Newsletter: March 30-April 5, 2023

First United Methodist Church of Bristol, Tennessee

Your Weekly e-Newsletter and Events Schedule

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 area as

GREEN (LOW) for COVID-19 transmission this week, so:
> Masks are optional for gathering in person – please respect the safety concerns of others. Masks will be available if you forget to bring your own.
> 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 5-8 PM

Wednesdays 5-8 PM

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.

Email Prayer Chain

If you are interested in being a part of the email prayer chain, please sign up as you exit the sanctuary or email Pastor Casey. The messages will be distributed through our email lists on Realm.

Worship This Week

April 2, 2023

Scriptures: John 12:12-26

Sermon: n…. Rev. Casey Irwin

Photo by Artem Beliaikin on

Serving This Month



4/9 Alan Gorrell



*Please make arrangements to trade with someone if you will be unable to serve in this way. Any emergency changes can be handled by those present at worship.

Last Sunday at First UMC

March 26, 2023

Fifth Sunday of Lent

Prelude: I Need Thee Every Hour by Robert Lowery; Phil Haga, organist

Hymn of Praise: 311—Now the Green Blade Riseth

First Scripture: Psalm 100

Second Scripture: Luke 11:1-14

Sermon: Two Types of Women by Jennifer Daniel

Hymn of Benediction: 383 — This is a Day of New Beginnings

Postlude: More Love to Thee, O Christ by Wm. Doane; Phil Haga, organist

Find the worship video and bulletin linked here:

Photo by Penny Hudson

Weather Reminder

As icy winter weather comes and goes, please use your best judgment for driving to the church in this season. We have the opportunity to worship virtually with Facebook and YouTube recordings, an online bulletin, or a DVD of worship can be requested from Pastor Casey.

Any cancellation of services will be shared no later than 10 AM on our website and Facebook.


 Memorials given to the Memorial Fund for Bill Olson by

Evon Olson

Erik Olson

Kathy and Larry Wagner

Memorial for Loetta Cornett

Kathy and Larry Wagner

Photo by Penny Hudson

Easter Chancel Choir

Exciting news!!!  After almost 3 years, we are restarting the Chancel Choir at FUMC.  Our current plans are to have the choir do its first music presentation on Easter Sunday April 9th.  We are keeping things simple musically and aiming to have one music presentation per month to begin with and growing from there.

Currently we have the following rehearsal dates planned.

March 19th

March 26th

April 2nd

Photos by Penny Hudson

We will rehearse in the Sanctuary immediately following our 11am service,  Rehearsals will last less than an hour.

At this time we are recruiting our past choir members and look forward to adding new ones.  

Our first presentation will be simple but a great way for us to start to rebuild our choir.  The plan is to add more choir music in our services as we grow.

We will also premier our new choir robes on Easter Sunday, which were purchased just before the COVID pandemic began.  Yes—we never got a chance to wear them!

So if you have a love of singing and want to join us, now is the opportunity we have all been waiting for.

We know things will be small to begin, but as we have all heard many, many times…the start of any journey begins with that first step.  Won’t you take that first step with us?

Musical blessings,

—- Phil

United Women in Faith

Our next meeting is April 11 at 5:30 pm

We will introduce our book study, so come ready to share and grow together.

Our stations of the Cross display in the Sanctuary. Photos by Penny Hudson

From the Pastor’s Pen

March 30, 2023

Palm Sunday is upon us, as we begin to close our Lenten disciplines, and open our lives to Jesus’ journey through Jerusalem. It’s time to walk towards the sacrifice and the resurrection, to be transformed into God’s best for us. This article peaked my interest as a great way of describing what’s ahead on Sunday. Join us this week as we wave palms and welcome Christ.

    What is Palm Sunday? By Rev. Ryan Dunn

This Sunday is called “Palm Sunday” (April 2 in 2023). The name comes from a story in the Bible in which Jesus entered the city of Jerusalem. Prior to this event, Jesus and his friends roamed the countryside teaching and performing miracles, gaining a lot of recognition. The people of Jerusalem were super-excited that Jesus was coming to their city to celebrate a big religious festival. In their excitement, the people grabbed palm branches to wave around and threw their cloaks before Jesus on the road. The whole scene might have looked something like an ancient tinkertape parade.

Today, we still commemorate Palm Sunday. It starts off a week of remembrance for Christians, often referred to as Holy Week. The week ends with the celebration of Easter, and throughout this week we mark the different events that led to Jesus’ Resurrection and Easter. This means that Palm Sunday is a kind of paradoxical celebration. At worship services, there is likely a festive atmosphere. I have been part of many services where children wave palm branches and parade around the worship space shouting “Hosanna!” The paradox is that we celebrate knowing full well what came next in the story, after Jesus’ triumphal entry: he was rejected, betrayed and crucified.

Just about everything in regards to Jesus was surprising. His teachings were surprising–sometimes in a refreshing way, often in a shocking way. His actions were surprising, evidenced in the people he often associated with. His entry into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday was surprising–because he rode in on a young donkey. The events of Holy Week remind us that we humans often don’t deal well with surprises, for the story Jesus turns from celebration on Palm Sunday to rejection and death the following Friday. Thankfully, we know today that there was one more surprise to the Jesus story: the surprise of the Resurrection, which we’ll celebrate on Easter Sunday. Easter is a reminder that though we may turn from God’s surprises, God’s love persists in an undeniable way. We can’t keep God from surprising us.

This Sunday is a celebration of wonder. We celebrate that God continues to surprise and are welcoming in the miracle to come: the miracle of Resurrection. I hope you’ll consider what surprises await you this Holy Week.

The original article is linked here.

Pastor Casey

Help for Haiti Donor Dinner and Auction


Sign up on Sundays, or email Pastor Casey to serve in one of the following ways:

Decorating – Friday, April 21 & Saturday, April 22

Event Servers Sunday, April 23, 4:30-6 pm

Event Greeters – Sunday, April 23, 4:30-5:30 pm

Clean-up Crew- Kitchen – Sunday, April 23, 6:30-8 pm
Clean-up Crew- Fellowship Hall – Sunday, April 23, 7-8 pm

Altar Flower Sign Up

Share the beauty of God’s creation as a gift to God and our congregation.

Select your date, and  list your name and any details about the flowers. Examples – “in loving memory of _____”, “in celebration of _____”— or it can simply be a gift to the glory of God. 

  • Cost $50 for a professional arrangement.
  • Label your check or envelope as designated to the altar flower fund, with the date you signed up for. 
  • Deadline for sign up and payment is the Sunday before.
  • You may take the flowers after Sunday service or we will distribute them as we are able. 

Photo by Penny Hudson

Contact Sue Bryngelson or the church office with any questions.

Last chance to help students!

Did you know that peppermint helps stimulate the brain?  

The Missions Committee is sponsoring a peppermint collection drive. We will give wrapped peppermint candy to Anderson, Middle and Tennessee High schools to show our support at an important time in the school year. Students receive a peppermint at every standardized test.

 Tissues are also needed for classrooms!

Please bring individually wrapped peppermint candy or boxes of tissues for the kids by Sunday, April 2nd. Want to help deliver? Just tell Pastor Casey or a Mission Committee member.

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

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

Giving to Ministries at First UMC

What can I give towards?

  • General Fund- monthly expenses for upkeep and ministries
  • Designated Gifts- towards a specific project or ministry
  • Missions Giving- to a specific mission or a general gift to be split among our mission partners

How often should I give?

  • Everyone manages their funds differently. Some give weekly when they attend worship. Other families give monthly when their income is deposited. Still others give at varying times to match a need or a project.

Our only request is that you prayerfully consider how God has called you to support the church and ministries with your fund. We challenge you to be good and faithful stewards of what is entrusted to you.

How can I give?

  • In person
    • Offering envelope booklets are available for you to take home. Each include 53 undated envelopes for weekly giving, or spread them out over time if you give on a different schedule. Please pick up yours from the rear of the sanctuary.
    • Offering envelopes have returned to the pews as well. If you forget yours, please take one for identifying your giving.
  • Digitally
    • ACH – contact us directly for a confidential form. This type of giving will automatically withdraw the amount your choose directly from your bank account
    • With online giving you can contribute from your checking account, or give with a debit or credit card. You also have the option to make your gift recurring.
      • Website: or any of the “Give Online” buttons
      • Text: from your cell phone, text FIRSTUMCBRISTOL to 73256. This will open up a link for you to choose how you give.

Calendar of Events

March 30-April 5, 2023


9:30 a.m. Sunday School

11:00 a.m. Morning Worship

7:00 p.m. AA Meetings


7:00 p.m. AA Meetings


7:00 p.m. AA Meetings

Sunday, April 2

12:00 p.m. Choir Rehearsal

Sunday, April 9

11:00 a.m. Easter Worship

Tuesday, April 11

5:30 p.m. United Women in Faith Meeting

Sunday, April 16

12:15 p.m. Administrative Board Meeting

4:00 p.m. Trustees Meeting

Sunday, April 23

5:00 p.m. Help for Haiti Donor Dinner and Auction

Saturday, April 29

10:00 a.m. Trustees Church Improvement Day

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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