St. Mark's United Methodist Church | www.smumc.church
Published Thursday, December 13, 2018
St. Mark's United Methodist Church of Bloomington, Indiana is an inclusive community bringing Christ-like love, healing and hope to all. We embrace the United Methodist ideal of
Open Hearts, Open Minds and Open Doors by welcoming those of all races, cultures, faith traditions, sexual orientations, and gender identities.
In observance of the Christmas and New Year's holidays,
the St. Mark's building will be closed as follows:

Tuesday, December 25-closed
Wednesday, December 26-closed
Monday, December 31-closed
Tuesday, January 1-closed

There will be no staff members in the building and there will be no events planned at the church. In the event of a pastoral emergency, please call the church office. More information is provided in the answering machine message.
SUNDAY, DECEMBER 16
THIRD SUNDAY OF ADVENT
_____________________________   
BREAKFAST AND MORE
9:00am-10:15am (Garton Hall) 
Sharing breakfast together, live music, activity tables for children, and more.
Thank you to those who will be preparing breakfast!
ADULT SUNDAY SCHOOL 
9:15am Nomads (Room 10) 
9:15am Pilgrims (Room 13)
9:30am  Bible Banter (Room 11)
 
INFANT & TODDLER NURSERY CARE 
Infant through Three-year-old
10:15am-11:30am (Rooms 24 & 25)
Contact the church
if 9:30am childcare is needed.
 
SANCTUARY WORSHIP SERVICE
10:30am
Rev. Jimmy Moore & Rev. Mary Beth Morgan
SCRIPTURE
Matthew 1:18-25
SERMON TITLE
"People of Advent: Joseph and the Rest of the Story"

 CHILDREN AND YOUTH SUNDAY SCHOOL
10:30am-11:30am
Preschool-Kindergarten: Room 22
1st & 2nd Grade: Room 4
3rd & 4th Grade: Room 9
5th & 6th Grade: Room 3
7th-12th Grade: Youth Room 1
While classes are organized by age/grade level, families are welcome to choose a class that is a good fit for their child.
NOW THROUGH CHRISTMAS
CHRISTMAS TRAINS AT ST. MARK’S!
Rev. Robert Sharp and the Bloomington Model Railroad group has set up a Christmas Village complete with an ON 30 operating Christmas train! The village is a traditional 1950 vintage town with a winter theme. The layout is open and running in Room 12 before and after church on Sunday mornings. Other viewing times can be arranged by appointment. For more information, call or email the church office.
THIS SUNDAY, DECEMBER 16, 10:30AM
SANCTUARY WORSHIP
Many people know the story of the Nativity, how Mary and Joseph traveled to Bethlehem where Jesus was born. And from that story, they read that Joseph was a "good man." But we really don't know much more about him. He does show up, unnamed, in the story of the twelve year old Jesus who gets separated from his parents until they find him at the Temple having discussion with the leadership there. What was life like for this "good man"? What were his challenges? What were his hopes? How might this person of Advent have dealt with the "not yet" of his life...his sense of hope and grief given the unique role he had in the life of Jesus. We'll talk about this in worship on Sunday, as Mary Beth and Jimmy co-preach as sermon titled, "People of Advent: Joseph and the Rest of the Story," arising from Matthew 1:18-25. It will be an attempt at midrash, a time honored form of Jewish biblical interpretation that imaginatively attempts to fill in the gaps in the Biblical Story. Rabbi Sandy Sasso says that midrash is a way of reading the Bible with question marks rather than exclamation marks. The Chancel Choir will sing and the Bell Choir will ring, as we move through the Third Sunday of Advent. There will also be baptism for two of our young ones. We do look forward to seeing you on Sunday!
LOAVES AND FISHES FUND
Occasionally, we at St. Mark's are asked to assist with an emergency financial need. Our response to such a request primarily comes through our Loaves and Fishes Fund. This is administered by the staff either to an agency that calls seeking to help meet a need, or to an individual who asks. Usually, these are cases that have fallen through the cracks or go beyond the ability of the social help network to provide. The source of these funds is the generosity of the good people of St. Mark's, giving above and beyond their giving to the budget and capital needs of the church. We give to this fund during the monthly communion service, but offerings can be designated to the Loaves and Fishes Fund at any time.
 
Recently, and not surprisingly, we have received a number of requests, and our fund is quite low. If you are so led and are able, will you prayerfully consider giving to the Loaves and Fishes Fund? If you give by check, please write "Loaves and Fishes" in the memo line of your check, or place the check or cash in an envelope, and write "Loaves and Fishes" on that envelope.
 
As always, we are deeply grateful for the kind and faithful generosity you show so deeply.
SUNDAY, DECEMBER 16, 10AM-11:30AM
OPERATION FRIENDSHIP HOLIDAY PARTY BAKERY
Holiday parties & no time to bake? OF is selling homemade whole cakes & pies, as well as platters of cookies!! $15-20 per item.
Plan to shop the OF bake sale on December 16 and take home bakery delights for your Christmas and holiday parties! At this bake sale you can purchase whole cakes, pies, and platters of cookies! These are sure to be as delicious as the bake sale treats we all love.
NOW THROUGH CHRISTMAS EVE
BRING ITEMS FOR "MUSH" CHRISTMAS TREES
There are multiple MUSH Christmas trees at St Mark's: in the sanctuary, Garton Hall and in the Nursery School & Kindergarten Hallway. You are encouraged to bring in new Mittens, Underwear, Socks, and Hats, for children and adults in need of these items. You are welcome to hang hats and mittens (or gloves) on the trees, and place underwear and socks under the trees. Items will be donated to Monroe County United Ministries.
CHRISTMAS EVE PAGEANT ON DECEMBER 24, 5:30PM
ALL ARE WELCOME TO BE PART OF THE PAGEANT! SIGNUPS HAVE BEGUN!
It is a special ministry of our children and youth to share the story of Jesus' birth on Christmas Eve. We warmly welcome everyone to be a part of this wonderful family-friendly service!

All children & youth are invited to be a part of the Christmas Eve Pageant. There are both speaking and non-speaking parts, with roles being age appropriate and matching the interest of the child or youth. (Children younger than preschool age need to have an adult with them during the pageant.) Children and youth can also participate by greeting (handing out bulletins), sharing a piece of music or art, helping to light candles, etc. There are roles for Everyone!
 
Sign up and get a costume on Sundays before and after worship, or during the week by contacting Mary Beth Morgan ( marybethmorgan@smumc.church ) or Alayna Gray ( stmarksdcm@gmail.com ).
 
There is one rehearsal on Saturday, December 22 at 10:00am. (If you cannot be there, just let us know.) All interested children and youth can participate, including friends, neighbors and visiting relatives. Walk-ons are welcome.


CHRISTMAS PAGEANT HELP FROM ADULTS IS ALSO NEEDED!
Regardless of your skill set, the Christmas Eve Pageant needs help from adults!
Please contact Mary Beth Morgan if you can help.
BEFORE the Pageant:
  • Help children/youth choose costumes
  • Make simple costume repairs, wash or iron
  • Help with simple set-up of Sanctuary
  • Go shopping for needed items
DURING the Rehearsal and Pageant:
  • Be an adult helper for a group of pageant participants (angels, shepherds, manger animals, magi, main speaking parts, greeters, candle lighters, etc.)
  • Serve as an usher during the pageant, helping everyone find a seat.
AFTER the Pageant:
  • Help reset the Sanctuary or collect costumes.
UPCOMING@ST. MARK'S is published each month as an information resource and guide to the activities and events within and around the St. Mark's church community. Copies are distributed at the beginning of the month along with the Sunday worship bulletin or by contacting the church office. Please submit information and articles for the January edition of Upcoming@St. Mark's before Wednesday, December 19. Thank you.

Click the image to the right and read
December Upcoming@St. Mark's.

AN UPDATE & THANK-YOU
FROM THE STEWARDSHIP TEAM

As of December 4, 100 pledge cards had been returned for the 2019 Stewardship Campaign:
Promise and Possibility, totaling $412,624, which supports the operating and ministry costs of the church. Also, as of December 4, 60 pledge cards had been returned for capital improvements, totaling $67,295.

We deeply appreciate your commitment and pledges to both campaigns. If you have already returned your pledge cards, or intend to do so soon, thank you! This will help church leadership as they determine an estimated budget for next year.
We recognize that some of you may need more time for discernment regarding pledges, and are grateful for pledges received through the fall and beyond. Stewardship packets are
available in Garton Hall and in the church office. These can be returned anytime in the offering plate, to the church office or can be filled out on-line via the link on the church website ( www.smumc.church/pledge ). Thank you for your generosity in supporting the ministries and missions of St. Mark's!
BEGINNING DECEMBER 27TH
ST. MARK'S KITCHEN IMPROVEMENTS PROJECT
As you may know, a kitchen improvement project will take place after Christmas for a period of about two weeks. This project will provide necessary repairs and updating, including replacing the dishwasher which has been unusable for months. Please anticipate that the kitchen will not be in use during this time. Water in the kitchen will be turned off and construction will be taking place; do not plan to use the kitchen until the project is finished. We will announce and celebrate the completion of the kitchen improvement.

Our kitchen not only serves to resource fellowship meal opportunities for the congregation. It also is a location of missional work for groups that meet here, and for food that is prepared and taken into community. We have notified all groups which use the kitchen on a regularly scheduled basis, and we want all of the church to be aware also.
Get to know one another; 
wear a name tag, please.  
SUNDAY SCHOOL FOR CHILDREN, YOUTH, AND ADULTS
ADULT SUNDAY SCHOOL
PILGRIMS
9:15am-10:15am in Room 12
NOMADS
9:15am-10:15am in Room 10
BIBLE BANTER
9:30am-10:15am in Room 11

NURSERY CARE
10:15am-11:30am
Infant through 3-year-olds 
(Rooms 24 & 25)
Contact the church if 9:30am care is needed.

CHILDREN AND YOUTH SUNDAY SCHOOL
10:30am-11:30am
Preschool-Kindergarten:
Rm 22
1st & 2nd Grade: Rm 4
3rd & 4th Grade: Rm 9
5th & 6th Grade: Rm 3
7th-12th Grade: Youth Rm 1
While classes are organized by age/grade level, families are welcome to choose a class that is a good for for their child.

QUESTIONS ABOUT
CHILDREN'S MINISTRIES?

QUESTIONS ABOUT
YOUTH MINISTRIES?

SUNDAY, DECEMBER 30
CHILDREN'S MINISTRIES
HOLIDAY SCHEDULE CHANGE
There will be no Sunday School classes on December 30. Nursery care will be provided, starting at 10:15am. Older children are encouraged to stay in the sanctuary for worship, and Busy Bags will be available with Christmas-themed activities to keep busy
hands and minds engaged, even as they absorb the worship around them. If you have any questions, please contact Alayna Gray, Interim Coordinator of Children's Ministries.
EACH SUNDAY
SIGN IN & NAME TAGS FOR SUNDAY SCHOOL & CHILDCARE
Children attending childcare or Sunday School must be signed in and have a name tag from the table in Garton Hall. Please sign in before worship.

SUNDAY SCHOOL 2018-19 FAMILY INFORMATION FORM
At the start of each new school year, we ask families to complete the Family Information form. Paper forms are available at the Sunday School table in Garton Hall. This form should be completed each year for each child (multiple children can be entered on one form).

ADULT SUNDAY SCHOOL
BIBLE BANTER
The Bible Banter class meets in Room 11 each Sunday from 9:30-10:15am. The Scripture text for the morning's sermon is used as a discussion-starter.
We look at the passage in its larger context, a bit of Bible-writing history, and some thoughts on the morning's sermon, based on the Scripture the pastor has selected. We leave time to discuss implications of the Scripture for our own lives and delve into topics far afield of the morning's original topic. You are invited to bring some breakfast from Garton Hall into Room11 and join the conversation.

SEE GOD THROUGH THE EYES OF A CHILD
BE A PART OF CHILDREN'S OR YOUTH SUNDAY SCHOOL
Are you curious about helping with Sunday School as a teacher (in a lead or assistant role), substitute or with preparation during the week? Teachers are only asked to be in a class once a month. Contact Alayna Gray for more information!
ADULT SUNDAY SCHOOL
NOMADS
This month, the Nomads class will be discussing the short essays in the book by best-selling writer Anne Lamott, ALMOST EVERYTHING: NOTES ON HOPE. Both hilarious and profound, Lamott in this her most recent book calls for us "to rediscover the nuggets of hope and wisdom that are buried within us" now and always when uncertainty and despair appear to be overwhelming. All are welcome to join us for breakfast and lively discussions at 9:30am Sundays in Room 10, with or without having looked at the book.

ADULT SUNDAY SCHOOL
PILGRIMS
The World's Greatest Churches
Sunday, December 16
Lecture #11 "The Stave Churches of Norway"
Prof. William R. Cook, Ph.D. - State University of New York at Geneseo

 At the end of the 8th century, Vikings sailed out of Norway and began to attack Christian Western Europe (England and France) and, ultimately, sailing into the Mediterranean. 
At first these were raids, but later, various Norse peoples began to move into these raided areas and became Christians. Those who stayed in Norway were not converted to Christianity until the 11th and 12th centuries and it is in that time frame that we begin to find major churches in Norway made from wood, known as stave churches.
Currently numbering less than 30, the stave churches at one time numbered about 1,000 and were primarily located in the remote parts of Norway.

All are welcome at any point in the lecture series. Come join us in room 13 at 9:15am for this presentation and the resulting discussion.
SMALL GROUPS, EDUCATION, AND FELLOWSHIP
MEETS EACH WEDNESDAY, 1:00PM IN ROOM 10 (WILL NOT MEET WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 26)
ST. MARK'S QUILTERS & CRAFTERS
Bring your quilting or crafts to Room 10 and spend time with others who enjoy these activities. Quilters & Crafters meets each Wednesday. All skill levels are welcome and encouraged to attend.

MEETS EACH THURSDAY, 11:30AM IN ROOM 11 (WILL NOT MEET THURSDAY, DECEMBER 27)
WOMEN OF WONDER AND FAITH
A group of faithful, journeying women meeting weekly to read and discuss books on various topics of faith. We will begin a new reading after Christmas when we meet on January 3, 2019. Please join us as we move along our faith journey, collectively and individually, as well as build valuable friendships to support each other through life's many challenges and joys. Contact the facilitator, Maria Schmidt marschmi@indiana.edu , with questions and to let her know you are coming. 

MEETS EACH FRIDAY, 1:00PM, ROOM 15 AT ST. MARK'S
CONVERSATIONS ON LIFE MEN'S GROUP
The men's discussion group known as Conversations on Life, is reading and discussing the two middle sections of MERE CHRISTIANITY by C.S. Lewis. The general topics of the 17 short chapters in those sections are: "What Christians Believe" and "Christian Behavior". The group meets at 1:00pm each Friday and has moved back to room 15 at St. Mark's UMC. Visitors are always welcomed.

FIRST & THIRD FRIDAY OF EACH MONTH, 9:00AM, ROOM 4
FRIDAY, DECEMBER 7 (NO MEETING DECEMBER 21)
ST. MARK'S DAYTIME PARENTS GROUP
The Daytime Parents Group had their first meeting on Friday, November 2. You are encouraged to join other parents and children for conversation to support one another through the intense joys and challenges of raising young humans. Bring the kids! There are toys to entertain them while parents converse. Invite friends, and if it is your first time, contact Abby Brass or Whitney Sullivan for more information. No meeting on Friday before Christmas, December 21.
SUNDAY, DECEMBER 16, 3:00PM, ST. MARK'S SANCTUARY
BLOOMINGTON CHAMBER SINGERS MESSIAH SING-ALONG
Come sing-along with Bloomington Chamber Singers to Handel's MESSIAH. A limited number of musical scores are available to use. Bring your own music if you can. Admission is FREE. You are invited to bring a canned good as a contribution to the Hoosier Hills Food Bank.

MONDAY, DECEMBER 17, 7:00PM, ROOM 12
MEETS EVERY OTHER MONDAY
CHRONIC ILLNESS SUPPORT GROUP
This spiritual support group for patients facing cancer or other chronic diseases, along with family members and caregivers will focus on spiritual support with a Christian and Methodist approach. Our goal is to help each of us thrive on the days we can … and survive on the days we are not sure we can. And do all of that in faith. Meetings will take place every other Monday (with no meeting December 31). Group Facilitators will be Dr. Brandt Ludlow and Craig Stewart.

TUESDAY, DECEMBER 18, 6:30-8:30PM
PUB THEOLOGY AT AVER'S PIZZA BUFFET, 1285 S COLLEGE MALL ROAD, SUITE A
Pub Theology provides a place to relax with food and beverage and a fun group of thinking disciples to talk a little theology. On Tuesday, December 18, we will reflect on two famous sermons. The first is an Advent sermon preached by Dietrich Bonhoeffer in 1928. The second is the last Christmas sermon Dr. Martin Luther King preached before his death four months later.
You may email Jimmy Moore or the church office to request copies of the sermons, either emailed or printed. Please also contact the church office to let us know you are coming. We would love to see you!
CHRISTMAS EVE AT ST. MARK'S
MONDAY, DECEMBER 24

EARLY SERVICE WITH CANDLE LIGHTING, 3:00PM
Join us mid-afternoon at 3:00pm in the sanctuary for a service of lessons, carols, communion and candlelight.

CHRISTMAS EVE PAGEANT, 5:30PM
Plan to be here for this wonderful service for all ages! It is a special ministry of our children and youth to share the story of Jesus' birth on Christmas Eve. Children and youth will also share special music; the congregation will sing hymns; the angels will bring good news; the sheep will baa; the cows will moo; the camels will say whatever camels say; the shepherds will keep watch; the innkeeper will have no room; the magi will bring gifts. We will all welcome Mary, Joseph, Baby Jesus (and their donkey). As we end our celebration, we will light candles as we sing "Silent Night" together.

LATE CANDLELIGHT SERVICE, 11:00PM
Carols, liturgy, and the story of the very first Christmas as told in Luke's Gospel will guide us through the final hour of Christmas Eve and into Christmas morning. We will all share in the singing of hymns and light candles as we join our voices in the verses of "Silent Night."

CHRISTMAS EVE OFFERING
This year, the offering from the three Christmas Eve services will be divided evenly between The Bishop's Christmas Offering for Children and the Kitchen Fund. The Bishop's offering supports Indiana Outdoor Camp Ministries, Children and Youth Homes, and United Methodist ministries which help feed, clothe, and educate children locally and globally. The Kitchen Fund is for necessary repairs and updating, including replacing the dishwasher which has been unusable for months. Our kitchen not only serves to resource fellowship meal opportunities for the congregation. It also is a location of missional work for groups that meet here, and for food that is prepared and taken into community. We appreciate your generosity to these important
ministry causes on this Christmas Eve.
St. Mark's Staff Email
Rev. Jimmy Moore, Pastor

Alayna Gray
Interim Coordinator of Children's Ministries, stmarksdcm@gmail.com

Rodney Long, Director of Youth Ministries rodneylong@smumc.church

Aaron Comforty, Children & Youth Music aaroncomforty@smumc.church

Dennis Morgan, Head Custodian

Claire Schaffer, Administrative Assistant
Rev. Mary Beth Morgan, Pastor

Gerry Sousa, Director of Music Ministries

Natalie LeBeau, Finance Director

Sierra Roussos, Director,
St. Mark's Nursery School & Kindergarten director@smnurseryschool.org

Robin Cole, Asst. Director,
St. Mark's Nursery School & Kindergarten

Amy Weger, Office Manager,
St. Mark's Nursery School & Kindergarten
100 N. State Road 46 Bypass, Bloomington, IN 47408
Phone: 812-332-5788    Fax: 812-333-5544
100 N. State Road 46 Bypass, Bloomington, IN 47408
School Office Phone: 812-333-4007
St. Mark's United Methodist Church | www.smumc.church