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First United Methodist Church, 72 Lake Morton Dr, Lakeland, FL 33801


Sunday, July 18, 2021

8:15am Worship on the Lawn

Bring a chair and join our lawn worship.

Rev. Nicki Taylor will lead worship

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8:15am, Sanctuary

9:30am, Fellowship Center

11am, Sanctuary

We are still studying "Soul Reset"

It's Not All on You - Luke 10:38-43

Rev. David McEntire will lead worship

11am, Fellowship Center

Rev. Nicki Taylor will lead


Serving Opportunity!

We’re looking for some servant-hearted tech-minded people to serve in our adult Sunday School ministry as tech angels. We have returned to our classrooms for adult Sunday School and most classes are meeting in a hybrid way – both in-person and online via videoconference (Zoom or UberConference). We need tech-savvy folks who can think on their feet and address issues that might arise. Training and orientation are provided. Contact Warren for more information or call: 863-686-3163 x227.

We need to find CURRENT addresses for the following members. Please look over this list and contact Maggie should you be able to help: Leah Carroll, Alexander Carson, Bill and Ellen Casey, Zachary Chrystal Keith and Linda Clairmont, Andrea, Howard, Kristin and Lacey Clark, David Cobb, Carla and Joseph Cody, Rosalie Collins, Beverly and Daniel Cone, Kenneth Cooper, II, Dan and Pam Corban, Mary DeyArmin, Sean Finney, Arthur Fitzwater, Jenna Forrest, Austin Fudge, Tiffeny and William Gerstler, Lisa Gilbert, Debra Stump and Jasminie Watkins.

Hospitalized (As of July 12)

Eleanor Gardner, Julie Holman, Charles Lake,

Flay Linderman, Michelle Price, Tom Wilson and

Sandra Yoakam



For information regarding Children's ministries, contact Cristi Moore

Children’s 9:30 Sunday School Reservations Now Open for July 18

Classes are offered for Toddlers - Grade 5. Masks required for adults and children Kindergarten and older. A weekly Reservation will be required as class size will be limited for social distancing.   

Never Miss Sunday School Again!

Here is a great way for your child to keep up with Sunday School when they are not able to attend in person. You can access this any time during the week click here.  There are rooms for each age level that include Bible stories, activities, games, devotions and much more. For more information, contact Cristi Moore


For more information regarding our Youth Ministry events, contact Emily

Youth Group this Sunday, 5-7pm in F1

Dinner, games, worship and group activity. Make sure to check the Youth Enews for planned activities and ways to get more involved. For more information contact Emily.

Soul Reset Resources 

As we journey through our sermon series and Junius Dotson’s book Soul Reset, be sure to visit our website and social accounts for soul nourishing content. We will be posting videos and reminders of practices to apply the lessons we’re learning to our lives as we journey toward wholeness together. Visit for videos from Rev. Dotson (password is Dotson2021), info on an online course through The Upper Room, and additional supplemental materials. Daily prompts for the week’s spiritual practices are posted on Facebook and Instagram.

Serving Opportunity!

We’re looking for some servant-hearted tech-minded people to serve in our adult Sunday School ministry as tech angels. We have returned to our classrooms for adult Sunday School and most classes are meeting in a hybrid way – both in-person and online via videoconference (Zoom or UberConference). We need tech-savvy folks who can think on their feet and address issues that might arise. Training and orientation are provided. Contact Warren or call

863-686-3163 x227.

Followers of the Way: Men of all ages are invited to join us each Wednesday at 12 noon for the Followers of the Way Men’s Bible Study and prayer. Bring a sack lunch and join us in room C-204 or online via Zoom. We explore the Bible passage for the upcoming Sunday’s sermon. Contact Warren for more information or call, 863-686-3163 x227.

Sunday School for Adults

Our Adult Sunday School classes have relaunched in a hybrid format with person meetings and the ability to join online. Visitors are welcome to participate in any of these classes. Classes begin at 9:30am. For more information on connecting with a particular class, email Warren.


  • BYKOTA (Be Ye Kind One To Another) in person in room C-207. You may also join online or via Conference Call to (863) 250-1152. We welcome Rev. Doug Hallman to the lectern to teach his lesson series “David: From Kid to King” during July and August. The July 18 lesson is “The Calling of David” based on I Samuel 1-17.
  • Genesis room C-202 and via Zoom. Email Diana for the Zoom link. In conjunction with the sermon series, they are currently journeying through the book Soul Reset by Junius Dotson.
  •  Homebuilders room C-201B. You may also join online email Warren or via Conference Call to (863) 250-1141. This is our longest-running Sunday school class, having started in the 1940s. Rev. Brian Tiffany teaches from the Standard Lesson Series Bible study. The current theme is “Faith and Salvation” with the July 18 lesson “Faith of Abraham” based on Romans 4:1-12.
  • Koinonia room C-205 and via Zoom (email Warren for link). The class welcomes all who desire to grow in their love of God and neighbor. July 18, we continue our study of world religions as we look at Unitarian Universalism. Rev. Terry Heck teaches.
  • Searchers room C-206 and via Zoom (email Warren for link). The Searchers class is open to all who are searching for Christian community. They are exploring the book Courage: Jesus and the Call to Brave Faith by Tom Berlin. Dr. Linda Comer is leading. Videos for the lessons are available on Amplify Media.
  • Sendero room C-204 and via Zoom. Email Warren for Zoom link. The class is studying Renegade Gospel, a book by pastor Mike Slaughter, with Jim Cottrell facilitating.
  • Vanguard room C-207, via Conference Call to (863) 250-1038 or online (email Warren for link). This class uses the Adult Bible Studies series. July’s theme is “The People Next Door” exploring the theme of neighbor. Bible texts come from Proverbs, Leviticus, Ruth, the Gospels and Acts. Rev. Charles Polstra is teaching. Supplemental videos for the lessons are available on Amplify Media. 


Stepping into Your Loved-Ones Reality: Is it lying or compassion?

Who doesn’t enjoy being surrounded by people who make you feel understood and supported? The need to be validated is important to everyone, especially to those living with memory loss. But so often, care partner’s, friends, family, and even professionals who support people living with dementia or Alzheimer’s disease lack the understanding of the importance of recognizing that people with memory loss have thoughts, feelings, concerns, and wishes that need to be understood and validated.

At one time, “reality orientation” was the most common form of communicating with people living with dementia. The purpose of reality orientation is to disrupt cognitive decline by stimulating the confused individual by reinforcing name, date, time, and other facts. Trying to orient a person with significant memory loss is asking the person to do something they are not capable of.  Early on, “nursing homes” used colorful calendars and large clocks in each room so every time staff or family member entered the room, the person was prompted to be “grounded” in reality. Unfortunately this only caused distress and behavioral symptoms, as the person was really being asked to be in our reality. This still happens today with family members or caregivers who do not understand the importance of entering their reality, and arguments are constant.

In very early stage of memory loss, gentle reminders of the day of week (reality orientation) can be helpful, but once the person becomes more confused and disoriented and believes and argues that it is Wednesday when it is Friday, validating their reality and redirecting works best.

“Validation therapy” is a proven, non-pharmaceutical method of communication developed by American social worker and gerontologist Naomi Feil. She was born in Germany, and her parents came to the US and she said she “was raised in a home for the aged,” where both parents held administrative positions. She recognized even as a child that taking a more empathetic approach when communicating with the more confused residents kept them calmer and happier. Using validation therapy is a much kinder and effective way to communicate and causes less stress and anxiety for everyone

But is it lying? Many family members and friends feel being untruthful is wrong and they continue to correct, scold and argue with their family member, repeatedly asking them “why can’t you remember it is 2021 not 1941?" Trying to convince a person with cognitive decline who claims “Christmas is coming” and correcting them that it is February and we just had Christmas, only confuses, frustrates them and results in arguments and conflicts. Using the outdated method to keep people in ‘reality’ is especially difficult for the person when he/she is told of a death of someone they love. For example, confronting a family member who can’t remember the death of their mother 30 years ago each time they ask “when is mother coming to visit,” is harmful to the person. “Reminding” the person that their mother is dead over and over is not helpful because hearing the news of the death is always hearing it for a first time, and grief can be overwhelming.

So is being “in the moment” with your family member and providing comfort and security by validating their feelings really lying, or is it just showing compassion? The next time you are tempted to argue, “remind” or correct inaccurate comments from your loved-one such as when he/she is thinking Christmas is around the corner, ask yourself if is it more important for you to be correct and tell them it is February, or validate how much you both love Christmas and just “go with the flow.” Joining them in their reality can be a caring and joyful moment to share.

If you would like more information on our Memory Ministry or need tips on caregiving, please contact Vicky Pitner.

For more information on Missions, contact Forrest White, (863)686-3163x224

We have changed our Collection Days!

Our monthly food collection moves to the first Sunday each month with our August 1 collection. Because many are opting to drop food donations in the blue bins we are shortening the collection time to 1-3pm at the Missions Depot on the Vistabula Street side of the church. We will collect food for our migrant ministry partners and for Volunteers in Service to the Elderly (VISTE). You may also drop donations in the blue collection bins on campus during regular office hours or on Sunday mornings. Volunteers at First United will sort donations. You do not need to separate items.

Mulberry UMC and Called to Serve Farmworkers request:

Rice (maximu pinto and black, maximum 12-pound bags, no cans)

Maseca flour m 12-pound bags)

Dried Beans (

Spaghetti sauce

Peanut butter

Canned tuna and chicken

Vienna sausage

Canned veggies (especially corn)

Jiffy Cornbread mix

Breakfast cereal

VISTE requests these boxed food donations only:


Instant or scalloped potatoes

Cake Mixes

Muffin mixes

Crackers (saltines, Ritz)


Breakfast cereal

Please provide only requested items and NO glass jars.

First United Methodist Church




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