News and Announcements for the Week of May 11

We celebrate the music ministry of Chris Neal.  Chris has faithfully served as our organist and choir director for 6 years.  A generous heart, he has often gone above and beyond what was asked of him.  Today is Chris’ last day with us.  Chris has resigned his position with us to serve in the music ministry at Elizabeth’s Chapel UMC.  We will miss his immediate presence but look forward to continued relationship with him through our connectional United Methodist Church.  We are grateful to Chris for his dedicated service and pray that God will continue to bless him and his ministry.

We welcome Edward Bowman in worship with us today.  Edward is a sheep farmer in Gray, TN, has served as an officer of the Tennessee Sheep Producers Association, and is a member of Boone’s Creek Christian Church.  We are grateful that he and one of his lambs are sharing time with us during worship.

During our 11:00 am worship, we are doing Prayers of the People differently.Everyone is invited to write prayer celebrations or concerns on the back of the blue Connection Card and place it in the offering plate during the Offering.  Pastor Dan will retrieve the cards during our worship service and share the concerns aloud.  Please indicate clearly on the card if you do not wish for a particular concern to be shared aloud.

Today in worship, we have the opportunities to give special offerings for three terrific ministries.  We do not expect that you will give to all three, but want to make them available to you and let God lead you in generosity.  We do hope that as you give to these “second-mile” offerings, you will be faithful in your regular tithes and offerings to our General Fund.

First, we invite you to give to our offering for the Robinson Memorial AME Zion Church.  We normally take it up on a Communion Sunday, but wanted to move it to today since our last Communion Sunday was also Youth Sunday and the youth were receiving a special offering for World Vision’s 30 Hour Famine.

Second, we invite you to give to the Rockhold Food Pantry, that we regularly support.   You can also bring canned goods and dry foods to be taken to the pantry.

Third, you are invited to give to the Circle of Care Mother’s Day offering, to benefit the elderly of Asbury Place, the United Methodist-related retirement community in Johnson City.  Asbury Place is home to countless mothers, grandmothers, daughters, sisters and aunts.  The majority of their benevolent care recipients are women, many of whom have outlived their husbands.  Your contribution to the Circle of Care Fund helps ensure that their residents will never be asked to leave the community they love due to financial hardship.  Additionally, these gifts help to meet the costs of medical care and other critical necessities.  For any gift, you can make a check payable to “Bluff City UMC” and mark in the memo line either “Robinson AMEZ”, “Food Pantry”, or “Asbury Place”.

 United Methodist Women will meet in the parking lot at 11:00 Tuesday, 5/13, to go to the One Acre Café in Johnson City for lunch.

As the Buffalo Mountain Camp Board continues to deal with the aftermath of the flood of August 2012, clearly everything has changed.  The job requirements of the Camp Director have changed from managing a camp operation to camp ministry development.    Randy Pasqua, Holston Conference Camp and Retreat Ministry Director, and the Buffalo Mountain Camp Personnel Committee have made the difficult decision to end the tenure of Jason Onks as the Buffalo Mountain Camp Director.  The Buffalo Mountain Board appreciates greatly Jason’s contribution to the camp’s ministries during his eight year term of service and his cooperation during this time of transition.  The Board is pursuing the hire of an interim Buffalo Mountain Camp Development Director with the skills and experience to help the Buffalo Mountain Board sort through the complex issues of discerning the way forward for this vital conference ministry.

Please continue to pray for Jason and his family, the Buffalo Mountain Camp Board, and the discernment processes that are taking place.

Hands-On Mission Project for Zimbabwe—Food buckets  – Goal : 300

  • 1 bag sugar (4-5 lb)
  • 1 bag corn meal (4-5 lb)
  • 1 bag self-rising flour (4-5 lb)
  • 1 bag rice (2 lb)
  • 1 bag dried beans (2 lb)
  • 1 powdered  milk (10 oz or less)
  • 1 box old-fashioned oats (18 oz. or less) (NOT instant oatmeal packets)
  • 1 bottle cooking oil (48 oz or less)
  • 1 box Splenda/sucralose packets (50 ct. or less)

Pack all in NEW, FOOD GRADE, 5-gallon bucket with lid. (Lowe’s )
Please DO NOT seal lids.
Include $5.00 donation for packing and shipping—DO NOT PUT IN BUCKET
Church Treasurer will write one check to cover all buckets.

Have buckets completed and in Library by Sunday, May 25.

Life Groups have launched!  There are currently three groups:  D3 Women’s Health group led by Samantha Gray and Jane Bellamy; Sisters of Strength Women’s group led by Jin Lane and Joan Williams; and a men’s group led by Mike Miller and Tony Lunden.  Please use the blue Connection Card to sign up for one of the groups by listing in the “My Next Steps” section the names of group leaders for the group you are interested in, and place the card in the offering plate during worship.  If you have an idea for another type of Life Group not listed, please indicate it in that section on the Connection Card.  Please see the bulletin insert for more info.

Vacation Bible School will be held the week of July 13-16, from 6:30 pm—8:30 pm.  Anyone interested in helping, please call Judy Finney at (423) 946-7944 or email her at  All help will be appreciated.

The Czech Missions Golf Tournament will be held Saturday, May 24 at Buffalo Valley Golf Course,  All proceeds will go to support mission teams traveling to the Czech Republic and the English Speaking United Methodist Church in Prague.  Sponsors, players and volunteers are needed to make this event a success.  Learn more at

Annual conference will be held June 8-11 at Lake Junaluska, NC.  The mission offering for the 2014 session has been designated to support education in South Sudan.  The goal of the offering is $175,000.  For more information, please visit


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