Newsletter: May 20-26

First United Methodist Church
Bristol, Tennessee
Your Weekly e-Newsletter and Events Schedule
May 20-26, 2021

Welcome to In-Person Worship Again….

We rejoice in once again gathering together for in-person worship!

If you are uncomfortable with worshiping in person or unable to join us for whatever reason, please tune in as we live-stream the service on Facebook.

  • Enter the narthex doors beside the sanctuary.
  • Wear a cloth mask that covers your mouth and nose until you are seated if you are vaccinated; if you are not fully vaccinated wear your mask continuously.
  • wear your mask when participating in singings and readings.
  • Maintain at least six feet of space between yourself and anyone outside of your immediate household.
  • Minimize your use of the lavatory and sanitize the spaces you use, and
  • Exit the Sanctuary through the side doors closest to the parking lot.

Schedule Adjustment:

In-person worship at 11:00a.m. Sundays in the sanctuary
can also be viewed on the church Facebook page.

If you have not connected to FUMC via Facebook,
please go do that. You can also connect to Rev. Berg
on Facebook, on Twitter, and on Instagram.
He will try to share uplifting and empowering things
on those media.

Heritage Sunday

May 23rd, 2021
John 15:26-27, 16:4b-15
"Upon All Flesh"

Rev. Brandon Berg

From the Pastor's Pen

Wear your red this Sunday.

This is the one Sunday during the entire Church year when our paraments are red. They’re purple during Advent and Lent, white during Christmastide and Eastertide, and green all the rest of the year, but for this single week, we bring out the big, bold, fire colors.

So wear your red, too.

Do it for the same reason you dig out your ugly Christmas sweaters or your best tie or hat for Easter. They help you feel festive, in the mood. They do what habits were designed to do: they put monastic practitioners in a specific state of mind.

So on Pentecost, the 23rd of May, 2021, bring out your most flamingly red, polylingual, exciting garb. We’ll celebrate with you. Let’s get ourselves in the mood for the transformation God is doing among and within us.

Wear your red. Let’s get excited!


While we are practicing social distancing in response to the COVID-19 outbreak,
FUMC will not be keeping regular office hours.
If you need to reach Rev. Berg, he will still be responding by email at
and by text or call (276) 237-6498

Last Sunday

7th Sunday of Easter

Words of Greeting and

by Sue Dietz

Responsive Reading
led by Rev. Berg

Psalm 47
adapted from the New Revised Standard Version

Clap your hands, all you peoples;
shout to God with loud songs of joy.
For the Lord, the Most High, is awesome,
a great king over all the earth.
The Lord subdued peoples under us,
and nations under our feet.
The Lord chose our heritage for us,
the pride of Jacob, beloved of the Divine.

God has gone up with a shout,
the Lord with the sound of a trumpet.
Sing praises to God, sing praises;
sing praises to our King, sing praises.
For God is the king of all the earth;
sing praises with a psalm.

God is king over the nations;
God sits on the holy throne.
The princes of the peoples gather
as the people of the God of Abraham.
For the shields of the earth belong to God;
the Lord is highly exalted.

Opening Hymn
"A Mighty Fortress"
UMH 110

sung by Phil Haga

Gospel Reading

led by Rev. Berg

Luke 24:44-53
Common English Bible

Jesus said to them, “These are my words that I spoke to you while I was still with you—that everything written about me in the Law from Moses, the Prophets, and the Psalms must be fulfilled.” Then he opened their minds to understand the scriptures. He said to them, “This is what is written: the Christ will suffer and rise from the dead on the third day, and a change of heart and life for the forgiveness of sins must be preached in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things. Look, I’m sending to you what my Father promised, but you are to stay in the city until you have been furnished with heavenly power.”

He led them out as far as Bethany, where he lifted his hands and blessed them. As he blessed them, he left them and was taken up to heaven. They worshipped him and returned to Jerusalem overwhelmed with joy. And they were continuously in the temple praising God.

Last Week's Sermon

"You Are Witnesses"


Rev. Brandon Berg

Closing Hymn

"Be Still my Soul"
UMH 534

Sung by Phil Haga

New Health and Safety Procedures
Subsequent to new advisement from the Clinch Mountain District on masking, our administrative council met this week to issue revised health
policies for church gatherings.

Click on the link below to read the changes now in effect.

Yes! This Sunday we may now resume singing of hymns during the service.

Betty Curtis places the first hymnal back into the pew.
Need Mission Kit Receiving Team Help!

The district office needs help
Tuesday through Wednesday
May 25th and 26th
9 am – 4:30 pm.
Please email or call the District Office and let Monika know if you can help. ~or~ (276) 628-4421

Also, it's not too late to assemble and donate a Mission Kit!
Please drop them off at Reynolds Memorial UMC by
Tuesday, May 25 and Wednesday, 26th during office hours.
Please call the office, (276) 628-4421, and let them know you've arrived. Then they'll meet you by the side door on Russell Street (2nd door from the corner).
Have check ready to write to Clinch Mountain District for $5/kit.

Click here for instructions on assembling a School Mission Kit
School Mission Kits

Grief Support Group…

Recovery at Bristol is pleased to announce the formation of a new support group focusing on grief and loss. It will meet online via Zoom immediately following the Recovery Praise Service which begins each Thursday at 7 p.m. We plan for this group to transition to an In-Person group when COVID-19 restrictions are lifted.

The group will be led by Melissa Wright, LMSW. Melissa is a social worker and active member of First United Methodist Church in Bristol. She has a focus on grief counseling and brings a great deal of experience.

See the link below for information and a registration link.

Vaccine Roundtable Discussion

Now that effective and safe vaccines are widely available across the state for everyone 12 and older, Protect my Care and Southern Christian Coalition is hosting a COVID-19 Vaccine Roundtable with both doctors and pastors to address your vaccine related questions and vaccine hesitancy.

WHAT: COVID-19 Vaccine Roundtable
WHEN: Thursday at 12:15pmCDT/1:15EDT.
WHERE: Zoom – Register at or
Facebook – Live streaming on our FB page

The new Annual Conference Schedule is as follows:

June 8, 2021 | VIRTUAL Clergy Session: ZoomWebinar-2:00pm
June 12, 2021 | VIRTUAL Annual Conference: Zoom Webinar-1:00pm
August 27, 2021 | Memorial Service: First Broad Street UMC-3:00pm
August 27, 2021 | Ordination Service: First Broad Street UMC- 7:00pm
August 28, 2021 | In-Person Annual Conference:
MeadowView Conference Resort & Convention Center – 12:00 – 6:00 pm

A Note From Our
Lay Leader

Do No Harm –

Let me tell you about the Administrative Council meeting last Sunday. Now do not leave, this might just help you understand as it did me. There were twelve in attendance. The decisions were made by consensus and there was much discussion. The CDC and Bishop’s Cabinet were our starting points. The question do we or do not we require measures to protect from Covid19.
CDC told us we could go without masks or other measures if fully vaccinated. The Bishop’s Cabinet said it was important to follow the Wesleyan philosophy to do no harm. After a show of hands indicating we were all two weeks out from our final shot, we took off our masks. It was OK. It was wonderful. We also established we did not like wearing masks.
As discussion went along Wesley began to lead our thinking more than the CDC. What about our kids who do not qualify yet? What about those who cannot have the vaccine? What about those who are immune compromised by illness or other problems? We want to sing! Didn’t Wesley instruct us about that too? We want to talk to friends. We want to have communion. We want you back in worship and not afraid to be in church!
We worked and planned. Some things you will like, others you may think are silly, some you may not agree with. We need to follow the steps such as wearing our masks when singing, take off the mask when sitting with your family unit, wear your mask for responsive readings and other congregational
replies. You will not have to have your temperature taken or answer the old questions. You will be able to have communion on certain Sundays although it will not be what you have done. Please follow the rules and cause no harm.
We are entering a new phase. Let us work together to protect others. Let us get to a point we can clear out all the yard sale things and have a lot of fun selling our stuff together. It is a new day, just not a day like we might expect.

Sue Dietz

To donate to the current pandemic crisis in India, Global Ministries will again promote its UMCOR COVID-19 Response Fund (Advance #3022612). Gifts can be made online or sent by mail to Global Ministries/UMCOR, PO Box 9068, New York, NY 10087-9068. (“Advance #3022612” should be written on the memo line.)
Here's a link to The Call,
 the weekly email newsletter from the Holston Conference

on weekday mornings in the 8:00am hour.
Share your prayer requests with him
or join him online.
Remember that you can mail your offering or bring it to the church at
322 Vance Drive, Bristol, TN 37620
or give online at
Send your photos and announcements for the Newsletter
to or call Julie at 423.914.9820.
For each publication information is needed by noon on Wednesday.
Calendar of Events
May 20-26, 2021

Sunday, May 23
11:00am-Sunday morning service IN-PERSON and live-streamed on Facebook

Tuesday, May 25

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

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