FUMC Bristol Newsletter November 30 – December 6, 2017

This is what the Lord God says.
I will seek out the lost,
bring back the strays,
bind up the wounded,
and strengthen the weak.
                                                                                ~from Ezekiel 34
Sunday, December 3
 First Sunday of Advent
The Second Coming of Jesus Christ by Ron Dicianni
Mark 13:24-37

No one has heard,
no ear has perceived,
no eye has seen…
Rev. Brandon Berg 

Last Sunday Was Christ the King Sunday
The Reign of Christ:
What it Means to Say, ‘Christ Is Lord’

Matthew 25: 31-46

by Rev. Brandon Berg

I sing the almighty power of God,
that made the mountains rise,
that spread the flowing seas abroad,
and built the lofty skies,
I sing the wisdom that ordained
the sun to rule the day;
the moon shines full at God’s command,
and all the stars obey.
There’ s not a plant or flower below,
but makes thy glories known,
and clouds arise, and tempests blow,
by order from thy throne;
while all that borrows life from thee
is ever in thy care;
and everywhere that we can be,
thou, God, art present there.
                                      ~ Isaac Watts, 1715


Then these righteous ones will say,

“Lord, when did we ever see you hungry and feed you?

Or thirsty and give you something to drink?

Or a stranger and show you hospitality?

Or naked and give you clothing?

When did we ever see you sick or in prison and visit you?”

And the King will say, ‘I tell you the truth, when you did it to one of the least of these

my brothers and sisters, you were doing it to me.”   

                                                                                                                               ~Matthew 25: 37-40 NLT

 Crown him the Lord of love;
behold his hands and side,
those wounds, yet visible above, in beauty glorified.
All hail, Redeemer, hail!
For thou hast died for  me;
thy praise and glory
shall not fail
throughout eternity.
                            ~Matthew Bridges, 1851
Every day, Lord, we encounter you, 
hungry, thirsty, ostracized, underdressed, sick, imprisoned, and we abandon you.
Lord, Have mercy. Christ, have mercy. Lord, have mercy.

Today, as another year ends and we turn again to prepare for your arrival,

open our eyes to see you in every forgotten person we would otherwise pass by.

These last to us are first to you; in them, we see you.

Friends, you are sent from here by a God who is always on the side of the most vulnerable.

Go and use the authority you are given and shepherd them into healing and wholeness,

so that by your life, you proclaim Christ as Lord today.

Our deep love and
Christian Sympathy
are extended to
Gina Carnahan and
Sarah Fitzellen
in the loss of their father,
David Woody.
This week’s Feed the Hungry offering is for
Bristol Faith in Action. BFIA is a cooperative outreach ministry
of the churches of Bristol and the local community, formed to serve
any persons whose circumstances leave them with significant physical,
social, emotional, or spiritual needs.

From the Pastor’s Pen . . .
At some point in moving furniture and boxes into our house this Summer, I aggravated my piriformis, which is a small muscle through which runs the sciatic nerve.
I didn’t think much of it. Most injuries I’ve sustained during exercise I’ve been able to walk off over the course of a few days, at most.
Not this one, though.
I kept running, almost every day. I assumed the pain would go away eventually.
One morning, I was running past the YMCA (a mile and a half from home) and the muscle suddenly screamed at me.
That was a little over a month ago. I tried icing, resting, and stretching; but after a few very painful runs, I decided the right answer was to take some time off.
So I did. I took a month from mid-October to mid-November to rest, stretch, and allow that little muscle to heal.
And I feel much better now.
Sometimes all I need is to pause and rest.
We’re moving into a time of the liturgical year that is intentionally set aside as a time to pause, to rest, to reflect. I know – BOY, do I know! – that the season between Halloween and the New Year is a whirlwind of activity and lights and extraordinary expenditures, but it doesn’t necessarily have to be.
I want to invite you to spend this Advent in much the same way that we ought to spend Lent, the time that prepares us for Easter.


Maybe set aside an intentional time each day to focus on caring for those spiritual muscles that you’ve abused and injured. Carve out some time for silence. Carve out some time for singing a prayer. Carve out some time for naming persons. Carve out some time for thankfulness.

There are lots of ways to heal the spirit. If you need some guidance, I might be able to help.
But remember to pause. Let Advent be a time of healing. Let it be a time of rest.
Because God knows we need a little healing and rest.
In Children’s Church Last Sunday . . .
 The lesson this week was about the dedication of Solomon’s temple. The Spirit of God filled the temple in a cloud. It covered the assembled crowd. Thank you, Penny, for your beautiful flannel graph pictures to fuel our understanding and imagination!
Biblical Exploration
Every Sunday
9:30 a.m. – 10:30 a.m.
Wednesday, December 6
6:30 p.m.
Potluck Dinner
You can either prepare or buy your favorite food. Bring enough to share with at least four people.
We’ll have fun games to round out the night.
January 19-20-21
Dear Church Family,
Thank you so much for your offerings to local school missions. Recently, this money was used to provide Thanksgiving meals for three Anderson School families. Your generosity has truly made a difference.
                                              Kathy Mack
Please turn in your Estimate of Giving forms by this Sunday, December 3. To date we have received several but are far from a workable budget. Your Finance Committee will do its best to plan with the pledges you have given.  Please remember, these are not a contract but an estimate. More forms will be available at Sunday’s services for you to use.
The Finance Committee
Bristol United Methodist Churches
Advent Luncheon Series
Every Wednesday
All are Welcome
Gathering: 11:50 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
Worship: 12:00 p.m.-12:30 p.m.
Lunch: 12:30 p.m.-1:00 p.m.
Wednesday, December 6
Host Church: First Bristol UMC, 322 Vance Drive
Preaching: Rev. Liz Hamilton of Addilynn Memorial UMC
Wednesday, December 13
Host Church: John Wesley UMC, 311 Lee Street
Preaching: Rev. Ray Amos, Jr. of South Bristol UMC
Wednesday, December 20
Host Church: South Bristol UMC, 1809 Southside Avenue
Preaching: Rev. Caroline Hawthorne of St. Luke-Hunt Memorial UMCs
The King University Music Department is hosting a
Christmas tree lighting and candlelight caroling event
Thursday, Nov. 30 at 5:30 p.m.
The event will take place on the Oval located
on the main campus in Bristol, Tennessee.
Students, faculty, staff, and alumni along
with the local community are encouraged to participate.
The St. Luke Players will present a Christmas comedy, A Cricket County Christmas.
Thursday, Nov. 30, at 7 p.m.
and Saturday, Dec. 2, 2 p.m. and 7 p.m.
The public is invited to the free performances.
St. Luke United Methodist Church
105 North St., Bristol, VA.
Cast members are from St. Luke and Hunt Memorial United Methodist Churches.
Highlands Fellowship Church is hosting
Active Shooter Training
December 4 from 6:00 p.m.-9:00 p.m.
134 Commerce Court in Bristol, VA
The Bristol Virginia Police Department is conducting the training.
There is no charge to attend.
King University Choirs Annual Christmas Concert 
Friday, Dec. 8 at 7:30 p.m.
First Presbyterian Church in Bristol, Tennessee
(adjacent to School’s main campus)
Admission is free and open to all.
Attendees are asked to bring food or funds to benefit the Bristol Emergency Food Pantry.
December 20
7:00 p.m.
(Doors open at 6:00)
Colonial Heights
Christian Church
105 Meadow Lane
Kingsport, TN
Tickets at
and at
Colonial Heights
Church Office
Family Promise of Bristol 1st Annual Gingerbread Cookie Fundraiser!
Are you looking to give the perfect Christmas gift while supporting families with
children that are encountering homelessness?
Cookies are $25 each (order 10 or more for a reduced cost of $15 per cookie)
Several pick-up and delivery (Tri-cities area) dates available.
Call 276.494.0388 to place your order.
Everyone is invited to participate
in the creation of your church’s newsletter.
Send photos and announcements to admin@fumcbristol.wpcomstaging.com.
For each publication, information
is needed by noon on Wednesday.

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to a friend, neighbor or co-worker!
Share some good news today!
Calendar & Events Schedule 
Week of November 30-December 6
Thurs, Nov 30:    6:00pm-Yoga with Jean-The Upper Room
 Fri, Dec 1:       5:30pm-Belly Dancing Class-Yoga Studio
                     6:30pm-Belly Dancing Class-Yoga Studio
 Sat, Dec 2:      10:00am-Church-wide Hanging of the Greens 
 Sun, Dec 3:       9:30am-Sunday School Hour
9:30am-The River Service, TH
10:00am-Common Ground Service, Chapel
11:00am-Traditional Worship, Sanctuary
(childcare is provided from 9:30am to 12:00pm; children may be picked up at any time)
12:30pm-Choir Rehearsal

Mon, Dec 4:       1:00pm-Food Pantry Volunteers-Bristol Emergency Food Pantry
                     6:00pm-Belly Dancing Class-Yoga Studio
                     7:00pm-Hispanic Congregation PVUMC
Tues, Dec 5:      8:00am-Men’s Prayer Group-TH
                     6:30pm-Martha Circle Christmas Party-Home of Peggy Wilsn
Wed, Dec 6:      6:30pm-Youth Activity – Potluck Dinner

 To make changes or additions to the calendar
          contact Alan Gorrell 423-652-7377 
        or Sandy Gorrell 423-652-1987.
Our Vision-
Building A Community Where Anyone
Can Become
A Deeply Committed Christian

First United Methodist Church

Rev. Brandon Berg, Pastor (276.237.6498)

 322 Vance Dr., Bristol, TN 37620


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First United Methodist Church of Bristol Tennessee, 322 Vance Drive, Bristol, TN 37620