Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
Thank you for reading the Friday Religion page. Each Friday, for a month at a time, a pastor from the Wilmington Area Ministerial Association (WAMA) writes an article for this column.
I’ll be writing for the month of September, and I wanted to take this first Friday to lift up the ministry of WAMA.
One of the primary functions of WAMA is to provide a sense of mutual support for the clergy of the Wilmington area through fellowship and prayer.
We usually share a meal together during our monthly meetings. We engage in theological reflection and discussion about current issues in the community and the world. We provide an opportunity for ecumenical worship through the Community Good Friday worship service and procession of the cross.
WAMA also desires to be a channel through which other community leaders can be in touch with the religious leadership of our community to discuss areas of concern in the Wilmington area.
A number of WAMA clergy serve as board members for helping agencies throughout Clinton County, including the Homeless Shelter, Community Action, Hope House, Elderly Services, Cape May, and Children & Family First.
The WAMA clergy have also been involved with helping to serve a meal at Your Father’s Kitchen, and they are involved in fundraisers such as Cardboard City and the Soup Luncheon for the Homeless Shelter.
The financial ministry in which WAMA is involved helps those within and outside our community in two ways.
For those who are traveling through Clinton County and for some reason need emergency overnight housing or fuel for their vehicle, there is a process through which WAMA can assist if one of the pastors is contacted.
Other financial resources that WAMA has received will sometimes go to local ministries that offer assistance in our community. For example, at our last meeting, we approved giving $250 each to St. Vincent DePaul, Sugartree Ministries, the Clinton County Homeless Shelter and Hope House.
Funding for WAMA mostly comes from congregations whose pastors participate in the WAMA meetings and ministries. Sometimes individuals also make donations to WAMA.
An offering is received during the Good Friday Community Worship service and that offering is designated for WAMA, and then in turn, is often distributed to local helping agencies.
WAMA also asks participating congregations to consider receiving a special offering around the Thanksgiving Holiday that would be designated for WAMA.
These are just some of the ways your pastors are sharing their leadership and ministry skills throughout the county. As the current chairperson of WAMA, I wish to thank all my colleagues in ministry for the partnership we share in proclaiming the gospel.
We may have different styles of leading worship, sharing our faith, and ways we minister to the needs around us, but the power of Jesus Christ to unite our proclamation is far greater than these small differences.
Coming together for our monthly meetings, engaging in discussion, caring for our community, and sharing a meal together give witness to the unity to which our Lord Jesus Christ calls us. We are one in Christ Jesus our Lord, and we work together to make a difference in the world.
If you are a clergyperson in the Wilmington area and you are not receiving WAMA emails but would like to, please contact me at: Faith Lutheran Church, 421 E. Vine St., Wilmington, OH 45177; 937-382-2460; firstname.lastname@example.org .
If you would like to donate to WAMA, make checks payable to “WAMA” and send to Dave Hinman c/o Dove Church, 1499 Rombach Ave, Wilmington OH 45177.
Rev. June M. Fryman is Chairperson of the Wilmington Area Ministerial Association and Pastor of Faith Lutheran Church in Wilmington.