Join us on Memorial Sunday as we honor our heroes!
First Church News & Updates - May 25, 2018

We have had so much beautiful music in worship in the past few weeks. Enjoy How Great Thou Art from last Sunday.

the church office will be closed today and Monday, May 28 in honor of Memorial Day.

Enjoy this First Church News.
This week in worship...
Memorial Sunday

Memorial Sunday...May we never forget freedom isn't free.
We will share in a very meaningful remembrance of those who have paid the ultimate price for our freedom as citizens of our nation. The services will include:
  • Dr. Will Cotton will preach at the 8:30, 9:40 and 11 am worship services. Rev. Van Dickens will be the liturgist at 8:30 and 11 am. 
  • Sermon Title: Overcoming the Spirit of FearScripture: 2 Timothy 1:6-10. A note from Dr. Will Cotton about the sermon. The last two Sundays at First Church have featured the ministry of our children and youth - ringing, singing, playing instruments and sharing in ministry in a variety of ways. I am proud of our kids. At the same time, we have been praying for situations around the world and in our own state where children and youth have been the victims of violence. I truly believe that the gospel calls forth a different kind of response than the ones we see so often in the news. On this Memorial Day Weekend, a time when we honor our soldiers who have given their lives for the treasured freedoms we experience, it is a good time to look at the society we are creating and what our Christian witness needs to be. I hope you will be here and bring someone with you, especially that young person or family member of him or her that needs a fresh word of hope and peace.
  • Patriotic music by the congregation and an original piece, "Come Take a Walk with God" by Tom Lough (congregation member) sung by Mike Rosensteel at the sanctuary services and by Brian Batch at CrossRoads.
  • A litany of thanksgiving and prayers for peace.
  • A memorial folder placed on the altar with names of those remembered. 
Immediately following the 11 am worship service, we hope you will join us as our  Military and First Responder Network hosts our first wreath dedication at the flagpole near the  Garden of the Saints columbarium in the south parking lot. 

We are very grateful for our church's Military and First Responders Network for their assistance in developing this part of our worship on Memorial Day weekend. The MFRN offers community support and care for veterans and first responders along with their families.

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...
Commencement Exercises
This week many of our high schools are celebrating graduation for the class of 2018. Last Sunday we named 25 seniors, inviting our congregation to share in their joy and to offer our prayers on their behalf. We presented them a beautiful Bible that we hope they will wear out over these next few years. They are an exciting class with many leaders who are going to make their mark for Christ in the world.
Dr. Will Cotton
Dr. Will Cotton
On Monday, Jennifer Hall and I participated in the Council Oak Pre-School Graduation, complete with caps and gowns for the ones to enter kindergarten next fall. What a great ministry Joy Lewis, her staff and teachers offer to these children. It is amazing to watch how much they grow from just a few months ago in September to May. You can rightfully be pround of the kind of education our pre-school children get at COP.

There have also been a lot of new university graduates over the past few weeks as well. Rightfully, the proper term for the ceremony at graduation is commencement exercises... the procession, the recognitions, the presentation of diplomas or degrees, the speeches, and the moving of the tassel from the right to the left (high school graduation). But the more important commencement exercise is what commences afterwards (entering the work force or military, further schooling, or any number of options) as a new chapter of life begins.

I have been through four commencements personally, then two with Tina and four with our sons. Each one has a special place in my heart and mind. And I actually do remember some of the things people said there. So, congratulations to the class of 2018 and may each graduate do mighty things for the kingdom of God!

Sincerely in Christ,
Will Cotton Signature
Dr. Will Cotton
Senior Pastor
Spotlight on...MOM - Ministry of Motherhood
Ministry of Motherhood
The goal of the MOM or Ministry of Motherhood is to provide a positive atmosphere for sharing ideas, discussing the common delights and challenges of raising a family, learning through group studies, and serving the community. MOM strives to support parents by offering strength and encouragement. 

MOM is made up of First Church members and non-members. They meet on Friday mornings during the school year. 

They have done various service projects throughout the 2017-18 school year. In addition to working in the Twin Oaks Cafe for one month, the MOM group made the cute signs you see around campus that advertise for Twin Oaks. They invited the congregation to join them in a school supply drive for Salvation Army last fall. The MOM group also made journals and stress balloons for children in the STARRY program. They included their children in one of their favorite service group projects. They planted a vegetable garden at the Round Rock Community Garden for Hope Alliance. Individual MOM members can be seen volunteering in our Sunday School and Bible Buddy programs. Many are registered to volunteer at Vacation Bible School too! MOM also made a generous donation of $1500 to the general budget of First Church! It is exciting to see these young MOMs getting plugged in and becoming leaders in our church community.

Thanks to Lindsey Berggren and Mel Holland for their leadership this past year. Leaders for 2018-19 will be Bria Powell and Jordan Ferris.

Save the date for their annual Kickoff Brunch on  September 7, 2018.
Ministry Focus
Worship Arts
CrossRoads CD
Chime Camp
Children's Summer Chime Camps 
are Coming Up!
These wonderful 3-day camps are offered to all children entering 3rd-5th grades in the fall of 2018. Children learn the basics of ringing chimes from experienced teachers. 
Register your child today! 
Children's Ministry
Promotion Sunday
This Sunday is Promotion Sunday!
Sunday, May 27 is Promotion Sunday for Kindergarten-5th grade children. Children who just finished kindergarten will meet in Pod A, Room 2 at 9:40 am. The Children's Ministry team and volunteers will walk them to  the Walk of Faith Hallway in Bldg. 5-2nd floor. The children will tour the Walk of Faith classrooms and learn about our rotation system. Parents are welcome to join the tour at 10 am or you can pick up your new first grader in Bldg. 5-217 at 10:40 am. All children currently in grades 1 - 5 will move up on May 27.
Student Ministry
Congratulations to our 2018 High School Graduates
Congratulations to our 2018 High School Graduates
Last Sunday we celebrated our 2018 Graduating Seniors, many of whom are graduating at the end of this week. We recognized them in the 11 am worship service and then continued our celebration at a  luncheon. We heard from Sunday School teachers and Small Group Leaders that have a special connection with this group of kids. Our Junior Class, with the help of others did a great job of preparing and serving our Seniors and their families. We had such a great time celebrating this group of students.
Summer Youth Events
More from Student Ministries...  
Adult Ministry
Summer Bible Study
Summer Bible Study begins June 11
Join us for a six week Bible Study entitled Does It Make Sense To Be A Christian? Hear the evidence that backs up your faith and how that evidence helps you to both defend and proclaim the reason for your hope in Jesus Christ. Topics include: 
  • The book of God's words. 
  • The book of God's works. 
  • What do the gospels say about who Jesus was? 
  • Why did Jesus have to die on the cross? 
  • Was the resurrection essential? 
  • Grace.  
Orientation is Monday, June 11 with study sessions from June 18- July 30, except July 2. Register on the website or contact James Lehrmann at
More from Adult Ministries...  
  •  Love Wins - New study begins May 13, 9:40 am in Bldg. 5-136.
MIssion Focus
Mission Month
Do you have time and talents to offer but you're unsure how to get involved? 
Whether it's world travel or web development, construction or coordination, the many missions at First Church want to get you engaged! The Villages team is hosting Mission Month every Sunday in June in the common area next to Payne Cottage in between services. Each week, different active missions will have volunteers and information available to help you learn about the many awesome things our church is doing locally and internationally and providing an easy way for you to get engaged.

On deck on June 3...Military & First Responders Network, Heart to Heart Quilters, Greater Round Rock Village, Disaster Response Team, Children's Ministry, Footprints, Kairos Prison Ministry, and the Parking Posse.

Please stop by and find your passion!
Mission Luncheon
On Sunday, June 24, we will focus on our international missions, with representatives from Mission Panama, Children's Ministries, UMCOR (United Methodist Committee on Relief) and Sierra Leone. You read that right: we'll have a representative from Sierra Leone...our own Katie Meek will be here! Join us in welcoming Katie for a taco bar lunch after the 11 am service. We'll hear a little about Katie's work as missionary to Sierra Leone. Cost is $10 per person. Click here to register.
Heifer Project Total

Children's Ministry Mission closed on Sunday, May 22
A Heifer gift is the beginning of an extraordinary chain of giving. Giving an animal is like giving someone a small business, providing wool, milk, eggs and more. Animal donations can provide families a hand up, increasing access to medicine, school, food and a sustainable livelihood and self-reliance.  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.  

In January, children in Sunday School set goals with their class. Each picked an animal to purchase. All offering collected in Sunday School helped them work toward that goal. Some children even went door-to-door in their neighborhoods collecting money for this mission project. In twenty weeks, the children in kindergarten through fifth grade brought in $2,618.68! All classes reached their first goal and second goal animals. The fifth graders selected the most expensive animal, a heifer, which costs $500.

An anonymous donor from First Church gave $1000 to Children's Ministry for Heifer International, so each class got to choose new animals totaling $100. The remainder of this gift went to help reach any unmet goals.
Heifer Update
The total amount donated to Heifer in honor of Children's Ministry at First Church was
  • 9 flocks of chicks
  • 6 flocks of ducks
  • 4 honeybee hives with bees
  • 6 trios of rabbits
  • 4 schools of fish
  • 1 pig
  • 3 llamas
  • 1 goat
  • 1 heifer 
  • and $1623 given to where it is most needed. These gifts include $1490 given in the offering plate in worship designated for Heifer International. Due to an anonymous donor to Heifer International, all of these gifts have been tripled. Way to go on all your efforts! You have made a difference totaling $17,785! 
A Finance Snapshot...
Finance Update
  • Year to date Revenue: $876,144.74
  • Year to date Expenses: $884,250.69
  • 2018 Budget: $2,481,067.63
This week at First Church
Saturday, May 26

Sunday, May 27
  • 8:30, 9:40 and 11 am - Worship services
  • 11:00 am - Life Groups, Bldg. 5-124 & 222
Monday, May 28 - Church office will be closed for Memorial Day

Tuesday, May 29
  • 8:30 am - UMM Tuesday Breakfast group, Ju├írez Restaurant on South Mays
  • 9:30 am - First Church Crafters, 115 Winsted
  • 7:00 pm - France Choir rehearsal, South Suite
Wednesday, May 30
  • 6:15 am - UMM Breakfast, fellowship, & devotional, FLC/Bldg.3
Thursday, May 31
  • 9:30 am - Heart to Heart Quilters, 115 Winsted
Friday, June 1 
  • 8:30 am - Round Rock Helpers, Bldg. 4-2
  • 8:00 pm - Narcotics Anonymous-Right Stuff, Bldg. 4
Saturday, June 2

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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