The Celebration Expands to Add nine:thirty-nine
General Conference: What it Means to United Methodists
February at UMW: “Lost & Found”
Intensive Journal® Two-Part Program
Improv 1st! Improvisational Comedy for Life
Churchwide General Conference Presentations
February Church Tour
February Foundation Lunch & Learn
Baby Celebration Sunday
Cowtown Adults 5K Race
Don’t Be a Victim of Medicare Fraud
UMW February General Meeting
Rebuilding When Your Relationship Ends
Living Through Grief Support Group
Traditional Worship | 9:30 & 11:00 am | Sanctuary | Dr. Tim Bruster
DiscipleChurch | Community Breakfast | 7:20 am | Wesley Hall
Chapel | 8:30 am | Rev. DeAndrea Dare
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
2 Timothy 3:14-17
Anyone who says that the Bible is straightforward and simple hasn’t read it. Anyone who says scripture speaks plainly to the issues and challenges and questions we have today probably doesn’t take seriously the conflicting passages, the pre-scientific understanding of our world, and the different cultural influences at work in the times and places of the writing of the sacred text. Having a lens, or a way of reading scripture, is not optional. Everybody has one. The question is the effectiveness of that lens or way of reading scripture.
This Sunday is the final sermon in my series, The United Methodist Way, and my topic will be “A Way of Understanding Scripture.” Four decades ago, United Methodist Theologian and Wesley Scholar, Dr. Albert Outler, summarized for us the way in which John Wesley approached theological questions and how that has informed the way we, as United Methodists, approach this theological task in our time. He developed what he called “the Wesleyan Quadrilateral.” He said that we have four ways of approaching any theological question: scripture, tradition, experience, and reason. He put it this way: “Wesley believed that the living core of the Christian faith was revealed in Scripture, illumined by tradition, vivified in personal experience, and confirmed by reason.”
So, as we approach a question, scripture is the primary source and norm for our understanding. Yet, as we all know, scripture requires not only translation from the original languages of Hebrew, Greek, and Aramaic, but it requires interpretation. Tradition, experience, and reason are the means by which we interpret scripture. We will take a look at these briefly on Sunday as we wrap up this series.
This Sunday is also the culmination of our stewardship emphasis. I want to remind you about the importance of giving and the need to make a commitment, a pledge of what you intend to give to the church for our ministries and operations in 2016. If you have not already done so, please consider and pray about your giving to the church, and be prepared on Sunday to turn in your card indicating your intentions. This is both a ritual of making a stewardship commitment as part of worship and a practical way of helping our church’s finance committee plan for funding our ministries in the current year. You may also click here to make your commitment online. Or, if you’d prefer to print out a pledge card at home, click here to download a PDF.
I look forward to seeing you on Sunday.
Grace and Peace,
Dr. Tim Bruster,
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!
Faith In Action: Let’s Set a New Record
Last Sunday in traditional worship, I shared some of my thoughts about why I give and my early memories of giving to my church. During my talk, I said that about one-third of our congregation completed a pledge in 2015, and although some may say that low pledge participation is a national trend, I’m not sure I agree with that. What’s more, I KNOW that we at First Church Fort Worth can do better When I mention this conundrum to individual church members, almost without exception they agree that our church can do better. We’ve talked a lot about why we give, but why don’t people fill out an annual commitment card? Click here to continue reading.
Hannah Circle to Host Our First Connections in Wesley Hall!
Last week I talked about Connections, the opportunity to visit with one another between services beginning on February 14. Each Sunday from 10:30 – 11:00 am, Wesley Hall will be set up and ready to offer members, visitors, and guests from all our different Sunday morning worship and study opportunities the chance to grab a cup of coffee and discuss what’s new — from the Sunday sermon to the most recent TCU game, and all points in between! And, when it’s nice out, we’ll throw open the doors to enjoy Connections outside in the Garden. It’s the perfect opportunity to catch up with old friends and make new ones! Click here continue reading.
All great deeds begin as little seeds
“With what can we compare the kingdom of God, or what parable shall we use for it? It is like a grain of mustard seed, which, when sown on the ground, is the smallest of all the seeds on earth, yet when it is sown it grows up and becomes larger than all the garden plants and puts out large branches, so that the birds of the air can make nests in its shade.”
— Mark 4:30-32
All great deeds begin as little seeds. Click here to continue reading.
Rev. Tom McDermott
“What is the greatest joy in life?” A friend of mine from Seminary, John, asked me that question after soundly beating me during one of our annual games of racquetball. He was always very competitive, though he was not particularly athletic and might have even been considered a little “out of shape.” I am not particularly competitive, though I’ve always exercised pretty regularly. We typically played only once a year during Minister’s Week at TCU. In the meantime, I tried to play regularly enough to improve my game. Sometimes, just to rub his victory in my face, as we’d leave the Y, he’d stop and light up a cigarette. Click here to continue reading.
More than 12 years ago, FUMCFW introduced eleven:eleven celebration as an alternative worship opportunity, and it has continued to grow ever since. As many as 30 new members — including young adults, couples, and families — have joined this community within the past year, and it draws in even more new visitors every week. Because attendance has increased so much, this unique FUMCFW worshipping community will now expand its existing celebration into a second service to target and connect with new people beyond our church family — and also offer another time option for those already here.
Starting on February 14, we will kick off the nine:thirty-nine celebration on Sunday mornings at 9:39 am in Wesley Hall to offer an expanded community this nontraditional mix of music and message, laughter and storytelling — and then some. Come casual, bring your family, and join the celebration to discover new insights into radical community, the universal love of God, and living for the healing and transformation of our world.
Click here to learn more.
“Not only has being involved at all levels of the United Methodist Church helped me develop and grow in my faith, but it has also given me an even larger appreciation and understanding of what it means to be a United Methodist.
— Darcy Deupree, member of the delegation
As alternate to General Conference, delegate to Jurisdictional Conference, and member of the Central Texas Conference (our own CTC) delegation, Darcy Deupree is no stranger to the United Methodist Church and all its values. Darcy grew up at FUMCFW, and she says that becoming involved at all the conference levels was an exciting next step for her. This makes the second time Darcy has been elected as lay delegate to Jurisdictional Conference, which is the regional body of the United Methodist Church that chooses new bishops.
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. For the upcoming 2016 General and Jurisdictional Conferences, Dr. Tim Bruster was the first clergy to be elected as a delegate; in this role he will lead the entire Central Texas Conference delegation to General Conference 2016. This is a pivotal leadership role in our conference and in our denomination nationwide.
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.
Click here to read more about General Conference and what it means to FUMCFW’s own Darcy Deupree. For more information about these different groups and what they do, check out Darcy’s blog — and be sure to follow Darcy during General Conference 2016!
The United Methodist Women of FUMCFW are uncovering a mystery at their February General Meeting & Luncheon. Art Gallery Owner Ray Ramsey will share the fascinating story about how he lost — and found — paintings that were stolen from his family’s extensive art collection. Dorothy Hudson, President of UMW, and Anne Paup, former president, recently visited Ramsey at his gallery in Hamilton, Texas. Click here for a sneak peek of his story in the February 2016 UMW Preview with the President. Then, join UMW on Tuesday, February 2, at 11:30 am in Wesley Hall to hear all about “The Mystery of the Lost Art” as told by Ramsey himself.
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).
January 31 – March 20
Sundays | 1:00 – 3:00 pm | Foundation Building, 3rd Floor
Led by Winn LaRue & Chuck Shanlever
Learn improv techniques and games to enhance spontaneity, build community, strengthen relationships, increase your comic confidence, and discover pure joy “in the moment.” Always unpredictable, always laugh out loud fun! Come try it out for a session or two and see what all the laughter’s about! Class is free, casual, and open to all ages from 17 to 97! Instructors are Winn LaRue: Actor, Improvisor, Voiceover Artist winnlarue.com and Chuck Shanlever: Videographer and Producer, Photographic Artist, Graduate of Four Day Weekend Improv School. For more information, contact Rev. Tom McDermott at 817/339-3881 or Gayle Ammerman (firstname.lastname@example.org) at 817/339-5091.
Sunday, February 7
9:30 & 11:11 am | Wesley Hall
Dr. Tim Bruster, Leader of the Central Texas Conference 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. 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 (email@example.com) at 817/339-5091, so that we can prepare accordingly. For other questions, please contact Rev. Casey Orr (firstname.lastname@example.org) 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.
Thursday, February 11
Noon – 1:00 pm | Foundation Building | Room 271
RSVP by 2.8
L❤ve our Church? L❤ve our Foundation? Come feel the Foundation L❤VE and join us for lunch to learn more about the Foundation on Thursday, February 11, from noon to 1:00 pm. We want to answer your questions. The lunch is free, but we do need an RSVP by February 8 so we can order you a lunch! For more information or to make a reservation, contact Lisa Tucker (email@example.com) at 817/339-5089.
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 welcomed a child in 2015, click here to register online or contact Janice Cooper (firstname.lastname@example.org) at 817/339-5093.
Saturday, February 27
8:00 am | Meet at National Cowgirl Museum
8:30 am | Race begins
Join FUMCFW for the 2016 Cowtown Adults 5K! Walk or jog the 5K race with us at the Fort Worth Cowtown on Saturday, February 27. We will register individually online at cowtownmarathon.org. The race begins at 8:30 am, and we will meet together as a group in front of the National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame at 8:00 am. For more information, contact Rev. Chuck Graff (email@example.com) at 817/339-5065. Enjoy some great fellowship and exercise as we support this amazing community event!
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Sunday, January 31
12:15 – 1:45 pm | Room 154
Box lunch available for $10
Medicare fraud and abuse are real. Every year, American taxpayers lose nearly $60 billion to outright scams, improper payments, and other illegal practices that drain money from health care programs that provide vital health care services to millions of seniors. The Senior Medicare Patrol (SMP), smpresource.org, is a group of highly trained volunteers who help Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries avoid, detect, and prevent health care fraud. SMP volunteers teach Medicare beneficiaries how to protect their personal information, identify and report errors on their health care statements, recognize scams — such as illegal marketing, providing unnecessary services, and charging for services that were not provided— and report fraud and abuse to the proper authorities. Topics include:
- Warning signs of potential fraud
- Current Medicare fraud schemes
- How to review a Medicare Summary Notice (MSN) for fraudulent charges
- Tips to prevent fraud of your Medicare number
Box lunches will be provided for $10 with a reservation. There is no charge to attend without eating. To make a reservation, please contact Marianne Wilson (firstname.lastname@example.org) at 817/339-5071.
Tuesday, February 2
11:30 am | Wesley Hall | $15
RSVP by noon on Friday, 1.29
“The Mystery of the Lost Art” | Presented by Ray Ramsey, Art Gallery Owner
Click here to RSVP now! or call the UMW RSVP line at 469/844-8690.
February 3 – March 9
Wednesdays | 6:00 – 7:30 pm
Foundation Building, 2nd Floor
Led by Rev. Phyllis Barren | Registration required
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. For more information, contact Phyllis Barren (email@example.com) at 817/339-5082. To register, contact Marianne Wilson (firstname.lastname@example.org) at 817/339-5071.
February 14 – March 6
Sundays | 9:30 – 10:45 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. The opportunity is given for sharing personal concerns. Participation is free and you do not need to be a church member to participate. The optional guidebook is $5. For more information or to register, contact Marianne Wilson (email@example.com) at 817/339-5071.
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
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
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 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.
Wednesday, February 3
6:30 – 7:30 pm | Kincaid’s and Zaxby’s
Join us for our February First Wednesday Dinner! Andrew will be at Kincaid’s on Camp Bowie in Fort Worth and Martin will be at Zaxby’s on Keller Parkway in Keller. We’ll see you there!
First Street Methodist Mission In Honor Of:
Anne Paup by FUMCFW United Methodist Women
First Street Methodist Mission In Memory Of:
Jim Greenhill by Shirley & W.J. Armour
General Memorial Fund In Memory Of:
George Hules by James Campbell
Outreach In Memory Of:
Wanda Martin by Emily & Dennis Burk
Wanda Martin by Gail & David Auld