Lent 2017: A House of Prayer for All Nations

St. Paul's United Methodist Church (map)

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

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.

Via Dolorosa

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The Stations of the Cross rendered in fiber art will be placed in the Chapel, and prayer beads will be provided for participants to string through a leather band and carry home as a reminder.

Facilitators: Rev. Nataly Negrete and Helen Spaw

The Chapel also is open at any time for anyone to walk through the Stations. Copies of the devotionals in booklet form are available outside the Chapel.


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 J-204. The remaining sessions are the Wednesday evenings of March 22 and April 5 from 7 to 8:30.

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.

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 to April 9.

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

Family Lenten Retreat

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Families with children from age three through fifth grade are invited to “Walk with Jesus” through stories, creative activities, and a time for reflection. Take-home Easter resources also will be provided.

Sunday, March 26, from 12:15 to 2 pm, beginning with lunch, in J-120.

Older siblings are welcome, and childcare will be provided for those under age three.

To ensure appropriate quantity of food, supplies, and childcare workers, please RSVP to info@stpaulshouston.org by March 23.

LinkedIn Lingo

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Going through a job change or seeking a new job?

Facilitated by employment consultant Gary Payne, the Employment Encouragement Group is open to anyone in a job transition or who can assist job seekers. Lunch and childcare provided.

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At this meeting, Payne will be lead a course on how to get the most out of using Linked In to successfully navigate the career transition experience. Attendees are invited to bring their laptops if they have one to use during the session. 

Meet on Sunday, March 26, at 12:15 pm in the Fellers Room (S-312).

Payne also will meet individually with those in the group to encourage and support them as they navigate through career changes or job transitions.  

Choral Evensong

This Choral Evensong in the season of Lent will be sung by the St. Paul’s Chamber Choir. Selections will include music by Philip Radcliffe, Purcell and Shephard, and the anthem, “Christ Is the Flower,” by Edward Chapman. The Chamber Choir will be conducted by Kirby Traylor, interim director of music.

College Bound: Preparing and Applying

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Parent P.R.A.Y., St. Paul’s group for parents of Youth, invites all parents of pre-college-age children to hear Megan Dorsey of CollegePrep, LLC .

A former Houston ISD counselor, Dorsey is co-author of Amazing Grades: 101 Best Ways to Improve Your Grades and co-host of The College Prep Podcast. She has worked for The Princeton Review as a Master LSAT Trainer, piloted a joint SAT prep program between Kaplan and HISD, and developed her own SAT curriculum for Houston high schools.  She also is the mother of a St. Paul's youth.

Meet in the Fellers Room (S-312) after optional dinner at 5 pm with the Youth. 

Questions? Tiffin Wilsford via tiffin@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 to April 10.

Location: Fondren Lounge (change from previously announced Mission Milby)

Lenten Recital: Da Camera of Houston Young Artists, Part II

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The fifth Lenten Recital of the 2017 series -- and first evening  recital in the series -- features Da Camera of Houston Young Artists, who will present lyrical masterworks from the Baroque Era and beyond — including compositions by Vivaldi, Pergolesi, and Rachmaninov. The Young Artists are Bethany Baxter, soprano; Kyle Comer, classical guitar; Callie Denbigh, mezzo-soprano; Wesley Ducote, piano; Amanda Galick, flute; Ingrid Hunter, violin; Sonya Matoussova, cello; Ben Roidl-Ward, bassoon; and William Shaub, violin along with special guests. 

In 2009, Da Camera of Houston launched the Young Artist Program, a chamber music professional development program for instrumentalists, singers, and composers. The Young Artist Program is designed to provide career-expanding experiences and training to the next generation of artists and educators, encouraging them to advocate for music in the community throughout their careers. After being chosen through a rigorous audition process by a committee of local musicians and educators, Da Camera Young Artists participate in an exciting variety of performances, workshops and school visits. They perform in traditional concert halls, museums, and schools.

More information about Da Camera and the Young Artist Program, including individual biographies of each of the artists.

This concert is presented in partnership with Houston Methodist Hospital.






Mission in Motion

The first event of this  year’s Mission in Motion season will be Run Houston on Saturday, April 1, at Minute Maid Park. Everyone is invited to join the team. The 5k and 10k walks and runs begin at 7 am, and the kids 1k at 8:30 am. 

Mission in Motion is a way for everyone in the church to get fit and/or give back. All who can are encouraged to participate in the athletic events, which range from 1k walks for children to triathlons for both children and adults. Each participant is asked to set up a fundraising page through which they earn money for their athletic endeavors that in turn will support a variety of youth ventures:

  • UMARMY: Local Mission Work for Sr High Youth 
  • JUMMP: Local Mission Work for Jr High Youth
  • Youth Service Days
  • Royal School of Church Music Gulf Coast Course
  • Iconoclast: Poetry Programs for youth across the City of Houston

For more information, including the event schedule and how to register, please see www.stpaulsyouthmissioninmotion.com

Lent, Easter Activities for Children and Famlies

Children’s Art Gallery
Enjoy rotating seasonal art display in Jones Building foyer. Many of these pictures are also in the Children's Lenten Devotional Booklet.

Walk through Holy Week
On Palm Sunday at 9:45 am, the GROW 2nd-5th-graders will host younger children in a dramatization of a child-friendly display based on Jesus’ last week in Jerusalem. 
The display will remain through Easter Sunday. Enter by
the life-sized donkey in the Foyer. 

Labyrinth Travel Guides
Leaflets with prayers, scriptures, and ideas to inspire family walks on the Labyrinth during Lent. Visit the Prayer Pole nearby.

Easter Egg Hunt
Saturday, April 15 at 10 am. Infants - Kindergartners on the Jones Building Playground. Activities for older children, who also may come early to help.

Amazing Parents, Amazing Kids

Does your child have ADD, OCD, dyslexia, developmental differences, or autism? 

If so, you are an Amazing Parent of an Amazing Kid, and we want to meet you. Please join us Sunday, April 2, at 12:15 pm in J-204 for lunch, fellowship, and compassionate connection as parents.   

The group will be led by co-facilitators Jennifer West, who is working on a graduate degree in counseling, and Helen Spaw, who holds a Masters in Art Therapy and Creativity from New York’s Pratt Institute. 

For more information, call the church office at 713-528-0527, or contact Jennifer at jwest@stpaulshouston.org or Helen at hspaw@stpaulshouston.org

Desert Mothers

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Dr. Tamara Lewis, 2017 St. Paul's Theologian-in-Residence

Dr. Tamara Lewis, 2017 St. Paul's Theologian-in-Residence

Travel back to the 4th and 5th centuries to visit with the Egyptian and Syrian ascetic desert mothers. Reflect on their wisdom sayings and practice meditative prayer.

The guide for this journey will be Dr. Tamara Lewis, St. Paul’s 2017 Theologian-in-Residence and Assistant Professor of the History of Christianity at Perkins School of Theology.

The class meets Wednesday,April 5, from 6:30 to 8:30 pm in the Fellers Room (S-312).  To reserve a spot, please call 713-528-0527 or email info@stpaulshouston.org.

Lenten Recital: KINETIC String Orchestra

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The final Lenten Recital of the 2017 series features KINETIC string orchestra.
This will be in the Sanctuary at 7 in the evening of Thursday, April 6.

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Formed in 2015, the conductorless string ensemble KINETIC aspires to enrich the musical vibrancy of Houston’s cultural landscape by providing live performances, distinct programming, and interactive learning experiences. With a strong emphasis on chamber music-making, KINETIC’s unique flexibility to size down to various smaller formations, as well as fill out to as many as 16 players, allows them to explore the unique sound worlds of strings: from the intimacy of the quartet to the full force of an orchestra.

Having recently completed its inaugural concert season, KINETIC already boasts an impressive and versatile repertoire, including chamber and larger orchestra works by Benjamin Britten, Igor Stravinsky, Ernest Bloch, Grażyna Bacewicz, Leoš Janáček and Eugène Ysaÿe, as well as world premieres by rising American composers Daniel Knaggs and Thomas Dougherty. The ensemble’s thoughtfully curated programs give platform to under-represented works in the classical repertoire, and through commissions, they expand the breadth of the string ensemble genre for the benefit of current and future generations.

Equally at home on the concert stage and in less traditional performance spaces, KINETIC's eagerness to bring classical music to a wide array of communities has led to a partnership with Houston Methodist Hospital’s Center for Performing Arts Medicine (CPAM) as well as with local public schools in presenting musical outreach events. KINETIC is the recipient of the Sviatoslav Richter Fund for Music Outreach, awarded by Rice University’s Shepherd School of Music. The ensemble has been featured on Houston Public Media’s KUHF and Classical 91.7, Houston Chronicle and Arts & Culture Texas Magazine.

Holy Week Services

Childcare is provided in the Jones Building during all worship services.

Palm Sunday - April 9. Worship services at 8, 9:30, and 11 am, each beginning on the Jones Plaza with a palm processional led by the children’s choir. Rev. Tommy Williams will preach all three services.
Monday of Holy Week - April 10. Communion Service at 12:15 pm in the Chapel. Homilist: Rev. Dr. Bill Gandin
Tuesday of Holy Week - April 11. Communion Service at 12:15 pm in the Chapel. Homilist: Rev. Elizabeth Duffin
Wednesday of Holy Week - April 12. Communion Service at 12:15 pm in the Chapel. Homilist: Rev. Dr. Bill Kerley
Maundy Thursday - April 13. 

  • Communion Service at 12:15 pm in the Chapel with foot washing. Homilist: Rev. Dr. Matthew Russell
  • Evening Service at 7 pm in the Sanctuary. Homilist: Rev. Dr. Matthew Russell

Good Friday - April 14. 

  • Children’s Good Friday Tenebrae Service at 11 am in the Chapel followed by a Labyrinth walk and snack, including hot-cross buns 
  • Communion Service at 12:15 pm in the Sanctuary. Homilist: Rev. Karyn Richards-Kuan

Holy Saturday - April 15. Easter Vigil at 7 pm. Begin on the Labyrinth
Easter Sunday - April 16. Morning worship services at 8, 9:30, and 11. Rev. Tommy Williams will preach all three services. Flowering of the cross all morning on the Plaza lawn. Children's church and Easter activities and childcare in the Jones Building all morning. Spankish/English worhsip service at 7 pm in the Sanctuary.

Chapter One Book Group

The book for discussion April 18 will be The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead.

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 pm in J-202.

The book for discussion May 16 will be True Confections by Katharine Weber.

To be added to the group's email list, please contact LInda Harmes at hblinda@hibit.com.


Grant Applications Available

St. Paul's United Methodist Church (map)

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.