Travis Park United Methodist Church
Wednesday, January 28, 2015
Unconditional Love and Justice in Action

News & Calendar

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8:45 am Liturgical Service 

Sanctuary Choir, pipe organ
Holy Communion every Sunday 

11:00 am Celebration Service

Celebration Band and Singers
February 1, 2015 
Mark 1:21-28
Silence! Come Out!
Rev. Monte Marshall



From the United Methodist News Service: Marcus Borg, leading liberal theologian and historical Jesus expert, dies at 72.

Marcus Borg Theologian Dead at 72(RNS) Marcus J. Borg, a prominent liberal theologian and Bible scholar who for a generation helped popularize the intense debates about the historical Jesus and the veracity and meaning of the New Testament, died on Wednesday (Jan. 21). He was 72 and had been suffering from a prolonged illness, friends said.
Borg emerged in the 1980s just as academics and theologians were bringing new energy to the so-called “quest for the historical Jesus,” the centuries-old effort to disentangle fact from myth in the Gospels.

Thrive Youth Center - Update

 Since June, our church has been diligently working with Thrive Youth Center and its founder Sandy Whitley to establish a safe place to help LGBT young adults get off the street and into fulfilling lives.  We had advocated with the city for a sleeping space in our building 3 nights a week as a beginning, but the city had required an elaborate rezoning process in order to do so.  After our having jumped through those hoops, God has intervened through Scott Ackerson and Mark Carmona at Haven for Hope, opening up the possibility of a separate unit for the youth on campus, with all of the social services of Haven.    Details and relationships between Thrive Youth Center and Haven for Hope, as well as an upcoming opening date, are being negotiated now, so we look forward to sharing those details when they are available.  We are grateful for the work of Joseph Tanasi, Jim Ewers, Joanna Foster, Pastor Monte, Pastor Dale and many others who have made this breakthrough possible.  Volunteer mentors and friends will be needed to assure the success of this important outreach. 


Children's Ministries

Sunday School, k-4, 10 am, Rm 315.   
Children’s Church will not meet on February 1 so they the children may participate in Holy Communion with their families. 
Joyful Noise! Choir at 5pm, Kids’ Club fun at 6pm.  


Entry Point Class

Sunday, February 8, 4-6 pm, Office Conference Room 

Entry Point is for anyone who is interested in joining or learning more about TPUMC and our ministries. During this pastor-led session, you will learn about who we are as a community of faith, some of our history and opportunities to get involved. Contact Taylor Brown  


2015 Budget Adopted

On Tuesday, January 13, the Church Council adopted a 2015 budget with income and expenses totaling approximately $904,893.  It was but a few short weeks ago that we were facing a significant deficit in this year’s projected budget.  In response to the deficit, TPUMC’s Foundation initially raised its pledge to the operating budget from $116,000 in 2014 to $226,000 in 2015, a special appeal was made to the congregation that resulted in over $11,000 in additional pledges, and one-time gifts and commitments were received totaling $35,500.
Even with this increased giving, the budget was still in deficit by $28,670.46.  To fill this gap, the Foundation stepped up again and raised its pledge by another $29,000 to $255,000.  Since 2009, TPUMC’s Foundation has given the church over $900,000 in pledge funding alone.
In an email to Foundation Board chair, Brock Curry, and Board members, Pastor Monte Marshall wrote:  “I thank God for the faithfulness and generosity of the Foundation Board in ‘filling the gap’ as the church seeks a new financial footing that will sustain us into the future.  My gratitude is deepened by the knowledge that the Foundation’s increased pledge will keep our church staff from suffering the negative consequences of closing the deficit by reducing salaries and/or eliminating positions.  As I have said before, in my estimation, the ultimate solution to our structural deficit in the church’s operating budget will be to grow our congregation so that the pool of those contributing their resources to the ministry of our church is expanding.  This effort will require ‘all hands on deck,’ including both the church staff and everyone else connected to TPUMC as we reach out, tell our story to new people, and invite them to follow Christ as we share together in the transforming work God is doing through this congregation.  I look forward to the day when the Foundation’s assets will once again be expanding rather than contracting as the church finds other means to secure its financial viability.  O God, hasten the day!” We are grateful for all the prayers, the gifts and the pledges that have helped us adopt a balanced budget for 2015.



A Message from Lana Potts

I am so pleased to rejoin the church staff this year in the new position of Director of Development and Congregational Giving.  I am honored that you have given me the opportunity to work with you to strengthen and develop the financial resources of our church and its ministries, including Corazon Ministries, Inc., Deborah's House and our Travis Park Foundation. I am also pleased to announce that Priya D'Souza joined the staff this past week as our new Administrative and Financial Assistant.  Priya brings to this position not only a background in finance and computer technology, but also a calm, gracious spirit.  As Priya assumes the duties of this job, we are fortunate that  Monica Moore, who has served the church in this position for the past four years, is generously spending time away from her new job to help us make this transition. Priya and I will be working to get your 2014 giving statements to you as soon as possible.  In the meantime, if you have any questions about your gifts or pledges, please don't hesitate to contact Priya in the church office (, 210.226.8341) or email me at All of us on staff know that the work of our church and its ministries can't be done without your gifts, and we will work hard to make sure that every dollar is used wisely. Blessings,Lana

Staff Changes

Farewell to Monica Moore
We bid farewell to Monica Moore.  Monica has been serving on our church staff in the position of Administrative Assistant since 2011.  We are grateful for her service and wish her God-speed in her new work. Thank you, Monica! 

Welcome, Priya!
TPUMC has a new Administrative and Financial Assistant, Priya D’Souza.  Priya is a native of Mumbai, India.  She comes to this position with a Master’s Degree in Commerce and Management from Mumbai University, and training in Computer Programming and Applications.  Her work experience includes serving as a free-lance technical writer, a functional analyst, and an administrative assistant.  She will be working 40 hours a week, 8:00am to 4:30 pm, Monday through Friday.  She began her employment on Tues, Jan 13.Priya has resided in the United States for 10 years.  She is married to Joseph, an employee of USAA.  They have two children:  an eight-year-old daughter, Neha, and a five-year-old son, Naythan.  Welcome, Priya!

Many Thanks to Altar Art Artists

Thanks to Altar Art artists Deana Kirby, Karen Robinette and Becky Vitola for regularly providing thoughtful and stimulating designs for the altar enhancing our worship.  Thanks, too, to Deana Kirby who will co-ordinate altar art for 2015.   In appreciation, Mona Kandeler

A Word of Thanks to Mona 

Mona Kandeler is stepping down from her job as coordinator of the Altar Art Team, though she will continue to serve on the team and create beautiful sacred spaces on the altar. She played big part in creating and sustaining this wonderful ministry several years ago and has shared many hours of her time and her gifts to  provide  visual expression for our worship services.  Thank you , Mona! 


A familiar face to fill a new position

I am pleased to announce that beginning January 1, 2015, Lana Potts, a long-time member of TPUMC, former staff person, and most recently, a regular substitute organist, will fill a new position on the church staff:  Director of Development and Congregational Giving.  Lana brings to this position a deep faith, a contagious passion for this church, a sharp intellect, training and experience as an attorney in estate law, background as the director of a non-profit organization, and a willingness to focus her energies on enhancing the stewardship of our congregation as well as securing funding for Corazon Ministries, Inc., Deborah’s House, and TPUMC’s Foundation.  Lana will be working with our congregation’s stewardship team, as well as with the respective governing boards of CMI, Deborah’s House and the Foundation, to design and implement development plans to provide a sound and sustainable financial base for each entity.     Lana will serve in this capacity as a volunteer during 2015 with the prospect of moving into a paid position in 2016.  Her initial work will be on a part-time basis as she finishes up her current teaching assignment at Sul Ross State University in Alpine, TX.  At the end of the summer, as Lana and her husband begin to spend most of their time each month living in San Antonio, she will transition into devoting full-time to the job and keeping office hours at the church.     For the past several months, a group of our church leaders has been working with fundraising professionals, Cliff and Shari Underwood, to create this position as an important step in addressing ongoing issues related to the financial support of our church and its ministries.  The Underwoods graciously donated their time to this effort.  When Lana learned of our need and our plans, she stepped forward and after much conversation and prayer, we now have a Director of Development and Congregational Giving. Thank you, God! 
Grace and peace,
Pastor Monte

 Men's Clothing Needed for Clothes Closet - Coats, sweaters, jackets

Cooler weather is here, so it’s time to collect winter clothes, jeans, pants, jackets, and blankets. Clean, washable clothes for men are always welcome. Please bring your donations to the church office.


New Video about Corazon Ministries, Inc.

Click here to see the new video, created by Randy Mahoney of the Southwest Texas Conference Office.

CMI Gift

Corazon Ministries, Inc. is very grateful for a $10,000 donation from Valero, which was received due to the efforts of Mike Smith, CMI Board member and Café Corazon Crew Chief. 

Special thanks to Mike!  


Holy Conversations Report Available

After two years of work, the Holy Conversations Coordinating Team has produced a final report outlining a strategic plan for TPUMC.  The report is available here.  Our Church Council has reviewed the report and is recommending its adoption by the annual Church Conference to be held on Tuesday, December 2 (see the newsletter for details).  All TPUMC members have a voice and a vote at the Church Conference.  The members of the Holy Conversation Coordinating Team have been:  Phil Watkins, chair; Rev. Monte Marshall, senior pastor; Paula Stallcup; Heather Mace-Meador; Alex Clark; Andria Dever; Denise Arevelo-Taylor; John Patterson; Paul Harper; Charles Whitehead; and Shawn Campbell.  

Clothes Closet in need of Men's Clothes

Cooler weather is around the corner, so it’s time to collect winter clothes, jeans, pants, jackets, and blankets. Clean, washable clothes for men are always welcome. Please bring your donations to the church office.






5:00-8:00     Nursery  for infant - K
5:00-6:00     Joyful Noise!   grades 1-5
5:00-6:00     Emmaus Singers  grades 6-12
5:00-6:00     Travis Park Ringers
6:00-6:30     Dinner Bring your own brown bag
6:30-8:00     Kids’ Club grades K-5
6:30-8:00     Travis Park Youth grades 6-12
6:30-8:00     Sanctuary Choir


Rev. Laura Merrill, District Superintendent of the McAllen (el Valle) District of the Southwest Texas (Río Texas) Conference of the United Methodist Church reflects on our responsibility in the refugee crisis on our Southern border.


Pride Parade 2014

Thanks to all who represented TPUMC at the Pride Parade in Austin last Saturday! Nearly 500 United Methodists marched to show love and acceptance at this fabulous annual event.






 Families or groups are needed to prepare and/or help serve Wednesday evening dinners at the weekly Prayer Picnic. Contact Pastor Dale at 210-279-5743 or



The first projects funded by the Caring for the Gift capital campaign have been completed!  TPUMC now has a new vent hood over the oven in the kitchen, upgraded duct work, and a renovated fire-suppression system that brings us into compliance with the current fire safety code.  The work has passed inspection thus bringing this project to a successful conclusion. Thanks to our Trustees, Building Superintendent Leonard Hartfield, and the contributors to ourCaring for the Gift campaign for bringing all the pieces together to complete this project.   Well done!In the meantime, a second capital campaign project has been completed: the repair and painting of the trim on the Stephenson Building’s windows. 

We are also waiting a to receive a schedule from the Wahl Organ Builders detailing the timing of the repair and maintenance  work they will provide in three phases on the sanctuary organ.   
We will keep you posted as work proceeds and will do our best to be diligent and faithful stewards for this body of Christ.




Travis Park United Methodist Church
230 East Travis Street, San Antonio, Texas 78205