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​Risk-Taking Mission: Meeting Blessed People...


9/23/2014 by Richard Johnson
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Have you ever wondered about certain people who are different? People who look different, act different, talk different, and have different values?

The wonderful experience of risk-taking mission and service through the outreach ministries of First Church has taught me that the more we explore and involve ourselves in the lives of others, the more...

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​Traditional vs. Contemporary


9/23/2014 by Eric Strand
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These two words often sum up the typical conversation about music in the church.  Amazingly, these words do very little to adequately describe the music, and often raise more questions than they answer.  Whose tradition?  Tradition at what point in time?  Contemporary to whom?  To what population?  Also, these words do...

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​Faith Development in Faith Travelers


9/23/2014 by Audrey Kawel
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Do your children sometimes struggle to make the best decision? Could they benefit from having time to think about their faith? 
 
Faith Travelers is a truly unique experience for children and for adults who teach and shepherd. As a teacher of Faith Travelers last year, I saw children become inspired by Jesus’ teachings and heard ...

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A Rich Tradition


9/23/2014 by Chris Hawkins
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At First Church, we have a rich tradition of actively supporting many local outreach activities. Whether by our personal involvement of time, or our generous financial gifts, over 30 local charitable organizations receive support from First Church every year.

In 2014, this tradition, enabled exclusively by our regular giving, is indeed being ...

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People come to First Church from many different places


9/23/2014 by Patsy McGillivray
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People come to First Church from many different places, looking for many different things.  What many find is an open and welcoming congregation with a passion for hospitality.  Here is one such story.
 

We joined FUMC in July 2012 after a period of church shopping in the Grand Rapids area.  What stood out about First compared
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​Compassionate Care and Renewal


9/23/2014 by Marj Timmerman
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As most of you know, I was able to take a 5-week renewal leave this summer and would like to share briefly with you some of what I experienced!

I spent the first week at Lake Junaluska, North Carolina at SoulFeast, a spiritual formation and retreat event put on by Upper Room Ministries. Set in the beautiful Smoky Mountains, I worshipped and ...

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Pastor's Message


9/23/2014 by Dr. Bob Hundley
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The church year is off and running.  We had a wonderful Homecoming Sunday on September 7 with great energy and participation.  It has been a challenge for many months to get to 227 E Fulton St because of all the road construction.  But these first two Sundays in September, over 400 people wanted to be at First Church... or they might...

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After Four Weeks Away


7/29/2014 by Dr. Bob Hundley
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Dear Friends,

It was good to be back in worship with you this past Sunday.  After four weeks away, it was good to be back, refreshed and renewed.  I look forward to the weeks and months ahead.  It’s hard to believe that fall (and fall programming) is just a few short weeks away.  This coming Sunday will be the first
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Pastor's Message: July 15, 2014


7/15/2014 by Rev. Letisha Bowman
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Greetings First Church!

Summertime always makes me think of my childhood, when school was out and slow-paced days stretched out long and full of promise.  There were hours and hours open for playing with friends, reading new books, and daydreaming.  It was wonderful…until boredom set in!  I learned early on that while doing
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Financial Snapshot


6/17/2014 by Chris Hawkins
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Here is a quick snapshot of our financial status through the end of May:


Although we have received $35,139 less revenue than planned, the largest reason for that is that we have not received the budgeted contribution from the church Legacy Fund. We will do this during the summer, and the revenue picture will come closer to budget. 

The
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Pastor's Message: June 17, 2014


6/17/2014 by Dr. Bob Hundley
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PastorDear Friends,

I’m sure that you know that Audrey (Kettle) Kawel (rhymes with ‘travel’) has joined our staff as the Director of Children’s Ministry. Audrey is a daughter of this congregation, having grown up attending many of the children’s ministries that she will now lead. She is the daughter of Betsy and Ed Kettle.
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Summer is upon us!


6/3/2014 by Chris Hawkins
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Summer is upon us! The days are long, the temperatures are finally warming, and there are actually leaves appearing on the trees! This is the time when many thoughts turn to summer vacation, and other activities that can take us away from church for a few weeks. 

Of course, we all know that the ministries at First Church don’t observe
...

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First of all... thank you!


6/3/2014 by Dr. Bob Hundley
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PastorDear Friends,

First of all … thank you! Thank you for your adaptation to one Sunday morning worship service for the summer season. We had over 350 participants in worship this past Sunday and the positive energy and enthusiasm among us can be felt. I appreciate Eric and the choir continuing to sing these first three Sundays of the summer
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Holy Week


4/15/2014 by Dr. Bob Hundley
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Dear Friends – 

‘Holy Week’ has always been one of the most important times of the year for me.  The annual spiritual journey for me is like experiencing a four movement symphony; from Palm/Passion Sunday … to Maundy Thursday … Good Friday … and finally, the celebration of Easter Sunday morning. &...

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Happy April 1st


4/1/2014 by Dr. Bob Hundley
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Happy April 1st - a day that is notorious for pranks and jokes. As I have read a little about it's history, it goes back to medieval times with it's first official reference in Chaucer's 'Canterbury Tales.'

One unlikely place to learn of 'April Fools' pranks is from Bishop's in the United Methodist Church. One of
...

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