First News
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February 21, 2020, 11:02 AM

Feb 21


 
February 21, 2020
 
Join us Wednesday, February 26 • 6:30 pm for a great
"Fat Wednesday" Pancake Dinner to raise funds for
Summer Camps and Mission for our Youth.
(This dinner follows our Ash Wednesday service.)
Be prepared to be entertained by our young people.
Bring your appetite and your check book!
 
Coming Up at FCC
A Look Ahead
Week of Compassion (giving opportunity) ~ February 23
Ash Wednesday Service ~ February 26 • 6 pm
Fat Wednesday Youth Fundraiser Pancake Dinner - 6:30 pm
Men's Retreat ~ February 28-29
Amplify Austin - March 5
(Benefits Hays County Food Bank & Hays-Caldwell Women's Center)
Youth Spring Rally - March 6-8
Saturday, March 7~ All Church Breakfast
& Painting Party • 9 am
Bobcat Build ~ Saturday, April 4
 
 
Men, HAVE YOU REGISTERED??
 
Join us at the 2020 BBA/CPA Men’s Retreat
on February 28 – 29 at the Disciple Oaks Conf. Center in Gonzales t
o worship together and participate in a discussion of this important topic.
 
• Speaker: Dr. Michael Passmore – Sr Minister, Central Christian Church, San Antonio
• Music: Joel Pereira – Worship Pastor, First Christian Church, McAllen
• Hospitality Scott Miller and the entire staff of Disciple Oaks Camp and Retreat
817 926 4687 • Call to register today!!
For Registration please check out the flyer
 
When the waters rise
Submitted by Week of Compassion
We are the Church together. 
Through your support of the Special Offering, Week of Compassion is prepared to respond immediately when there is need from a disaster.
Flooding in Eastern Oregon damaged many homes last week, as well as roads and bridges, making travel difficult. Rev. Marc Mullins of First Christian Church, Pendleton reports that the community worked together quickly to provide needed assistance to those who were displaced and to coordinate clean-up as the waters began to recede. 
Within a few days of the flooding, Pastor Mullins shared the following message with his congregation: 
 
I have just received word that five grants will be sent to the church from Week of Compassion to be distributed to five families in our congregation who have been impacted by the recent flood… I expect these grant monies to arrive next week.  
It just so happens that these next two Sundays are the days when we receive our annual special offerings during worship for Week of Compassion. This is the first time I have been impacted personally by grants from Week of Compassion. I often hear how money is distributed to victims of hurricanes, typhoons, famines, wars (resulting in refugees), etc., but this is the first time that I have had members of a congregation I serve receiving such financial support. As a result, I have decided to change my sermon for this next Sunday to reflect the blessings provided by our Week of Compassion funds. 
Meanwhile – several time zones away – residents of Southeastern Kentucky were also impacted by severe flooding.
 
In times of adversity, it helps to remember that we do not exist in isolation. We are present precisely because we are the Church together.
 
We are the Church together – at all times. When one member of our Body is hurting, we reach out with love; and when the waters rise, we are there with the presence, support, and compassion that lets others know they are not alone.
 
Note: In 2015 when we experienced two disastrous floods, First Christian Church, San Marcos received help through Week of Compassion. We are thankful for that help, and this is a way to return that help to others. Envelopes will be available on Sunday.



February 14, 2020, 3:53 PM

Feb 14


 
February 14, 2020
 
 
 
February Pot Luck~
This Sunday!!!
 
It's Italian!!
 
Bring your favorite
Italian dishes
& lots of Garlic Bread!!
 
Join us Tuesday, February 25 • 6pm for a great
"Fat Tuesday" Pancake Dinner to raise funds for
Summer Camps for our Youth.
Bring your appetite and your check book!
 
Coming Up at FCC - A Look Ahead
Fat Tuesday Youth Fundraiser Pancake Dinner
6:00 pm
Ash Wednesday ~ February 26 • 6pm
Men's Retreat ~ February 28-29
Amplify Austin (for Hays County Food Bank)- March 5
Youth Spring Rally - March 6-8
Saturday, March 7~ All Church Breakfast
& Painting Party • 9am
Bobcat Build ~ Saturday, April 4
 
 
Registration Deadline for the Spring Rally
is coming up SOON! - Sign up today!
Four of our Youth are already signed up
and ready for a great weekend.
Scholarships are available, check with Shawn
for details or sign up online.
 
Men, HAVE YOU REGISTERED??
 
Join us at the 2020 BBA/CPA Men’s Retreat
on February 28 – 29 at the Disciple Oaks Conf. Center in Gonzales t
o worship together and participate in a discussion of this important topic.
 
• Speaker: Dr. Michael Passmore – Sr Minister, Central Christian Church, San Antonio
• Music: Joel Pereira – Worship Pastor, First Christian Church, McAllen
• Hospitality Scott Miller and the entire staff of Disciple Oaks Camp and Retreat
817 926 4687 • Call to register today!!
For Registration please check out the flyer
 
If you wish to purchase a brick in honor of someone or something to be placed in the Memorial Garden,
please fill out an order form, one for each name,
attach a check and place it in the office.
An acknowledgment will be sent to you when the
brick/s arrive and are installed in the garden.
 
Each Brick is $30.00
 
The Memorial Garden is located around the Steeple of 
the original First Christian Church building
(now the Price Center in San Marcos.)
outside the front doors to the left.



January 31, 2020, 2:48 PM

Jan 31


 
January 31, 2020
 
UPDATE
ON SURVEYS, INTERVIEWS,
& CONSULTATION WITH JIM BARBER
As part of our seven-month spiritual journey to
Pray & Listen, Pray & Discern, Pray & Envision,
Pray & Prepare for the future we engaged the services of
Jim Barber, church consultant.
At the end of November, Jim provided us with a 4 page Summary Report, 13 pages under the heading Recommendations, and 19 pages of Analysis. The complete document includes an in-depth analysis of the Church Health Survey, the results of the Organizational Health Survey, and the results of a demographic study of our neighborhood showing who lives within a 20-minute drive of our facility, including their religious preferences.
For instance, we know that:
52.4% prefer direct mail advertising.
24.4% prefer traditional church music.
20.9% prefer contemporary church music.
22.2% have no musical preference and
32.4% are okay with either/both.
That 20 minute/10 mile radius includes 131,911 people.
 
Most important for us, Jim made four recommendations in his summary and followed up with thirteen pages of in-depth commentary and suggestions for implementing his recommendations.
He gave us a road map, but it’s going to be a long journey. In all categories of spiritual and organizational life we perceived ourselves to be either unhealthy or very unhealthy. We can’t heal ourselves. Praise God that in God’s triune brilliance, the Holy Spirit awaits our call through fervent prayer for the healing of our ills and God willing, the restoration of this church to unity, harmony, and greater strength.
The four recommendations are:
1.     First Christian Church should take the time to develop greater Senior Staff and Board unity.
2.    When the Senior Staff and Board have consensus about the urgent need for change and what future steps will be taken,
they should invite the congregation to a series of at least two
Town Hall Meetings.
3.    After a reasonable amount of time during which the congregation has had time to participate in Town Hall Meetings, the Senior Staff and Board should then work on implementing a list of Early Wins.
4.    Simultaneous with the Early Wins, the Senior Staff and Board should conduct a discipline of strategic ministry planning facilitated by someone capable of doing so.
We have sixteen years of getting weaker and weaker as a church and a Church Doctor has given us a prescription that could lead us toward health, God willing, and the People willing. We could enter a season of revitalization. Many churches across the country are doing that.
A church revitalization is usually a 3 to 5-year process. Patience
and fortitude are elements in the process. There are no quick fixes.
It often gets worse before it gets better.
 
Good News follows:
Given the emphasis on the long road ahead we should also observe all that continues to be done now: 
  • During the year 2018 our total Sunday attendance averaged 95 women, men, children, and teenagers. 
  • In 2019 we averaged 95 indicating the possibility that we have plateaued and the decline has halted. 
  • In the month of January 2020 our average attendance was 103.5. 
  • In January we welcomed a young couple as new members and two who are attending our Wednesday night youth group expressed a desire to be baptized. Can we all say, “Yea God.”
  • The board and staff are meeting regularly on the first and third Thursdays of the month to work on recommendation number one. Our current meetings are focused on a “Roadmap to Unity.”
  • Our youth meetings on Wednesdays are growing, and please see the article on the Youth United Retreat last weekend.
  • We have a growing number of children in Children’s Church.
  • Our people continue to minister to the personal needs of members.
  • We continue to serve the students and staff of Mendez Elementary. 
  • We are making plans for this year’s Stations of the Cross, and other calendar items.
  • We are beginning training for a new, fully comprehensive children/youth program uniting the church and parents called “Orange.”
 
We pledge to provide updates.
We ask you to pledge prayer and patience.
 
Youth United Weekend Update
The youth attended Youth United this past weekend where they talked about frequency! It was an ecumenical event with youth from FBC, FCC, The Heart, Solid Rock & Promiseland all in attendance. They were asked to think about what they tune into and how often they tune into it. That what we tune into is what we will turn into & that we need to let His word be louder than the world!!
They learned about Daniel and remaining true to God in struggles and being faithful to what He asks us to do.
 
They were asked ‘when was the last time you were around
someone and made them feel like they were closer to Jesus because of who you are?’ This led to a great discussion.
I encourage you to think about it!
 
The scripture for the weekend was
1 Chronicles 16:11 -
Look to the Lord and his strength; seek his face always
 
The weekend resulted in 2 kiddos wanting to be baptized!
Lord, even as we enjoy the Super Bowl Football game, help up be mindful of those who are without
a bowl of soup to eat.
 
Please bring any type of canned
soup to FCC this Sunday. Our contributions will be delivered to
the Food Bank.
 
FEBRUARY
 
Kate Marley • February 2
Tony Rash • February 3
Mildred Scott • February 4
Sydney Morris • February 4
Brenna Eliaz • February 5
Claire Eliaz • February 5
Peyton Crabill • February 11
Dale Fowler • February 11
Wayne Fowler • February 12
Kelly Casparis • February 13
Gina Pruett • February 13
Desiree Richardson • February 17
Ashley Ralph • February 19
Katy Clayton • February 21
Barrie Breed • February 23
Martin Briceno • February 23
Mary Olenick • February 24
Charles Scott • February 24
Clinton Sutphen • February 25
Sierra Richardson • February 26
Chris Carson • February 27
Sawyer Mann • February 27
 
ANNIVERSARIES
Beth & Vickie Judkins-Mickloas • February 7
Britney & Tom Richey • February 15
Joy & David Pardo • February 28
 
BBA/CPA Disciples Men's Retreat 2020
"Did You Ever Wonder?"
 
Dr Passmore, with humor and serious reflection, moving beyond traditional wisdom, hopes to free the people of the church to allow themselves to freely wonder at the mystery of God in life. The concept of wonder, as defined in the dictionary, includes mind and soul, theology and philosophy. Wonder: “something or someone that is very surprising, beautiful, amazing, etc.: a feeling caused by seeing something that is very surprising or hard to believe.” Wunder is the German word, it means “miracle, mystery, prodigy of nature, natural wonder; wonders of nature.
- - - -
Join us at the 2020 BBA/CPA Men’s Retreat on February 28 – 29 at the Disciple Oaks Conf. Center in Gonzales to worship together and participate in a discussion of this important topic.
 
• Speaker: Dr. Michael Passmore – Sr Minister, Central Christian Church, San Antonio
• Music: Joel Pereira – Worship Pastor, First Christian Church, McAllen
• Hospitality Scott Miller and the entire staff of Disciple Oaks Camp and Retreat
 
For Registration please check out the flyer
 
If you wish to purchase a brick in honor of someone or something to be placed in the Memorial Garden,
please fill out an order form, one for each name,
attach a check and place it in the office.
An acknowledgment will be sent to you when the
brick/s arrive and are installed in the garden.
 
Each Brick is $30.00
 
The Memorial Garden is located around the Steeple of 
the original First Christian Church building
(now the Price Center in San Marcos.)
outside the front doors to the left.
 
 



January 24, 2020, 4:11 PM

Jan 24


 
January 24, 2020
 
The Tyranny of Trivia 
by Mike Yaconelli
 
There is something wrong with the organized church. You know it.
I know it. We all see that something is wrong—drastically wrong. Just one semi-close look at the organized church---with its waning influence and its cultural impotence---tells us that something
has gone awry. But, the questions is, what has gone awry?
What is wrong?
I think I know.
The problem with the Church today is not corruption. It is not the institutionalism. No, the problem is far more serious than something like the minister running away with the organist. The problem is pettiness. Blatant pettiness.
Visit any local church board meeting, and you will be immediately shocked by the sheer abundance of pettiness. The flower committee chairman has decided to quit because someone didn’t check with her before they put flowers on the altar last Sunday. The Chairman of the Board is angry because a meeting was held-without his knowledge. One of the elders is upset with the youth director because the youth director wants to take the church youth group to a secular concert. The women’s kitchen committee is up in arms because, at the last youth meeting (which mushroomed from 15 kids to 90 kids in six months), the kids took some sugar from the kitchen. The janitor is threatening to quit because the youth group played a game on the grass over the weekend, and now the lawn needs extra work.
I can understand each and every one of the gripes listed above. I also understand that the same general argument is always made for each one of these gripes.
“If you don’t have order, you have chaos. It sounds like a little thing, but if everyone was allowed to__________, think what that would mean.” Ah, yes, think what it would mean.
What would it mean? Probably nothing. And yet, in every church in this country, boards, ministers, and church members—in the name of “what would this mean?” - - are running around trying to answer that very question. In other words, churches are so preoccupied with the petty, they can’t spend the time required to do what does matter.
So, I would like to say that what people in church leadership are apparently having a difficult time saying today: There is no excuse for pettiness in the Church. Pettiness should have no place at all in any church for any reason.
Petty people are ugly people. They are people who have lost their vision. They are people who have turned their eyes away from what matters and focused, instead, on what doesn’t matter. The result is that the rest of us are immobilized by their obsession with the insignificant. It is time to be rid of pettiness.
It is time the Church refused to be victimized by petty people. It is time the Church stopped ignoring pettiness. It is time the Church quit pretending that pettiness doesn’t matter.
Pettiness is a cancer that has been allowed to go undetected; a molehill that has been allowed to become a mountain. Pettiness has become a serious disease in the Church of Jesus Christ—a disease which continues to result in terminal cases of discord, disruption, and destruction. Petty people are dangerous people because they appear to be only a nuisance instead of what they really are—a health hazard.
The most basic result of the presence of Jesus Christ in our lives is our deliverance from the sin of pettiness. It really is true that, in Jesus, we are freed from the bondage of the insignificant and let loose from the tyranny of the trivial.
 
Mike Yaconelli (July 24, 1942 – October 30, 2003) was a writer, theologian, church leader and satirist. Co-Founder of Youth Specialties, a training organization for Christian youth leaders, and The Wittenburg Door (sometimes just The Door), a satirical magazine, Yaconelli was also the pastor of a small church in Yreka, California - "the slowest growing church in America" as he called it. He and wife Karla used to share their time between Yreka and the Youth Specialties offices in El Cajon, California.
As well as his contributions to The Wittenburg Door, Yaconelli also wrote a number of books for youth leaders, and was a well received Christian  conference speaker. He was a regular at the Greenbelt festival in the UK.
On his last visit to Greenbelt, he said:
"If I were to have a heart attack right at this moment, I hope I would have just enough air in my lungs and just enough strength in me to utter one last sentence as I fell to the floor: "What a ride!" My life has been up and down, careening left then right, full of mistakes and bad decisions, and if I died right now, even though I would love to live longer, I could say from the depths of my soul, "What a ride!"
Mike was killed in an automobile accident in 2003.
 
Beginning in February our children, birth through 5th grade, will gather in the Fellowship Hall at 10:20 for a snack time and then proceed to their Bible study time in Children’s Church.
They will no longer be dismissed from the sanctuary.
Our reasons for this are child-centered.
 
  • More Bible study time for the children -The children have not been able to complete their study time in 40-45 min on Sunday. 
This is their only Bible study time and as the worship service is
only an hour, that time has shortened.
  • Greeting, informing guest parents -Parents of visitors will be greeted as they enter by our trained welcoming team and a member of the children’s team and informed of the options for their children. Parents will be able to visit the area where their children will be, hear more about our children’s ministry directly from Gael Thompson, pastor of family life. The parents will then be escorted back to the sanctuary.
  • Obtaining important information for child safety -
This will allow us to collect important information to
better serve their children (allergies, etc.) and to get a
contact number should anything occur during that hour
that requires parental help. This is important for their
safety and to satisfy state childcare regulations.
Feel free to see and visit with our children on Sundays during the fellowship time of 10-10:30. You may also volunteer to work with our children on Sunday mornings. 
 
WELCOME
We are so happy to welcome Kate Marley & Will Jones as members of First Christian Church.
 
When: January 24-26
What: an in-town ecumenical weekend retreat designed to
help middle school and high school students connect with
God and grow in their relationship with Him
Theme: Frequency and the challenge is to get the students to be in the word/spend time with God every single day
Where: We will be staying at FCC lock-in style again this year and traveling back & forth to FBC for the event.
Cost: $50. There are scholarships available so please let us know if you need one 
Registration: please register here & then let me know
once you have registered
 
 



January 17, 2020, 2:06 PM

Jan 17


 
January 17, 2020
 
Shane Claiborne in Loving the Church Back to Life, writes: "Just as we critique the worst of the church,
we should also celebrate her at her best. We need to mine the fields of church history and find the treasures, the gems. We need to celebrate the best that each tradition can bring - I want the fire of the Pentecostals, the love of Scripture of the Lutherans, the political imaginations of the Anabaptists, the roots of the Orthodox, the mystery of the Catholics, and the zeal of the Evangelicals." 
 
During our Sunday Celebration this week we will acknowledge and pray for our 2020 Elders & Deacons, including elders, deacons, junior deacons, and trustees.
Please try to be present if you can.
 
Souper Sunday - THIS Sunday!!
3rd Sunday Potluck
Please bring SOUP, sides for SOUP, bread for SOUP
or dessert! See you on the 19th for SOUP!
 
What: an in-town ecumenical weekend retreat designed to
help middle school and high school students connect with
God and grow in their relationship with Him
Theme: Frequency and the challenge is to get the students to be in the word/spend time with God every single day
Where: We will be staying at FCC lock-in style again this year and traveling back & forth to FBC for the event.
Cost: $50. There are scholarships available so please let us know if you need one 
Registration: please register here & then let me know
once you have registered

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