A Weekly Newsletter of The First United Methodist Church
Friday, January 6
Sunday Worship
Epiphany and Baptism of the Lord
Message: Rev. Dr. Mark A. Fowler
Text: Matthew 3:13-17
Music: Chancel Choir, Quadrilateral Quartet
Worship: 9 a.m. & 10:30 a.m., Sanctuary
Coffee Fellowship: 8:30-10:30 a.m., Fellowship Hall
Climate Justice Book Study
Sunday, January 8 
1 p.m., Fellowship Hall

Start the New Year off on a thoughtful, hopeful note with this four-part study of the book Climate Justice: A Call to Hope and Action. All ages are invited to join the inter-congregational dialogue. Sessions will meet at First Church and several other Madison churches during January and February.
De-decorators Wanted
Wednesday, January 11
11 a.m. - 3 p.m.

After our Epiphany celebration on Sunday it will be time to put away the Christmas decorations for another year. If you are available to help please stop by the church next Wednesday anytime between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m. to lend a hand. Thank you!
Out of Town Over Christmas? Sermons Available Online

Welcome back! You can catch up on what happened in worship at First Church by viewing sermons or listening to entire services on the Sermons page of our website.
Christmas Community Meal Brought Joy to All
Wednesday, January 11
11 a.m. - 3 p.m.

This year, the theme of our Christmas Community Meal was best described by John Haines as he responded to how it felt to lead the meal: "Joy and happiness. It was a day full of happiness." Our volunteers helped spread joy as they served nearly 300 individuals with music by Cliff Frederiksen and Christmas carols enjoyed by all. 

Check out some of our media coverage of this year's Christmas Community Meal:
WORT Radio interviewed Karen Andro and John Haines
Go to WORT Radio archive link and select WORT Local News - Thursday, December 22, 6:00 p.m. The interview is 17:35 into the audio. This interview will be available online until February 20, 2017.
Million Pound Challenge On Again

Second Harvest and the Princeton Club are joining up again this year to help food pantry partners earn pounds of food.  It 's easy to participate: Click the link below to register, then sign up for our church team, "FUMC Food Pantry " and choose for your earnings to go to "First United Methodist Church Food Pantry ".  Select whether you are tracking exercise time or weight lost. Then weekly go on line and record your results.  For every exercise hour or pound of weight loss, the Princeton Club will donate 10 pounds of food to our Food Pantry.   Last year we received the equivalent of $350 of food.   Have fun!
Wesleyan Covenant Renewal
Worship, Lunch and Program
Sunday, January 22

"Come, let us join ourselves to the Lord in an everlasting covenant which will never be forgotten."

It was John Wesley's tradition in worship at the first of each New Year to include a renewal of one's covenant with God. Wesley's Covenant Prayer and other parts of the Covenant service will shape worship at both 9:00 and 10:30 on January 22. To learn more about our Wesleyan heritage, lunch and a program presented by Pastor Fowler will be offered following worship, including a display of Wesley's works and various memorabilia. The lunch will be provided with a suggested free-will donation of $6 per person, but please register for lunch so we are well prepared for everyone. Sign up for lunch no later than Tuesday, January 17 by contacting the church office or adding your name to the list at the Info Desk in the Narthex.
Or call the office at 608-338-0545
Seeking and Serving God in a Time of Public Turmoil
New Adult Class:  facilitated by Rev. Dr. Mel Vance
Six-week series beginning Sunday, January 22, 10:30 a.m. (also offered Tuesday evenings in February)

What authority can the Bible have when culture and society seem to have moved beyond the reach of our past versions of biblical teaching? How is the relationship between God and the world going? How do we form relationships with contemporaries when progressive Christianity doesn't seem to be high on their list of attractive options? Judeo-Christian biblical tradition affirms that through the study of "the Word" faithful communities have found and will again find theological wisdom and spiritual courage to address these and other questions. Please consider participating in these study sessions for your own sake and for the sake of our collective usefulness in these times.
Joys & Concerns
We extend our sympathy and prayers to Randy Schmitgen upon the death of his mother, Alma Schmitgen, on Tuesday, December 27.
Would you like to help reset the Sanctuary furniture between worship services on Sundays? Help with this light lifting is needed between 10:10 and 10:20 a.m. on Sunday mornings. We hope to develop a monthly schedule, so this will not be an every Sunday commitment. Please contact Ross Cowing if you are interested.
Contact Ross >  or Call 608-338-0545
Bring Commitment Cards This Sunday
If you have been meaning to turn in your 2017 commitment card this Sunday will afford a perfect opportunity for you. As part of our Epiphany celebration during worship we will be bringing our offerings to the front of the Sanctuary. Please consider brining your commitment and join the procession of the magi. 
Church Women United to Honor Steve Schooler
Saturday, January 7, 9 a.m., Bethany UMC
The Human Rights Award will be presented to First Church member Steve Schooler, Executive Director of Porchlight, for his many years of leadership of this organization.  Learn More >
Adjourned Session of Church Conference
Monday, January 16, 6:30 p.m., Fellowship Hall
The evening will begin with a brief worship service of remembrance in honor of the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday. Then we will review the church's work this past year and look forward to our new plans.
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Madison, WI 53703