Washing Your Betrayer’s Feet
“... having loved his own which were in the world,
he loved them unto the end” John 13:1b AKJV
This love thing ... loving with no expectations of love returned ... probably the very hardest thing anyone who claims to be a follower of Jesus could ever do. I know it is for me. I picture Jesus at that Passover meal, taking off his robe and washing the disciples’ feet. Imagine for a couple of moments when he got to Judas’ feet. Did they look at one another in the eye, Jesus still showing Judas genuine kindness and grace? Did Judas turn away, ashamed and frightened? Or did the Betrayer return the gaze, full of pride and a sense of victory? We do not know but we are sure of this: that while Jesus was ready and able to forgive Judas, Judas could not forgive himself and took his own life.
Betrayal, forgiveness, grace, and love ... the story of Maundy Thursday and Good Friday. It is an unpopular story - one that does not resonate in our culture. I was talking with my husband, Craig, about how infrequently I have experienced a foot washing. Perhaps it is because when we offered it, it was in a worship service when probably it should have been in a small group setting with people who know one another intimately. But then Craig added this: “let’s be honest - foot washing doesn’t get butts in the seats.” So true, let me speak only for myself, I’m uncomfortable with this act of pure humility and servanthood. I think many are. But following Jesus challenges all of us!
So, as we begin this new month of April and step through the most holy days of the year, may we challenge one another to move into uncomfortable places and project love, grace, and forgiveness to our personal betrayers and find hope for today, tomorrow, and the future. Live your faith, and may God bless you +
Grace and peace ~
Our office is finalizing the approvals of District at-Large Lay Members to Annual Conference. If your church would like to nominate someone to represent the District at AC2021, please email Paula as soon as possible at email@example.com.
Nominations must be submitted no later than Wednesday, April 14.
For details about AC2021, visit the FLUMC website at:
On Saturday, April 17, a team from the Atlantic Central District will be doing some work on a parsonage in the Port St. Lucie area. If you or your church is interested in helping clean up around the property, please let us know by completed the sign up form at the link below. Details will be provided when you sign up. Some of the work to be done includes pressure washing, washing windows, cleaning out gutters, etc.
On Thursday, May 20, 2021, Lovett H. Weems, Jr. and Ann A. Michel, authors of Generosity, Stewardship, and Abundance: A Transformation Guide to Church Finance (to be released in early May 2021), will lead a webinar for clergy on church finances from 9:00 - 10:30 AM.
Click on the sign up button below to register on Zoom for this webinar.
Thanks go to all who participated in the Pathway to Life events on November 20, 2020 and March 13, 2021. If you have any questions or need assistance from the Congregational Vitality (CV) Team, please contact Bruce Kitson at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Click on the links below for the slides and handout from the March 13 event.
Documents from Rev. Tim May at United Methodist Church of the Palm Beaches:
The Florida Conference Cabinet is preparing another full length worship service for use in local churches. On April 6, the service will be made available for use on April 11, the Sunday after Easter, or any Sunday thereafter. This worship service is once again meant to give a Sabbath break to our pastors and worship leaders who have tirelessly devoted hours to creating virtual worship over the last months.
As some churches are back to in-person, socially distanced worship, we will also offer a “sermon only” version. If you are interested in using the worship service in your local congregation, please register to receive it via email by using the link below.
A version of the service with Spanish translation will also be available.
The Florida Conference Cabinet