First United Methodist Church in Mattoon

Weekly Update
December 1, 2017

Help us keep our congregation (and your faith) strong by joining us this Sunday morning for may   click here  for a peek at the bulletin.  This Sunday is communion Sunday, the first Sunday of Advent, and a United Methodist wide emphasis on refugees in the world.  The children will be singing/performing at both worship services this week. 
Contents in this                  Issue:

News: 2nd Wind

Refugee Crisis

News: Hanging of the Greens

News:One Stop Christmas

News: Stewardship Events

News:  Stewardship Card

News: Caroling

News: One Service

News: UMW News

Keeping Up With Pastors

Volunteer & Community Opportunities


Joys and Concerns

Praying Together This Week


People News


Click Here for the church website

Join Our Mailing List
2nd Wind Trip

There are still tickets to Richard's Farm for TODAY Friday, December 1!!  Call the office at 217-235-5676 if you would like to go.  

Departure time is 4:45 p.m. from the church's 16th Street entrance.  

Refugee Crisis

The United Nations estimates that more than 65 million people in the world have been forced from their countries of birth, due to poverty, war, and climate change. 

United Methodists around the world are taking a special offering on December 3 to provide direct aid to refugees and those who are trying to establish new lives in new places.

Click here to read more about this offering and this issue.

Hanging of the Greens

The annual Hanging of the Greens will be held this Sunday, December 3.  This will take place between the worship services, therefore beginning shortly after 9:15 a.m.  All the decorations will be in tubs located at various places around the narthex and sanctuary, so all we need is many willing hands to get the job done.  There will be some task for workers of all ages, so please consider joining in the fun and fellowship of the morning.  

One Stop Community Christmas

One Stop Community Christmas is only 1 week away!   There are 996 families with 2377 children signed up to receive services.  This is a record number of children.  We are still accepting donations. Thank you to those that have already given.   Please put your donation of Kleenex in the box in the hallway.  If you would like to donate cash, please leave it in the office with it directed to One Stop.  Help is still needed at our booth on Saturday, December 9
.  You can work an hour or all day!  Please sign up if you have the time.  Thank you.

Stewardship Events  

  1. Consecration Sunday Celebration Lunch:  will be in the fellowship hall at noon, Sunday December 10. A benefactor has paid for this catered meal and there will be no cost to participants.  The only program afterward will be an announcement of the results of our giving estimates (brought forward during the worship services that morning.)  We want everyone from our church family to attend, whether filling out a stewardship card that morning or not.  It is a time to celebrate our church family and the strength we have when we work together.
  2. Consecration Sunday Worship Services: The two worship services on December 10 will feature guest preacher, the Rev. Mark Myers, a long time friend and colleague of Pastor Mike. During the worship service, people will be given a stewardship card (see the block below) to fill out privately and bring forward to the altar table.  This will be people's opportunity to estimate their giving to the General Fund for 2018.
  3. Leadership Dinner:  The members of the finance committee, stewardship committee, and Church Council will meet Sunday night, December 3, for stewardship training and for finalizing plans for Consecration Sunday.

Stewardship Card     

On Sunday, December 10, each person/family in the worship service will be given a "Stewardship Card."  The card will have a place for people to estimate the amount they plan to give to First United Methodist Church in 2018 for the General Fund.  There may be other offerings during the year for causes such as building renovation, humanitarian relief, or special projects.

Those who are not in attendance at the December 10 worship services will be mailed a card on December 11.  By filling out this card, two good things happen:  1) we strengthen our church and encourage each other by making mutual commitments to the work we are doing together and 2) we strengthen our faith commitment by willingly holding ourselves accountable to a goal.

The cards will not be made public, but will be handled by our director of deposits, Randall Ross.  It is okay if people decide to adjust their estimate as the year goes on, either upward or downward, due to unforeseen circumstances, either good or bad.  

Here is a sample of the card: 


First United Methodist Church Mattoon
Stewardship Card
By the grace of God, I plan to contribute $______   to the 
General Fund of First United Methodist Church
Please check one: ___  per week  ___  per month   ___per year
  ___ This is an increase over last year                                     
   ___I am tithing or moving toward tithing to the church         
Name  __________________________________________________
Phone/Email __________________/_____________________________                            
 (Back of card)

   ___ I would like a box of offering envelopes
   ___ I am interested in contributing electronically
I would like my quarterly giving statement sent  ___ by email            ___ by U.S. postal mail
The General Fund pays for all the basic outreach, nurture, and witness ministries of our congregation.  It pays for the good things we are able to do through our programs, building, staff, and United Methodist partners. There will be additional opportunities to contribute throughout the year to offerings for humanitarian relief, building projects, endowment funds, and special projects.  There will also be ways to strengthen our ministries through volunteering time and enjoying the fellowship of occasional fund raising projects.
Thank you for being a part of our church community, helping to keep the spirit of our church faithful to Christ, generous, and joyful.  

Here We Go A'Caroling

Whether you consider yourself a good singer or not, we invite you to join us for an afternoon of carol singing to those who cannot get out to enjoy the Christmas Season.  Please meet at the church at 3 p.m. on December 10.   And we will provide transportation to sing songs of the season to those shut-in.  Families, couples, individuals, older, younger or middle-aged...all are welcome!

Unified Service:  December 17, 24, 31

In December, we will have three Sundays in which there will be only one service.  Those Sundays are December 17, 24 and 31 and will begin at 10 a.m.  There will not be Sunday School on those days.

UMW News

On Sunday, December 10, bazaar items at reduced prices will be offered for sale in the Fellowship Hall.  This will be a good time to cross some names off your shopping list.  Attend the meal that is being offered that day and do some shopping.
Mary Circle will meet Monday, December 11 at Denny's at 12 noon for a time of fellowship and a meal.  Each person will order from the menu and be responsible for her own meal.  Reservations must be made to Mona at 235-6462 by December 4.  
Mary Mini Circle will meet December 18 at 2 p.m. in the dining room of Brookstone South.  Guests are welcome.  We will share Christmas stories and music and enjoy refreshments.  See you there!

Keeping Up With Jordan and Mike

Pastor Mike is slowly improving after hand surgery November 7.  He will have he cast on his arm for another 3 or 4 weeks.

Jordan is working on plans (to take to the trustees) for changes in the youth room to make it more functional for hospitality and worship events.
Click Here to contact Pastor J. Michael Smith

Click Here to contact Youth Pastor Jordan Thomas

Click Here
for Pastor Mike's website

Volunteer & Community Opportunities

In the Community:
Volunteer your time or donate to the Mattoon Public Library.   Click here  for more information about the needs of the shelter.

In the Church:
~Children's programs
~Youth Group
~Backpack program
~Mattoon Area PADS; a group from our church serves dinner the 4th Friday  every month; cook at 6:00 p.m., serve at 7:00 p.m., see Susie Beaumont for more information


Special Events

2nd Wind-Richard's Farm , December 1,  4:45 p.m.   $27
Hanging of the Greens, December 3, 9:30 a.m.
Global Migration Sunday, December 3
Leadership Dinner (2018 Church Council members), December 3
Pledge Sunday, December 10
Consecration Day Dinner, December 10 at Noon

________________________________ __

Next Meeting Dates

Communications Task Force, January 23, 2018,  7:00 p.m.
Endowment , January 18, 7:30 p.m.
Hospitality , December 14, 5:00 p.m.
Missions, December 4, 2:00 p.m.
Pastor Parish Relations , January 18, 6:30 p.m.
Trustees, December 11 , 6:00 p.m.
UMW Executive Board, December 5, 1:30 p.m.


Regular Events

Traditional Worship         8:15 a.m.
Sunday School               9:30 a.m.
Contemporary worship  10:45 a.m.
Middle School Youth      5:00-7:00 p.m. (no service Nov. 26 for both Middle and Sr. High)  
Sr. High Youth                6:00-8:00 p.m. 
Mary Circle, second Mondays, 1:30 p.m.  
Mary Mini Circle, fourth Monday of the month,  2:00 p.m.
Rebecca Circle, second Mondays, 7:00 p.m. 
Pastor's Bible Study    10:00 a.m.
UMW Executive Board   1:30 p.m., first Tuesday of the           month
Women's Bible Study of Romans  6:00 p.m.
Wednesdays .  
Cross Training Prayer  6:30 a.m. at the Dickinson's               (through December 14 until after the first of the year)
Chancel Choir  5:45 p.m.
Downtown Kids  5:30-7:00 p.m., every Wednesday night         from Sept-May
Women's Bible Study-"Forgiveness", 6:3 0 a.m.  at                    Pagliacci's     
Contemporary Worship Practice  6:00 p.m.
Men's Breakfast, second Saturday of the month,       
       Downtown Diner, 7:00 a.m.

Office Hours:
Monday-Friday    9 a.m.-12 Noon; 1:00-3:00 p.m. 

Click Here for our online calendar, covering all church events.

Joys and Concerns  
(including Sunday's blue cards

Christen Hance Shaffer got a good      report following minor surgery          for  melanoma.
Season of thankfulness for                  everything-Sharyl King
Niece Hailey go married.-Barb Seaton
Vivian and Tammy Scott moved into their new house and 
    are loving it!
Thankful for the love and generosity that provided 60                  Operation Christmas Child boxes!

Prayers for Fran Whitley from Marvin
A friend's grandma suffering from dementia and family is             having a hard time-Tammy Scott
Lois Smith-low blood pressure

Praying Together This Week

People in our church family:
Scott & Susan McDevitt
Randy & Cheryl McDowell
Doris McKinney & Richard Cilento
Kerry & Cathy Minor


World Council of Churches Prayer Calendar:
Pray this week for the people of Myanmar and Thailand.
  Click here for information about the WCC prayer calendar


November 19 attendance:
   8:15 am:     88                

   10:45 am:   41

Finance Report:
General Fund: $    7,387  received  this week                  
                        $346,687  YTD

   (our general fund budget is $401,000 for the year)

Renovation Fund:   
Cost of project:              $434,766
Starting funds:                 107,142
2016 receipts                     57,646
2017 receipts                   120,602
Still Needed:                  $148,926

The amount received for 2017 includes receipts  last week of:  $5,000

The renovation work (heating, air conditioning, and tuckpointing) was organized in three phases.  The first two phases (completed in 2016 and 2017) are PAID FOR!  Due to funds on hand and the generosity of our members, we did not have to borrow any money for the first two phases.

In addition to the money received for the general fund, contributions were made last week to the following causes:
    Backpacks:   $50
    Christmas Baskets: $40  

People News

Birthdays from 11/23 to 11/30
12/01   David Champion
12/01   Peggy Ropiequet
12/02   Katie Arthur
12/04   Christine McConnell
12/04   Kerry Minor
12/06   Isaiah Beltran
12/07   Trenton Dearing
12/07   Mike Lefever

Anniversaries from
11/23 to 11/30

No Anniversaries

In Nursing Homes and Assisted Living:
   Dorothy Shepard
   Virginia Beasley 
   Mary Sheppard
   Norma Edwards

Mattoon Healthcare:
   Dorothy Gullion
   John Zachow

Oddfellow Rebecca:
   Fran Whitley
   Doris Grass
   Gene Hoots
   Betty Eisner

Douglas Rehabilitation:
   Pauline Andrews

Mason Point:
   Ruby and Gerald Lowry

Titus Manor-Sullivan
   Marilyn Doty

Copper Creek
   Betty Hoots
   Carroll Livesay
   Maxine Chapin
   Lowell Davis

Heartland Christian Village-Neoga
   Lois Smith (Temporary)

Attending College:
   Zach Armstrong
   Austin Sherman
   Carley Leitch
   Riley Leitch
   Andie Antonik
   Luke Collings
   Luke Young
   Kaylee Beals
   Derek Pierce
   Abbie Sherman
   Sophie Collings
   Morgan Hampton
   DeVante White
   Kelly Pierce
   Angelica Beltran

Please let us know if we have missed anyone!!