Newsletter: October 28-November 3, 2021

First United Methodist Church of Bristol, Tennessee

Your Weekly e-Newsletter and Events Schedule

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.

October 31, 2021

Mark 12:28-34

“Where You Go, I Will Go”
Rev. Berg

From the Pastor’s Pen
October 28, 2021

On Saturday morning, Jonesborough is hosting the 13th annual Haunted Half Marathon. It’s a fun race that the town really gets into, and it’s a tight little course that stays fairly close to historic downtown Jonesborough, so runners get to enjoy the seasonal decor with which the town is bedecked.

The organizers of the race offer a couple options. I’m going to be running the full race on my own, but Sarah and Rebekah have enlisted the help of a couple speedy Bristol runners to create a team. Each runner will be responsible for a little more than three miles. Planned carefully, a relay team can make better time than those of us running the full 13.1 miles. It’s simple, really: it’s easier to run a shorter distance faster than a longer distance.

You can insert your own observations about some things in life being a marathon, not a sprint.

What I’d offer for your consideration, though, is that a thoughtfully organized team can accomplish a lot more than an individual can. A thoughtfully organized team will also relieve everyone of the burden of carrying a task alone.

I’m thankful that what Jesus calls us to be in the Church is not a bunch of solo runners, but a solid team. Jesus calls us to work together, to bring our individual gifts — our prayers, our presence, our gifts, our service, and our witness, as we covenant in our Baptismal and membership vows — so that we can comprise a powerful and spirit-filled team offering Christ to all the world. I’m thankful that you are a part of that team, and that you’re committed to FUMC Bristol.

I’m also thankful that FUMC Bristol is part of the larger team of United Methodist churches in Bristol, an even larger team within the Clinch Mountain District, a team of almost 900 churches in the Holston Conference, and a powerful connectional worldwide United Methodist Church. I’m thankful that The United Methodist Church is only one small iteration of God’s Church. We need the diversity of all God’s people to make the Kingdom of God a glorious reality.

But first, we need you.

I’m thankful you’re part of this team. I hope you’re prayerful about the gifts you bring to bear. I hope your prayers and your reflection empower you to live more fully into the calling Jesus is putting on your heart.

It’s a (half) marathon, not a sprint, but it’s a lot easier to run if we work together.

By the way, I know the weather won’t be great for spectating, but the girls would love for you to come cheer them on Saturday morning.


Last Sunday at First UMC

22st Sunday After Pentecost

October 24, 2021

What Wondrous Love Is This by Paul J. Christiansen; Phil Haga, Organist

Opening Hymn UMH 545 The Church’s One Foundation

Psalm 34:1-8

Mark 10:46-52

“The Lord Delivers” by Rev. Berg

Hymn of Benediction TFWS 2282 I’ll Fly Away

Postlude Joyful, Joyful, We Adore Thee by Stephen Slater; 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.


The Preptits are most concerned about the missionaries and family members who have been kidnapped by a gang in Haiti.  This is another worry on top of so many for them.  Can you imagine if this happened in our country!  Please pray for the Haitian people and the Preptits and the missionaries.

The items collected for the Haiti earthquake are on their way to Haiti.  The Preptits took them to Memphis to start them on their way.  There is a person chosen to pick them up and save them until they can be used.  Right now the Preptits are not able to travel to Haiti. The situation is just too dangerous.

Please pray for the Haitian people and the Preptits.  This is a most difficult time.

Elk Garden School Community Ministries needs 600 cans of SpaghettiOs or Ravioli for Holiday Boxes. Rev. Natalie Justice will pick them up by November 15th.

From the Finance Committee:

Red Number Report from Finance

As of September 1, we were-$9,929.91 in our General Fund.  As of September 30 we are -$27,253.18
There are no more loans to count on.  If you have not had the opportunity to give to the church, please consider donating at this time.  There are three months left in our fiscal year to change the report to BLACK Numbers.

It’s Charge Conference Time!

Charge Conference is the Election Season of the local United Methodist Church. The mission and the membership (that’s you!) of the local church is represented in the work of multiple teams, including (but not limited to):

Administrative Council

Finance Committee

Board of Trustees

Staff Parish Relations Committee

Lay Leadership Committee

Missions Team

Worship Team

I hope you’ll do a handful of things in preparation for this year’s Charge Conference.

  1. Pray. We need the power and guidance of your prayer for us, but also because prayer (as noted below) guides you to…
  2. Get Involved. The gifts you bring to Christ’s Body are unique and beautiful and important. You see the needs of our community and the gifts of our church in a way that nobody else does, and we need your voice, your hands, and your feet.
  3. Be Present. Charge Conference is the one regularly scheduled time we, as a church, are democratic. This is when your vote counts loudly and clearly. This is also when we get to see what ministries and miracles other churches around us are celebrating, and that’s an exciting thing to hear!

So put Charge Conference on your calendar, and in the meantime, talk to your Lay Leadership Committee about how God is nudging you to get involved and active at FUMC Bristol this year. We need to hear from you.

The Lay Leadership Committee is:

Brandon Berg

Sue Dietz

Sandy Gorrell

Trinka Felty

Annual Conference Nominees Needed

Each District of the Holston Conference is allotted a certain number of at-large members of the Annual Conference in addition to those elected at Charge Conference and in other ministry areas. There are currently more laity positions available than nominees. If you are interested in being a member of the Holston Annual Conference in 2022 with full voting rights, please contact Rev. Berg or our Clinch Mountain District Administrative Assistant, Monika Hunter. 

The Emmaus Ministries Virtual Walk and Challenge takes place October 1 – November 12, 2021. During this six-week period, we challenge you to walk 14,000 steps (7 miles/ 11.5 kilometers) (approximately the distance between Jerusalem and Emmaus) at your convenience and in the area of your choice, wherever you might be. Learn more here or at the registration link above.

A Note From Our Lay Leader


Recently I watched an interview with Jane Goddall who has done work with Chimpanzees for many years.  She talked about the effects of climate change.  At 87 years old she is still an active advocate for the earth and animals.  When asked she said she would just as soon slow down, but there is too much to do. She went on to say that no one can do it all, but we can “JUST DO SOMETHING.”   God never promised a cushy retirement.  He promised he’d be with us. We need to pick something and do something.  My hope is you will choose First and help to get her back to pre pandemic life.

Sue Dietz

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

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

Give Online

Calendar of Events

Oct 28-Nov 3, 2021

Sundays 6:08 pm

Bristol Hub Youth at Reynolds Memorial UMC

Thursday, Oct 28

8:00pm – AA

October 31

Reformation Sunday

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

8:00pm – AA

Nov 1

King Institute for Faith and Culture Lecture Series: Malcolm Guite, Poet, priest, and musician, University of Cambridge

9:15 a.m. Memorial Chapel An Unexpected Music: Poetry and Renewal

7:00 p.m. Emmanuel Episcopal Church, Bristol, Va. Songs and Sonnets: An Evening of Poetry, Song, and Story

Tuesday, Nov 2

8:00pm – AA

Nov 7

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

All Saints Sunday

8:00pm – AA

Nov 8

King Institute for Faith and Culture Lecture Series: Peter Croft, Founder, J.B. Phillips Society

9:15 a.m. Memorial Chapel J.B. Phillips: The Ring of Truth and the Price of Success

7:00 p.m. Emmanuel Episcopal Church, Bristol, Va. J.B. Phillips: The Fresh Air of Heaven

Nov 14

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

Organ and Tissue Donor Sunday

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

8:00pm – AA

Nov 25


Nov 28

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

United Methodist Student Sunday

First Sunday of Advent

Bristol Missional Hub Advent Services will be virtual this year, posted on Wednesdays during Advent.

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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