Newsletter: August 25-31, 2022

First United Methodist Church of Bristol, Tennessee

Your Weekly e-Newsletter and Events Schedule

Flowers given by the Wagners in Memory of Ernestine Blanton; Photo by Penny Hudson

Welcome to In-Person Worship Again….

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

The CDC has designated our local area as *ORANGE (HIGH)* for COVID-19 transmission this week, so:

> Masks are STRONGLY encouraged for gathering in person – please respect the safety concerns of others. Masks will be available if you forget to bring your own.

> Please sit with members of your household at a reasonable distance from others

> Sanitize the spaces you use

> If you are unwell, we hope you will stay home and join our fellowship virtually.

Church Office Hours:

Sundays 2-6 PM

Tuesdays 4-7 PM

Wednesdays 4-8 PM

Pastor Casey’s position as a teacher has resumed – please leave a voicemail, text, or email anytime and she will contact you on breaks or after school as needed.

In-person worship is at 11:00a.m. Sundays in the Sanctuary AND can 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. Irwin on Facebook, on Twitter, and on Instagram.

Twelfth Sunday after Pentecost

August 28, 2022

Scripture: Luke 14:1, 7-14

Sermon: Rev. Casey Irwin

Last Sunday at First UMC

August 21, 2022

11th Sunday After Pentecost

Prelude: My Jesus, I Love Thee (Theme and variation) by A. J. Gordon;Phil Haga, organist

Hymn of Praise: 731 Glorious Things of Thee Are Spoken

Scripture: Luke 12:49-56 

Sermon: The Hard Truth – Rev. Casey Irwin

Hymn of Benediction: 261 Lord of the Dance

Postlude: Sing Them Over Again to Me by John Ribble; Phil Haga, organist

Photo by Penny Hudson

From the Pastor’s Pen

August 25, 2022

Sometimes it feels like Bristol has a UMC church on every corner, and then you add in all the other churches around! There are so many opportunities, and yet churches often struggle to reach every niche group that exists. Cooperative ministry, like our Missional Hub, can be such a blessing. We have opportunity to offer what we do best — arts ministries, community groups, decades of mission work — and connect with what other churches do well, all without competing for members! Instead, we share our gifts and talents, complementing one another. As Paul says in Corinthians 12, we are “many parts, but one body.”
We have opportunity, through a longstanding connection with South Bristol UMC and Addilyn Memorial UMC, to move forward with intentional partnering in ministry. While historically, we have connected solely over mission work and fellowship meals, we would like to pursue as many cooperative ministries as God calls us to. For example, South Bristol has a women’s Bible Study group on Tuesday mornings that has invited women from all 3 churches to join.More specifically though, as we discern our shared ministry work, Rev. Susan Arnold has offered to facilitate our process of developing our Hub in 5 Sunday afternoon training sessions. You can come to one or all of the sessions— September 4, 18, 25 and October 2, 9. Our hope is to learn quickly how we can work together in more than just the occasional project. Instead we are praying for the best ways to build sustainable ministry on every corner of Bristol, TN in the name of Jesus.

Pastor Casey


Many Thanks

To the Organ Fund for Richard Rollins by Kathy and Larry Wagner

To the Memorial Fund for Ernestine Blanton by Kathy and Larry Wagner

Rummage Sale Updates

The Rummage Sale for mission funding has a plan! Early October, date TBA, we will host a sale of the items we began gathering pre-pandemic. United Women in Faith will be coordinating the details through September to make the sale a success.

September 7th at 5:00 PM will be our first workday and dinner.

The plan is to move all the larger items and heavier boxes when several of our strongest members and friends are available. So mark your calendars, and bring anyone who can lift along with you! Those who cannot lift can work on tasks such as organizing items or unpacking boxes. Everyone can be helpful!
More dates and details to come!

August 27 11:00am – 7:00pm – TriPride parade begins at 11am followed by the all day festival event at Cumberland Square Park. Anyone is welcome to attend in support and love for our LGBTQ+ community members. We did not register as a sponsor, booth, or marching group– just a presence from the church affirming that all people are loved by God. We will meet at the church at 10:15 for anyone who wants to go as a group. Tickets are FREE, but required for entry. Contact Pastor Casey with questions or for help with tickets. Safety procedures are similar to concerts and can be found here

South Bristol UMC is hosting a Tuesday morning Women’s Bible Study open to any women in the area. Beginning September 6 at 9:30 AM

 Our study will be Beth Moore’s “James, Mercy Triumphs”.  Books will be available at the first gathering. Price TBD. Contact Nancy Pierce at South Bristol with any questions. 

In light of the recent floodings, Clinch Mountain District needs your help for the

Eastern Kentucky Flood Relief Program
We are currently collecting the following items for UMCOR CLEANING BUCKETS AND HYGIENE KITS 

*Laundry Detergent (liquid or powder)
*Any cleaning supplies including mops, brooms, and squeegees
*Air mattresses with either hand-or battery-operated pumps
* Canned food items that can be eaten without heat *Food/snacks that do not require refrigeration, i.e., nuts, peanut butter, chips
*Plastic spoons, forks, and knives
*Feminine hygiene products
*Baby diapers
*Baby food
*Blankets (New or gently used & laundered) 

Bring your items to collection boxes in the sanctuary by and we will deliver them OR
Drop them off directly at Pleasant View UMC-Abingdon 


Bristol Faith in Action

The Food Pantry is running low on supplies to serve the needs of our local community. Please consider donating:

  • breakfast items such as cereal, oatmeal, pop tarts,breakfast bars, grits, 
  • Peanut butter 
  • Jelly
  • saltine type crackers
  • canned fruit
  • instant potatoes
  • beef stew
  • Individual items for homeless that do not require can openers.

While food is our mission, we are always asked for hygiene items and cleaning supplies.

You can bring your donations to the First for collection boxes as you enter the sanctuary or drop your donations directly at Bristol Faith in Action

Photo by on

Help for Haiti Updates

Haiti is still devastated from disasters and political unrest. Help for Haiti currently houses children who would otherwise live in tent city, and pays their school tuition. The expenses continue to rise, but we trust that by God’s grace this ministry is making a difference one life at a time.

At the end of June, Leferne took a trip to fix up the home for the children being cared for.

Help for Haiti Children’s Shelter expenses for the month of September 2022, 

Food, Water, Milk, Soap for laundry, transportation, barber, and other items such as cleaning supplies, toothpaste, toiletries, utility, barber, and candles $1,300.00

salary for employees $850.00

school transportation $75.00

school snacks/lunch $300.00

internet service $41.00

$6,865.00 for school tuition – The three students that had scholarship last year did not get it this year.

Technology and sport fees for 8 students for academic year 2022-2023.  

Grand total is $9,431.00 

May God bless you all! Yours, Leferne Preptit

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

The yard sale is coming! 

Things are beginning to perk at First. There are plans for the yard sale.  We will be voting on a new form of leadership at the next Administrative meeting.  If approved, getting decisions made and working in different areas as needed will be facilitated.  Soon we hope to be set up for giving through our web page.  There is an active Sunday school.  

 Faith and the Arts along with the Worship Committee have met and made some plans for enhancing your worship.  

Yes, we are busy. What do you want to do at FirstUMC?  Come find your spot.


Serve with Sunday Worship

What is God calling you to do? What ministries bring you joy?

First UMC is adding volunteers to serve once a month on a rotation for:

  • Liturgist– read the Sunday Announcements, Responsive Reading, or other speaking opportunities
  • Sunday Greeters– Welcome people to the building, and to the worship space. Weekly or monthly rotation as needed.
  • Sunday Ushers– Assist people before and after worship with seating and questions. Gather and bring forward the offerings to God. Weekly or monthly rotation as needed.
  • Videographer– It’s easier than it sounds! If you’re not familiar with Facebook Live, Pastor Casey or another leader will have the account open for you– just click “Go Live” and rotate the tripod if we need a different camera angle
  • Attendance Cards– Set out and collect the cards or pew pads each week, and record who attends. Tracking online attendees is an added plus if you know how!
  • Administrative TasksChoose one or several areas to serve– proofread the bulletin, check the church voicemail, run DVD and newsletter copies weekly for shut ins, address church mailers.
  • Gardening and Weeding– You choose your schedule to maintain a beautiful and inviting environment at our building.

Reply here via email or check with Pastor Casey for more opportunities to use your gifts in God’s Kingdom.

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

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

Calendar of Events

August 25-31, 2022


9:30 a.m. Sunday School

11:00 a.m. Morning Worship –  We are following the CDC Guidelines for in person gatherings – we will publish the recommended precautions each week in this newsletter and on our facebook page.  

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

7:00 p.m. AA Meetings


7:00 p.m. AA Meetings


7:00 p.m. AA Meetings

August 27

11:00 a.m.- 7 p.m. – TriPride event at Cumberland Square Park

10 a.m.- 3 p.m. All District Youth are invited to spend the day at Camp Ahistadi! There will be camp songs and fellowship, Creek Stomping, Survival Skills Training, and a Hike. You may want to bring an extra change of clothes, water shoes, hiking shoes (tennis shoes are fine), etc. Lunch will be provided. We will leave Reynolds at 9:00 and return at 4:00 that day

August 28

12:15 p.m.   Administrative Council Meeting

September 7

5:00 p.m. – ?   Everyone able to lift and handle large and heavier pieces is invited to assist with moving yard sale items to Tankersley Hall. If you can set up tables, open boxes, and sort and organize smaller things, please come too! Pizza will be provided.

September 25

4:00 p.m. Trustees Meeting

First United Methodist Church
Rev. Casey Irwin, Pastor
322 Vance Dr., Bristol, TN 37620 423-652-2811

Our Vision – Building A Community Where Anyone Can Become A Deeply Committed Christian

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