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On Easter Sunday, we will be in front of the Church from 9:30 - 10:15 a.m. handing out communion packets so that we all can partake during our Easter Services which will be streaming on line as well!

We ask that one family member pick up the elements for the entire family.

3/27/20 Children and Parents:

FUMC drive-through Bible lesson packet pick up

Dear Friends,

While you are out Monday morning picking up your school packet, you are invited to come to the FUMC parking lot between 9:30-12:00 to pick up a Bible lesson packet-snack included! Ms. Rhonda will meet you at your car to hand off a fun packet which includes a scripture lesson and activity sheets. Be sure to drop by! Studying Bible lessons at home is a good way to stay connected to God.

We miss our special gatherings on Wednesdays and Sundays! We are working on plans for many fun activities to do together when we return.

May God bless you and keep you safe, Ms. Rhonda

Crisis at Hand

We are facing an incredibly stressful and unprecedented situation relating to the onset and spread of COVID-19 (coronavirus). There has been an onslaught of information regarding how to keep oneself and one’s family and friends safe from contracting the virus itself.  For instance, we have all been told to stay home if possible, practice social distancing, wash your hands for 20 seconds, etc.  However, what might be lacking is information designed to assist people with the emotional stress that might result from such a widespread sense of panic.  It is quite possible that this situation will result in social isolation, loneliness, anxiety, obsessive thinking, excessive worry and fear, and even symptoms of depression. The purpose of this article is to provide you with some helpful thoughts and suggestions on managing stress during this time.  Foundation for Stress Management First of all, it is extremely important to remember that, in any time of stress, the first step in managing potential emotional difficulty is to keep in mind the basic strategies for good self-care. The fundamental approaches to maintaining good selfcare include, but are not limited to, eating a well-balanced/ nutritious diet, staying hydrated, getting enough exercise, and staying well-rested. By maintaining physical strength and health, you will not only strengthen your immune system to lower your risk of contracting COVID-19 and/or suffering severe reactions to it, but you will also build a strong physical foundation for being able to successfully manage the situation and potential emotional distress to follow.

Social Isolation and Potential Loneliness

Once you are able to maintain the physical strength and health that will increase your ability to maintain emotional health, there are additional things that can be done.  If you share your home with a partner, family members, roommates, or others, you might be in a good position to avoid isolation and loneliness. If you happen to live alone and are following the advice to practice social distancing and staying at home, it will be extremely important to stay connected with family and friends.  Fortunately, we live in an age in which technology makes it possible to stay connected and it is important to reach out via email, texting, phone, social media, etc.  It is even possible to talk via phone or computer and see your loved ones through programs such as FaceTime and Skype. Another great idea for staying connected is to go live on Facebook for your friends to see you and share in conversations among your social groups.

Be Mindful of the Reliability of Information Sources

Just as it is important to stay connected and social media is a great way to do this, it is also important to remember that there is a great deal of misinformation going around on social media sites. Information that might not be 100% accurate leads to widespread panic. Therefore, if you utilize this strategy to stay connected, do so is a way that does not feed anxiety, worry, and fear. It is important to verify information with a reliable source before reacting to it. Be cautious of the news sources presenting information and always double check facts with sources such as the Center for Disease Control (CDC) or the World Health Organization (WHO). Be on the lookout for contradictory information and be wary of information that seems emotionally overactive or questionable due to inconsistencies.  Continuous exposure to the news is not a helpful strategy for managing stress or anxiety. Pick a few trusted news sources and create a plan for when, where or how you will access the news. For example, checking a particular website only three times per day or watching the 5:30 pm national news and local news once per day. Also, identify how and when you provide factual updates to children and ensure conversations that you have with and in front of children are developmentally appropriate.  Staying informed with accurate information and avoiding over exposure to COVID-19 information are equally important to your overall safety and well-being.

Specific Tips for Telecommuting: From Michael Harper, M.Ed., Fitness Wellness

Training Supervisor:

1. Have a normal morning routine (whatever that is for you) and don’t start working the moment you wake up. Hold off on Jabbering, texting, and emailing until you feel human.

2. Get dressed (shower and brush your teeth, too!), even if this means putting on a clean set of “day” pajamas. Do something to feel pulled together and ready to start your day.

3. Set daily SMART goals and write them down.

4. Tackle high-priority tasks first.

5. Take a lunch break! Go for a walk. Get some sunshine in your back yard.  Eat a nutritious lunch (don’t just munch your way through quarantine snacks!).

6. If you have the time, make learning a priority. Read that leadership book you have been meaning to get to. Watch a YouTube video to learn more about Excel. Take a free LinkedIn class.

7. Identify the end of your workday and stick to it.

Staying Grounded

To remain grounded during times of uncertainty, it is also helpful to practice relaxation strategies such as deep breathing, yoga, meditation, and mindfulness.  Reading encouraging affirmations everyday throughout the day, taking breaks to go outside for fresh air, listening to soothing music, and spending time in nature are just a

few ideas for helping to stay calm and keeping perspective.  (Read the Bible—listen to some ole fashion Southern Gospel music!) JA

If I can help you, feel free to give me a call.


Re: COVID-19

Dear Church:

After much prayer the Administrative Board met last evening and made some hard decisions.

The following decisions were made:

We will not have a service on Sunday morning for at least 2 weeks.
Hopefully, we will celebrate Palm Sunday together along with Holy Week and Easter Sunday!

We have put together a small worship team to provide live streaming with music, prayer, Scripture and sermon.

The church is closed for now. All the activities of the church have been canceled until further notice.

Most Staff will be working from home.

The office will open Tuesday and Thursday from 8 a.m. to noon.

Please continue to support your church with prayers and offerings.

The mailing address is:
FUMC P.O. Box 447 Goldthwaite 76844

Bishop Mike Lowry in his letter quoted Archbishop William Temple's classic definition of worship, "To worship is to quicken the conscience by holiness of God, to feed the mind with the truth of God, to purge the imagination by the beauty of God, to open the heart to the love of God, to devote the will to the purpose of God. All this is gathered up in that emotion which most cleanses us from selfishness because it is most selfless of all emotions-adoration."

Bishop Lowry goes on to say, "Living in the reality of the Coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic, we collectively confront our desperate need for the worship of God and simultaneously confront our critical need not to gather in crowds of people."

We as the church over the next few weeks will learn to worship in a new way as we grow together as God's children.

If you have a need or a question, please call Pastor John at 325-792-6717.
I ask you to join us on-line.

God's Grace,
Pastor John

Please pray for our church and our country.