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The Methodists of Missouri have not started a church in the St. Louis inter-loop area for 100 years, though many have been closed. After one of the churches closed due to a lack of young families, Rev. Matt Miofsky asked to start a new congregation targeting young adults and families. The previous congregation that closed had a good life and peaked with an average attendance of 300 and then dwindled to nothing. Now three years after the opening of the new church, The Gathering UMC, the congregation is averaging over 500 on Sunday. One of the reasons for success has been converting an old traditional church building into a kid friendly space. In this MissionCast Kyle Kranes, Director of Family Ministries at The Gathering UMC, gives us a tour.
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The Calhoun United Methodist Church is located in Calhoun, Missouri, north of Clinton, with a population of 491. Drakeâ€™s Chapel United Methodist Church is an open country church just south of Calhoun.Â What they have in common is that they are both small churches and are both growing rapidly.Another thing they have in common is that they are outward focused.Â Both congregations have found ways to reach out beyond their walls and it has meant that more and more people are joining them.Besides giving through the Festival of Sharing in big ways, they support a seminary student in Mozambique, participate in Angel Food ministry, distribute food through the Samaritan Center, offer their facilities when the community needs them, they cleaned up an over gown dreary community cemetery and much more.Â Calhoun sends out cards to all members of their community upon special occasions.Another thing they have in common is great leadership in the form of their certified lay pastor, Margie Briggs.
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