By Anna Belle Lamar | 2022-08-26 | 2 min read

Shared ministry on Haywood Street has a long history.  In the Faith Classroom at FUMC, you can find a large Bible given by Grace Church at the turn of the 20th Century as a sign of our shared Christian witness.  Similarly, at Grace in our Fellowship Hall you can find a large Bible given in celebration of Grace's "new" sanctuary in 1957!  

Over the last few years we've collaborated on community worship services, creation care ministry, and food distribution events.  This year our collaboration is becoming even deeper as we enter into partnership in our youth ministry program, which we're calling "GraceFirst."  We anticipate sharing kids, resources, fellowship, space, and time together to learn from and guide our middle and high school youth as they grow in their faith and life experiences.  Concretely, this will look like having volunteers from both Grace and FUMC at the Sunday night youth program; collaborating on Wonderful Wednesday youth ministry and the famous Winter Retreat.  Undoubtedly, more opportunities for shared outreach will emerge, as well.

Leadership from both FUMC and Grace are supportive and excited about this new season of ministry as we proclaim the Good News of Jesus Christ to a broken and beautiful world.

- Joslyn Schaefer, Rector at Grace Church in the Mountains


We have seen amazing, holy moments spark from GraceFirst's shared youth programming already. 

We are committed to keep growing this structure together and further solidifying our GraceFirst covenant. 

We are eager to see how God works through youth in both congregations to be the hands and feet of Christ in our community!

- Anna Belle Lamar, Director of Youth Outreach at FUMC Waynesville

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