First Presbyterian Church  |  701 Florida Avenue  |  Bristol, TN 37620  |  423-764-7176  |

In This Issue
About Windows
FPC 2017 Holiday Worship and Events
Joy Gift Offering This Sunday
Money Makes the World Go Round
Caroling, Coloring, and Chick-fil-A
Christmas Eve Cookie Delivery
Annual Women's Retreat Feb. 23-25
Parents' Night Out Tomorrow
Join Us for a Progressive Dinner!
Music Notes
Pray for One Another
Church Officers
Church Calendar
December 10
2nd Sunday of Advent
Sanctuary Choir Music Special
Ordination & Installation of Officers
Isaiah 40:1-11
Mark 1:1-8
Message in Song (11:00)
Vivaldi's Gloria in D major, RV589
Sanctuary Choir, Soloists, Instrumentalists
Dave Welch
Songs (8:30)
O Come, O Come Emmanuel
Be Lifted High
Light of the World
How Great Thou Art
Hymns (11:00)
Comfort, Comfort Ye, My People
Savior of the Nations, Come
Last Sunday's Attendance
8:30: 95; 11:00: 131
Deadline for contributions to Windows is the Monday of the week of publication. The newsletter is emailed a minute after midnight on Thursday morning.

Windows is a publication of First Presbyterian Church, Bristol, TN. Please direct questions and suggestions to the editor, Kathy Acuff,


on First Presbyterian Church

December 7, 2017
FPC 2017 Holiday Worship and Events

With yesterday's Heart to Heart Blankets & Blessings gathering, we entered our season of holiday events at First Presbyterian Church. This Sunday, December 10, at 11:00 a.m. we have something very festive indeed, as the Sanctuary Choir presents a Music Special with soloists and instrumentalists. You can find more information about their beautiful gift to the congregation under "Music Notes" in this newsletter. At this joyful service, we will ordain and install our new church officers and collect our annual Joy Gift offering, benefiting PCUSA Ministries.
The following Sunday, December 17, the children of the church will present their delightful Christmas Pageant at 5:30 p.m., in the sanctuary. Children and their adult friends will go caroling to nursing homes Wednesday, December 20, at 3:30 p.m.
After our 10:30 a.m. ONE Worship service in the sanctuary on Sunday, December 24, we will box cookies and take them to workers in our community who must work on Christmas Eve. At 7:00 p.m., we will hold our Christmas Eve Candlelight and Communion service in the sanctuaryand collect an offering for the Minister's Discretionary Fund.
We will hold ONE Worship in the Fellowship Hall on New Year's Eve, Sunday, December 31, at 10:30 a.m. and take up an offering for Five Cents A Meal programs.
You won't want to miss anything, so keep this summary handy:
2017 Holiday Worship & Events at FPC
Sunday, Dec. 10
11:00 a.m.
Choir Music Special
Sunday, Dec. 17
5:30 p.m.
Christmas Pageant
Wed., Dec. 20
3:30 p.m.
Children's Caroling, Coloring, Chick-fil-A
Sunday, Dec. 24
10:30 a.m.
ONE Worship
Sunday, Dec. 24
7:00 p.m.
Candlelight Communion
Sunday, Dec. 31
10:30 a.m.
ONE Worship
Fellowship Hall

Joy Gift Offering This Sunday

We will collect our annual Joy Gift offering this Sunday, December 10, in the midst of special, seasonal music in both services. This offering will benefit PCUSA Ministries.
Pastoral Musing
Money Makes the World Go Round
I have watched with intense interest several television specials that follow the changed lives of people who have won a Mega Lottery. Part of my desire is to wonder how I would react, or what would change in my own life, if I were just such a person. Part of that desire is also my sinfulness, a perverse satisfaction in an evident truth that most folks are not prepared to deal with the significant changes in their life that having an exorbitant amount of money brings. The television specials treat as entertainment the poorest decisions they make, which usually lead to bankruptcy. Many folks who win a lottery are often financially worse off within a year of winning. Even though I've never played, I do wonder, with recklessness, what would it be like? The simple truth highlighted over and over in the stories is that winning a lottery simply exacerbates orientations and foibles already present, tendencies both good and bad. Money has incredible power in and over our lives, power that is good and power that is bad.
There are two issues for me. The first is how our identities get all wrapped up, tied up in knots, by how much or how little we have in the way of money. Some 50 years ago, my sister had a poster on her wall that read "Money isn't everything ... but it's way ahead of whatever's in second place." We can't help it; our orientation to money reflects our sinfulness, our brokenness; we associate power, authority, and identity with how much or how little money someone has. My identity is supposed to be found in God alone, in Christ alone, yet I too easily and too often allow this grace-filled simple identity to be replaced, over and over and over again with something less, and I move away from God.
Several years ago I was asked what I would do to help the church if I won a lottery, and was reminded once again, "You have to play if you want to win." And here is my second point. I don't play the lottery, because as we all know, "There are no real shortcuts in life." I am confident that God has formed and transformed me more as I've struggled with money-purpose, value, power, and identity-than if I had won it or if it had simply been given to me. Questions like, What must I do to earn it? When will I have enough of it? What is important for me to spend it on? How do I teach my children to value it rightly? How may I glorify God in my attitudes and in my actions by its use? My questions would take up pages. This, after all, is a musing.
I am sure of this: there are no shortcuts. Just as I have to invite God into my internal conversation to transform me, to mold me more and more into the image of Christ, the Session of Elders and the larger community at First Presbyterian Church must do the same. How does the church, and how will we as the church gathered at First Presbyterian in Bristol, wrestle with the power of money in our lives? It is after all a most necessary encounter. The Elders will be gathering in retreat next Saturday for just this purpose. Who are we? Who is God inviting us to be? How do our mission and vision statements reflect that understanding to ourselves but, more importantly, to the world outside our doors? The bottom line really is how our 2018 budget, the money God has entrusted to us for the mission of God's church, the body gathered here at First Presbyterian, will reflect our identity in Christ. Please ENGAGE with the Elders in prayer before, during, and after their retreat, for God's direction, purpose, and transforming power. \ Dave Welch
Caroling, Coloring, and Chick-fil-A

The Children's Ministries will go caroling to nursing homes on Wednesday, December 20, at 3:30 p.m. We are calling this event "Caroling, Coloring, and Chick-fil-A." The children will color large advent posters that we will take with us. If you would like to be among the happy throng coloring, caroling, and eating chicken sandwiches, please contact Lilly Osborne by calling the church office at 423-764-7176 or emailing Lilly at
Christmas Eve Cookie Delivery

If you would like to participate in our Christmas Eve Cookie Delivery, please bring a batch or two of cookies to ONE Worship on December 24. After the 10:30 a.m. service, we will box up assortments of cookies and deliver them to the firefighters, police officers, nurses, and others who have to work on Christmas Eve. This is a very rewarding effort, and we encourage you to participate!
Annual Women's Retreat Feb. 23-25
h2h logo - new
Mark your calendars! Our ever-popular Annual Women's Retreat in Blowing Rock is set for February 23-25. We'll share details as we confirm them. Stay tuned!
Parents' Night Out Tomorrow
Bring your children to the Education Wing tomorrow, Friday, December 8, for Parents' Night Out. We will have fun from 6:00 to 8:30 p.m., and we'll even feed the kids! This event is for newborns through sixth graders. Please let Lilly Osborne know the number and ages of the children you will bring, then start making your plans for a carefree evening! You can reach Lilly through the church office (423-764-7176) or at
Student Ministries
Join Us for a Progressive Dinner!

High School Dinner: 4:00 p.m., Sunday, December 10
Bring friends and get ready for fun night! Our high school progressive dinner will begin at the church. From there, we will travel to different homes for appetizers, a main course, and dessert. We'll play games at each stop and hold a wild gift exchange at the end. We'll return to the church for pickup.
What to bring:
  • 1 $10 gift for the exchange
  • 5 stocking stuffers for volunteer stockings
For more information or to sign up, contact Katie Arnold, Director of Student Ministries, at 770-296-1671 or
Music Notes
Sunday's early service songs: You can hear the songs we'll sing in the 8:30 service here.
Sunday's late service music participants: Pat Flannagan, Bob Greene, Sanctuary Choir, Nancy Cook (alto), Ann Holler (soprano), Mary Ellis Rice and Lenita Thibault (mezzo-sopranos). Violins: Benjamin Dawson, David Lugo. Viola: Jonathan Lugo. Cello: Natalie Lugo. Bass: Kim France. Oboe: Heather Killmeyer. Trumpet: Brent Bingham.
Sunday's late service music: "Gloria" was composed in 1715 as a hymn by Antonio Vivaldi for the choir at the Ospedale della Pieta, an orphanage for young girls. Vivaldi (1678-1741) was a priest, composer, music teacher, and virtuoso violinist. Much of his
Theater of the Ospedale della Pieta
music was composed for the Ospedale in Venice, where he spent most of his career. Vivaldi has become one of our most beloved composers and "Gloria" is his most popular work, even though it was not discovered until the late 1920s and was not performed until 1939 in Sienna. The American debut of "Gloria" occurred in 1957 at Brooklyn College in New York. The text, often referred to as "The Greater Doxology," elaborates on this message of the angels, recognizing the goodness and mercy of the Lord God through his Son, Jesus Christ. This prayer dates back to the sixth century and began to be used only at Masses when a bishop was the celebrant, and then only on solemn feasts. However, the beauty of this prayer captivated the priests and faithful. Slowly, permission was granted for priests to use it, but at first only for Easter. By the twelfth century, the Gloria reached its current level of use within the Mass. Today, the Gloria is sung or said at all Sunday Masses and feasts, except during the seasons of Advent and Lent. Whether sung or said, this prayer is one of praise, and our voices should be lifted in praise as we say it and as we hear it!
Organist's footnotes: Near the end of Sunday's service is hymn 102, "Savior of the Nation, Come." Its tune, "Nun komm' der Heiden Heiland," is the first line of the original German (literally, "Now come, Savior of the heathens"). Martin Luther wrote the words of this chorale in 1524, based on the chant "Veni redemptor gentium" by Ambrose. The chorale was used as the prominent hymn for the first Sunday of Advent for centuries. It was used widely in organ settings by Protestant baroque composers, most notably Johann Sebastian Bach. He set it as the opening chorale prelude BWV 599 of the Orgelbüchlein and three times, as BWV 659 (one of his best-known organ compositions), BWV 660, and BWV 661, in his Great Eighteen Chorale Preludes. We will hear all three of these chorale preludes Sunday.
Our prelude, BWV 660, has the form of a trio sonata in which the upper parts are played on the two keyboards of the organ and the basso continuo part is played on the pedals. This chorale prelude is unusually scored as a two-part invention for pedal and bass, with the ornamented cantus firmus in the soprano line following the original hymn melody fairly closely.
The opening ritornello, played imitatively in canon, contains the notes of the cantus firmus-g, g, f , b , a, g, a, g- distributed between the two bass parts.
The offertory, BWV 659, is an ornamental chorale, a form invented and popularized in Northern Germany by Scheidemann, in which the chorale melody is taken by one voice in an elaborate and highly embellished form. Buxtehude was one of its most celebrated exponents, with his individual expressive "vocal" ornamentation. Buxtehude's influence on Bach is evident. Over the moving eighth notes of the continuo-like "walking bass" in the pedal, the two inner parts move forward meditatively in canon, while the florid and melismatic cantus firmus soars above all.
Our postlude, BWV 661, is an example of a cantus firmus chorale. The melody of the chorale is sounded in long notes throughout the piece. This practice was established and popularized in central Germany by Pachelbel. One of Pachelbel's students was Johann Christoph Bach III, Johann Sebastian Bach's older brother, who in turn taught the younger Bach keyboard technique. Beneath a three-part keyboard fugue with an angular eighth note theme derived from the melody, the cantus firmus is heard in the pedal. The fugal theme, its counter-subject, and their inversions are combined in numerous ways in the course of the piece.
Pray for One Another
An extensive list of prayer concerns, "Pray for One Another," is available for pickup at the church each week.
In Our Prayers
DeeDee Galliher
Ron Grubbs
Vivian Hill
Chili Ishmael (Claire Pruner's father)
Don Moneyhun
Jason Mumpower
Linda Pridemore
Tony Raccioppo
Sam Samuel      
Birthday Prayer Fellowship
Dec. 10     Linda Darnell
Dec. 11     Tina Witcher
Dec. 14     Vonda Kent, Jim Mayden, Wendy Olson
Dec. 15     Jim Arnold, Lou Hebb, Laynie Richardson
Dec. 16     Hugh Testerman
Church Officers
PCUSA seal small
Class of 2017
Class of 2018
Class of 2019
Ann Abel
Aaron Brooks
Anna Booher
Beth Flannagan
Randy Cook
Lee Galliher
Tom King
Debbie McMillin
Pete Holler
Ernie Pennington
Stuart Parker
Han Ong
John Vann
Chuck Thompson
Pete Stigers
Class of 2017
Class of 2018
Class of 2019
Jim Mayden
Adam Abel
George Linke
Mark Mervis
Nancy Butterworth
Greg Roberts
Robin North
David Ginn
Nate Sproles
Jordan Pennington
Rett Stocstill
Bill Whisnant
Byron Schiesz
Ann Woods
Church Calendar
Sunday, December 10
8:30 a.m.       Worship, Fellowship Hall
9:45 a.m.       Sunday School
11:00 a.m.     Worship & Music Special, Sanctuary
3:00 p.m.       Officer Training, Room 123
3:30 p.m.       Christmas Pageant Rehearsal, Sanctuary
4:00 p.m.       High School Progressive Dinner, FPC
4:30 p.m.       Finance Committee, Room 117
Monday, December 11
5:30 p.m.       Adult Handbells
7:00 p.m.       Building & Grounds Committee, Room 117
Tuesday, December 12
9:30 a.m.       Staff Meeting, Room 117
10:00 a.m.     Morning Prayer Group, Conference Room
6:00 p.m.       Venture Crew 3, Room 165
7:00 p.m.       Boy Scout Troop 3, Scout Wing
Wednesday, December 13
9:30 a.m.       Women's DVD Bible Study, Coffee Klatch Room
5:30 p.m.       Christmas Pageant Rehearsal, Sanctuary
6:00 p.m.       Pastor Nominating Committee, Room 117
6:00 p.m.       Middle School Gathering, Youth Wing
7:00 p.m.       High School Groups, Youth Wing
7:15 p.m.       Sanctuary Choir
7:30 p.m.       8:30 Worship Team, Fellowship Hall
Thursday, December 14
7:00 a.m.       Men's Bible Study, Parlor
8:30 a.m.       Meals on Wheels, Fellowship Hall
12:00 p.m.     Noon Bible Study, Room 117
5:00 p.m.       Human Resources Committee, Room 117
Saturday, December 16
9:00 a.m.        Session Retreat, FPC