Why is Travis Never at the Church?


I’ve been getting the question, “Where are you? Why are you never at the church?” quite a bit lately from youth and parents and random strangers. So, for anybody who’s interested, here’s a letter I sent out today to parents and youth and anybody else who cares to explain why you may not have seen me as much lately if you’ve been looking for me.

Dear Parents and Youth and Anybody Else Interested,

I want to send you all a short note to let you know that for the next twelve weeks, I will be working a different schedule at BUMC, with a slightly reduced number of hours. (I’ve been working this schedule for the past few weeks as well.) As many of you know, I am pursuing ordination as an Elder in the United Methodist Church. One of the main requirements for that is for me to complete a Master of Divinity degree from Vanderbilt Divinity school this year. If all goes according to plan, I will finish all my classes this semester and graduate in May!

At this point in my degree program, I have zero flexibility in the classes I can choose to take and zero choice in the days and times they’re offered. In order to complete all the necessary classes required for graduation, I am in class four days a week (Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday), with Thursday as my only weekday without class. Because of this course load, my weekly schedule will look something like this:

All day at BUMC.

6:45 – 7:45am – Manfest @ Dimple’s Deli (h.s. guys breakfast, open to all h.s. guys.)
9:00 – 10:00 – Class @ Vanderbilt.
10:30 – 6:00 – BUMC.

6:00 – 11:00am – BUMC.
11:00 – 4:00 – Class @ Vanderbilt.

9:00am – 4:00pm – Class @ Vanderbilt.
5:00 – 8:00 – BUMC Wednesday Night.

All day @ BUMC.

All day @ Vanderbilt.

We have what I think is the best youth staff at any church anywhere, and they, along with the rest of the church staff and leadership, have been really supportive of me as I tackle this difficult schedule. Please know that although my schedule is slightly more hectic than usual for the next several weeks, I am still committed to being the best youth minister I can be for BUMC. Please don’t ever hesitate to contact me or any of our youth staff if you need anything at all. Rosanne Schenck, who is our amazing Administrative Assistant, is almost always able to get in touch with me, even if I’m not at the church, so please feel free to contact Rosanne as well. The youth office number is 615-324-7251. Thanks as always for allowing me to be in ministry with your family!

Grace and Peace,


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