Dear Members and Friends of First Church,
Our Advent worship theme this year is “We Have Gifts to Open” and we invite you to reflect on the true gifts of the season — the ones that can be easy to miss among the shiny packages under our own Christmas trees, but are nevertheless right there for us to open.
One of the most important of these special gifts of the Advent season is the gift of joy we receive when we share our blessings with others. As we contemplate the gifts we — and our loved ones — will open this Christmas, let’s be especially intentional in considering how we can help meet the needs of others through our financial gifts to our annual Christmas Offering.
This year our Christmas Offering supports vital funding for some of our outreach ministries:
- Kids Hope USA, providing mentors to some of the at-risk children at T.A. Sims Elementary School and giving one hour each week to a child in need of a relationship with a caring adult.
- Infant Formula Program, providing formula and, when available, diapers and clothing to parents and caretakers of infants who are 12 months of age and younger, two times each month.
- Methodist Justice Ministry, working to obtain legal protections through court orders for abused women and abused, neglected, and/or at-risk children.
- Food 4 Kids, supplying 100 children from I.M. Terrell Elementary School with shelf-stable food items each week so that they have food to eat over the weekend.
- Kenya Orphan Endeavor, supporting 250 orphans and vulnerable children with school uniforms and tuition support.
- Costa Rica Ministry, serving children and families in rural Costa Rica for the past 10 years to help build a regional Children’s Worship Center, medical clinic, library, computer lab, and soccer field.
- Providence Place (Formerly Methodist Mission Home), helping young adults with disabilities achieve life/work skills, offers a wide range of adoption options for families, with assistance for expectant mothers considering adoption, and welcomes those on the fringe of our community.
- Women & Children’s Interim Housing at Presbyterian Night Shelter, expanding the capacity and support services for women with children to end homelessness.
- Methodist Children’s Home in Waco, Texas, providing services to more than 1,400 children and youth daily though residential, foster care, and other services, offering hope to children, youth, and families through a nurturing, Christian community and a variety of family services.
- The World Service Fund, which is the primary avenue of support for the global mission and ministry of The United Methodist Church, connecting our church to a long list of Christian mission and ministry around the globe.
This year we’re hoping to meet our goal of raising $100,000 in order to meet these significant needs, right here in Fort Worth and around the world. Please make your prayerful gift with a check or donation envelope marked “Christmas Offering” in the Sunday offering, by mail or in the Main Office, or online.
I hope you’ll join us for our Advent worship series in which we will consider together the many gifts God gives us in the coming of the Christ Child. Thank you for your love, generosity, and concern for others.
Grace and Peace,
Dr. Tim Bruster, Senior Pastor