Monday, April 30, 2012


23 For I received from the Lord what I also handed on to you, that the Lord Jesus on the night when he was betrayed took a loaf of bread, 24 and when he had given thanks, he broke it and said, "This is my body that is for you. Do this in remembrance of me." 25 In the same way he took the cup also, after supper, saying, "This cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of me." 26 For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord's death until he comes.
1 Corinthians 11:23-26

The scripture above (Paul’s letter to the Corinthian church) contains an ancient piece of liturgy of the early Christian community, and is the basis of most communion liturgies. Methodist from the very beginning even before we were a separate church, when John Wesley organized the people called Methodist as a revival movement in the Church of England, were a strong and vital movement because of the involvement of the laity.

Today Methodism is reclaiming its roots as a movement centered on the work of the laity. As such we at First Church are launching a new ministry of Communion Deacons. In accordance to the Discipline of the Church, and after reading and training with the pastor these laypersons will be bring Holy Communion to those unable to attend worship.

We hope to start this summer. After each monthly communion service we, the body of Christ, will send out the Communion Deacons with elements that were consecrated along with elements in the service. Communion has always been brought as an extension of the congregation's worship to the sick or homebound persons. In a continuance of this long standing tradition we are looking for persons to serve in this important ministry.

Those selected to be Communion Deacons must be persons who confess a personal relationship with Jesus Christ; who participate actively in the ministry, mission, and worship of the congregation; and who strive to live out the gospel in their daily lives.

Communion Deacons shall receive training from the pastor in the following areas:
a.     Theology of the Eucharist in The United Methodist Church
b.     Practice of caring for shut-ins and the ill
c.      Procedure for serving the Eucharist outside the worship service in the sanctuary

Communion Deacons will be commissioned at a worship service.   The communion they take to the shut-ins and the ill is an extension of the Lord’s table where we celebrate the renewing power of God’s love in Christ Jesus.

Please prayerful consider if God is calling you to serve in this Important ministry.


The nursery is needed during Sunday morning worship for many of our younger families.  Recently there has been a shortage of volunteers to staff the nursery.  If you would be willing to work an hour shift in the nursery on a Sunday morning, sign up on the bulletin board outside the nursery or contact Heather at the office.  Workers are needed for 8:30, 9:30, and 10:45 to cover both services and the Sunday school hour.  Thanks for volunteering!!

A Call To Serve (ACTS) Ministries of Iowa has announced that its annual Service Surge will be held in Knoxville on May 12 from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m. Participants will gather at the Marion County Fairgrounds Show Barn to check in that morning before splitting into work project groups for the day. Each participant needs to register online at and click on “Service Surge”. The Service Surge hosted by ACTS last year in Knoxville engaged three hundred volunteers.  This small time commitment has a huge impact on the community. Most of the projects will be focused around painting, clean-up, landscaping, and other home repair items.  All volunteers are welcome regardless of age, skill level, or faith background. General labor, hospitality, photo/videographer, and prayer roles are available. Children under 16 must be accompanied by an adult.

The Iowa Annual Conference Rural Life Sunday Offering goes to support projects in rural areas of Iowa.  An example of a project that received funding for this year is Mobile United Methodist Missionaries (MUMMS) of South Central and Southeast Districts.  MUMMS helps to provide VBS, after-school programs, work projects, and many other services for small rural churches and communities without a church.  Please consider donating to this special offering.  

The Fun ‘N Fitness group will meet on Wednesday mornings at 10:30 a.m. in East fellowship Hall. Beginning date is May 2 and we will meet for six weeks. They will be no longer than one hour consisting of exercise, devotions and healthful living tips. We have several who have indicated they will be there but you are not required to register, so just come and enjoy.

The Attica UMW invites the ladies of our church to their annual May Fellowship on May 8th.  A salad-sandwich lunch will be served at NOON with the afternoon program being given by the pastor, Vickie Steffes.  She will be sharing her experience as a member of the mission work team who went to Puerto Rico.  We can car pool from the church leaving at 11:30 a.m. on Tuesday, May 8.

Congratulations to the graduating seniors!  Ross Chrisman and Xenia Macritacia   will be recognized on Sunday, May 6th at the 8:30 service for their achievement. We wish them many blessings in their future endeavors.  

Thank you to those who served as Sunday school teachers this year!! You are what make the education of our church flow.  Please join the Education Committee in thanking these great volunteers on Sunday, May 20 at both services.

There will be no children’s Sunday school classes Memorial Day weekend (May 27th) through Labor Day weekend and will resume the regular schedule on Sunday, September 16.  

The dates have been set, July 22–26.  The theme has been picked, Son World Adventure Park.  Now all we need are some willing volunteers who are ready to have fun sharing the love of Jesus with the children of our church and community.   Watch the bulletins in May and June for details and meeting times for those interested in helping with VBS.

The Youth Group will be traveling to the St. Louis area over Memorial Day weekend for a mission trip.  The students are excited and will be sharing their experience in June so watch for more details. 

Youth Group Meeting Dates for May – Sunday, May 6 from 4 to 6 p.m.; other dates will be set on the 6th by the group.

The church family is welcome to join the students and families of Montgomery Street Preschool at 7 pm on Tuesday, May 22 for their spring concert and graduation.  The kids get to celebrate a great school year and we will send the Pre-K students onto Kindergarten with a small ceremony.  


The church office will be closed on Monday, May 28 for the Memorial Holiday. 

Condolences to the family of Dorothy VandenBerg on her passing. 

Condolences to the family of JV Hollingshead on his passing.

Condolences to Peggy Johnson and family on the passing of her mother. 

Dear Church Family –
I am moving to Emerald Heights in Redmond, Washington – just 10 miles from my daughter, Ruth Anne.  It is hard to leave people who are so friendly, helpful, and kind.  I knew I could count on you in tough times and happy times.  You will always be in my prayers.  Please keep in touch.  Pearl Legler


Christians familiar with the acronym WWJD (what would Jesus do?) will find the genesis of the WWJD movement in the pages of In His Steps. Written by the 19th century pastor, theologian, author, and forerunner of the social gospel movement Charles Sheldon, In His Steps tells the story of Christians who challenge themselves to live as Christ would for a year. Although the book was originally published in 1896, modern readers will find themes that resonate with the current religious and political atmosphere. What does it mean to be a Christian and a citizen? Does the church reflect the teachings of Christ in daily life or are Sunday sermons and hymns merely virtuous platitudes? Follow the lives of seven Christians as they wrestle with the practical implications of living the gospel in Sheldon’s classic In His Steps.  You may read this book for free online (through the website, word document, or PDF file) or listen to a free audio book version of it at

Building Antioch: Your Role in a Transformational Church
This book examines the unique characteristics of Antioch as an example of a transformational church. The church at Antioch provides a concrete expression of what a healthy church looks like. Introduced in Acts 11, this transformational church was open to all people. It was characterized by spiritual power, intentional discipleship, radical generosity, and a missional mindset that impacted the future direction of the early church. The goal of this study is to inspire church members to do their part to make their church a transformational church.

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