Philadelphia First UM members begin journey toward more healthy lifestyles


Special to the Advocate

Losing weight God’s way is the theme of a new program that made its debut at First United Methodist Church in Philadelphia 

“Your Journey,” a six- week, biblically based weight management program, kicked off on Feb. 6 with weekly 90-minute meetings. For the 18 participants, “Your Journey” is just the beginning of their journey to a lifetime of wellness and weight management. This program is an exploration of the biblical truths for healthy living. It combines basic nutrition principles with God’s word and a 40-day devotion-journal to help promote spiritual growth while slimming the waistline. 

Your Journey teaches the participant how to tap into their biggest resource, God, to help with everyday problems, such as weight management. Through him, they are able to do what fad diets promise, but most often fail to do: lose weight and keep it off. 

It’s not magic, it’s not a pill, it’s not a supplement or a strenuous diet regimen that makes this program a success. It is a program which promotes spiritual growth and gradual, lasting changes in lifestyle to lead to weight management for a lifetime.   

Losing weight is hard; keeping it off is even harder, especially when one tries to do it alone. However, Philippians 4:13 promises, “I can do everything through Him who gives me strength.” Nothing is impossible with God. This program empowers participants to allow God to take an active role in every area of their lives, including diet. 

Being written and taught by a registered dietitian helps add to the effectiveness of “Your Journey.” The average weight loss has been five to 10 pounds per participant during the first five weeks of the program.  

“This is right on target with the program’s goal for participants to lose one to two pounds per week,” says Penny Dickerson, program author.   

Your Journey offers six weeks of classes taught by a registered dietitian, along with the journal and a binder with weekly worksheets, handouts and healthy recipes. The cost is $40 per person or $70 per couple.   

As with any program, participants will get as much from it as they put into it. Dickerson said she hopes to get the opportunity to offer this program at other churches in her community in the future.   

For more information, contact Dickerson at 601-656-9870 or 601-416-9870.