First United Methodist Church Westfield

FUMC Connect

Posted by on Jan 17, 2019

All FUMC Connect submissions should be emailed to communications@fumcwestfield.org

 

Winter Weather Update

We are aware of the impending weather, and a decision will be made on Saturday as to whether worship will be held this Sunday. Rev. Williams will send out an email notification if the decision is made to cancel, and posts will be made to the WebsiteFacebook, and Instagram

Even if church continues, please stay home if it is unsafe for you to attend. Praying that everyone is warm and safe this weekend!

 

Current Happenings

  1. Lord & Taylor Parking 

The parking lot adjacent to the church parking lot is no longer open to the public. Lord & Taylor has given FUMC permission to park in their customer parking lot in the section closet to the church. This permission extends to Sunday worship and special worship services that require overflow parking. Parking is also available in the town lot located on Prospect Street. Let us continue to praise God for neighborly relationships and the continued growth of our church in such a way that necessitates overflow parking. 

 

  1. Growing an Engaged Church – Installation and Blessing of Strategic Teams!  Team leaders have been identified for each one of the seven teams created for implementing our ambitious church-wide goals.  The teams have been formed from much discernment by the congregation through talks with Pastor Williams, the congregational survey and the strategic planning retreat. Each Sunday in January and February one of the teams will be installed and receive a blessing for their work during the worship service.We invite you to join us in blessing each of these ministry teams:

    Team                        Installation and Blessing Sunday

    Worship-Music-Arts   January 13, 2019

    Outreach-Mission      January 20, 2019

    Fun                           January 27, 2019

    Welcome                   February 3, 2019

    Social Justice            February 10, 2019

    Nurture                     February 17, 2019

    Kitchen-Hospitality     February 24, 2019

    Administrative            March 3, 2019

    Church Council, SPRC, Nominations, Trustees, & Finance           

    It is not too late to join a team! Throughout the season of Epiphany, commitment cards can be found on a table in the side Narthex.  Following prayerful consideration, fill out your card and turn it in during worship following the weekly installation litany.  Your information will be forwarded to the leaders of the team you select.

 

  1. Our Condolences to the Taylor Family.  Former long-time member, Katharine “Kathie” Taylor died on January 5, 2019 in Tinton Falls, NJ.  Her niece, Jan Taylor emailed to let us know of her passing.   Kathie would have been 99 years old at the end of February 2019!

The family is gathering stories about her life.  If you have any photos and/or stories to share about Kathie and her life at FUMC, please forward them to Jan Taylor, 524 North Market Street, Myerstown, PA  17067 or email her at jltalo@verizon.net

 

  1. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Interfaith Service.  Join us on Monday, January 21, 2019 at 1 PM at the First Congregational Church, (125 Elmer Street, Westfield) for a Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Interfaith Service.  We will march from the MLK Monument on the South Circle to the church before the service.  Gather at the Monument at 12:15 PM.  Bring a non-perishable food donation for the Westfield Food Pantry.

 

  1. District Superintendent Rev. Drew Dyson appointed to new extension ministryDrew A. Dyson has been appointed to an extension ministry as Executive Director of the Princeton Senior Resource Center effective March 19, 2019.

 

  1. Sang Won Doh has been appointed to Raritan Valley District SuperintendentSang-Won DohSang Won Doh is senior pastor at Calvary Korean UMC. He is currently serving Calvary Korean UMC in East Brunswick where his grew the congregation from 500 to 950 in worship. Previously, he served Monmouth Grace UMC in Eatontown where attendance grew from 110 to 300. As a result, he became the recipient of Denman Evangelism award in 2003. Sang Won Doh served as a member of Board of Ordain Ministry from 2000-2012 and Order of Elder Co-Chair from 2004-2008. He is currently serving the Chair of the Connectional Table Chair for GNJ. He is a turnaround spiritual leader.

 

  1. Adult Faith Development 

Join us Sunday mornings in January at 9 am in the Fellowship Room where we will go deeper into practical ways of being a welcoming and hospitable congregation. Come learn how to create a more just world where everyone can thrive.   See you there.  

  • Jan. 13th – A deeper look into creating a welcoming culture 
  • Jan. 20th – Dean Pratt – Understanding Other Faiths – A look at Judaism & Islam 
  • Jan. 27th – Special guest: Rev Dr Amy Jones – Family Promise and Hospitality. Who are some of our most vulnerable neighbors and how can we show them grace and hospitality? Come hear an update on the state of homelessness in Union County and the opportunities and challenges in serving families experiencing homelessness, as well as the social justice issues confronting us as we work to find solutions to family homelessness. Family Promise is a nonprofit agency serving families experiencing homelessness. FUMC is a host congregation for Family Promise-Union County’s emergency shelter program, providing a safe place for families to sleep.

Our upcoming topic in February:  Christianity in America

 

  1. Current Sermon Series & Mission Project

January: From Expectations to Reality.

Collecting Diapers in January (click here to read more): United Methodist churches throughout New Jersey recently partnered to collect more than 87,000 diapers (goal was 10,000) for low-income families with infants in the capital city. In New Jersey, one in three mothers struggle to provide enough diapers for her children. The diapers will be distributed at community birthday parties in 2019. The parties will celebrate one year olds and their families. Every child in diapers who attends will receive diapers. These ‘First Birthday Parties’ will be sponsored by the Maker’s Place, a new United Methodist initiative in Trenton, in partnership with the Children’s Home Society of New Jersey, along with other congregations and community partners. While celebrating important milestones for children, the parties will also provide resources to reduce Trenton’s high infant mortality rate. The first party will be on March 2, 2019, at Turning Point United Methodist Church, located at 15 South Broad Street, Trenton.

Upcoming Worship Series

February: Love in Action

 

  1. Youth News.  

There is no Youth Group this week! See you on Sunday, January 27th for Escape the Maze!

For our summer mission trip, we will be serving with The Philadelphia Project June 23rd-29th! Please contact Kylie Haskins at kyliewhaskins@gmail.com if you have any questions about the trip or are interested in signing up.

 

  1. Altar Flower Chart. The 2019 Flower Chart is posted on the wall outside the church office.  You are invited to sponsor flower arrangements ($45 per week) for our worship services each Sunday morning. Please sign up, then take an envelope for your payment and to indicate what reading you’d like to appear in the bulletin. Thank you for providing these beautiful tributes for our services.   You may take the flowers home, or leave them to be delivered to our homebound members.

 

  1. Join the Puzzle Club!  In the Fellowship Room closet are puzzles for all ages.  Take one home and enjoy doing it on long winter days or nights.  After you have finished, bring it back and get another one.  Have fun!

 

  1. Volunteers needed to help local families. FUMC is responsible for the Westfield Food Pantry, located at Holy Trinity School, every Tuesday from 9:15 to 11:15 AM.  Each Tuesday, 2-3 volunteers work at the panty providing a shopping cart full of groceries to about 7 families. 

We are in need of people willing to substitute when a permanently-scheduled volunteer is not able to work. If you are free on Tuesday mornings and interested to help out at the Food Pantry on a as-needed basis, please contact Joann Huber (908-313-3360; huberkj@aol.com)

 

Mark Your Calendar

  1. Family Promise.  We shall provide shelter, food and hospitality to families served by Family Promise of Union County the week of March 31 – April 7, 2019. Many volunteer opportunities will be required as we once again serve those less fortunate than ourselves.

Click here to sign up for the week of March 31 – April 7,2019. We need volunteers to make dinner, host dinner or stay overnight:

Two volunteers will be needed each night from 5:00-9:00 p.m. to serve and share dinner with our guests and to spend time with them in the evening. Two overnight volunteers will be needed from 9:00 p.m. to 7:00 a.m. 

Questions?  Contact Laura Gribbin at 908-654-8290 or Susan Gandy at 908-233-2389.

 

Members and Friends

Members & Friends is intended to communicate particular requests or needs of FUMC members or FUMC friends (e.g.  transportation needs for medical appointments, worship, etc., wheelchair available for donation, need for a live-in caregiver, etc.).  These postings should be concise and list a contact person.  Please contact the church office 908-233-4211 or email communications@fumcwestfield.org about your listing.

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FUMC Connect

Posted by on Jan 10, 2019

All FUMC Connect submissions should be emailed to communications@fumcwestfield.org

 

Get Connected

Gratitude is defined as the quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness (Dictionary.com).                                       

I am full of gratitude because of the level of commitment and support given by this congregation since my appointment to First United Methodist Church Westfield beginning July 1, 2018. You continue to amaze me, and I thank God for your generosity of love.

On last Sunday, FUMC’s strategic plan received 75 commitment cards with a large handful of congregants committing to multiple teams. As a church, we are committed to growing an engaged church. In your own time, please thank God for such committed sisters and brothers in Christ. There is still time to make your commitment. Click here fill out your commitment card electronically.

Also, on this past Tuesday, our finance team mailed a check to the Greater New Jersey Annual Conference for the full amount of our Shared Ministry obligation. Moreover, we did not have to use money from the endowment, but because you were faithful in your pledges and sacrificial in your above and beyond giving, we were able to fully participate in the United Methodist connectional system of mission and ministry as well as come within $2,000 of breaking even for the 2018 budget.

Lastly, our average worship attendance grew nearly 6.5% from 2018 to 2019 (109 to 116 per week). Click here to see attendance by week. Average weekly attendance is not the only barometer of growing an engaged church. To that end, continue to share stories about FUMC’s engagement. How are we journeying alongside of each other? How are we spreading the love of Jesus? How are we impacting lives?

I believe in having a healthy level of pride, and I am proud to serve as a servant-leader at FUMC.

Thank you for sharing the vision of growing an engaged church,

William

 

Current Happenings

  1. Growing an Engaged Church – Installation and Blessing of Strategic Teams!  Team leaders have been identified for each one of the seven teams created for implementing our ambitious church-wide goals.  The teams have been formed from much discernment by the congregation through talks with Pastor Williams, the congregational survey and the strategic planning retreat. Each Sunday in January and February one of the teams will be installed and receive a blessing for their work during the worship service.

We invite you to join us in blessing each of these ministry teams:

Team                        Installation and Blessing Sunday

Worship-Music-Arts   January 13, 2019

Outreach-Mission      January 20, 2019

Fun                           January 27, 2019

Welcome                   February 3, 2019

Social Justice            February 10, 2019

Nurture                     February 17, 2019

Kitchen-Hospitality     February 24, 2019

Administrative            March 3, 2019

Church Council, SPRC, Nominations, Trustees, & Finance           

It is not too late to join a team! Throughout the season of Epiphany, commitment cards can be found on a table in the side Narthex.  Following prayerful consideration, fill out your card and turn it in during worship following the weekly installation litany.  Your information will be forwarded to the leaders of the team you select.

 

  1. District Superintendent Rev. Drew Dyson appointed to new extension ministryDrew A. Dyson has been appointed to an extension ministry as Executive Director of the Princeton Senior Resource Center effective March 19, 2019.

 

  1. Sang Won Doh has been appointed to Raritan Valley District SuperintendentSang Won Doh is senior pastor at Calvary Korean UMC. He is currently serving Calvary Korean UMC in East Brunswick where his grew the congregation from 500 to 950 in worship. Previously, he served Monmouth Grace UMC in Eatontown where attendance grew from 110 to 300. As a result, he became the recipient of Denman Evangelism award in 2003. Sang Won Doh served as a member of Board of Ordain Ministry from 2000-2012 and Order of Elder Co-Chair from 2004-2008. He is currently serving the Chair of the Connectional Table Chair for GNJ. He is a turnaround spiritual leader.

 

  1. Adult Faith Development 

Join us Sunday mornings in January at 9 am in the Fellowship Room where we will go deeper into practical ways of being a welcoming and hospitable congregation. Come learn how to create a more just world where everyone can thrive.   See you there.  

  • Jan. 13th – A deeper look into creating a welcoming culture 
  • Jan. 20th – Dean Pratt – Understanding Other Faiths – A look at Judaism & Islam 
  • Jan. 27th – Special guest: Rev Dr Amy Jones – Family Promise and Hospitality. Who are some of our most vulnerable neighbors and how can we show them grace and hospitality? Come hear an update on the state of homelessness in Union County and the opportunities and challenges in serving families experiencing homelessness, as well as the social justice issues confronting us as we work to find solutions to family homelessness. Family Promise is a nonprofit agency serving families experiencing homelessness. FUMC is a host congregation for Family Promise-Union County’s emergency shelter program, providing a safe place for families to sleep.

 

  1. Current Sermon Series & Mission Project

January: From Expectations to Reality.

Collecting Diapers in January (click here to read more): United Methodist churches throughout New Jersey recently partnered to collect more than 87,000 diapers (goal was 10,000) for low-income families with infants in the capital city. In New Jersey, one in three mothers struggle to provide enough diapers for her children. The diapers will be distributed at community birthday parties in 2019. The parties will celebrate one year olds and their families. Every child in diapers who attends will receive diapers. These ‘First Birthday Parties’ will be sponsored by the Maker’s Place, a new United Methodist initiative in Trenton, in partnership with the Children’s Home Society of New Jersey, along with other congregations and community partners. While celebrating important milestones for children, the parties will also provide resources to reduce Trenton’s high infant mortality rate. The first party will be on March 2, 2019, at Turning Point United Methodist Church, located at 15 South Broad Street, Trenton.

Upcoming Worship Series

February: Love in Action

 

  1. Youth News.  This Sunday at Youth Group we’ll be playing Grog and making desserts for the Free Meals Program! Join us in the Loft from 5:30-7:30 PM, and please bring $3 for dinner.

For our summer mission trip, we will be serving with The Philadelphia Project June 23rd-29th! Please contact Kylie Haskins at kyliewhaskins@gmail.com if you have any questions about the trip or are interested in signing up!

 

  1. FUMC trip to a NJ Devils game! Come join us on February 9th @1PM as the NJ Devils play the Minnesota Wild at the Prudential Center!  Tickets are $50 each. Contact Lauren Kolaya after services or via email/phone. lyco97@aol.com or 908-962-0186 (feel free to text!). Tickets will be on sale until January 13th. 

 

Mark Your Calendar

  1. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Interfaith Service.  Join us on Monday, January 21, 2019 at 1 PM at the First Congregational Church, (125 Elmer Street, Westfield) for a Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Interfaith Service.  We will march from the MLK Monument on the South Circle to the church before the service.  Gather at the Monument at 12:15 PM.  Bring a non-perishable food donation for the Westfield Food Pantry.

 

Members and Friends

  1. Support the Meixner Family.  Jeannie Dillon Meixner passed away on September 28, 2018 after a long, hard fight with cancer. A GoFundMe page has been set up in her honor, so please  consider giving in support of the Meixner family. You can click here to go to the page.

 

Members & Friends is intended to communicate particular requests or needs of FUMC members or FUMC friends (e.g.  transportation needs for medical appointments, worship, etc., wheelchair available for donation, need for a live-in caregiver, etc.).  These postings should be concise and list a contact person.  Please contact the church office 908-233-4211 or email communications@fumcwestfield.org about your listing.

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FUMC Connect

Posted by on Jan 4, 2019

All FUMC Connect submissions should be emailed to communications@fumcwestfield.org

 

Get Connected

This Sunday, January 6, 2019, is Strategic Team Commitment Sunday

When examining our church and community from the scriptural idea that we are children of God, then the African proverb: it takes a village to raise a child is apropos. On Sunday, January 6, 2019. we will unite under the common themes within FUMC’s strategic plan in order to grow, spiritually, our church and community. Click here to view the team descriptions. The new strategic teams are:

  • Fun Team
  • Kitchen/Hospitality Team
  • Outreach Team
  • Nurturing Team
  • Social Justice Team
  • Welcome Team
  • Worship, Music, and Arts Team

By itself, these teams only provide a little towards the community and church’s overall spiritual growth. However, when these teams are linked, build on each other, and create entry and exit pathways for church and community members to get involved, then a beautiful mosaic of church life is developed.

The result: FUMC is a place where people want to be

These teams are just words in an e-mail without you bringing life, creativity, and faithfulness to them; growing them into vital and productive teams. Beginning 2019, please consider committing to a team.

whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. ~ 2 Corinthians 9:6 (NIV)

Please discern your role in implementing our Strategic Plan (3 options):

  1. Lead a team
  2. Serve on a team
  3. Make yourself available to help with a project when called upon by a team, but not be an official member of the team?

Click here to view the team descriptions, and click here fill out your commitment card electronically. Or pick up a green commitment card in church – placed in various locations around the church.

It will take all of us to sow generously seeds of prayers, time, witness, and finances for FUMC to reach these ambitious but achievable goals in our strategic plan.

We appreciate your dedication to our church!

~ Strategic Planning Team: Dean, Elaine, Joann, Kirk, Kylie, Marcee, Rodney, and William

 

Current Sermon Series & Mission Project

January: From Expectations to Reality.

Collecting Diapers in January: United Methodist churches throughout New Jersey recently partnered to collect more than 87,000 diapers (goal was 10,000) for low-income families with infants in the capital city. In New Jersey, one in three mothers struggle to provide enough diapers for her children. The diapers will be distributed at community birthday parties in 2019. The parties will celebrate one year olds and their families. Every child in diapers who attends will receive diapers. These ‘First Birthday Parties’ will be sponsored by the Maker’s Place, a new United Methodist initiative in Trenton, in partnership with the Children’s Home Society of New Jersey, along with other congregations and community partners. While celebrating important milestones for children, the parties will also provide resources to reduce Trenton’s high infant mortality rate. The first party will be on March 2, 2019, at Turning Point United Methodist Church, located at 15 South Broad Street, Trenton.

 

Upcoming Worship Series

February: Love in Action

 

Current Happenings

  1. Adult Faith Development

Join us Sunday mornings in January at 9 am in the Fellowship Room where we will go deeper into practical ways of being a welcoming and hospitable congregation. Come learn how to create a more just world where everyone can thrive.   See you there.

  • Jan. 4th –  What is Culture?  A guided conversation regarding your personal culture and our congregational culture. 
  • Jan. 13th – A deeper look into creating a welcoming culture 
  • Jan. 20th – Dean Pratt – Understanding Other Faiths – A look at Judaism & Islam 
  • Jan. 27th – Special guest: Rev Dr Amy Jones – Family Promise.  

 

  1. Can you help this SUNDAY after worship? We would like to undecorate the Sanctuary immediately after Church THIS SUNDAY, January 6th. Volunteers are asked to stay and help take down decorations.  It should take less than an hour if we get enough folks to help.
  2. Youth News. YOUTH GROUP IS BACK! Join us in the Loft this Sunday from 5:30-7:30 PM for our New Year’s Kickoff Party! Please bring $3 for dinner.

For our summer mission trip, we will be serving with The Philadelphia Project June 23rd-29th! Click here to view the notes from our first meeting, and please contact Kylie Haskins at kyliewhaskins@gmail.com if you have any questions about the trip or are interested in signing up!

 

Mark Your Calendar

  1. FUMC trip to a NJ Devils game! Come join us on February 9th @1PM as the NJ Devils play the Minnesota Wild at the Prudential Center!  Tickets are $50 each. Contact Lauren Kolaya after services or via email/phone. lyco97@aol.com or 908-962-0186 (feel free to text!). Tickets will be on sale until January 13th. 

 

Members and Friends

 

Members & Friends is intended to communicate particular requests or needs of FUMC members or FUMC friends (e.g.  transportation needs for medical appointments, worship, etc., wheelchair available for donation, need for a live-in caregiver, etc.).  These postings should be concise and list a contact person.  Please contact the church office 908-233-4211 or email communications@fumcwestfield.org about your listing.

Read More

FUMC Connect

Posted by on Dec 13, 2018

All FUMC Connect submissions should be emailed to communications@fumcwestfield.org

 

Get Connected

Growing an Engaged Church

I celebrated six months of ministry with you earlier this month. I praise God for the opportunity to worship and serve alongside of you in this servant leader position. Thank you for your prayers. Part of the pastoral transition process for the Greater New Jersey Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church includes “checking-in” conversations with the pastor and SPRC. There are more than a dozen evaluative areas on the report we send back to the conference once a quarter for the next 18 months. I want to share a copy of the report with you (click here). I would love your feedback on any of the evaluative areas. I haven’t mentioned it in a while, but you’re always invited to schedule a meeting with me. Just e-mail williamscalendarfumc@gmail.com, a link to my calendar will be sent to you via automatic reply. You’re also invited to share conversation with the 2019 SPRC team: Traci Basaman, Peter Pantalena, Randy Greasham, Joann Couture, Cheryl Klimek, Mark Froehlich, Ben Lohmann, Joann Huber, Joy Kalata, and Ray Barber. As we grow an engaged church, my greater expectations for our ministry together is to have consistent communication.

 

Worship

Praise God! Average worship attendance is up year over year. If you aren’t a regular attendee to weekly worship, I ask that you reconsider. The vitality of our church depends on all of us.

The season of Advent serves as the beginning of the Christian calendar, remembers the actions leading up to the birth of Jesus, and reminds us to live as those who are prepared for the second coming of Jesus. It’s through these meanings of the season that we find relevance for us today, and if we allow it, greater expectations for our lives.

During the month of December, we are often lured into higher acts of consumerism, to believe that our relationships are validated through indulgence, and onto faux pathways that promise a better you. We don’t always realize the greater expectations until we’ve already given into the lure of society’s great expectations.Greater Expectations is about realizing God’s plan for living your life. As we enter a new Christian year and end a calendar year, I invite you to reflect on these questions that will shed light on God’s plan for living your life:

  • Sunday, December 16th: Can you take small steps in the midst of life changing decisions? Why or why not? Click here to view the video for this Sunday’s worship theme.
  • Sunday, December 23rd: How can you give gifts that keep on giving?
  • Monday, December 24th: Where is your treasurer?
  • Sunday, December 30th: What really matters the most?

As always, the house of the Lord is open daily if you need inspiration and rejuvenation in the journey. See you soon.

~ Rev. Williams

 

Current Sermon Series

Advent: Greater Expectations – God’s Plan For Your Living

  • Step 1 – Get Motivated for Change (Dec. 2nd)
  • Step 2 – Get Outside Your Comfort Zone (Dec. 9th)
  • Step 3 – Always Be In Awe (Dec. 16th) In preparation, listen to the lyrics of this video.
  • Step 4 – Impact Others (Dec 23rd)
  • Step 5 – Enjoy The Moment (Dec. 24th
  • Step 6 – Remember What Really Matters (Dec. 30th)

Holy Communion each Sunday

 

Upcoming Worship Series

January: From Expectations to Reality.

 

Christmas in Westfield

The website www.ChristmasInWestield.com is live. Visit and share.

 

Christmas Season Experiences

  • Christmas Carols each Sunday beginning 10 minutes before worship.
  • December 16th –   Christmas Pageant (in worship) along with creation of luminaries for Blue Christmas
  • December 16th –   Rev. Williams will preach at the UECF Worship Service at 6:30 pm
  • December 21st –   Blue Christmas Worship Service (candle lighting available at 4:00 pm, service 6:30-7:00)
  • December 22nd – Brass & Carols Outside Worship Service at PNC Plaza (across from the church) 11:00 am
  • Christmas Eve Services (free advance tickets suggested, more information to come***):
    •  *New* 10:00 am – Contemporary with Holy Communion *New*
    • 5:00 pm – Family services with Birthday Cake for Jesus
    • 7:00 pm – Traditional with Holy Communion & Candlelight Service
    • 11:00 pm – Traditional with Candle Light Service
    • ***Even though it’s free, why do I need advanced tickets? True. We are trying something new. We want to ensure there is enough seats for everyone to enjoy Christmas Eve worship as a family. We would appreciate you taking advantage of the Eventbrite option, which is available through our specialized Community Christmas websiteChristmasInWestfield. However, tickets will also be available at the door, after worship on Sundays in December, and in the office for pickup.
  • December 30th –   Blessing of the Gifts. Adult and children alike, bring a gift you received from Christmas into worship as a sign of God’s blessings upon all of God’s gifts. Our 5th Sunday children’s worship team will lead worship on this day

 

Current Happenings

  1. Advent Chain.  For the past two Sundays members and visitors have participated in a devotional activity for Advent by completing sentences on paper strips that have been connected together in a prayer chain expressing hopes for our families, neighbors, church and the world and lifting up our gratitude for the acts of love we show and see in our daily walk of life.  The devotional activity is open to all each week and will be in place through Christmas Eve.  The prayer chain is growing and will be on display in the sanctuary through Epiphany Sunday on January 6th.  

This week, the prayer chain sentence to complete focuses upon JOY – “I find joy in …”

 

  1. Your Hands Are Needed. Last Sunday, we blessed the prayer shawl hats that were knitted by the prayer shawl team. FUMC will give these hats to Blue Christmas worshippers on Friday, December 21, 2018 at the 6:30 pm service. Thank you for participating in the blessing of the hats via liturgy and personal prayers. Now, we ask that you touch the hats with an added blessing. Healing touches are a critical act of our faith. These hats will be stationed in the lobby and fellowship room on this upcoming Sunday. Please touch the hats. No large grandiose act is needed, just a small simple touch and a desire in your heart that this small act of faith will heal someone else. Praise God & thank you!

 

  1. Blue Christmas Service.  The Blue Christmas – A Service of Remembrance and Hope (December 21) is a recognition that the holiday season is not always bright and merry for all.  Memories of grief, loss, and separation can overwhelm us.  As such, we invite all who are able to join us for worship – those who are in need of support and those who are able to give support – to come and remember what we have lost in the context of hope for renewal and faith in Jesus Christ.  

This is a ministry for our whole community.  In worship on the 9th, we blessed hats made by the prayer shawl group to give to those who attend Blue Christmas service and in worship on the 16th we will make and bless luminary for use at the service and on Christmas Eve.  A call has been issued for drivers to assist fellow congregants in need of transportation to attend the service; contact Margo Bradley to help.

There are a few additional helping hands needed the day of the service as prayer partners during the open prayer time (4-6pm), as ushers before, during and after the service (6-8pm).  Opportunities to help range from 30 minute to 60 minute time commitments. If you are able to support the Blue Christmas worship ministry on December 21, please sign up at this link: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/9040C4AA5AC2CA75-blue

 

  1. Blue Christmas Service – Do you need a ride? – Can you give a ride?  There will be a Blue Christmas worship service – a service of Remembrance and Hope, on Friday, December 21 at 6:30 PM.  We want everyone who is interested to be able to attend.  Do you need a ride? or Can you drive a fellow parishioner to the service?  Please contact Margo Bradley at 706-587-2194 (I also have text) or at mbradley246@comcast.net.  Thank You!

 

  1. Our Journey to the Strategic Plan Continues – Commitment Sunday is January 6, 2019

On Sunday, January 6, 2019, I invite you to make a commitment to joining one or two of the new strategic teams:

  • Fun Team
  • Kitchen/Hospitality Team
  • Outreach Team
  • Nurturing Team
  • Social Justice Team
  • Welcome Team
  • Worship, Music, and Arts Team

By itself, these teams only provide a little towards the church’s overall growth. But we believe, when these teams are linked, build on each other, and create entry and exit pathways for church and community members to get involved, then a beautiful mosaic of church life is developed, and FUMC is a place where people want to be.

These teams are just words in an e-mail without you bringing life, creativity, and faithfulness to them; growing them into vital and productive teams. Beginning 2019, please consider committing to a team.

whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. ~ 2 Corinthians 9:6 (NIV)

We will be blessed by your thoughtfulness. Consider the next verse of the aforementioned 2 Corinthians chapter 9 bible passage. Read The Message version of verse 7,

I want each of you to take plenty of time to think it over, and make up your own mind what you will give. That will protect you against sob stories and arm-twisting. God loves it when the giver delights in the giving.

During this season, please discern your role in implementing our Strategic Plan (3 options):

  1. Lead a team
  2. Serve on a team
  3. Make yourself available to help with a project when called upon by a team, but not be an official member of the team?

We don’t want to “sell” you on this plan but want you to earnestly believe in your heart that your gifts and talents are a necessary piece to our puzzle.

It will take all of us to sow generously seeds of prayers, time, witness, and finances for FUMC to reach these ambitious but achievable goals in our strategic plan.

We invite you to prayerfully consider joining one of our teams at FUMC Westfield. Click here to view the team descriptions, and click here fill out your commitment card electronically. Or pick up a green commitment card in church – placed in various locations around the church.

We appreciate your dedication to our church!

~ Strategic Planning Team: Dean, Elaine, Joann, Kirk, Kylie, Marcee, Rodney, and William

 

  1. FUMC’s newest Lay Servant

Elaine Pratt recently completed her Lay Servant courses. With my blessing, she is now FUMC’s newest Lay Servant. She has written our Advent devotionals on the back of each Sunday’s bulletin.

What is a Lay Servant? Click here For more information. After reading, if you too are interested in helping lead FUMC as a Lay Servant, please e-mail me.

 

  1. Adult Faith Development 

Are you ready for Advent?  Are you in anticipation of the birth and rebirth of Jesus Christ in our lives?  Let’s gather Sunday morning at 9 am to discuss the following Advent themes:

  • Sunday December 16 (Advent Week 3) – Always Be in Awe
  • Sunday December 23 (Advent Week 4) – Impact Others                                  

Sponsored by the Adult Faith Development Team – Traci Basaman, Lynn Petrino, Bob Anderson, and Dean Pratt

 

  1. Youth News.  This Sunday is our last Youth Group of 2018! Join us in the Loft from 5:30-7:30 PM for our Christmas Party! Christmas attire is greatly encouraged, please bring $3 for dinner.

For our summer mission trip, we will be serving with The Philadelphia Project June 23rd-29th! Click here to view the notes from our meeting on Sunday, and please contact Kylie Haskins at kyliewhaskins@gmail.com if you have any questions about the trip or are interested in signing up!

 

  1. Rahway Prison Donation Needs.  We will be collecting paperback religious/spirituality books (paperback only!!), Christmas cards for the men to send and any blank cards or birthday cards with envelopes. They do NOT need any calendars this year. 

    There will be a bin next to the elevator. No Christmas cards past 12/16 please. Contact Connie Palmer with questions.

 

  1. Just For Your Information: Rev. Williams is a Neighborhood Co-Captain in region 4 of Ward 1.  

 

  1. UMCOR Flood Buckets.New Dover UMC in Edison is now the approved UMCOR Central New Jersey Hub for Hurricane Flood Bucket collection. Completed buckets or supplies can be dropped off at the church mornings, Monday through Friday. Please call the church office at 732-381-9478, or Rev. Chuck Coblentz at 609-937-4565, to ensure someone is available to receive the buckets/supplies, or to schedule a drop-off during off-hours. Click here

 

  1. Christmas Caroling to FUMC HomeboundCome join in spreading the Christmas Spirit by caroling to our FUMC Homebound on Saturday, December 15. We will leave the Church at 12:30PM and return in plenty of time for the 3:00PM rehearsal for those participating in the Christmas Show to be held at 4PM.  All are welcome…adults, children, singers and non-singers.   Please let Gloria Brodersen (908-322-2038)know if you are planning to participate so we can make transportation arrangements.  Don’t miss out on the fun!

 

  1. Community Christmas Show at FUMC. Renew YOUR Holiday Spirit at the FUMC Community Christmas Show on Saturday, December 15th  at 4 PM in the Sanctuary.  Free Admission.

 

  1. Heifer Project International Market – December 15, 16 & 23.Can’t think of ideas for Christmas presents?  Everybody have everything they need?  If that’s the case, think about buying an animal from Heifer Project International.  Share the gift of hope for hungry families across the globe.  Perfect gifts for secretaries, bosses, aunts with too much money, for holiday hostesses and even your kids to show them how much you care about families around the world! Bonny Chopey and friends will be there to help you gift animals on Sundays, December 16 and 23  before and after worship, December 15th during the Christmas Concert in the waiting area outside the church office.

 

  1. Annual Cookie Walk—December 16. Our Annual Cookie Walk will take place on Sunday, December 16th in the Fellowship Room.  Shoppers will purchase a  container and have the opportunity to fill it with home-baked goodies.  This is a great way to get a variety of cookies for the holiday!  For more information or to donate cookies call Sue Gandy at 908-233-2389 or Mary-Lou Jackson  at 908-233-4678. Proceeds from this year’s Cookie Walk will benefit Family Promise.

 

  1. Sanctuary Holiday Decorations. We look forward to the Holiday Season when we can worship and enjoy the special beauty of our decorated Sanctuary. We especially enjoy the traditional and colorful Poinsettias in the Altar area, which will be distributed to our shut-ins after December 25th.  If you would like the opportunity to honor or remember loved ones with the purchase of Altar decorations and Poinsettias, please complete the form below and bring or mail it to our Church office enclosed with your donation by December 16th.  (Checks may be made out to “FUMC, Holiday Decorations”).  Plans are to list the names of those being honored or remembered in the Christmas Bulletin.  Thank you.
 
 

Holiday Sanctuary Decorations Form

(For accuracy, please clearly print the following information)

 

In Honor of(Name):_____________________________________________

In Memory of (Deceased Name):__________________________________

Donation from:________________________________________________

Amount Enclosed $_________

 

 
 

 

Mark Your Calendar

  1. FUMC trip to a NJ Devils game! Are you looking for a gift for a hockey fan? Then come join us on February 9th @1PM as the NJ Devils play the Minnesota Wild at the Prudential Center!  Tickets are $50 each. Contact Lauren Kolaya after services or via email/phone. lyco97@aol.com or 908-962-0186 (feel free to text!). Tickets will be on sale until January 13th. 

 

Members and Friends

  1. Support the Meixner Family.  Jeannie Dillon Meixner passed away on September 28, 2018 after a long, hard fight with cancer. A GoFundMe page has been set up in her honor, so please  consider giving in support of the Meixner family. You can click here to go to the page.

Members & Friends is intended to communicate particular requests or needs of FUMC members or FUMC friends (e.g.  transportation needs for medical appointments, worship, etc., wheelchair available for donation, need for a live-in caregiver, etc.).  These postings should be concise and list a contact person.  Please contact the church office 908-233-4211 or email communications@fumcwestfield.org about your listing.

Read More

FUMC Connect

Posted by on Dec 6, 2018

All FUMC Connect submissions should be emailed to communications@fumcwestfield.org

 

Get Connected

 

Christmas in Westfield

The website www.ChristmasInWestfield.com is live. Visit and share!

 

Christmas Season Experiences

  • Christmas Carols each Sunday beginning 10 minutes before worship.
  • December 9th –    Blessing of the Prayer Shawl’s knitted hats for Blue Christmas (in worship)
  • December 15th – Community Christmas Show (4:00 pm)
  • December 16th – Christmas Pageant (in worship) along with creation of luminaries for Blue Christmas
  • December 16th – Rev. Williams will preach at the UECF Worship Service at 4:45 pm
  • December 21st – Blue Christmas Worship Service (candle lighting available at 4:00 pm, service 6:30-7:00)
  • Christmas Eve Services (free advance tickets suggested)
    •  *New* 10:00 am – Contemporary with Holy Communion *New*
    • 5:00 pm – Family services with Birthday Cake for Jesus
    •  7:00 pm – Traditional with Holy Communion & Candlelight Service
    •  11:00 pm – Traditional with Candle Light Service

***Even though it’s free, why do I need advanced tickets?

True. We are trying something new. We want to ensure there is enough seats for everyone to enjoy Christmas Eve worship as a family. We would appreciate you taking advantage of the Eventbrite option, which will be made available through www.ChristmasInWestfield.com. However, tickets will also be available at the door, after worship on Sundays in December, and in the office for pickup.

  • December 30th – Blessing of the Gifts. Adult and children alike, bring a gift you received from Christmas into worship as a sign of God’s blessings upon all of God’s gifts. Our 5th Sunday children’s worship team will lead worship on this day

 

Current Happenings

  1. Advent Chain.  Each Sunday in Advent and on Christmas Eve we invite you to participate in our church-wide Advent Prayer Chain Devotional.  We will provide you with strips of paper on which to complete a sentence that expresses your gratitude for God’s presence, your commitment to God’s calling, or asks prayers of petition.  Each Sunday will have a specific sentence starter inspired by the advent words of Hope, Love, Joy, and Peace in preparation for Christmas Eve.  For questions or to help with this devotional program by constructing and displaying the chain, contact Marcee Rogers.

 

  1. FUMC Christmas Giving Tree.  The holidays are upon us and the Christmas Giving Tree is bursting with need!  The St. Joseph Social Service Center has asked for our generosity again this year.  We have accepted 50 names of people that are hoping for some warm clothing this holiday season.  The tree is set up in the Narthex (many thanks to the Men’s Prayer Group for setting up the tree!) and decorated (many thanks to the Junior Youth Group!) Each ornament lists the name, age, gender and size for the person listed.  As you are able, please select an ornament, purchase the clothing and return it unwrapped. Please return the clothing in a gift bag with tissue paper and staple the ornament to the outside of the bag by Sunday, December 9, 2018.  If you have any large Christmas bags or tissue paper the Center is asking for those as well. Please contact Barbara Heifetz at barbara.heifetz@lcc.culturalcare.com  or 908-397-9658 with any questions. If you prefer to make a cash donation you can contact Barbara and she will purchase the clothing. Thank you for your generosity.

 

  1. Looking for Drivers for the Evening of Friday, December 21.  There will be a Blue Christmas worship service – a service of Remembrance and Hope, on Friday, December 21 at 6:30 PM.  We want everyone who is interested to be able to attend.  Can you drive a fellow parishioner to the service?  If you can, please contact Margo Bradley at 706-587-2194 (I also have text) or at mbradley246@comcast.net.  Your help will be greatly appreciated!  Thank You!

 

  1. FUMC’s newest Lay Servant

Elaine Pratt recently completed her Lay Servant courses. With my blessing, she is now FUMC’s newest Lay Servant. What is a Lay Servant? Click here For more information. After reading, if you too are interested in helping lead FUMC as a Lay Servant, please e-mail me.

 

  1. Adult Faith Development 

Are you ready for Advent?  Are you in anticipation of the birth and rebirth of Jesus Christ in our lives?  Let’s gather Sunday morning at 9 am to discuss the following Advent themes:

  • Sunday, December 9 (Advent Week 2) – Get Outside Your Comfort Zone       
  • Sunday December 16 (Advent Week 3) – Always Be in Awe
  • Sunday December 23 (Advent Week 4) – Impact Others                                  

Sponsored by the Adult Faith Development Team – Traci Basaman, Lynn Petrino, Bob Anderson, and Dean Pratt

 

  1. Youth News. We’ll be having a mission trip interest meeting this Sunday, December 9th at 5:00 PM before Youth Group. Please join us if you’re interested in serving with us at The Philadelphia Project this summer!  

 This Sunday at Youth Group we’re making desserts for the Free Meals Program and playing Grog! Join us in the Loft from 5:30-7:30 PM, and please bring $3 for dinner.

 

  1. Rahway Prison Donation Needs.  We will be collecting paperback religious/spirituality books (paperback only!!), Christmas cards for the men to send and any blank cards or birthday cards with envelopes. They do NOT need any calendars this year. 

    There will be a bin next to the elevator. No Christmas cards past 12/16 please. Contact Connie Palmer with questions.

 

  1. UMCOR Flood Buckets. New Dover UMC in Edison is now the approved UMCOR Central New Jersey Hub for Hurricane Flood Bucket collection. Completed buckets or supplies can be dropped off at the church mornings, Monday through Friday. Please call the church office at 732-381-9478, or Rev. Chuck Coblentz at 609-937-4565, to ensure someone is available to receive the buckets/supplies, or to schedule a drop-off during off-hours. Click here

 

  1. Men’s Prayer Group.  Our Men’s Prayer Group meets on Tuesday evenings from 7:30 pm to 9 pm in room 218 at the church and is also virtual via web conferencing – so you can participate wherever you are!  Come ready to share, help each other and make new friends!  This group will be led initially by Dean Pratt and Brian Mulvey.  

 

  1. Sanctuary Holiday Decorations. We look forward to the Holiday Season when we can worship and enjoy the special beauty of our decorated Sanctuary. We especially enjoy the traditional and colorful Poinsettias in the Altar area, which will be distributed to our shut-ins after December 25th.  If you would like the opportunity to honor or remember loved ones with the purchase of Altar decorations and Poinsettias, please complete the form below and bring or mail it to our Church office enclosed with your donation by December 16th.  (Checks may be made out to “FUMC, Holiday Decorations”).  Plans are to list the names of those being honored or remembered in the Christmas Bulletin.  Thank you.
 
 

Holiday Sanctuary Decorations Form

(For accuracy, please clearly print the following information)

 

In Honor of(Name):_____________________________________________

In Memory of (Deceased Name):__________________________________

Donation from:________________________________________________

Amount Enclosed $_________

 

 
 

 

Mark Your Calendar

  1. Christmas Caroling to FUMC Homebound.  Come join in spreading the Christmas Spirit by caroling to our FUMC Homebound on Saturday, December 15. We will leave the Church at 12:30PM and return in plenty of time for the 3:00PM rehearsal for those participating in the Christmas Show to be held at 4PM.  All are welcome…adults, children, singers and non-singers.   Please let Gloria Brodersen (908-322-2038)know if you are planning to participate so we can make transportation arrangements.  Don’t miss out on the fun!

 

  1. FUMC trip to a NJ Devils game! Are you looking for a gift for a hockey fan? Then come join us on February 9th @1PM as the NJ Devils play the Minnesota Wild at the Prudential Center!  Tickets are $50 each. Contact Lauren Kolaya after services or via email/phone. lyco97@aol.com or 908-962-0186 (feel free to text!). Tickets will be on sale until January 13th. 

 

  1. Santa Breakfast – December 15.  Join us for our annual Santa Claus breakfast on Saturday, December 15th from 10 a.m. until 12 noon in the Fellowship Room. There will be a light breakfast, crafts, music, stories and a visit with a very special guest fit for the season!!  The cost is $8.00 per person (Children 1 and under are free). Please sign up by December 11th outside the church office.  Don’t forget to bring your camera!  If you have any other questions, please contact Kathleen Bruns-Meyers or call the church office at 908-233-4211. 

 

  1. Community Christmas Show at FUMC. Renew YOUR Holiday Spirit at the FUMC Community Christmas Show on Saturday, December 15th  at 4 PM in the Sanctuary.  Free Admission.

 

  1. Refreshments needed for Christmas Show!  We are looking for donations of cookies, fruit or snacks for a Fellowship Time after our Christmas show. Please contact Carolyn Milhiser milhiser@outlook.com, if you can donate.  Thank you!

 

  1. Annual Cookie Walk—December 16.  Our Annual Cookie Walk will take place on Sunday, December 16th in the Fellowship Room.  Bakers needed and shoppers welcome!  On December 16, shoppers will purchase a  container and have the opportunity to fill it with home-baked goodies.  This is a great way to get a variety of cookies for the holiday!  For more information or to donate cookies call Sue Gandy at 908-233-2389 or Mary-Lou Jackson  at 908-233-4678. Proceeds from this year’s Cookie Walk will benefit Family Promise.

 

  1. Heifer Project International Market – December 15, 16 & 23Can’t think of ideas for Christmas presents?  Everybody have everything they need?  If that’s the case, think about buying an animal from Heifer Project International.  Share the gift of hope for hungry families across the globe.  Perfect gifts for secretaries, bosses, aunts with too much money, for holiday hostesses and even your kids to show them how much you care about families around the world! Bonny Chopey and friends will be there to help you gift animals on Sundays, December 16 and 23  before and after worship, December 15th during the Christmas Concert in the waiting area outside the church office.

 

Members and Friends

  1. Support the Meixner Family.  Jeannie Dillon Meixner passed away on September 28, 2018 after a long, hard fight with cancer. A GoFundMe page has been set up in her honor, so please  consider giving in support of the Meixner family. You can click here to go to the page.

 

Members & Friends is intended to communicate particular requests or needs of FUMC members or FUMC friends (e.g.  transportation needs for medical appointments, worship, etc., wheelchair available for donation, need for a live-in caregiver, etc.).  These postings should be concise and list a contact person.  Please contact the church office 908-233-4211 or email communications@fumcwestfield.org about your listing.

Read More

FUMC Connect

Posted by on Nov 29, 2018

All FUMC Connect submissions should be emailed to communications@fumcwestfield.org

 

Get Connected

Our Journey to the Strategic Plan

On this past Monday, Church Council unanimously voted on FUMC’s strategic plan. Let’s take time to celebrate (queue song: Celebration by Kool & The Gang).

Outside of excitement and hope, some of the feedback included:

  1. FUMC needs a consistent plan to help see themselves as part of the teams
  2. The plan is an ambitious plan that requires some quick wins
  3. The plan requires some prioritization of goals

There are 7 teams to either be created and/or strengthened that will make decisions in love from the outgrowth of our core values of Service, Openness, and Welcome:

Here are the teams

  • Fun Team
  • Kitchen/Hospitality Team
  • Outreach Team
  • Nurturing Team
  • Social Justice Team
  • Welcome Team 
  • Worship, Music, and Arts Team

I will extrapolate more during Sunday’s Lunch and Learn; for now, I’d like to cast this scriptural vision:

whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. ~ 2 Corinthians 9:6,

It will take all of use to generously sow seeds of prayers, time, witness, and finances for FUMC to reach these ambitious but achievable goals. Please begin to consider 1 – 2 areas in which you will serve.

I shared last week these goals with some additional commentary.

Goal 1. Have a mission-minded mindset by Thanksgiving 2019

This means going on an international mission trip by 2020, developing strong local mission projects (e.g. habitat for humanity, etc.), and translating the annual #GivingTuesday post thanksgiving celebration into hands-on missions in Westfield.

Goal 2.  Immediately live into our vision: Do Justice. Love Mercy. Walk Humbly with God

This means developing a social justice team who holds quarterly training seminars on several issues of justice within our region, including in year 1 educating the congregation on what it means to be a reconciling ministries congregation, so that by year 2 (2020) FUMC officially begins the  reconciling ministries discernment process with the goal of becoming a reconciling congregation by 2021.

Goal 3. Rethink what it means to worship God

This means growing our current worship service while additionally getting a group of congregants to commit to attending (e.g. planting) an alternative worship service that is fully operational by 2020. And further exploring worship services utilizing jazz, organ, and “contemporary” bands, and so much more. We must REINVIGORATE! The Music, Worship, & Arts team. All of our worship services for 52 weeks will be creative and inspiring.

 

 

Growing an Engaged Church

Thank you for your presence on this past Sunday. We were blessed by Lay Servant Connie Palmer who finalized our sermon series Stories That Make Us Better People. On behalf of Gregory, Dan, and Connie as well as the Adult Faith Development Team, we pray that you were touched with stories that gave you reason to grow in your faith. Growing an Engaged Church means we are committed to going deeper in our faith.

The season of Advent serves as the beginning of the Christian calendar, remembers the actions leading up to the birth of Jesus, and reminds us to live as those who are prepared for the second coming of Jesus. It’s through these meanings of the season that we find relevance for us today, and if we allow it, greater expectations for our lives.

During the month of December, we are often lured into higher acts of consumerism, to believe that our relationships are validated through indulgence, and onto faux pathways that promise a better you. We don’t always realize the greater expectations until we’ve already given into the lure of society’s great expectations.Greater Expectations is about realizing God’s plan for living your life. As we enter a new Christian year and end a calendar year, I invite you to reflect on these questions that will shed light on God’s plan for living your life:

Sunday, December 2nd: What motivates you? Click here to view the video for the this Sunday’s sermon.

Sunday, December 9th: What or where is your comfort zone?

Sunday, December 16th: Can you take small steps in the midst of life changing decisions? Why or why not?

Sunday, December 23rd: How can you give gifts that keep on giving?

Sunday, December 30th: What really matters the most?

 As always, the house of the Lord is open daily if you need inspiration and rejuvenation in the journey. See you soon.

~ Rev. Williams

 

Current Sermon Series

Advent: Greater Expectations with Holy Communion each Sunday

 

Upcoming Worship Series

From Expectations to Reality

 

Christmas in Westfield

The website www.ChristmasInWestfield.com is live. Visit and share.

 

Christmas Season Experiences

  • Christmas Carols each Sunday beginning 10 minutes before worship.
  • December 2nd –   Strategic Plan Lunch & Learn (after church)
  • December 9th –    Blessing of the Prayer Shawl’s knitted hats for Blue Christmas (in worship)
  • December 15th – Community Christmas Show (4:00 pm)
  • December 16th – Christmas Pageant (in worship) along with creation of luminaries for Blue Christmas
  • December 16th – Rev. Williams will preach at the UECF Worship Service at 4:45 pm
  • December 21st – Blue Christmas Worship Service (candle lighting available at 4:00 pm, service 6:30-7:00)
  • December 30th – Blessing of the Gifts. Adult and children alike, bring a gift you received from Christmas into worship as a sign of God’s blessings upon all of God’s gifts. Our 5th Sunday children’s worship team will lead worship on this day

 

Christmas Eve Services

  • (free advance tickets suggested, more information to come***):
  • *New* 10:00 am – Contemporary with Holy Communion *New*
  • 5:00 pm – Family services with Birthday Cake for Jesus
  •  7:00 pm – Traditional with Holy Communion & Candlelight Service
  • 11:00 pm – Traditional with Candle Light Service

***Even though it’s free, why do I need advanced tickets?

True. We are trying something new. We want to ensure there is enough seats for everyone to enjoy Christmas Eve worship as a family. We would appreciate you taking advantage of the Eventbrite option, which is available through www.ChristmasInWestfield.com.  However, tickets will also be available at the door,after worship on Sundays in December, and in the office for pickup.

 

Current Happenings

  1. Hanging of the Greens.  The Hanging of the Greens at FUMC will take place on Saturday, December 1 at 9:30AM.  All are invited, especially men,  to help decorate the Sanctuary and other areas of FUMC in preparation for the Advent Season which begins the next day.  What a great way to usher in this festive time of the year!  It would be helpful if you would let Gloria Brodersen (908-322-2038) know if you can help.  We really need you!

 

  1. Advent Chain.  Each Sunday in Advent and on Christmas Eve we invite you to participate in our church-wide Advent Prayer Chain Devotional.  We will provide you with strips of paper on which to complete a sentence that expresses your gratitude for God’s presence, your commitment to God’s calling, or asks prayers of petition.  Each Sunday will have a specific sentence starter inspired by the advent words of Hope, Love, Joy, and Peace in preparation for Christmas Eve.  For questions or to help with this devotional program by constructing and displaying the chain, contact Marcee Rogers.

 

  1. FUMC Christmas Giving Tree.  The holidays are upon us and the Christmas Giving Tree is bursting with need!  The St. Joseph Social Service Center has asked for our generosity again this year.  We have accepted 50 names of people that are hoping for some warm clothing this holiday season.  The tree is set up in the Narthex (many thanks to the Men’s Prayer Group for setting up the tree!) and decorated (many thanks to the Junior Youth Group!) Each ornament lists the name, age, gender and size for the person listed.  As you are able, please select an ornament, purchase the clothing and return it unwrapped. Please return the clothing in a gift bag with tissue paper and staple the ornament to the outside of the bag by Sunday, December 9, 2018.  If you have any large Christmas bags or tissue paper the Center is asking for those as well. Please contact Barbara Heifetz at barbara.heifetz@lcc.culturalcare.com  or 908-397-9658 with any questions. If you prefer to make a cash donation you can contact Barbara and she will purchase the clothing. Thank you for your generosity.

 

  1. Looking for Drivers for the Evening of Friday, December 21.  There will be a Blue Christmas worship service – a service of Remembrance and Hope, on Friday, December 21 at 6:30 PM.  We want everyone who is interested to be able to attend.  Can you drive a fellow parishioner to the service?  If you can, please contact Margo Bradley at 706-587-2194 (I also have text) or at mbradley246@comcast.net.  Your help will be greatly appreciated!  Thank You!

 

  1. Just For Your Information: Rev. Williams is a Neighborhood Co-Captain in region 4 of Ward 1.  

 

  1. FUMC’s newest Lay Servant

Elaine Pratt recently completed her Lay Servant courses. With my blessing, she is now FUMC’s newest Lay Servant. What is a Lay Servant? Click here For more information. After reading, if you too are interested in helping lead FUMC as a Lay Servant, please e-mail me.

 

  1. Adult Faith Development 

Are you ready for Advent?  Are you in anticipation of the birth and rebirth of Jesus Christ in our lives?  Let’s gather Sunday morning at 9 am to discuss the following Advent themes:

  • Sunday, December 2 (Advent Week 1) – Motivated for Change                      
  • Sunday, December 9 (Advent Week 2) – Get Outside Your Comfort Zone       
  • Sunday December 16 (Advent Week 3) – Always Be in Awe
  • Sunday December 23 (Advent Week 4) – Impact Others                                  

Sponsored by the Adult Faith Development Team – Traci Basaman, Lynn Petrino, Bob Anderson, and Dean Pratt

 

  1. Youth News.    This Sunday at Youth Group is our MarioKart Tournament! Join us in the Loft from 5:30-7:30 PM, and please bring $3 for dinner.

We’ll be having a mission trip interest meeting on Sunday, December 9th at 5:00 PM before Youth Group. Please join us if you’re interested in serving with us at The Philadelphia Project this summer!

 

  1. Rahway Prison Donation Needs.  We will be collecting paperback religious/spirituality books (paperback only!!), Christmas cards for the men to send and any blank cards or birthday cards with envelopes. They do NOT need any calendars this year. 

    There will be a bin next to the elevator. No Christmas cards past 12/16 please. Contact Connie Palmer with questions.

 

  1. UMCOR Flood Buckets.New Dover UMC in Edison is now the approved UMCOR Central New Jersey Hub for Hurricane Flood Bucket collection. Completed buckets or supplies can be dropped off at the church mornings, Monday through Friday. Please call the church office at 732-381-9478, or Rev. Chuck Coblentz at 609-937-4565, to ensure someone is available to receive the buckets/supplies, or to schedule a drop-off during off-hours. Click here

 

  1. Men’s Prayer Group. Our Men’s Prayer Group meets on Tuesday evenings from 7:30 pm to 9 pm in room 218 at the church and is also virtual via web conferencing – so you can participate wherever you are!  Come ready to share, help each other and make new friends!  This group will be led initially by Dean Pratt and Brian Mulvey.  

 

  1. Sanctuary Holiday Decorations. We look forward to the Holiday Season when we can worship and enjoy the special beauty of our decorated Sanctuary. We especially enjoy the traditional and colorful Poinsettias in the Altar area, which will be distributed to our shut-ins after December 25th.  If you would like the opportunity to honor or remember loved ones with the purchase of Altar decorations and Poinsettias, please complete the form below and bring or mail it to our Church office enclosed with your donation by December 16th.  (Checks may be made out to “FUMC, Holiday Decorations”).  Plans are to list the names of those being honored or remembered in the Christmas Bulletin.  Thank you.
 
 

Holiday Sanctuary Decorations Form

(For accuracy, please clearly print the following information)

 

In Honor of(Name):_____________________________________________

In Memory of (Deceased Name):__________________________________

Donation from:________________________________________________

Amount Enclosed $_________

 

 
 

 

Mark Your Calendar

  1. Christmas Caroling to FUMC Homebound.  Come join in spreading the Christmas Spirit by caroling to our FUMC Homebound on Saturday, December 15. We will leave the Church at 12:30PM and return in plenty of time for the 3:00PM rehearsal for those participating in the Christmas Show to be held at 4PM.  All are welcome…adults, children, singers and non-singers.   Please let Gloria Brodersen (908-322-2038)know if you are planning to participate so we can make transportation arrangements.  Don’t miss out on the fun!

 

  1. FUMC trip to a NJ Devils game! Are you looking for a gift for a hockey fan? Then come join us on February 9th @1PM as the NJ Devils play the Minnesota Wild at the Prudential Center!  Tickets are $50 each. Contact Lauren Kolaya after services or via email/phone. lyco97@aol.com or 908-962-0186 (feel free to text!). Tickets will be on sale until January 13th. 

 

  1. Santa Breakfast – December 15.  Join us for our annual Santa Claus breakfast on Saturday, December 15th from 10 a.m. until 12 noon in the Fellowship Room. There will be a light breakfast, crafts, music, stories and a visit with a very special guest fit for the season!!  The cost is $8.00 per person (Children 1 and under are free). Please sign up by December 11th outside the church office.  Don’t forget to bring your camera!  If you have any other questions, please call Kathleen Bruns-Meyers at 908-558-8988. 

 

  1. Community Christmas Show at FUMC. Save the Date!!! Saturday, December 15, 4 pm. Program planning and song selections are currently underway. If you would like to participate in the concert, please send an email to Carolyn Milhiser at culhaneboys@outlook.com. We need choir singers, bell ringers, instrumentalists, small group performers, program designers, cookie bakers, ushers, etc. There is something for everyone. Also, please reach out to family and friends who would like to participate in the choirs.

 

  1. Refreshments needed for Christmas Show!  We are looking for donations of cookies, fruit or snacks for a Fellowship Time after our Christmas show. Please contact Carolyn Milhiser milhiser@outlook.com, if you can donate.  Thank you!

 

  1. Annual Cookie Walk—December 16.  Our Annual Cookie Walk will take place on Sunday, December 16th in the Fellowship Room.  Bakers needed and shoppers welcome!  On December 16, shoppers will purchase a  container and have the opportunity to fill it with home-baked goodies.  This is a great way to get a variety of cookies for the holiday!  For more information or to donate cookies call Sue Gandy at 908-233-2389 or Mary-Lou Jackson  at 908-233-4678. Proceeds from this year’s Cookie Walk will benefit Family Promise.

 

  1. Heifer Project International Market – December 15, 16 & 23Can’t think of ideas for Christmas presents?  Everybody have everything they need?  If that’s the case, think about buying an animal from Heifer Project International.  Share the gift of hope for hungry families across the globe.  Perfect gifts for secretaries, bosses, aunts with too much money, for holiday hostesses and even your kids to show them how much you care about families around the world! Bonny Chopey and friends will be there to help you gift animals on Sundays, December 16 and 23  before and after worship, December 15th during the Christmas Concert in the waiting area outside the church office.

 

Members and Friends

  1. File Cabinet anyone?  There are 14, 2-drawer metal file cabinets left in the church by Imagine when they moved out. If anyone is interested to take one or more, please contact Kirk Huber (908-654-3987), before December 5.  After that date, the cabinets will be discarded as scrap metal.

 

  1. Support the Meixner Family.  Jeannie Dillon Meixner passed away on September 28, 2018 after a long, hard fight with cancer. A GoFundMe page has been set up in her honor, so please  consider giving in support of the Meixner family. You can click here to go to the page.

 

Members & Friends is intended to communicate particular requests or needs of FUMC members or FUMC friends (e.g.  transportation needs for medical appointments, worship, etc., wheelchair available for donation, need for a live-in caregiver, etc.).  These postings should be concise and list a contact person.  Please contact the church office 908-233-4211 or email communications@fumcwestfield.org about your listing.

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