July 2018 -- Connector

Holland's United Methodist Church

The Connector

Holland's United Methodist Church

July 2018




     Some of you may remember in my very first sermon here at Holland’s (July 2 nd 2017), that I mentioned I was a direct descendent of one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence, Charles Carroll of Carrollton. He was the only Roman Catholic to sign the Declaration and the last one to die, dying at the age of 95 in 1832. Many years removed from this event we forget many things about our Declaration. Signed by 56 men, it was not signed by all 56 on the same day. While many signed it on July 4 th , 1776, others did not sign it until August 2 nd , 1776. Thomas McKean was the last one to sign it somewhere between 1777 and 1781. (Historians cannot decide).

     We also tend to forget the huge risk those men took in signing it. In the eyes of England it marked them as traitors and therefore marked them as men to be executed. It also meant their properties could be seized. Many have remarked about John Hancock’s bold signature, in effect telling the British “here I am.” Charles Carroll signature is also noteworthy. He was the wealthiest man to sign the Declaration of Independence. It is estimated that in today’s dollars he was worth $450,000,000! (No, I did not inherit any of that money!) In some ways he had the most to lose. Yet when he signed the Declaration, he told the British who he was and WHERE he could be found. He was CHARLES CARROLL OF CARROLLTON.

     As you celebrate July 4 th this year with food, fireworks, fun, and family take a moment to remember this declaration and those brave men and whisper a “thank you!” They set in place quite a foundation stone for us to stand upon.

     NOW – what does all this have to do with a letter from the pastor? Good question! The answer…? It made me think about being bold and when was the last time I was BOLD for my faith? When have I risked anything to let someone know I was a Christian and that I am a Disciple of Jesus Christ? When was the last time you were BOLD for Jesus who sacrificed everything for you and me? When was the last time you let the world know that you LOVE Jesus? You see as much as I love America, I have always understood my highest allegiance was to the Lord, then my country. I am bold for America!

Am I as bold for Jesus?
May that answer always be yes! How about you? Amen?


Rev. Rich  




Holy Communion – July 1
Independence Day – July 4
Lake Junaluska Youth Trip – July 5-8
ASP Trip #2 – July 15-21
Red Cross Blood Drive – July 16
Family Promise of Wake County – July 29 - August 1



     Come and join us on Thursday nights at 7:00 in the Youth Room. You will find Higher Ground a casual gathering with Folk and Americana music. The band leads the music with one of our pastors or a lay member giving the message. These services provide relevant messages for your everyday life.



     Support Garner Area Ministries through our church-wide summer food drive sponsored by First Journey Circle. School is out and that means no free or reduced cost breakfasts and lunches will be available for many local children who participate in the program. Food pantries are often sparse during the summer months. Help stock the shelves at Garner Area Ministries so they can continue to meet the short-term needs of qualifying families experiencing financial hardship this summer.

     Grocery bags will be available in the narthex during the month of July. A list of suggested non-perishable food items will be attached to the bags for your convenience. We ask that you fill as many bags as you can and return them to the fellowship hall or narthex by the end of the month. Your generosity is appreciated!



Monday, July 16, 2:00 – 7:00 pm in the fellowship hall
Hosted by Holland’s United Methodist Men
American Red Cross Blood Drive: Need types A, B and O

     When A, B and O blood types are missing from hospital shelves, lives of patients are on the line. Join the #MissingType movement this summer to raise awareness that new blood donors are needed to save the lives of patients who depend on the generosity of volunteer donors. Donating blood or platelets can be intimidating and even scary for many people. Time to put those hesitations and fears aside, roll up a sleeve and help save lives.

     To schedule your appointment, visit www.redcrossblood.org and enter sponsor code: HOLL. For additional information please contact Sibyl Pedzwater Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 919-773-9149



     On Friday evening, July 20, 7:00 pm, The Carolina Boys will present gospel quartet music at Mount Moriah Baptist Church, 3000 East Garner Road, Raleigh. The Carolina Boys were voted the best New Traditional Quartet in The Singing News in 2015. The public is invited. Admission is free -- An offering will be received.



For Jacob Bowes and Heather McClung

Sunday, July 29

2:00 – 4:00 pm

Registered at Bed, Bath & Beyond and Amazon.

Please come and join us to celebrate this lovely couple!




     Our next Host week for Family Promise of Wake County is July 29 through August 4. The sign-up Board will be in the narthex by Sunday, July 1.

     Twice a year we turn the old end of the church into bedrooms and a living area for unfortunate families finding themselves misplaced in life. Many of these families are single moms. During the week we will transport them to and from the church to the Family Promise Center. We prepare meals and serve them when they return each evening. This time, I am going to combine the dinner host and the evening host into one. So the dinner host will stay until the overnight host arrives.

     The volunteer opportunities are: Dinner Host, Overnight Host, Weekend (Hot Breakfast) Host, Morning Van Driver, Evening Van Drivers.

   For more information, please contact Joey Neal - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 919-480-3908.


Joey Neal
Holland’s Family Promise Coordinator


Report from 2018 NC Annual Conference


The United Methodist Church

     The NC Annual Conference of The United Methodist Church was held in Greenville, NC, June 14-16. Rich Vaughan and Rich Cooper attended, clergy from Holland’s. Paulette Hackney and Vicki Hardee attended, laity from Holland’s. The theme of this year’s conference was Generosity in All Creation.

     The Conference celebrated the 50th anniversary of the unification of the Methodist Church and the Evangelical United Brethren Church along with the dissolution of the Central Jurisdiction, a segregated group of African American congregations, in 1968.

     Events of the conference included worship services, plenary sessions, special offerings, recognition of retirees, and special speakers Rev. Alfred Day, Bishop Jonathan Holston, Rev. Timothy Russell, Bishop Hope Morgan Ward, Rev. Pat Watkins, Dr. Bruce Stanley, Dr. Meghan Doyle, and Bishop John Schol. A financial overview was presented as well as information on insurance, pension, equitable compensation, a statistician’s report, a report on “A Way Forward,” camping and retreat ministries and other laity and mission reports. Saturday afternoon concluded the conference with the commissioning of Hispanic Lay Missioners, Commissioning of Deaconesses, recognition of first time local pastors, commissioning and ordination.

     A proposed constitutional amendment was voted on for the General Conference. The results will be available after all votes are tabulated. The proposal is in the 2012 Book of Discipline, Division One, add a new paragraph between current paragraph 5 and 6: “As the Holy Scripture reveals, both men and women are made in the image of God and, therefore, men and women are of equal value in the eyes of God. The United Methodist Church shall confront and seek to eliminate discrimination against women and girls, whether in organizations or in individuals, in every facet of its life and in society at large. The United Methodist Church shall work collaboratively with others to address concerns that threaten women’s and girls’ equality and well-being.” If voted and so declared by the Council of Bishops, this would become the new paragraph 6, and the current paragraph 6-61 would be renumbered as 7-62.

     Mission opportunities around the conference were shared as well as opportunities for service. Resolutions were amended and approved and are available for review on the website,  https://nccumc.org/ac2018/resolutions/.


     Any questions about conference may be addressed to Rev. Rich Vaughan, Pastor Rich Cooper, Paulette Hackney or Vicki Hardee.


Vicki Hardee & Paulette Hackney
Lay Members to Annual Conference



The Walk to Emmaus Retreat: The Men’s Walk is scheduled for September 20-23 and the Women’s Walk, October 11-14. Both retreats will be held at Camp Agape near Fuquay-Varina. If you are interested and need an application, or if you just want more information, please call Rod Poole at 919-721-9161. Don’t get left out!

One word frees us of all the weight and pain in life. That word is love.




     Reminder, Holland’s regularly scheduled monthly work dates are the second Thursday of each month.  We meet at the church parking lot at 8:15 am and caravan up to the food bank warehouse, where we work from 9:00 am to noon. There is no monthly commitment, no heavy lifting, just come and work when you can. We have a lot of fun working with others as the hands and body of Christ.

If interested in joining us please contact Bill Band @This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.



     Samaritan’s Pantry is an ongoing, church-wide ministry to help those in need.  Each month, we will suggest an “item of the month,” or you can bring an item you have on hand.  The proceeds are donated to Garner Area Ministries.  The Samaritan’s Pantry is located in the hallway near the church office.  For more information, please contact Lavonda Bagwell, 919-772-8171. For the month of July, the donations are fruit & fruit juice. 



     The Young at Heart Group (YAHS) will not meet during the months of July and August, so look for our September 20th meeting plans in the August newsletter. In looking ahead, we will be going to Greensboro, NC on December 18 to The Barn Dinner Theater for an afternoon buffet and show "Christmas, Christmas."  We will begin taking reservations at our September meeting.

Judy Best, Paulette Hackney and Jan Koot




Minister of Music – Contemporary

Applications for the Minister of Music - Contemporary (Connexion) are being accepted. Interested applicants should submit the application, which is available here, along with a cover letter to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or mail to Vicki Hardee at Holland’s UMC. A resume may also be included in addition to the application.

Review of applications began Monday, June 25. However, applications will continue to be accepted and reviewed until a suitable candidate has been retained.



Applications for the Pianist/Organist of Holland's United Methodist Church are being accepted. Interested applicants should submit the application available here along with a cover letter to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or mailed to Vicki Hardee, Holland's United.Methodist Church, 9433 Ten Ten Road, Raleigh, NC 27603.  A resume may also be included in addition to the application. Review of applications will begin Monday, July 16, however, applications will continue to be accepted and reviewed until a suitable candidate has been retained. 

The pianist/organist will provide leadership for both the choir and congregation by accompanying and providing music during choir rehearsal and two traditional Sunday services so that Holland’s United Methodist Church can more intentionally and faithfully serve as a “caring community that invites and equips people to follow Jesus.”

More detailed information can be found here.

Heavenly Wisdom

     In the 1930s it was legal for people to explode fireworks quite freely. Thus it was that in 1937, when the Fourth of July was on a Sunday, some of the youth in Paulding, Ohio, were popping firecrackers while the Rev. Eldred Johnston was starting to lead a worship service. A couple of loud explosions were enough for the pastor to realize that he needed to deal with the problem.

     Therefore, the preacher asked the choir director to lead a hymn-sing for a few minutes. Then he slipped out a door, walked out to where the boys were gathered and began talking kindly to them. “Fellows,” he said, “I used to enjoy shooting fireworks as much as you do, and I know it’s a historic way to show our patriotic pride on Independence Day. But don’t forget that many in this town are gathered in worship at this hour, and the noise is very distracting. Now, I don’t want to interfere with your religious liberty. All I’m asking is that you wait until church services are over — about noon — and then shoot your firecrackers all you want.” The pastor smiled at each of the boys and returned to the church.

     Writing about the experience later, he said that he half expected to hear rebellious explosions in defiance of his request. The boys, however, respectfully waited until the worship hour was over. Kind and sincere words explaining a problem and requesting help in solving it often bring desirable results. The book of James reminds us of what we might call “heavenly wisdom,” something we all need: “The wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, without uncertainty or insincerity” (James 3:17).

—Pastor Johnston’s experience, found in Liberty magazine



Grace M. Musuka

Serving At: Central Africa

Location: Cameroon, Africa, DRCongo, Africa, Malawi, Africa, Zimbabwe, Africa

Home Country: Zimbabwe,Africa

     Grace Musuka is a regional missionary of The United Methodist Church serving as coordinator of women’s work in Central Africa. Regional missionaries are selected and supported by United Methodist Women and placed in collaboration with the church’s General Board of Global Ministries.

     Grace engages in leadership training for women in Cameroon, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Malawi, and Zimbabwe, where she is based in the city of Harare. The program’s objective is to empower women as peace builders, healers, and economic developers in their communities, and as leaders in their churches. Many of the areas served by regional missionaries are recovering from the trauma and devastation of warfare. This work also promotes ecumenical collaboration.

     Born in Mutoko, Zimbabwe, Grace is a member of the Chisipiti United Methodist Church in Harare. She holds a certificate from Nyadire Teacher’s College in Mutoko and a Bachelor of Arts degree in home economics and biology from Drury University, Springfield, Missouri. She began her professional career as a primary school teacher, and has worked for many years as a lecturer through the Zimbabwean ministry of higher education. She joined the staff of the United Methodist Church in Zimbabwe as women’s work coordinator in 1998.

     She is one of six sisters born into a family with deep United Methodist roots in Zimbabwe. Her father was a United Methodist pastor and evangelist, although she was raised primarily by her mother, who worked for more than 20 years in clinics at mission stations. It was an environment of prayer and strong faith. Grace and her sisters helped with the growing the family’s food, her mother leading the way into the fields in early morning. “We worked together in the field and after an hour or so we would go home for breakfast and get ready for school. Our mother taught us by example.”

     One of her dreams was realized when she was able to study in Missouri; a door opened through United Methodist connections. Grace says that her faith journey has been shaped by “family prayers, quiet times, reciting and memorizing Bible verses and reading the Bible, participating in community work, singing in the church choir, and teaching Sunday school.” She believes that “through Christ all things are possible.”

     She and her husband, Peter Gonda Musuka, have two adult children, and they continue the strong emphasis on family worship and prayer.
     Grace is committed to helping people grow through their experience in Christ. She says: “It is good reason to praise the Lord when people find their sorrow turned to joy, illiteracy turned to literacy, insufficiency turned to sufficiency, and hopelessness turned to hope in a Christian environment.”

-“Search me, O God, and know my heart” (Psalm 139:23, NRSV).

We lay our joys and concerns before you, trusting your great love for us.