First Church Notes: 11.03.2019

News regarding the life and ministry of our wonderfully diverse and energized faith community


Inspired, Slaying Giants, Walking on Water, and Loving the Bible Again, by Rachel Held Evans, will guide our conversation as we gather to discuss the stories, events, people and history of the Bible.  This class will be led by Pastor Tracy and all questions and comments are welcome.  Reading the book Inspired, ahead of the class may be helpful for you, but not required to participate in conversation. The class will meet in the parlor where we will be joined by the Seekers Class.


Would you like to re-engage with the scriptures? Join Companions in Christ for five sessions of practicing meditative readings of scripture, guided by the lectionary text. The groups will meet 5:30 – 7:00 pm on select Wednesday evenings through the fall:  October 23rd, November 13th, and December 11th. Don’t worry, you don’t need to be biblically literate, have any experience with “meditative reading,” or even know what that means! We’ll all learn a new practice together! A light dinner will be provided. For more information, please talk to Joe. If you don’t catch him in the hallways, you can contact him at 304-731-8717 or


Messy Church is a worldwide, all-ages, fun experience of church. It is open to all members of the community, especially those who may not normally attend church on Sunday morning. Many people who do not feel comfortable in a traditional church setting, including persons with disabilities and children who learn differently, have become regular participants in Messy Churches around the world.

Our time together begins with crafts and activities where kids and adults play together in a way that we build new relationships and friendships. Then, we celebrate the joy, play, and mess of God through interactive worship and prayer. And we end with a family-style lunch where the fun and mess continue! There is no cost to attend. All are welcome, all the time, just as you are. 

We look forward to a time filled with great crafts and activities, great celebration, great food and YOU Sunday, November 3rd, 12:30 pm in the Fellowship Hall


November 3-10 we will be hosting our first families! We need volunteers to make dinner, spend the night as a Host and van drivers (must have attended a tailgate safety session on October 22 at 7:30 pm). Sign up on clipboards or call/email Nancy Ross (859)556-3723


The response of the congregation has been overwhelming and wonderful.  We have all the donated supplies needed with gift cards left over to purchase grocery and miscellaneous supplies needed for quite awhile!  We on the Poverty Team are extremely amazed and grateful. Our first host week begins Sunday evening, Nov. 3.

If you have questions, feel free to contact Glenna Wilson. or 412.519.5062


Join the “eco” conversation on Tuesday, November 5th at 7 pm. We will be sharing our own understandings of “eco ministry”. To whom/to what do we minister? How many “eco” words are there? Do they have anything in common? Does eco-ministry share concerns with other ministries? What eco hints do we get from scripture?

We will also start planning our joint project with ELPC to engage political leaders with letter writing and visits about eco matters.

Join the conversation. New voices welcome!


Please plan to join the following activities which have been planned with Warren UMC between November 10th and 17th!

Two shared worship services:

Sunday, November 10th – 11 AM – First Church worshiping AT Warren UMC, 2604 Centre Ave.

·         A van will transport First Church folks to Warren UMC between 10:20 AM and 11:00 AM; specific departure times will be publicized as soon as they have been determined. The van will return worshippers to FUMC after the service.

·         Since Warren UMC is working on its facilities, they will offer take home dinners after worship. There will be a choice of meals: Vegetable Lasagna or Chicken Marsala. If you would like a take home meal, please reserve one by either filling out the bulletin insert on Sunday morning or by e-mailing Karen Merrick (

Sunday, November 17th-11 AM–worship & All Church Thanksgiving Dinner at First UMC

During the week:

    Monday, November 11th – 7 PM at Warren UMC a public reading of Martin Luther King’s “Beyond Vietnam” speech followed by discussion

    Tuesday, November 12th thru Thursday, November 14th gatherings for light meals and conversation:

·         Tues,  Nov. 12th – 3:00  PM   Pastor Tracy at FUMC in the parlor    (Afternoon tea)

·         Wed,   Nov. 13th – 6:00 PM    Fran Blakley at 6424 Centre Ave, Apartment 201 (Light dinner)

·         Wed,   Nov. 13th – 6:00 PM    Claudia & John Detwiler at 5723 Solway St.   (Light dinner)

·         Thur,   Nov 14th  – 10:00 AM  Betsy & Lee Shaw at 704 Delafield St. (Brunch)

       Please sign up for these in-home gatherings using the bulletin insert on Sunday morning or by e-mailing Tracy Merrick (


First Church is known for its warm hospitality – the mantra being, “All are Welcome and Belong here”.  Our Greeters on Sunday mornings are an important way we demonstrate our welcome statement and this hospitality to all.

We are in need of several more Greeters to offer friendly greetings and welcome to members/guests and hand out bulletins at the Sunday morning worship service.  We especially need greeters for the teams that greet the second and fourth Sunday of the month.

If you would like to be a Greeter for one Sunday a month or possibly a substitute Greeter (when a regular team member is absent on a Sunday), please see Karen Merrick or email her at for more details.  We encourage you to consider becoming a part of this meaningful ministry at First Church!


 Hosts for Fellowship Hour are needed after worship on:

            November 24 and December 8, 22, and 29

If you are able to help in this way, please e-mail Karen Jacobs or call 412.828.3854   


Please provide us with a current college address for your son or daughter.  Please send to:    


Sunday, November 3

  9:00am          Handbell Choir Rehearsal

  9:35am          Chancel Choir Rehearsal

  9:35am          Education for All Ages

11:00am          Worship in the Sanctuary

12:30pm          Messy Church

  6:00pm          Sunday Night Yoga

  6:00pm          Family Promise Hosting all week

Monday, November 4

 9:30am           IWAP English Class

10:00am          Book Club

  6:00pm          Wrestling With Racism at Warren UMC

 6:15pm           Phoenix Institute

Tuesday, November 5

Election  Day

7:45am            Susan Rupani Yoga

10:00am          Play Group

10:15am          Unity in Motion

10:30am          Staff Meeting

  1:00pm          East End Song Studio

  2:00pm          Strengthen & Stretch

  7:00pm          Edgewood Symphony

  7:30pm          NA Reading Group

Wednesday, November 6

9:30am            Shake Hands & Share

1:00pm            East End Song Studio

7:00pm            Mystics in Motion

7:00pm            SPRC

7:30pm            NA

Thursday, November 7

9:30am            IWAP

1:00pm            East End Song Studio

2:00pm            Strengthen & Stretch

7:00pm            Interplay

7:30pm            Chancel Choir Rehearsal

Friday, November 8

12:00pm          AA – Cookies & Kisses

1:00pm            East End Song Studio

5:30pm            Women’s AA

7:00pm            Ecstatic Dance

Saturday, November 9

  9:00am          First Food & Friends


Tracy Cox
DeaconAnais Hussian
Director of Music and Community Tim Coles
Director of Spiritual Formation Joe Smith
Administrative Secretary TBA
Office Assistant Sherry Kaiser
Building Maintenance Manager Curtis Mitchell
Custodians Lamont Hunter
Tacoma Woods
Hospitality Nick Solic
Music Intern Michael Dodin