St John UMC Great Witness Weekend

Great Witness Weekend Developing Into A Movement!

Date: May 21, 2011

Location: St. John UMC

Details:Article contributed by Pastor John Hunsberger

The Great Witness Weekend Model continues to be enjoyed in more and more conference churches! The Holy Spirit is using this model to revive clergy and lay members for discipleship, evangelism, and mission.

The last weekend in February saw ten from Ritzville Trinity go to First United Methodist in St. John to conduct the Great Witness Weekend. The event began on a Friday night and ran through the weekend ending with worship on Sunday morning. A crowd of forty enjoyed taking part in the Great Witness Weekend. Like the 'Lay Witness Model of the 1970's and 80's, this model includes passionate worship, time for people to talk about how they have come to know Christ in small groups, and meals. Jim Moore, helped St. John with special music. A special sing along type atmosphere was enjoyed Saturday.

Byron Fitch, lay leader from Ritzville Trinity was the key note speaker during the four presentations and preached during Sunday worship. He described what his life was like before and after coming to know Jesus Christ as Lord! Evident during the small group discussion times was that people were talking about Jesus Christ and not just superficial talk like the weather, or sports. People talked about the real nitty gritty joys and struggles of what it means to journey through life with Christ! Prayer was offered for healing in people?s lives and spirits!

What is amazing at these events is how The Holy Spirit can take people who have never met and in a very short time create new safe, deep relationships, so that people see themselves not just as people from this church or that church but as brothers and sisters in Christ. Relationships are begun and strengthened between UMC Churches and the Holy Spirit draws people to Christ!

Special thanks goes to the Ritzville Trinity team: Byron and Sandra Fitch, Gayle and Gaynel Gering, Steve and DeAnn Becker, Gregg and Sandy Wise, and Maureen Hunsberger who traveled to St. John. Special thanks also to Pastor Dave and Karen McCue who were very supportive with the St. John people of The Great Witness Weekend. Other Great Witness Weekend experiences are planned in Pacific Northwest Conference Churches this coming spring and summer!