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As a family of faith, we celebrate together the many ways that we are blessed and seek to bless others.

The Tree Team Keeps Working!

Cullen Whitley led a disaster response group on Saturday, August 3, to Morehead City and to Burgaw. This hopefully wraps up the most urgent tree work needed within our Conference until the next hurricane blows through. We praise God for this team's safety through their work and celebrate their commitment and loving service in communities across eastern North Carolina.

Bahamas Mission Trip

We give thanks for the 30 youth, young adults, and adults from Highland who served with Bahamas Methodist Habitat in North Eleuthera, Bahamas, on July 14 - 20. Folks gathered during the Sunday School hour on Sunday, August 4, to hear their stories and learn about their trip. Here is the video of their trip that they shared.

Unearthing History in the Holy Land

Highland member Jim Johnson has participated in seasons 3 and 4 of the El Araj Excavation Project, an archaeological dig site on the northern end of the Sea of Galilee. A large portion of the excavation work has identified Roman objects from the New Testament period. The pictures here show Jim as part of the team clearing a mosaic floor thought to be part of a 8th-century Christian church. We're grateful for all the scholars and scientists whose work helps us better understand the lives and circumstances of the early church.

Words of Thanks

A heartfelt thanks to my Highland family for all the prayers, calls, visits, flowers, and food. It has meant so much to me. Much love, Mary McLeod

Dear Friends in Christ, I would like to thank Candi and members for their many expressions of kindness during the time of my sister's hospital stay and her death!  I could not ask for a more loving church family!  You are all a very special part of my life. ~ Ann Chapman

Highland Service Project

HSP celebrated its 35th year this year and had another wonderful week of service and fun for youth and adults. The team led worship at 11 AM on June 30, featuring testimonies from participants and music led by the HSP house band. Enjoy this recap video of their week!

Miss the HSP Sunday service? You can stream a recording of it here.

Vacation Bible School 2019

We're on our way to Mars and Beyond! 

Glory to God who is able to do far beyond all that we could ask or imagine by his power at work within us. - Ephesians 3:20

North Carolina Annual Conference

June 12 - 15 in Greenville, NC

Habitat Dedication

We celebrated with the Elengi family on Sunday, June 9, at the dedication of this year's Habitat for Humanity house. We built the house in partnership with a coalition of Episcopal churches and the dedication was presided over by our Pastor Alan and the Episcopal bishop of our area.

Congratulations Graduates!

Highland celebrates with all our high school and college graduates:

Colin Bross - graduating from Raleigh Charter; plans to attend Wake Tech
Lawson Cope - graduating from Broughton; plans to attend UNC Wilmington
Collin Heiler - graduating from Sanderson; plans to attend UNC Charlotte
Grace Keough - graduating from Leesville; plans to attend ECU
Connor LaRocca - graduating from Millbrook; plans to attend NC State
Heather Mangrum - graduating from Broughton; plans to attend ECU
Jack Martin - graduating from Leesville; plans to attend UNC Charlotte
Robert Schurtman - graduating from Leesville; plans to attend Wake Tech
Nate Stocum - graduating from Sanderson; plans to attend Western Carolina
Sarah Wallace - graduating from Broughton; plans to attend Meredith
Abigail Bugger - BA in Religion, Ethics and Philosophy & BA in Liberal Studies, Greensboro College
Maddie Driggers - BS in English, UNCW (last December)
Mackenzie Mims - BS in Business Administration, NC State
Leah Moore - BA in Media and Journalism & BA in Music Performance, UNC Chapel Hill
Ashten Rary - Associates Degree in Nursing, Pitt Community College
Whitney Richardson - PhD in Science Education,NC State
Sydney Shaffer - BS in Fashion and Textile Management, NC State

Congratulations Scholarship Recipients!

Congratulations to Collin Heiler, 2019 recipient of the Betty M. Gardner Memorial Scholarship. Congratulations also to Junko Takahashi, who received a scholarship renewal for the coming year. Each student received $1100.

Congratulations to London & Whitney (Richardson) White!

May God bless you as you begin this next chapter of life together.

Disaster Response Continues

We give thanks for the continued commitment of Cullen Whitley and our Disaster Response Team. They did emergency work in Hillsborough after a recent tornado and continue to be called upon in dire situations. Pastor Alan led a blessing of their trailer and tools, commissioning them to continue their service throughout Eastern North Carolina.

Holy Week @ Highland

We give thanks for all who helped to make our Holy Week services so meaningful and Spirit-filled. Glory to God and to Christ of the cross and the empty tomb!


We celebrated the story of Jesus' entry into Jerusalem during Holy Week with waving palms and singing children! We then enjoyed a brunch, raising funds for our youth mission trip, and made care baskets for Highland members who can't be with us on Sundays. It was a great day of worship and fellowship!

Highland Community Victory Garden Recognized at Raleigh Environmental Awards

Highland is proud of the work done in our Garden -- and not just the vegetables! We received two awards on April 4 at the Raleigh Environmental Awards, one in Urban Agriculture and also the biggest award, the Raleigh Environmental Stewardship Award, which recognizes an individual or organization which has shown environmental leadership and recognizes the relationship and continuity of the environment, economics, and equity or social justice aspects of human society. Congratulations to Cullen Whitley and all of our Community Gardeners!

Habitat Work Almost Finished!

Highland's staff did a work day at our Habitat house on April 4. The house is rapidly nearing completion, and the staff enjoyed a day of touch up paint and finishing touches, interior and exterior.

Easter Greetings from Circle 1!

Circle 1 made over 40 Easter cards for our members of the Highland family who can't get out to church on Sundays. They were also able to send cards to Highland members in the hospital. Circle 1 is a women’s circle that is smaller in number but mighty in heart.  They like to eat, laugh, and help others. They have lots of fun and welcome other women to join us. Contact Carol Thomas for more information.

UMYF Reunion

Thank you to Diane Racey, Mary Kathryn Brewer, and all those who helped to gather folks for a UMYF reunion on Sunday, March 24.

Monday Night Bible Study Recognized

Our Monday Night Bible Study group uses curriculum produced by Disciplers Bible Study, and Highland was recently featured in Disciplers' newsletter. We give thanks to Connie Williams, Rev. Bruce Taylor, and Rev. Dr. Alan Swartz who have all helped to shepherd this study over the past seven years.

HCC Celebration

Highland Children's Center families and staff joined us for dinner last Wednesday night to celebrate the good work they do in welcoming dozens of children every day and to celebrate the renewal of their 5-star certification. We began the evening with a performance from our combined children's choirs, which include a growing number of HCC kids.

Ash Wednesday

We began the season of Lent with a powerful time of worship together, featuring our HUMRingers and the Highland Choir. We give thanks for our musicians and the ways we can invite our community to join us for times of worship.

Author Kate Turner Pope

Highland was thrilled to welcome back Kate (Turner) Pope, children's author and non-profit founder who grew up at Highland. She was able to join us after dinner on Wednesday, February 20. She shared with children and adults her book The Giving Crusade, a book written to inspire children to help make changes in their communities and the world. We are grateful to the Library Committee for organizing this fun and educational event!

Love Is Something If You Give It Away

We're grateful to our children's choirs for their leadership in worship on February 17 and the special messages of love they shared with the congregation as part of their song.

Building Has Begun!

Our Habitat for Humanity house build began on Saturday, February 9, with framing in the warehouse and getting the walls up on our house. There's more workdays and plenty of ways to help: click here for more information.

Youth Winter Retreat

15 kids and 5 adults spent the weekend at Lake Junaluska, visited the Western NC Nature Center, and skied at Catalootchee in the Great Smoky Mountains. The weekend's theme came from Psalm 118:6, "Be Fearless."

Showing Love

UMW Circle 7 enjoyed making Valentine's cards for homebound Highland members.

Small Groups: Doing Life Together

Highland's small groups eat together, laugh together, and grow together.  Here's a shot of one of our small groups running the Krispy Kreme Challenge together! We celebrate all the ways that we are finding to share life together.

Cub Scout Pack 357's Pinewood Derby

Highland's scout ministry continues to thrive, as seen at our cub scout pack's Pinewood Derby on Friday, January 25. Congratulations to all who won their events!

Engaging in Service Together

After dinner, everyone teamed together to pack 60 hygiene kits for Church World Services, the same agency that sponsors the CROP Walk. These hygiene kits will be sent wherever in the world they're needed by people recovering from natural disasters.

Highland's Bach Festival

Many thanks to Jo Anne Swartz and the numerous Highland musicians who made the Bach Festival on Sunday, January 20, such a success!

UMW Recognizes Debbie Carroll

UMW co-presidents Jane Gray and Diane Racey presented Debbie Carroll with United Methodist Women's Special Mission Recognition pin at our 11:00 worship service on Sunday, January 20. UMW gives thanks for the ways that Debbie has served so faithfully at Highland and how her service has helped to further the growth and ministry of the UMW.

Our Cub Scouts are out in the Community!

Pack 357 has adopted a mile stretch of the House Creek greenway between Lake Boone Trail and Glen Eden Drive. Our second cleanup event took place on December 22nd. Boys & girls can join at anytime. We meet Tuesdays at 7 PM in Bradley Hall. Contact scoutingpack357@gmail for more information.

Epiphany at Highland

We enjoyed a chili dinner and ate "3 Kings" cake; our youth played Manhunt; children & families did crafts, played games, and enjoyed a special Epiphany story time with Pastor Amanda.

Elliott Fletcher's Baptism

Highland welcomed Elliott Smith Fletcher, son of Rev. Sarah & Andrew Fletcher, to Christ's church and to our church family through baptism on January 6, 2019.

Thank you, Highland

Highland Body of Christ,

God’s Church welcomes the lost, the least, the broken, the unloved, the forsaken, and outcasts. My season of ministry internship at Highland has given me a deeper love for the people of God and God’s Word.  Thank you for welcoming me to serve as a humble servant of Our Gracious Father. The power of prayer, study, discipleship, fellowship, and sacraments deepen our connection with our eternal Father, Jesus Christ Our Savior, and the Holy Spirit living within us.

May your lives proclaim Christ’s love to all you meet in each moment of your lives.  You can be Jesus to one who needs to be introduced to Him.  Love the Lord with all your heart and share the salvation promise that the Creator of All gives freely as a gift of grace.

May God’s abundant love and blessings be given and received.  May the peace and grace of Jesus Christ, Our Messiah be with you always.

In Jesus Christ’s Service,
Amanda Nunn

Celebrating the Season at Highland

Kuddos to Allison Moreau and Her Theater Colleagues

Highland's Allison Moreau, a junior at Sanderson High School, was interviewed by Raleigh's News and Observer in conjunction with her work on their theater group's award-winning performances of "26 Pebbles," a play portraying the aftermath of the Sandy Hook school shootings in the Newtown, Conn., community.  Click here to read the article.

Words of Thanks

Dear Mr. Whitley,

I have experienced many days of trouble after the wind gusts of the most recent hurricane destroyed the tree which then demolished the home of my late mother. In great despair, not knowing how I would have this tree removed before being issued a citation, my only refuge was the Lord. God answered my prayers by sending "Angels," you and your teamto help me. Because of your genuine concern, prompt response, and outstanding efforts, I am no longer facing this problem. For that, I thank you from the bottom of my heart.

Please convey my sincere gratitude to the rest of your crew: Tom Wolcott, Hal Barnes, Mike Mizelle, and David Hood. Your outreach ministry is a true example of Christian love. May the Lord bless you and your families as you continue to do His work.

Yours in Christ, Martha E. Burford

'Tis the Season

Highland folks are decking the halls and celebrating together the season of hope, peace, joy and love.

Our Very First Steward-ship Regatta

The Regatta was a fun activity for young and old and a chance to think about how we give our very best to God. Many thanks to Amy Takahashi for organizing and inspiring our crew!

Welcome to Rev. Amanda Bunce

Highland is pleased to welcome Rev. Amanda Bunce as our new associate pastor beginning January 1. Amanda grew up in Selma and attended UNC Wilmington, where she studied music. Having sensed a calling to ministry since childhood, she went on to receive her M.Div. from Candler School of Theology at Emory University in Atlanta. She then returned to North Carolina and has spent the last four and a half years serving as the lead pastor at two rural congregations, first in Robeson County and more recently in La Grange. Amanda loves bringing creativity to worship services and any opportunity to gather around the table, whether for Holy Communion or simply at the dinner table with friends. She has a heart for social justice and a passion for helping people hear the gospel story in fresh and imaginative ways. She’s a singer, a lover of music and film, a crafter of many mediums, addicted to coffee, a bit of a foodie, occasionally irreverent, a little nerdy, and a catmom of two. We look forward to having her with us beginning in January!

Family Promise Celebration

Another Family Promise mission has just ended
Highland UMC can again be commended
This extraordinary effort is a way for us all
To allow us, by our labors, to answer the call

We were glad as always to welcome the families to our church
Each guest contributed meaning to our lives and our faith
This poem can’t single out all the folks who helped out
But they can be proud of their work, of that there’s no doubt

There were food preparers who brought meals for our guests 
They worked hard to meet nutritional interests
Van drivers delivered passengers to their destinations
Not an easy job, we’re glad for their patience

There were the Boy Scouts, all of them winners
They came every night, and did k.p. after dinners
When some of the guests were stymied by citizenship phases
We had volunteers who helped navigate through those mazes

The overnight hosts were the glue keeping everything right
Some did double duty, spending more than one night!
And children’s helpers found a dozen ways to amuse the kids,
(In truth, the helpers had as much fun as their playmates dids)

We helped a young man prepare to start his new school
A little prep, some help with his clothes, and he was suddenly cool
Did I mention the bonfire and marshmallow roast?
This is become a tradition, our guests enjoy it maybe the most

Please, when we host Family Promise in the spring
Give it your time, your labor, your love,  your anything
Can you help set up, take down, cook, clean, or just talk to a guest,
Drive the van, spend the night, you’ll be glad---just give it your best!

- Janine Wood, Family Promise coordinator

Pilgrimage 2018

A group of Highland youth and adults joined peers from around the NC Conference for a weekend of worship and fun in Fayetteville, NC, November 9 - 11. Highland's group also enjoyed an afternoon of activities at Camp Rockfish.

Trunk or Treat 2018

Highland hosted friends and neighbors for our annual Trunk or Treat. In spite of the construction, we had a huge turnout and a wonderful night!

Blessing of the Animals

Highland partnered with Unleashed Pet Store in the Lake Boone Shopping Center to host a Blessing of the Animals on Saturday, October 6. Highland children made homemade cat and dog treats that we shared with the many folks who brought their pets for a blessing. In addition to cats and dogs, we blessed a gecko, a python, and a guinea pig! What a wonderful way to reach out and get to know our neighbors!