Dear Friends of Jesus Christ,

We had a great spring together. Our church’s Pentecost, Jubilee, and 50 th Anniversary of the United Methodist Church celebration was a fabulous success! We’re now in the throes of summer, but there is a lot still happening at YOUR church!

Our Community Garden is thriving. Stacey Stickley-Roy, our Lay Leader, has done a great job getting it started. I’ve been out to the church property on Apple Pie Ridge Road several times to witness the progress. Just a short time ago, Mark Roy, enlisted the help of a friend with a tractor to break up sod. Meanwhile, Stacey recruited James Wood High School students to plant seedlings off-site. Then Mark and Stacey built a fence around the emerging garden. After Angie Palombi, and others, installed a weed barrier, the JW seedlings were planted. The produce will be used in a variety of ways, including providing needy people with nutritious, fresh vegetables. See Stacey’s article within this newsletter to find out how to help!

Zach Hubbard will be our ministry intern this summer and he’ll be assisting Rev. White. Zach is a student at Shenandoah University and is exploring a calling to ministry. Zach has a background in contemporary worship and media and we hope to utilize his skills in a variety of ways during the 8:30 and 11am worship services this summer. His biography is also included within this edition of First Word. We’re working on a contemporary service for July 1, 2018.

We’ve scheduled movie nights again for June, July, August and September. After a great, but exhausting week of VBS, we kicked the series off with the movie “Cars 3”. A brief contemporary service was held just prior, a pattern that we will continue through September. Some of the nights will be a “Kid’s movie with grown-ups welcome”. Others will be, “A grown-up movie, with kids welcome”. These events will be held in a variety of places including: The Gathering Place, Fellowship Hall, and our church’s Apple Pie Ridge Property (on Apple Pie Ridge Rd., across from the elementary school). “Read all about it!” in the newsletter, bulletin, the Church’s website and Facebook page. By the way, please like us on Facebook! This really helps “make known” our Christian work together at FUMC.

Finally, during the summer months, church attendance declines as people understandably go on vacation, but our church’s bills remain constant. Please keep your giving current throughout the summer months. This helps our church greatly! You may also make gifts now using the church’s website. (See how on Page 4 of this newsletter.)

I hope to see you this Sunday at the church where God’s grace and love are a constant source of energy and renewal!

Rev. White