Volume 47
Issue 9
March 2, 2017
              
Interacting with the Cross Throughout Lent
Throughout the season of Lent, all of our worship services will look forward to interacting with the cross. We will be focusing each week on the seven last words of Christ from the cross. Each Sunday, we will give you the opportunity to respond to those words by actively answering Jesus as we go. A post-it note will be included in every bulletin to give you the opportunity to write a response to Jesus and leave it on the cross which will be located in the center of each worship space. Our focus for each week will be:
  • March 5 - "Father, Forgive Them." We will respond with things for which we need forgiveness.
  • March 12 - "Today, You Will Be With Me In Heaven." We will respond with the ways that we can reveal Heaven here on Earth.
  • March 19 - "Behold Your Son, Behold Your Mother." We will respond by offering our relationships to God - those that need repairing and those we cherish.
  • March 26 - "My God, My God, Why Have You Forsaken Me?" We will respond by offering those people, places or times in our lives that have left us feeling alone and abandoned.
  • April 2 - "I Thirst." We will respond by offering those things that we long for in our lives.
  • April 9 - Palm Sunday. As we celebrate the triumphal entry of Jesus into Jerusalem, we will leave worship with a Palm cross.
Each week after worship your responses will be taken off the cross and lifted up in prayer by our clergy. We look forward to our Lenten journey together and pray that each step we make toward the cross will bring you peace and hope so that our Easter Morning will allow you to celebrate the Risen Lord with great joy!
We Built Three Wells
You did it, VHUMC! The generosity of our congregation raised enough money to build three wells and help with sand filters. Our contribution to the Neverthirst organization was over $14,000. Because of this, families for generations to come will have clean drinking water. Neverthirst said our donation will help the Cambodia Project where the wells will be dug in late summer or early fall.

Follow the link below for information on the Cambodia well project. Neverthirst will use the balance of our funds to build bio-sand filters in Cambodia. Once the project is started, we will continue to give you updates until they are complete. Thank you for continuing to be the servants that God calls us to be each and every day, both locally in Birmingham and globally across the world in Cambodia.

Children's Sunday Success
We were blessed last Sunday as our children led us in worship! It was Transfiguration Sunday and they challenged us to look for our own mountaintop experiences so that we can grow closer to Christ. The message that God sends through the children is amazing. Everyone in attendance left with a full heart. Thank you to all of the children and families that made this past Sunday possible.
A Great Boomer Spirituality Conference
By the year 2022 there will be more people employed in the home health care industry than K-12 teachers. This shocking statistic should help us understand the coming changes as 78 million people called "Baby Boomers" move into their retirement years. We also know that many of the Boomers were not raised in the church or have strayed away from (or never developed) good spiritual habits like prayer and Bible study.

We have recently realized that our Boomers and Beyond ministry is a few steps ahead of most churches, but we still have a lot to learn and share. We hosted our first-ever Boomer Spirituality Conference this past Saturday to get prepared for the coming needs of Boomers. Our attendance was about equally divided between our own Boomers and those from other congregations (as far away as Montgomery) who came to learn about Boomer ministry.

Craig Kennet Miller, who has just written a book on Boomer Spirituality, gave some great talks. We had breakout sessions on Stress, Facing Adversity, and Experiencing Grief, led by professionals from Grayson and Associates. Kipp McClurg led us in a special worship service where we experienced God in new and different ways through music and communion. We finished the day by dancing to the songs of the 1960's by "The Beatlads." If you would like more information about our Boomer and Beyond ministry, please contact Jim Frazier (jfrazier@vhumc.org / 769-0126).
Lenten Devotional Guide
Lent is a season of reflection - where many Christians carefully prepare for Easter with spiritual practices and a recommitment to our faith. To guide our spiritual journey, the devotional guide, "The Sanctuary for Lent 2017," by Donald K. McKim, is now available throughout the church. If you would like to reserve multiple copies for a group please contact Ruth Grissom (rgrissom@vhumc.org).
Sunday Evening Worship
Join us for Sunday Evening Worship! Come listen to some great preaching during the season of Lent:
  • March 5th - Walter Cash
  • March 12th - Steve Baccus
  • March 19th - Rick Owen
  • March 26th - Dedric Cowser
Come as you are and join us in the Rutland-Memorial Chapel at 5:00 pm each Sunday!
Student Ministries Fundraiser
Tickets are on sale now for our annual Student Ministry Fundraiser on March 12, at 6:30 pm (doors open at 6:00). It is the money we raise through this event that makes our mission trips possible. Individual tickets are $35 each, or you can purchase a reserved table of eight for $350. Tickets are available by visiting www.vhumc.org or click on the link below.

You can also donate using VHUMC's Text-To-Give by texting the word "Serve" to 205-900-3747.

Don't forget to bring your cash so you can participate in the always entertaining bead game for the chance to win a great gift! Students attending any of our mission trips are strongly encouraged to help serve dinner and sell beads for the bead game. Please sign up outside of the Student Ministries Office to volunteer. We hope you join us on this fun-filled evening!

Youth Silent Auction Donations
The New Life Singers will hold a silent auction in conjunction with the upcoming youth department dinner theatre on March 12. We are now collecting donated items to be sold silently at this event. If you have an item you would like to donate please drop it off in the main office of the church. Examples of items to donate would be signed sports memorabilia, electronic items, gift certificates, quality art, Sunday School baskets, etc. If you have any questions please contact Susan Sturdivant (sj4boys@aol.com).
Three Ways to Help the Hungry
The number "3" is significant in the Christian faith. We're all familiar with the Holy Trinity, which is the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. On Easter, we'll celebrate the fact that Jesus rose from the dead on the 3rd day. Just one week later, our church will work together to pack 300,000 meals in 3 days during our 3rd annual Rise Against Hunger (formerly known as Stop Hunger Now) meal packaging event, on April 23-25. There are 3 ways you can help make a difference: with your money, your time and your prayers. Our Lenten offering will support our efforts, so please give as generously as you can. Volunteer to work a shift or several, and please be in prayer for the millions of people who go to bed hungry each night. Registration for volunteer shifts will be available at www.vhumc.org starting tomorrow afternoon, so stay tuned!
Who We Are
On Sunday, March 5, at 9:45 in the chapel, we will discuss who we are as a congregation of the United Methodist Church and the greater congregation of disciples helping everyone live their Christ-centered lives of purpose. Come hear the story, so you can learn, tell, and live His story with us!
5 Minute Mission
Please join us for our first 5-Minute Mission of 2017 this Sunday, March 5, during the coffee hour (9:15 am), in the Fellowship Hall. We will be packing bags for our teams that will be traveling to Panama and Honduras later this spring. We will also be packing hygiene kits for our mission partner, Bridge Ministry, here in Birmingham. Your 5 minutes of packing will help many more in need.
Young Adult Mystery Dinner
Come join us for a mystery dinner on Saturday, March 18, at 6:30 pm to get to know other people outside of our usual groups and classes. Couples will be paired with 3-4 other couples to meet at a restaurant of your choosing (you will not know who you are going to meet until you arrive). Please register by March 12 The cost is $5.00 per couple and the registration deadline is March 12. Childcare is available on a first come/first serve basis but must be registered ahead of time. For more information, please contact Becky Reamey (reamey@uab.edu) or Suzanne Scott-Trammell (sstrammell@vhumc.org). To register visit the link below or visit www.vhumc.org.

Understanding World Religions
This four-week class will study the histories of Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam, and several lesser known religions. Our teacher will be Mr. Ben Osborne, teacher of AP World History at Vestavia Hills High School. In 2010, he was granted a James Madison Fellowship to pursue advanced studies related to American Constitutional government. Mr. Osborne is known for bringing to life the subjects that he teaches, which includes the history of the major religions of our world. Join us on Wednesday nights (March 8, 15, 22 and April 5) at 6:00 pm in room 206.
24 Hours That Changed the World
This Lenten Study will focus on the last day of the life of Jesus, following the book and DVD by Adam Hamilton. Leaders will be the pastoral staff, including Dr. Bill Brunson and Dr. Kipp McClurg. Join us on Wednesday nights, at 6:00 pm, from March 8 to April 26 (excluding Spring Break and Holy Week).
Give the Gift of Life
Be part of a lifesaving journey by donating blood! VHUMC and LifeSouth Community Blood Centers are hosting a blood drive on Sunday, March 19, from 9:00 am to 2:00 pm, in the Fellowship Hall. For more information or to schedule an appointment, contact Megan Drumm (mdrumm@vhumc.org). We look forward to seeing you there!
Vacation Bible Camp 2017
Calling all heroes! Vacation Bible Camp is scheduled for June 12-16, and this year our theme is Hero Central. We will be learning how we can become truly heroic in God. You can register your 4k (by September 1, 2016) through 5th grader online: www.vhumc.org. We are also looking for leaders in our groups, crafts, snacks and other areas. If you are interested in volunteering please contact Jamie Meeks (jmeeks@vhumc.org) or Anne Strozier(astrozier@vhumc.org). If your 6th - 12th grader would like to volunteer as a youth helper please contact Anna Watts (awwatts@bellsouth.net). We hope you can join us for the fun!

March Memory Verse
Our 1st-5th graders have a new memory verse for March. It is: "I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another." - John 13:34

Kids can recite their verse in the elementary office or sensory room before or after Sunday School for a sweet treat and a chance to win a bike!
Guys Night Out
VHUMC will hold its annual Guys Night Out to watch the NCAA Men's Basketball Tournament. We will meet on Thursday March 23, at 6:00 pm, in the Fellowship Hall. The cost is $10/person. We will have Donato's pizza and hot wings, Moe's chips and salsa, as well as popcorn, desserts, and plenty of drinks. Deadline to register is Sunday March 19. For more information contact Jim Frazier (jfrazier@vhumc.org / 769-0126).
Steeple 2 Steeple 10K, 5K, and Fun Run
Support the United Methodist Children's Home by lacing up your running shoes and participating in the Steeple 2 Steeple race on Saturday, April 22. The race takes place in Homewood and Mountain Brook and is run between Trinity UMC and Canterbury UMC. Run or walk the 10K, 5K, or Fun Run course and represent VHUMC! Grab a few friends and compete in the 5K team competition. For more information about the race or the team competition contact Megan Drumm (mdrumm@vhumc.org). We look forward to seeing you there!

Elementary Bible Study
We invite all 1st - 5th graders to join us on Wednesday nights from 6-7 in rooms 219/221 for Bible Pathfinders. Using music, crafts, hand motions, skits, games and lessons we are learning the books of the Bible. We would love for your child to join us on this adventure! Contact Jamie Meeks (jmeeks@vhumc.org) for more information.
Men's Hiking Group September Trip
The VHUMC Men's Hiking Group will be heading to Rocky Mountain National Park September 9-16 to hike through a wide variety of wildlife within various climates and environments from wooded forests to alpine lakes and mountain tundra. The plan is to stay in a local motel at night and take a hike each day. As the days go by the hikes will become more ambitious. Features along the hikes will include lakes, waterfalls, and mountain summits. For those interested in backpacking and overnight camping, part of the group may go out for a two-day wilderness trek. Estimated expenses including airfare, motel, car or van rental, food, and miscellaneous items is $1,500. To register please contact Jim Frazier (jfrazier@vhumc.org / 769-0126).
Memorials and Honorariums 
Click on the link below or visit www.vhumc.org to see the memorials and honorariums given last month. Thanks to everyone who has given to help the church in recognition of a loved one.

Gospel Jubilee Singers
This Sunday our Gospel Jubilee Singers will gather in the Chapel at 4:00 pm, before Sunday Evening Worship, to sing some of the great songs of our faith. We hope to see you there!
Ongoing Outreach

Volunteers Needed for Family Promise
One of our long-running outreach programs at VHUMC is Family Promise. This organization is the only one of its kind where in the case of homelessness, the families can stay together. This Sunday we will be hosting 3-4 families here at the church and we need your help. There are many ways to get involved whether it is to provide a meal, serve a meal, bring your family up to play with the other families, or spend the night. If you or your family or Sunday School class are interested, please contact Rob Armstrong (robarmst00@gmail.com) or Susan Sturdivant (sj4boys@aol.com).

Food Pantry
Food Pantry needs spaghetti sauce. We were able to purchase noodles from the food bank, but need sauce. We also need jelly to go with the peanut butter that we purchased. Thank you!

Oak Mountain Mission
Oak Mountain Mission needs sofas, chairs, kitchen tables/chairs, dressers, and chests. Please call Brenda at 685-5757 to arrange a home pick-up.
Wednesday Night Menu
  • Mar 8 - Salad, Orecchiette w/ Bolognese Sauce OR Chicken Alfredo, Sautéed Veggies, Cobbler 
  • Mar 15 - Salad, Chicken Cacciatore OR Baked Flounder, Wild Rice, Baby Lima's, Banana Pudding
  • Mar 22 - Salad, Lemon-Pepper Chicken OR Roast Pork Loin, Honey Glazed Carrots, Roasted Potatoes, Pie
  • Mar 29 - Slaw, BBQ Pork OR Chicken, Baked Beans, Potato Salad, Texas Toast, Cake 
Worship & Music Focus
8:30 am         Traditional Service
Luke 23:13-25,33-34
"Father Forgive Them"
Bill Brunson

9:45 am         Service of Word and Table
Luke 23:13-25,33-34
"Father Forgive Them"
Butch Williams

11:00 am         Traditional Service
Luke 23:13-25,33-34
"Father Forgive Them"
Bill Brunson

11:00 am         Contemporary Service
Luke 23:13-25,33-34
"Father Forgive Them"
Kipp McClurg

5:00 pm         Sunday Evening Worship
Psalm 51:1-13
"When Conviction Becomes a Cry"
Walter Cash
Our Time and Resources
 

Donations this past week

January YTD Summary
Donations
Other Income
Auxilary Ministries Net*
Total Income
Actual
$43,380


$4,089,422
$200,780
$14,875
$4,305,077
Targeted
-$ 20,594


-$156,743
-$12,089
-$58,214
-$227,046

(+) Better or (-) worse for the church than our target
* Includes COA, Summer Days, VDS, and Vestavia Dance
Care and Support
Congratulations, hospitalizations, and sympathies

Prayer Requests
 
Careline: 205-822-9336 
Weekend or After-Hour Health Emergencies: 205-914-3121

Please be in prayer for the following persons: 
Pat Bendall
Jim Bendall
Ginger Peete Bramlett
Margean Brasher
Lynn Brasher
Melinda DeBenedetto
Jami DeMarco
Chris Dibble
David Dixon
Adam Draney
Julie Duffe
Tim Eddins
Catherine Elmore
Kendra Haddock
Fay Harbin
Fred Hatfield
Joy Hunger
Jeff Hunger
Pug Kaufman
Tricia McKinnon
Steve Mobley
Mary Morgan
Will Nailen
Paul Noto
Norma Owen
Mary Owens
Norman Ponder
Courtenay Renneker
Jim Sanders

Requested prayers for service members in combat areas:
  • 1st Lt. Spencer Carroll, US Army, (Kuwait)

In an effort to keep the prayer request list current, names will be listed for two weeks unless we are otherwise notified. VHUMC will not publish the names and/or concerns of persons known to be minors (18 years of age or younger) without the permission of said minor's legal guardian. Thank you.