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

In This Issue
Deadlines & Subscriptions
Safety and Security Takeaways from Sunday's Town Hall
In the Pulpit
Engaging Volunteers: Pledging Time and Talents
Meeting to Elect a Trustee May 13
Welcome Our Newest Member
ONE Worship and Confirmation May 13
Parents' Night Out May 11
Sharing Christ Saturday
Last Chance to Claim Your Lost Items Sunday
Join the Care Shepherds Ministry
May Mowers Ever Practice Their Métiers!
Wycliffe Bible Translators Banquet May 10
AMEn in Concert Here Next Friday
Music Notes
Gifts to the Church
Pray for One Another
Church Calendar
Elders and Deacons of FPC
May 6
6th Sunday of Easter
John 15:9-17
Love Lessons from the Grateful Dead
Chuck Thompson
Taste and See
Come, Behold! The Feast of Heaven
Draw Us In the Spirit's Tether
A New Commandment
Last Week's Attendance
8:30: 92; 11:00: 111
Deadlines & Subscriptions
Deadline for contributions to Windows is the Monday of the week of publication. The newsletter is emailed a minute after midnight on Thursday morning. It is posted to our website later that day.

To have Windows delivered to your digital in-box, email the editor at the address below, giving your name and the email address you want to use for the purpose.

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


on First Presbyterian Church

May 3, 2018
Safety and Security Takeaways from Sunday's Town Hall
During the Sunday School hour April 29, approximately 50 folks met to discuss preliminary thoughts regarding the safety and security of our children. The intent was to envision, ask questions, and discern where God may be leading, not to come up with definite plans. Some of the highlights of our conversations are below (in no particular order).
  • We need more volunteers. There are some easy steps to take, if we have people to facilitate them. We need to be vigilant not just for our children's sake also but for the security of all who gather in worship and learning activities. The best security is to have our own, easily identified adults serving as greeters (whether at specific doors or wandering the halls), hall monitors, and classroom teachers.
  • There are many questions which we need to address and answer: How can folks communicate with one another if a need arises? Do we have any protocols for action? What type of signage is important? How can technology serve us better? What doors can and should be locked, and when? How much will something cost? How will we measure our success? How does security fit with the mission statement of the church? How do we implement measures and remain an open and welcoming community?
  • We learned that the Boy Scout and Venture Crew are more than willing to be flexible in their room usage and use whatever space is best for the larger church.
  • Perhaps just nursery rooms could be relocated in response to young families' requests that the nursery be closer to the worship spaces.
Perhaps the best thing that arose from last Sunday morning's conversation was the forming of a group of people who want to carry the conversation further, to be intentional in discussing and developing suggestions that the Session and church can act upon. If you would like to be part of this group, please let Dave Welch know by contacting him at or calling the church office 423-764-7176. / Dave Welch
In the Pulpit
Chuck and Barb Thompson
Chuck Thompson , his wife Barb, and their three children, CJ, Sarah, and Erin, came to Bristol and First Presbyterian Church 28 years ago. Chuck is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in private practice. He is also the Director of Counseling, an Associate Professor of Psychology, and an Adjunct Professor of Religion at King University. Chuck has written four applied theology books, a novel based on the Epistle of James, seven mystery novels set in Bristol, and two Appalachian fantasy series.
Engaging Volunteers: Pledging Time and Talents
Through May 20, the Stewardship Committee is emphasizing the need for volunteers. Each Sunday, you can learn about our church's many needs and how you can help. Just drop by the chapel after one of the services. There you can let us know what skills you want to offer our church, express your volunteering interests, and pledge your time and talents. An online form for this purpose will also be available.
We need you, if you can you drive a van, deliver meals to shut-ins, answer the phone, make a list, take a message, fold bulletins, run an errand, teach Sunday School, lead a craft activity, lead a Bible study, usher, sing, play an instrument, pray, mow the lawn, pull weeds, take photos, make a movie, write a comforting note, greet worshipers, advise, create, explore, research, or wash dishes.
We are all richly blessed with abundant gifts by God's grace. The Bible teaches us that we are expected to pledge our gifts of time, talents, and treasures to God's work. This is made clear in 1 Peter 4:10: "Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God's grace in its various forms."
Either way, we hope you will take time during this season of volunteerism to cheerfully pledge your time and talent in the knowledge that you are filling an important need. / Jerry Poteat
Meeting to Elect a Trustee May 13
PCUSA seal small
Following the ONE Worship service in the sanctuary next Sunday, May 13, the congregation will meet to elect a Trustee to fulfill an unexpired two-year term. All members of FPC are encouraged to attend and cast their vote.
Welcome Our Newest Member
He may be well known to you, but now he makes it official. This past Sunday, April 29, while home on leave from the Marine Corps, Lance Corporal James E. Buck met with members of the Session and formally joined the fellowship of First Presbyterian Church as a member. Please take time to welcome him the next time he is here for a visit, perhaps as early as this September. James is the son of Dyan and Kevin Buck.
ONE Worship and Confirmation May 13
We will hold a ONE Worship service in the sanctuary next Sunday, May 13, at 10:30 to celebrate the students who have completed their two-year Confirmation Class and will become members of FPC that morning. Please join us for this joyous event!
These are the young people who will be confirmed next Sunday:
Davis Akard
Bailey Bechtold
Jon Blankenship
Zora Gross
Rachel Kent
Lily Rosser
Beckham Schiesz
If you plan to support them with a letter of encouragement, please be sure to send your message by next Friday, May 11, to Katie Arnold, Director of Student Ministries, either by email to, or by mail or hand to First Presbyterian Church, Attn.: Katie Arnold, 701 Florida Avenue, Bristol, TN 37620.
Parents' Night Out May 11
The Children's Ministries will hold a Parents' Night Out from 6:00 to 8:30 next Friday, May 11, in the Education Wing. This event is for newborns through sixth graders. Please let Lilly Osborne know the number and ages of the children to expect so that she can provide dinner and materials for all of them. To sign up, email Lilly at, call or text her at 423-383-5476, or use the Children's Ministries Facebook page.
Sharing Christ Saturday
FPC's wonderful volunteers will take nourishment and God's love to the folks at Sharing Christ Downtown Mission this Saturday, May 5. They'll spend two or three hours sharing food prepared by members of our congregation as they serve dinner Saturday evening and hand out sack lunches for Sunday. Along with scores of hungry Bristolians, we thank our loving volunteers.
Last Chance to Claim Your Lost Items Sunday
We are clearing out the items that have collected in our Lost & Found Department. If you think something you've lost may be found in our collection, please come to the Fellowship Hallway through Sunday, May 6, and look for it. After Sunday, these items will be donated to Haven of Rest in hopes of finding new homes.
Join the Care Shepherds Ministry
Come join a Care Shepherd team! The goal of this ministry is to show Christian love and care to those of our church family who are in need. You will serve with other volunteers one month at a time on a team that ministers to the needs of the congregation for that month. You will find opportunities to provide meals to those just home from the hospital, visit our shut-ins at home and in care facilities, and comfort those in distress. Five deacons (Sujean Bradley, David Ginn, Brenda Lawson, Barb Thompson, and Ann Woods) are each coordinating a team. We are now seeking volunteers to serve for a month in the period from May through December, and we won't say no to anyone who wants to sign up now for 2019! Please pick up a volunteer sign-up sheet during one of the worship services this week. Thank you!
May Mowers Ever Practice Their Métiers!
Facilities Manager Larry Connolly will facilitate the management of the church grounds May 2-5, so you will have him to thank when you gaze with approval on the lawn Sunday morning. Interim Director of Music Pat Flannagan will direct the Tiger Cat's pacing May 9-12, leading up to Confirmation Sunday.
Join the team! We welcome men and women, adults and teens. Families too: younger children can move fallen branches and debris to the curb, and a parent or elder sibling can mow. It's easy, and you can mow only once or, if you choose, up to thrice. Simply contact Randy at or 423-956-1541. If you're new to Scag mowers, he will be happy to give you a lesson on our Tiger Cat.
Wycliffe Bible Translators Banquet May 10
Pastor Jacob Ram
Members of FPC are invited to a Wycliffe Bible Translators banquet next Thursday, May 10, at the Holiday Inn in Johnson City. The doors will open at 6:30 p.m., and the program will begin at 7:00 p.m. The speaker will be Pastor Jacob Ram, who pastors a church in Botswana. Wycliffe is a worldwide Christian ministry dedicated to translating the entire Bible into the heart language of every major language group in the world. The evening's program will explain how technology is being used to speed up the process of translation, and how you can have a part in Bible translation.
We would like to encourage as many of you and your friends as possible to attend this free event. To make a reservation for dinner and the program, please call Brent Nelson at 1-866-461-0197 or 1-615-415-1432, or email The Holiday Inn is located at 101 W. Springbrook Drive.
AMEn in Concert Here Next Friday
To celebrate their rapidly approaching fifth anniversary, the Appalachian Men's Ensemble will present The Fifth Degree, a concert centered around the number 5. Come hear one of the premier choral ensembles of the region in song in our sanctuary, next Friday, May 11, at 7:30 p.m. No admission will be charged, but a donation of $10 for adults and $5 for students is suggested.
Music Notes
Sunday's music: Our anthem, "A New Commandment," is a setting of the scripture from the Gospel of John 13:34. The music was composed by noted English Renaissance
Thomas Tallis
composer Thomas Tallis (c. 1505-1585). Tallis served as a court musician for four English monarchs during a turbulent time when policies regarding religion and authority were shifting. His length of service is a testimony to two things: his creative talent and his adaptability. Probably best known for his amazing 40-part motet, Spem in Alium, Tallis also proved himself very able at composing the smaller anthems, as Sunday's musical selection demonstrates.
Organist's footnotes: Sunday's prelude is based on Hymn 529 in Glory To God, "Draw Us in the Spirit's Tether." This communion text calls attention to the inherent sacramental nature of all meals and the communal dimensions of all human interaction. The tune, UNION SEMINARY, originally composed for an anthem setting of this text, honors the institution where the composer was trained and later taught. James Biery (b. 1956) has arranged an interesting, quiet setting for organ, with the melody echoed in canon one beat later, and a fifth lower in pitch.
A former choir member of mine would have called Sunday's postlude a "green and red light special," referring to the lights on the organ that warn the organist that the crescendo pedal and full organ (sforzando) are both engaged. Rebecca Groom te Velde's (b. 1956) arrangement of LLANFAIR is both loud and fast, as most toccatas are. But to her credit, te Velde changes her patterns almost every measure, making her arrangement more challenging for the performer and, I hope, more interesting for the listener.
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 a gift made to the church in memory of:
Betty Mott (mother of Betsy Galliher): to the Office Supplies Fund from Sue Barr
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
Blaine Hunigan
Don Moneyhun
Chuck Thompson
Birthday Prayer Fellowship
May 6       Frances Emerson
May 7       Allison Brooks
May 8       Kathryn Welch
May 10     Nancy Allerton, Kendall Carter, Nancy King
May 11     Jessica Hicks, Amy Scott
May 12     Brenda Lawson, Matt Peltier
Church Calendar
Sunday, May 6
8:30 a.m.        Worship, Fellowship Hall
9:45 a.m.        Engaging Volunteers, Chapel
9:45 a.m.        Sunday School
11:00 a.m.     Worship, Sanctuary
6:00 p.m.       Student Fellowship, Youth Wing
Monday, May 7
5:30 p.m.       Adult Handbells
7:00 p.m.       Board of Deacons, Room 123
Tuesday, May 8
10:00 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, May 9
7:15 p.m.       Sanctuary Choir
7:30 p.m.       8:30 Worship Team, Fellowship Hall
Thursday, May 10
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
Friday, May 11
6:00 p.m.       Parents' Night Out, Education Building
7:30 p.m.       Appalachian Men's Ensemble, Sanctuary
Elders and Deacons of FPC
PCUSA seal small
Church Officers
Class of 2018
Class of 2019
Class of 2020
Aaron Brooks
Anna Booher
Nancy Allerton
Randy Cook
Lee Galliher
Rebecca Beck
Debbie McMillin
Pete Holler
David Hyde
Stuart Parker
Han Ong
Jordan Pennington
Chuck Thompson
Pete Stigers
Jerry Poteat
Class of 2018
Class of 2019
Class of 2020
Adam Abel
Sujean Bradley
Blake Bassett
Nancy Butterworth
George Linke
Rhonda Comer
David Ginn
Greg Roberts
Brenda Lawson
Rett Stocstill
Nate Sproles
Barbara Thompson
Ann Woods
Bill Whisnant