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

In This Issue
Deadline & Subscriptions
Word from the Pastor: In with the New
Sermon Series: Loving God Means
Church Picnic This Sunday
Feeding Our Neighbors
VBS Roars with Life
Back-to-School Bash July 31
Choir Picnic Aug. 4
Respond about Advent Devotional by Next Thursday
August Mission Emphasis on Fairmount School
Wednesday Programs Kick Off Aug. 14
Register Now for Fall Student Retreat
Students to Serve at Sharing Christ
Summer Serve Opened Eyes
Great Escape Forged Bonds
Looking Ahead
Gifts to the Church
Music Notes
Pray for One Another
Church Calendar
Our Church Officers
July 28
7th Sunday after Pentecost
Scout Sunday
Genesis 2:4-9, 15
1 John 3:1-3
Loving Creation
Sam Weddington
To God Be the Glory
July 14: 9:00: 138; 11:00: 84
July 21: 9:00: 142; 11:00: 94
Click here to livestream our contemporary service. You can also access past sermons and ministry videos on our YouTube account, "FPC Bristol."
Deadline & Subscriptions
Deadline for contributions is the Monday of the week of publication. To subscribe to our free e-newsletter, send an email with your name and preferred email address to


on First Presbyterian Church

July 25, 2019
Word from the Pastor: In with the New

Now, however, you all must strip yourselves of these things: the desire to punish, your temper, spite, speaking evil of one another, and foul language from your mouth. Don't deceive one another. You have renounced the old self, along with its practices, and have put on the new self which is being renewed in the image intended by its creator. That image is not Greek or Jewish, circumcised or uncircumcised, outsider, uncivilized, slave or free. Instead, Christ is all and in all!
Colossians 3:8-11 (My translation)
I hope everyone's summer has gone well and been enjoyable and without incident. For some, this time has been one of relaxation and renewal. For others, maybe all the plans have been stressful, and as you have moved from event to event, or locale to locale, you've found yourself at your wits' end. Again, I hope not, but I know it happens.
I know it happens because I've been there. There have been years when getting the "crew" together to go and do something has been a chore, to say the least, and as the trip progressed, one thing after another just didn't pan out the way I had envisioned. People get sick. Sometimes the weather just won't cooperate. Often, and this is true of longer trips, people get tired and want to get off the itinerary.
If you are anything like me, this doesn't sit well. All that time planning, and all for naught! Don't the kids get what a major investment of your time, energy, and strength was put into getting all this together? Why doesn't my spouse get it? How in the world did the hotel lose my reservation?
Again, I get it. In the way of advice, and not to sound too clich├ęd, counting to ten does help. So does a deep breath. Sometimes, you might just find that your rope has a little length left before you reach the end. More than anything, it is good to remember that you did all this out of love, and though things might not be going according to plan, the love that inspired your great road trip cannot vanish into the ether just because life happened to throw you a curveball.
In short, you've got to hold on to, remember, and embrace the best part of your motives as well as the best in others, even though they aren't cooperating. It's the love that's worth remembering, not the negativity. In a way, it is through love that we touch upon our true natures, our true selves as God's children. Who we truly are never ceases (see 1 Corinthians 13:8). Even better, that love which is truly the bridge between the broken fragments of our time and God's eternity is constantly new and fresh because it issues forth from the living heart of God in Christ Jesus.
What's great is that, as Christians, we know this because we are new creation, born of God's self-giving love. That love has renewed us despite our own flaws. That love doesn't allow us the luxury of seeing ourselves, our motives, and our hearts separately from the good of others. In this new creation conformed to the image of God present in us through Christ, God's designs are beginning to bloom. In God's purposes, not only are we being renewed, so are others with whom we are frustrated. Because of this grace, we no longer throw up walls of separation that allow us to speak or think evil of others with whom we are called to share in the divine communion.
Because we are new creation, what we are left with is a vision in which, as Paul tells us, Christ is all and in all. His reconciling love motivates our actions. He even dominates our vision as we look upon those around us.
It's hard to look upon your kids, your spouse, your neighbor, your fellow congregant, see Christ, and stay mad for very long!
In Christ,
Pastor Sam
Sermon Series: Loving God Means ...

For the next several weeks, Pastor Sam will continue his series of sermons on some of the practical implications of what it means to say that we love God. He is preaching on loving our neighbors, ourselves, creation, our families, our enemies, One greater than ourselves, and what God loves. If you can't be in church on a particular Sunday, be sure to catch the video online via our website or YouTube channel.
Church Picnic This Sunday
Please join us this Sunday, July 28, for One Worship and a fun-filled afternoon! The service will begin at 9:00 on the lawn, and Sunday School will follow. Then we'll picnic under the oaks! The church will provide hotdogs, and our Troop 3 Boy Scouts will cook them. We encourage our church families to bring:
  • Folding chairs and blankets. We will provide a limited number of folding chairs and tables for those who need them.
  • A side dish, if the first initial of your last name begins with the letters A-L; or a dessert (initials of last name M-Z). We don't have a lot of refrigerator and oven space for potluck food, so please use your own cooler.
After lunch, we will box up the canned goods collected during our month-long mission emphasis on the Bristol Emergency Food Pantry, and then serve together at the Food Pantry. For more information, contact Dave Welch at
Feeding Our Neighbors
In July our mission scope has been focused on the Bristol Emergency Food Pantry, the hub for integrated food and poverty assistance on both sides of Bristol. Last year, under the direction of our own Jim White, the Pantry provided hunger relief to 14,000 residents. We have been collecting food for the Pantry all month. We also welcome monetary donations.
This Sunday, July 28, we will celebrate One Worship at 9:00 then enjoy a picnic on the grounds around 11:00, after Sunday School. When we've eaten, we will box up the food we've collected throughout the month and take it to the Pantry (21 Washington St., behind the old train station), where we will help out in any way we can.
Here is the list of items we're collecting this week:
For Sunday, July 28
Dry Cereal
Canned Fruit/Vegetables
Quick Oats
VBS Roars with Life
We had an excellent time at ROAR VBS, where life is wild but God is good! More than 70 children attended during our three days, and more than 60 volunteers worked with the kids and staff. Each night began with dinner, which was followed by games, Bible stories, crafts, and stories of children who have learned that even when life changes, or is unfair, scary, or sad, and even when life is good, God is good! Thank you so much to everyone who helped! Until next year! / Lilly Osborne

Back-to-School Bash July 31

The Children's Ministry will hold an end-of-summer bash at Middlebrook pool at 5:30 p.m., Wednesday, July 31. Hotdogs and water will be provided. For more information, contact Lilly Osborne at .
Choir Picnic Aug. 4
Our yearly choir picnic will be held in the chapel next Sunday, August 4, right after the late service (so around 12:15). All members of the choir and anyone interested in joining the choir or learning more about traditional worship music are warmly invited to this potluck event. Meat and drinks will be provided, so feel free to bring a side dish or dessert. The warming station and the refrigerator will be available in the adjacent kitchen. Following lunch and fellowship, we will hold an hourlong casual rehearsal to kick off our new season. Hope to see you there! / Chris Bingham
Respond about Advent Devotional by Next Thursday
The Worship Committee invites the congregation to participate in our 2019 Advent Devotional by submitting devotions of no more than 300 words. Your contributions will enhance our time of waiting and preparation for the celebration of the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ.
If you would like to share a devotion, complete the form available at the church and place it in the offering plate or leave it in the church office. The committee needs to hear from you by August 1 to determine whether we will have the number of devotions needed for a booklet. If we do, you will need to submit by yours October 1. You may email your devotion to Han Ong at or leave it in the church office. If you have questions, contact Candy Phelps at or 423-538-8801.
August Mission Emphasis on Fairmount School
FPC's Evangelism & Outreach Committee continues our church's Monthly Mission Emphasis in August with a call for office supplies for teachers at our neighborhood school. On the Sundays of August 11 and August 18, members are invited to bring to worship and place around the communion table (like the Food Pantry offerings) the following supplies for teachers at Fairmount Elementary School: tape dispensers, scissors, mechanical pencils, gel pens, highlighters, Post-it notes, sticky tabs, Sharpies, staples, paper clips, binder clips, tissues, Magic Markers, colored file folders, and erasers. For more information, contact Dave Welch at
Wednesday Programs Kick Off Aug. 14
Our Wednesday program kickoff is scheduled for August 14, beginning as always with a fellowship supper at 5:30 followed by programs for youth, children, and adults. Be sure to join us! We are excited to begin the semester with an intentional multiweek opportunity for spiritual nurture. Our time together will include hymns and praise songs, prayer, and Bible study in the chapel. Among the other programs of the semester will be information about FPC's mission trips and supported programs. Please mark your calendars for Wednesdays beginning August 14.
Register Now for Fall Student Retreat
Invite your friends and come to FPC's Fall Student Retreat at Doe River Gorge in Hampton! This special weekend for students in grades seven through twelve is scheduled for August 1 through September 2. It will include wild fun, adventure in the great outdoors, worship, and bonding with your church family. We will leave Saturday and return Monday afternoon. Join us for a weekend of fun and fellowship with your friends!
If you register with a deposit by August 11, you will receive a T-shirt, and the total cost of the trip will be $150. After August 11, the price will increase to $175 and a T-shirt size cannot be guaranteed. Register at the link below and pay the $50 deposit. Turn in money to the church or pay online at
Ready to go? ==> REGISTER HERE <==
Students to Serve at Sharing Christ
Student Ministries will gather for a day of service with Sharing Christ Ministries this Saturday, July 27. Students are invited to meet at the church at 2:30 p.m. to prepare food for the meal to be served at the mission. Enter the church at the back door near the kitchen. At 4:00 the group will head to the downtown mission to serve dinner to our community. The fun will end around 7:00.
Summer Serve Opened Eyes
Our team of high school students spent a busy week volunteering with Serve Orlando this summer. The team cleaned and stocked grocery shelves for United Against Poverty and spent a day holding babies and playing games with the kids at Orlando Day Nursery, which offers free child care to low-income families. Students also spent a morning at an organization that recycles soap and sends it to countries in need. At Clean The World, students sifted through barrels of soap from hotels to separate bottles and bars. Another day was spent at the Orlando Union Rescue Mission playing games with children, painting nails, and being human jungle gyms. The final day was spent serving at The Russell Home for Atypical Children, which serves children and adults with special needs. The trip was capped by a day at Universal Studios.
These service experiences were eye-opening and exciting opportunities to make a difference in the lives of others. Our students eagerly jumped into any role they could to serve the people of Orlando, and they beautifully represented the hands and feet of God.

Great Escape Forged Bonds
Great escape was an incredible week of wildness, mess, laughter, and spiritual growth for our middle schoolers. Amid the water balloons and shaving cream, students grew in their faith through worship and message. Each night we got to break it down in our family time while we grew closer together. Students got the chance to finally jump off the diving board and plunge into what it looks like to own our faith and apply it in our everyday lives. Students who may not have known each other at the start of the week left with an unbreakable bond.

Looking Ahead
Standing on the promontory of high summer and shading our eyes, we can see before us our fall semester of programs and plans. They are about to burst into bloom just beyond this Sunday's church picnic, next Sunday's choir picnic, and the back-to-school events scattered here and there. Also growing is our church lawn, where we will hold worship and eat lunch July 28. Pat Flannagan (July 24 -27) will mow the grass for our comfort, and JB Madison (July 31 -August 3) will follow up.
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 honor of:
Pat Flannagan: to the Music Projects Fund from Karen & John Vann
In memory of:
Patsy Frizzell: to the Minister's Discretionary Fund from First Tennessee, from Peggy Peters
Bob Kitchen: to the Technology Fund from Karen & John Vann
Mac McElroy: to the Capital Campaign Fund from Tom & Leigh King
Louise Rutherford: to the Minister's Discretionary Fund from Karen & John Vann
Jane Sheffey: to the Minister's Discretionary Fund from Jason Alley, from Jim Daniel, from Martha Daniel, from Barbara Duncan, from Dee Eldreth, from Gay Hillman, from Mr. & Mrs. Thomas Smith, from Karen & John Vann, from Virginia Highlands Community College Educational Foundation
Marynan Smith: to the Minister's Discretionary Fund from Linda Darnell, from Peggy Peters, from Karen & John Vann
Ray Stocstill (Rett's father): to the Minister's Discretionary Fund from Karen & John Vann
Kathy Story (Brandon's mother): to the Memorial Fund from Karen & John Vann
Barbara Thomas: to the Capital Campaign Fund from Tom & Leigh King; to the Memorial Fund from Dot Mattison, from Lee & Robin North, from Karen & John Vann; to the Minister's Discretionary Fund from Peggy Peters
Janet Weddington: to the Technology Fund from Karen & John Vann
Music Notes
Sunday's music:
For One Worship this Sunday, the children will be blessing us with their beautiful voices in "To God Be the Glory." This song, part of the resource pack for Vacation Bible School this year, has an African feel in tune with the VBS theme, Roar! VBS resource packs are distributed by Group Publishing, an organization committed to creating experiences to help people grow in relationship with Jesus and one another. The company was founded by Thom Shultz, who as a young youth minister created a magazine to help worship planners gain access to Christian education resources geared towards children and youth.
Pray for One Another

In Our Prayers
Please also include in your prayers members of our community who wish to remain anonymous.
Wayne Ausmus
Gene Blankenship
Joonho & Heeah Chang
Ryleigh Childers
Christians in Nigeria/ECWA
Rachel Davis
Mandy Dorton
Ethiopian brothers & sisters
DeeDee & Sarah Galliher
Diane Glymph
Ron Grubbs
Jan Harnick
John Holler family
David & Andrea Hyde
Sam Jennings
Kristi Johnson
Kara Keys
Marty Keys & family
Nancy King
Dot Mattison
Stellie May (Southeast Asia mission)
Carl McGrady
Ginny Osborne
Pendley family
Don Preston
Bob Rhea
Larry Roberts (Greg's brother)
Virginia Rutherford
Stigers family
Ashley Thomasson
Chuck Thompson
Herb VanNostrand
Erin Yates
Sarfriaz Zaidi
Our love and sympathy are with Katie McInnis in the death of her uncle, Tom Robinson; with Drew Rice in the death of his grandfather, Roy Wells; and with Larry Sharrett in the death of his grandmother, Pansy Brown Brittenham.
Birthday Prayer Fellowship
July 28         Ralph Booher, Jennifer Kennedy
July 29         Shawn Nelson
July 30         Lisa Holmes
Aug. 2         Dan Kreiss, Peggy Nicar
Aug. 3         Jon Pruner
Church Calendar
Sunday, July 28
9:00 a.m.       One Worship, Church Lawn
                          Sunday School
11:00 a.m.     Lunch on the Lawn
                          Boxing Food, FPC
                          Volunteering at BEFP, 21 Washington St.
Monday, July 29
7:00 p.m.       Middle School FISH, Off Campus
Tuesday, July 30
10:00 a.m.     Staff Meeting, Room 117
10:00 a.m.     Morning Prayer Group, Conf. Room
7:00 p.m.       Boy Scout Court of Honor, Chapel
7:00 p.m.       Boy Scout Troop 3, Scout Wing
Wednesday, July 31
5:30 p.m.       Back-to-School Bash, Middlebrook Pool
6:00 p.m.       Worship Team, Fellowship Hall
6:30 p.m.       MEF, Room 123
7:00 p.m.       High School Dinner & Devo, Off Campus
Thursday, August 1
7:00 a.m.       Men's Bible Study, Parlor
12:00 p.m.     Noon Bible Study, Room 117
Our Church Officers
Church Officers
Class of 2019
Class of 2020
Class of 2021
Anna Booher
Nancy Allerton
Ann Abel
Lee Galliher
Rebecca Beck
Randy Cook
Pete Holler
David Hyde
John Graham
Han Ong
Jordan Pennington
Katie McInnis
Pete Stigers
Jerry Poteat
John Vann
Sujean Bradley
Blake Bassett
Fred Harkleroad
George Linke
Rhonda Comer
Matt Kingsley
Greg Roberts
Ron Fox
Lisa McClain
Nate Sproles
Brenda Lawson
Drew Rice
Bill Whisnant
Barbara Thompson
Joyce Samuel
Nancy Cook
Peggy Hill
Jack Butterworth