Volume 48
Issue 18
May 3, 2018
              
Vestavia Hills Farmers Market
The VHUMC Farmer's Market starts next Wednesday, May 9, and this year we have a new time and new location! The market will be open from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm every Wednesday through August 8 and will be located right off of Highway 31 in Scouts Square. Mark your calendars and come see the seasonal goodies from local producers. See you next week!
Greeters Come in Small Packages
You may have noticed we have a new crew of greeters wearing blue name tags at every entrance to our church. A couple of weeks ago, Meredith Gay mentioned her kids' (Hollon, Ava Scott, and Brooks) reaction when they saw her new name tag. "My kids saw my new blue name tag and said 'where's ours? We greet!'" And they do, opening the Tyson Hall doors with beautiful smiles for all who enter! So, you'll notice all of our greeters wearing a blue name tag, young and not-as-young-as-we-once-were, welcoming with open arms and smiling faces, especially the children, who are such a vital part of our church! This enthusiastic approach to ministry is a wonderful example of how we are all capable of radical hospitality!
Sunday Evening Worship
Sherry Harris and Butch Williams will be team preaching in Rutland Memorial Chapel this Sunday at 5:00 pm on Mark 15:22-39. Come as you are, sing some of the old, great hymns, and enjoy an evening of warm fellowship. On May 13, Butch Williams will be preaching. Please note that June 3 is Annual Conference, so we'll not be having Sunday Evening Worship that night.
Construction Update
We have now received $273,950 in pledges toward the $300,000 to fund the wish list of Sanctuary renovations! This week the Building Committee committed those funds to all but two of our wish list items. The Sanctuary and Narthex will really improve with new outer doors, new stage lighting, new up-lighting, a new organ screen across the front, a retractable video screen, paint to lighten the wood band around the room, and new hardwood stairs up to the altar. The group decided to not paint the brick in the front corners of the room from a design perspective and to not purchase a video projector from a cost perspective. The projector could be easily added later. We are eagerly looking forward to enjoying these improvements in the Sanctuary and Narthex.

Please see our weekly construction updates in the Growing Pains article below.
What an Exciting Time in Our Church
With the success of the NEXT Campaign, we have just been through the largest fund-raising effort in this church's long history. It is nice to see the construction going and it will be wonderful once the changes are complete. Thanks to all who contributed their money, talents, and prayers to this very worthy cause!

Your Finance Committee takes the task of being a good steward of our money very seriously. It has been a pleasure to see this group work toward the best interest of our overall church. We meet at least monthly on a formal basis and usually more often when needed. We have a diverse group of both lay members and clergy who work to ensure that our funds are used to the best of their ability for both our church and congregation as a whole.

Currently, we are starting the process of drafting the overall church budget for our next fiscal year (July-June). One item that I feel is important to bring to your attention is that both our number of pledges and overall pledge dollars for 2018 are down from the 2017 amounts. Because we strive to remain a debt-free church and keep the church's finances in good standing, these lower stewardship numbers mean that during our upcoming budget discussions we may have to cut back in some areas. Rest assured this is not what we want and the board and clergy are working very hard to find efficiencies where we can. It is possible that some members have confused their NEXT pledge with their annual tithe. If you intended to but are not sure if you turned in a 2018 pledge card, please check with John Sweeny (jsweeny@vhumc.org / 769-0101).

In addition to Gary, Natalie, and John, you can contact me at any time if you have questions or concerns about our finances (william@bridgeworthfinancial.com).

Thanks again for all your generous donations. William Hocutt, Finance Committee Chairman
Help Protect Our Playground
We just purchased about $7,000 of new playground equipment that replaced items that were broken by older children. Our large playground is only designed for children in 5th grade and younger. Some of the items are only for 5-year-olds and younger. When an older student plays on them, they break. Parents, please help us by making your children aware of who can and can't play on the playground. For everyone, "if you see something, say something." If you see an older child on the playground equipment, please ask them to stop. If they don't, find a staff member. And remember, children are never allowed on the playground without adult supervision. We are excited to have such a wonderful place for our children. Please help us keep it that way.
Vacation Bible Camp
Calling all campers! Vacation Bible Camp is coming up on June 11-15 and this year our theme is Rolling River Rampage. We will be experiencing the ride of a lifetime with God! Children grade 4k (by September 1st) through 5th grade are invited to register for this fun filled week of music, exciting science, creative crafts, fun recreation, and memorable Bible stories. Join us as we discover that God is always with them as they ride the rapids of amazing grace!

We are also looking for group leaders for 5k through 5th grade, as well as helpers in elementary crafts. If you are interested in volunteering, please contact Jamie Meeks (jmeeks@vhumc.org) or Anne Strozier (astrozier@vhumc.org). If your 6th - 12th grader would like to volunteer as a student helper please contact Kathryn Groat (kgroatmom@gmail.com) before May 25.

Bundles of Hope Diaper Drive
This year, VHUMC will host another diaper drive in honor and in memory of all mothers in the month of May. We will partner with Bundles of Hope and collect diapers of all sizes from Sunday, May 6, through May 20. Please bring your package of new diapers to one of the collection bins near the church office and chapel. For questions, please contact Rachael Hayes (rhayes@vhumc.org).
Jesus Trail Tour Information Meeting
VHUMC is headed back to the Holy Land on April 2-10, 2019, and will be hike the Jesus Trail in Israel. If you are interested in going he will have an informational meeting in room 207, on Wednesday, May 16, at 6:00 pm. For more information contact Jim Frazier (jfrazier@vhumc.org / 769-0126).

May Hilltoppers Meeting
Our next meeting is Tuesday, May 15, at 10:30 am, in the Fellowship Hall. The Celebration Singers will join us for our program. For information or to make a lunch reservation ($6.00) call Harriette Woodring (822-9318) or Margaret Flowers (mflowers@vhumc.org / 769-0112) no later than 11:00 am on Friday, March 16. Please note the price and, if possible, have correct change or an extra dollar bill.

Vestavia Hilltoppers is a VHUMC-sponsored organization for persons of retirement age, which meets each month for lunch and a program. They also sponsor trips and other activities that are publicized at meetings. Guests and new members are welcome.
May Memory Verse
Our 1st - 5th graders learn 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! Children also get to put their name in a basket for a drawing at our End of the Year Awards Assembly. May's memory verse is, "Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ so that your sins may be forgiven; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit." - Acts 2:38

Our end of the year awards assembly will be Sunday, June 3, from 9:45-10:45 in the Chapel. We will choose names out of our basket and give a bungee swing to one boy and one girl!
Ministry with the Poor
As part of our conference's priority of ministry with the poor, we have partnered with Quad W to provide missional internship experiences for young people throughout our conference. Students in Birmingham will work at East Lake UMC and Restoration mission. In Anniston, they will work with Community Enabler and New Life UMC. The students will live in intentional community at both sites.

We are helping people connect with the interns by taking them dinner and joining them for a meal one night. They will be living in a house that Restoration owns right across the street from Restoration UMC. Sign up through the link if you are interested in helping.

Growing Pains: Renovating for Our Future
Last week we successfully placed our new chiller for the Adult Education Building. With that, all the parts are now here and we just have to connect everything in that building. Newly chilled AC should start next week. All mid-week meetings from 6 am to 3 pm are still relocated to other rooms. Be sure and check the room lists as you enter the building. Tyson Hall is now painted and the new light "clouds" will begin to be installed soon.

Work to improve the Sanctuary/Narthex area will start on Monday and you can expect some construction activity in that area the next few months. We plan to have Sunday worship in the Sanctuary as many weeks as possible through the summer.

The Contemporary Service will continue worshiping in the Fellowship Hall until Tyson Hall renovations are complete. Remember that shorts and short-sleeves are perfectly welcome on Sunday mornings. We want you here and we want you to be comfortable!
Ongoing Outreach
Food Pantry
For the second year in a row, VHHS Relay for Life teams donated their canned goods to VHUMC's food pantry. Jay Lovell and Courtney Westhoven helped coordinate the efforts this year as Chairmen. The cans were used in lieu of sand in the illumination bags. This year's Relay for Life raised over $253,500. What an amazing event and what an amazing way to give back to so many with the donation to the food pantry. Thank you!

The Food Pantry needs tote bags for family portions of fruits and veggies. The farmers market opens again in May so we need a large supply of bags. We are also still looking for two volunteers with pick-up trucks who are available one Monday a month for help with our food bank order. If you are able, please contact Barbara Porter (bobarb@bellsouth.net).

Oak Mountain Mission
Oak Mountain Mission needs furniture to be given to families who have lost everything due to fires, floods or displacement. Call Brenda for pick-up 685-5757.
Wednesday Night Menu
  • May 9 - Salad, chicken cacciatore OR shrimp creole, rice, broccoli, bread pudding. Kids: pizza
  • May 16 - Hamburger OR hot dogs, french fries, toppings, ice cream
Worship This Sunday 

8:30 am         Traditional Service
Mark 15:22-39
"I Didn't Know"
Bill Brunson

9:45 am         Service of Word and Table
Mark 15:22-39
"I Didn't Know"
Butch Williams and Sherry Harris

11:00 am         Traditional Service
Senior Sunday

11:00 am         Contemporary Service
John 15:9-17
"All We Need Is Love"
Sherry Harris

5:00 pm         Sunday Evening Worship
Mark 15:22-39
"I Didn't Know"
Sherry Harris and Butch Williams
Our Time and Resources
 

Donations this past week

July 2017 - March 2018
Donations
Other Income
Total Income
Actual
$41,579


$3,012,991
$93,726
$3,106,717
Targeted  
-$18,875


-$59,683
-$999
-$60,682
 
(+) Better or (-) worse for the church than our target
   Attendance for last Sunday:  1,476
Care and Support
Congratulations, hospitalizations, and sympathies

Prayer Requests
Please be in prayer for the following persons: