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Gathering, Growing, and Going Through Faith at Senoia United Methodist Church

By Pamela Sosnowski

Reverend Erik A. Mays wants people to know that his parish, Senoia United Methodist Church (Senoia UMC), is a warm, welcoming place of worship. "We are a very embracing and welcoming congregation," he says. "Our church is full of people of many different backgrounds and ways of life. After a first visit to our church a newcomer will no longer be a newcomer; they will be family."

Senoia UMC is one of nearly 35,000 Methodist churches worldwide and is "connectional" to its Christian denomination through a deep bond of ministry. According to Mays, there's power in these numbers and having a strong bond with sister churches.

"Our connection opens the door for our denomination to support various forms of ministry such as education, health care, foster programs, disasters relief programs, and more," he explains. "Our arms extend far into our communities and around the world enabling us to make a deep impact for Christ."

The church celebrates with two worship services every Sunday; one at 8:45 AM and a second at 11 AM that features a chancel choir. While the dress code for these celebrations is casual ("wear what you wish" states the website) the services themselves are passionate affairs, featuring carefully selected music and biblical sermons. New visitors are greeted warmly by the ushers and even receive a welcome gift.

As a Christian church, Senoia UMC's congregation believe in one God and making a difference in the world through the teachings and love of Jesus Christ. The parish also asks questions and tries to make sense of difficult questions, but does so with an emphasis on grace.

"We believe that grace is God's presence working in us to enlighten us, convict us, forgive us, liberate us, assure us, empower us, strengthen us, comforting us, and helping us to become the people or persons God intended for us to be," explains Mays. "We believe that grace is grounded in the love and mercy of God the Father, manifested in the life, death, and resurrection of God the Son, and experienced through the work of God the Holy Spirit."

Outreach and missionary programs are a big part of congregational life at Senoia UMC. The Outreach Team is dedicated to welcoming new members into the church as well as serving the local community and spreading the word of Jesus Christ. The Missions Team takes the church's message further by getting involved with international causes.

"Our mission's ministry has opened new doors to a new partnership with a Christian day school and orphanage just outside of Guatemala City, Guatemala that we send a team to each year called 'La Senda,'" says Mays. "Back home we are heavily involved in local outreach ministries as well as Stop Hunger Now."

Earlier this year Senoia UMC unveiled its "Road Map for the Future", which outlines its plans to strengthen and grow its ministry. "Part of this vision includes adding more staff and space for future ministry," says Mays. "This is a great time to be part of this church as we seek to be the hands and feet of Christ here, there, and everywhere we go."

For further information feel free to visit their website at www.senoiaumc.org.

229 Bridge Street, Senoia GA 30276
770 599 3245
office@senoiaumc.org

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