Newsletter: April 28-May 4, 2022

First United Methodist Church of Bristol, Tennessee

Your Weekly e-Newsletter and Events Schedule

Photo by Valeria Boltneva 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.

Third Sunday of Easter

Native American Ministries Sunday

May 1, 2022

John 21:1-19

Do You Love Me?”

Rev. Brandon Berg

Last Sunday at First UMC

Second Sunday of Easter

April 24, 2022

Festival of God’s Creation

John 20:19-31

Name Your Barrier”

Find the order of service here

and come pray with Rev. Berg here.

Many Hands Make Light Work, So Please Lend Us Yours!

Opportunities to help FUMC clear space and raise funds:

Yard Sale: Let’s organize a Yard Sale and turn all those donated items into much-needed funds for our church and ministries. We’re looking at a weekend in June or July and we’ll need volunteers to access, price and photograph goods; move tables and items to set up beforehand; work the register and help people shop and check out during the event. If you can help with any of this, or want to be involved in the planning process, contact us using the form below.

Harvest Fete: It’s time to plan the Fall Harvest Fete! It was a successful, fun event when we had it pre-covid, so let’s come back better than ever! We’re needing people to begin planning on a Task Force, so if you can help with Kids Activities, Vendor Coordination, Jumble Sale Organization, Art Auction, Bake Sale, Advertising, Food Truck/Snack Sales, or Volunteer Coordination, then please fill out the form below.

It’s been a long winter, as they say, but we have wonderful news!

We’re delighted to announce 𝗙𝗼𝘂𝗿 𝗣𝗶𝗮𝗻𝗼𝘀 𝗶𝗻 𝗣𝗿𝗮𝗶𝘀𝗲 will be in concert again, May 14, 3:00 & 7:00 pm, at the ETSU Martin Center for the Arts! Proceeds benefit Isaiah 117 House, a marvelous ministry that serves kids awaiting foster care placement.

Need convincing? Have a sneak peek:

Book your groups TODAY–and together, we will celebrate what God is doing for precious foster children in East TN & beyond!

$25 individual, $20 groups of 10 or more. See you soon!

Deadline to Register March 18 

May 2-4, 2022

Black Fox Lodge

3171 Parkway, Pigeon Forge, TN


Helen Roberts-Evans Director, Department of General Education and Ministry, Liberia Conference of the UMC.  The local church should write one check for total kits to their district office (EX: 10 kits x $5 = $50).  Please do not put money in the container! We will be collecting Hands on Mission buckets and kits once again this year.  Collection date will be June 1st-2nd at Fairview UMC in Maryville.  The local pick up will be

Clinch Mountain: School Kits — Goal 400 Pack all items in a 2-gallon Zip-Loc bag.

  • 1 12” ruler
  • 1 small calculator
  • 1 10-12 pk. pens (blue or black)
  • 1 coloring book
  • 1 10-12 pk. pencils
  • 1 pack erasers
  • 1 100-150 sheet pk. notebook paper (wide-ruled)
  • 1 small dictionary (new or used)
  • 1 box crayons or markers (24 ct.)
  • 3 spiral notebooks (70 ct.)
  • 1 pair flip flops (adult M-L size)
  • 1 poncho (adult).

Mission School Kit Drop-OffTuesday and Wednesday – May 24 & 259am – 4:30pm

Reynolds Memorial UMC Bristol, VA

Need Mission Kit Receiving Team Help!

We need help Tuesday and Wednesday, May 24th and 25th, 9am – 4:30 pm.   

Please email or call the District Office ~or~ (276) 628-4421


We have 55 Dictionaries here at the Clinch Mountain District Office if anyone needs some.  $1.00 to purchase.  Please call or email the District Office.  

Camp News

April 2022

Male Camp Counselors needed!!
We have a great group of young adults already secured to work at camp this summer. We are still looking for two young adult males to finish our crew. We need these counselors to love Jesus, love working with children, and love the outdoors. They must be 18 years or older when camp starts (June 5th). The weekly salary starts at $325. We pay for all training certifications along with housing and food while they are at camp. They can apply online at

Registration is open!

We have reached almost 50% of our registration goal! Help us to get to 400 campers this summer. Spots are filling up, so if you want to make sure your camper is at camp this summer register today! Register online at

Amazon Wish List
Are you wondering how you can help Camp Bays Mountain? Well purchasing something off our Amazon Wish List would help us tremendously. Please have the items shipped to the camp at 500 Hood Rd Kingsport, TN 37660. 

From the Pastor’s Pen
April 28, 2022

On Tuesday morning I had a meeting in Atkins, Virginia I had to attend, but I wanted to make sure I started the day off, as usual, with Morning Prayer. That’s an important piece of self-care for me. But as I walked out the door of the church to hustle off to my next destination, I heard… how does the phrase go?
…the sound was like the sound of mighty waters
There. Thank you, Ezekiel.
I know that sound, of course. Years of experience on whitewater has endeared that sound to my consciousness.
I knew I wasn’t close enough to Beaver Creek to hear it that clearly, so I looked south in the direction of the sound, and everything beyond Holston Drive was blurred. It took me a couple slow seconds to realize I was looking at the front wall of a downpour. In fact, it took the mist blowing up from the front of the wall of rain to make me realize exactly what I was looking at. I suppose I’ve never see it that clearly and that close.
That gave me just enough time to bolt down to the car.
That’s a strange reaction, isn’t it? It’s just water. What was I afraid of, getting wet? That’s just silly.

But I guess that’s not the only silly choice I make. Try as I might to be level-headed and reasonable, I do make a lot of choices out of fear. A foolish number of choices, really, given the number of times I’ve read and preached on the tremendous number of times some messenger of God is recalled reiterating, “Do not be afraid!”

But here I am again, with one more reminder that I still have a long way to go before I reach perfection in love. I’m working on it, though. I’m working on remembering how to dance in the rain instead of running from it.
I’m getting there. I hope you are, too.


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

You are the Key

I was part of a planning committee for a convention that took place last weekend at Meadowview.  I was awed by the amount of work we did over two years to make it a success. We had seven chapters who chose the parts that their members could work on. The organization raises money through pecan sales, flower sales, etc. and pools the money with other chapters in each state.  We are able to help women achieve educational goals and run the only All-Women-Owned College.  It reminds me of the sales we’ve had at First and the support for Help for Haiti.  We are worn out after the yard sales, but we are proud of the help we have been able to give Haiti children during very hard times.  

Isn’t it time to begin to plan and work to start up our missions and beat the Covid Coma?


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

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

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(First United Methodist of Bristol, Clinch Mountain District)

Calendar of Events

Apr 28-May 4, 2022


9:30 a.m. Sunday School

11:00 a.m. Morning Worship

6:08 p.m.: Bristol Hub Youth at Reynolds Memorial UMC


6:00 p.m. The River: a Service of Contemplative Evening Prayer

Thursdays 8:00pm

AA Meetings

May 2

Jubilation 2022 at the Black Fox Lodge, Pigeon Forge

May 8

Mother’s Day

May 24

Aldersgate Day

June 5-8

Holston Annual Conference at Lake Junaluska Conference & Retreat Center

June 12

Last Sunday for Rev. Berg

July 3

First Sunday for Rev. Casey Irwin

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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