Volume 49
Issue 11
March 14 , 2019
Lenten Offering for Rise Against Hunger
The next time you head to the pantry for a chocolate chip cookie, think about the children in Haiti. In a country where malnutrition is the leading cause of death among children, girls and boys are eating mud cookies to stave off hunger pains. The cookies are a mixture of dirt, salt, and oil or vegetable shortening and are baked on tarps by the hot sun.

This year's Lenten Offering will help to change that. For every 29 cents we receive, we can pay for one more meal of rice, barley, and soy enriched with 23 vitamins and minerals. Please give as generously as you can, using the Rise Against Hunger envelopes in the pews.

Tyson Hall Ribbon Cutting
On Tuesday, March 5, we celebrated the ribbon cutting for Tyson Hall. While we have been utilizing this wonderful space for several months now (for worship, meetings, and community events), Tuesday we had the opportunity to join with our Chamber of Commerce and City leaders to dedicate the space and give thanks to God for all that it allows us to accomplish for Him. The ribbon was cut by Bill Brunson alongside Mayor (and longtime church member) Ashley Curry. The ribbon cutting marked yet another moment of partnership between VHUMC and the City of Vestavia Hills.
Welcome Back Rucker
Vestavia Day School welcomed back a very special person to school this week! Rucker Collier made a triumphant return to his classroom (the Lion Class) with a huge smile on his face. Rucker has been out since June for cancer treatments. We couldn't be more thrilled to have him back at school with us. His family along with VDS are thankful for all of the prayers and well wishes over the past several months.
It's Time to Rise Against Hunger
Ray Buchanan, a United Methodist minister, envisioned a world without hunger and decided to do something about it. A former Marine, he knew that accomplishing a mission required "commitment to something larger than yourself." Nearly 20 years after he founded Rise Against Hunger, more than 180 million meals have been distributed to hungry people in 65 countries.

It's our turn to make a big commitment. Over the past four years we have packed 1,121,196 meals at VHUMC. Join us as we work together to package another 300,024 meals April 28-30 during our Rise Against Hunger event. You can volunteer for a shift by visiting the link below.

Hiking to the Cross
Join the VHUMC clergy at McCallum Park (on Rosemary Lane) this Saturday, March 16, at 9:00 am, as we take a leisurely hike together. We will stop periodically to remember each of the 14 stations of the cross (the events that happened to Jesus from the Last Supper until His resurrection on Easter Sunday). Invite your friends as we enjoy a beautiful spring morning. For more information please contact Jim Frazier (jfrazier@vhumc.org / 769-0126).
Thrive Lenten Devotion
Throughout the Lenten season, our Thrive Student Ministry will be writing devotions that will be featured on our Thrive App and Facebook page every week, Monday through Friday. The theme of the season is "Cultivating and Letting Go," and each week we will focus on either attributes we need to cultivate within ourselves or behaviors we need to let go. Join us on this journey, led by our students, to take an inward look at ourselves and discern what we must cultivate and let go of in order to fully reflect the heart of Christ.

To find these devotions, and more, follow the Facebook page by clicking the link below.

A Brief Update on General Conference
General Conference has come and gone. While the news and social media have discussed it at length, the reality is that nothing changed related to how the church does ministry or our welcome that extends to all people. The changes that were made (and will take effect on January 1, 2020) have to do with various parts of the covenant among clergy.

On Wednesday, March 20, at 6:00 pm, in Tyson Hall we will briefly walk through what passed, and point out the few items that will be reviewed by Judicial Council. As we have said many times before, our goal is that our church will continue doing the ministry that God calls us to do, connecting to our community in real and relevant ways, and nothing from General Conference changes any of that.
Easter Egg Hunt
Neighbors and friends, mark your calendars to join us for the VHUMC Easter Egg Hunt! We will gather Saturday, April 13, at 10:00 am, in the Fellowship Hall. All toddlers thru 3rd grade are invited to bring a basket and camera to take pictures with the Easter Bunny and of course have fun with each other as we hunt eggs together!
Helping Our Friends in Lee County
Some of you have asked how we can help our neighbors rebuilding their lives after tornados in Lee County. Our UMC distribution center is the Trinity United Methodist Church in Opelika. They are doing well on requested supplies, but are now needing gift cards from places such as Walmart, Lowes, and Home Depot. They also need non-perishable foods to help feed the community, workers, and volunteers.

We will be collecting the gift cards in the mission's office and will get them to the church. Also, please remember that you can always donate financially to UMCOR and designate in the memo line Lee County or wherever the disaster is and 100% of your donation goes directly to relief efforts in the area you designate. Thank you for your continued support!
Chancel Choir Collaborative Concert
The Chancel Choirs of VHUMC and First United Methodist Tuscaloosa performed the second of a two concert series on Sunday, March 10, at FUMCT. The first concert event was held at VHUMC on Sunday, February 24. The concert featured the extended work Lux Aeterna (pronounce loox-A-tear-Nah) by composer Morten Lauridsen. The choirs also performed individual sets of anthems before combining for the well-known octavo "My Eternal King" by Jane Marshall. The Lauridsen was conducted by Dr. John Ratledge on February 24 and Dr. Quint Harris on March 10. There were many comments in favor of hosting more of these collaborative events from choir members as well as those in attendance. In this season of division in so many places in our world, it is nice to see people coming together in this way to praise our God.
RightNow Media Lent Feature
Take a deep dive into the journey that changed the world by following the study "An 8-Day Revolution," available for free on RightNow Media. This six session study of 10-minute videos walks you through this journey. Visit the link below to start viewing.

Be sure to register for this free resource! Text rightnow vhumc to 41411 to get your link to create a profile. Then watch 2,000+ Bible studies, talks, kids shows, and youth studies, and movies. You can also contact Suzanne Scott-Trammell (sstrammell@vhumc.org) if you have questions.

Funeral Sound and Media Volunteers Needed
Are you eager to get more involved in VHUMC while serving an important role in different worship services? Currently, there is a strong need for volunteers to operate sound during weekday and/or Saturday funerals at VHUMC. Soundboard operation is very simple, flexible, and easy to learn. We are also in need of media volunteers for Sunday worship services in the Sanctuary. Sanctuary media volunteers operate equipment in the video booth and help with the filming of special services. Media operation is also simple, and helps our worship team tremendously. Trainings will be offered periodically. If interested, or if you have any questions, please contact Peyton Chandler (pchandler@vhumc.org) or Nash Osborne (nosborne@vhumc.org).
Freedom from Addiction Breakfast
Join us on April 4 for this community-wide event held at VHUMC in Tyson Hall, at 7:00 am (program starts at 7:30). This free breakfast will feature Dr. Thomas Dooley discussing pathways to recovery and giving his personal testimony. Hosted by the Cities of Vestavia Hills, Hoover, Homewood, and Mountain Brook.
You Asked and We Listened
Many of you have requested more weekend hours in the Lighthouse! So, the Lighthouse is now open on Saturdays from 8:00 am - 4:00 pm and Sundays from 1:00 pm - 5:00 pm. If you aren't already a Lighthouse member, stop by and see all the activities we have to offer including Fuel Exercise classes, Yoga, Barre Sculpt, D1 Bootcamp, and Pickleball!

PB&J Club at VHUMC
Did you know that we have a Peanut Butter & Jelly club at VHUMC? We do and here's the scoop: In the colder weather months, Birmingham opens up Boutwell Auditorium as a warming station for those who are homeless. About a year ago, one of our members realized that making PB&J sandwiches for those at Boutwell would be a great family missions project. Since then, we have had a number of our members, from very young to very old and all in between make sandwiches and serve the homeless - even from their own home.

All you need to do is follow our VHUMC Missions and Outreach page on Facebook or email Rachael in the mission's office to tell her you would like to be on the PB&J list. As soon as we hear that the warming station is opening, we send a text to anyone interested in making sandwiches, and post it on our Facebook page. This is a great opportunity for you to serve with your children, a parent, friends, or a small group. Sandwiches should be individually wrapped and delivered to the main church office. We will get them to the warming station for you.

So, sign up today to be a part of this small ministry that serves so many! For more information, contact Rachael Hayes (rhayes@vhumc.org / 769-0143).
Get a Fidget Mat for Your Loved One
In 2018 VHUMC launched the fidget/activity mat ministry which has delivered over 500 mats for those with Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, Severe Macular Degeneration, and end-of-life issues. They give comfort to every recipient and help enhance focus and concentration for many.

This year we want you to be able to give these to your elderly loved ones and friends. If you know of someone who would benefit from a fidget/activity mat, please contact Peggy Patton (p_patton@bellsouth.net). We have a team of women who have lovingly sewn these mats and want to put them in the hands of our elderly brothers and sisters to be blessed by this ministry.
March Memory Verse
Our 1st - 5th graders are taught a different verse each month, and have the opportunity to recite the verse before or after Sunday School in the elementary office for a sweet treat and chance to win a grand prize at the end of the school year. We hope that these verses help to guide them throughout their lives. March's memory verse is: "For by grace you have been saved through faith, and this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God." Ephesians 2:8
Let's Be Good Neighbors
It is exciting to see our parking lots fill up on Sunday mornings and people parking on the streets to attend our worship and Sunday School meetings. If you find it necessary to park on the street, please be careful not to park on our neighbors' grass. We appreciate their patience with all the cars and do not want to damage their yards in the process.
Ongoing Outreach
Food Pantry
The Food Pantry needs quart-size Ziploc bags for sweets from Panera Bread. Since we no longer receive produce from Sprouts, any fresh items (oranges, apples, potatoes, carrots, etc.) you would like to donate would be great. Thank you!

Oak Mountain Missions
Oak Mountain Missions needs working appliances: washers, dryers, refrigerators, stoves, and microwaves. Please call 685-5757 for pick-up. Linens and cookware are always needed, which may be put into the three bins around the church. Thank you!
Wednesday Nights at VHUMC

  • Soul Keeping: Most Wednesdays until April 24 * 6:00 pm * Room 203
  • General Conference Update - March 20 * 6:00 pm * Tyson Hall
  • Spring Break: March 27 * No dinner or programming
  • Holy Week: April 17 * No dinner or programming
  • Music and Arts Concert: May 1 * Tyson Hall
  • March 20 - Chili, Baked Potato Bar, Salad or Fruit (Healthy Option: Chicken Salad or Chef's Salad)
  • April 3 - Tacos, Black Beans, Rice, Salad or Fruit (Healthy Option: Grilled Chicken or Chef's Salad)
  • April 10 - Scrambled Eggs, Bacon, Cheese Grits, Fresh Fruit (Healthy Option: Boiled Egg or Chef's Salad)
  • April 24 - Sesame Glazed Pork, Rice or Mac & Cheese, Steamed Vegetable Medley, Salad or Fruit (Healthy Option: Ginger Chicken or Chef's Salad)
  • May 8 - Orecchiette with Bolognese, Marinara, or Alfredo Sauce, French Bread, Salad or Fruit (Healthy Option: Baked Chicken or Chef's Salad)

Worship This Sunday

8:30 am T raditional Service
Matthew 13:3-9
"The Struggles of the Soul"
Bill Brunson

9:45 am Service of Word and Table
Matthew 13:3-9
"The Struggles of the Soul"
Butch Williams

11:00 am Traditional Service
Matthew 13:3-9
"The Struggles of the Soul"
Bill Brunson

11:00 am Contemporary Service
Matthew 13:3-9
The Struggles of the Soul"
Kipp McClurg

5:00 pm Sunday Evening Worship
The Harmony Belles
Attendance for last Sunday:  757
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