E-News, December 22nd, 2017
Don’t you just hate it when you are on the way home from a party and remember (or are reminded) what you’d meant to say earlier? As we were driving home from the music party Wednesday night, I realized I had not said “thank you” again to the choirs. So, while not in person, here it is publicly: “T hank you for the many ways you enrich our lives and worship, and draw our hearts to God.
The music ministry is a signature way that MUMC shapes more deeply-rooted Jesus-followers. Members who sing, play, or lead in myriad ways take seriously their opportunities to point to God through what they do. There is a huge difference between “leading worship” and “performing”, and our music ministry exemplifies they understand that difference well. Here are several ways that has been evident this month.
Last Sunday, the chancel choir finally presented the Messiah, and it genuinely created a holy space rather than a spotlight on themselves. The untold hours they had rehearsed, the extra time practicing with the instrumentalists, the work involved in preparing the space – all worked together to blend the timeless words of Scripture with the inspired music of Handel. My heart literally has been singing all week, as phrases from the Messiah have been dancing through my head.
The Monday Memorial (M&M) Singers bring the rhythms and tunes of the music of faith into the halls and public spaces of many of the care facilities on the island. The singers enjoy the warmth it shares with those who listen, the friendships they nurture as a group, and of course, the singing itself. Their Monday-morning ministry extends the reach of music beyond worship and the physical facilities as they use the music as a form of outreach and care.
The children took their music outside the building too, as they went to sing carols to some of our home-bound members. That simple act bridges the generations, as those who are still learning the story use the music to remind those who rarely see the children sing that the faith really is “from generation to generation.”
Earlier in the month, the handbells rang from the balcony, sending the tones echoing throughout the sanctuary. They had no way of knowing that some first-time visitors that morning are active ringers in their home church. As that couple prepares to leave one community to move here, the music welcomed them with a reminder that home is not always where we used to be, but also is where we are going.
There are more music groups than these.  The band at 9:30AM lifts their voices and the worshipers’ spirits weekly in Maxwell Hall. The ensemble sings often at 8:00AM worship and, this season, has also gone to the Averett's to practice there. Our church musicians sing in musical theater in the community, using their talent and passion to enrich our larger life together.
To all of you, again, I am grateful for what you do. It matters, and on behalf of MUMC, thank-you!

-Pastor Beth
This Sunday at Memorial:
December 24th
The Fourth Sunday in Advent
Christmas Eve
this week at memorial....

SUNDAY: Dec. 24 th – Christmas Eve Worship:
Morning Worship
9:00AM – Traditional Sunday Worship in the Sanctuary
10:30AM – Children at the Manger Worship in the Sanctuary
   Evening Candlelight Worship
5:30PM – Contemporary with Praise Band in Maxwell Hall
7:30PM – Traditional with Choir in the Sanctuary
11:00PM – Peaceful, Holy Communion Service with
Classic Guitar.

SUNDAY: SWEL (Single Women Enjoying Lunch)  The ladies will not meet on December 24th or December 31st. The group will meet at the Fernandina Beach Gold Club beginning January 7th. Please RSVP weekly to Marilyn Perkins.

Happy Birthday, Jesus!

MONDAY: The Monday Memorial Singers (M/M Singers) The M/M Singers are on hiatus on Christmas Day and New Year's Day. The group will meet again on Jan. 8th at 10:00AM at the Council on Aging. All are invited to join this group who visit a different assisted living facility each week to sing favorite hymns to the residents. Click HERE for the schedule!

TUESDAY: Dec. 26th - Lamb Early Education Center Closed

Planning Ahead: The Church Office in the Partin Center will be closed on Christmas and then the rest of the week after. The office will re-open on Tuesday, January 2 nd . Please plan accordingly if you have business in the church office.

WEDNESDAY: Sandwich Ministry, Dec. 27th and Jan. 3rd While Wednesday night dinners are on hiatus, come and help this ministry make portable meals for our guests Wednesday Dec. 27th and Jan. 3rd at 4:00PM in Maxwell Hall. To give a donation for supplies, please designate "Sandwich Ministry" on your offering check. Wednesday dinners begin again on Jan., 10th!

THURSDAY: Dec. 28th - Last day to turn in year-end giving for 2017

NEXT SUNDAY: Special Worship Time on December 31 st  
On the morning of New Years Eve, Sunday, December 31 st , there will be two worship services, one at 9:00AM and one at 10:30AM. Both services will be in the Sanctuary. Our own Rev. Larry Beman and Barbara Bruce will lead the services filled with songs and focusing on our Wesley Covenant Prayer to help us prepare for the new year ahead. There will not be Sunday School for kids on the 31 st . Adult classes will meet per the decision of the class. Check with your class leader or Pastor Carrie.
snapshots of grace...
Last Sunday, the Chancel Choir at Memorial led our worship with music as they presented Handel's Messiah. It was a beautiful way to celebrate Advent and the Birth of Jesus. Thank you to all the wonderful musicians, singers and soloists who made it happen! Below, are a few photos from the musical worship!

Some of this week's headlines from around the state, country, and world in the United Methodist Church
A UMC.org Feature by Joe Iovino
December 12, 2017
For many of us Christmas morning means lounging in our pajamas, eating delicious food and slowly opening gifts. For those who started the Methodist church in America, their Christmas Eve in 1784 was the first of ten days of serious church business. In the end, their gift to us was the formation of a new denomination that would change history.
The decision to meet
When Thomas Coke bumped into Francis Asbury after a worship service at Barratt’s Chapel in Frederica, Delaware, he shared important news. John Wesley had sent him to ordain Asbury and appoint him superintendent of a new, Methodist church in the United States.
This had been a long time in coming. Church of England priests serving in America returned to England during the American Revolutionary War, leaving no one to administer the sacraments to the Methodists. Lay preachers kept the societies going with meetings and love feasts, but they needed ordained clergy.
By Heather Hahn
Dec. 15, 2017 | UMNS

United Methodists this past year marked the passing of a scholar of world religions, a champion of deacons and a bishop who braved an attempt on his life.

Here are 27 remembrances, listed in order of date of death.

The Rev. Huston Smith
The Rev. Huston Smith , a renowned scholar of world religions and the son of Methodist missionaries, died at age 97 on Dec. 30, 2016, in Berkeley, California. His 1958 book “The Religions of Man,” later shortened and titled “The World’s Religions,” became a standard textbook in college religion courses ....continue reading.
FLORIDA: God's message unleashed for dog lovers at Paws of Praise

December 20, 2017
By Kevin Brady | FLUMC

He's helped bring the gospel to diners, hair salons, tattoo parlors and drug dealers, so it's no surprise to find Rev. Michael Beck, senior pastor at Wildwood United Methodist Church, at a dog park early Saturday morning talking about the Bible. Welcoming familiar faces with a handshake and a shake of a paw or two, Beck invites newcomers to join in, then quietly takes a step back, encouraging others to lead and participate.
"People can't always get to church on Sunday morning, so getting out into the community and allowing people to experience the Church outside the church is an amazing experience," said Paws of Praise regular Denise O'Rourke. Amid barks, yelps and mad dashes by a small pack of friendly dogs, the unflappable Larry Gaboury—referred to by Beck as the pastor of Paws of Praise—leads the free-flowing gathering, reading short Bible passages and encouraging others to share their thoughts.
Up to 15 other dog lovers join Gaboury on the second and fourth Saturdays of every month, 9.30 a.m., at BarkPark of Wildwood in The Villages, about 30 miles south of Ocala ......continue reading.
For more news from around the United Methodist Church, visit:
United Methodist News Service or follow them on
Find news from the Florida Conference at flumc.org 
or like them on Facebook at facebook.com/FloridaUMC .
snapshots of grace...
Views from our kids, youth, and church family participating in the Lighted Christmas Parade.

Important Acolyte Training for all Current and New Acolytes  
All children currently serving or children 3 rd grade and above interested in serving as acolytes at our worship services are asked to come to an important training session January 14 th at 12:15PM in the Multipurpose Room. This is for ALL acolytes, even those who have been trained before. One parent must also attend the training to assist with the learning process. Lunch will be served. Please contact Pastor Carrie with questions.

Florida Advocacy Days, January 21-23, 2018
The United Methodist Church has a long history of advocating for justice. Join your voice with other brothers and sisters in Christ as we gather in Tallahassee during Annual Children's Week.  
Together we will learn about critical justice issues affecting children in all of our communities throughout Florida.
The United Methodist Church and the African Methodist Episcopal Church will come together for a day of prayer and learning as we prepare to meet with our legislators and advocate on behalf of "those who cannot speak for themselves. Click HERE for more information.

Help Take Down and Store the Christmas Decorations at Memorial
The “Browning of the Church” is Saturday, January 6 th , at 10:00AM. If you can come and help, contact Laura Giordano by emailing lagiorda@gmail.com or call 494-683-1660.
Come Have Coffee with the Pastor’s
Join Pastors Beth, Drew, and Carrie at “Coffee with the Pastors,” Thurs., Jan. 11 th , 2018 at 6:30PM in the Multipurpose Room. Hear more about membership expectations and meet other newcomers as you enjoy an informal time of fellowship. Find out ways to get better connected at Memorial and ask any questions you may have. Light refreshments will be served, and childcare is available. RSVP to Karen Schmitt, New Member Coordinator.
Been Putting off Joining the Church? There’s a Special Day Just for You! Members of Memorial commit to support the mission of the church through their prayers, presence, gifts, service, and witness. If you are already doing these things but have not “made it official,” Memorial is offering a special day, Jan. 14 th , 2018, to join the church. Membership is not for everyone, but if you are interested, please contact Karen Schmitt or speak with one of the pastors.  

Confirmation for Youth and Adults Beginning Soon
Confirmation is a time to explore your faith and confirm, or re-confirm, yourself as a follower of Jesus. The classes go through the core beliefs of the Christian faith and focus on the particular history of Methodists and our distinct theology. Memorial offers two parallel confirmation classes. One of youth (6 th grade and older) and one for adults. Both classes will begin on January 21 at 3:30PM. There will be an informational meeting on January 7 at 12:15PM in the Multipurpose Room. If you have any questions contact Pastor Drew or Pastor Carrie. To register go to: https://goo.gl/forms/zsQEvTmwOyDi8cca2
Help the Sandwich Ministry 
While Wednesday night dinners are on hiatus, our mission to feed our area hungry is still active! Come and help this ministry make portable meals for our guests each Wednesday through the first week of January at 4:00PM in Maxwell Hall. To give a donation for supplies, please designate "Sandwich Ministry" on your offering check.
MUMC Softball Team Gearing up for 2018
Memorial’s sixth season participating in the Family Driven Softball League begins in February. Each 60-minute game is played on Saturday, with players often staying after for fellowship with other Christians in our community. This is a great atmosphere for the entire family, including a children's playground and concession stand. The fields are located at Springhill Baptist Church, on Old Nassauville Rd. For more information on participation, email David Keay at davidkeay65@gmail.com before the end of the year.

The Annual "Bridging the Gap: Community & Culture" Service
On Monday, January 8th, 2018, Historic Macedonia AME Church will be hosting its annual Church, Community and Law-Enforcement “Bridging the Gap Community & Culture” program. This service is a call to the Pastor, church community, law enforcement, city and county leaders to participate in a night of renewal and support for a new year of unity in the community securing a better today and a brighter tomorrow. The service will begin at 6:30PM in the sanctuary of Macedonia AME Church, 202 South 9 th Street, Fernandina Beach. Street parking is available and the entrance is wheelchair accessible.

mark your calendars...

Dec. 24 th – Christmas Eve Worship:
Morning Worship
9:00AM – Traditional Sunday Worship
10:30AM – Children at the Manger, Family Worship
   Evening Candlelight Worship
5:30PM – Contemporary with Praise Band
7:30PM – Traditional with Choir
11:00PM – Holy Communion with Harp

Dec. 25 th - Jan. 1 st - Church Office Closed

Dec. 26 th - Lamb Early Education Center Closed

Dec. 28 th - Last Day to Turn in 2017 Givings

Dec. 31 st - NYE Special Sunday Worship Times, 9:00AM and
10:30AM, both in the Sanctuary
Jan. 1 st - Church Office and Lamb Closed
Jan 2 nd - 5th - Youth Ski Trip to Maggie Valley

Jan. 6 th Browning of the Church, 10:00AM

Jan. 7 th – Info. Meeting for Youth & Adult Confirmation,
12:15PM, Multipurpose Room

Jan. 7 th Taizé Worship, 6:00PM at Trinity

Jan. 10 th - Wednesday Night Dinners and   
    Classes Begin, Beef Tips are on the Menu

Jan. 11 th Coffee with the Pastors, 6:30PM,
       Multipurpose Room

Jan. 13th - Men's Breakfast, 8:00AM Maxwell Hall

 Jan. 14 th – Bloodmobile at Memorial

 Jan. 21 st Pastor Beth’s Last Sunday Preaching at Memorial