District responds for Redemption Church
A church without air conditioning pleaded for help as worshippers baked under Oklahoma’s record-setting summer heat, and United Methodists responded.
Money gifts provided for a new air conditioning unit and more at Lawton’s Aldersgate Redemption UMC, which offers programming as part of Criminal Justice & Mercy Ministries (CJAMM) of the Oklahoma Conference.
On Sept. 10, more than 40 people from across the Lawton District came together for a mission workday at the church. The event followed an emergency request from Rick Forthman, the pastor, to Patrick McPherson, who chairs the Lawton District Kingdombuilders and pastors the Snyder/Indiahoma churches.
"Through the generosity and faithfulness of United Methodists across the district, we were able to raise over $2,200," Rev. McPherson said, "enough to cover the cost of the air conditioning and provide seed money for us to do some much-needed painting to the church."
The workers included 10 inmates from correctional facilities in the Lawton area.
The church exterior was completely repainted, including the large cross on the front of the building, and repairs were made.
St. Paul UMC in Lawton started off the Saturday morning by serving all the workers a good breakfast, hosted by that church’s United Methodist Men. Sterling UMC provided a great lunch for everyone.
During the Redemption Church worship service the next day, Rev. Forthman praised the workers.
He was thrilled with the progress made and said the church was very blessed to have so many come together on a Saturday to reach out in ministry.