Thursday, November 1, 2012


As we head into the holiday season we are again reminding all that both Thanksgiving and Christmas are not about us. Thanksgiving is about giving thanks to God for all his blessings and Christmas is about celebrating birth of the Christ (Gk. Christos anoint one), the Son of God who said “it is more blessed to give then receive” [Acts 20:35] and “whoever has two coats must share with anyone who has none and whoever has food must do likewise.” [Luke 3:11] To help keep the right spiritual focus during the holiday season we are once again challenging all to refocus our giving/spending this season by calculating what we are spending on ourselves and family and to give the same amount to Jesus. How might we give to Jesus? By giving to a charity or organization that is loving and caring for others the way Jesus invites us to do. Now there are many wonderful charities, the important thing is to support them, as we do this we are spreading the love of Jesus. If you feel you can't equal a gift to Jesus in the amount what you spend of yourself and family at least give a tithe (10%) gift to Jesus or 15, 20, 25%..., whatever you believe is appropriate.

Again this year you can also give a special gift through the Church by simply marking your gift Special Holiday Giving.

We will be dividing the offering in 3 ways this year: 1) In support of special ministries in our church 1/3 will be divided between the Basketball Academy and MSPS for scholarships. 2) 1/3 will be giving to a local mission agency Neighbor Helping Neighbor. 3) 1/3 will go to a world mission project the Malawi provisional conference to help develop their conference farm that helps train people in improved agricultural techniques.

Let's Give Jesus the gift this season he so freely gave to us, love for others.

Jesus is the Reason for the Season,

FUMC is partnering with Helping Hands to make sure that our friends and neighbors have an opportunity to enjoy a Thanksgiving Day meal.  Last year FUMC gave out over 50 Thanksgiving Baskets to those in need in the community – the need could be higher this year.  Each basket is around $25 and will feed a family of 5 or more.  Designated donations may be made at the office or dropped in the offering plate.  If you would like to help put the baskets together and/or assist with the distribution please contact the office or Joel Johnson.



Marion County gets to keep 90% of the funds raised by the Marion County Salvation Army Bell Ringers to assist those in need.   Last year over $44,000 was raised but those funds are now completely depleted.  The need is now greater than ever.  The bell ringers will begin ringing during the Living Windows in Knoxville on Thursday, November 15th and will continue throughout the Christmas season. You can help again this year in two ways:   1) If you would like to help those in need in Marion County please go to and select the Bell Ringers Marion County link.  This will show the times and places available for bell ringing.  To share your gift of time for those in need this Christmas Season, please contact Merna Furney at 641-842-3072 or 641-218-8026.   She keeps the master list and will gladly add your name to the list.   2)  Give generously.  Every penny adds up.

Volunteers are needed to staff the nursery during Sunday first service through second services for the months of November and December.   A sign-up sheet is in the Narthex. 

United Methodist Student Day is celebrated the last Sunday of November. United Methodist Student Day is one of the six churchwide Special Sundays of The United Methodist Church. United Methodist Student Day furnishes scholarships and loans for students attending United Methodist-related and other accredited colleges and universities.  Offerings support the Scholarships and the Student Loans Funds of the United Methodist Church. The monies received are administered by General Board of Higher Education and Ministry.

We are still collecting for the water main repair expense.  To date we have received $8267 towards our goal of $15,157.  If you would like to contribute to this please indicate water main repair on the memo of your check or on an offering envelope.

Please join us to honor retiring custodian, Folmer Petersen, during Cinnamon Roll Sunday on Nov. 11th at 9:30 a.m. in WFH.  Cards of appreciation are welcome. 

A community wide Thanksgiving Service will be held on Sunday, November 18th at 7:00 p.m. at FUMC Sanctuary with refreshments to follow in WFH. 


Everyone is invited to our annual Fall Harvest Dinner, as we thank Him for His many Blessings.  The dinner will be Saturday, November 17, from 5:00 to 7:00 pm in East Fellowship Hall.  The meal will consist of ham balls, cheesy potatoes, green beans, salads, and delicious pies.  Carry outs will be available. A free will offering will be accepted to support Montgomery Street Preschool and Fellowship Uniting Neighbors (FUN). Everyone is invited - so bring your friends and Neighbors.  We will be in need of donated pies and help on Friday and Saturday for preparation and serving the Harvest Dinner.  Contact Merna or Bonnie or sign up at the office.

Giving is our reflection of Christ’s generosity.   We invite you to grow in giving by completing a faith commitment card and place it in the basket during the November 10 & 11 worship services.

In our church's Advent preparations we are studying the book The Journey by Adam Hamilton.  In his study material he refers to Christmas Is Not Your Birthday the movement fostered by Mike Slaughter. Plan to join us in this study and preaching series that begins the weekend December 1 & 2. We have a limited number of copies of the book available for purchase at the church for the discounted rate of $11.33. This book may be the greatest Christmas present of the year. Adam Hamilton thoughtfully, movingly walks us through what really happened when God touched this planet. The richness of the full story will touch your life as well.

This year we will be using devotional booklets provided by the Society of St. Andrews entitled “Joy to the World!” for our Advent devotions for the advent season Dec. 2 – Dec. 25.  This program is designed to draw participants closer to God’s loving gift to the world – Jesus.   This unique devotion booklet, based on Luke 1:44. “For as soon as I heard the sound of your greeting, the child in my womb leaped for joy” can be used as a personal devotion booklet or as a catalyst for bringing about conversations within your Sunday school classes, small groups, or family on what makes each one of us leap for joy as we prepare to welcome the Christ Child into the world this Christmas. As we welcome Immanuel into our lives this Holy Advent Season, discover through the words of many writers how they share the joy of Christ during the Christmas season and throughout the year. Through the scripture readings, daily devotions, and prayers, our Advent devotions program will nourish your spirit while also providing an opportunity to feed our hungry neighbors.  Booklets will be available at the church office window ledge.

The Children's Sunday School Christmas Program will be held on Sunday, December 16.  Watch for details in the December newsletter. The Youth are actively working on putting the program together!  It is sure to be one not to miss!!

Calling All Children....
If you or your child is between the age of 3 and 6th grade let us know if you would like to be included for a part in the Christmas program.  It is encouraged that all children participating attend Sunday school during November so that they may learn their parts. Contact Katie Bishop or the Youth Sunday School Class if you have questions.

The FUMC church family is invited to attend our Christmas Program which will be held on Thursday, December 20 at 9:00 a.m.

The schedule for FUMC Youth Group is listed below.  Invite all youth in grades 7 through 12 to come join us on any of these Sundays.  We meet from 4 to 6 pm.

Ø  November 4
Ø  November 11
Ø  November 18
Ø  November 25 - No Youth - Happy Thanksgiving!!
Ø  December 2
Ø  December 9
Ø  December 16
Ø  December 23 and 30 - No Youth - Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!!
Ø  January 6

Watch for upcoming details of our next mission trip and fundraisers!!

Condolences to Jack and Dick Sterling and families on the passing of their sister.
Condolences to Ruth Beebout and family on the passing of her son-in-law.

Condolences to Susan Miller and family on the passing of her mother.

Thank you to all of you for prayers, concerns, cards, donations towards Dick’s memorial and food you prepared.  To UMW for refreshments after the service.  To Folmer for the extra work he did for us.  To Geoff for playing the organ.  You truly warmed our hearts.  May God bless you each and everyone.  Jenny Dircks and Family

Thank you church family for your prayers and your concern for Larry and I during his long illness and passing.  Your love surrounded us and gave us strength.  May God bless you for this.  Frances Kirkwood

Words can’t express our appreciation for the many cards we received for our big “50”.  Thanks to all of you and God Bless.  Cliff and Dorothy Danner

Thank you for the prayers, cards, calls and visits while I recuperate.  Marvin and I appreciate all of you, and feel blessed for such a caring church family.  Joyce Brooks

Thank you to everyone that supported the MSPS Hoagie Sale!! We set a 5 year record with over 1300 sandwiches being sold!!  Thanks again from the staff and students of MSPS.

Tim Gotta has been hired as the church’s new custodian.  Please join in welcoming him to his new position! 

november church office closures
The church office will be closed November 22nd and 23rd for the Thanksgiving holiday. 

FYI - New address is: 
Erma Darnell
Caroline House Room 210      
100 Lanark Road      
Chapel Hill, NC  27517    

Listen to a 6 minute podcast of Joel Johnson talking about the FUMC Basketball Academy by going to the web at and searching for basketball academy.  

Our Fair Trade Equal Exchange Pantry in the Narthex is stocked for the holiday shopping.  We have coffees, teas, cocoas, baking cocoa, and lots of dark and milk chocolate bars.  These are all excellent quality produced by the small farmers and businesses around the world.  Treat yourself and others as part of the proceeds go to support UMCOR.  They are perfect for using or gift giving.  Check it out!

If you are looking for a way to connect in a deeper more meaningful way with God and God in your prayer life I want to recommend a new book: 30 Days with Wesley: A Prayer Book. This prayer book, while giving much attention to using the Scriptures and written prayers as vehicles for a deeper communion with God, is designed to include and enhance a person's own freely expressed personal prayers. Each of the thirty days is divided into morning and evening prayer times. Following the design of traditional Christian prayer, each morning-prayer section includes an opening psalm, a hymn, two additional psalm passages with accompanying prayers, an optional Scripture reading, an extended prayer with space for personal prayers, space for the Lord's Prayer, and a dismissal prayer. The evening-prayer section is a shorter version of the morning section and is prefaced with self-examination questions to encourage spiritual growth. Evening prayer concludes with space for writing personal reflections or meditations. Most of the prayers and sell-examination questions are based on the prayers of John Wesley. This eighteenth-century Anglican priest and founder of Methodism composed three sets of weekly prayers: "Forms of Prayer," designed for individuals; "Prayers for Families"; and "Prayers for Children." As a priest in the Church of England, Wesley was well acquainted with the prayer book of his community, The Book of Common Prayer. For Wesley praying was a special means of grace, and this understanding is reflected in his written prayers. The prayers in this book have in most cases been adapted from Wesley's work, using more contemporary language, plural pronouns to emphasize community, and rearranged structure to reflect traditional Christian prayer patterns.
The book is available through Cokesbury store in Des Moines or I’m sure you could find it online.

3 ways to Relieve Stress Before the Holidays
The holiday season can be stressful. Here's three things to help you recapture a sense of the true spirit of Thanksgiving and Christmas.
1) Lower your expectations.
It is easy to become swept up in what the media portrays holidays should look like—warm family gatherings, children happily giving and receiving, pre­cious gifts exchanged as snowfall quiets the night. Fam­ilies sick with the flu, kids fighting over toys, a dad who isn't there, estranged relatives, a schedule way too full, an unexpected emergency, and the lack of funds are rarely pictured. To ward off the holiday blues, remind yourself that what really matters is to express the great­est commandments: to love God with your whole heart and your neighbor as yourself. That is where you will find real contentment.
2) Simplify your lifestyle. Culture screams "The more the better!" This year, instead of watching your calendar fill up, go ahead now and block out personal time, couple time and family time. Then when that really nice invitation comes along, have the courage to say, "I'm so sorry we have a conflict." It is far easier to set boundaries before the commitments start to pile up.
3) Determine what you can postpone.  Be courageous and eliminate one or two things you usually do and instead declare a family night at home alone. Use that night to reconnect with the meaning of the holidays and with each other. Be coura­geous and carve out time to "Be still and know that I am God" (Psalm 46:10) this season.

Will be December 3-4

Poinsettias will be available for $9.00 this year and the deadline for ordering is November 27. 

Please mark one of the options below and attach your check or cash to this form. 

____ I/We wish to donate
____ (designate how many) poinsettia(s) at $9.00 each to share in the worship service. 
(memory of) ______________________
(honor of) _________________________
Given by:  _________________________

Please Mark One of the Following:
____ Deliver the poinsettia(s) to a homebound member by the committee
____  I/We will pick up the poinsettia(s) & deliver to:  ____________
____ I/We will pick up the poinsettia(s)
Your name:   ________________
***Please complete the form and drop it off along with your payment at the church office.***

 RESPONSE MAGAZINE (UNITED METHODIST WOMEN, INC)                                        November 2012 Issue
The Almost Free Shop by PAT HANING
About 10 years ago First United Methodist Church in Knoxville, Iowa, bought a couple of buildings across the alley from our church. One was very adaptable for meetings and activities, but the other was an old feed and produce store that smelled of fermented feed. The church tried to resell it but found no one else wanted to deal with it either.
Enter United Methodist Women. With the help of the men of the church, we started cleaning, putting up drywall, painting and eventually laying carpet. When the first of five rooms was finished, we set up a resale shop and stocked it with items left over from our annual rummage sale. We feared not having enough merchandise to fill the room.
But, like we say in Iowa, "Build it and they will come!" We named it "The Al­most Free Shop," advertised it in the lo­cal shopper and people started coming. We sorted all donations and marked each item. Quickly our one room was full, and we cleaned up an­other room. It got to the point we couldn't keep up with marking each item so we set one price: 50 cents for most of the clothing and only marked the kitchen items, tools, bed­ding and knickknacks. Our sorting room was moved into an unheated garage behind the store, so we sorted wearing coats and gloves. 
Today we have heat in the sorting room, and as always, all our labor is vol­unteer help, and all sale items are do­nated. We are open two half-days and one full day a week. In the process we are fulfilling five mission objectives:
We are a place for people to recycle their used items.
Our prices are very affordable so any­ one can shop for their families' needs.
We donate coats, sweatpants and tops to local schools for children who get wet or just need them.
We give vouchers to a local group serving clients in severe need. In the case of a natural disaster, we contact the families to see how we can help.
• We take time to listen to customers who may also need someone to visit.
Our only expenses are utilities, pest con­trol and snow removal. Our income over the past few years has been around $30,000 per year, which we use for mis­sion.
God has blessed us with a facility and resources to provide a very needed serv­ice in our area, and we have a wonderful group of people who are willing to vol­unteer their time to make it happen. Thanks be to God!

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