Change is good. Or at least that’s what the new pastor is hoping for as he brings his own style to the Faith United Methodist Church congregation.
Michael Slininger, 26, came to Faith UMC July 1 to start his first senior pastor position after his four year experience as a youth pastor .
“It’s going fantastic,” Slininger says. “The community and the congregation have been very welcoming. We’re just very excited about the new things that are going on. We’re just trying to get some new energy (in the church.)”
Slininger jumped into bringing his vision for the church as soon as he arrived.
“A couple things that have been ‘stand-by,’ we’re just kind of revamping them,” Slininger explains.
One of the first changes made was the Sunday school program. Slininger says the program will now follow a classroom model as opposed to the rotational model that it was before. Sunday school begins at 9 a.m. every Sunday.
“(The classroom model) splits (the children) back into the way they used to do things, which was very classroom oriented with building relationships and having age-oriented and a specific learning experience,” Slininger says.
Another change that Slininger put in place was the time of Sunday worship. Instead of having the time switch from 10 a.m. during the summer to 10:30 a.m. during the school year, he decided it was best to avoid any confusion and keep a year-round 10 a.m. service time schedule.
The God’s Kids program will also endure a time change of Wednesday 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. instead of 3:30 – 5:30 p.m.
“During that same time, we will be starting a youth group, which they have not had in a while. It’s going to be called Youth Fellowship, and it’s for middle school and high school,” he says.
All the kids will share a light meal together before splitting into their individual age group activities, says Slininger.
Slininger also plans to begin new Bible study courses to offer members a choice of three different times within the week.
“We want to be about the community,” he says. “The identity of this church, even before I got here, was rich in the roots; they care about the people and the area here in Webster City. We don’t want to hinder that. I don’t want to change that at all, just encourage it.”
Slininger expressed his one main goal for the church is to make it available as much as possible for people to use.
“I want things going on here,” he says. “I want this to be a place for people to be able to come here and feel welcomed and loved. So that’s kind of been my focus; creating opportunities for this place to be open; that’s what I’m all about.”
To contact Faith UMC for more information please call 515-832-4787.
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