The Pastor's Buzz

Pastor Buzz Trexler's blog for God's people in The Meadow.

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Name: Buzz Trexler
Location: Knoxville, Tennessee, United States

Journalist for 29 years; married to Donna for 28 years; parent of David, 27, and Elizabeth, 24; pastor of Green Meadow United Methodist Church in Alcoa since 2002.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Remembering the Rev. Ray Robinson ...

We were at The Meadow taking part in a fairly extensive work day with other Meadow folk and volunteers with Family Promise of Blount County when Carol Green told me Ray Robinson was in critical condition at UT Hospital. I learned later that Ray had died.

I knew of the Rev. Ray Robinson long before I met him. He was held in high regard by longtime members of Middlebrook Pike UMC in Knoxville, which was my home church for more than 15 years. Ray served that church from 1965-69, the church's history records it as "a time when we needed a boost."

The history, some of which I still have on my hard drive, goes on to say this:

"It was as if we had 'bottomed out' into a low plateau of enthusiasm, interest and church growth. The Rev. Robinson got the church 're-organized and re-vitalized.'

"Fellowship dinners were started; a newsletter, the 'Messenger,' was published; the old Hammond organ was replaced with a new and larger one; landscape improvements were made; and our first pictorial directory was completed.

"Attendance and programs increased as a new feeling of spiritual alertness permeated the congregation. Plans for a new education building came into focus."

After Ray retired, his charge was at Maryville First UMC. He knew of my connection to Middlebrook as well as of my work at The (Maryville) Daily Times. He would occasionally take me to task about something he didn't care for in the newspaper -- never in a mean way, but in a challenging way.

I'm guessing that was the way he served at Middlebrook, as well as his other pastorates: Challenging disciples to move forward for the Kingdom.

Please pray for his wife Jane, daughters Anne and Joy and their families, as well as for the many friends and family members who are affected by his passing.

Grace and peace ...