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Fall Kick-Off Sunday is September 17th!
Spread the word and invite your neighbors, family, and friends!
**Reminder: Our service time will change back to 10am for the fall and spring starting Sunday, September 17th**
Second Annual Art Camp a Huge Success!
This year, for our "Let Your Light Shine" Art Camp, we had 29 kids, 3 teen helpers, and countless leaders/volunteers letting their light shine during what was an amazing week filled with loads of fun, meaning, learning, and joy! Kids had the chance to let their light shine through art, culinary art, gardening, theatre, recreation, and music & Bible. Several campers, after the first few days, were already expressing how they couldn't wait to come back next year. And some parents even testified at the end of the week to how this was their kids' favorite thing they attended all summer. If there's one thing we know for sure, it's that God is on the move at First UMC!

Thank you to all who worked so hard to make Art Camp 2017 the best one yet!
Saying Thank You & Good-bye to Asi'ayana
After a summer with us at First UMC, we had to say goodbye to Asi'ayana Russell-Jolly, our summer children's ministry intern and Art Camp director. On her last Sunday with us, we had a special service where we got to "testify to the light," testifying to all God did through First UMC and in the lives of children during the week of Art Camp.

Asi'ayana, you will be missed! Thank you for letting your light shine and for helping so many more to let their lights shine! We are better and brighter for having known you!

Asi'ayana is starting her last year of college at Kean University to continue her studies in speech pathology. We send her off with our prayers and love, grateful for her ministry among us!
Rummage Sale
First UMC's Rummage Sale will be happening soon! It will take place Saturday, September 23rd from 9am-3pm . Tell everyone you know and we hope to see you there!

Call Becky at (609) 261-4174 if...
1) You have things you'd like to donate
2) You would like to donate your time as a volunteer
3) You or someone you know would like to rent a table to sell their own things. We are renting tables for $15.
There will also be a (cash and carry) Flash Sale on Saturday, September 9th from 9am-2pm to sell some of the bigger items we are clearing out from our basement.
We are looking for people to help bring items up and price them THIS Wednesday evening and Friday morning. Contact Pastor Donald ASAP at (972) 921-9970 or email him at if you can help. Help is wanted and needed.
New Members Class
Are you new to First UMC?
Do you feel God is calling you to make First UMC your church home?

Have you been attending for awhile but just haven't made it official?  
If you answered yes to any of these questions, or even if you're just curious to learn more about the history of Methodism, our church, and what it means to be a disciple of Jesus Christ, we hope you'll consider joining us for our three-week membership class on the following Sundays before service: September 24, October 1, and October 8 from 8:45-9:45am.
Digging Deeper Bible Study Starting Up Again!
Interested in going through a book of the Bible in the context of a small group? Then join us every Monday from 10-11am as we do just that! Starts Monday, September 18th.
Hungry for More
We have one more week of our "Seeing Gray in a World of Black and White" series. So join us THIS Wed as we put a bow on this series and call it a wrap!

Then, on September 13th, we will take a break for one week, but will kick things back into gear on September 20th for another exciting series!

Fall will be here before you know it! And so will our next painting venture. Join us!
Ladies' Night Out!
This month's  Ladies' Night Out  will be at  Mastori's on Monday, September 25th . Meet in church parking lot at 5:30pm to carpool.

Contact  Debbie Stevenson  for more information. 
Responding to Hurricane Harvey
In the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey, here is what our Greater New Jersey Conference is doing about it and how you can be a part of the response for relief.

UMCOR, the United Methodist Committee on Relief, has already been hard at work and they invite you to join in their efforts.

Click here to go to UMCOR's website and find out more.
GNJ's Safe Sanctuary Training
Have you been a part of ministries in our church involving children and/or youth? Would you like to get involved in some way in the future, whether with next year's Art Camp, VBS, Sunday School, or in other ways? On Saturday, September 16th , the Greater New Jersey Conference will be hosting a Safe Sanctuaries Workshop from 9am-12 noon. We encourage anyone who desires to be involved in children/youth ministry in any way in the coming year to attend this three hour training. It will take place at the GNJ's Mission & Resource Center at 205 Jumping Brook Road in Neptune, NJ. Contact Pastor Donald at (972) 921-9970 if you would like to carpool.
Learning the Ropes
Do you have a passion for something that is not being utilized? Is there something we do as a church you'd like to be a part of or help with? If so, we want to know!

Perhaps it's jotting down the Joys & Concerns voiced every week. Perhaps it's leading a small group. Perhaps it's doing some form of outreach and evangelism. It could be beautifying the outside of the church. It could be helping with blurbs in the monthly newsletter or making posts to our social media pages. Whatever it is, we want to not only give you the opportunity to serve, but to "learn the ropes," so you feel confident in helping with what you're interested in doing.

Join us Sunday, October 1st, from 11:15-12:15 after service when we invite anyone to stay to "learn some ropes." Please let Pastor Donald know if you are interested, for wherever the interest lies, that will determine the shape and length of the "learning the rope" session and determine if multiple sessions are needed with different emphases.
Register for the Walk for Freedom Today!
Human Trafficking is the fastest growing crime worldwide, and occurs in every city in the USA, including our own backyard. Its victims (average age is 11-14 years) are forced into a nightmarish existence that is beyond comprehension.

Please help us to raise awareness to stop this horrendous crime by participating in  A21's global Walk for Freedom , being hosted in Eastampton, NJ, sponsored by "In His Image Justice Coalition." The walk will be held on  October 14, 2017, at 9am . Distance is 2-3 miles and you can register to walk by clicking here.

For more information or questions, email
September Reflections from Pastor Donald
Why might some be calling Pastor Donald the "Papa John Preacher" soon? Find out by clicking here , and see what delivering pizza has to do with surrendering in humble and sometimes uncertain obedience.
Upcoming Meetings & Important Dates for September
  • Nominations & Leadership Development Meeting: Tuesday, Sep 12 at 6:30pm
  • Newborns in Need: Friday, September 15 at 1pm
  • Finance Committee MeetingTuesday, September 19 at 6:30pm
  • Administrative Council MeetingTuesday, September 19 at 7:00pm
  • SPRC Meeting: To be determined soon, but plan for a September meeting.
  • Charge Conference Paperwork Due Date: Sunday, September 24
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