Open hears. Open minds. Open doors.
The people of The United Methodist Church
Hope for Our Future

What is your hope for our church in 2019? A better financial picture? Stronger attendance numbers? A ride to church? We tend to frame our hopes for the church around what we see and our perceptions about what is lacking. As time passes, we have become smaller in number, poorer financially with no clear change for the better in sight.

I point this out because we all think about it. It is easy to focus on what is lacking and take on a posture of resignation. But God does not leave us in despair. God continues to give us reasons to hope and believe in our shared church life. We continue on in worship, in fellowship and in ministry because we love this church. We continue to do our parts, each of us to be a blessing and to be blessed.

As we continue to consider our trials and the upcoming February “Way Forward” conference, let us strengthen ourselves through prayer. Let us be in prayer for our churches and God’s purpose in our collective life. I have selected three scriptures below for us to meditate on over the next two months.

Let us hope boldly and dream big but let us also just continue showing up for the simple things. Let us show up for whatever need God may have for each of us. Let us show up for one another in prayer and thanksgiving. Let us show up to be present to God.
Pastor Robin

“The Lord your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by his love; he will exult over you with loud singing.” —Zephaniah 3:17

“He has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you.” —1 Peter 1:3-4

“Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer.” —Romans 12:12

Hope for the Future – Our Leaders Share
I sent out an email to many of our church leaders asking them to write a paragraph sharing their hopes for the future. These are the responses I received. If you would like to write one, submit it and we will add it to next month’s newsletter.

Holly J.
My hope for our church in the coming year. The Methodist church has always been very near and dear to my heart. Being raised in the Chugwater church and then becoming a member of the Wheatland church, I have a double allegiance. Our church has been gradually going through changes concurrent of the times. As I’ve visited with several members of other churches, I’ve realized that we are not immune. Seems as though many of the traditional denomination churches have experienced the same changes that we are. My attendance at church comes from my need to spend time worshipping God and obtaining spiritual renewal each week. Also spending time with our church family has always been a motivator; being with fellow Christians is nothing but a positive in this crazy world.

My hope for our church in the coming year would be to continue praising the Lord through worship and music and providing a place for others be able to do the same. I still crave learning from the Bible as it was written and making it apply to everyday living. Although there are fewer to spread all the responsibilities of maintaining a church, my hope is that everyone contributes their talents in any small way. It takes a congregation to run a church!

Barb F. My hope and prayer for our church for the coming year is peace. May all of the members of the Methodist church enjoy peace on a personal level. But beyond that, my prayer is that the church will survive the current controversy. This prayer is inclusive of the Methodist church in its entirety but specifically our local churches. But the “church” is the people … it is the feeling in our hearts. I pray that the feeling in our hearts enables us to work as a unit to stay united. There may only be one way forward but we can survive with compassion.

Kelvin L. My wish for our church this year is that we can stay “United” Methodists. With the unknown of what will happen in February at the Special Session of the General Conference, it scares me to think our church will most likely be divided by the voting results. There will be people who disagree with the vote no matter what direction is goes and they will leave the church. Some people have already left the church, which is sad to me as we are supposed to be a church of “Open Hearts, Open Minds, Open Doors”. I pray we can put our individual views and beliefs aside and come together to be better servants and followers of Jesus Christ.

Rodene M. My hope for our church this coming year is unity. I would like to see our congregation and members come together in Christ’s name. I hope God reminds us, in his infinite mercy, to remember who the center of our church and life should be. I praise our Lord Jesus Christ and pray and hope for him to guide and direct the Wheatland United Methodist Church, as he plans. May we have a new year of restored hope, dreams and determination and succeed in a wonderful, successful and prosperous 2019! Praise be to GOD.

Crystal A. My hope for our church this year is to keep as much of our congregation as possible. We have slowly been losing members and it really breaks my heart. I would like to see our church expand with our congregation. I would love to find more ways to bring more people in and have them stay. I would like to discuss ideas that would bring people into our church. I would like to see better communication with all of us. I think that sometimes communication gets stopped between churches and I think that this will be important as we move forward. I think that it would be nice to see the churches join together and not be so separated. Maybe we can combine some of our church services this coming year, Chugwater going to Wheatland one time, and Wheatland going to Chugwater one time.

Calendar of Activities
Jan. 8th - Project Patricia at 9:30
Jan. 11th - SPRC meeting at 4:30
Jan. 10th - UMW meets at noon
Jan. 13th - Ad Council at noon
Jan. 13th - Chugwater Ad Council at noon
Jan. 16th – LOL starts back up at noon
Jan. 19th - Women’s Breakfast 8 a.m.
Jan. 19th - Men’s breakfast at 8 a.m.

Wheatland United Methodist Church

Worship - 11:00 a.m.
Fellowship – 12:00 p.m.
Facebook: WheatlandUMC

Chugwater United Methodist Church

Worship – 9:00 a.m.
Fellowship – 10:00 a.m.
Facebook: ChugwaterUMC

Wheatland Church Office

No office hours are currently not scheduled
Phone: (307) 322-3899
Email:wheatlandwyomingumc@ gmail.com

Giving History for 2018
If you would like a copy of your total 2018
Giving History, please contact Rodene. Thank You.

Commission on a Way Forward
Council of Bishops


The Way Forward ~ Special General Conference
February 23-26, 2019

The matrix on the next page provides a side-by side comparison of the two primary plans under consideration at the upcoming special general conference. The third plan, the Connectional Conference Plan (which would create three overlapping, but separate legal entities and each being deemed part of UMC), is not included because it appears that it is not being discussed at General Conference in February.

We are happy to answer any questions you may have regarding this summary or the three Way Forward proposals. Talk to Kelvin L. or Pastor Riley for more information.

by Kathy W. UMW President

The Wheatland United Methodist Women (UMW) assembled in the Fellowship Hall at noon on December 13, 2018, for a bring-your-own lunch and business meeting. Seven members were present. We received the monthly reports, as usual. We will renew our subscriptions to the New World Outlook and Response magazines if needed. We received a thank you note from the Legacy Home for our contribution for Halloween trick or treating event. We served 69 people after the Schaffner funeral. We decided to ask the families of the deceased to pay for the meats when we provide funeral dinners, because costs have risen so much. We will still provide the side dishes and desserts.

Project Patricia is continuing. We sent box number 70 in December, thanks to Barb S., who donated the postage to mail it, and took it to the post office. The next Project Patricia meeting will be on January 8 at 9:30 a.m. (We decided that no one should be asked to come on Jan. 1—the holiday, which is the first Tuesday of January.)

The UMW decided to make end-of-year donations to the UCC Food Bank, Wesley Foundation at the University of Wyoming in Laramie, Platte County Ministerial Coop, the Salt Lake City UMCOR, and Food 4 Weekends Program. We held our annual elections during this meeting. The 2019 officers for the Wheatland UMW will be: President-Kathy W.; Vice President, Ann C.; Secretary-Karyl W.; Treasurer-Myrna K.; Membership Nurture and Outreach Chair-Rowann S.; Co-Chairs of the funeral dinner committee-Carolyn F. and Ann C.; Project Patricia Chairman-Rowann S.; and Program Resources-Myrna K. We also discussed the 125th anniversary celebration. We decided that we should invite any pastors and pastors’ wives who may be available, as well as any members who have attended this church and are still in the area, to the celebration on April 28, 2019. The group discussed possibly ordering coffee mugs similar to those that were popular at the 100th anniversary celebration. Myrna found several items of historical information in the church library, which she provided to Kathy W.

All ladies of the church are invited to attend any of these events. We need all the help we can get to carry out the activities UMW does at WUMC and in our community. If you need a ride to any of these activities, please call Kathy W. at 322-1623. The next UMW meeting will be held on January 10, 2019, at noon. Bring your own lunch.

Bringing Good Will
Crystal, Darlene and Barb are collecting and what the church has contributed to the Lion’s Club basic baskets for local Chugwater people in need. They are putting the contribution together for 14 families. There was a total of 300-plus pounds of food contributed. Barb F. commented, “I just think it brings a lot of good will to the community.”

Hands at Work!
These are hand crocheted items for veterans. They are taken to the Cheyenne VA where many of the items will be given to long-term care patients. Toiletries are also included in this donation. Multiple people have contributed to the knitting. Blankets were also given to the Chugwater Volunteer Fire Department.

Christmas Parade & Living Nativity
The United Methodist Church (WUMC) participated in the annual Christmas parade in downtown Wheatland, Wyoming, on December 2nd. Some of our local ranchers gathered together a cow, a donkey, sheep, and a goat for the display, two of our members put together our “stable” on the courthouse lawn (with permission). We gathered together costumes and volunteer actors to play the key roles. Together the animals and costumed actors walked the length of the parade carrying a sign that said, “Follow us to Bethlehem”. At the end of the parade the actors and animals gathered around the stable & manger. The annual lighting of the courthouse lights occurred, then local onlookers circulated to look at the lights and the living nativity scene. The scene and animals were a big hit with children adn adutls alike.