We cannot disciple people that we are not in relationship with. Discipleship begins with relationships. – the Rev. Junius B. Dotson

Over the last two weeks, the hallways have been full of new faces, dozens of them, in fact!

This summer we intentionally engaged with the people in our surrounding neighborhood, those right outside our doors that Christ calls us to reach. Our mission of reaching deeper into our community brings us into relationships with people from all walks of life. Our common work partnering with the UMC and community mission organizations gives us opportunity to love children and youth in our neighborhoods in new and creative ways – unlike our church has ever done before.  

This summer we opened the doors of our building and grounds for young people to experience this love of Christ. What a joy to witness this ministry in our hallways and on our grassy fields!

The radical hospitality of FUMC Plano embraced about 25 children the first week of August for GO Camp, a unique ministry of the North Texas Conference of the UMC. This provided a meaningful day camp that reaches under-served communities and provides new opportunities to develop young leaders. 

The next week we hosted mission partner CitySquare’s Preparation for Adult Living (PAL) Program. PAL was a class provided to 30 or more teens who are about to age out of the State of Texas foster care program.   They learned adult life skills to prepare them for this next phase of independence.

I am inspired by the work of our church as we embrace all people experiencing God’s grace through our staff, volunteers, community partners, and by our prayers and presence. By sharing a warm blanket with youth as the classrooms were cold, by welcoming into our offices as a place to sit and have lunch together. THIS is what Jesus calls us to do and be: to boldly show Christ’s love to those around us. We are the church, helping people grow in their faith making new disciples for the transformation of the world. 

Let’s start new conversations, continuing to think deeper about how we are connecting with our community. Let’s continue to seek ways to look outward, seeing and reaching all people around us. It starts with relationship in intentional ways. 

Look around on Sunday.  #SeeAllThePeople

Lisa Test
Minister of Outreach & Discipleship