World Communion Sunday: Engage in Ministry...
by Bishop Joel N. Martinez
"I've always had a very strong love for the local church," asserts Bishop Joel N. Martinez, San Antonio Area and President of GBGM Board of Directors. "I feel a deep sense of gratitude toward the church in helping me grow as a Christian. I want to help local churches to grow in spirit and in mission and to be that kind of nurturing community."
A former Crusade Scholar, Bishop Martinez experienced the call to ministry as a teen-ager. After graduating from the University of Texas--El Paso, he entered Perkins School of Theology, Southern Methodist University, Dallas. "My ministry dream would not have been realized without the church's scholarships," he said.
During the past four decades, Bishop Martinez has played many roles in the local church, the district, the community and the general church.
A former World Methodist Council member and World Council of Churches delegate, Bishop Martinez counts ecumenical involvement as one of the richest rewards of his ministry. He advises aspiring clergy, "always to serve in an ecumenical spirit, open to the tradition and wisdom of your sisters and brothers in the faith."
In his second letter to the church at Corinth, the apostle Paul wrote, "It is by God's mercy that we are engaged in this ministry,..."
"The Crusade Scholars program made possible my seminary education," Bishop Martinez says. "This program is vital to our church's future." He appreciates the generosity of United Methodists through the World Communion Sunday offering that provides:
Our World Communion Sunday gifts nurture members of our family in faith to engage in life-changing ministries. Please give generously on World Communion Sunday, the first Sunday in October. Your gift makes a world of difference!
Text is used with permission by www.UMCGiving.org.
Date posted: Sep 30, 2004