This Sunday
Sunday, December 8
2nd Sunday of Advent
Preacher: Rev. Taylor Fuerst
Scripture: Isaiah 11:1-10, Matthew 3:1-12
Sermon: “Peace: Repentance Can’t Wait
Advent Visual Art Collection
During Advent, an Advent Visual Art Collection is available in Murchison Chapel and the Family Life Center foyer. All are invited to view a collection of 13 visuals inspired by Scripture texts for Advent. Artist statements are provided with theological reflections on the process for creating the artwork.
What Can or Can't Wait?
As we move through this season of Advent, what CAN'T wait in our lives and in our world? What CAN wait, and be set aside for more urgent and important things? All are invited to answer these questions on the back wall of the Sanctuary or in the Family Life Center foyer.
Advent & Christmas Banner
Help us create a colorful banner by participating in its creation in Murchison Chapel. Stop by and add color to the banner with materials provided.
Sock Drive for Feed My People
Place sock donations for our Christmas Eve Breakfast in the collection bins of the Sanctuary and FLC Foyers starting this Sunday through December 22.
Advent Visio Divina Study
Sundays, December 8 & 15, 10:00 a.m., EDU Murchison Chapel
Visio Divina, latin for “divine seeing,” is a method of meditation, reflection, and prayer through a process of intentional seeing. This class, led by Cindy Walter, blends visual meditation with group discussion and Bible study. Register Here .
Christmas Poinsettia Sale
Order by Sunday, December 8
Poinsettias on the communion rails, around the trees, in the foyers...a great way to celebrate someone you love or who is now in God's hands. Cost is $12 per plant. Plants can be picked up after worship on Sunday, December 22 and Christmas Eve.  Order Online .
Calling All Women
Sunday, December 8, 2019, 12:15 p.m.
FLC Garrison Chapel
Join the United Methodist Women of First Church for a Holiday Round-Up informational meeting. Not an “official” United Methodist Woman? No worries! We’ll introduce ourselves and share an overview of who we are and what we do, so you can find a circle that fits—or maybe even create your own. The UMW has been advocating for women and children for 150 years—you can help make the next 150 even better. We’ll have a light lunch; children (and men) welcome! Register your attendance so we can plan for lunch. Register Here .
At a Glance
Click on the links below to learn more.
Service Spotlight
Cold Weather Shelter , As Needed
Sock Collection , 12/01-12/22
Cookie Collection , 12/15-12/22
Manna Bag Sale , 12/15

 Children's News
Kids' Day Out , 12/14
Baby Brunch , 01/12
VBS Save the Date , 7/19-23
Click here to view the full FUMC calendar.
Decorating and Holiday Stroll
Saturday, December 7, 4:00-9:00 p.m.
SAN Wesley Hall
Kick off your holiday by decorating spaces around the church and then offering hospitality to Austinites of all ages heading to and coming from the Holiday Stroll. We begin with decorating the Sanctuary, Murchison Chapel, Family Life Center, and outdoor spaces. Afterward, volunteers share a meal and then welcome guests on the front steps with hot chocolate and cookies and a welcome family-friendly pit stop. For parents/guardians who are volunteering during the decorating from 4:00-6:00 p.m., childcare for Infants-Preschool is available and fun activities are planned for elementary-aged children (Kinder – 5th grades). Sign up for our decorating team, hospitality team, and childcare at .
Ushers Needed
Want to be an Usher or Greeter? You can be part of a team that continues to make FUMC one of the most welcoming congregations in Texas. Being an usher or greeter is an excellent opportunity to meet other members, make new friends, and welcome visitors to FUMC Austin. Your commitment would only be one Sunday a month at either the 9:00 or 11:00 service from January-June, 2020. If you are interested, contact Richard Bettis at 512-657-7641 or [email protected] . He will send you all of the information. Won’t you please consider joining us? We guarantee you will find it most rewarding.
Audio/Visual Volunteers Needed
We all enjoy the seamless use of media in our worship services—both visuals on the screens and sound we can hear. The Audio/Visual Team needs two volunteers at the media center in the balcony each week: one to run worship slides and one to adjust audio. No experience is necessary and training is provided. Commitment is one Sunday per month from 8:15 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. with a break from 10:00-10:45 a.m. All of the slides are provided and your role is to operate the slideshow and/or audio. If you are interested, or know of someone who might be, please contact Dave Ballbach at [email protected] .
Children's Christmas Giving
December 8-January 5
In the spirit of Christmas giving, our Children’s Ministry Team invites children to bring toiletry items for the children and their families living at Casa Marianella. This is the only homeless shelter in Austin dedicated solely to immigrants. 65% of shelter residents, including children, are asylum seekers, many coming from immigration detention. Full size items needed: children: toothbrushes, toothpaste and tearless shampoo and adults—shampoo; conditioner; razors; and soap. Donations can be placed at the Children’s Christmas Tree in the Sanctuary Foyer. 
Kids' Day Out
Saturday, December 14, 10:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m.
EDU Room 102
While parents enjoy a morning out, children play, eat pizza, make holiday crafts, decorate gingerbread houses, and watch a movie with our trained childcare staff. We accept infants through fourth graders. The cost is $25 for the first child and $10 for siblings. Register Now .
Cookie Collection
Begins December 15
We are collecting chocolate chip cookies (6 per bag, no nuts) to provide guests at the Christmas Eve Breakfast. Place in collection bins in the Sanctuary and Family Life Center Foyers December 15-22.
FUMC Choir Presentation
Sunday, December 15, 9:00 & 11:00 a.m., Sanctuary
Come sing praise to God and celebrate through the gifts of others with a special musical offering by our FUMC choir during worship.
Children's Choir Presentation: Carriers of the Light
Sunday, December 15, 10:15 a.m.
The Children’s choir presents their Christmas musical, “Carriers of the Light.” This creative Christmas musical is inspired by scriptural passages focusing on Jesus as the Light of Salvation. Through traditional carols and original music, it celebrates the passing of God's light from Mary to Joseph to the animals in the manger; from the shepherds in the countryside to the Wise Men in the East. 
Civil Rights Pilgrimage Meeting
Sunday, December 15, 12:15 p.m.
EDU Murchison Chapel
Our Civil Rights Pilgrimage is set for March 15-21, 2020. This seven-day trip for adults, youth, and families will take us through Jackson, Selma, Montgomery, Birmingham, and Memphis. Those interested in participating should attend this meeting to hear final details and participate in logistics. Register for the trip at . A $250 deposit per person is due January 1. For more information, Pastor Cathy Stone at [email protected] .
Sunday, December 15, 7:00-8:30 p.m.
FLC Garrison Chapel
FEAST is a monthly dinner gathering for young adults (roughly ages 20–45) to build community and dig into the more difficult side of faith together. Come join us for a special HOLIDAY FEAST and dive into a discussion of your favorite Christmas myths and traditions. We'll have some great conversation with a side of ham and mashed potatoes. Crazy holiday attire is encouraged! Register Here .
Blue Christmas Service
Thursday, December 19, 7:00 p.m.
EDU Murchison Chapel
How come I don’t feel it? In the midst of the wonder and expectation of Advent, many of us might feel out of step with the joy and excitement of Christmas. Some of us have lost loved ones or face the “happy” holidays feeling blue with grief or depression. Senior Pastor Taylor Fuerst leads this special worship service on the longest night to acknowledge our grief and longing for hope.
Wait! That's Not the Christmas Story
Sunday, December 22, 10:00 a.m.
SAN Wesley Hall
Join Dr. Brad King for a deep dive into the Christmas story that we all know and love. While the popular versions of this story are, in Brad's words, "a mess of mixed up myths," he also insists that a more accurate version of the story is just as beautiful and even more relevant to Christian life and love. In addition to riveting conversation, we’ll have plenty of hot cocoa and cookies to keep everyone’s spirits high! Register Here .
Feed My People Christmas Eve Breakfast
Tuesday, December 24
6:30 a.m., FLC Great Hall
Breakfast will be held from 6:30-8:30 a.m. Our guests enjoy coffee and Christmas music beginning at 6:30 a.m., breakfast will be served at 7:00 a.m. Volunteers are also needed to prepare food and decorate on Monday, December 23. Many in our congregation have made these volunteer opportunities a significant part of their Christmas season. Spaces fill fast. Sign Up Now .
Christmas Eve Noon Service
12:00 p.m., Murchison Chapel
This traditional service features carols, Scripture reading, and Holy Communion and is ideal for those who wish to celebrate early and for those whose plans make it impossible to participate in our later services.

Christmas Eve Family Service
4:00 p.m.*, Sanctuary
Experience the traditions of Christmas carols, the Nativity story, Holy Communion, and a candlelit "Silent Night" in this 45-minute worship service especially designed for families with young children.

Christmas Eve Candlelight & Communion
6:00*, 8:00* & 11:00 p.m., Sanctuary
These traditional services feature carols, Scripture, Holy Communion, and candle lighting to celebrate Christ’s birth.

*Childcare is provided during the 4:00 p.m. Family Service and 6:00 and 8:00 p.m. Candlelight Services.
Service Project Sunday
Sunday, December 29, 10:00 a.m.
SAN Wesley Hall
Let’s end the year caring for our neighbors! All ages and stages are invited to gather for conversation and projects that will make a difference in the world. All Sunday School classes are invited to participate. There will be no regular Sunday School for children or youth. 
End-of-Year Giving Reminder
Our church office will be closed December 24-January 1, but we will be open 9:00 a.m.-1:00 p.m. on December 30 and 31, to accept year-end gifts. Please note that IRS regulations require that contributions for 2019 must be mailed and postmarked no later than December 31, 2019. Contributions received after January 1 or in the mail and postmarked in 2020 will be considered 2020 gifts.
Epiphany Party
Sunday, January 5, 10:00 a.m. FLC Great Hall
Start your new year with joy by celebrating Christ’s light in the world with your church family. Families, individuals, children, and adults all are welcome! Children and youth will not have regular Sunday School class that day, so bring the whole family to the party! Want to get more involved? Sign up to bring food items, help with activities, or bake some Epiphany cupcakes. Sign Up Here .
Financial Peace University Information Session
Sunday, January 5, 12:15 p.m., FLC Garrison Chapel
Come learn about Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University, watch an introductory video, and pick up your materials for class beginning on Tuesday, January 14. Register Here .
Book Study: Shameless
Tuesdays, January 7, 14, 21, 28
6:30-7:45 p.m., FLC 104
Join Pastor Cathy Stone as we read and discuss Shameless by Nadia Bolz-Weber. 
Raw and intimate, this book offers a full-blown overhaul of our harmful and antiquated ideas about sex, gender, and our bodies. Some of the topics tackled in this book are: the Adam and Eve story, church history influences on LGBTQ acceptance, abortion, sexual trauma, divorce, and purity culture. This book study will be a safe space for all thoughts and opinions on these topics. Please purchase your book at a local bookstore or through Amazon. Register at .
Becoming a Better LGBTQ+ Ally
Saturday, January 11, 9:00 a.m.-12:00 p.m.
SAN Wesley Hall
Ally training provides a basic framework of understanding lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer & questioning (LGBTQ+) persons and the unique challenges they often face. This training is designed to create dialogue regarding what it means to be an effective ally. Participants are encouraged to explore their own biases, build their knowledge and understanding and develop empathy. Whether you already consider yourself an ally, or want to become one, this training can help each of us learn how to be a better neighbor to those within the FUMC-Austin community and beyond. A $15 donation at registration is requested. Please register at .  
Coffee with the Pastors
Sunday, January 12, 10:00-10:45 a.m.
SAN Parlor
Want to connect deeper in our FUMC community? Come visit with the pastors and lay leaders in this periodic series of coffee and conversation. The emphasis of this gathering will be our spring discipleship offerings. New and long-time members are invited to meet the teachers and discuss the classes being offered. Register at .
Baby Brunch
Sunday, January 12, 10:00-11:00 a.m., SAN Wesley Hall
Have a newborn or child under 18 months old? Our Children’s Ministry invites you to come enjoy this fun event filled with fellowship and food. We are excited to partner with you as you begin this incredible journey with your child. Please RSVP to [email protected] .
Financial Peace University
Tuesdays, January 14-March 10
6:30-8:00 p.m.
FLC Garrison Chapel
What if you had an emergency fund, were debt-free, investing, and making wise spending decisions for your family’s future? With Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace University, you CAN take control of your money. Freedom from debt is part of being free to follow Christ. Join members Ellis and Lisa Pittman for this personal finance class with a faith perspective. The cost is $99 per family. Register Here .
Loving Movie and Discussion
Sunday, January 19, 5:00-8:00 p.m.
Our Mercy & Justice Team and youth invite you to watch Loving , the story of Richard and Mildred Loving, a couple whose arrest for interracial marriage in 1960s Virginia began a legal battle that would end with the Supreme Court's historic 1967 decision. A short discussion will follow the movie. In support of the upcoming MLK March the following day, we will collect canned goods and/or non-perishable food items to be donated to the Central Texas Food Bank. Childcare is available by emailing [email protected] . Register at
MLK Day Community March
Monday, January 20, 9:00 a.m.
MLK Statue, UT Campus
The Annual Community March celebrates Dr. Martin Luther King’s legacy while uplifting diversity and multi-culturalism in our city. Following a short program at the MLK Statue, we will march to the historic Huston-Tillotson University, where exciting activities are planned. We can arrange carpools. Contact Pastor Cathy Stone at [email protected] .
Pre-teen Human Sexuality Course
January 31-February 1, 2020
Great Hall, Family Life Center
Wonderfully Made provides kids in 5th to 6th grades the opportunity to ask questions about growing up and get faith-based answers. The curriculum covers physical development and spiritual connection while helping pre-teens improve communication with their parents. Friday, January 31, 6:00 – 9:00 p.m. (participants), 6:00-7:30 p.m. (parents) - Dinner included Saturday, February 1, 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. (participants), 2:30-4:00 p.m. (parents) Pre-teens must be able to attend the full time on both days and at least one parent is required to attend both parent sessions. You may invite friends. Register Here .
VBS 2020 Save the Date
Winter is coming to next year’s VBS with Knights of the North Castle. Mark Monday-Thursday, July 20-23, on your calendars now so you can join the fun! Our kick-off party will be Sunday, July 19. Registration and volunteer sign up will be available in January. Register Here .
December Mission Emphasis
Christmas Offering - Family Life Center Kitchen
Each Christmas, we have an opportunity to provide transformation through our Christmas Offering, a gift to which we contribute, beyond our regular church giving. This year, the transformation we hope for is right at the corner of 13th and Lavaca Street: our Family Life Center Kitchen. The kitchen is a crucial part of our ministry and integral to the Feed My People Breakfast, our youth ministry dinners, First Steps, a variety of leadership meetings, and by other groups renting our facility. Several critical components of the kitchen are non-functioning or out of code. Working with architects and designers, we estimate the cost of renovation to be $315,000. We are kicking off this effort by raising $100,000 through our Christmas Offering. A lead donor has already committed $25,000; we need your help to reach our goal. We need everyone's help to make this new kitchen a reality. Please mark your check or gift with "Christmas Offering" in the offering plate or online. Give Now .
Prayer Concerns
Submit a prayer request online .
Within our Congregation
Stephanie Benold, Sandy Bowles, Kathy Morales, Sue Norris, Mari Perez, and Dan Wood.

Those struggling with grief during this holiday season.
Congratulations to Randy and Ann Teich on the birth of their grandson, Rory Carlisle Whitten.

Beyond our Congregation
Curt Ashmos’ friend, Elissa Marek; Grady Basler’s sister, Tonya Basler Stout; Marilyn Bettis’ friends, Whitney and Brandon; Cheryl Bias’ niece, Lauren Stafford; Bob Block’s friend, Tim Sullivan; Debbie Block’s cousin-in-law, David Schieve; Fay Brown’s sister, Jo Rene Altenburg; Sarah Crane’s mother, Evelyn Roper; Melanie Dow’s nephew, Jonas Ellwanger; George Gaston’s friend, Dr. Robert Wootton; Leroy Jones’ friend, Becky Stephenson; Melanie Miller’s and Jen Stuart’s father, Doak Thomas; Kelly Mills’ mother, Sandra Mills; Connie Payne’s sister and brother-in-law, Gary and Nancy Tidwell; Andrew Pyle’s father; Terri Purdy’s friend’s daughter, Clara June Stern; Dick and Camille Raycraft’s daughter, Dede Garrison; Cindy Reidland’s friends, Carly and Colton; Debbie Rippetoe’s cousin, Tucker Wheat; Barbara Ruth’s mother and sister, Jewel Ruth and Judy Davis; Kent Schuster’s siblings, David, Stan, and Suzanne; Alan Stephens’ brother, Millard Stephens; Danielle Thoma’s cousin, Brighton Mansour; Jason and Jennifer Veltri Curiel; Dick Young’s nephew, Jeff Young.

Condolences to the family and friends of Belinda Ligon on her death.
Stay Connected
Missed last week's sermon?
Listen online, subscribe to our iTunes Podcast or YouTube Channel.
Online Directory & Giving
Church Life enables members to connect, view giving history, schedule giving, and access the church calendar.
Follow Us
Join our Facebook Group !
Contact Us
First United Methodist Church
1201 Lavaca St. Austin, TX 78701
(512) 478-5684