Join us for Welcome Home this Sunday
First Church News & Updates - April 13, 2018

Tax Day
It is everyone's favorite time of time. Hopefully, you have already finished and filed your tax return. If not, you have a couple of extra days since April 15 is on Sunday. The deadline is April 17 this year. "The only difference between death and taxes is that death doesn't get worse every time Congress meets." -- Will Rogers, humorist and social commentator, died in 1935.

On the other hand, several restaurants and stores have Tax Day freebies and discounts!

Enjoy this First Church News!
This week in worship...
Sermon Series

Sermon Title: "Welcome to the Dance"
Scripture: John 6:35-44; 1 John 4:10-12

Dr. Will Cotton will preach at the 8:30, 9:40 and 11 am worship services. Liturgists include Rev. Dr. Van Dickens at 8:30 am and Dr. John Clifford at 11 am.

The Source, our weekly devotional guide, is available on the church website. Please join us in worship this weekend...Sunday at 8:30 am (Sanctuary), 9:40 am (Family Life Center) or 11 am (Sanctuary).
Words from Will...
Doing the Basics
When I was playing basketball, there was part of every practice that was all about the basics - dribbling, passing, moving forward-backward and side-to-side, full-court fast break layups, and shooting foul shots. Doing those basics are not necessarily showy or always fun, but they do make the difference in the game, and even how far a team will go in pursuing a championship. 

Dr. Will Cotton
Dr. Will Cotton
The same is true of our Christian life: daily prayer (developing our speaking and listening with God), study of God's word (tuning our minds and our hearts), regular attendance in worship, giving of our time and resources, and sharing our faith in small and large ways. These are basics most people never see, but they make a huge difference in the depth of our walk with Christ, the quality of our lives, and the impact we have on those around us.

This past week, at the encouragement of our SPRC and my District Superintendent, I took some time away. I appreciated Brad coming and preaching for me. That gave me the chance to rest and to work a little more intentionally on the basics that often suffer when we get over busy.

Our sermon series,  Have You Met Grace, is also about the basics...the basics of our journey of faith with Christ. I am convinced, as much as we sing, teach and preach about grace, it is one of the least understood, received or shared parts of our faith. I look forward to our practice time this Sunday. I hope you will be there ready to go at 8:30, 9:40 or 11:00 am.

Sincerely in Christ,
Will Cotton Signature
Dr. Will Cotton
Senior Pastor
What's coming up at First Church? POPS!
What a Feeling! POPS Handbell Concert - Ticket distribution begins this Sunday!
Join us for this handbell concert, benefiting Boys to Men of God & Daughters of the King. The musical menu includes old Hollywood, current and 70's pop, classical and original works! Ticket distribution begins for reserved table seating begins at 9:30 on Sunday, April 15 outside the north entrance to the Sanctuary.  Most tables seat 6 people. These tickets are free of charge. Ten premium tables are available for a donation of $100 each. These premium round tables seat 8. Tickets are also available during the week through our church office. There will be additional seating during the concert only portion of the evening at 6:30 pm. No ticket is needed for this chair seating.  Click for all the details...
Ministry Focus
Children's Ministry
We need you to be a VBS Crew Leader!
Vacation Bible School will be opening registration up to the community next week, but on a limited basis.  If you are able to volunteer from 8:30 am -12:15 pm either June 18-22 or June 25-29, please sign up online ASAP! The more volunteers we have, the more slots available for children to come and learn about the love of Jesus!  Click here for more information and to volunteer!
J-Team is this Sunday, April 15
J-Team Reminder! Our awesome bowling event is this Sunday, April 15. We will meet from 2 - 4 pm at Uncle Buck's Fishing Bowl in the Bass Pro Shop.  Due to a generous donation from a J-Team family, the cost is only $7.00 and includes bowling with friends, bowling shoes, and pizza!

Please RSVP to Tammy Parks,,  if you have not signed up but wish to attend!
Twin Oaks Cafe
We need some volunteers in the Twin Oaks Cafe this month!
The Twin Oaks Cafe is staffed by a different ministry/mission group each month and April is the month for Children's Ministry. All proceeds from the cafe will benefit Vacation Bible School 2018. We need some volunteers. If you can spare a couple of hours on a Sunday morning, we would love to have your help. 

Student Ministry
Welcome Party

Calling all 5th - 8th Graders...Welcome Party May 11-12
The end of the school year is quickly approaching. That means that it is almost time to welcome our new Middle School students! All of our current Middle School students as well as current 5th graders are invited to this fun night of celebration to officially welcome the 5th graders into Student Ministries. The overnight party starts in the Family Life Center at 9:30 pm. After worship, games, fellowship and fun, the students will head over to Spare Time (via RRISD buses) for a night full of pizza, soda, laser tag, mini golf, bowling, video games and sleep deprived fun. We will return back to the church to Round Rock Donuts and just in time for you to pick your students up at 6 am. Additionally, parents of 5th graders, there is a parent meeting on Sunday, April 29 at 11 am in Bldg. 5- 223/224 to give you more information about Student Ministries. Click here for more info and to register...
Confirmation 2018
Over the past few months our  Confirmation  students have been on a journey. They have been studying the Bible, what it means to be a Christian and what Methodists believe. They have fulfilled classroom time, service hours, visiting other congregations and a  Confirmation  Retreat. Most importantly they are on this journey so that they may claim their faith as their o wn.  On  Sunday, April 22, at 5 pm  in the Sanctuary  33 students will be Confirmed.  This is an important milestone in the lives of these young people and we ask that the congregation pray for these students and join us as we celebrate them! 

We also have three students who will be baptized at our Baptism and Communion Service at  6pm on  Sunday, April 15, in the Family Life Center. The Congregation is welcome to join us at both of these services as we celebrate with these students!
More from Student Ministries...  
Adult Ministry
Adult Christian Education
Do You Lead a Bible Study, Sunday School Class or Other Adult  Educational Opportunity? 
Join us on April 15 at 4:30 pm.  The Adult Christian Education Council invites all small group leaders to an  ACE Council Information Exchange on  Sunday, April 15, at 4:30 pm in Bldg.5-127. There are lots of creative things happening in our adult programs! ACE Council is hosting this forum to exchange ideas and discuss what works and what doesn't in facilitating lifelong Christian education. Join us for cookies, coffee and discussion.
New Book Study
New study begins April 22
Discovering Life-Truths Analogies from Nature Scenes  begins April 22, 9:40 am in Bldg. 5-148. The study will be led by First Church member and acclaimed photographer, Ted Keller. It will be based on his devotional book,  Fifty Feisty Photos for Daily Encouragement. 

Ted says, "As a nature photographer with a 'glass-half-full' outlook, I began to recognize visual analogies of motivational life-truths in my images as I recalled relevant Bible verses. Since the level of optimism in our attitudes and self-concepts affects our ability to cope, heal, grow, and excel in life, these energizing reminders can empower and strengthen us in all situations." 

All are welcome. No registration needed.

More from Adult Ministries...  
Caring Ministry
Compassion Fatigue
Compassion: The Good, the Bad & the Ugly
Our Stephen Ministry, in partnership with the Friends and Seekers Sunday School Class, will host this session on Sunday, May 6, at 9:40 am in Bldg. 5-232.

Conrad Sloat, First Church member and Licensed Counselor will be leading this one-time class for those feeling the fatigue of compassionate caregiving. It is also for those feeling overwhelmed by recent natural disasters and current diagnoses of family and friends. All are welcome. 
MIssion Focus
Heifer Project

Children's Ministry Mission for Spring is the Heifer Project
For the entire spring semester, all children's Sunday School offerings are going toward the purchase of livestock for needy families. Each class selected a certain animal as their goal to purchase. Heifer International puts faith into action with its time proven principle of passing on the gift. Every family who receives livestock agrees to pass on one or more of its animal's offspring to another neighbor in need.

Heifer Project

4.8.2018 Update: Children have brought in over $1300 for the Heifer Mission Project! Several classes have met their goals and have set new ones. The fifth grade class is getting very close to purchasing the most expensive animal of all:  a heifer! Keep up the good work!
This week at First Church
Saturday, April 14
  • 3:00 pm - Memorial service for Linda Simmering, Sanctuary
Sunday, April 15
  • 8:30, 9:40 and 11 am - Worship services
  • 8:30 am - LifeGroup-Spiritual Growth, Bldg. 4- Rm 2
  • 11:00 am - Life Groups, Bldg. 5-124, 148, & 222
  • 11:30 am - Alleluia Chorus Children's Choir, Bldg. 4-Rm 2
  • 12:15 pm - Welcome Home, Bldg. 3/FLC
  • 2:00 pm - J-Team, off campus
  • 4:30 pm - Adult Christian Education Council Exchange, Bldg. 5-127
  • 5:00 pm - Youth Choir rehearsal, South Suite
  • 6-8 pm - Fusion , Bldg. 3/FLC 
Monday, April 16
  • 8:00 am - JOY Senior Fellowship Trip to San Antonio
  • 4:00 pm - Kids of the Kingdom Bells rehearsal, Bldg. 3/FLC
  • 6:00 pm - Venture Crew, Bldg. 3/FLC
  • 7:00 pm - Boy Scout Troop #157, Bldg. 3/FLC
  • 7:00 pm - Communications Team, Bldg. 5-124
Tuesday, April 17
  • 8:30 am - UMM Tuesday Breakfast group, Ju├írez Restaurant on South Mays
  • 8:45 am - Ring of Joy rehearsal, North Suite
  • 9:30 am - Women's Bible Study, Bldg. 5-122
  • 9:30 am - First Church Crafters, 115 Winsted
  • 12:30 pm - Brown Bag Theologians, Bldg. 5-124
  • 6:30 pm - Stephen Ministry Supervision, Bldg. 5-123, 126, 127
  • 7:00 pm - Finance Committee, Bldg. 5-124
Wednesday, April 18
  • 6:15 am - UMM Breakfast, fellowship, & devotional, FLC/Bldg.3
  • 9:30 am - Disciple Bible Studies, Bldg. 5
  • 9:30 am - Women's Bible Study, Bldg. 5-232/234
  • 5:00 pm - Revelation Ringers Tins, FLC-East Cry Room
  • 5:00 pm - Revelation Ringers Bronze, North Suite 
  • 6:00 pm - HeartSong Choir rehearsal, South Suite
  • 6:30 pm - Disciple Bible Studies, Bldg. 5
  • 6:30 pm - Women's Bible Study, Bldg. 5-232/234
  • 7:00 pm - Jubilation Bell rehearsal, North Suite
  • 7:15 pm - Chancel Choir rehearsal, South Suite
Thursday, April 19
  • 9:30 am - Heart to Heart Quilters, 115 Winsted
  • 10:30 am - Memorial service for Larry "Lucky" Stewart, Sanctuary
  • 7:00 pm - Council Oak Bells rehearsal, North Suite
  • 7:00 pm - Orchestra rehearsal, South Suite
Friday, April 20
  • 8:30 am - Round Rock Helpers, Bldg. 4-2
  • 9:30 am - Ministry of Motherhood (MOM), Bldg. 5-232/234
  • 8:00 pm - Narcotics Anonymous-Right Stuff, Bldg. 4
Saturday, April 21
  • 6:30 pm - Bridge Club, Bldg. 5-127

There is always a lot going on at First Church. Visit the website, find us on Facebook or Twitter, and check the  Church Calendar so you don't miss out! 
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