April 24, 2020
Devotionals this week are provided by Stephen Ministers in-training.

Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. - James 1:2-3

There's no doubt about it: our planet, our society, our communities, our friends, our families, and our faith are all facing trials of many kinds right now. And while going through these trials it can seem impossible to find joy in it all.

Gloria Lee explains in Christianity Daily that, "Joy is a fruit of the Holy Spirit that is mentioned in Galatians 5:22. The Holy Spirit enables believers to express joy, even in the midst of hardships. God can use our suffering to serve His divine purposes and He can enable us to experience a deep level of profound joy. Miraculous events occur when God’s people experience joy in the midst of hardships.

An example of this is found in Acts 16, when Apostle Paul and Silas are imprisoned in a jail cell for casting a demon out of a slave girl. Paul and Silas pray and sing hymns to God at midnight, in the midst of persecution. The other prisoners hear them and soon afterwards, all of the inmates experience the power of God in a violent earthquake. The earthquake shakes the very foundations of the prison and causes everyone’s chains to come loose. The end result of this incident is the salvation of the jailer and his entire household."

Since March 12th, I've had to figure out how to work from home, how to home school my preschooler, and how to support my parents in moving from my childhood home without being able to physically assist them. I've had to find a new normal while still being present as a wife, mom, daughter, friend, and sister. And there's been plenty of days where I haven't found the joy in all these trials, but then my four year old started waking up every morning singing these lyrics from the song, Joy, by King and Country:

"I need that joy, joy, joy, joy
Down in my heart, down in my heart to stay
I need that joy, joy, joy, joy
Down in my heart, down in my heart to stay."

And I was reminded that there's joy in everything, it's just about finding it.

Spiritual Practice:
Look for the small things this week that bring you joy. Maybe it's the warm sunshine on your face as you go for a walk. Maybe it's the laughter of a family member. Maybe it's the fact that you have your favorite ice cream in your freezer. When you find those moments of joy, thank God. A simple, "thank you Lord" reminds us of all that we have and how how important it is to be in touch with the Holy Spirit; to be in touch with the joy down in our hearts.

-- Kate Whitney, Stephen Minister In-Training
St. John’s will live-stream a worship service Sunday morning at 9:30 am (Contemporary) on the Abide Facebook page and 11:00 am (Traditional) on the homepage of the website. We hope you’ll worship with us! (Pastors Pam and Kelly will lead, along with Shea Perry, Jim Ahrend, and Matt Greer). We hope that you’ll participate by singing and praying at home! Any questions? Email Matt at
The kids are continuing their study on humility and the story of Easter teaches us that Jesus put us first. We want to be just like Jesus. So as we go through our day, let’s focus on the following question: What keeps you from putting others first? How has putting others first changed over the last few weeks? As we remember the memory verse for the month (Philippians 2:3), ask God in your quiet prayer time today to help you put others first and to thank Jesus for putting us first.
Online Classes
The announcements below include using the program "Zoom" to group-video chat. You can find a tutorial on how to use Zoom HERE!

Wednesdays at 1:30 pm
Log in and have coffee (or tea) and chat with Pastors Pam and Kelly! Zoom link HERE. Wednesdays at 1:30 pm.

Thursdays at 1:30 pm
Join Pastor Pam for a 30-minute spiritual exercise. Space is limited, and the Zoom link will be provided to the first 15 people to sign up! Sign-up is HERE. Thursdays at 1:30 pm.
Panic wearing masks
Hard not to succumb to fear
Crazy times for all
Laura Sandison
The Lenten Fish Fry Dinner committee wants to say “Thank You” for your generous support of the 2020 Lenten dinners. Both your volunteering and your support of the first responders and the Zuni & neighborhood contributions for free dinners were outstanding.

Because the Covid-19 virus shut us down after only two dinners, we will be very limited on the profits that we can give to organizations that feed the hungry of Albuquerque, including our very own St. John’s UMC Food Ministry.

We would like to use your donations for first responders, the Zuni school/neighborhood, and the donations from the online Bible study to add to the limited funds we have this year to help feed those in need throughout the coming year. However, we felt that if you donated as listed above, we need to ask your permission to take this course of action. So, if you agree with this approach, you do not need to do anything. If you would like your donation returned to you, please contact either Wayne Shirley at 294-1018 or or Doris Bowen at 299-6570 or

Please respond to us by April 28, 2020 if funds need to be returned. Otherwise we will add the remaining donations to the profits to be distributed as we normally do.

You all are indeed a blessing to St. John’s UMC and our Albuquerque community!!!

While many of us are in a stay-at-home mode we can find both our emotions and faith challenged. Max Lucado has written a book "You'll Get Through This" based on the story of Joseph. He has opened up the video presentation online for no cost. I will be facilitating a Zoom discussion of this material and incorporating material from his book and study guide. If you would like to join me each week for the next 7 weeks starting Tuesday May 7th from 10 - 11 then email me for details ( If you would just like to watch the online video go to Online Bible Study to sign up for the free videos.
St John’s Food Ministry will be providing an evening meal at Hopeworks , Tuesday April 28th at Hopeworks. Chef Tim and his crew will prepare a hot, homecooked meal for over150 people, and St. John’s “Go-phers” will drive the food to their mission on 3rd Street in Albuquerque. 

The distribution of this food will be handled by staff at Hopeworks. St John’s staff will only prepare and deliver it. The Food Ministry will also provide hot, homecooked dinner for 30 people at Casa Esperanza on Thursday, April 24 and Thursday, April 30. We are able to fund this ministry through gracious gifts from Sunday school classes, individual donations from the congregation, and through a specific gift given to St John’s for use in our community and congregation for those in need. If you would like more information on this or other food ministry outreach meals contact Tim Nuzum at or Kelly Giese @ . 
As part of our outreach during this unsettling time, the Music Ministry has launched “Music From St. John’s,” a series of video performances by local musicians. This is an effort to continue to provide beautiful music to our congregation and community, and also to provide work to local musicians who have been severely affected by cancelations. New videos will appear daily for the foreseeable future, and they are being created by Shea Perry. We hope you’ll enjoy and share the videos, and also consider making a donation to the New Mexico Musicians Relief Fund. The easiest way to view the videos is to go to the St. John’s Music Ministries Facebook page. Check back daily!
In accordance with the New Mexico Department of Health order, our facility will be closed until further notice. A re-open date is to be determined! We will keep you apprised as things develop.

Your St. John's pastors and staff are still very much on the job, and are available to you during this time. Please reach out to us if we can help you in any way!
Family Promise has decided to keep the families at Church of the Good Shepherd until May. Since we are not hosting in April, Family Promise is asking for money to help off set the costs. Checks sent to St. John's can be noted "Family Promise" or you can donate online directly to Family Promise here. If you are willing to donate games, gift cards, lawn chairs, mini refrigerator, microwave, the use of an RV or rental home for housing families, please contact Jenn Shields. If you have other questions, please contact either Linn Furnish at - 505-884-6626 OR Jenn Shields at - 505-450-9978.

Each year the funds we raise during the Lenten/Easter season go to many local ministries. A sample of those includes the following: Family Promise, Grace Meal, Asbury Pie Cafe, Wesley House, McCurdy Ministries, NM Ramp Project, Mobile Food Pantry, lunch bags for the homeless, Breaking Bread Meals, Silver Horizons and many more. In these difficult times these ministries need our help more than ever. Please give generously.
Please come to pray in the labyrinth any time of day. Park in the east parking lot near the front doors of the sanctuary/narthex doors. Our prayer labyrinth is directly to the south of the front doors. It is advisable to have one person on the labyrinth at a time. Enter the prayer labyrinth with a personal prayer and then quietly and contemplatively experience what God has to share with you during this time.
Office Administrator, Debbie Brown, will be answering the phone at St. John’s every weekday from 9:00 am-2:00 pm. Please call the office if you have any concerns or pastoral care needs. Debbie will get messages to Pastor Pam and Pastor Kelly. The office number is 505-883-9717.

The St. John's staff includes a licensed mental health counselor who is available to meet virtually (using a smartphone or computer) in a secure online platform during these anxious times. If you or someone you know is struggling emotionally, counseling is available. Click here or contact Susan Brumbaugh at 505-506-6717 or for more details about session and cost information.
Congregational Care Corner

How we support you and your family in prayer during this difficult time? Prayers for health, employment, peace? Please send your prayer requests to the Prayer Team:

It is hard to get out and many people shouldn’t. Is there something you need delivered from the store? If we are able to help, we have a few volunteers who would like to serve as Go-fers for people who need something but cannot get it on their own. Please pass any requests on to Jarrod at
Contact Us
(505) 883-9717
2626 Arizona St NE | Albuquerque, NM 87110
Office Hours: Monday - Thursday, 8:30 am - 4:00 pm
Questions? Contact Shea Perry at