Worship this Sunday at 9:30 a.m. and 11:00 a.m.

Making Room: Be A Neighbor | Mark 12:28-31

Big Music Sunday: A Festival of Carols

Dear Friends,

Sunday, December 3 is the first Sunday of Advent. It is the official beginning of the Season of Waiting – waiting on the birth of the Messiah, Jesus Christ, the Savior of the World.

This Advent, our sermon series will be about “Making Room” – since Jesus came that all may have eternal life. Each Sunday, we will examine a different aspect of what it takes to make room for all who have sinned and come short of the glory of God. To celebrate this miraculous story of salvation, worship this week will focus on sacred music. We call this Big Music Sunday! Our amazing Chancel Choir and orchestra will present, A Festival of Carols, to soothe the soul and calm the storms of life. A homily on the theme, “Making Room: Be A Neighbor,” will be taken from Mark 12:28-31. Come and join us to reflect upon the meaning and message of Advent.

What does it mean to make room for our neighbor? What does it mean to be a neighbor? Who is our neighbor? And how does the coming of the Messiah make room for others? Worship is at 9:30 a.m. and 11:00 a.m. in-person with livestreaming at 9:30 a.m. Nursery Care is available at the 9:30 a.m. and 11:00 a.m. service.

I look forward to worshiping with you!

The Rev. Dr. Charles S. G. Boayue, Jr.

Senior Pastor

Click a button below to watch worship online Sunday at 9:30 a.m.

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Our Church Family

Altar Flowers

The Altar Flowers are dedicated to the glory of God and in celebration with the family of Lindsey and James Lightbody on the birth of their daughter Lexington (Lexi) Isabelle on November 9. Proud grandparents are Deb and Mike Roy.



Prayers of celebration and joy are shared with the family of Dave and Lauren Moore on the birth of their daughter, Vivian Antoinette, born on October 31. Proud grandparents are Glenn and Jeanne Moore.


Our prayers of sympathy and concern are shared with the family and friends of Georgine Tan on her death on November 23.

On December 1 at 1:00 p.m. the Celebration of Life Service for Patty Glass will be livestreamed. If you would like a livestream link, please email Kim Fitzgerald, office@fumcbirmingham.org.

Submit a Prayer Request

Family Worship

On Sunday, December 3, children will worship with their families. There will be a Children’s Moment in the worship service that all children will be invited to take part in.

First Nurses

On Sunday, December 3, First Nurses will provide blood pressure checks during Coffee Hour between services in Fellowship Hall. All are welcome.

2024 Generosity Campaign Status Report

Thank you for your time, effort, and monetary donations this year. However, due to a decrease in overall giving, our total expenses exceed our funds, resulting in a year-end deficit of $400K. 


We are asking for your financial commitment to support the programs that you want to see at Birmingham First. This cannot happen without you. In 2023, Birmingham First has been blessed with tremendous church growth. Our online worship services have been incredibly successful, attracting even more attendees than last year! And, more events, classes, and groups have formed, where seekers have found faith-based friendships at a time when they need it the most. Accommodating the amazing developments like this wouldn’t be possible without your support. 


The current pledged income for 2024 is $1.7M with projected expenses totaling $2.9M. To balance the budget in 2024, we may be forced to look at 25% decreases across the board which would mean cuts in programming and staff support. It does not have to be this way. You can make a difference. 


Prayerfully consider your response to the needs of your church community. With your participation, we can end the year strong. The first step is to complete your Estimate of Giving (EOG) Card for 2024. The next step is to be sure your electronic recurring payments for 2023 have been accurate, and that your 2024 withdraw amounts have been adjusted to reflect what you want to give. You can do this by clicking the button below.


In the course of year-end tax planning, you may find yourself considering special one-time donations. There is a growing trend among donors to make online contributions to their favorite organizations during the final week of the year. As you contemplate year-end gifts, please keep Birmingham First in mind. We are deeply grateful for any and all donations received this year. 

Giving & Recurring Payments
Download an Estimate of GIving Card

Poinsettia Orders

Your poinsettia orders are appreciated and will help us decorate our worship spaces for Advent and Christmas. The cost is $24.00. Orders must be received by December 13. The poinsettia tree will be displayed in the Sanctuary beginning Sunday, December 17. A listing of poinsettia donations will also be available that day. For questions, please contact Kim Fitzgerald at office@fumcbirmingham.org.

Order Your Poinsettia

Blood Drive

In this season of giving, consider making a commitment to donate blood at our upcoming Blood Drive on Monday, December 11 from 12:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.

Versiti is our service provider. This organization provides immediate blood supplies to our local hospitals here in Oakland County Michigan. Click the button below to schedule your time to give.

Schedule Your Time To Give

Upcoming Events

Sunday, December 3

A Festival of Carols with choir and orchestra at 9:30 a.m. and 11:00 a.m. The familiar sounds of Christmas brilliantly come to life as the Chancel Choir leads us into Advent with dazzling and inspirational arrangements of Christmas Carols.

Sunday, December 10

The Heralds of Christmas at 3:00 p.m. The full breadth of the music ministry is on display at this annual concert featuring all of our choirs. From the voices of our 3-year-old Cherub Choir to our Chancel Choir, from the sounds of bells to the mighty organ, this concert is guaranteed to leave your heart filled with the joy of Christmas.

Bethlehem Marketplace at 4:00 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. Children and families will be able to experience the bustling Bethlehem Marketplace and discover what life was like when Jesus was born.

Friday, December 15

An Unsilent Night: A Benefit Concert for Cass Community Social Services at 7:00 p.m. Experience a night that is anything but silent as Alvin Waddles leads a concert featuring some of Detroit's legendary musicians to benefit the outstanding work of Cass Community Social Services.

Donate to Cass Community Social Services

Monday, December 18

A Service of Hope at 7:00 p.m. In the midst of the joy and hustle-and-bustle of the Christmas season, this reflective service carves out a bit of time to acknowledge and process those things that weigh heavy on our hearts and lead us to experience the quiet hope that entered our world in Bethlehem.

Sunday, December 24

Christmas Eve Traditional Worship in the Sanctuary at 2:00 p.m., 7:00 p.m., 9:00 p.m. and 11:00 p.m. We are making room for you this Christmas just as Jesus made room in God’s kingdom for us. This story of Christ’s birth will encourage us all to widen our borders and increase our sense of community—and make room for others.

Sunday, December 24

Children and Family Worship with a Christmas Pageant at 4:00 p.m. in the Sanctuary. Witness this retelling of the Birth of Jesus Christ as told by our youngest members and their friends.

This Advent study explores the warmth of welcome at Christmas following interactions with the Holy Family, the shepherds and the Magi. Sermons at both campuses will be based on this book. Rev. Susie will be leading a discussion group at the Birmingham campus on Sundays at 11:00 a.m. on December 3, 10 & 17. Registration is not necessary. Come for 1 week or come every week. Books are available in the main office.

Copies of Heaven and Earth will be available in the Circuit Rider Bookstore!

Join Pastor Shawn for this virtual Advent Study on Wednesdays. Together we are reading and discussing Heaven and Earth, Advent and the Incarnation by Author Will Willimon.

Sign up for the Zoom Link

Berkley First Worship

Making Room: Be A Neighbor

Mark 12:31

Lighting the Candle of Hope

“We have so much time and so little to do! Strike that; reverse it.” This classic Willy Wonka quote feels all too real in this season of rushing from one meal, one purchase, one activity to the next. There’s not enough time for anything on our to-do list; how could we possibly find time to actually be good neighbors? This Sunday, we’ll discuss the need to make room in our hearts for Christ and for one another – and we will make physical room for you to invite family, friends, and neighbors by adding a second service. Worship with Berkley First at 10:00 a.m. or 11:20 a.m. the next three Sundays of December.


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

RSVP for Dinner by December 1

The Church Annual Conference will be on Monday, December 4. You are invited to connect with one another before the Conference and share a delicious meal prepared by Chef Hollie. The gathering begins at 5:30 p.m. in Fellowship Hall with dinner at 6:00 p.m. To RSVP for dinner click the button below. The Conference will begin in the Sanctuary at 7:00 p.m. To attend via Zoom, email Kim Fitzgerald, office@fumcbirmingham.org.

RSVP for Dinner

Connect and Serve

Hunger Ministry is sponsoring The Cookie Walk in Fellowship Hall on Sunday, December 10 following both worship services. This will be a great time to select a variety of different kinds of cookies for your enjoyment, or to share with others!

The proceeds go to support local agencies providing hunger relief in our community. We need lots of cookies and goodies for this event! Please click the button below to sign up to bake cookies and/or to help work at the Cookie Walk!

Sign Up!

Volunteer your talents during Angel Tree Preparation Days from December 4-December 8.

To sign up to sort and wrap gifts, click the button below. For more information, contact Liz Rito by email at ejrito@gmail.com or call 586-703-6495.

Sign up!

Church & Society Ministry is sponsoring an all-church Christmas Wish List fulfillment drive as part of our ongoing support of the Pontiac-based nonprofit Multicultural Family Center (the Center). They have provided us with a Christmas Wish List that they are hoping Birmingham and Berkley First can fulfill. Our goal is to provide the Center with at least one of each item on the Christmas Wish List. You can find out more information by clicking the button below.


More Information

Employment Opportunities

Children and Family Ministries is seeking a Childcare Coordinator and Childcare Workers. For full job descriptions click the button below. For questions, contact Director of Children and Family Ministries, Kim Bowyer by email at kbowyer@fumcbirmingham.org.

Job Postings

Merry Mates

Please join Merry Mates Friday, December 15 for dinner, fellowship and a Christmas celebration. 

Merry Mates is a social group for singles and couples in their 60's-90's.  We will gather at 5 p.m., eat at 5:30, and enjoy a Sing-along led by Deanna Ralston. Merry Maters then have the option of attending a Benefit Concert for Cass Community Social Services which begins at 7:00 p.m. The cost is $20 per person payable upon arrival. For a reservation call Sharon or Bob Pierce at 248-364-4438 by Sunday evening, December 10.

Technology Volunteers Needed

Would you like to learn more about the technology side of Birmingham First? We are looking for volunteers who are willing to be trained to run our weekly worship and special event livestreaming.


For more information, please contact Matt Alexander by email at malexander@fumcbirmingham.org.

Calendar Scheduling & Facility Use Requests

To reserve a date on the church calendar, and also to reserve a space in the buildings of Birmingham First and Berkley First including the Christian Life Center, parking lots, or outdoor areas, or to reserve a table in Fellowship Hall, please fill out a Facility Use Form. This form should also be used to schedule any off-site events if you would like them placed on the church calendar. For the online form click the button below. For a paper form, or for more information, please contact Kate Wilcox with any questions, kwilcox@fumcbirmingham.org.

Calendar Scheduling & Facility Use Form

Promotion Requests

If you would like to promote your Birmingham and Berkley First event or effort in Steeple Notes, our online communications, or in the bulletin announcements, please fill out an online promotions request form by clicking the link below. For questions, please email Adrienne Trupiano, atrupiano@fumcbirmingham.org.

Children and Family Ministries

On Sunday, December 10, Children and Family Ministries is excited to present a family-friendly Bethlehem Marketplace event from 4:00 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. following the Herald's of Christmas Concert. To make this event successful we are asking for volunteers to prayerfully consider helping us host a marketplace shop, play a character role and help with set-up and take down. To sign up, please contact Kim Bowyer at kbowyer@fumcbirmingham.org.

The 4:00 p.m. Family Christmas Eve Service needs children and adult caregiver volunteers to retell the story of Jesus’ birth. Children in Pre-K through 5th grade will have small speaking parts. Musicians are also needed to perform Christmas songs on their own instruments. We will have a mandatory rehearsal on Saturday, December 23 at 9:30 a.m. For more information or to sign up, go to our website by clicking the button below.

Sign Up

Rolls of wrapping paper and bags of bows are needed for the Cass Gift Wrap Kits mission project! Children & Family Ministries will be collecting donations through December 10. Donation boxes wrapped in Christmas paper are around the church to collect donations in the following locations: outside the CFM office, (under the table) and near the Main Entry door. 

Christian Life Center


Sign up for Ladder Leagues!

Sign up now!

New CLC Class

Women+Weights with Instructor Caryn Ciagne


Women+Weights is offered on Tuesdays from 6:45 p.m. to 7:45 p.m. in the South Studio in the Christian Life Center (CLC).  Let’s get stronger together! Enjoy the benefits of resistance/strength training complete with targeted stretches via a safe, mindful approach. Benefits include preserving bone density, improving strength, balance and joint stability. An added bonus is a boost in metabolism and mindset!

Click the button below for more information.


Watch Worship from Sunday, November 26

Watch a recording of worship from last Sunday by clicking one of the buttons below.

Birmingham First Worship Recording
Berkley First Worship Recording

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