Happy Thanksgiving!
First Church News & Updates - November 17, 2017

Happy Thanksgiving

The church office will be closed Wednesday, November 22 - Friday, November 24.

Enjoy this First Church news.
This week in worship...
Sermon Series

Thanksgiving Sunday

Sermon Title: "You Just Can't Out-give God"
Scripture:  I Kings 17:7-16

Dr. Will Cotton will be preaching at the 8:30 and 11 am worship services.  Dr. Beverly Jones will be preaching at the 9:40 am worship service.  The Source, our weekly devotional guide, is available on the church website.

Please join us in worship this Sunday at 8:30 am (Sanctuary), 9:40 am (FLC), or 11 am (Sanctuary).

This is the first of our two Commitment Sundays. Our Ministry Moment will focus on Round Rock Helpers

Please join us in worship this Sunday at  8:30 am (Sanctuary), 9:40 am (FLC), or 11 am (Sanctuary).
Words from Will...
Making Our Commitments at Thanksgiving
We have chosen the Sunday before Thanksgiving as our first Commitment Sunday for our Giving Matters campaign. That's because at First Church we give in response to God who has already given us more than we could ever imagine. We don't make commitments out of obligation, we do so in thanksgiving and joy. This week, you should receive your giving packets with a narrative budget, gathered from 2017 projected estimates, and a commitment brochure. There will also be brochures included in the worship guides this Sunday.  You may also make your commitment online at  myFirstChurch

Pledge Campaign
Why make a commitment? First, it is a way of placing your God-given resources in God's care. When we offer a designated portion of our income (the biblical standard is the tithe or 10%), we prayerfully invite God to be part of all that we have and do in this coming year. The commitment Tina and I will make for this year will be second in line behind our housing costs, the largest one we have made in our ministry to date. Why is it that our money goes further when God gets the first 10% than when we just give the work of God what's left over? It may be partly due to being smarter about spending, but I do believe that God's participation does make a big difference. For as we will share this Sunday, "You just can't outgive God."   Will this be a tithing year for you or will you step up to a new level in that direction?

A second reason to make a commitment is to assist the Finance Committee and Church Council in making wise decisions. We make our budget based on the commitments that are made plus the anticipated income from those who don't pledge and monies from other sources. This year, those who made commitments are paying at more than 100% and monies received from other sources (building rentals, eg) are fairly predictable. What is more difficult to estimate is non-pledged giving, because leaders end up projecting giving patterns of the past into the future. In short, your commitment of giving for 2018, helps leaders plan and budget wisely. We live by faith and we want to be smart at the same time.

In case you will be out of town, we will have another Commitment Sunday on November 26 and finish out the Giving Matters campaign on December 3. Take time to prayerfully consider your commitment, then fill out the commitment brochure and come joyfully to offer yourself afresh to God.  It will be a holy moment for all of us.  

Sincerely in Christ,
Will Cotton Signature

Dr. Will Cotton
Senior Pastor
Ministry Focus...
Children's Ministry
Nativity Experience
Nativity Experience for Families
Children's Ministry invites all families & friends to join us at 3:00 pm on December 17 , for a brand new Christmas Event! Families will hear from Mary, Joseph and the Angel. Families will also have the opportunity to make their own children's nativity to take home, one per family. Paint clothes are recommended. 

Register online to reserve a place for your family!   

Student Ministry
December 1: Deadline for 
Confirmation Registration 
Each spring students who go through Confirmation classes learn about the United Methodist Church, key Biblical principles, and what it means to be a Christian. Through the Confirmation journey, students learn what it means to be responsible for their own faith and ultimately claim their faith as their own.

Confirmation is open to students in the 7th and 8th grades. Click to download the Confirmation Information Packet and the Highland Lakes Release Form. You can also contact Jodi Marfell at  jodi@fumc-rr.org.
Other Student Ministry Info...
  • No FUSION on Sunday, November 19
  • Camp Eagle 2018July 22 - 27 (High School) and August 3 - 8 (Middle School)
Adult Ministry
Winter Camp 2018
Winter Family Camp: January 12 - 15, 2018
Please make plans to join your First Church family for another great, restful weekend at the HEB Foundation camp in the gorgeous Texas Hill Country. Cabins are centrally heated with hot showers, and there is a lodge with a huge fireplace where we gather to eat, sing, and worship together. All meals are included. Cost is only $30 per adult or child 13 or older, $15 per child 4 - 12, and free for children age 3 and under. 

Registration will begin in December. Contact Paul Pulley, pwptcp-fumc@yahoo.com or 512.828.3871 with questions or to be included in email list for further information.
Other Adult Ministry Info...
Caring Ministry
Caring Angels Stockings
Caring Angels Stockings
Christmas is a time of spreading the joy of the season with others. Our Caring Angel Ministry invites you to join in the fun. The Stocking Tree will be up in the foyers of the Sanctuary and Family Life Center on Sunday, November 26. Take one or more stockings from the tree with the list of goodies to provide that are appropriate for area senior residents and centers. Bring the filled stockings back to the Sanctuary or FLC foyers, or the church office by Sunday, December 3. We will deliver 250 stockings to The Court and The Legacy this year. Filling the stockings is a fun and meaningful activity for the whole family. Questions? Contact Bea Adams, beaadams1@gmail.com.
Church Mouse Gift Cards

The Church Mouse program requests your help.
It's time for finals for our college students and we would like to send them each a note and a gift card to wish them good luck!  Buy a $10 gift card to Starbucks, Chick-fil-A, Dominos, or any place a college student would like. We will collect them the entire month of November, with the final donation date being Sunday, November 26 . Please bring them to the youth office or mail them to the church (designate the Church Mouse Program) to 1004 N. Mays Street, Round Rock, TX 78664. Thank you for supporting our college students!
Mission Focus...
Thanksgiving Bags

367 families were blessed with Thanksgiving meals
In 2013 the Student Ministries program began an outreach to the community by providing Thanksgiving meals to low income families in local elementary schools. The first year we provided meals to 60 families at 5 schools. Over the years this ministry has been adopted by many members of our congregation, allowing us to feed more families each year. This year we provided 367 families with Thanksgiving meals!
As this ministry has grown we have expanded to include more schools and organizations. This year we served the following elementary schools: Berkman, Bluebonnet, Caldwell Heights, Robertson, Union Hill, Voigt and Wells Branch. We also included Success High School, Texas Baptist Children's Home, Texas National Guard and Boys to Men of God/Daughters of the King. Additionally, we provided 100 meals to Hurricane Harvey victims in Houston. Each family received a full Thanksgiving meal including a fully cooked turkey, pies and rolls.
This outreach to our community was only possible through the generous donations of food and volunteers who helped organize, distribute and deliver meals. Thank you to everyone who supported this ministry event! The Student Ministries program looks forward to partnering with the congregation next year as we bless even more families in our community!
Angel Tree

Want to be a Christmas Angel? 
There are still a few angels available for adoption. 
If you missed your chance to adopt an angel last Sunday, you still have an opportunity. There are 10 left in the 11+ year old category ($100 spending recommendation). This would also be a great opportunity for Adult  Sunday  School Classes or Disciple groups. 
Holiday Extravaganza
Other Mission & Outreach Info...
  • UMCOR Sager Brown Mission Trip: March 18 - 23, 2018.
  • Disaster Relief:  Donations are still being accepted for hurricane relief.
  • The Villages: read more about our strategic vision for church-wide Outreach and Mission-local, regional, and global.
  • Round Rock Helpers: Providing handyman services and assistance to seniors.
  • First Church Backpack Project: Donate or volunteer!
  • Ministry of Motherhood is staffing the Twin Oaks Cafe in November.
  • Plastic Bag Recycling: Donate your plastic bags for use at the Round Rock Area Serving Center. Leave them in the white barrel in Payne Cottage. They are picked up weekly.
  • Drive-A-Senior Needs More Drivers: Visit their websiteor call 512-310-1060 to learn more about this community service to our elderly neighbors.
  • Round Rock Area Serving Center: Volunteers are needed for a variety of jobs. New volunteer orientation is on the 1st and 3rd Tuesdays at 4 pm at 1099 E. Main St., 2nd floor conference room. Call 512.244.2431.
Friends of First Church
Footprints Children's Grief Ministry
Footprints Children's Grief Ministry 
needs your help! 
We offer 10 week workshops to children in the community who have suffered loss of a loved one through divorce or death. The workshops are offered to the children free of charge to their families, so we need your help. You can sponsor a child (or children) for $50 each ($5/week for 10 weeks). Sign up to sponsor and get more information on the Footprints website. Footprints Children's Grief Ministry originated at First Church and is now a tax-exempt 501c3 organization. 
Save these dates for upcoming holiday events!
Advent and Christmas...just around the corner
In order to help you plan your calendar, we want to share some church-wide and community events:

We will add additional events and dates as information becomes available.                             

This week at First Church
Saturday, November 18
  • 9:00 am - Scrub-a-dub Day. Check in at FLC.
  • 7:00 pm - Bridge Club, Bldg. 5-127
Sunday, November 19 - Thanksgiving Sunday
  • 8:30, 9:40 and 11 am - Worship Services
  • 8:40 am - LifeGroup - Spiritual Growth, Bldg. 4/Payne Cottage
  • 9:40 am - Methodism 101, Bldg. 5/222
  • 11:00 am - LifeGroup - Parents & Families in Transition, Bldg. 5-124 
  • 11:00 am - LifeGroup - Young Parents, Bldg. 5-148
  • 11:00 am - LifeGroup - Putting Your Faith into Action Bldg 5-136
Monday, November 20
  • 6:00 pm - Venture Crew, Bldg. 3/East Cry Room
  • 7:00 pm - Jubilation Bells rehearsal, North Suite
Tuesday, November 21
  • 12:30 pm - Brown Bag Theologians, Bldg. 5-122
  • 5:00 pm - Revelation Ringers Bronze rehearsal, North Suite
  • 7:00 pm - Council Oak Bells rehearsal, North Suite
Wednesday, November 22 - Church office will be closed
  • 6:15 am - UMM Breakfast, fellowship, devotional - FLC/Bldg. 3
Thursday, November 23 - Church office will be closed

Friday,  November 24 - Church office will be closed
  • 8:00 pm - Narcotics Anonymous-Right Stuff, Bldg. 4
Saturday, November 25

There is always a lot going on at First Church. Visit the website, find us on Facebook or Twitter, and check the Church Calendar so you don't miss out! 

Betty Robertson
First United Methodist Church Round Rock

First Church exists to share the love  of God in Jesus Christ.
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