Spring 2017 Gatherings

St. Paul's United Methodist Church (map)

Discover ways to connect, serve, worship and learn together through Spring 2017 Gatherings, including:

  • Fellowship Friday - February 24. Register now.
  • Small groups during the season of Lent
  • Parenting classes
  • Care and support for grief, divorce, veterans and more
  • Prayer, art and labyrinth practices
  • Mission opportunities


Pictorial Directory Information

The roster portion of the upcoming pictorial directory will include members' family/individual names, physical addresses, and designated primary telephone numbers, per information in church records.

If you do not want any of this information included -- or if you want to make sure the information we have for you is accurate -- please contact Donna V. Adair by the end of Sunday, March 12.

You may contact her via email at dadair@stpaulshouston.org or cell phone at 713-705-6542.

Autism, ADHD

Wendy Dawson, founder and director of Social Motion Skills, will talk with St. Paul’s United Methodist Women about the organization’s work with and services for children and youth on the Autism spectrum and those with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD).

The group will meet in J-204 on Tuesday, February 21, at 10:30 am. All women are invited. Questions about the about the group: Jennifer West at jwest@stpaulshouston.org.

For more about the speaker and her organization, please see www.socialmotionskills.org.

Chapter One Book Group

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Tonight's book for discussion will be The Heart is a Lonely Hunter by Carson McCullers.

Chapter One Book Group is open to anyone who enjoys reading and discussing a wide variety of books. The group meets the third Tuesday of the month at 7 p.m. in J-202.

In lieu of the regular March meeting, the group is encouraged to attend a reading in the Sanctuary by Colson Whitehead, author of the award-winning The Underground Railroad. For reservations, please see the Brazos Book Store website.

To be added to the email list, please contact Linda Harmes at hblinda@hibit.com

Human Trafficking: Making a Difference

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Ann Johnson, the former Assistant District Attorney human trafficking specialist focusing on protecting victims and prosecuting those who exploit them, now in private practice, and change advocate Bethany Williams, both St. Paul’s members, will talk with the St. Paul’s Moms group on Wednesday, February 22, from 9:30 to 11 am in the Youth Center.

They will address awareness of human trafficking and how individuals can make a difference. Moms of all ages are welcome.

Questions? Jennifer West via jwest@stpaulshouston.org.

Personal Hygiene Products for EAC Clients

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On Sunday, February 26, barrels will be at church entrances to collect personal hygiene products to be given to Emergency Aid Coalition (EAC) clients. EAC volunteers and staff will be on the Plaza that day to answer questions about the organization and its work. 

Please consider donating:

For Individuals: 

  • toothbrushes
  • combs
  • washcloths
  • nail clippers
  • small/individual sizes of
  • soap
  • toothpaste
  • deodorant
  • lotion
  • shampoo
  • conditioner
  • hand sanitizer
  • facial tissues

For Families: larger sizes of toothpaste, soap, shampoo, AND conditioner

Thank you for all you do to help this community.

Divorce Support Seminar for Parents and Children

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Families undergoing a divorce are invited to attend a seminar that will include separate sessions for adults and children.

Psychologist Dr. Sarah Pollack, attorney Scott Ramsey; David Spaw of Healing Circles Houston, and Ellen Edwards, St. Paul’s Director of Children’s Ministries, will address some of the many issues that may arise in divorce. 

This gathering will be on Sunday, February 26, at 12:15 pm in the Fellers Room (S-312). RSVP to info@stpaulshouston.org or 713-528-0527, indicating the number attending, including children needing childcare.

Following this gathering, six concurrent sessions of healing circles for adults and a divorce recovery curriculum for children will be offered.

Lent 2017: A House of Prayer for All Nations

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This Lent (March 1–April 15, 2017), we center ourselves around the prayers of God's beloved people throughout the corners of the world and here at our doorsteps in the city of Houston. To be a house of prayer for all nations is to be who we already are in Christ – continually being formed in faith, hospitable in the deepest sense, rooted in worship, sent out in mission.

Won't you join us? Find out more at www.stpaulshouston.org/lent

Ash Wednesday

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Begin the Lenten season with the Ash Wednesday Breakfast at 7 am March 1. Hosted by the Men’s Lectionary Bible Study in Fondren Hall, the speaker will be Rev. Emily Chapman, former St. Paul’s associate, now senior minister of St. Mark’s UMC in the Heights. Cost of the breakfast is $10 per person.

Ashes will be offered 8 am-7 pm in the Sanctuary, during St. Paul’s School pick-up and drop-off times on the Plaza, and 11 am-1 pm near Abraham Station.

Three Ash Wednesday services will be conducted, all including the imposition of ashes. The 12:15 and 7 pm services will be in the Sanctuary, the earlier one with Holy Communion, the evening one an Evensong service led by St. Paul’s Choir. A Servicio Miércoles de Cenisa (Spanish/English) will be at the Lenten prayer pole on the corner of Main and Binz at 5 pm.

All are invited to write a prayer in your own heart language and tie it to the ribbons on the Prayer Pole that will be a temporary installation on the corner of Main and Binz. From a concept developed from totem poles, Tibetan prayer flags, and Via Dolorosa (Way of the Cross), this interactive prayer station will open on Ash Wednesday, March 1. Watch the Prayer Pole as it changes and deteriorates; it will transform into a new creation on Easter Sunday.

For a complete Lenten schedule, including devotionals and Lenten Recital Series, please see www.stpaulshouston.org/lent

Rodeo Parking

For most of March, St. Paul's UMC will open its parking lot for those attending the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo and related activities.


Q: Should I have a parking permit (hang tag)? 
A: We're encouraging all St. Paul's staff, members and visitors to have a parking permit, available at the church's reception desk.

Q: What if I don't have a parking permit (hang tag)?
A: Don't worry! Simply let the parking lot attendant know you are attending an event at the church or day school. You will not have to pay to park.

Q: How can I get my own parking permit (hang tag)?
A: On Sundays, check with the Welcome table that usually is in front of the Jones Building. During the week, pick one up at the church's reception desk.

Q: What do I do with my parking permit (hang tag)?
A: Hang it from your rear-view mirror or display it on your dashboard for ease in entering the parking lot. 

Q: When will the lot be open for HLSR parking?
A: Parking for pre-rodeo activities, such as the cook-off, will be available starting at  noon Thursday, March 2, through to the end of the rodeo on Sunday, March 26. On each Sunday in March, the parking attendant will begin letting vehicles park in the lot for paid rodeo parking starting at 1 pm.

Q: Will this affect morning worship and/or classes on rodeo Sundays?
A: No, not at all. The lot will be solely reserved for St. Paul's UMC members and visitors as usual on Sunday morning for worship and classes. No one will have to pay to park and there should be plenty of parking spots available.

Q: What is the fee to park for the rodeo and related activities?
A: Paid parking for the these activities will be $20/day in St. Paul's lot.

Q: Where will that revenue go?
A: All proceeds will go toward the general budget that undergirds the ministries of St. Paul's.

If you have any other questions, please contact Marisa Cisneros at marisa@stpaulshouston.org or (713) 528-0527.

Lenten Recital: Bryan Anderson, Organist

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The first Lenten Recital of the 2017 series features organist Bryan Anderson. St. Paul's current Organ Scholar, he will present selections from the repertoire of Bach, Wido, and Ireland. The recital is free of charge.

Anderson is an organist native to Georgia.  Currently working toward a master's degree at Rice University under Ken Cowan, Bryan's undergraduate work was at the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia, where he earned degrees in organ (studying with Alan Morrison) and harpsichord (with Leon Schelhase). 

A rising concert artist, Anderson has performed at venues including the Kennedy Center, Verizon Hall in Philadelphia, Woolsey Hall at Yale, Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, Princeton University Chapel, and the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York. He also has been featured in performance at conventions of the American Guild of Organists and the Organ Historical Society. 

His recent positions have been as organist at St. Mark’s Episcopal Church and Tenth Presbyterian Church in Philadelphia, as well serving as an assistant organist of the Wanamaker Grand Court Organ in Macy's department store for several years. 

For the past year (2015-2016), he held the post of Organ Scholar at Wells Cathedral in Somerset, England. In addition to work at the organ, Anderson has enjoyed extensive collaboration as a chamber musician, performing many times as a continuo artist and ensemble pianist.

For the complete 2017 Lenten Recital Series Schedule, please see www.stpaulshouston.org/chambermusicsociety

The annual Lenten Recital Series is presented by the  St. Paul’s Chamber Music Society, whose generous donors have supported music at St. Paul’s for more than 30 years. We remain profoundly grateful to so many, including those around the country, who stay close to St. Paul’s with their support from afar. If you would like to make a tax-deductible donation or if you would like to receive notices about upcoming performances, please contact Dawn Uebelhart at 713-528-0527 or dawn@stpaulshouston.org.

Parenting and Praying Together

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In the season of Lent we will have a space to gather and work through practices of prayer and parenting children in their single-digit years. 


Facilitated by Lacy Webster in J-204.

Labyrinth Prayer Walk

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Individuals, friends, Sunday school classes and families are invited to experience prayer while walking the labyrinth.

Facilitators Karen Kelley and Hattie McKinley will be available  to answer any questions you may have.

This is a come-and-go activity so you set the pace. 


Parenting Our Parents

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Parents Matter offers the opportunity for discussion among parents of children whose own parents need attention and assistance as they develop challenges in their activities and living.

Meet in J-008.

Tattoos on the Heart

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Read Father Gregory Boyle’s book Tattoos on the Heart: The Power of Boundless Compassion and discuss God’s boundless compassion and the improbable places where it finds us.

Discussions will be facilitated by Rev. Dr. Matthew Russell and Rev. Gregg Taylor. Meet in J-220 at 11:05 am from March 5 to April 9.

The group will live-link one Sunday to talk to some of the Homies from Homeboy Industries in L.A.

Bolivia Mission Trip

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Adults and families are invited to travel to our Bolivian sister churches to help with construction, children's programming, and other ministry.

The dates will be July 5 to 14, 2017.

An informational meeting detailing trip cost and plans will be held Sunday, March 5 at 12:15 pm in the Chapel. If interested, please contact Amy Taylor, Director of Missions, via ataylor@stpaulshouston.org.

Life Interrupted: When Loving Your Neighbor and Life's Demands Collide

Mission Milby (map)

What does it mean to love neighbor toward the common good?

Is God calling us locally, globally or both?

Come join the conversation with facilitators Rev. Karyn Richards-Kuan and Amy Taylor, Director of Missions.

Mondays at 6:30 pm, from March 6 to Apruil 10.

Location: Mission Milby in the East End (2220 Broadway 77012)

Bridges to Contemplative Living

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The Young Adult Lenten Study will be guided by Bridges to Contemplative Living with Thomas Merton: Lent and Holy Week series as we discuss and reflect upon Lenten themes that can lead to a more vibrant spiritual life.

Pastoral Intern Sadie Brink will facilitate. Tuesdays at 7 pm from March 7 to April 11 at an off-site location to be determined by participatnes.


Seeking the Welfare of the City: Decoding Whiteness, Race, and Reconciliation

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Join Rev. Dr. Matthew Russell, Rev. Karyn-Richards-Kuan, and others in a three-part series engaging important texts around racial dynamics and how they impact the social, spiritual, and moral welfare of our city.

Meet in Fondren Hall the Wednesday evenings of March 8 and 22 and April 5 from 7 to 8:30.

Famous Trees of Texas

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In celebration of the 100th anniversary of the Texas Forest Service, Gretchen Riley co-authored an update of the Famous Trees of Texas, telling the stories of 101 trees throughout the state.

Treaty Oak, Travis County, Texas

Treaty Oak, Travis County, Texas

Some are old friends, featured in the first edition and still alive; some are newly designated, discovered as people began to recognize their age and value. All of them remain “living links” to the state’s storied past.

She will share some of those stores at the March 9 Primetimers meeting. A staff forester with the Texas A&M Forest Service, Riley provides coordination and assistance for various urban forestry programs. She holds a Master in Forestry from Texas A&M University and is a Certified Forester and an ISA Certified Arborist.

To enable those wanting to attend that day’s Lenten Recital, the gathering begins at 10 am and the program at 10:30. An $8 lunch will be served at 11:30 to those who RSVP by March 7 to 713-528-0527 or info@stpaulshouston.org.

The Famous Trees of Texas website includes information about the trees, organized by tree name, historical period, historical topic, specires, county, and tours.

Chapter One Book Group

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In lieu of the regular March meeting, the Chapter One Book Group is encouraged to attend a reading in the Sanctuary by Colson Whitehead, author of the award-winning The Underground Railroad. For reservations, please see the Brazos Book Store website.

The group will discuss the book at its April 18 meeting.

To be added to the email list, please contact Linda Harmes at hblinda@hibit.com

Mitzvah Day

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Mitzvah Day for Rise Against Hunger
(formerly Stop Hunger Now)

Goals: 200 volunteers to package 50,000 meals and
raise $15,000 to purchase the meals

Two shifts: 9–11 am and noon–3 pm
More information and register or donate via www.stpaulshouston.org/mitzvahday

Questions? Email Amy Taylor via ataylor@stpaulshouston.org

Grant Applications Available

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The St. Paul’s Methodist Foundation of Houston is now receiving grant applications for 2017. The purpose of the grants is to support and further the ministries, programs, and outreach of St. Paul’s United Methodist Church. 

The Foundation seeks grant applications from organizations and ministries that support the needs of children, youth, adults, and senior adults in the Houston area, in our nation, and throughout the world. Special attention is given to those agencies that are connected to St. Paul’s UMC and its members and that support those in need and at risk.

Grant applications are available at www.stpaulshouston.org/foundation-grants or by emailing the Foundation at Foundation@stpaulshouston.org. Completed applications are due no later than May 15, 2017.

Questions? contact Rev. Rick Goodrich via rgoodrich@stpaulshouston.org.