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Revisiting Home Church in Columbia

On Sunday morning, May 5, Brother Frank and I visited Missouri United Methodist Church, which was our church home the nine years we lived in Columbia. It was the first time I returned to the Church, since moving back home to Terre Haute, Indiana, six years ago. Sister Cindy was not with me since she is visiting her mother in Georgia.

One thing about Methodism is that it is a constant. Methodist people tend to stick with their church; they are not church hoppers. I saw and chatted with numerous members with whom I was friendly during our Columbia years, including a few retired ministers. Sadly, I did miss some happy faces who are no longer in this world. They must have an even more joyful countenance now.

We attended “Seekers Class,” which for most of the time during our tenure was taught by two retired Methodist ministers, Dick and Otto. Both of these dynamic gentlemen were liberal theologically and socially but always allowed for open classroom discussion.

Dick and I regularly met for coffee during those years where we talked over our differences; we became good friends. Some around the church referred to us as “the Odd Couple.” Both of these men are now passed. Today we studied the parable of the Workers in the Vineyard. Cindy and I always had a good time during the week talking about the different views of those within the class.

Those whom might think Methodists are dead, should have been in the service the morning which featured, “Joy and Jazz Sunday” with a group of musicians called, Tim Whitmer Consort. One thing about Missouri United Methodist Church, the church always had highly trained and professional music. I am partial towards choirs over praise and worship groups.

Unfortunately, the preacher did not preach today because of the special music but from his comments he seemed to be a man full of the Holy Spirit.

MUMC is a beautiful Gothic building built in the 1920’s. I am partial to vaulted ceilings and stained-glass windows. The church is just down the block from Speakers’ Circle, where I upheld the doctrine of Christ crucified and resurrected at the University of Missouri as our flagship campus. Brother Frank and I will be holding forth there again through Thursday afternoon.

It was a wonderful morning. Sister Cindy and I have pleasant memories from our Columbia days, which for me mainly centered around MUMC. Sister Cindy was active in the community and headed the social activities of our home school group. During those years, I was on the gospel road much of the time so I was happy to have the roots and stability which a good church has to offer.

Those whom have difficulty finding a home church, I have trouble understanding. I have been in many churches over the years, that I believe that I could be at home. Of course, there are frustrations wherever one might attend. But is this not the case with family life and the work place? The responsible man does not change his family or walk away from his job; neither should he shun the church. It is easy to live the Christian life privately; the challenge is living for God in community


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