Worship this Sunday at 10:00 a.m.

Like A River

Dear Friends,

For seven years, our family lived in Trenton, a downriver community, defined by the Detroit River. For four years I was superintendent of schools in Manchester, through which the River Raisin Runs. Increasingly, I spend time in Cadillac; the Big Manistee and Pine River are both within a half hour of downtown. I seem to be drawn to rivers. Rivers have the power to exhilarate and excite; they also have the capacity to calm and center me.

Rivers run through scripture. In the beginning, in Eden, there is a river (Genesis 2:4b-10a). In the end, in New Jerusalem, there is a river (Revelation 22:1-5). And in between, here and now, through us all, there is a river of living water flowing (John 7:37-39).

In our Birmingham First Sanctuary worship this Sunday, August 20 we will look at the rivers that run through scripture and consider what rivers teach us about the presence of God in our lives. How might we live as those who have rivers of living water flowing through us?


Worship on Sunday at 10:00 a.m. in-person or online via our website by clicking the buttons below. Sunday School and Nursery Care are available. After worship, join us for Fellowship Hour on the Plaza.


I look forward to worshipping with you,

The Rev. Shawn Lewis-Lakin

Associate Pastor

Click a button below to watch worship online Sunday at 10:00 a.m.

Website - Watch Live
Facebook - Watch Live

Holy Baptism Sunday, August 20

We celebrate the Sacrament of Baptism when we are initiated into Christ's holy Church. Through baptism we are incorporated into God's mighty acts of salvation and given new birth through water and the Spirit. This Sunday we will celebrate God's gift, offered to us without price.

Our prayers of joy are shared with Justin and Emily McGetrick as we celebrate the baptism of their son, Jameson Justin.

Our Church Family

Altar Flowers

The Altar Flowers are dedicated to the glory of God and in loving memory of Donald Hufford and David Merrifield by the Hufford and Merrifield families. 

Mission Candle

The Mission Candle is dedicated to the glory of God and in celebration of the 60th wedding anniversary of Judy and Jim Turner.



Our Prayers of Sympathy and Support are shared with Rachel Taylor and Maureen Crowe on the death of Maureen's brother, George Crowe on July 20.  


Our Prayers of Sympathy and Support are shared with the family on the death of former member Jane Legg on August 7.

Submit a Prayer Request

Rev. Boayue on Vacation

The Rev. Dr. Charles Boayue, Jr., our senior pastor, will be on vacation through August 30. He will travel to Liberia during this time. While in Liberia, he will visit and negotiate land to be purchased for the school he will build there. While he is away, please reach out to Rev. Susie Hierholzer with administrative questions. Personnel issues should be addressed to either Chuck Truza, chairperson of the Staff Parish Relations Committee, or Frank Turco, Director of Finance and Operations by phone at 248-646-1200 ext. 3133, or by email at [email protected].


Let us hold Charles and his family in prayer during this time. 

Berkley First Worship

They Belong - The Book of Jonah

This Sunday, August 20, Jeremiah Wade-Olson will preach the sermon, They Belong based on The Book of Jonah.


Wrapping up our series on belonging, this week Jeremiah Wade Olson focuses on the fact that “they” belong here as well. Drawing from the Old Testament story of Jonah and his anger at God’s compassion, we will ask: Who are we not reaching out to because we don't think they deserve salvation?


Worship on Sunday at 10:00 a.m. at Berkley First in-person or online via livestream, FacebookYouTube, or BerkleyFirst.org

Watch Worship from Sunday, August 13

Watch a recording of worship from last Sunday, August 13 by clicking on one of the buttons below.

Birmingham First Worship Recording
Berkley First Worship Recording

CLC Welcome Desk - Volunteers Needed

The Christian Life Center (CLC) is undergoing renovation to prepare for the next chapter. The new flooring is being installed. We look forward to reopening in the Fall but need your help! In order to launch this exciting new chapter of the CLC (including Pickleball), and to ensure it’s success, we are seeking Welcome Desk Volunteers to provide a warm welcome to visitors of the CLC.


Please submit your interest by scanning the QR code. Submitting interest does not mean you're signing up but rather interested in what this may look like and to seek more information. We are hosting two informational meetings on Wednesday, August 30 from 10:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m., and Wednesday, August 30 from 7:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. in the lobby of the CLC. 


Come and hear more about this exciting opportunity to connect our church with the community! RSVP for one of these meetings, or if you cannot attend but are interested, submit your name to this form and note when you are available. Contact Rev. Sarah Alexander for more information, [email protected].

Sign Up

Coming in September to the CLC

Yoga N Beyond

Tuesdays at 7:00 p.m. in the CLC

More Information

Mat Pilates

Tuesdays & Thursdays at 10:30 a.m. in the CLC

More Information

Fall Confirmation

Deadline to register is Friday, September 1


Confirmation is an important part of a young person’s faith journey. In confirmation class students will be challenged to think about their faith, to responsibly live their faith in the world, and to make decisions about their own spiritual formation. This class is for students entering 8th grade or higher.


Confirmation classes will be offered in two sessions; one at the Birmingham First campus and one at the Berkley First campus. Pastor Zack will be teaching the class at the Berkley Campus, and Rev. Susie at the Birmingham Campus.


Confirmation Sunday will be on November 19 at 11:00 a.m.


For more information about confirmation click the button below, or contact Rev. Susie Hierholzer, [email protected] or call 248-646-1200 ext. 3162.

Register Now

Volunteer Record & Registration Update

Birmingham and Berkley First has a new policy for working with children, youth and vulnerable persons. This new policy asks for volunteers to complete an application, background check release, and provide the names and email addresses of two references who will be asked to fill out a form recommending you as a volunteer. Any volunteer who has supervising authority over or assisting in the leadership of children, youth and vulnerable persons are being asked to complete this process as soon as possible to bring us into compliance with the new policy. Once the application process has been completed, only the background check release will need to be repeated every three years.


You can complete the online volunteer application by scanning the QR code. Thank you for supporting the safety of the children, youth, and vulnerable adults of our church by participating in this process.


For questions, please contact Rev. Susie Hierholzer, Pastor of Discipleship, by email [email protected] or by phone 248-646-1200 ext. 3162.


Please note: Only rummage sale volunteers who are going to be supervising or have authority over children, youth or vulnerable adults need to be certified through the church’s screening process. If your role doesn’t include these duties, you do not need to be screened for this event. 


Programs and ministries of the church will be reviewed for the level of authority over children, youth or vulnerable adults at the time of scheduling to see if certification will be required. 


Volunteer Registration

Voice of Hope

Voice of Hope is a weekly devotional available to you by phone 24 hours a day. Starting on Sunday, August 27 and lasting for a week, the Voice of Hope message will be recorded by Greg LaBrake titled, The Friend Above All Friends. To listen, call 248-646-6407 and press 2 when your call is answered by our automated system.


Faith Builders

Are you interested in growing in your faith? 

Faith Builders is the perfect Adult Sunday School for you! This group embraces differences and allows people to share their beliefs in a non-threatening environment. The class meets Sundays from 11:00 a.m.-12:30 p.m. beginning on September 10 and going through May 28.

Meetings are in-person or via Zoom! For In-person: Meet at Birmingham First in Ward Library on Sundays. For Zoom: Contact Karen Carter at 248-254-2354 or email [email protected].

Fantasy Football for Missions

It’s time again for Fantasy Football for Missions!  Live Draft in Fellowship Hall is Sunday, August 27 at 7:00 p.m. A $30 donation is ALL that is required. For more details, click the button below.

Be sure to email Mark Adams at [email protected] today to sign up.

More Information

Monthly Mission - September

Monthly Mission - September

Micah 6 Community will be helping our neighbors on Murphy Street with a variety of outdoor clean up projects including painting, gardening, home repair, light concrete work, sidewalk clearing, trash removal during their BLOCK BLITZ on Saturday, September 9 from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Fall Rummage Sale - Get Involved!

Use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace.-1 Peter 4:10

UMW Fall Rummage Sale is open to the public Wednesday, October 11 and Thursday, October 12. 


This church-wide effort is about mission giving on many levels. Get involved! Rummage Sale Week is a fun way to meet people and get connected at Birmingham First while helping others in need.

To volunteer the week of October 8-13, call or text Jane Carvell at 248-379-2662 or email [email protected].

Home Produce Table

Hunger Ministry will be hosting a Home Produce Table every Sunday through Sunday, September 24. Visit their table in Fellowship Hall. Bring any extra items from your garden and drop them off at the Home Produce Table before worship then purchase items brought by others after service to benefit the Hunger Ministry. 

We need volunteers! Click the button below to sign up or contact Bob Feldmaier, [email protected].


Click here to sign up!

Fair Trade Equal Exchange

Get your Fair Trade chocolate and coffee on the second Sunday of every month beginning on Sunday, September 10 in Fellowship Hall following the Worship Service. Fair trade organizations make sure the farmer gets a fair fraction of the price, and often helps them improve their farming and business methods. 

Sunday Social

On Sunday, August 27 meet in Thomas Parlor from 11:15 a.m. – 12:45 p.m. for a wonderful picnic lunch prepared by Chef Greg Ervin. Come for fellowship with your senior friends. Cost of the lunch will be $15.00. To reserve your place at the table, please make your reservation by Tuesday, August 22 with Mary Feldmaier, Director of Membership and Connecting Ministries, [email protected], 248-646-1200 ext. 3142. Future Sunday Socials will be held on September 24, October 29 & November 26.

Discover First

Join our clergy and staff for Discover First, a one session class that will provide you with the knowledge, resources and relationships needed to take your next steps at Birmingham and Berkley First. The session will be relaxed and informative as you learn more about The United Methodist Church and Birmingham and Berkley First. The session ends with an opportunity to officially become a member. You may attend Discover First at either church campus. Our next Discover Firsts will be held:

· Tuesday, August 22, 6:00 p.m. Thomas Parlor, Birmingham Campus

· Wednesday, August 23, 6:00 p.m. Berkley Campus

We would love to be your church family! There is a place for you at Birmingham and Berkley First! For more information or to RSVP, contact Mary Feldmaier, Director of Membership and Connecting Ministries, [email protected], 248-646-1200 ext. 3142.

Crop Walk - Join the Team!

We are less than 60 days away from the 2023 Crop Hunger Walk! Start your stretching and practice stepping!

On Sunday, September 24 at 1:00 p.m. the walk will begin at Birmingham First and end with an Ice Cream Social at First Presbyterian Church.

You can begin your fundraising efforts now by joining the Birmingham First Team online! Click the button below to register! For more information, contact John King at [email protected].

Join the Team

College Care Packages

We will be sending our church’s college students a care package during the month of September. Please send your student’s college address to Chris Schulte by September 4 at [email protected].

If you would like to be part of this ministry, contact Sue Smith by email at [email protected].

Shine a light on sickle cell disease by donating blood on Tuesday, September 19 between 12:30 p.m. and 7:00 p.m.

All attempting donors will receive a limited-edition sickle cell awareness t-shirt as a thank you, while supplies last.

Thank you to those who have donated this year. Our May drive which was 34 pints collected and the July drive which was 33 pints collected.

Click the button below to reserve your time to give!

RSVP to Donate

Live Music @BerkleyFirst

You’re invited to Berkley First on Thursday, August 24 at 7:00 p.m. for live outdoor music, snacks and s’mores. Bring a lawn chair, or a blanket to sit on.


The fun takes place at 2820 12 Mile Road, Berkley. For questions, contact Berkley Campus Director of Worship, Brian White by email at [email protected].

Cuba Mission Trip - Thank You

Our recent mission trip to Cuba was very successful in helping our sister congregation in Manzanillo with important supplies while building relationships with the pastors. We also met with the Bishop of the Methodist Church in Cuba and the Rector of the Methodist Seminary.  


Many thanks to the following groups for their generosity:


· Missions Committee and United Women in Faith for donating funds toward the renovation of the Sunday School building in Manzanillo;


· Hunger Ministry for donating funds for the lunches that feed the children of their community;


· Congregation members who helped purchase a car for the pastors and donated soap and detergent for the people of Manzanillo;


And to all the members of Birmingham and Berkley First who lift up in prayer our sisters and brothers of the Methodist Church in Cuba. Please continue to pray that the lives of the Cuban people would be transformed by the love of God and the message of the gospel.


Ann Littleton

Bridget Schipper

Rev. Susie Hierholzer

Rev. Zack Dunlap


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