This Sunday, April 3, we celebrate church (and when I say church, I’m talking about the people!). Oh sure, Mt. Carmel has stood in this place for well over 100 years (est. 1894!). So there’s much to celebrate in terms of longevity.
But what makes our history so rich are the stories of friends and families who have made all the difference in the place we call home. Sunday’s service of worship will shine a light on two, among many, who have made Mt. Carmel a place and a people to celebrate.
Carl Swann and his wife, Mildred, were married at Mt. Carmel. They raised their children, Janice and Ross, here. Their fingerprints are on most of what we have accomplished in worship, in the classroom, around the table, or in ministry. Mt. Carmel has been their home. How many couples do you know like that—together in one place for a lifetime?
We will recognize Carl as “deacon emeritus”—a deacon of merit. For years, Carl gave spiritual direction not only to our church’s life, but support to the ministry staff during an era of growth and change. I will never forget first meeting Carl in Shepherdsville, Ky. He was a member of the Pastor Search Committee that came looking for me—a young seminarian at age 26. From that day, Carl has been my friend.
Civic leaders from Robertson County and from the City of Cross Plains will add their voices echoing his service in our larger community.
In addition, we welcome Barrett and Noelle Owen. Barrett is our (Cindy and my) third son. He and Noelle were married March 5 in Atlanta, GA at the Smoke Rise Baptist Church where Noelle is on staff. Barrett pastors in Fayetteville, GA. They both are continuing their post-graduate education.
A reception follows the 10:15 a.m. service. They look forward to greeting church family. As parents, Cindy and I are so grateful for the church’s role in helping us raise all three of our sons.
Think about it! Mt. Carmel is a uniquely wonderful people and place—here’s a couple who began their life together and continued here all their days. And a young man who was born and nurtured here only to leave this place to do church ministry as God leads. How rich!
Sunday we give thanks to God as celebrate Mt. Carmel—our church, our community.
You gotta love it!