Newsletter: September 2-8, 2021

First United Methodist Church of Bristol, Tennessee

Your Weekly e-Newsletter and Events Schedule

Photo by Penny Hudson

Welcome to In-Person Worship Again….

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 continuously.

> 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.

September 5, 2021

Mark 7:24-37

“The Faith of the Overlooked”
Rev. Brandon Berg

From the Pastor’s Pen
 September 2, 2021

I’m a fan of prayer. I think there’s power in prayer. I even think we can change the mind of God with prayer. I don’t think that’s just something folks like Abraham can do. I’m pretty sure the promise God makes to the people of Israel through Solomon stands true for us today:

If my people who are called by my name humble themselves, pray, seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.

But I suspect that, more often than not, the heart that needs to be changed isn’t God’s; it’s ours. I suspect that the behavior that needs to be adjusted is ours. I suspect that prayer is at its most powerful not when we’re in tears or on our knees, but it’s when we’re on our feet.

So I want to quite simply offer a way to give our prayers feet today.

There are disasters we’ve been praying about. We United Methodists are really good at responding to them. Years ago, we founded the United Methodist Committee on Relief to be the first boots on the ground when all manner of disasters strike. Today, UMCOR Sunday represents the only time we raise funds for the administration of that organization. Every single other gift, in its entirety, that is given to UMCOR goes straight to the situation for which it is designated. 100%.

So if you’re praying for
Hurricane Ida
UMCOR is already there.

If you just want to offer help in preparing for the next disaster, put together a cleaning kit or hygiene kit or school kit. Or put together two. Or put together twenty. It’s not going to hurt anybody’s feelings to take in a truckload of supplies for UMCOR, I promise.

Sure, there are a lot of other ways to give your prayers feet. I can help you find those, too. But with so many folk trying to put their lives back together after Ida has ripped her way up through Louisiana and the Tennessee Valley, this seems like a particularly relevant place to start.

Go get to it, y’all.


Last Sunday at First UMC

14th Sunday After Pentecost

August 29, 2021

Prelude: Make Me A Servant by Kelly Willard, Phil Haga, organist

Hymn: For the Beauty of the Earth UMH 92

Responsive Reading: Song of Songs 2:8-13

Mark 7:1-8, 14-15, 21-23

“God Made Dirt; Dirt Don’t Hurt”
Rev. Brandon Berg

Hymn: Together We Serve TFWS 2175

Sound the Trumpet, Christ Is Lord by Martin Davis, Phil Haga, organist

Find the order of service here

and come pray with Rev. Berg here.

Morning Prayer

Rev. Berg streams morning prayer live on Facebook on weekday mornings in the 8:00 am hour.
Share your prayer requests with him or join him online.

Earthquake in Haiti

A 7.2 magnitude earthquake hit Haiti on Saturday, August 14.  This was followed by torrential rains from tropical storm Grace which hampered rescue efforts.  The latest statistics show that nearly 2,000 people have lost their lives as a result of the earthquake, with many more injured.  Add to this news the fact that Haiti is dealing with the covid-19 pandemic and political instability. 

We have heard the good news that the children from the Help for Haiti Children’s Shelter are safe.  The area where members of our church family, Leferne and Melila Preptit, are from is in a location that was in the earthquake’s path.  There is an immediate need for basic medical necessities. 

Leferne plans to travel to Haiti as soon as he can make arrangements and he is hoping to take extra luggage filled with as many supplies as he can pack to aid with the relief efforts.

Below is a list of requested items.  There will be a collection box in the church narthex for those wanting to bring their donated items on Sundays until Leferne is able to travel to Haiti.

Haiti Earthquake Relief 

  • Acetaminophen 500 mg
  • Tylenol 500 mg
  • Advil
  • Aspirin
  • Aleve
  • Zyrtec for allergy
  • Triple Antibiotic Ointment
  • Ibuprofen
  • Imodium A-D Anti-Diarrheal caplets and soft gels
  • Plastic for Tent
  • Toothpastes
  • Towels and hand towels
  • Blanket sheets
  • Bar Soaps

A view of a collapsed building following an earthquake, in Les Cayes, Haiti, in this still image taken from a video obtained by Reuters on August 14, 2021. REUTERS TV via REUTERS

A Note From Our Lay Leader

The Best Laid Plans…

Between poison ivy and a broken wrist this has been a summer of unplanned turns.  I no longer itch, and I can mow and sew and type although not as quickly…yet.  I’m sure each person has a story of unplanned things this summer.

The Preptits are dealing right now with a very big unplanned turn…the earthquake in Haiti.  It hit the area where their families live.  Leferne’s brother’s home was split in half!  Also, no visits have been possible until now to check out on our Mission due to the Covid pandemic.  It’s been 1 1/2 years since any visit.  We do know one of the girls who has been in the mission for several years is now in the Dominican Republic to study nursing.  I hope that gives you a happy feeling amidst all the sad.

Several First families have donated money for the trip and supplies for the Preptits to take with them.  (There is a collection box in the church.)  Over the counter pain killers and other medications are needed.  Leferne said those are items he has not had trouble getting to those who need them.  If you would like to donate supplies and do not attend the Sunday in-person service let me know ( and we will arrange a pickup in the parking lot.  The trip is planned for September 20, so we don’t have much time to collect items.

I don’t think many of us have been to Haiti.  But, we have Haiti in our congregation.  We have the Preptits who have shown us fortitude and faith.  Let us show them our love.

Send Your Pictures, News, and Announcements to Publish in the Newsletter

For each publication, information is needed by noon on Wednesday.

Photo by Akil Mazumder on

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Calendar of Events

Sept 2-8, 2021

Wednesdays 6:08 pm

Bristol Hub Youth at Reynolds Memorial UMC

Thursday, Sept 2

8:00pm – AA

Sunday, Sept 5

11:00am – Sunday Service at FUMC and available for viewing on Facebook and You Tube

8:00pm – AA

Tuesday, Sept 7


Sept 19

3:00pm – Clinch Mountain District Conference at Reynolds Memorial UMC

Sept 26

4:00pm – Board of Trustees

Nov 14

2:30pm – Charge Conference: Bristol Missional Hub at John Wesley UMC

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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