The Herald Banner, Greenville, TX

Features

January 16, 2014

Brothers and sisters in Christ

GREENVILLE — On Dec. 29, 2013, members of Authentic Life Fellowship gathered at their church. They had been told by their Pastor Jimmy Vaughn that the entire congregation was going to a Sunday morning service at another church, but they didn’t know where. They packed into cars and headed north.

At Salem-Kinser United Methodist Church, Sunday morning regulars were gathering for their service. What they didn’t know is that their pastor, Rev. Bill Shaddox, had been in talks with Vaughn to host the service.

How did the service with two denominations work?

“They loved it,” Shaddox said of his congregation. “It was wonderful. I haven’t heard anything negative about it.”

He said that he didn’t have to alter his sermon, although he did take some time to explain some Methodist traditions to Authentic Life members.

“Historically, the Methodist Church has been open to other people, as long as we share the same core beliefs,” he said.

The idea was born out of a conversation between members of the Authentic Life leadership team, and it quickly took root.

“We asked, ‘Why don’t we go to another church and let them know that we love them and we care about them and we’re on their side?’” Associate Pastor Chris Otto said.

Authentic Life’s intention was to encourage Salem-Kinser, as well as learn how other churches work.

“For us going there, it was just the experience of something different,” Vaughn said. “It’s a fatal flaw of any church to think, ‘This is the way to do church.’ This is the way we do church. It’s the way we’re comfortable and we enjoy it, but it’s not the only way. We went across denominational lines intentionally. There are differences, but I think there’s more in common than are different, and those differences wouldn’t keep us from fellowshipping.”

ALF specifically picked the Sunday after Christmas, a day that historically features low attendance numbers, as a way to both encourage their members and the members of Salem-Kinser. The concept was a new one for Greenville, according to Vaughn. In total, approximately 84 members of Authentic Life visited the Methodist church.

“I’m constantly amazed at this group’s willingness,” Vaughn said of his congregation. “We also had sound logic to it. It wasn’t just ‘Hey, let’s throw this against the wall.’ The fact that leadership had the courage to try it, and the attendance, speaks volumes.”

According to Vaughn, a similar event is already on the ALF calendar for 2014.

Shaddox said he hoped the idea would help foster unity in Greenville churches.

“I think sometimes we misunderstand each other,” he said. “It helps us get rid of preconceptions, and I hope it would help us move closer to working together in ministry and accomplishing our goals together instead of competing. Each church is different, each church is going to be able to reach out in a different way.”

Salem-Kinser was created when two churches merged in 1947. Pastor Shaddox has been at the congregation for 29 years, and said the church emphasizes missional efforts and community involvement in North Greenville.

“We are the only church north of Greenville that has a family life center,” he said. “And we make use of that for the community. Since I’ve been here, we’ve developed a more specialized ministry that focuses on the north side of Greenville.”

The inside of the church features stained glass that depicts the redemption story through both the Old and New Testament, using the cross as the focal point of the design.

 

1
Text Only
Features
  • Beekeepers.jpg Using combs for their curly hair

    Two little 7-year-old Hunt County twins are the sweetest girls around, and they have the honey to prove it.

    July 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • Children’s Hope coming to county

    Emma Casselton worked for the state of Texas as a foster adoption specialist for 16 years, facilitating more than 1,000 adoptions of local children.

    July 11, 2014

  • IMG_0178.jpg Pastor reflects on 30 years serving Commerce church

    A congregation tends to reflect the views of its pastor.

    July 7, 2014 1 Photo

  • Father's_Day_1.jpg A short history of Father's Day

    There are more than 70 million fathers in the United States today. 

    June 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • 7 Sunday Follies_Brunch_story.jpg Establishing the heart of Hunt County

    Every two years, the Greenville Follies holds a huge stage production to help raise funds for a local community nonprofit.

    June 10, 2014 1 Photo

  • Preston_Tarrant.jpg Parents hope Greenville can help give Preston a lift

    Before the parents of 11-year-old Preston Tarrant received the news that their son had a form of muscular dystrophy, they weren’t even aware that any such disease existed.

    May 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • CM_Angela_Franklin_2-1.jpg Making a career out of volunteerism

    Angela Franklin is a wife, a mother and a grandmother, but she could also be considered a cheerleader for volunteerism in the Greenville area.

    May 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Birthing_Center_sign.jpg At local birthing center, it is Mother’s Day every day

    The structure sits in the middle of a quiet residential neighborhood not far from downtown Greenville.
    If not for the sign in front advertising the home as “The Baby Place Birthing Center”, anyone passing by would likely have no idea that it is a facility where mothers come to deliver their children.

    May 11, 2014 1 Photo

  • Pastor_Ratliff_feature.1.jpg A promise fulfilled

    A little more than 30 years ago, as he was crossing the bridge over Lake Ray Hubbard, Senior Pastor Roger Ratliff of Vansickle Baptist Church received a calling from God, reminding him to fulfill a promise he had made years earlier to join the ministry.

    April 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • Scott_Stegall.jpg Army veteran opens medical facility in Cooper

    When Physician Assistant Scott Stegall first relocated to the Cooper Community Health Center from his practice in Commerce, he knew setting up a family medical clinic in the small, rural community with limited resources would present a challenge.

    April 25, 2014 1 Photo

Featured Ads
Promotions
Poll

Does Dallas head coach Jason Garrett need for the Cowboys to make the playoffs during the 2014 football season to keep his job?

Yes
No
Who knows with Jerry Jones as owner?
     View Results
Facebook
Must Read
Photos


See more photos and purchase prints here.

AP Video
Power to Be Restored After Wash. Wildfire Crashed Air Algerie Plane Found in Mali Israel Mulls Ceasefire Amid Gaza Offensive In Case of Fire, Oxygen Masks for Pets Mobile App Gives Tour of Battle of Atlanta Sites Anti-violence Advocate Killed, but Not Silenced. Dempsey: Putin May Light Fire and Lose Control Arizona Prison Chief: Execution Wasn't Botched Calif. Police Investigate Peacock Shooting Death Raw: Protesters, Soldiers Clash in West Bank Police: Doctor Who Shot Gunman 'Saved Lives' 'Modern Family' Star on Gay Athletes Coming Out MN Twins Debut Beer Vending Machine DA: Pa. Doctor Fired Back at Hospital Gunman Raw: Iowa Police Dash Cam Shows Wild Chase
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide