Are you looking for a place to belong? You’ll receive a warm welcome at Richmond United Methodist Church.

We are a church dedicated to Jesus Christ. We are committed to outreach and to minister in His name.

There is an array of family-oriented ministries providing opportunities for children, youth, and adults to grow in faith, to enjoy Christian friendship, and to serve Christ.

There is a place for you at Richmond United Methodist Church.

A Note From Pastor Tom

February 22 marks the beginning of Lent.  Some years ago, I was asked, “Why Lent? Why should Christians observe the season of Lent?”  The question came from a long-time Christian, who had never taken part in any Lenten observance;  most of her life she was a member of churches that did not “do Lent”. The question brings up the whole topic of the church calendar—the yearly cycle of seasons shared by Christians throughout the world.  The church calendar is not fixed in Scripture; rather, it developed in the common worship of the Church over the centuries.  So if it is not in the Bible, why use it?

First, it is helpful to remember that Lent is as much a part of the church calendar as Christmas and Easter. Even churches that do not use the church calendar celebrate Christmas and Easter.  At Christmas, we celebrate God’s incarnation as a babe in a manger, and at Easter, we celebrate the victory that comes through Jesus’ death and resurrection. The celebrations of Easter and Christmas convey the focal messages of the Christian faith.  They provide a crucial focus for all disciples of Jesus and put the whole church all on the same page.  So why add Lent into the mix?

The season of Lent is a season of preparation for Easter. During Lent, we remember when Jesus was fasting in the desert for forty days and was tempted by the devil. While Adam and Eve gave in to the serpent’s temptation, Jesus did not: even in self-denial, Jesus is victorious over temptation.  Late in Lent, especially on Good Friday, we remember Jesus’ suffering and death to save us. The day is so much brighter when you have been through the darkness. To see the light of Jesus Christ’s resurrection on Easter, you have to acknowledge the suffering that precedes it.

In Lent, we are attentive to the parts of Jesus’ life—his self-control, his patience, his faithfulness even in suffering—in hopes that we may learn from His example.   Many people give up something during Lent (red meat, alcohol, chocolate, etc). Others chose to add something (time in prayer, a new spiritual discipline, etc).  Yet with our cultural fixation on self-improvement, this can lead to misunderstanding: we can start (to think of a Lenten fast in terms of a diet!  Lent is not New Year’s Resolutions Round Two!  Lent is not about us!  Lent is about Jesus Christ.  In Lent, we might give up something, take on a new spiritual discipline, or change something to push ourselves spiritually. But the point is not self-improvement. The point is to feel a little discomfort, a little pain, and by that to be constantly reminded of our Savior Jesus Christ, who denied himself for our salvation.

So this Lent, whether you are going to fast from something or add something, use it to remember Jesus and reflect on what He did for us. May we each take the time to remember the suffering and death of Jesus, and prepare ourselves to celebrate his glorious resurrection!