First United Methodist Church
of Longview
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The Voice
November 24, 2021
Advent is upon us. This season of anticipation and expectancy often stands in conflict with a world that jumps immediately to Christmas celebrations. I can already listen to Christmas music on satellite radio, decorations for Christmas are already up, and Black Friday shopping specials are already offered continually well before Thanksgiving. Advent is a season where the expectancy before Jesus' birth is juxtaposed with the current expectancy of Christ's second coming in a culmination of God's transformative work in Christ. However you approach this season ahead, I hope you approach it with a spirit of joy in what God has done, is doing, and is yet to do.

I am especially guilty of aspiring to such high expectations of myself and others that I get consumed with what isn't perfect and am consequently robbed of the joy God offers. I allow joy to become elusive by the weightiness of the high expectations and life disappointments that I experience. Maybe you suffer from this also, and perhaps you are just distracted by the trappings of this season ahead. For some, the recent experience of trials or personal loss causes us to grieve so deeply that we are robbed of our joy. That struggle is why we offer Blue Christmas Worship (December 5 at 6 PM in the Sanctuary) during the Advent Season to deal with emotions of grief.

Even as the early church was struggling and challenged on many fronts, the followers of Jesus Christ were called to rejoice and allow their joy to flow in faithful witness to one another and the wider world. Today, we find many troubling, challenging, and distracting things that rob us of our joy! I hope and pray that we will allow joy to be our focus and our purpose during this Advent/Christmas Season. May we embrace the joy that God offers through Jesus Christ and offer it generously to our family, friends, and world. Let's awaken to God's gifts and participate in God's continued efforts to bring joy to our world.

We begin our Advent Season this Sunday with Hanging of the Greens Worship. We will celebrate the Hanging of the Greens in the Faith Center during Horizon Worship at 8:30 AM and in the Sanctuary at Beacon Worship at 10:45 AM (no Ascension Worship this Sunday). I hope you will join us as we embrace joy together.

Grace and Peace,
Pastor Jay
Where are you connected?
Thank you to all who attended our Thanksgiving Potluck last Wednesday evening! It was a wonderful night of thankfulness and fellowship.
Volunteers needed for Handbells & Hot Chocolate before the Christmas Parade
Each year we offer hot chocolate to the spectators at the Longview Christmas Parade. This is a wonderful opportunity to interact with our neighbors and spread the Christmas cheer by being a Beacon of Hope for All during this season. This year's parade is on December 2. Volunteers will need to arrive at 5:15 PM and the parade starts at 6:30 PM. Call the church office to sign up or contact Pastor Romnie for more information.
Blue Christmas Worship will also be live-streamed on our website and on Facebook!
The Children's Ministry will host the craft table at Pancakes with Santa, and we are in need of volunteers to assist children in assembling a simple craft. Each shift is 30 minutes, but you may sign up for more than one shift if you wish. We appreciate your willingness to be a part of this festive event!
We will be having a Confirmation parent meeting on Sunday, January 9th at 9:40 AM in the Purple Room. Please let Jana know if you will be unable to attend!
All children in grades 2-5 are invited to participate as an acolyte during Beacon Worship. Parents, please check your calendars and click here to sign your acolyte(s) up to serve! This will allow us to print their names in the bulletin each Sunday. Email Jana at jana@lvfumc.org with questions.
Please note: there will be no Ascension Worship on November 28!
**Seniors - we will have rehearsal for Hanging of the Greens on Saturday, November 27 in the Sanctuary at 2:00 PM!**
Save the date for December Wednesday Night Live!

December 1 from 6:00-7:30 PM in the Youth Wing - Nacho Game Night, white elephant Christmas gifts, and toy drive collection. Bring a dessert to share, a $3 or less gift for white elephant, and a gift for the toy drive (for teens. Gifts such as Nerf guns, plush blankets, basketballs, skateboards, footballs, arts & crafts kits, makeup kits, jewelry, backpacks or purses, etc). Please do not wrap gift donations.

December 8 from 6:00-7:30 PM in the Youth Wing - Pizza, Popcorn, and Christmas Movie Night (check our Instagram for voting options). Bring your favorite candy and a blanket for during the movie!

December 15 from 5:15-9:30 PM (meet in the North parking lot) - Youth Christmas Party! Check out the graphic above for details.
Congratulations to Joshua Crum for earning his Eagle Scout badge. His ceremony was held on November 14 in the Sanctuary. 
The Haverty's/Newgate Angel Tree wishlists are LIVE on our website! We hope you will consider adopting a wishlist this year. Click the buttons below to visit our website or Facebook page.
The FUMC gift drop-off date will be on December 12 from 8:15 - 11:00 AM in the church office. Select your wishlist(s), shop for that child or children, and drop the unwrapped gifts in the church office - it's that easy! We'll bag and label everything for you. Please remember to bring the confirmation email with your child or children's names and ID#.
Spring Semester Terrific Tuesday Volunteers Needed!
Interested in doing something fulfilling? Want to make a difference in the life of a child? Interested in a free supply of hugs and smiles? Sign up to volunteer with the spring semester of Terrific Tuesday! Click the button below to sign up or contact Pastor Romnie at romnie@lvfumc.org for more information.
Volunteers needed for Pancakes With Santa.
Set up and decorate December 2 from 9:00 AM-Noon and December 3 from 9:00 AM till finished. At the event on December 4 (9:00-11:30 AM) we need greeters, craft helpers, servers, table crews, and a clean-up crew. You can sign up for the following shifts: 8:30-9:30, 9:30-10:30, 10:30-11:30, and clean-up starting at 11:30. Call the church office or contact Pastor Romnie for more information.
Poinsettias for Christmas!
Poinsettias can be ordered in honor or in memory of a loved one, or for your home and business. They are $18 each.

Please click the button below to download the order form, or you may fill one out at the Welcome Center and return it with payment to the Church office.

This is a fundraiser for the Music Ministry.
Life Together at FUMC Longview
If you or someone you know is sick or hospitalized and is unable to attend worship with us, please let us know!

Contact the church office at 903-753-4463 or email us at info@lvfumc.org
To submit an article for The Voice, please email Megan Hopper at megan@lvfumc.org. Info must be submitted by Friday at
5 PM in order to be in next week's edition of The Voice.
First United Methodist Church of Longview
400 N. Fredonia St. Longview, Texas 75601
Tel: (903) 753.4463
Fax: (903) 236.7608