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Traditional Worship | 9:30 & 11:00 am | Sanctuary | Dr. Tim Bruster
DiscipleChurch | Community Breakfast | 7:20 am | Wesley Hall
Chapel | 8:30 am | Martin Leathers
Discussion Groups | 9:30 am
Chapel Communion | 10:35 am | Chapel | Dr. Len Delony
Special Music: Dace Sultanov, cello
11:11 am | Wesley Hall | Rev. Tom McDermott
First 7th | Worship | 5:30 pm | Wesley Hall | Rev. Lance Marshall
Social Hangout at Oliver’s | 6:30 pm | 415 Throckmorton Street
He Called Me Brother
Dr. Tim Bruster
First, I want to express my deep appreciation for the renewal leave I was able to experience this summer. Sometimes things do not go as we plan, but they end up being what we need. As most of you know by now, Susan’s mother died at the beginning of the summer and about the same time my brother Mike was diagnosed with a very serious illness for which he is receiving very difficult treatments. My leave allowed Susan and me to be with her father in Arkansas to help with cleaning out, packing, preparing the house to sell, helping with the move to an independent living facility, and all the other important family duties. It allowed me to spend much more time with my brother than I would have otherwise been able to do. For that and for all your cards, emails, and prayers, Susan and I are grateful.
Second, I am grateful for the clergy and staff of the church who have worked hard in my absence and have blessed this congregation in their preaching, their programming, their leadership, their administration, and their pastoral care.
Finally, I am grateful to be back with you and look forward to this fall. Sunday I begin a series that will take us through some of the life and the major passages of the Apostle Paul. Paul stands tall among the figures who have had a great impact on the beliefs and practices of Christianity. Paul was a controversial figure in his time — and he remains a controversial figure for many people today. At first a zealous persecutor of the early Christians — then called “People Belonging to the Way” — he had a dramatic experience of the Risen Christ and turned his zeal to proclaiming the Good News in all the places he could. Just scan some of the titles of books written during the past decade or so about this tireless “Apostle to the Gentiles” and you can get a sense of how controversial he still is and how varied are the notions of who he was and what his message was:
From Persecutor to Apostle: A Biography of Paul
What Saint Paul Really Said: Was Paul of Tarsus the Real Founder of Christianity?
Paul and Jesus: How the Apostle Transformed Christianity
The Apostle Paul: Understanding the Many Misunderstandings of the Apostle Paul’s Stance on the Law and Gospel
Paul Apostle of the Heart Set Free
The Paul Debate: Critical Questions for Understanding the Apostle
Four Views on the Apostle Paul
St. Paul: The Apostle We Love to Hate
Paul: A Radical Apostle?
Apostle Paul: Antichrist
Paul, The Apostle of Grace: The Man to Whom Christ Gave the Final Gospel
The Apostle Paul and Women in the Church
Who Made Early Christianity?: The Jewish Lives of the Apostle Paul
In Search of Paul
Paul: The Odd Apostle
Paul Was Not a Christian: The Original Message of a Misunderstood Apostle
And, there’s even this: The Journeys of Paul Board Game
During the fall we’ll spend some time with this intriguing leader and let him speak to us today. We begin with the account in Acts 9:1-20 of Paul’s dramatic encounter on the road to Damascus and the life-changing experience that followed.
I look forward to this journey with you in our sanctuary worship.
Grace and Peace,
Every Sunday morning, groups of adults meet in FUMCFW Sunday School Classes to enhance their spiritual growth and enjoy fellowship with other Christians. We have classes for a variety of demographic groups, with many different class personalities and styles. Visit the Adult Sunday School page to learn more!
Throughout each week, our FUMCFW bloggers (staff, lay leaders and others wanting to share thoughts and information related to First Church programs, events, and activities) write on a variety of topics. And, while you can always find the latest posts on our blogs link at the top of every page, we also send each week’s collection out each Friday under the Who’s Blogging This Week subject line.
Faith In Action: New Beginnings
We’ve had our school supply drive, the children are now back in school, and now it’s back-to-Academy time with Mister Mark and our Children’s Ministries volunteers geared up to launch our Fall Academy this Sunday, September 13. I know I’m looking forward to all the excitement in the air this week as our new slate of Children’s Academy classes begins — and this year, this special time of new beginnings comes with a little bit of extra dust, too, as construction to expand the children’s area also kicks off this week. With our Library’s move to its snazzy and easier-to-access new location across from Wesley Hall now complete, contractors have begun work on two new classrooms, a flexible learning space, an ADA accessible children’s restroom, and a parent waiting area. And, just as this new beginning embraces such an exciting time of growth in our Children’s Ministries and programs, ongoing financial support for our Children’s Wing Expansion now includes more and more people who want to be part of funding this exciting project. As construction progresses, I’ll be updating you with where we are on the total project, along with some special furnishing opportunities to help equip this space to be all it can be to embrace children AND their parents on Sunday mornings. Thank you for the support you’ve already provided for our Children’s Wing Expansion — your gifts make you part of our growing reputation among hundreds of Fort Worth families as “The Church for Children.”
Roger Partridge, Director of Stewardship
Welcoming Ministries Survey
You’ve heard from me for the past few weeks about what I think it means to be welcoming. Now it’s your turn! Please complete the SHORT, anonymous survey below (Just three easy questions!) to let me know your thoughts as we move forward in developing our comprehensive new Welcoming Ministries. If you’d rather not take this survey online, please feel free to contact me (firstname.lastname@example.org) at 817/339-2403 and I’ll be glad to share your thoughts. Click here to complete the survey online.
I look forward to hearing from you!
Lisa Helm is the Director of Welcoming Ministries, a new ministry devoted to making sure all who enter our campus feel welcome, safe, and cared for by our Church — on Sundays and beyond!
Meals On Wheels, Inc. of Tarrant County
Thanks UMW for 40 Years of Service!
In 1972, FUMCFW and ten other downtown faith-based organizations met to address hunger in the central city and formed the Association of Central City Ministries (ACCM). From this, Meals On Wheels of Tarrant County was launched to provide meals to the elderly solely with volunteer help.
Meals on Wheels, Inc. of Tarrant County now has a volunteer force of over 5,000 who deliver meals, as well as blankets, fans, supplemental groceries, medical equipment, pet food, and other essential items to nearly 4,600 people in neighborhoods throughout Tarrant County.
Since 1975 the United Methodist Women (UMW) Chapter of FUMCFW has delivered meals and more importantly concern, love, and compassion to elderly and disabled homebound residents. Recently Meals On Wheels, Inc. of Tarrant County awarded UMW a plaque honoring their forty years of service and placed a brick in their honor on the pathway leading to the entrance of the new Meals on Wheels facility.
A heartfelt thank you to all the ladies of UMW for the generous gift of time they give and the difference it makes in the lives of those they serve.
Outdoor Ministry Celebration
Last week our church got a glimpse of how much fun it is to go to an FUMCFW Outdoor Ministry retreat. The transformation of Fifth Street with campers and tents, as well as the delicious camping cuisine was truly a Labor Day highlight! Click here to see more photos from the Outdoor Ministry Celebration. If you are interested in joining in on the fun, go to fumcfw.org/outdoor or contact Rev. Chuck Graff (email@example.com) at 817/339-5065.
9.12 Blessing Ronald McDonald House of Fort Worth Families
4:00 – 7:00 pm | Ronald McDonald House
1004 7th Ave, Fort Worth, TX 76104
On Saturday, September 12, our Lay Ministry Committee invites everyone 15 years of age and older to come with us to the Ronald McDonald House of Fort Worth, to provide a hot meal for families to help them rest and recharge, and to support them through the “Meals from the Heart” program. We will begin cooking supper for the families at 4:00 pm, and serve the families from 6:00 – 7:00 pm. What a blessing it will be for you to serve and meet these wonderful families! Please contact Allison McMahon (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Sammye Dunn (email@example.com) for more details.
9.13 Kids Hope USA in the Garden
10:00 am – Noon | FUMCFW Garden
The focus of Kids Hope USA is to build caring relationships; one child, one hour, one church, one school at a time. The need is great, the opportunity is vast and YOU could be the one to make all the difference for a child. To learn more about this vital mentoring program for the students at T.A. Sims Elementary School come by the Garden on Sunday, September 13 or contact Gay Ingram (firstname.lastname@example.org) at 817/999-8075.
Stop Hunger Now
Sunday, September 20
9:30 am – 12:30 pm | Justin Building | 801 W. 5th Street
Click here to sign up!
Join this collaborative effort of FUMCFW Youth, Children, and Compassion & Justice Ministries as they partner with Stop Hunger Now, a national meal-packaging program whose goal is to end hunger by providing food and lifesaving aid to those people who are most vulnerable. Our goal is to package 20,000 meals! For more information, contact Elizabeth Becker (email@example.com) at 817/339-5068.
Have some exciting news about an FUMCFW member that you would like to share? This section of the E-news is the perfect place to do just that! Please send your information to Caroline Petty (firstname.lastname@example.org) and we will include your story!
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Register for Fall Adult Studies
Classes begin September 13
Click here to register online OR Register in the Main Office
Weekdays | 9:00 am – 5:00 pm OR Sundays | Between Services
Welcome fall by joining our new slate of studies and learning opportunities with something for everyone!
9.13 – 10.14 Living Through Grief Support Group
Sundays | 9:30 am
Foundation Building, 2nd Floor
Led by Charme Robarts, certified Grief Recovery Specialist and Community Advocate, this group is focused on providing participants with tools and basic understanding of ways to handle grief that are healthy and lead to healing. Opportunity is given for sharing personal concerns. Participation is free and you do not need to be a church member to participate. Optional guidebook is $5. For more information or to register, contact Marianne Wilson (email@example.com) at 817/339-5071.
Financial Peace University
September 13 – November 8 (9 Weeks)
Sundays | 9:30 – 10:45 am | Foundation Building, Room 274
Led by Roger Partridge, Director of Stewardship
$109 for Materials (Includes Workbooks & CDs)
Registration Required | Scholarships Available
Through the 9 weeks of Financial Peace University, you’ll learn how to write a budget, create an emergency fund, and get out of debt along with creating retirement and college saving plans. Click here to learn more and register for this and other fall studies!
New Sunday School Class: Parents of Teenagers
Starting 9.13 | 9:45 – 10:45 am | Justin Youth Building | Room 306
We’re launching a brand new Sunday school class JUST for parents of teenagers (more accurately: 6th – 12th graders). As people of faith, it is important that we model the same disciplines of faith that we hope for our children. So together, we will be nurtured as disciples while journeying with others who share the same joys and challenges of raising a teenager. Class Leaders Chris and Tami Vardy, parents of two teenagers themselves, are both also small group leaders for the youth with extensive experience as youth ministries volunteers. Chris also serves as chair of the Youth Ministries Council, and Tami has completed doctoral studies in Educational Administration and Leadership. The ongoing discussions will span both youth and confirmation content to help equip parents for faith conversations with their teens, guided topical book studies, and opportunities to share experience, wisdom, and inspiration while raising teens in our current cultural climate. Please contact Rev. Casey Orr (firstname.lastname@example.org) with questions or to receive more information.
Improv 1st! Everything’s an Offering
September 13 – November 1 (8 Weeks)
Sundays | 1:00 – 3:00 pm | Foundation Building, Room 370
Led by Rev. Tom McDermott & Guest Instructors
Improvisation in life, as in theater and comedy, is a way of responding to life’s ups and downs with humor, playfulness, and most importantly, “openness to the moment.” Through improv training we learn to be: more present to one another, more relaxed in the face of life’s (and work’s) surprises, more creative in all our endeavors, less judgmental, and discover the joy in “free play.” This class will teach basic improv techniques, character development, and scene work. Facilitators are Rev. Tom McDermott, Chuck Shanlever, Winn LaRue (graduate of the four year Four Day Weekend School and member of two area comedy teams), and other guest instructors. There is no cost, though we will use several resources individuals may want to purchase. Click here to learn more and register for this and other fall studies!
Book Study: Seeing Gray in a World of Black and White
September 16 – October 14 (5 Weeks)
Wednesdays | 9:30 – 11:00 am | Room 154
Led by Rev. Phyllis McDougal
Book Available for $15 | Registration Required
Everyone agrees that America is polarized, with ever-hardening positions held by people less and less willing to listen to one another. No one agrees on what to do about it. Adam Hamilton rejects the easy assumptions and sloppy analysis of black and white thinking, seeking instead the truth that resides on all sides of the issues, and offering a faithful and compassionate way forward. He writes, “I don’t expect you to agree with everything I’ve written. I expect that in the future even I won’t agree with everything I’ve written here. The point is not to get you to agree with me, but to encourage you to think about what you believe. We will use Hamilton’s book, Seeing Gray in a World of Black and White: Thoughts on Religion, Morality, and Politics as a resource. Click here to learn more and register for this and other fall studies!
Pastor’s Bible Study
September 16 – May 15 (37 Weeks excluding holidays TBA)
Wednesdays | 6:30 – 7:30 pm | Room 231
Led by Rev. Lance Marshall
This offering is an open Bible study, with no purchase or registration necessary. Our focus of study will be on the sermon text for the upcoming Sunday evening worship service led by Rev. Lance Marshall. It is offered to those who have never opened the Bible in their lives, to those who study on a regular basis. Childcare is not available for this class. Click here to learn more and register for this and other fall studies!
September 17 – December 10 | Thursdays | Refreshments & Gathering
9:15 – 9:30 am | Class | 9:30 – 11:00 am
Room 350 | Led by Rev. Linda McDermott | Registration Required
Thursday Theologians is a welcoming group interested in open minded and challenging discussions of theological topics. It is specifically designed for those who are eager to ask the more difficult questions about faith and to be challenged to explore personal beliefs. We will use the book, Convictions: How I Learned What Matters Most by Marcus J. Borg. Space is limited. Click here to learn more and register for this and other fall studies!
Rebuilding When Your Relationship Ends
September 22 – October 27 | Tuesdays | 6:00 – 7:30 pm
Foundation Building, 2nd Floor
Led by Rev. Phyllis McDougal
Divorce is one of the most difficult experiences that most people will ever face. Even the most amicable of divorces can create intense emotional and psychological issues which may have lasting effects if they are not given attention. The good news is that there is help for facing the challenges that divorce brings. This six-week series will use the book Rebuilding When Your Relationship Ends, featuring divorce process rebuilding blocks, a proven 19-step process for putting one’s life back together after divorce. This widely-used approach to divorce recovery makes the process healthier and less traumatic for those who are going through a divorce. The focus will be on gaining insights into facing the experience of divorce, and offering time for participants to process their current experience in a supportive setting. Rev. Phyllis McDougal is an ordained United Methodist minister who also holds a Masters in Psychology and is an LPC-I. This series is free and open to members and non-members of FUMCFW. For participants who would like a copy of the book, it will be available for $15 in the church office in advance or at the first class. For more information contact Phyllis McDougal (email@example.com) at 817/339-5082. To register, contact Marianne Wilson (firstname.lastname@example.org) at 817/339-5071.
Fall Academy Registration Now Open
Fall Children’s Academy begins this Sunday, but it’s not too late to sign up! Register online at fumcfw.org/academy
Third Grade Bible Retreat & Presentation
Overnight Retreat | September 18 – 19 | Lyle Lodge | $25 per child
Presentation of Bibles | September 20 | 11:00 am | Sanctuary Worship Service
Third grade is a special year in Children’s Ministry as we celebrate the milestone of gifting children with their very own Bible! This three-day experience begins with an overnight retreat where children learn the importance of using the Bible as a tool in their everyday lives, and will culminate with the special presentation of Bibles that Sunday in the sanctuary. Click here to learn more and register your third grader!
9.17 North Texas Giving Day 2015
6:00 am – Midnight
Online at NorthTexasGivingDay.org
This year, First Street Methodist Mission AND Methodist Justice Ministry are taking part in North Texas Giving Day, Thursday, September 17, when every donation of $25 and above you make will be multiplied with bonus funds and prizes!
In addition, this year a special opportunity offered by generous donors will match your donation up to $5,000 for each organization!
Methodist Justice Ministry was founded in 2006, first to protect indigent women and children from domestic violence, neglect and abuse, and second, to help them to new lives free of violence, abuse, fear and self-loathing.
September Mission Sundays: Toilet Paper
During the month of September, please bring Toilet Paper to the First Street Methodist Mission, Monday – Thursday, 8:00 am – 4:00 pm or to the Welcome Center on Sunday Morning. For more information, contact Elizabeth Becker (email@example.com) at 817/339-5068. Small Gifts. Big Difference.
Food 4 Kids
September – May
Sundays | Pack backpacks for 1 hour between 9:00 am – Noon First Street Methodist Mission
Food 4 Kids is a ministry of First Street Methodist Mission that will send food home for the weekend for 100 students at I.M. Terrell Elementary and 50 students at T.A. Sims Elementary during the school year. Groups of 10 are encouraged to come to First Street Methodist Mission for one hour between 9:00 am and Noon, September through May.
To learn more, please contact Elizabeth Becker (firstname.lastname@example.org).
9.13 Youth Evening Events Begin
4:00 pm | Youth Choir | Choir Room, 2nd Floor
5:30 pm | Justin Building
Click here to see a complete list of Youth Events
9.13 Sixth Grade Confirmation Begins
Sundays | 9:15 – 10:45 am | Room 203 | Justin Building
Sixth grade is a really important year at FUMC Fort Worth because sixth grade means CONFIRMATION. It’s a special year set aside to learn about who God is, what United Methodist Christians believe, and what it means to be not only a member of a church, but also a disciple of Jesus in our world. Registration materials have been sent via email and snail mail to all addresses we have for parents of rising sixth graders. If you have not received this information and would like to, please contact Rev. Casey Orr at (email@example.com). We hope to see all parents and sixth graders at our orientation and information meeting on Sunday, August 30 at 9:30 am in Wesley Hall.
9.19 – 9.20 Middle School Lock-In
Saturday 6:00 pm – Sunday 11:00 am | Justin Building
$15 | Middle School Only
Click here to register and pay online now
Middle Schoolers ASSEMBLE! Come out for an incredibly fun filled evening in the Justin to hangout and relax after the busyness of the beginning of school. It’ll be a night filled with games, food, and worship. It’s your time to play and rule the Justin! The morning after we will help serve our community alongside of Stop Hunger Now. Don’t miss out!
Foundation Memorial Fund in Memory Of:
Frances Jeane Stuart by the Law Offices of Paup, Shutt and Associates
Judith Lokey by the Law Offices of Paup, Shutt and Associates
Daphne Motheral Jose by Nancy & Marc B. Smith, Jr.