Adam Hamilton

Pastor Adam's Enote

Matthew's Ministry Weekend at Resurrection

Posted Sep 8, 2017

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Dear Resurrection Family,

My voice is still a bit scratchy this morning from shouting at the television set last night – the Chiefs played an unbelievable game against the New England Patriots in New England. The Chiefs looked like a Super Bowl team last night. Congrats to team members who are a part of the church.

I have several important things to share with you today, but let me begin with where we’re going this weekend in worship. As we continue with our series of sermons on Simon Peter, we’ll turn to the night of the Last Supper and Jesus’ arrest in the Garden of Gethsemane.

Simon Peter is highlighted in all four gospels that night. Simon protests Jesus’ washing of his feet. He falls asleep in the Garden of Gethsemane while Jesus prays (not once, but three times). After Jesus is arrested, while Simon Peter is standing in the courtyard where Jesus is being held, he denies being a disciple or even knowing Jesus three times. This story speaks to us with such power because there’s not a Christian who hasn’t denied Christ in some way – by their words or actions. I’ve done this too many times to count. Which is why this story is so impactful.

If you’ve ever failed God, or denied Christ by your words or actions, join us this weekend in worship.

Matthew's Ministry Weekend

At Leawood we’ll also be celebrating Matthew’s Ministry weekend. I love this weekend as we celebrate this ministry. More than 350 special needs children, youth and adults participate in one or more of our Matthew’s Ministry programs. One of these programs is our Matthew's Ministry Family Night Out, a monthly event that provides fun activities for participants. The next one is Saturday, Sept. 23, 5-8 pm, when we'll celebrate the start of fall and football. Wear your favorite football jersey and join us for a night of fun! Sign up to volunteer. You can also check out more ways to serve in Matthew's Ministry.

By the way, did you know that the Kansas City Royals and Resurrection members Rex and Jennifer Hudler’s Team Up for Down Syndrome host an annual “Special Day at the K” that highlights and benefits special needs programs in Kansas City? This year the game is on Sunday, Oct. 1 in the afternoon. That day the Royals will be honoring Jennifer Ross, our Director of Matthew’s Ministry, with the Buck O’Neil Seats. $5 from the sale of each ticket purchased through royals.com/specialday will go to Matthew’s Ministry and the greater Kansas City Special Needs community! I’d love to encourage you to head to the K that day (but be sure to purchase your tickets through the special day website). Jennifer will be interviewed by Fox News during the game, and there will be a luncheon for sponsors where Jennifer will be given 250 tickets to give to our families in Matthew’s Ministry.

Thank you Rex and Jennifer Hudler and the Kansas City Royals for your support for special needs children, youth and adults and for our Matthew’s Ministry! Congratulations Jennifer Ross for being recognized with the Buck O’Neil seats!

Hurricane Relief and Recovery Update

I want to thank all of you who gave generously last week for hurricane disaster relief. You donated $202,789 in the special offering for relief and recovery efforts. Another $40,000 was given by a community member to purchase heavy equipment for the Rio Texas Conference’s recovery efforts, deployed to help with clean-up and construction work. I’m so proud of you and grateful for your generosity.

If you were not here this last weekend but would like to contribute to this special offering, you can do so by clicking here. 100% of the funds you give will go to disaster relief through the United Methodist Church.

In addition, we’ll be sending teams to help in the clean-up and recovery efforts. We will likely have a team of early responders heading to the Texas coastline this week (we’re awaiting the go-ahead from the people on the ground there). Teams will start forming in the next few weeks, but you can help in other ways as well. We will have a Hygiene Kit packing event with Heart To Heart International on Sept. 15. Logistics and details are still being worked out, so look for details in next Wednesday’s Leawood enews.

Currently UMCOR (United Methodist Committee on Relief) has elevated the need for cleaning buckets. Please follow the instructions here for the contents and directions for proper assembly. Buckets must be completed according to the instructions provided. Bring your completed cleaning bucket to the Narthex of Building A by Sunday, Sept. 10. If you bring your completed cleaning bucket on Sunday, there will be drop-off spots located outside the Southwest entrance doors to the Sanctuary. This seems like a small thing, but these buckets are very important to the people trying to clean up their homes. We need to deliver these buckets to our Conference office by September 13, so dropping them off as you come in for worship this weekend is important!

9:15 Service Fellowship & Fun

Join other 9:15 am service attendees as they gather for a time of fellowship and fun! The potluck will be after worship on Sept. 10, 11 am - 2 pm at The Lodge at Ironwoods Park (14701 Mission Rd, Leawood KS). Fried chicken will be provided, but people with the last names of A-R are asked to bring sides, and S-Z are asked to bring desserts.

Please register to let our team know you are coming so we can make sure there is enough fried chicken for everyone. If you have yard games, a football or Frisbee, or any other fun thing to do outdoors, bring it along!

RezOnline Changes

If you worship online in the next couple weeks, you’ll start to notice some changes to the RezOnline website. Among the most exciting is that if you miss worship on the weekend, you will be able to worship “on demand” throughout the week rather than waiting for the next rebroadcast. You’ll be able to choose from the contemporary (Sunday 5 pm), modern (Sunday 9:15 am) or traditional (Sunday 11 am) service, which you can then participate in whenever and wherever you are. This will be particularly helpful for those of our worshipers overseas, but it will make it easier for those traveling, too.

Construction Update

On the construction front, the foundations were being poured on our Resurrection Downtown campus this week! Last weekend, Downtown worshipers wrote their hopes and dreams for Resurrection Downtown on cards which were placed in a sealed tube and buried underneath what will be the new floor of the new building this week. Take a look at this video of the occasion.

At Leawood, structural steel began to go up inside the former sanctuary as the new adult classrooms are being constructed. The playground equipment is nearly completed in the new playground. Here are a few pictures of the steel and the playground.

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The entrances to Building A (the new Narthex and Sanctuary) will be closed at 5 pm on Monday while work is being done on the Narthex floors in that building. People who need to get to classrooms and childcare will be able to enter through Building B – we'll have signs up to help guide you.

A Way to Reduce Fear

I just completed writing a book about fear (coming out next year). One section is on the “fear of the other.” We often fear those we don’t know or don’t understand. One way to reduce fear, foster understanding, and positively impact the world is to get to know the “other.”

I love that a group of our women in the church have joined with a group of women from the Jewish community to study and fellowship together – the group is called “Strangers No More.” The Crescent Peace Society, representing the Islamic community, is offering a gathering this Sunday afternoon at the Marriott called “Meet a Muslim.” It will take place from 1 to 3 pm Sunday, Sept. 10, and I thought some of you might be interested in this gathering. Click here to find out more. This looks like a great opportunity for you to meet persons from the Islamic faith, and for them to get to know Christians from Resurrection.

A Shelter in the Event of a Major Disaster

Finally, several of you asked last week if we have a plan to use our facilities as a shelter in the event of a major disaster in the Kansas City area. We’ve had just such a plan for many years.

When we opened what is now the Student Center, we developed the plan with the help of those who work in the field. We plan to use our buildings for shelter and as a staging area in the event of a major disaster. We anticipated that the kinds of disasters that could affect our area might include flooding along the Missouri and Kansas rivers, major tornados, and the possibility of an earthquake from the New Madrid Fault, which would see large numbers of people coming to Kansas City for shelter.

With the opening of our new Leawood sanctuary, the renovations of the previous sanctuary, and the opening of our campuses, that plan is being updated to include these additional facilities. So, the short answer is... Yes, we have always planned to use our facilities to help in the event of a natural disaster, and we are currently in the midst of updating our 20-year-old plan.

I have to run, but I want to encourage you, once again, to join us for worship this weekend. It will be an inspiring weekend!

In Christ’s Love,

Adam

Adam Hamilton

Adam Hamilton

Reverend Adam Hamilton is the founding pastor of the United Methodist Church of the Resurrection in Leawood, Kansas, a suburb of Kansas City. The church began in 1990 with four people (Adam’s wife, LaVon and their two small children) and a dream of creating a congregation where thinking people – non-religious and nominally religious people – would become committed followers of Jesus Christ. In the years since, the church has become the largest United Methodist Church in the denomination with over 20,000 children, youth and adult members and an average weekend worship attendance of 10,000. 

Hamilton is the author of 22 books published by Abingdon Press and Harper. His writings are known for helping readers to make sense of challenging theological questions, to explore the significance of the biblical stories, and equipping Christian leaders to be more effective in their work. His books have received numerous awards and have been used in over 20,000 mainline churches across the country.

Hamilton believes that vital mainline churches are key to reaching new generations of young adults who have been turned off by more fundamentalist expressions of the Christian faith. In the last eight years he has spoken to over 70,000 Christian leaders in 40 states on leadership and strategies for missional outreach. In 2012 he was asked by the White House to deliver the message at the National Prayer Service, a part of President Obama’s second inaugural activities. 

Recipient of numerous awards and honorary degrees, Hamilton earned his Master of Divinity Degree at Perkins School of Theology, Southern Methodist University where he received the B’nai B’rith Award in Social Ethics. He graduated with honors from Oral Roberts University with a degree in Pastoral Ministry. 

Adam has been married to LaVon since 1982, and she has been a critical partner in every dimension of Adam’s work. They have two daughters and one granddaughter.

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