The newsletter for St. Mark's UMC in Murfreesboro, TN
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"The Messenger"  Online Newsletter

March 13, 2018
Dr. Craig Goff
From the Pastor

Experts in the area of church growth tell us that the first few minutes of a person's first visit to a church determines whether or not they will return.

In her book called, Fusion, Turning First Time Guests Into Fully Engaged Members of Your Church, author Nancy Searson writes:

Seven minutes is all you get to make a positive first impression.  In the first seven minutes of contact with your church, your first-time guests will decide whether they are coming back...

Feb. 18 The Uncertainty  of Faith
Feb. 25 The Uncertainty  of Forgiveness
Mar. 4 The Uncertainty  of Worry
Mar. 11 The Uncertainty  of Mortality
Mar. 18 The Uncertainty of Surrender
Mar. 25 The Uncertainty of Obedience

You are invited to engage life's uncertainties with courage and faith.
Holy Week Worship Opportunities

Palm/Passion Sunday - March 25
8:30 a.m. & 11:00 a.m. Worship Celebration

Holy (Maundy) Thursday - March 29
6:30 p.m. Living Last Supper in the Rec. Center

Good Friday - March 30 - Noon Walking the Way of the Cross
 
Then, come and celebrate the Good News
of the Resurrection on Easter Sunday!
Easter - April 1
7:00 a.m. Youth-led Sunrise Service in the Narthex
8:30 a.m. & 11:00 a.m. Easter Worship Celebration in the Sanctuary
Be sure to invite your friends and family to join you
at these special worship experiences!


SAGES News

The SAGES will be providing hospitality at the Fisher House on Thursday, March 15, from 3:30-5:00 P.M.
 
The Dementia-Alzheimer's' Support Group will met on March 22 at 1:30 P.M. in Room 1203.
 
You're invited to go with the Sages to Granny Fishes on Friday, March 23.  The bus will leave the church at 3:30 P.M.  The meal is Dutch Treat.  There will be a $5.00 charge to ride the bus. Please sign up at the SAGES table in the narthex or in the church office.  Look for the book!


Family, Food, Fellowship, Faith, and Fun for the whole Family!
Wednesday Night Together offers a full menu of delicious food, warm table fellowship, and wonderful classes and groups for all ages!
5:15 - 6:00 p.m. Church Family Dinner

Reservations due by 12:00 p.m. Monday
$6.00/Adult, $2.00/Children and MTSU Students, $20.00/Family Max

6:00 - 7:15 p.m. WEDNESDAY NIGHT PRAISE for Children
6:15 - 7:15 p.m. NEW CLASSES AND GROUPS FOR YOUTH AND ADULTS
CLICK HERE to view the current 2018 WNT BROCHURE
Youth News 


We are going hiking on Good Friday, March 30th! Most everyone should be on Spring Break that week, so we will spend a day doing some hiking, seeing nature, and getting to know each other better! We will plan to meet at the church in the morning and go to a nearby state park for the day, returning mid-afternoon. The hike will be for all skill levels (no climbing any mountains!), so everyone is encouraged to attend! Exact details will be finalized over the next couple weeks.
 
As usual, the youth will be leading the Easter Sunday Sunrise Service. This is always an excellent opportunity to help lead a service for the church, with opportunities to speak, sing, or assist with the program. If interested, talk to one of the adult leaders.
 
We want to encourage everyone to give the Sunday night youth programming a try if you haven't been in a while. We have freshened things up quite a bit, with lots of games, devotionals by youth members, and fun volunteering activities. Talk to some of the youth who have been going to hear for yourself the fun they have had while also growing in their faith and helping their community. We have made an effort to make this YOUR youth group, so I really hope to see all of you on Sunday nights!
 
Finally, just a reminder that there are still spots available for the senior high mission trip. The cost is $400 person, with scholarships available. Please let an adult leader know if you are interested.
A Message from Matthew Rogers

On behalf of the finance committee, we would like to thank everyone in the congregation for their gifts in 2017. We met our annual budget goals, and it was due to your faithful giving. 

A big part of what I want to do as leader of the finance team is to really look at how we can grow as a church and continue to grow the many ministries that we support.

How do we grow these ministries? It's not just through monetary donations. It is through you, the church. It is achieved through all of you dedicating your gifts, your prayers, your presence, your service, and your witness.  I know this as much as anyone.

How did I become a member at St. Mark's? My wife and I were searching for a church and we decided to give St. Mark's a try.  After the service, we wanted to try some different Sunday School classes, and we happened to visit the GIFT class. In the GIFT class, I met Alan Baldwin.  He immediately asked me if I played softball and if I wanted to join the St. Mark's softball team. I hadn't played softball in over 10 years, but I decided to give it a shot.  And because of his invitation, here I am, four years later, humbled in the fact that the Lord guided me to this role within the church.

Why do I bring that up? It's because giving is not just opening up your wallet.  It is that constant dedication to getting others involved. Inviting new members to the church. Getting existing members more involved in the ministries of the church. That's what giving is! And that is my goal as the finance chair.
24 Hours That Changed the World


During Lent, you and your family are invited to deepen your Christian faith and discipleship through experiencing one of the best studies available about the events of Jesus' final days, 24 Hours That Changed the World, based on the Gospel of Mark.    Adult, Youth and Elementary Christian education classes will participate in this seven-week study series Sundays, February 18th - E aster Sunday, April 1st, 9:45 - 10:45 a.m.

CLICK HERE for the full schedule and lesson list.
"God's Easter Surprise"

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Bunny Brunch and Easter Egg Hunt
For Children and their Families
Saturday, March 31st, 9:30 - 11:00 a.m.

St. Mark's Grades 3 - 6 Attend "Be Retreat"

Nine St. Mark's elementary children in Grades 3 - 6, two youth and three adults attended the "BE" Spiritual Life Retreat held by the Tennessee Conference Saturday and Sunday, March 10-11, 2018 at Beersheba Springs Assembly. 
 
The BE Retreat was led by middle and high school youth of the NEXT GEN Conference Council on Youth Ministry, including Helen Grace Daniel and Georgia Touchton from St. Mark's.  More than seventy children from across the Tennessee Conference participated, double the attendance from 2017!
Join the Movement

Thank you for your contributions to T he LOVE Movement  Offering collected at the Tennessee Conference Next Gen event, "Warmth in Winter," February 9-11 at Opryland Hotel, in memory of Adam Love.   St. Mark's offering totaled $4000.

St. Mark's has received several notes of thank for our contributions to The LOVE Movement.  CLICK HERE to read some of them.
Cedar Crest Camp Day 

Cedar Crest Camp Day Is Sunday, March 18th.  Cedar Crest Camp is a beautiful place for children and youth to experience God and meet new friends while having an exciting camping experience in a caring environment! Read about the camp and our summer schedule HERE.
St. Mark's VBS is going to be AWESOME!   

Save the Date!
June 24 - 28, 2018

When you pass through the waters, 
I will be with you. - Isaiah 43:2
In Other News...

Golf Tournament Sign Up sheet is posted in the Banquet Room hallway.

View Our Current Prayer List

Mission Team news and stats HERE

See Our Full Event Calendar

Missed a Sermon? Click  HERE to go to our sermons media page
St. Mark's UMC | (615) 893-3455 | stmarks@stmarkstn.org