…and also with you.
Not long ago, I joined Bethlehem First United Methodist Church. It is beautiful building, inside and out. The Traditional Service is considerably more structured than I had been used to as a Baptist, and might be considered more reverent High Anglican than Amen-Brother Baptist.
It is a milestone, in a way, as the last church I belonged to was Morningside Baptist Church in Huntsville, Alabama.
It’s been ten years and two states since I last attended there. Granted, occasionally I was a “Backslider” as the preacher at Morningside, Marty Jordan, used to phrase it. But I have been attending and searching for a church – and a Preacher who really spoke to me – since I left Alabama.
How I first came to attend Bethlehem First United Methodist Church was almost an accident. That story is here. But ever since I first walked through the very traditional doors of this beautiful, Southern, pillared church I have felt at home.
They have a choir and sing hymns from the Hymnal, not songs projected on a wall. The drums, guitar and boom-chi-chi-boom machine are in the Rock-and-Roll Service taking place in another part of the church.
The Preacher, Rev. Parker Benson, is a passionate man who includes such heart-felt personal stories that sometimes make it difficult for many of us – him included – to make it all the way through his sermon. Naturally, he is from the South, although he could be considered to be in a “mixed” marriage as his wife is originally from the north, Rochester, NY. She did, however, have the good sense to move to Kingsport Tennessee when she was in her teens.
Concerned with how the country seems to have been in moral freefall, particularly in these anything-goes, Obama-Chicago-thug years, his recent sermons have focused on The Sanctity of Marriage and that it is biblically and morally between one man and one woman, homosexuality and how the Bible calls it wrong, and abortion. Tough subjects but as the saying goes, “All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.” (Edmund Burke)
Here is a video of my joining ceremony.Share