ITLOTC. June 27, 2014...


(In the Life of the Church)

June 15, 2014

(While Josh is away on sabbatical, Craig will be writing the newsletter.  Which means you should expect less Harry Potter and more Hank Williams.)


Late last spring UBC went through a massive transition in our leadership structure, and it wasn't easy.  The meetings that ushered in the change were emotionally draining and contentious. Just about everyone had a strong opinion about the direction we should go. Many of us believed that if "the other side" "won," then the church was doomed for a split, and if "our side" "won," then church utopia was upon us.  It was, frankly, pretty ugly.  (There's probably some principle of leadership that says I shouldn't be telling you these things. If so, I'm ignoring it and will repent later.)

In the midst of a particularly heated moment a voice came from the corner, "I think we need to pray."  The voice belonged to the youngest person in the room, Austin Tiffany.

It may surprise you to hear that interrupting a church leadership meeting with prayer is worthy of note.  Isn't this what we are supposed to be doing?  In a way, yes.  We do seek God's guidance in all the affairs of the church, but at UBC we believe that an invitation to God doesn't need to be  continuously extended and renewed in order for God to be with us and to lead us. However, there are times when we need to be reminded that we are not our best guides, God is.

In that moment, Austin provided the tap on the shoulder that we needed.  It was "leadership" in its truest, and best form. In my almost forty years among people who pray, there are only a handful of times when someone has led me to God in a way that was authentic, unforced, and necessary.  This moment is at the top of that list.

It is often said that the transitory nature of UBC is one of our weaknesses.  For the most part, I agree.  When about half your church is completely turning over every four years or so, it presents many challenges. But it also presents many gifts as well. College Freshmen stream in here every fall looking for something.  Some of them find it immediately and determine that we are the place for them, but most of them go looking elsewhere.  Some return, some don't.  Of those that end up calling UBC home, many leave their mark on us in memorable and vital ways. We aren't a church that has thousands of people in worship every Sunday.  (I, for one, am thankful for this.) But we are a church that has been impacted by thousands of students who have come, placed their stamp on us, and left.

And out of those, a small handful do more than impact us. They form us, leading us to places we couldn't have gone otherwise. If there were a UBC Mt. Rushmore, they would be on it. And if I have a vote for who goes up there, Austin would get it. (This is also probably something I shouldn't be saying, adding to the things I will need to repent from later.)

This is Austin's last week as a member of Leadership Team.  As he rotates off he is also in his last few weeks at UBC.  In the fall he will be studying interfaith dialogue at the University of Cambridge. If you see him around, please make a point to thank him for his contribution to the life of our church.  He will be missed greatly.

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Garage Sale

As you may have heard, we have had a couple of break-ins at our garage sale storage building.  Because of this we are working hard to get all the smaller items out of that building and into Sunday School rooms in the main church building.  We will be having a special time of sorting THIS Sunday at 1:00pm.  Go grab lunch after church, bring it back and we'll hang out in the backside.

If you are able to help with this at other times and in other ways, please email


Holiday Break

We typically take the days around Independence Day off from our weekly events.  There will be no Enneagram Conversation on Wednesday the 2nd, and no Summer Sunday School on the 6th.


Waco Dive

The Waco Dive for Wednesday July 2nd will be at Baris.  Join us there at noon!


Leadership Team

If you have a concern or an idea for UBC that you’d like to share with someone that is not on staff, feel free to contact one of our leadership team members.

Chair: Jana Parker

Kristin Dodson

Kaley Eggers

David Wilhite

Austin Tiffany

Byron Roldan

Teri Walter


UBC Finance Team

Do you have a question about UBC’s financial affairs? Please feel free to contact any of your finance team members.

Tom Haines:

Paul Taft:

Josh McCormick:

Chris Kim:

Tom McCarty:



If you have concerns about staff and would like contact our human resources team, please feel free to email any of the following members.

Lacy McNamee:

Callie Schrank:

Jeff Walter:

Michael Heins: