Newsletter: March 24-30, 2022

First United Methodist Church of Bristol, Tennessee

Your Weekly e-Newsletter and Events Schedule

Photo by cottonbro on

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.

> 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

LOCATION Adjustment:

Due to the sound problems in the sanctuary, Administrative Council has moved the Sunday service to Tankersley Hall until the sanctuary sound equipment is updated.

A substantial memorial has been given by Peggy Callison for Russ Basham. This has been designated for the planned audio/visual upgrade in the sanctuary. 

In-person worship at 11:00a.m. Sundays in the Tankersley Hall (temporarily) 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.

Fourth Sunday of Lent

March 27, 2022

Luke 15:1-3, 11b-32

Like Father, Like Son

(Extravagance Begets Extravagance)”

Rev. Brandon Berg

Last Sunday at First UMC

Third Sunday of Lent

March 20, 2022

Prelude Walk Hand in Hand by Johnny Cowell; Phil Haga, pianist

Opening Hymn UMH 381 Savior, Like a Shepherd Lead Us

Old Testament Reading: Isaiah 55:1-9

Responsive Reading: Psalm 63:1-8

Gospel Reading: Luke 13:1-9

Waiting for the Hidden Things

Hymn of Benediction UMH 121 There’s a Wideness in God’s Mercy
Postlude Let Me Be Consecrated by John Wimble; Phil Haga, pianist

Find the order of service here

and come pray with Rev. Berg here.


Russ Basham

     Peggy Callison – Audio/Visual Fund

     Sandy and Alan Gorrell – Audio/Visual

Richard Rollins

     Jennifer Price Smith and Charles R. Smith

     Sandy and Alan Gorrell – Audio/Visual Fund

Jeff Gorrell      

     Alan and Sandy Gorrell

Jim Hobbs

     Sandy and Alan Gorell – Audio/Visual Fund

Peggy Spangler

     Sandy and Alan Gorell – Audio/Visual Fund

Reba Elizabeth Johnson Lewis

     In remembrance by Creed Allan Lewis

Clinch Mountain District welcomes nationally-known United Methodist author, coach, and speaker Kay Kotan.

Is your congregation seeking new people but unsure about how to attract them?  Are you wondering: “How do we develop relationships with unchurched people? How do I share my own story or experience of Jesus with others? How can my church build a culture of invitation? If you or your church are asking these questions, come join us at the Get Their Name Workshop at Addilynn Memorial UMC on Saturday, March 26th from 10:00 am to 3:00 pm.

Sunday Training – 3p.m.-5p.m. will focus Cooperative Parish Ministry and Missional Hub training. 

Church Leadership Teams, Vision and Planning Teams Encouraged to Attend

Clergy Will Receive 0.6 CEU’s!!!

The cost for this event is $15 which includes lunch on Saturday and 2 of her books Get Their Names and Eight Game Changers for Being the Church in a Post Pandemic World with your pre-registration.  This training will help everyone learn how to invite others to our church.

To pre-register for this exciting event please click HERE. We hope to see you there!

Deadline to Register March 18 

May 2-4, 2022

Black Fox Lodge

3171 Parkway, Pigeon Forge, TN

Camp News

February 2022

Current Camp Needs

We are currently looking for used EMPTY Lysol wipe containers, they do not need to be the Lysol brand just the cylindrical containers. If you would like to help us accumulate these please let us know by contacting us at 423-349-8401. We appreciate your generosity. Clorox Disinfecting Wipes Value Pack, 75 Ct Each, Pack of 3  (Package May Vary) : Health & Household

Amazon wish list 

We have an Amazon Wish List that has been created for Camp Bays Mountain. There are multiple items on the list that we will need before summer camp gets started. If you are interested in purchasing something from our wish list please follow this link.

We are Hiring! 

If you are someone you know is interested in working at camp this summer please apply online. We are looking for counselors (18+ years old), support staff (16-18 years old), and adventure staff (21+ years old).

From the Pastor’s Pen
March 24, 2022

My go-to athletic endeavors are running and whitewater kayaking. Both of them depend heavily on products derived from petroleum products, from the varied types of foam that cushion and bounce my feet off pavement to every moisture-wicking material that isn’t wool, and from the neoprene spray skirt that deflects water from the inside of my rotomolded polyethylene kayak to the plastic shell of my helmet. There is some very small movement away from plastics in both sports, but it is very difficult to make that kind of shift when the gear has been so carefully specialized and fine-tuned for so long. That dependency is troubling, though. I don’t know how many tiny strips of red plastic have washed downstream after I’ve gouged my boat on rocks. I shudder to look at the bottom of my retired running shoes and realize how much foam I’ve left on the pavement to wash into wastewater.

Maybe it’s only a small part of the challenge of responsible stewardship of our environment, but it’s still a part. It’s not only something to keep in mind, but it’s something to act upon. It’s just a difficult step to take when a pair of good wool running socks is 20% more expensive than the CoolMax option. That’s protein for a meal in our house.

I think about this a lot, but Earth Day tomorrow has me focused on it a little more intentionally, and an email from United Methodist Creation Justice has me focused specifically on fabrics. I’ll plug that into this newsletter, and I hope you’ll join me in considering how we can be better caretakers of creation, since that’s our duty as the creatures God crafted in the Divine image. Our world keeps getting messier and hotter, and we know that’s not what God intends for us. Let’s figure out what we can do to change that.


Tips for April 2022

Refuse fast fashion allure and consumerism pressures. Reduce the amount

of clothing you buy. Reuse your garments for many years. Repair minor problems like a missing button or a loose hem. Recycle textiles responsibly. Remember the “lilies of the field” and Jesus’ assurance

(Matthew 6:28-33).

From our UM Social Principles: “We urge United Methodists to adopt sustainable habits and practices, including refraining from overconsumption, repurposing and recycling materials, avoiding products that pollute or otherwise harm the environment, and reducing the carbon footprints of individuals and families by reducing overall reliance on fossil fuels for heat, transportation, and other goods.”

Go thrifty; save the earth! When you purchase from a thrift or second-hand store, your choice uses fewer resources, generates fewer emissions and less waste, gives other people work, extends the life of the clothing, and keeps textiles out of the landfill. Try Thred Up, an online source, or one of the 4,245 Goodwill stores. Some churches also offer “nearly new” clothing at low or no cost. 

Read the clothing labels. Avoid fossil-fuel-based synthetics (polyester, nylon, acrylic, spandex, lycra). Choose items made of natural fibers (organic cotton, linen, wool, silk, hemp), recycled materials and fibers (including polyester), or sustainable plant-based Tencel.

Have eco-friendly fun with friends. Host a party for passing along the clothes children outgrow so quickly or for exchanging outfits with friends of the same size. Set a stitch-it-up time for learning the how-tos of mending, getting the repairs done, and talking about caring for the earth and one another.

When you need to buy clothing, shop for the company not just the product. Support businesses that practice sustainability and fair worker treatment in their products and production. Here’s a list of 35 Ethical and Sustainable Clothing Brands.

Make your clothes last longer. Wash them in cold water, which is less damaging than hot. Wash a full load, which reduces the agitation’s wear-and-tear on the items. Add a few pinches of salt rather than color-“safe” chemical bleaches, which are hard on the materials. Choose other natural remedies for getting stains out.

Avoid the landfills. Charities, thrift stores, “upcyclers,” and selected manufacturing all benefit from your donations through Retold, a mail-in service for recycling not just clothing but also household textiles, such as blankets, towels, and so on)—even wedding dresses. Retold takes items in poor condition as well as those worthy of resale. By carefully sorting through donations, the company has already diverted 18 million tons from landfills.

Look at what you are wearing. Whose hands cut the fabric? Whose labor stitched the pieces? Were they safe in their working conditions? Were they paid a living wage? Pray and advocate for garment workers. When you dress, say a blessing for those who provide for you.

Nurdles (microplastics) leached from the wastewater of washing machines cleaning clothing made of synthetic (petroleum-based) fibers, end up in the water systems of the world. Untold numbers of fish and other marine life try to eat them and starve to death. Untold numbers of people eating fish are ingesting plastic. Switch to clothes made of organic fibers or use a GuppyFriend Washing Bag to stop microwaste.

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 Love Beyond Borders campaign aims to raise funds for the equitable distribution of COVID-19 vaccines around the world. The initiative has emerged from First United Methodist Church, Boise, ID and seeks to engage The United Methodist Church in supporting COVAX alongside UNICEF, the key vaccine delivery partner.

All funds raised will be sent to UNICEF for this project. More information about Love Beyond Borders is here.

A Note From Our Lay Leader

Last Sunday I watched a program about a man who had suffered a stroke that left him unable to use his left arm.  His wish was to be able to hug again.  His daughter was a physical therapy student at the time.  The students all felt his pain at not hugging.  Together four of the students designed and made a strap to fasten to his left wrist and hold in his right hand. They call it the Hugger.  He could form a “halo” to put over the other’s back and then HUG.  The tears of joy for both the hugger and the hugged  was wonderful.

     Four students changed lives for the better.  How many of us with God’s help can reassure visitors to our church they are wanted?  How many of us can work together to rebuild our times together? How many of us just want a hug?  


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

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

Give Online

(First United Methodist of Bristol, Clinch Mountain District)

Calendar of Events

Mar 24-30, 2022

Sundays 6:08 pm

Bristol Hub Youth at Reynolds Memorial UMC

Thursday, Mar 25

8:00pm – AA

Sunday March 27

9:30am – Sunday School in the Shaw-Anchor room

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

8:00pm – AA

March 28

9:15 a.m. King University Faith and Culture Speaker Series: An Unexpected Music: Poetry and Renewal by Malcolm Guite at King University Memorial Chapel

7:00 p.m. King University Faith and Culture Speaker Series: Songs and Sonnets: An Evening of Poetry, Song, and Story by Malcolm Guite at Emmanuel Episcopal Church

March 30

12:00 p.m. Bristol Missional Hub Lenten Luncheon at Three Springs UMC

6pm The River Service

April 3

9:30am – Sunday School in the Shaw-Anchor room

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

3:00 p.m. King University Faith and Culture Speaker Series: In Concert: Bill Linderman at King University Memorial Chapel

8:00pm – AA

April 4

9:15 a.m. King University Faith and Culture Speaker Series: In Concert: Bill Linderman at King University Memorial Chapel

April 6

12:00 p.m. Bristol Missional Hub Lenten Luncheon at Saint Luke UMC

6pm The River Service

April 10

Palm Sunday

9:30am – Sunday School in the Shaw-Anchor room

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

8:00pm – AA

April 11

9:15 a.m. King University Faith and Culture Speaker Series: The Stewardship of Pain: A Case Study by Jeffrey Munroe at King University Memorial Chapel

6:00 p.m. Holy Monday Service

7:00 p.m. King University Faith and Culture Speaker Series: On Paying Attention: Frederick Buechner and the Art of Listening to Your Life by Jeffrey Munroe at Central Presbyterian Church

April 12

6:00 p.m. Holy Tuesday Service

April 13

12:00 p.m. Bristol Missional Hub Lenten Luncheon at State Street UMC

6:00 p.m. Holy Wednesday Service

April 14

6:00 p.m. Maundy Thursday Service

April 15

6:00 p.m. Good Friday Service

April 17

Easter Sunday

9:30am – Sunday School in the Shaw-Anchor room

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

8:00pm – AA

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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