August 8, 2020

Please Remember - this Sunday, August 9th at 9:00 AM we will worship together at the Bandshell in Memorial Park!

Bring a lawn chair, shade umbrella and masks. Hand sanitizer will be available. We will practice social distancing. Sunday school classes may meet following the service as will First Lights and Illuminate Youth Ministry. A parents group facilitated by Stephanie Byers to discuss helping children and youth in a time of COVID-19.
We will continue to worship in the park, weather permitting through the end of October or until we are able to safely return to 225 South Second Street.

We continue to live stream worship from the park. You can watch the service live on our YouTube channel here or by going to our website at www.firstonsecond.org. and clicking on the “Watch Us Live…” button.
If the stream stops, wait 10 seconds and refresh the page. You may need to repeat that process but usually you will be able to get back on the stream.
Here is the order of worship for Sunday:

August 9 worship order for eblast

 

Thank you for your faithful giving to the Lord and His work through First UM Church. Your generosity is critically important for accomplishing what we believe God is calling us to do through the pandemic and beyond. There are three ways for you to give to Christ through First Church:
You can mail your checks through the postal system to First UM Church, 225 South Second Street, Chambersburg, PA 17201
You can go online at www.Firstonsecond.org and click on the word GIVE in the upper right-hand corner and follow the instructions.
We will take an offering at the park.
Your generous gift is greatly appreciated.

First Lights Children’s Ministry
Check out all the cool stuff on our website or our Facebook page.

August 23rd is Back to School Blessing and Promotion Sunday. We will celebrate kids, students and teachers.

Illuminate Youth Ministry
We continue to meet online for virtual youth group and for small groups on zoom.
August 7-8, we are excited to be together for a campout. For more info on either of these events, please contact Collin.
In our virtual youth group videos this summer, and in our Sunday devotions, we have been sharing lessons that explore Jesus' sermon on the Mount. As life continues to throw uncertainties and frustrations at us, it is important for us to hold on to the encouragements and teachings of Jesus. This message shared in Matthew 5-7 holds truth that is so applicable to us as Christians during this time, in how to interact with others and how to grow in our relationship with God. We will continue to look at segments from this passage of scripture through August, and we hope you'll join us online!

Hungry Hearts
continues to provide food to an average of 125 families every week.

Loss of a Spouse
You have begun a journey we know you did not want. We are sorry for your loss and want to come alongside you on this journey of grief. Our desire is to help you process your grief and think about what life after the loss of your spouse might look like. Please use parking lot and entrance behind First UM Church off W. Washington St.

Monday August 10, 2020 at 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
At First United Methodist Church
225 South Second St. Chambersburg
Please register by
calling 717-263-8491 ext.207

Special Note!

Pastor Steve’s First Church email is pastor4fumc@gmail.com. Someone has added the number “1” to change it to “pastor4fumc1@gmail.com”. These emails are NOT from Pastor Steve. This has happened before and when the recipient responds, the culprit asks for gift cards or money. Pastor Steve will never email anyone directly asking for donations having nothing to do with First UM Church. Please delete these false emails if you should receive one.

July 24, 2020

Grace and peace to you in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior!

This Sunday, July 26th we will live stream worship one again from the sanctuary. We continue to remain outside the building. You can watch the service live on our YouTube channel here: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCmSGX-RPkXNSn0xDGKsjZ5Q or by going to our website at www.firstonsecond.org. and clicking on the “Watch Us Live…” button.
You will find the order of worship for Sunday here: http://firstonsecond.org/2020/07/24/worship-order-for-july-26-2020/
Scrolling to the bottom of the order will allow you to download for printing if you wish. To become familiar with the opening praise songs, go to the following YouTube videos: “Even If” https://youtu.be/B6fA35Ved-Y and “Yes and Amen” https://youtu.be/kkHo70DeiMM

We have some good news to share! Beginning Sunday, August 2nd at 9:00 AM We will worship together in one physical location at the Bandshell in Memorial Park!

Bring a lawn chair and shade umbrella and masks. Hand sanitizer will be available. We will be setting up pop-up tents for shade also. We will continue to need to practice social distancing.

Sunday school classes can meet preceding or following the service. First Lights and Illuminate Youth Ministry will meet after the service in the park! A group facilitated by Stephanie Byers for Parents of Youth and Children to talk about issues surrounding helping children and youth in a time of COVID-19 will meet during the Children and Youth Ministry time.

We will continue to worship in the park, weather permitting through the end of October or until we are able to safely return to 225 South Second Street.

Thank you for your faithful giving to the Lord and His work through First UM Church. Your generosity is critically important for accomplishing what we believe God is calling us to do through the pandemic and beyond. There are two ways for you to give to Christ through First Church:
1. You can mail your checks through the postal system to First UM Church, 225 South Second Street, Chambersburg, PA 17201
2. You can go online at www.Firstonsecond.org and click on the word GIVE in the upper right-hand corner and follow the instructions.
Your generous gift will be greatly appreciated as we are currently experiencing a shortfall in our regular contributions due to the pandemic.

Please pray for our various ministries and outreaches which are ongoing via Zoom and YouTube such as:

First Lights Children’s Ministry Check out all the cool stuff on our website;  or our Facebook page:

Illuminate Youth Ministry. Here is a word from Collin:
A quick update from Illuminate Youth Ministries:
When we first made our summer schedule available at the end of May, we had no idea what to expect for summer gatherings. Thankfully, we have been able to gather as small groups in person on several occasions, and those moments have been personal highlights of Collin's summer.
We continue to meet online for virtual youth group and for small groups on zoom. God has graciously given us ways to connect through this trying time!
And guess what!? We have more in person connection coming soon!! On Wednesday August 5, we will be meeting at Dr. Jim Hurley's home for a pool party. We'll enjoy some food, some outdoor games, swimming, and fellowship. That following weekend, August 7-8, we are excited to be together for a campout. It certainly won't be the same as our usual summer camping experiences, but we still expect to have a FANTASTIC time with each other!! For more info on either of these events, please contact Collin. He also would appreciate RSVPs for both of these events by Sunday, August 2.
Speaking of August 2, we are excited to share that we are expecting to host youth Sunday School outdoors following our 9:00 services at the Band Shell in Memorial Park, which start on August 2. This Sunday school will run for 30-45 minutes immediately following the conclusion of our worship service. More details will come soon!
In our virtual youth group videos this summer, and in our Sunday devotions, we have been sharing lessons that explore Jesus' sermon on the Mount. As life continues to throw uncertainties and frustrations at us, it is important for us to hold on to the encouragements and teachings of Jesus. This message shared in Matthew 5-7 holds truth that is so applicable to us as Christians during this time, in how to interact with others and how to grow in our relationship with God. We will continue to look at segments from this passage of scripture through August, and we hope you'll join us online!
We're grateful for all of your continued support and participation in the youth ministry. Because of you students, parents, small group leaders, and everyone in the congregation, we have been able to continue to find ways to meet over the last 4 months. We know that our students have been able to experience connection and growing relationships within the church, and we are excited to continue building on that as we move forward in faith, hope, and love.

Hungry Hearts continues to provide food to an average of 125 families every week.

First is offering these support group events to help people going through loss:

Loss of a Spouse
You have begun a journey we know you did not want. We are sorry for your loss and want to come alongside you on this journey of grief. Our desire is to help you process your grief and think about what life after the loss of your spouse might look like.
Registrations would be helpful.
Please use parking lot and entrance behind First UM Church off
W. Washington St.
Monday August 10, 2020 at 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
At First United Methodist Church
225 South Second St. Chambersburg
Please register by email –parishvisitorfumc@gmail.com
or calling 717-263-8491 ext.207

GriefShare
You have begun a journey we know you did not want. We are sorry for your loss, and want to come alongside you on this journey of grief. Our desire is to help you process your grief and think about what life after your loss might look like. Registrations would be helpful.
(You can view a GriefShare video at First’s YouTube channel. The link is available above)
Please use parking lot and entrance behind First UM Church off W. Washington St.
Monday August 17, 2020 at 1:00 – 3:00 p.m.
At First United Methodist Church
225 South Second St.
You can also join us online. Please register by email at parishvisistorfumc@gmail.com
Or Call 717-263-8491 ext. 207

New Guidelines Issued for Gatherings

Worship with us online at home!

With new directive from the governor’s office to limit indoor gatherings to 25 people or less, we will not be able to be together in church this Sunday July 19, 2020. We can worship together from our homes!

Click here to download the order of worship and follow along.

Watch us on our youtube channel at 10am Sunday!

July 17, 2020

In Habakkuk 3:17 and 18 we read – “Even though the fig trees have no blossoms, and there are no grapes on the vines; even though the olive crop fails, and the fields lie empty and barren; even though the flocks die in the fields, and the cattle barns are empty,18 yet I will rejoice in the Lord! I will be joyful in the God of my salvation!”

Habakkuk expresses an amazing attitude of joy in the Lord during loss and failure. Some might call it naïve; a denial of reality. But it shows a depth of relational faith in God any believer in Christ would pray to have. Difficulties, loss, grief, discouragements and uncertainty are not things from which we are immune. Isn’t good to know that even during such times God’s people have experienced joy in their relationship with the Lord through it all?

With new directive from the governor’s office to limit indoor gatherings to 25 people or less, we are experiencing the loss of something that had just returned to us and had sparked a sense of hope for new normal. I want to encourage us to determine within ourselves not to allow this setback to take our joy in Christ!

While we will not be in our building for this Sunday’s worship service, we will be together in worship as Faith Church through our live stream. The service will be formatted just as if we were all present physically together, but we can participate in it from our own homes. I am told that some of First’s folks will be gathering in each other’s homes to watch the livestream together at 10 AM on Sunday! That sounds awesome to me.

You can watch the live stream via YouTube by clicking on this link on Sunday morning:
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCmSGX-RPkXNSn0xDGKsjZ5Q Once you are on the church’s channel please click subscribe. This link: http://firstonsecond.org/watch takes you to the live stream imbedded in our website.

Click HERE to open the order of worship for Sunday. You can download and print it to refer to as you watch the stream. It has the song and hymn lyrics, scriptures and readings we will use.

I have been enjoying meeting many of you in person over these past 2 weeks, and will continue to be meeting many more of you in other formats such as zoom or over the phone. Please reach out to those who do not have email or internet access and those who may live alone. Ask how they are doing and see if you can help them in some way in Christ’s name. We will be sending monthly or bi-monthly newsletters via the postal system to keep everyone informed about what is happening at First. Those newsletters will also be available on-line. Please do not hesitate to call me for any reason, even simply introducing yourself to me. My cell number is 717-873-6626.

God bless you and keep you in His loving care through Jesus Christ our Lord!
Pastor Steve

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First Lights:

This week’s bottom line for kids in First Lights Children’s Ministry is ‘Knowing Jesus changes the way you see your problems’. I can’t help but think of how the lesson applies to all of us at this point. We are going through some pretty difficult stuff. And there is no getting around it; some of it is just plain hard. But when we are able to see these moments with a new perspective—when we believe that Jesus is with us and that He will never leave us—it gives us hope to see our way through our problems. It doesn’t mean that it’s going to be easy, but it does mean that we won’t be alone.
You can watch our virtual KidMin experiences on Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/1stlights
and on our website – https://www.firstlights.org/parentnetwork

July 10, 2020

First United Weekly Email

Good Day,

This Sunday is our second back in the building, and I need to remind everyone of some important things to do and to refrain from doing to lower the risk of COVID spreading as we gather in worship. While some areas of society are opening up, we still need to continue observing the CDC protocols when we gather.

If you are ill or not feeling well, please stay safe at home and participate in worship through our YouTube channel here. This link takes you directly to our YouTube page and the live stream. Once you’re on the YouTube page please subscribe so you will be notified when new content is uploaded.

It is essential that you wear a mask in the building.
On entering the building please use the hand sanitizer offered to you.
Please practice social distancing with people who are not members of household. Six feet (2 arms lengths) is the prescribed distance between people. This is difficult to remember when we are with people who we care about but, it is important not to hug, shake hands or sit too close.
Please do not sing. I feel like one of the Pharisees in Luke 19 who demanded Jesus to stop his disciples from shouting his praise and Jesus replied, “if they keep quiet, the stones will cry out.” However, there is rising evidence that infection spreads in churches where singing is taking place, even with masking. This is due to the increased air pressure of singing, forcing particulates out the sides, top and bottom of the mask. Clapping or lifting your hands are biblical directives for worshipping God (Psalm 134:2, Psalm 47:1) Humming is fine. There are still ways of expressing your love for the Lord in worship without singing, difficult and strange as it seems. The Lord understands and receives the worship of our hearts.
Please only enter the building through the 2nd Street entrance or through the alley entrance off the parking area. We are not using the Lobby Entrance off the parking lot.

This Sunday in worship we will continue to look at the role of Faith in our lives focusing on the personal nature of Christian faith. Jesus said in Revelation 3:20 “Look! I stand at the door and knock. If you hear my voice and open the door, I will come in, and we will share a meal together as friends.” NLT. How do we open the door to Jesus?

Additional Information:
FUMC loves to see families in worship together! To make the most of our current circumstances this summer, First Lights Children's Ministry will be offering an extended children's moment during Pastor Steve's sermon.

How it will work:
Before the sermon, Pastor Steve will invite kids to go with Brianna.
Brianna and the kids will go out onto the playground through the preschool classroom.
KIds (over age 2) will need to wear masks and we will continue to social distance on the grass, under a canopy on the playground.
We will not be playing on the playground equipment.
Kids will have a short lesson/activity (no contact).
Kids will wash hands and return to the sanctuary at the end of the sermon.
This is completely optional for parents.

Remember that if you are still only comfortable staying at home, we have The Sunday Show for kids on our First Lights youtube channel.

We are collecting new boxes of crayons for Mission Central. Any boxes sized 6-24 count will be accepted. Donation bins are at the front entrances where you enter for service and you can simply drop them in the bins. Thank you!

A Funeral service will be held this Tuesday, July 14th at 7:00 PM in the sanctuary for Grace Pace. Visitation will be from 1 – 4 PM and 6- 7 PM in the sanctuary overflow. Please enter and exit by the 2nd Street and alley side door entrances. Please remember to mask and social distance inside the building.

July 3, 2020

"Behold, he whose soul is not upright in him shall fail, but the righteous shall live by his faith."

Habakkuk 2:4

Greetings in the wonderful name of Jesus Christ. My name is Steven Livermore and I am the newly appointed pastor of First United Methodist Church in Chambersburg. These are times where we are learning to live by our faith. Our faith in the Lord is vitally important now as it always has been for believers. In John 6:28 and 29 Jesus responded to a question. "Then they said to him, “What must we do, to be doing the works of God?” Jesus answered them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in him whom he has sent.” God's work has always been about faith and our shared faith draws us together in His presence in worship.

I am excited to share First Church's first Sunday back this Sunday, July 5th at 10:00 AM in the sanctuary AND we will be LIVE STREAMING the service on the website in real time. Below is the protocol you are asked to observe for the health and safety of everyone as we gather for worship. Please read it carefully and practice it as we gather.

FUMC Protocol for Re-entering the building

I look forward to meeting some of you Sunday and, others of you staying home and worshipping with us via live stream, at a later date. Please see my personal video message to all of you below.

God bless you and fill you with faith in Christ!

Pastor Steve

A Special Video Message from Pastor Steve

June 12, 2020

A Message From Pastor Cathy

Changes Ahead!

As our Governor has now hit the reset button for Franklin County to move to green on Friday, June 19th, here's some updates for the journey ahead.

Staff and Leadership have been working on a plan of transition. We have decided that while we are eager to engage in worship onsite, as our Pastors are in transition, we are reopening at First UMC on Sunday, July 5th.  A survey will be coming out this coming week and we ask that EVERYONE fills it out to determine what our opening schedule will look like. As social distancing and other protocols are still required, we need a count of how many persons are still going to be worshipping at home online, and how many are ready to be back onsite. Your timely response to the survey will be really helpful.

Second, Leadership will be making the decision on when to activate the keycards and open access to the building.

Third, many of our groups are already meeting face to face.However, due to the need to make sure that areas are sanitized, we ask that you still connect with the church office if you are planning on using a room at the church for any purpose. This ensures that every area is sanitized and should we have an exposure to covid19, we will be able to contact others who may have used the room, or been present.

So let's all celebrate and stay healthy! Exile is just about over and we can soon enjoy the physical bonds of fellowship.

As we transition (again!), let me just offer a word of gratitude to the staff and leadership of First UMC who have done a tremendous job in challenging circumstances. I know that many of you have been very grateful for the worship experiences. The staff has worked very hard to keep us connected in this season. Please be sure to thank them and give them encouragement! And please be patient and supportive of the protocols which will be in place to keep us safe on this journey.  Thanks!

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Our mission in Haiti is still very much in operation. This coming Thursday, June 18th we will have our next Haitian MIssion Update for donors and anyone who is interested online.  Everyone is welcome to come and hear the latest updates on Haiti. Pastor Steve has been working with us on this and all other ministries of the church, and the mission in Haiti will continue. If you want to join us to find out the latest news in Haiti contact us for the invitation.

Thanks for your support of our kids in Haiti!
____

Transition News

Rev. Steve Livermore has been in and among us for the past couple months, meeting one on one with Leadership Team and staff, and spending time with Pastor Cathy learning the ministries of First UMC. Pastor Cathy's last service is Sunday, June 21st, and she will be offering online communion. Pastor Steve will be starting in the building! with you on Sunday, July 5th. Please keep both the Livermore and Boileau families in prayer as we transition families, homes, ministries, in the added challenges of the pandemic. SPRC will be in contact with more info on plans to welcome the Livermore family.

From now until July 1, if you have a pastoral need please contact Gail Vaughn or one of our retired pastors.  Once Pastor Steve begins on July 1, he will be using the same email as Pastor Cathy (pastor4fumc@gmail.com) and will be receiving calls at the office on extension 210.

Thanks for being a supportive presence to both pastors on this journey!

A Message from SPRC

It's Not a Goodbye; It's a See-You-Later

A Farewell Event for the Boileaus

Greetings, FUMC Family,

As we prepare for Pastor Cathy's departure, we wanted to alert you of an opportunity to participate in a "drive-by farewell" celebration for the Boileau family on June 14th. Please read the details below carefully so that we can ensure a safe, meaningful event for all in a timely fashion.

On Sunday, June 14th, Staff-Parish is inviting FUMC attendees to participate in a "drive-by farewell" located at the church at 2:00 p.m. We would like for cars to begin arriving at 1:30 p.m. so that ushers can organize cars, allowing the celebration to begin promptly at 2:00 p.m. As you arrive, please park in the church parking lots. Cars will be directed by ushers, one at a time in an efficient manner, to drive under the canopy from the direction of the alley. As each car passes through the canopy area, you will have the opportunity to say a brief goodbye to Pastor Cathy and Mike and leave a card or gift with them as you wish. Cars will exit the area onto Washington Street. As one car leaves, ushers will direct the next car to pull up, allowing for a continuous flow.

We hope that you will join us in this farewell celebration. We appreciate your flexibility and understanding as we work through this transition in creative ways in order to keep everyone safe. If you are unable to attend the "drive-by farewell" and still wish to extend a good-bye to Pastor Cathy and Mike, you are welcome to send a card to the church via mail and we will ensure that the cards get forwarded to the Boileau family.

Blessings,
Staff-Parish Committee

May 8, 2020

Being the Church

Weekly Email from Pastor Cathy

Women’s Connect

In April, Women’s Connect gathered online for tea. 17 women joined in a Zoom meeting for scripture, worship, prayer, fellowship, and tea! We are planning another virtual Zoom gathering for Saturday, May 16, from 9:30-10:30 am. We will be sending an email invite with a link to join closer to the date. Looking forward to “seeing” everyone on Zoom until we can safely meet in person again. The theme will be: “Portrait of a Godly Lady”

If you would like an invite to their next function, email Robin Barrick raad04@comcast.net or Paula Hepfer at sphepfer@yahoo.com.

Men’s Bible Study - 6:30 am Wednesdays on Zoom

Our Wednesday morning Men’s Group continues to meet at 6:30 a.m. A time of men joining together for bible study, conversation, and prayer. Guys, if you want to plug in email John Hostetler at johnhostetler20@gmail.com.

Grief Share

Our ministry to those who have experienced loss continues to meet online on Mondays. If you are interested in joining, please contact Gail Vaughn at parishvisitorfumc@gmail.com.

Need A Pastoral Call? Have a Hospitalization? Need Prayer?

As staff is only in the building on a rotating basis, if you or anyone in your family is sick or not doing well, please contact us at parishvisitorfumc@gmail.com. If you would like to be included in the daily prayer list, please call me at 717-860-9307. Thanks for helping us stay connected!

Gail Vaughn

Director of Congregational Care

Exciting News From Our Youth Ministry

Every Wednesday night up to 100+ people gather online to watch Illuminate YouTube videos, and 20+ youth break into live sessions and zoom small groups. We are meeting every Friday on zoom from 7-9 with the youth for games, a devotional, and connecting!

Celebrating Our Graduates Sunday, May 31

To all our graduates (high school and college), we know this has been a difficult spring for you with many ups and downs! Not the senior semester we were hoping for! Nonetheless, First UMC wants to celebrate with you! (so that part is not missing!)What we need from you:

Picture or Video (with following information in the video) of graduating student to Collin Moyer at xcultureyouth@gmail.com by Wednesday, May 27th (It would be great to have them send me a video recording themselves sharing the following information, but if they just send a picture and text, that would be okay)

2. Full Name

3. Where are you graduating from

4. (If applicable) Degree and Major

5. Current plan for next year

6. Who would you like to thank

Blessings and love on your journey!

Hungry Hearts – Shine!

Our community ministry continues to be a much needed and appreciated way of walking with our neighbors. We are currently giving about 500 grocery bags worth of food a week, when one considers the additional food given through our food bank and vendors. A recent study revealed 41% of American households are currently reporting difficulty paying utilities, rent, or food. We continue to hear stories from persons new to Hungry Hearts, saying they had jobs but now are laid off.

Recently, Hungry Hearts partnered with a company, who usually supplies the school systems with pizzas and now is left with thousands of pizza. Hungry Hearts was able to partner with and purchase a number of pizzas, which were joyfully received by our guests, and help a small business as well. Our Thursday night meals are given out with no leftovers – averaging about 130 every Thursday night. We also, through generous donations, have been able to continue the grab and go breakfasts Sunday morning at 10 am which offer 100 breakfasts to our neighbors, and support a local restaurant.

First Lights Children’s Ministry Live at 6 pm Every Wednesday on Facebook.

We continue to stay connected through:

Connecting to kids old school style through the mail!

2:52 prayer group - every Tuesday at 2:52 pm First Lights kids, family, and team will be praying related to COVID-19 2:52 because that is the verse for elementary kids Luke 2:52.

Addy and Owen Brubaker are leaving encouraging messages for postman and other essential workers on the bottom of her driveway and at her front door.

Visit firstlights.org for more information on everything Children's Ministry related.

Want to Be Safe and Still Make Your Vote Count?

As a poll worker I have a vested interest in voting in the Primary on June 2. I encourage you to vote but wonder if a mail-in ballot is something you might want to consider. There is concern over protective gear for poll workers so the more that use the mail- in the fewer contacts that will be made. You can ask for a ballot on-line at votespa.com/mailballot. The choice of a mail-in or absentee ballot is given. You need no excuses to vote by mail-in ballot. You will need your driver's license number. You can also call 1-877-votespa (option 3). It's a time when we have our minds on so much else but we all know this is important. May 26th is the last day to apply for a mail-in ballot and it must be in by June 2.

Submitted by Deanna Nolder

Need a creative outlet? Recipe for Chalk Paint

1 cup water, 1 cup cornstarch, food color Go paint a message of hope! Submitted by an anonymous fan of sidewalk art 😊 Send pics of your creations to pastor4fumc@gmail.com and we’ll post them!

Looking Ahead

Many of you have been asking what is happening with the pastoral transition due to the pandemic. The answer is: we are moving ahead. Pastor Cathy has been meeting online with the Cabinet and Bishop Park, and is spending about 2 days a week in Cabinet/district meetings. While our actual move date from the parsonage is not yet known, Pastor Cathy will be starting part-time in the York District office in June, and part-time here in Chambersburg. Which means, May will be the last month of meetings for administrative teams with Pastor Cathy. Staff will continue to meet with Pastor Cathy as needed in June.

In the meantime, Pastor Steve has been joining us for various online meetings, and is meeting one on one with leadership and staff. He has already visited the Men’s Wednesday bible study, and talks regularly with Pastor Cathy.

Pastor Cathy’s last Sunday will be June 21, Pastor Steve’s first Sunday will be the first Sunday in July.

We also realize that as Franklin County is still in the red zone, it will most likely not be possible to have a full church goodbye celebration for Pastor Cathy before she leaves for her new assignment. Pastor Cathy and SPRC will be working on how to best care for our goodbyes in ways that are helpful and keep us all safe.

In the meantime, staff, Leadership Team and the Corona Response Team are all working hard on what it will be like to be the church when our county moves into first yellow, then green zones. Stay tuned for further details!

Finances

Due to the hard work of staff, leadership and a special thanks to Ryan Stouffer, First UMC has received a provisional approval to receive a PPP loan for the specific purpose of assisting with the salaries of our staff who continue to work hard during this pandemic. We are not certain at this time, however, as to whether or not we will qualify for the loan forgiveness program. We will keep you informed.

While the PPP would certainly be a blessing, and ease some of the financial challenges of keeping our giving strong in this time while we are apart, it would only cover salaries for a very short time. With or without the additional funding, the financial health of First UMC is dependent on the giving of its fellowship. The month of April showed a return to about 80% of our regular giving. The last two weeks in March were about 40% of our regular giving.

We thank everyone for making the extra effort of mailing in your offerings, or moving to online giving. The good news is because of the staff's presence online and the sharing of what is happening in Hungry Hearts, we have also received multiple gifts from the Chambersburg community towards the food ministry. With the increased demands on our Hungry Hearts budget, we are grateful that God is connecting people to First UMC and our ministry through our digital presence.