during each session. Remember that you are blessed to be a blessing. Bless God and others as you share the gift of prayer. Click here to Sign up!
BRING FRESH FLOWERS FOR THE OUTDOOR CROSS
In observance of Holy Week, you will notice on the church lawn, a bare cross that focuses our attention on the suffering and death of Jesus. On Easter Sunday this cross will be transformed into a living symbol of the hope we have in the resurrection and the promise of life and new beginnings. On Easter Sunday please bring a fresh flower to place on the cross and personally experience its transformation to new life.
Come learn about Alliance’s garden, transplant our spring seedlings and dedicate the garden to our patients. No experience needed! This Saturday, March 28, from 9:30am – 12:00pm. The clinic will be open for tours: Alliance Medical Ministry, 101 Donald Ross Dr., Raleigh 27610.
URGENT VOLUNTEER NEEDS AT ALLIANCE:
- Patient Service volunteers to help check-in patients and assist our Patient Services Team
- Interpreters (clinic & patient services)
THE CARYING PLACE: VOLUNTEERS NEEDED
Together We Can Fight to End Homelessness
The Carying Place, located at 491 James Jackson Avenue, Cary, is seeking volunteers in many areas, such as support partners, caring sponsors, selection team, children’s program, meal coordinator, meal provider, furniture and family moving help, housing maintenance, professional services, aftercare and office help. If you wish to volunteer in any of the areas mentioned, please contact Sameena Rashid, Office Manager at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 919-462-1800 if you have questions about the volunteer position.
TIME TO ORDER EASTER LILIES
Easter lilies may be ordered in memory of or in honor of someone and will decorate the church on Easter Sunday. The church office must receive orders no later than noon on March 31, accompanied by your payment of $15 each. Please take your lily home by 12:30 on Easter Sunday. Unclaimed lilies will be offered to anyone who would like one. Feel free to take one for yourself, a friend or insider. You may click here to place your order or pick up an order form from the church lobby or sanctuary.
CENTERING PRAYER WORKSHOP
FUMCC will host a One Day Introductory Workshop on Centering Prayer, led by instructors from Contemplative Outreach of Central and Eastern North Carolina, on Saturday, April 11, in Room 200 from 9:45am to 3:00pm.
The Workshop will explain the method of Centering Prayer and explore prayer as relationship with God, the importance of intention and consent, and how the fruits of the prayer are manifest in daily life. Please click here and indicate your choice of lunch selections for the free lunch provided. For more information, contact Lin Osbourne at email@example.com or call 919-434-7299.
The JOY group will head to Durham April 16. This trip includes lunch at The Weather Vane, shopping at Southern Seasons, and a tour of the Sarah P. Duke Gardens. The FUMCC bus will leave our parking lot at 10:45am. The cost is $35 which includes lunch, the gardens, transportation, tips, taxes, etc.
Your lunch options are:
- Fried Green Tomato BLT
- Almond Tarragon Chicken Salad
- Quiche Du Jour
- Latta’s Farm Egg Salad & Bacon Sandwich
- Dessert choices:
- Chocolate Creme Brulee
- Banana Pudding Cheesecake
- Click here to RSVP by April 8. The Weather Vane requires a count one week in advance.
CROSS & KEY BANQUET: Benefit for Disciple Bible Outreach Ministries
Friday, April 17, 2015, 6:30-8:30pm in the Fellowship Hall
There will be a Silent Auction, Live Music and the Voice of the Duke Blue Devils, Bob Harris, will be the Master of Ceremonies. There is no cost to attend or for the meal. Contributions will be accepted, however, for the ministry. Click here to RSVP.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, FUMCC!
There’s a very important birthday coming up April 19: the 144th birthday of First United Methodist Church Cary. The Endowment Committee is planning a party with cake. We’re encouraging Sunday school classes, small groups and circles, youth groups and individuals to give birthday gifts of multiples of 144. Every bit will go into our endowment fund so we can continue celebrating for another 144 years and beyond. On Sunday, April 19, please visit First Cup between 9:00 and 11:00am. Bring your birthday gift, have a slice of cake, and enjoy a time of fellowship with your church family as we celebrate FUMCC.
SAVE THE DATE: April 24 for the Bolivia Chickin’ Pickin’. Tickets go on sale April 6!
SILENCIO (SILENT RETREAT)
Date/Time: Saturday, May 30, 1:00pm (leave FUMCC at 10:00am) to Sunday, May 31, 1:00pm (returning to FUMCC by 4:00pm)
Retreat Cost: $125 (includes single room, Saturday dinner, Sunday breakfast and lunch) $95 (includes double occupancy room, Saturday dinner, Sunday breakfast and lunch)
Location: St. Francis Springs Prayer Center in Stoneville, NC (near Greensboro).
Please register here by April 17. Led by Laura Osborne, Becky Stafford, Judith Stephens and Charlotte West.
5K PURPLE CLOTH RUN FOR DORCAS MINISTRIES
The Genesis UMC 5k Purple Cloth Run will be held Saturday, May 2 at Bond Park at 8:00am. In addition to the adult 5k run there is a Kiddie run, a bounce house, snacks and even raffle prizes. For more information click here. Registration is now open!
GRIEFSHARE OFFERS HOPE AND HEALING
13 weeks, Thursdays, March 19 – June 18