September 30, 2021
Word from the Pastor:
Every Tribe and Tongue
After this I looked, and there was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, robed in white, with palm branches in their hands. They cried out in a loud voice, saying, “Salvation belongs to our God who is seated on the throne, and to the Lamb!”
Sunday and, particularly, our communion service will be a little different this week. October 3 is World Communion Sunday, when we celebrate that regardless of geographic location, time, culture, race, or language, there has been, is, and always will be a united body of Christ destined to glorify God and enjoy Him forever. This is in fulfillment of Jesus’s own words that people will come from every corner of the earth to take their seat in God’s kingdom (Matthew 8:11 and Luke 13:29).
So, this World Communion Sunday, we will celebrate not only the fact that a place has been made for us at the table, but also that among us we already see the fruit of that promise. It wasn’t until we began to talk about it as a staff that we realized that no fewer than nine languages are represented in our congregation, spoken either natively or by those who have been blessed to be called to mission throughout the world. More than that, a good many of us have come to our land from another country. In so many ways, people have come from east and west and north and south to take their place in God’s kingdom and make that reality present among us.
To celebrate this amazing reality at work in our midst, we will give the Invitation to the Lord’s Table in several different languages. The hard thing for most of us will be that we probably won’t know what in the world is being said. It might even be a little confusing and unsettling. That’s okay; all worship is directed towards God, and I am confident He knows exactly what is being said and what is going on.
Think about this wonderful reality at work in us! It really is a foretaste of the coming kingdom spoken of by John in Revelation 7. There, gathered around the throne in praise, we are all destined to take up a white robe and palm branch and cry out in a loud voice, “Salvation belongs to our God who is seated on the throne, and to the Lamb!” On Sunday, a little bit of heaven will intersect earth as God’s will is accomplished on earth as in heaven, as Jesus taught us to pray.
Officer Nominating Process
Over the past two years, many of us have stayed close to home, avoided crowds, and missed being among our sisters and brothers in Christ at First Presbyterian Church. But as the pandemic continues, so does the work of the church here in Bristol and around the world. In the spirit of reconnecting and reaching out, the Nominating Committee invites you to prayerfully consider who would best serve in the important church offices of deacon, elder, and trustee. Maybe you feel the call to serve in this way, or maybe someone you know would be just the right fit for one of these roles. The Nominating Committee will be accepting nominations through the end of October.
Nominating forms will be available in the bulletin and on the tables outside the sanctuary and fellowship hall. Completed forms can be returned to the church office or the visitors’ card boxes (Connect) in the fellowship hall. Online forms are available on our website
. If you prefer, email your recommendations directly to the Nominating Committee
We Celebrate World Communion Sunday Oct. 3
In celebration of World Communion Sunday, the Invitation to the Lord’s Table this Sunday will reflect the linguistic and cultural diversity present in our congregation.
19th Sunday after Pentecost
World Communion Sunday
Parable of the Other Lost Son
Last Sunday’s Attendance
9:00: In person: 111;
Livestream: 34; Playback: 96
11:00: In person: 80;
Livestream: 18; Playback: 45
Sunday, October 3
Monday, October 4
Board of Deacons
Tuesday, October 5
Boy Scout Troop 3
Wednesday, October 6
High School Small Groups
Wednesday Night Kids
Praise Band Practice
Thursday, October 7
Men’s Bible Study
Human Resources Committee
We Want to Hear from You
Our Stewardship campaign for 2022 is taking off, and we are asking you to help fuel it by sharing your stories of the part the church has played in your life in 2021. We are eager to hear how you and your family have experienced community and grace in our life together. Please send us an email telling your story or an experience you have had of God’s grace in our communal life. If you can, please include pictures and videos. Your story could be used by the Stewardship Committee in the upcoming campaign. You may, of course, ask to remain anonymous. Email your stories, pictures, and videos directly to the Stewardship Committee
or link to the mailer
FPC volunteers served at Sharing Christ in May 2018.
Sharing Christ Needs Volunteers
Our next opportunity to serve those in need in downtown Bristol is coming up October 9. Will you join us in this outreach through the Sharing Christ mission? We need a couple more volunteers to serve dinner at the mission and clean up afterwards. Please contact Beth Flannagan or Becca Tate
, if you can help.
We encourage you to use text, mail, or our website to safely continue your faithful support of our ministries during the pandemic. You can give online by going to our website
and clicking on “Give” in the upper right corner. You can send your pledge, offering, or special gift by texting “fpcbristol” to 73256
, or mail your checks directly to the church.
After David Moore (September 29–October 2) has taught the church lawn to hold its countless green tongues, we will celebrate World Communion Sunday by welcoming everyone to the table in the many tongues spoken in our congregation. Randy Olson (October 6–9) will deliver the follow-up lesson.
How to Join Us Online
You can watch the livestream of our worship services and other activities at FPC Bristol on YouTube
. Click on the link and hit “subscribe” to receive notifications of new videos. To connect to our various Facebook sites, go to Facebook and type in “FPC Bristol.” Several accounts will show up. “Like” the page or ask to join a group.
Gifts to the Church
Memorials and honoraria are published in the newsletter only after the family has been personally notified by our business office. Today we gratefully acknowledge the following gifts in memory of:
Ron Grubbs: to the Minister’s Discretionary Education Fund from Sam & Phyllis Marcy; to the Minister’s Discretionary Fund from Tom & Leigh King
Alice Moore: to the Minister’s Discretionary Fund from Ann Abel, from Ginger & Mitch Cain, from Albert & Lisa Cooper, from Linda Darnell, from Carl & Marian Galliher, from Eddie & Peggy Hill, from Julie King, from Tom & Leigh King, from Nancy Kiser and family, from Hans & Pat Lengers, from Daryl & Susan Lichtefeld, from Carl & Reveley McGrady, from Gerard McNeill, from John Peters, from Dotty Royston, from Becky Wilkerson
Prelude: The origin of the tune for “Dona nobis pacem” is unknown, yet its beauty shines through in this simple arrangement for eight handbells. Its message is equally beautiful in any language.
Anthem: “Celtic Laud” is arranged is for SATB voices, piano, and flute. The flute part is printed separately, and as we don’t have a flutist, I created an organ score to cover both instruments.
Communion: “World Communion Handbells” was created by Matt Johnson (b. 1961; pictured), an American pianist, composer, teacher, engraver, and publisher living in Florida. Necessity proved to be the mother of invention for his arrangement. A fledgling group of handbell ringers was tasked to present a musical work in celebration of World Communion Sunday. Unable to find a suitable piece, Johnson combined “Let Us Break Bread Together” and “One Bread, One Body” to create this medley for handbell quartet with piano accompaniment. Our accompanist is Melissa Galliher.
Postlude: William Walond (c. 1725–1770) was an organist and composer who appears to have lived all his life in Oxford. He was not an academic but ranked as a tradesman, employed by Christ Church College as an assistant organist, yet he won the respect of professors of music and organists throughout Britain. I first encountered this “Voluntary in G” in a Treasury of Early Organ Music, to which the editor felt the need to add harmonies and a pedal part. Unlike the organs of northern Germany, most organs in 18th century England did not have a pedal division. So I am playing this piece as Walond would have, manuals only, with his original organ registrations.
Birthday Prayer Fellowship
To help protect your personal data, we no longer list birthdates in Windows. Instead, we publish an alphabetical list of those having birthdays in a given month in the issue closest to the first day of that month.
Flora Mae Turner
In Our Prayers
Please also pray for the members of our community who wish to remain anonymous.
Anna Arbo & family
Bill & Betty Bingham
Bud & Marg Branscomb
Bristol Tennessee City Schools
Garrett Foster & family
John Graham Sr.
Emma & Gina Grubbs
Davan & Kristi Johnson
Kaduna State, Nigeria
Jim & Joan Keith
Marty & Kara Keys
Morgan & Josh King & family
Montana Indian Ministries
National & international leadership
Palestine & Israel
Pastor Bruce Plummer
Cora Lee Raccioppo
Family of Elijah Hekeem Ramey
Teachers & school administrators
Deadline & Subscriptions
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701 Florida Avenue | Bristol, TN 37620 | 423-764-7176 | fpcbristol.org