A Weekly Newsletter of First United Methodist Church of Madison
This Sunday in Worship
Services at 9 & 11:15 a.m.

Worship this Sunday  celebrates the Baptism of the Lord with Rev. Dr. Mark Fowler preaching on Luke 3: 15-17, 21-22, Renewal of the Baptismal Covenant, and the New Year tradition of sharing the Covenant Prayer in the Wesleyan Tradition. The Chamber Choir will be joined by soloists, Doug Swenson and Michael Brunner, sharing a rendition of God Save the People from the musical "Godspell" at 9:00 a.m. Soloist Jacob Elfner will share music at 11:15.

Pizza with the Pastors, 12:30 p.m.

All youth, parents and youth leaders (current or potential!) are invited to Pizza With the Pastors. Come to Fellowship Hall at 12:30 for pizza (NOT a frozen variety, we promise) and conversation about programs in the New Year! Call 256-9061 or sign up here. See you Sunday!
This Sunday in Christian Formation
Classes at 10:15 a.m.

Coffee Fellowship: 8:15-11:15 a.m. in the Fellowship Hall (treats served at 10 a.m.)

For infants and toddlers - Noah's Ark Nursery (in Octagon), 8:45 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.
For young children - Read N' Play Room (LL07) from 9-10 a.m.

Children's Sunday School
Children age 3 and older
Classrooms in the Lower Level
Wee Learn Class in room LL12 at 10:30

Youth Sunday School
Lower Level Youth Rooms

General Conference and "A Way Forward" Review, in the Chapel
Pastor Fowler offers a brief review of the 3-hour Jan. 12 class on the special General Conference called to determine issues of inclusion of LGBTQA+ persons in the full life and ministry of the church. The review includes a survey of the framework that brings us to this point in denominational history, the authorities and implications at work, and a study of the various plans that will be offered at the conference.

Theology for the 21st Century in LL05
This class reads and discusses books about religion, theology, and past/current events. Join us as we discuss  the new book by Brian McLaren, 2019's Lyons Lecturer, The Great Spiritual Migration: How the World's Largest Religion is Seeking a Better Way to be Christian Drawing from his work as global activist, pastor, and public theologian, McLaren challenges readers to stop worrying, waiting, and indulging in nostalgia, and instead, to embrace the powerful new understandings that are reshaping the church. Books will be available in the classroom.
Preparing for the Special Session of the  General Conference,
February 22-26, 2019

Opportunities for learning, listening and discussion leading up to the General Conference, 2019 will be offered at First UMC on January 12 and 26 from 9-noon in the chapel. Mark Fowler and Bishop Linda Lee will be leading a class for Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary and have arranged for it to be held at our church so that it can be open to our members and others in the Wisconsin area.

The United Methodist Church will hold a special session of the General Conference to look to a "Way Forward." The issues surrounding inclusion of LGBTQA+ persons in the full life and ministry of the church have been before the General Conference going into a third decade. The 2016 General Conference tasked the Council of Bishops to offer a Way Forward and the results of that work will be before the General Conference in St. Louis in February.

As preparation, the January classes will offer a survey of the framework that brings us to this point in denominational history, the authorities and implications at work and a study of the various plans that will be offered for consideration. The Wisconsin delegation to the General Conference will join us on January 26 for a perspective on their work and strategy for the Conference.

Please sign up here so that we will have a good idea of the numbers to expect for the sessions.
-Rev. Dr. Mark Fowler

Financial News

2019 weekly and monthly giving envelopes will be available to pick up in the Welcome Center this Sunday, January 13. If you would like a box, please stop by, we have extras.
2018 Giving statements which summarize your donations for 2018, will be available Sunday, January 20 in the narthex.
If you did not complete a Commitment for 2019 giving, there are extra forms available in the Welcome Center. Thank you to all for your continued support of the programs of First Church!

Joys and Concerns

Please hold the following in prayer this week: Charlotte Holzman, Helen Kuntz, Mary Ann Litwiller, Bev Duncan, Roy Jacobs, Chuck Waity, Lynn Peterson, and Leigh Roberts .


Lost and Found
Do you have the sense that you're missing something? Can't find that thing you thought you had? Come visit the Welcome Center's Lost and Found! We have quite a collection of items gathered over the last few months - coats, eyeglasses, coffee mugs, etc. Stop on by Sunday thru Thursday and check it out or call us at 608-256-9061 or email.

Grocery Bags Needed!
Please drop off any grocery bags you can donate in the narthex, for use by our Hope's Home Ministries and food pantry.

Coffee Sponsorship
Our weekly coffee hour is in need of sponsors! You can help by signing up on the poster near the Welcome Center. There are three sponsor spots for each Sunday, and the donation is $30-35 per spot. Dedications are welcome too, when you support coffee, food, and fellowship! Thank you!

Have an event or announcement you'd like printed here? Email us your submission by 10 a.m. on the Tuesday prior. Please note that all announcements are subject to edit.

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