WHY the Intensive Journal® Program may be right for you
Leading Men of FUMCFW Make New Music
Have a (Goal)ball!
Exciting New Projects at FUMCFW
General Conference: God’s People in the World
Churchwide General Conference Presentations
February Church Tour
Pre-Registration for Parents’ Day Out and Preschool
Baby Celebration Sunday
Traditional Worship | 9:30 & 11:00 am | Sanctuary | Dr. Tim Bruster
DiscipleChurch | Community Breakfast | 7:20 am | Wesley Hall
Chapel | 8:30 am | Davis Purcell
Discussion Groups | 9:30 am
Chapel Communion | 10:35 am | Chapel | Dr. Len Delony
eleven:eleven celebration | 11:11 am | Wesley Hall | Rev. Tom McDermott
First 7th | 5:30 pm | Wesley Hall | Rev. Lance Marshall
Dr. Tim Bruster
Luke 4:14-21 recounts how Jesus, at the beginning of his ministry, described his mission when he taught in his hometown synagogue in Nazareth. He taught in the customary way by standing up to read and sitting down to teach. Jesus stood up and took the scroll of the prophet Isaiah, and he read these words: “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to bring good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim release to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to let the oppressed go free, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.” Then he sat down. The text says that every eye was on him as he sat down and began to teach. He said, “Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.”
What Jesus was really doing that day was laying out his mission before them using the words of Isaiah. He was saying to the people in his hometown that his mission is to bring good news to the poor, to proclaim release to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to let the oppressed go free, and to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor. In other words, Jesus came for the poor, the captives, the blind, and the oppressed. Jesus came to bring the good news for those who were looking for hope. He came to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor — a powerful symbol for new beginnings, grace, and forgiveness, and for starting over through transformation and change.
As United Methodists we have passion for the most vulnerable members of our society. This is not a new passion and emphasis for Methodists. As Lovett Weems reminds us, “reform of the nation” was an early purpose of Methodism, along with “spreading scriptural holiness across the land.” John Wesley was clear, indeed blunt, on the unity of faith and action. Wesley said that there is “no holiness but social holiness.” We aren’t just individuals — we live in community and we are interconnected. As children of God, we are brothers and sisters.
John Wesley and the other early Methodists who experienced new life in Jesus Christ and started to follow him revised their own mission so that in every way they were able, they joined Jesus in bringing good news to the poor, in proclaiming release to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, in letting the oppressed go free, and in proclaiming the year of the Lord’s favor. There was a revolution in England, but a very different one from the bloody revolution across the English Channel — the French Revolution. There was education and labor reform, communities were strengthened, people began to live in hope, and significant social gaps were narrowed or in some cases closed. Lives were changed. People were saved — and healed in many senses of the word. Those early Methodists had a new mission, and we continue with that mission today.
I look forward to seeing you on Sunday as we gather to worship and depart to serve.
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!
Last Sunday the posters in our main hallway were updated to encourage your participation in our 2016 stewardship theme, “This Is Why I Give.” We’ve provided a marker with each poster, and there is plenty of space to leave your own personal thoughts on giving to our church. I loved reading the first week’s comments. One of the handwritten comments was “It is how we worship our God,” and another said “It is part of our faith.” It didn’t take these contributors long to think about why they give. I hope you will take a few moments to add your own reflection on giving as we move forward into our annual drive to fund our ministries and operating budget. Click here to continue reading.
“Does it always look this . . . blah?” It’s the same question I ask every year after the tree is down and all the bright shiny decorations that were adorning my house are gone. It just feels a little naked! Yes, it happens to me every year: Christmas withdrawal. It’s just kinda hard to come down after all that celebration and excitement!
Yesterday, after our staff recap meeting for Christmas Eve, I went upstairs to the third floor to put away some things and saw all of the candles, baskets, and holders that were used for the beautiful candlelit services, and the memory of that day and evening came flooding back. Click here continue reading.
Trustees Approve New Projects to Enhance Worship and Education
First United Methodist Church Trustees, at their first meeting of the new year, approved a series of projects designed to enhance the worship and education experience at the church.
Many of the projects have been on a wish list for several years and Trustees are now able to move forward. The projects are being funded by the First Methodist Church Foundation.
No more will several Sunday School classes have to struggle to bring audio-video equipment from the first floor library to the third floor when new A/V equipment is installed in five classrooms over the next several months. Click here to continue reading.
I really enjoyed getting to spend time with your kids yesterday in our Worship Arts class. We are preparing for a big Handmade Parade which will take place at our April Children First service.
We also continued our exploration of one of my favorite Bible stories — The Four Friends (Mark 2:1-12).
The next few weeks will have the same flow — Worship Arts with Me and The Gospel According to the Muppets with Rev. Nancy.
Spring Academy kicks off February 14. Click here to continue reading.
Dear Brothers and Sisters,
What are your gifts? How can you cultivate them? How can you use them for the common good? What do you have in you that comes from God?
Some of you may recall that over the last year I started learning and talking more about Paul. This Sunday in DiscipleChurch, Paul’s words in his first letter to the Corinthians are speaking to me, 1 Corinthians 12:1-11, which is also one of the lectionary passages. Click here to continue reading.
“No one is invisible” is the theme this January as community volunteers prepare to pour out across Tarrant and Parker counties to participate in the Point in Time Homeless Count (PIT Count) for Tarrant County Homeless Coalition. The PIT is an extensive, community-wide effort to find, count, and survey everyone who is experiencing homelessness at a particular point in time — this year, Thursday, January 28, 2016.
Tarrant County Homeless Coalition needs 500 volunteers to assist in the count. Here are some basics:
Rev. Tom McDermott
My grandfather, a local Fort Worth surgeon for nearly 40 years, once told me why he gave a lot of free medical care to the railroad companies (as well as others): “Be good to your neighbors. There will come a time when you will need them.”
I was 10 years old. I knew my grandparents lived in a fairly affluent neighborhood on the West Side. My grandmother was an opera singer and involved with the Fort Worth Opera Association. “Granddad,” I protested, “Those folks don’t live anywhere near you and Mi Mi.” I couldn’t imagine rail yard workers, or anyone with the railroad companies, having anything in common with my family or my relatives — no shared realities or similar possessions or education or lifestyle. Click here to continue reading.
WHY the Intensive Journal® Program may be right for you
The Intensive Journal Program opens the door to all kinds of new resources and possibilities.
Paul Bodley, FUMCFW Member and Staff Parish Relations Committee Lay Leader, had such a positive experience with the process that he decided to bring the workshop to our church. Paul said he believes the workshop will benefit anyone at any stage of life. “When I signed up for the Intensive Journal® Workshop led by Wally Chappell, I had no idea that a life-changing experience was about to take place,” he declared. “This is so much more than a class about journaling. It is about finding the insight and wisdom that lives (sometimes unknowingly) within us — and using a process to understand the flow of my life and where it might be taking me. Using what I’ve learned in the workshop has helped me work out issues, take action on my ideas, and enhance my relationship with God.”
Everyone has their own reasons to seek change in their lives. Use the Intensive Journal Program to help you reach your goals along the way. Click here for more details.
Intensive Journal® Two-Part Program
Fridays | 5:30 – 9:30 pm
Saturdays | 9:00 am – 12:00 pm, 1:00 – 4:00 pm, 4:30 – 6:30 pm
$145 each or $280 for both parts | Registration required
Led by Rev. Meredith Bell | Wesley Hall
Part 1: Life Context — Gaining a Perspective on Life
January 29 – 30
Part 2: Depth Contact — Symbolic Images and Meaning in Life
February 12 – 13
Prerequisite: Life Context (Part 1)
As 2016 begins, this is a great time to make your New Year’s resolutions. How about building your self-esteem? Making better decisions? Embracing your creative side? You can reach all of these goals and many more with the Intensive Journal® Program at FUMCFW.
This nationally-recognized program was developed in 1966 by Dr. Ira Progoff to help people experience a life-changing process that gives them greater direction, vitality, and purpose. Since then, it has helped 175,000 people lead more fulfilling lives.
Workshop leader Rev. Meredith Bell is the director of the UCF Wesley Foundation for Navarro College in Corsicana, Texas. She has served as Pastor for Women’s Ministry at White’s Chapel UMC and as a youth pastor at Dallas UMC and Graham UMC. Meredith was a hospital chaplain for five years in the Texas Health Resources System Services. For more information, contact Melinda Smoot (email@example.com).
O come, let us sing to the Lord; let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation! (Psalm 95:1)
There are many ways to lift up your voice in church. Some people prefer to sing hymns with the congregation. Others resonate loudly from the choir loft to lead us in traditional worship. Cornerstone Youth Choir, Choral Union, Crossroad Singers, and Adoramus Choral Ensemble offer anthems and special music to enhance the Sanctuary worship experience for all of us.
And now, the Singing Men of First Church, a choir comprised solely of male voices, will join together for the first time on Sunday, February 14, during the 9:30 and 11:00 am traditional worship services in the Sanctuary. All ages are welcome, with one exception: no girls allowed! Men, this one is just for you. Whether you are a member of Choral Union looking for something different, or if you are interested in a short-term choir experience, this is your chance to join your First Church brothers in song.
Click here to learn more about this unique singing opportunity.
FUMCFW joined forces with Lighthouse for the Blind to start a Goalball League, the premiere team game for blind athletes. The first practice was last Saturday, and everyone had a ball! Both visually impaired participants and sighted volunteers with blindfolds experienced the joy of playing this wonderful sport together. Even though we had a great turnout from the community, we are still looking for more volunteers to help retrieve the ball quickly and put it back into play. Goalball will continue on Saturday mornings through March 5 from 9:30 am – 12:00 pm in the Justin Building. If you would like to volunteer, please contact Nancy Fisher (firstname.lastname@example.org) at 817/332-3341 or Rev. Chuck Graff (email@example.com) at 817/339-5065.
At their first meeting of the new year, FUMCFW Trustees approved a series of projects designed to enhance the worship and education experience at our church. Many of the projects have been on a wish list for several years, and now the Trustees are able to move forward with the following projects funded by the First Methodist Church Foundation:
• New A/V equipment in five classrooms
• Repainting and new carpet, ceiling tile, and chair upholstery for several adult classrooms
• New Martin Digital Organ in Leonard Memorial Chapel
• Major project to correct drainage problems in the Garden
• Architectural contract to begin work on updating the church master plan
• Updated security and emergency operations plan
Click here to read Trustee Roy Eaton’s blog about these exciting new church projects.
“I keep thinking of our Sunday worship closing: ‘We will go out to be God’s people in the world.’ That’s the perfect connection with what General Conference does — literally.”
— Bliss Dodd, delegate at three General Conferences
The 2016 United Methodist General Conference will be held in Portland, Oregon, from May 10 – 20, and we want you to be in the know about it. Please join us for the churchwide General Conference presentations on February 7, as well as our “Luncheon and Dialogue Gatherings” on February 21 and March 6.
General Conference, the top policy-making body of the United Methodist Church, is an important worldwide gathering of our church. Every four years, the conference meets to revise church law, adopt resolutions on current issues, and approve plans and budgets for churchwide programs.
John Wesley, founder of the Methodist movement, lived by three basic rules: 1) Do no harm, 2) Do good, and 3) Stay in love with God. If you were in traditional worship this past Sunday, you will have heard Dr. Bruster’s sermon that spoke to this way of living. As God’s people, we can join together to make a difference — here at FUMCFW and around the world.
Sunday, February 7
9:30 & 11:11 am | Wesley Hall
Dr. Tim Bruster, Leader of the Central Texas Conference 2016 General Conference Delegation, and Mr. Tom Harkrider, First-Elected Lay Delegate, will be leading a special informational meeting about the United Methodist General Conference that will be held in Portland, Oregon, from May 10 – 20, 2016. These churchwide presentations will be in Wesley Hall on Sunday, February 7, at 9:30 am and during eleven:eleven celebration. All members of the congregation and guests are encouraged to join these extremely informative sessions.
Sunday, February 7
Offered the first Sunday of every month
11:00 am | Room 230 | Led by Rev. Casey Orr | Registration required
Baptism 101 must be attended by first-time parents and/or parents whose older children were not baptized in a United Methodist Church. At the class, a pastor will discuss the history, theology, meaning, and responsibility of baptism. We will also go over logistics and steps to scheduling. Not to mention it’s a great chance to meet other young families. It is offered the first Sunday of every month at 11:00 am in Room 230. While the nursery is available during class time, babies and children are more than welcome to join! There is no cost to join the class; however, we do ask that you register online, or by contacting Gayle Ammerman (firstname.lastname@example.org) at 817/339-5091, so that we can prepare accordingly. For other questions, please contact Rev. Casey Orr (email@example.com) at 817/339-5067.
Sunday, February 7
Immediately after 11:00 am Worship | Meet at front of Sanctuary
Want to find a Sunday School class, learn about our Library, Television Ministry, Children’s Ministries, and more? Join our tour of the building on Sunday, February 7. Meet Dianne Fisher at the front of the Sanctuary immediately following the 11:00 am worship service.
Sunday, February 14
11:00 am | Sanctuary
Reception in Children’s Wing Atrium following ceremony
Join us for one of FUMCFW’s most cherished traditions! Baby Celebration Sunday is a time to recognize all the babies born in 2015, and reaffirm how much these children mean to our church family. A special reception for our honored families will take place immediately following the ceremony in the Children’s Wing Atrium. If you had a child born in 2015, click here to register online or contact Janice Cooper (firstname.lastname@example.org) at 817/339-5093.
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Sunday, January 24
Noon | Room 154
Our 2016 Costa Rica Mission Trip is July 1 –11, and this is an amazing opportunity to serve others. If you are interested in joining us, attend this brief informational meeting to get the details, receive an itinerary and trip costs, and hear about our 11th year of serving in northern Costa Rica. For more information, contact Rev. Chuck Graff (email@example.com) at 817/339-5065.
February 3 – March 9
Wednesdays | 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.
Pre-Registration for Parents’ Day Out and Preschool
January 21 – February 12
Pre-registration is for our currents students and church members. We will register for the 2016 Summer Programs and 2016 – 2017 School Year. Parents’ Day Out (PDO) is for children 9 months – 2 years old (as of August 31, 2016) for the summer program and 3 – 23 months (as of September 1, 2016) for the school year. The Preschool is for children ages 2 – 5 (as of September 1, 2015) for the summer camps and ages 2 – 5 (as of September 1, 2016) for the school year. For more information about PDO, contact Paula Wagstaff (firstname.lastname@example.org). For more information about Preschool, contact Nina Burrows (email@example.com).
Academy begins February 14
Classes fill up quickly | Register online now
Registration for Children’s Academy Sunday School begins on January 3 immediately after Children First in the Children’s Wing and at 2:00 pm online.
During the month of January, please bring diapers to:
First Street Methodist Mission | Monday – Thursday | 8:00 am – 4:00 pm
OR in the donation bins at the West, East, & Garden Entrances | Sunday mornings
For more information, contact Linda Murphy (firstname.lastname@example.org) at 817/339-2404.
Sunday, February 14
9:30 & 11:00 am | Sanctuary
Singing Men of First Church Rehearsals
1.27 | 7:00 – 8:00 pm | Choir Room
2.3 | 7:00 – 9:00 pm | Choir Room
2.14 | 8:30 am | Choir Room
The Singing Men of First Church, a choir comprised solely of male voices, will join together for the first time during the 9:30 and 11:00 am Sanctuary worship services on Sunday, February 14. This short-term choir — or “sprint choir” — will only rehearse two or three times before singing together. Men of all ages are welcome, whether you are a member of the Choral Union looking for something different, or if you are interested in a short-term choir experience. The Singing Men of First Church will perform under the direction of Mr. Robert Stovall, Interim Director of Adult Choirs. The choir will learn two songs: “Rise Up, O Men of God” by Kenneth Jennings and “Be Thou My Vision” by Dan Forrest (with cello, harp, and piano accompaniment). Click here to register online for this unique singing opportunity. You can also go to the Welcome Center or Main Office to pick up and turn in a registration card. For more information, contact Peggy Graff (email@example.com) at 817/339-2405.
FUMCFW Honorary Gifts: December 22, 2015 – January 7, 2016
Children’s Ministry In Honor Of:
Emma Burrows by Jenny & Dave Purcell
Ron White by Margaret & Michael Patison
Choir Fund In Honor Of:
Phil Thompson by Margaret & Michael Patison
Christmas Fund In Honor Of:
Mark Burrows by Anne & Henry Paup
Feeding the Flock In Honor Of:
Al Crim by Jenny & Dave Purcell
First Street Methodist Mission In Honor Of:
Elizabeth Becker by Jenny & Dave Purcell
Hank Carroll by Shirley & Paul Johnson
Leila & Bob Adams by Carole & T.G. Gebhard Jr.
Pat Merrill by Carol McCarthy
General Fund In Honor Of:
Dr. Lamar Smith by The Sumner Family
Dr. Tim Bruster by The Sumner Family
FUMC Senior Ministries by Yolonda Howard
Louella Martin by The Nicholas & Louella Martin Charitable Fund of the Community Foundation of North Texas
Kenya Mission In Honor Of:
Molly McDermott’s birthday by Janie & Evan Faris
Tim McDermott’s graduation by Janie & Evan Faris
Tim McDermott’s graduation by Rev. Linda & Rev. Tom McDermott
Methodist Justice Ministry In Honor Of:
Kay Yount by Jane Yount
Linda Gregory by Jenny & Dave Purcell
Mr. & Mrs. Mike Moncrief by Diane & Scott Elliott
Rosie & Mike Moncrief by Kristina Traver
Wayne Pinkerton by Margaret & Michael Patison
FUMCFW Memorial Gifts: December 22, 2015 – January 7, 2016
Children’s Ministry In Memory Of:
Betty Wells by Becky & Jimmy Kilpatrick
Betty Wells by Gloria & David Hilburn
Betty Wells by Susan & John Morris, Pattie & Bruce Cummingham, and Linda & Richard Vigness
First Street Methodist Mission In Memory Of:
Doris Smith by Dell & Michael Wood
George Sumner by Anne & George Cude
George Sumner by Mary Weathers
Laurie Icasta by Diane & Don Wheat
Wanda Martin by Carol & Robert McKinzie
Wanda Martin by Pat & Arch Van Meter
Food 4 Kids In Memory Of:
Betty Corbett by Carol Popp
Food Pantry In Memory Of:
Jimmy Wayne Jones by Doris & Dick Fletcher
Foundation Memorial Fund In Memory Of:
Doris Klabzuba by Dr. & Mrs. Lee Bloemendal
Roy Coleman by Dr. & Mrs. Lee Bloemendal
Wanda Martin by Frances & W.A. Mizell Jr.
General Fund In Memory Of:
Bill Hollister by Carol & Jerry Hendrix
Caren Butler by Catherine Hitt
George Sumner by Carie Burnette
George Sumner by Carol & Jerry Hendrix
George Sumner by Karie & David Riegel
George Sumner by Kathleen & Robert Griffin
George Sumner by Linda & Michael Nolan
George Sumner by Marc Walraven
George Sumner by Mr. & Mrs. Roy Eaton
George Sumner by Nancy & William Blalock
Joe Foster by Catherine Hitt
Jonathan Jackson by Marisa & Bradley Mercer
Mary Foster by Catherine Hitt
Stewart Turnage by Kay Watkins
Wanda Martin by Martha Slover
Wanda Martin by Willa Mae & Ed Lowe
Media Ministry In Memory Of:
Beverly Taylor by Kathryn & Lyle Larson
Methodist Justice Ministry In Memory Of:
Blake Chandler by Mary Alice Chandler Selcer
Jerry Howard by Yolonda Howard
Mission and Outreach Endowment In Memory Of:
Wanda Martin by Hazel Cannon
Wanda Martin by Ruth & Doug Roper & family