The latest news for you

First United Methodist Church
Bristol, Tennessee

Your Weekly e-Newsletter and Events Schedule
April 11-17, 2019
Palm Sunday
April 14, 2019

Luke 19:28-40
Lenten Practice #6: Palm
Rev. Brandon Berg

From the Pastor’s Pen
It’s the beginning of April, and we are right in the middle of track season.
You know, I was never athletic as a child, so I never dreamed I’d be organizing my life around sports. It surprises me to say words like that first sentence.
But here we are, in the middle of track season, with a meet just about every week.
Have you ever been to a track meet? They can be a bit hard to sit through, whether you’re a participant or a spectator. Track and Field is a sport that brings together kids with very different strengths and skill sets, and each event shows off a different talent. To a great degree, they don’t overlap at all.
Noah’s event is the 1600. It’s roughly a one-mile run: four times around a 400-meter track. It typically happens near the very end of the meet, which is great for us because we have a really difficult time – impossible, really – getting to a 4:00 meet at Holston Middle or Sullivan North High School. It’s rough on Noah because he has an hour and a half of other events to get through before his event rolls around. By the time the 1600 comes around, the stadium begins to look a little sparse, because a lot of athletes only stick around for their event.
What we try to encourage is that Noah support and cheer on every member of the team, and we model that when we arrive, which is typically only in time for the running events. We miss all the jumping and throwing stuff. We try to show the girls how to cheer for the whole team, too, and sometimes they catch on and help out.
It’s just difficult to be fully present for the whole event.
I have a lot of colleagues who find that to be true during Holy Week. With all the stuff we have going on all the time, it’s difficult to carve out an hour each day to come journey with Jesus through his last days in Jerusalem. A lot of clergy just give up and call it good enough to commemorate Holy Thursday and Good Friday, just to be there for the end of the march.
They don’t want to have a service for only ten people.
Well, I want to encourage you to be fully present for the whole event.
It’s not just good for you and your discipleship to walk the whole journey with Jesus; it’s good for all of us as a church to nurture each other along the way, to hear the old, old stories again. It’s good not just to hear and remember, but to participate in re-living the journey again, being as fully present as we are able, putting ourselves entirely into the story so that it comes vibrantly and even harshly to life through us.
The journey to the cross is hard. It’s harder than sitting through a track meet. But it’s absolutely worthwhile, and I hope you’ll join me next week as we make the pilgrimage again. We’ll gather every evening of Holy Week, from Monday all the way through Holy Thursday and Good Friday. We’ll journey into the darkness together, and rest in uncomfortable uncertainty as the disciples cowered in fear and all creation paused to see what would happen when God was put to death by human cruelty and rejection.
I encourage you to be fully present. It is a transformative experience.
And we are a people in need of transformation.

Feed the Hungry Offering
This week’s “Feed the Hungry” Offering will go to Family Promise of Bristol.
This program provides an opportunity for us to show God’s grace and Christ’s love to
children with homeless families in the Bristol area.

Meals On Wheels
is 100% funded by donations from church members;
there are no funds allocated from the church budget.
Please consider making a donation for purchase of groceries for food prep, or how about baking some spaghetti and placing in the kitchen freezer?
Your thoughtfulness will make a difference!
Call Brenda Hobbs or Julie Blanton
423-968-4391 or 423-914-9820

Clinch Mountain Mission Project
School Kits for Liberia
District Goal – 400 Kits

Please bring your school kits soon.
The last turn-in date will be in May.

Thank you for supporting the
Hands-on mission project!
Julie Blanton

A Note from Ron Schoenhardt About Where to Find Items:
“All items can be purchased at the Dollar Tree on the Volunteer Parkway EXCEPT the small solar-powered calculator and a box of 24-count crayons which I found at the Walgreens next door. Write your $5.00 check to the church. Write Mission Kit in the
left bottom corner of the check, and place it in the church offering plate.”

In Worship Last Sunday
John 12:1-8
Lenten Practice #5: Prepare

Loving God, we open our hearts to you. We invite you into our inmost being,
only to find you already there. Strengthen us in our quiet places and then
lead us into the work of justice and peace.

More love to thee O Christ, more love to thee!
Hear thou the prayer I make on bended knee.
This is my earnest plea: More love, O Christ, to thee;
more love to thee, more love to thee!
~Elizabeth Prentiss, 1869

Lord, you have prepared us for this time,
this time for us,
this place and people for you;
Now, Lord, we set aside all we have treasured
for the greatness of your glory.

Go, friends, and give to God all you are,
all you know, all you have,
and just wait …
God will do something extraordinary with you.

Church Financial Report for March 2019
The General Budget balance will be posted as quickly as possible following
the end of each month. This gives the most accurate picture of the financial status for First UMC.

    March 31 Balance (-)$9,384.20

Can you see the spiritual in the every day?
We have a challenge leading up to Easter to help open our eyes the presence around us. Post a photo in response to the word each day (or as many days as you can)!

Youth Event at the YMCA Saturday Evening!
Saturday, April 13, 6:25 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Combined Cluster Youth Night at YMCA

Bring $3.00

Monday, April 15
Worship Service, 7:00 p.m.
Tuesday, April 16
Worship Service, 7:00 p.m.
Wednesday, April 17
Worship Service, 7:00 p.m.
Thursday, April 18
Maundy Thursday Worship Service, 7:00 p.m.
Holy Communion, Foot Washing
Friday, April 19
Tenebrae Worship Service (Service of Darkness), 7:00 p.m.
Sunday, April 21
Sunrise Service, 6:30 a.m.
Joint Worship Service, 10:00 a.m.
Brunch, 11:00 a.m.
Children’s Egg Hunt, 11:00 a.m.

Lenten Luncheon
an Offering of the United Methodist Churches of Bristol
The Final Wednesday of Lent 2019
Worship and Mid-Day Food & Fellowship
Worship: 12:00 p.m. – 12:30 p.m. / Lunch: 12:30 p.m. – 1:00 p.m.

April 17
Addilynn Memorial UMC
3225 Avoca Road
Bristol, TN
Message by: Joyce Moore

The Fellowship Class and Youth events that usually occur on Wednesday evenings will not take place on April 17 as the
church instead comes together to observe Holy Week.

Easter Egg Hunt – April 21
Easter Sunday 11:00 a.m.
Would you help us by donating
small novelty toys
or a small monetary donation
Items must be small enough to place inside a plastic Easter Egg.
Donations needed by Sunday, April 14

Martha Circle
Tuesday, April 23
6:00 p.m.
Home of Debi Poulton
466 Springlake Road
Bristol, VA 24201

UMW Annual District Day Apart
Women from First UMC Participated in the UMW
Annual District Day Apart at Lebanon UMC on March 23.

Bristol Sings!
An evening of music benefiting Bristol Faith in Action
April 27, 2019 at 7:00 PM
State Street United Methodist Church
300 W. Valley Drive, Bristol VA
Featured Performers & Choirs
Tim Landis – Robin Ringer LaPointe – Shannan Miller –
Janeeva Brown – The UMC Community Choir – Lee St. Baptist Church
Tennessee High School – Vance Middle School –
Central Presbyterian Church
Comedy by Dr. Doug LaPointe, emcee
Suggested donation $10

John Wesley United Methodist Church
311 Less Street, Bristol, Virginia
Reverend Dr. Robert Kariuki, Pastor

“A Time to Recharge”
Sunday, April 28, 2019 at 5:00 p.m.
Guest Speaker
Reverend Dr. William Ward
Hood Memorial AME Zion Church
612 5th Street, Bristol, TN
Music from various choirs and musicians
Come and Be Blessed
All Are Welcome

With Your Help, Their Goal Was Met!
Sarah and Rebekah collected 19 boxes of donations for Niswonger Children’s Hospital. They also received 20 boxes of donations online. Those boxes will be sent to our troops overseas. 

A huge THANK YOU to everyone for their support this cookie season. The girls sold 1016 boxes of cookies and have earned enough money to pay for Girl Scout Camp!!!

Greetings from Willow, Alaska
A letter filled with appreciation and news from Joe-d and Christina Dowling-Soka has been received and is posted on the hallway bulletin board.
Have You Borrowed Anything?
Please take a moment to look around your home to see if you may have borrowed and forgotten to return any pots, plates, tools, tablecloths, etc. from our church kitchen. Workers have noticed that some of our supplies are missing.
(As for me, I am always needing to return ink pens – not to the kitchen – but to the office. I must purge my purse of pens about once a month as my desk supply dwindles. I take them, not because I need them, but because it is a non-thinking, yet finely-honed habit I’ve developed during my working career.)
Now that you have my confession (thank you – it was good for my soul), I hope you can offer grace to me and to others, as well, as we all check for things we’ve borrowed … and return them. Blessings, Carol

Be a Shepherd.
Mark Your Calendar for . . .
Friday, May 10
7:30 pm
At First United Methodist Church Bristol
“Light and Lively” concert
With Joy Smith-Briggs and Tim Landis
Invite friends, neighbors and relatives
Admission is by donation.

Spring Yard Sale
May 31 and June 1

Items may be stored at the church until time for the sale.

Worship and Picnic at Sugar Hollow State Park
Sunday, June 2

First United Methodist Church will hold a Sunday morning joint worship service and
picnic afterward at Sugar Hollow State Park. More details will follow . . .

Holston Annual Conference
at Lake Junaluska
June 9-12

Camp Bays Mountain
Registration for Summer Camp Is Open!!

To register, go to and click on the Summer Camp tab.
If you know of someone who is interested in applying for a counselor or staff position, please call Camp Director Jeff Wadley at 423.329.8401.

Travel to the Holy Land
Where Scriptures Come Alive
Join Bishop “Dindy” and Rusty Taylor on this “Travel with Friends”
Tour of the Holy Land, Greece, and Rome. 

August 28 – September 3, 2019
Holy Land                      $2,400
September 4 – 11, 2019
Greece & Rome             $2,100
There is a $300 per person deposit upon registration.
The final payment deadline is May 30, 2019.

Send Your Pictures and Announcements
to Publish in the Newsletter

Send your photos and announcements for the Newsletter
call Carol at 423.652.2811 M-Th, 9-2.
For each publication, information is
needed by noon on Wednesday.

Your Church Event and Planning Calendar
April 11-17, 2019
Thursday, April 11
10:30am-Homebound Meeting-Library
6:00pm-Yoga with Jean-Yoga Studio
6:30pm-Mankind Project-Youth Room
Friday, April 12
5:30pm-Belly Dancing Class-Yoga Studio
 6:30pm-Belly Dancing Class-Yoga Studio
Saturday, April 13
 6:25pm-YOUTH Night at YMCA (until 9pm)
Sunday, April 14
9:30am-The River Contemplative Worship Service-TH
9:30am-Sunday School Hour
10:00am-Common Ground Service-Chapel
11:00am-Traditional Worship Service-Sanctuary
12:15pm-Choir Rehearsal
5:00pm-Finance Committee-Library
6:00pm-Administrative Council-TH
Monday, April 15
6:00pm-Belly Dancing Class-Yoga Studio
7:00pm-Holy Week Service-Sanctuary
Tuesday, April 16
 8:00am-Men’s Prayer Group-TH
7:00pm-Holy Week Service-Sanctuary
Wednesday, April 17
12:00pm-Lenten Worship Service and Lunch-Addilynn Memorial UMC-Message by Joyce Moore
7:00pm-Holy Week Service-Sanctuary
            To make changes or additions to the calendar contact Alan Gorrell 423-652-7377
                                                   or Sandy Gorrell 423-652-1987.

First United Methodist Church
Rev. Brandon Berg, Pastor (276.237.6498)
 322 Vance Dr., Bristol, TN 37620

Our Vision
Building A Community Where Anyone
Can Become A Deeply Committed Christian