For The WPT
With the rising temperatures, end-of school-celebrations and beginning of summer vacations, families are beginning to slide into the ease that is summer routines, and the folks at Eupora First United Methodist Church are doing the same.
“Beginning in the month of May with memorial season, and throughout the summer, our congregation’s participation and needs tend to slow down a lot,” said the Rev. Trey Harper, pastor at EFUMC. “So this year the worship committee decided instead of fighting the summer trends, why not embrace them.”
Beginning the first Sunday in May, EFUMC kicked off its Summer Worship with something a little different.
“For starters, we are encouraging our folks to dress comfortably for the heat,” explained Harper.
While the church has long had a “come-as-you-are” approach to Sunday dress, it is taking that a step further and encouraging people to lose the ties and come and loosen the collars.
Family Means Fun “It is really about coming comfortable. If comfortable for you is typical Sunday dress, then by all means dress up. But if comfortable for you is the kids in shorts, then you are welcome to do that too. We find that our young families, in particular, appreciate the more casual dress.”
But dress is not the only thing going casual this summer. The church is also freeing up their more traditional worship style and allowing congregational requests to shape worship music.
“We started several weeks ago letting people request their favorite hymns or songs and we are using these to create our worship music. We have had everything from Chris Tomlin to Fanny Crosby. It is truly something for everyone,” Harper said.
“We know that with summer schedules, a lot of times church attendance can slack off for even the most faithful of families. We just want to do everything to make it as easy as possible. Worship should not be the stressful event we make it sometimes. Church should be a place people want to come. For us, the church is our family. And in the summer, family means fun.”
Vacation Bible School next week In addition to the changes to weekly worship, this year the Children’s Ministries is hosting its annual Vacation Bible School much earlier in the summer.
“This Little Light of Mine” VBS will be May 30 through June 1 from 9 a.m. until noon. There will be activities for children PreK-sixth grade.
“Our parents and volunteers have got some great stuff planned for the kids this year,” Harper said. “It is sure to be a blast!” For more information or to register your child, contact the church office at 258-2611.