Lent 2020: The “I Am” Sayings of Jesus

This year our Lenten theme will center on the seven “I AM” sayings of Jesus, a back-to-basics approach to bringing our focus to the life of Jesus — as the season of Lent calls us to do — from the vantage point of the Gospel of John.
The Gospel of John is different from the other three gospels, Matthew, Mark, and Luke, because it is much more reflective of the early church’s understanding of who Jesus is than the collected teachings of Jesus we find in the other three.
Unlike in the other three gospels, Jesus doesn’t ask the question, “Who do you say that I am” in the Gospel of John. There is no birth narrative, no Holy Communion, no Last Supper. Rather than a biography or collection of teachings, what we find in the Gospel of John is more of a cosmic view of Jesus and the meaning of his life, written so that we may believe that Jesus is the true son of God: “But these things are written so that you will believe that Jesus is the Christ, God’s Son, and that believing, you will have life in his name.” (John 20:31)
In the Gospel of John, Jesus uses seven images to describe who he is in a larger sense:
I am The Bread of Life
I am The Light of the World
I am The Gate
I am The Good Shepherd
I am The Way, the Truth, and the Life
I am The True Vine
I am The Resurrection and the Life
Each of these self-determinations carries with it a different facet of what is most important to Jesus about his mission and ministry on earth. These are concrete images — yet also metaphorical. They are not abstract pictograms, but the primary symbols of our faith.
Join us at FUMCFW this Season of Lent to discover a deeper understanding of this timeless topic — and the relevance of these “I AM” sayings to our day-to-day life.


Gathering to focus on God together

Sunday Worship

Sanctuary Service
9:30 & 11:00 am | Sanctuary | Dr. Tim Bruster

Sunday, March 1

“The Bread of Life”
John 6:48-51

Sunday, March 8

“The Light of the World”
John 8:12

Sunday, March 15

“The Gate”
John 10:2-10

Sunday, March 22

“The Good Shepherd”
John 10:11-18

Sunday, March 29

“The Way, the Truth, and the Life”
John 14:1-7

Sunday, April 5

“The True Vine”
John 15:1-5

Other Sunday Worship Offerings


Community Breakfast
7:15 am | Wesley Hall
8:30 am | Chapel

The Gathering

9:30 & 11:00 am
Wesley Hall
Rev. Lance Marshall


11:11 am
512 W. 4th St.
Rev. Tom McDermot

Chapel Communion

10:35 am
Dr. Len Delony

Easter Sunday Sanctuary Service

Sunday, April 12

8:00, 9:30, & 11:00 am | Sanctuary | Dr. Tim Bruster
“The Resurrection and the Life”
John 11:20-27

On this, the most joyous day of the Christian year, Dr. Tim Bruster, Senior Pastor, will culminate his I Am sermon series with “The Resurrection and the Life,” a message of joy, hope, and celebration of the Resurrection of Jesus and what it means to be “Resurrection People” in today’s world.

Special music will be presented by Choral Union, DFW Brass, and Organist Peggy Graff in all three services. Under the direction of Robert Stovall, FUMCFW Director of Music and Worship Arts, special music this year will include Rimsky-Korsakov’s “Glory,” “Hallelujah” from The Mount of Olives by Ludwig van Beethoven, and Dan Forrest’s “Risen Today!”

Through soul-stirring special music, a thought-provoking message, and singing our favorite Easter hymns together, we’ll share this deeply meaningful service of worship celebrating the glory of Easter and God’s love and infinite grace.

Other Easter Sunday Worship Offerings


Community Breakfast
7:15 am | 512 W. 4th St.
8:30 am | Chapel
Dr. Bill Longsworth

The Gathering

8:00, 9:30 & 11:00 am
Wesley Hall
Rev. Lance Marshall


11:11 am
512 W. 4th St.
Rev. Tom McDermot

Easter Sunday Parking

800 West 5th St.
Fort Worth, TX 76102

We are located in the heart of downtown Fort Worth at 800 West 5th Street. All of the parking lots surrounding the church are available for parking on Easter Sunday — please refer to the map for exact locations.

Complimentary Valet Parking Assistance is available on Easter Sunday between 7:40 am and 12:30 pm for members or visitors who need to save a few extra steps in reaching the Sanctuary, Wesley Hall, and the Main Building. To access this service, please enter from 7th Street and proceed through the Main Lot to the 5th Street ramp near the Garden area. This service is provided by TCU Rent A Frog; tipping is optional.


Ash Wednesday Worship

Ash Wednesday Services

Wednesday, February 26
Noon and 7:00 pm | Sanctuary
Dr. Zhenya Gurina-Rodriguez

Ash Wednesday sets the tone for the entire season of Lent, a time to become closer to God. We receive ashes on this day as a sign of repentance, to say we are sorry for things we have done. Ashes are also very dry and remind us that our earthly lives have a beginning and an end. Lent is the 40 days before Easter (not counting Sundays). It is the same number of days Jesus spent in the wilderness.

Family Ash Wednesday Dinner and Service

Wednesday, February 26
5:30 pm | Dinner | Rooms 333 & 334
6:15 pm | Worship | Wesley Hall
“Why Do We Get Ashes On Our Heads?”

Children will gather for dinner (donations are accepted but not required) followed by a special kid-friendly service in which we will sing songs, participate in many different forms of prayer, and receive the imposition of ashes as we learn about Ash Wednesday and its significance.

Holy Week Worship

Maundy Thursday

Family Maundy Thursday Dinner and Service

Thursday, April 9
5:30 pm | Dinner | Rooms 333 & 334
6:15 pm | Worship | Chapel
“What Does Maundy Mean?”

In this unique Maundy Thursday service for children, kids will experience a foot-washing ritual, receive Communion, and hear the Bible story as they walk with Jesus on his final night. Donations for dinner are accepted but not required.

Living Last Supper: A Maundy Thursday Experience

Thursday, April 9
7:00 – 8:00 pm | Sanctuary

FUMCFW Theatre Arts presents a live depiction of Leonardo Da Vinci’s painting, “The Last Supper,” which represents the scene of the Last Supper with Jesus and his twelve disciples, portrayed by actors. Communion will be served by the disciples to all who attend.

Good Friday

Family Good Friday Dinner and Service

Friday, April 10
5:30 pm | Dinner | Rooms 333 & 334
6:15 pm | Worship | Wesley Hall
“Why Do We Call It Good Friday? It Doesn’t Sound Very Good to Me.”

In this very thoughtful Good Friday children’s service, we encourage families to experience together one of the most important, yet challenging, stories of our faith. Offering this story in child-appropriate ways, through scripture and shadow theatre, this service presents the story of Jesus’ final day. Children will receive prayer cords, and families will sing and pray together in this powerful yet peaceful evening service. Donations for dinner are accepted but not required.

Good Friday Service: Jesus’ Journey to the Cross Featuring Adoramus Chamber Choir and FUMCFW Theatre Arts Ensemble

Friday, April 10
7:00 pm – 8:00 pm | Sanctuary

During this special Good Friday service of darkness we will remember Jesus’ journey to the cross and the hours leading up to his crucifixion through readings, scripture, prayer, and singing of hymns. Adoramus Chamber Choir will present beautiful choral meditations on the last words of Christ, adapted from the ancient Tenebrae by composer Dale Wood; the service will also include the organ arrangement of “Come, Sweetest Death,” by J.S. Bach and Virgil Fox.


Being God’s people in the world

Lent Volunteers

Ash Wednesday | February 26 | Noon & 7:00 pm
Maundy Thursday |  April 9 | 7:00 pm
Good Friday | April 10 | 7:00 pm
Easter Sunday | April 12 | Ushers at 8:00, 9:30 & 11:00 am worship services
Parking lot greeters from 10:15 – 11:00 am | Registration required

Lent is just around the corner — and with that comes the PERFECT opportunity to be a part of one of the most meaningful times at FUMCFW. This is one of the busiest seasons of worship of the year in the life of our church, and we want to make sure everyone who steps onto our campus receives a friendly and hearty First Church welcome!

We hope you will join us for these wonderful opportunities to serve with our hospitality team on Ash Wednesday, Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, and of course, Easter Sunday.

We’ll need ushers and greeters, both inside the church and in our surrounding parking lots. Just plan to arrive 30 minutes before each service to join our Welcoming Ministries in extending a warm greeting to church members and guests as they arrive and settle into their seats, as well as providing assistance as needed at other points during the service.

Please register today to let us know we can count on your help, and we’ll contact you with further instructions.


Rise Against Hunger

Sunday, March 1
9:30 am – 1:00 pm | Justin Youth Building
Registration Required

All Hands On Deck—or in Food Handling Gloves!

Food insecurity happens for many reasons—drought, fires, floods, or government instability.

We can do something to help.  

On March 1 FUMCFW will host our 8th annual Rise Against Hunger food packaging event in the Justin Building.  With 120 volunteers we can package more than 20,000 meal kits to send to a hungry community.

First Church members and guests of all ages can help pack bags of rice and beans, making this a great project for parents and children and our whole church family!

Click here for your chance to sign up for this all church project beginning at 9:30 that morning.


Blessing Families at Ronald McDonald House

Saturday, March 21, 2020
10:00 am – 2:00 pm | Ronald McDonald House | 1001 8th Ave
Registration</ requiredh5>
Please join us during the Lenten season on Saturday, March 21 from 10:00 am – 2:00 pm to bless the children and families staying at the local Ronald McDonald House with our love and support!

They say the best way to warm the heart is through the stomach, so together, we’ll prepare baked goods through their new program, Baking Buddies. We will prepare individually sized and wrapped baked goods to put in the RMH Baked Goods Basket or take over to the hospital’s Family Room. You will receive more joy baking together and serving these families than you can ever imagine!

Something to keep in mind and in your calendars: we will also plan to prepare dinner on Saturday, June 13 and lunch on Saturday, September 12 and further help these families throughout the year.

Questions & Registration: Allison McMahon |


Enjoying the good life God gives

Sight & Sound Theatres Presents “Jesus”

Tuesday, April 7
5:00 pm – 8:30 pm | Ridgmar 13 and XD
2300 Green Oaks Road | $12

Sights & Sounds Theatres presents, Jesus, at Ridgmar Movie Theater. Filmed in front of a live audience. Sight & Sound’s spectacular original stage production is now coming to the big screen – nationwide! Witness some of the most awe-inspiring, miraculous events as Jesus sets sail with fishermen, changes the Pharisees, and heals the hurting. Experience the greatest rescue story of all time as the Bible comes to life in movie theaters for this special Easter event.

We will meet at Olive Garden for dinner at 5:00 pm located at 925 Alta Mere Dr. Ridgmar Town Center, 76116. Then we will go to the movie theater together at 6:15 PM at Ridgmar 13 and XD. We can’t wait to see you there!

Contact: Michaela Lidecker |

Easter Egg Hunt 2020

Saturday, April 11
10:00 am – 1:00 pm | Lyle Lodge
7179 Peden Road | Azle, Texas 76020

Enjoy a petting zoo, face painting, a butterfly release — and more! Complimentary sliders, tacos, and pizza will be available from food trucks. In case of inclement weather, please check for more information.

Contact: Mary Katri | | 817-339-5096


Discovering and understanding who God is

Wednesday Morning Lenten Study: “The God We Can Know”

Wednesdays, February 26 – April 8
9:30 am – 11:00 am | Room 334 | Led by Rev. Phyllis Barren
Registration Required | Book available $10

Getting to know God means getting to know ourselves — and the more we know who God is, the more we can truly know ourselves.

This study is designed to aid in our exploration of the “I am” sayings of Jesus found in the Gospel of John, our Lenten theme this season,

The God We Can Know, Exploring the “I AM” Sayings by Rob Fuquay will guide our series as we all try to find and form an answer to the most essential question in the Christian faith, “Who do you say I am?”

One by one, the seven “I am” statements from Jesus grab our imagination, reveal more about his identity and purpose, and connect us further to God. Books are available in the church office during the week and in the Welcome Center on Sunday mornings.

Monday Musers Lent Study: “The Walk: Five Essential Practices of the Christian Life”

Mondays, March 2 – April 6
1:00 – 2:15 pm | Room 154 for first five sessions & Room 271 for final session
Registration Required | Book available for $15
Led by Dr. Mike Marshall

How do we walk with Christ – follow him, grow in him, and faithfully serve him?  In each chapter of The Walk, author Rev. Adam Hamilton’s engaging teaching style will help us explore each of these practices rooted in Jesus’ own walk with God), its New Testament foundation, and its potential effect on our personal lives and our lives together as the church.  We hope you will join us for this Lenten walk together! Books are available in the main church office.

Lunchtime Learning with Linda: “Educated” by Tara Westover

Thursday, March 5
11:45 am – 1:10 pm | Room 310 | Registration Required

Join Rev. Linda McDermott on a Lenten book study of Tara Westover’s memoir, Educated. With the acute insight that distinguishes all great writers, Tara Westover has crafted a universal coming-of-age story that gets to the heart of what an education offers: the perspective to see one’s life through new eyes, and the will to change it. Westover crafts an unforgettable memoir about a young girl who, kept out of school, leaves her survivalist family and goes on to earn a Ph.D. from Cambridge University. This important memoir will explore themes of indoctrination, empowerment, and overcoming obstacles all the while connecting the reader to the universal question: “How much of ourselves should we give to those we love?” Join us during your lunch hour, bring your lunch, and let’s get “Educated.”

Lunchtime Learning with Linda: “Unfollow” by Megan Phelps-Roper

Thursday, March 26
11:45 am – 1:15 pm | Room 310 | Registration Required

Join Rev. Linda McDermott for a Lenten book study of Unfollow, covering themes of extremism, indoctrination, black and white thinking, and liberation. At the age of five, Megan Phelps-Roper began protesting homosexuality and other alleged vices alongside fellow members of the Westboro Baptist Church in Topeka, Kansas. A gripping memoir of escaping extremism and falling in love, Unfollow relates Phelps-Roper’s moral awakening, her departure from the church, and how she exchanged the absolutes she grew up with for new forms of warmth and community. Rich with suspense and thoughtful reflection, Phelps-Roper’s life story exposes the dangers of black-and-white thinking and the need for true humility in a time of angry polarization.

Register: Gayle Ammerman |



Talking and listening to God’s direction

Honor Loved Ones at Easter

February 26 – April 3, 2020
Individual Lilies Available

Here at First Church, among the many time-honored traditions we cherish is providing our Sanctuary Easter lilies in memory or honor of a special someone for Easter Sunday worship. We are offering this to individuals, families or Sunday school groups this year, for the first time in a long time. We invite all First Church members to consider becoming part of this sweet tradition. If your family, group, Sunday school class, or UMW Circle would like to underwrite all or part of this year’s Easter lily purchase for Easter Sunday Sanctuary Worship, The Gathering, Disciple Church, or eleven:eleven, please contact Rhonda Gaber ( at 817-339-5062 by Friday, April 3 or fill out the form below to order individual lilies.
learn more

Maundy Thursday Labyrinth Prayer Walk

Thursday, April 9 | 12:00 – 6:00 pm
Wesley Hall | no registration required

The Labyrinth is an ancient prayer path where you can become more intentional about taking on “the mind of Christ.” (1 Corinthians 2:16). Our Labyrinth is modeled on the pattern in Chartres Cathedral from the early 1200s. The open Labyrinth marks a sacred space to quietly and prayerfully follow the “pilgrim’s path” while being open to God’s Presence and guidance.
All are welcome to spend time in Labyrinth prayer on Maundy Thursday during Holy Week, in the contemplative days leading up to Easter Sunday.

Someone will be there to greet you in Wesley Hall and, and if you are new to the Labyrinth, there will be plenty of information, assistance, and guidance to help you get started.

Add to your Maundy Thursday worship experience by walking the Labyrinth before the evening services in the Sanctuary or Chapel (families with children are always welcome)!

It generally takes 15 minutes to walk the Labyrinth, but you are welcome to pray there in its center for whatever length of time you feel your soul needs as we approach the climax of the Lenten journey.


Putting God first in all things

Easter Offering

Help us support our church ministries and local community with our Easter Offering. Give online (choose Easter Offering from the drop-down menu) or with a check or donation envelope marked “Easter Offering” in the Sunday offertory, by mail, or in the Main Office.

Give Read a letter from Dr. Tim Bruster & Rev. Lance Marshall


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