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WUMC Fall 2021 Newsletter

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A Church That Cares Fall 2021 the Westlake UMC Newsletter Instead desire first and forem God s kingdom and God s righteousness and all these things will be given to you as w Matthew 6 33 putting God first in living and giving Do we worship idols The answer may surprise you During the month of October our church will hear about God s generosity and our response as we experience our stewardship program first putting GOD first in living and giving developed by author and pastor Mike Slaughter of Ginghamsburg Church We are made in God s image and are meant to be creators of life and hope not the consumers of our culture s shiny gods We have the ability to change the world and create a legacy that will live forever in the lives of generations to follow That legacy starts when each of us takes the hard steps of financial discipline and fulfilling the call to generosity that God has placed in all of us The goal of this stewardship program is for all of us to ask questions of ourselves and be open to the possibility that God will lead us in new directions in our lives During the four week program we ll be challenged in a number of different ways We ll be asked to look for the idols in our own lives Rev Tracey Beadle tbeadle westlake umc org Hint Most of them aren t animals made of gold and name the ways these idols enslave us holding us back from living in the true freedom that God desires for us We ll be challenged to consider the place that money work and debt have in our own lives What are our common understandings of these and might the witness of Scripture lead us to some different understandings We ll be challenged to ask ourselves what it means for us to be faithful to save and to give How do we balance all the competing interests in our lives What priorities does God want us to have Finally we ll be challenged to give with our hearts not out of obligation or a sense of duty and not just when we think the recipient deserves our gift Instead we ll be challenged to give the way God gives freely fully with no favorites or expectations of repayment It is our prayer that at the end of these four weeks we will have begun to grow even moreso into the individuals and the church that God knows we can be Please join us in first putting GOD first in living and giving

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first putting God first in living and giving October 10 Naming Our Idols October 17 Money Work and Debt October 24 Be Faithful Save and Give October 31 Heart Giving How To Go Deeper Order the accompanying book of 28 daily devotions to dive more deeply into the weekly topics through daily prayer first Devotional putting GOD first in living and giving by Mike Slaughter Study the book that this series is based on individually in your small group or in your Sunday school class shiny gods finding freedom from things that distract us Fellowship We value fellowship at Westlake UMC and we love to have fun together We are looking forward to our Fall Festival on Sunday October 17 from 4 6pm We will have a blast in a safe and responsible way in our church parking lot with food sweet treats fun games prizes balloon animals music and friends Plus we will have our Cookies with Santa event on Saturday December 4 Stay tuned for more details If you would like to participate in these events save the date on your calendars and keep an eye on the Events page of our website www westlake umc org events so that you can sign up Do you know what s just as much fun as participating Volunteering If you would like to volunteer to help at one of these events or if you d like to join the team contact Dixie Paulos to be apart of the Fellowship Committee dixie paulos att net Community Engagement Getting to know our neighbors is really important to us and we love partnering with organizations within our community to do just that We were thankful to be able to participate and contribute to some meaningful community events in person this year On Sunday July 4 we joined with our friends from the Westlake Chamber of Commerce and the City of Westlake Hills to participate in the 4th of July Parade We had a strong showing and represented the fun warmth and acceptance of Westlake UMC in the parade Tom Rioux s 1920 s Model A car was a big hit as well We had a great time at our Back to School Water Bash on Monday August 16 partnering with our friend Kate Slaughter representing Lost Creek Living Magazine the Lost Creek Neighborhood Association and Tinney BBQ We set up in Boulder Trail Park in the Lost Creek neighborhood and spent time with neighbors as we celebrated the start of the new school year with great BBQ and a giant inflatable slip n slide Each family received a goodie bag with backpack tags blessed in worship services the day before Last year we modified our 2020 Fall Festival to be a drive thru experience which allowed kids to have fun and enjoy the attractions in a safe manner Based on where we are at right now it looks like we ll be able to hold an outdoor Fall Festival here in the church parking lot on Sunday October 17 from 4 6pm with everyone wearing masks There will be food sweet treats fun games prizes balloon animals music and friends Put the Fall Festival on your calendar because we are looking forward to seeing you there RSVP sign up for volunteer opportunities at www westlake umc org fallfest Our Cookies with Santa event is also coming back this year on Saturday December 4 Mark your calendars and keep your eyes and ears open for more details Rev Curt Davis cdavis westlake umc org

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Worship Fully Through Adult Ministry Opportunities We Value Small Groups An Essential Part of our Church Community Westlake UMC offers small groups that can help you live out your faith in Christian community worship God truly and fully and build relationships with other church members Participating in a small group can be a catalyst of change in people s lives and provide a safe place for individuals to share their faith journey Small groups are an essential part of our church community make them an essential part of your life There are many Sunday morning offerings as well as weekday options Whether you regularly attend a small group or have yet to check one out please know you are invited you are welcome you are wanted In order for everyone to feel comfortable participating in a small group many groups are offering a hybrid model starting this fall where participants can attend in person or via Zoom A list of opportunities is below Also check the Adult Ministries tab on the WUMC website to find out more information Find zoom links contact deatials and more for the groups listed below at westlake umc org groups SUNDAY MORNING OPPORTUNITIES 10 10 11 05 AM Bridges Class Teacher led video discussions series exploring scripture and spiritual practices for adults briding generations In Person Family Foundations Class A blend of scripture study cultural awareness for parents with younger children Hybrid In Person Online Fellowship Class A teacher led video discussion series blending scripture history practical application of principles Hyrbird In Person Online Journeys Class Teacher led discussion on a variety of social justice issues Hybrid In Person Online Perspectives Class Drop in format with topics pulled from this week s news stories Hybrid InPerson Online Parenting Tweens Teens Class Conversations About Faith Culture Raising Tweens Teens Online 2nd 4th Sundays Preston Wyatt Bible Study Class In Depth Bible Small group discussion of short scripture topics We use Methodist study materials with a contemporary perspective Hybrid In Person Online WEEKDAY OPTIONS Band of Brothers a men s group Tuesdays 7 30 9 00 am in the Church Library on Zoom Abiding in the Vine a women s discussion group 1st and 3rd Tuesdays 7 30 pm via Zoom Heart to Heart Women s Bible Study a spiritual discussion group for women Thursdays at 1 30 pm via Zoom Mom to Mom multigenerational group of mothers providing support and mentorship please email Linda Tietz at lintietz gmail com or Susan Landers at susanlandersberry gmail com for more information WUMC Men s Emmaus Reunion Group a group of men who have completed The Walk to Emmaus Thursdays 8 00 9 00 am in the Church Library on Zoom SPECIAL SPIRITUAL GROWTH OPPORTUNITY Disciple Fast Track 1 Studying the bible is an essential part of becoming and growing as a disciple of Jesus Christ Disciple 1 Fast Track is ideal for busy people who want to fit a comprehensive bible study into their schedules Pastor Tracey invites you to participate in this 12 week study which happens on Tuesday evenings via Zoom from 6 30 8 00pm beginning on September 7 Please sign up at www westlake umc org events disciple 1 fast track If you have questions please contact Pastor Tracey at tbeadle westlake umc org O P E N TA B L E O R C O M E TO T H E TA B L E Remember the former Tables of 8 Program We d like to invite you and yours to a new way to gather introducing Open Table OR introducing Come to the Table We are reimagining the small group fellowship events formerly held in homes and we d like your input Please fill out our 2 inute survey to help us shape the structure and timing of the program Once we determine interest and timing registration will be made available groups will be formed and you and your tablemates will have a choice of meeting at restaurants in homes or at WUMC Your group can meet as often as you all prefer The survey will give you a chance to register your own preferences You can complete the survey at westlake umc org survey Plan to meet new friends at Open Table OR at Come to the Table

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Youth Ministry Every year at Westlake UMC we are excited to journey with students as they grow deeper in their relationship with God and each other One way in which we grow deeper intentionally is through our annual Middle School Mission Trip to San Antonio with a program called Blueprint Ministries Blueprint Ministries is a great way for our youth to combine their love of God with acts of service The students go Monday through Friday and each group gets to work with an intern at Blueprint and are given an in depth background on the person family they will be helping that week Throughout the years the students have gotten to do sheetrock painting tiling and their favorite roofing While the students love the service part my favorite thing is not only seeing the students grow closer with God and as friends but having really important and thoughtful conversations with the homeowners that we help out too I love watching them ask and listen to life lessons and stories that the homeowners share with them and how attentive they are with them Mission Trips are one of my favorite things that we do here at Westlake UMC and I can t wait to work with our youth more this fall Since we love lending service to the community so much we have decided to make it a monthly thing Children s Ministry The COVID Pandemic brought a ton of changes and we managed to meet the challenges it brought Throughout the pandemic Sunday School and children s groups met on Zoom we recorded segments for worship and music we did at home faith formation activities and we prayed frequently for each other and the world Through it all we learned deep things about how important we are to each other and how our faith travels with us and grows right along with us But now we are SO EXCITED to have the fall return and offer new gathering opportunities for ministry We know the COVID pandemic is still dynamic and shifting but with the spiritual practice of flexibility we are looking forward to a season of outdoor in VA C AT I O N B I B L E S C H O O L person gatherings for service fellowship and deepening our faith We are currently planning for Sunday School on Sundays at 10am Yes masks will be expected for the Elementary students both indoors and outdoors Once preschool starts up masks will be optional for our youngest disciples We understand that masks are most effective when the wearers can be effective in their mask hygiene practices Once the COVID risk staging goes down in Travis County masks will be more optional You can anticipate that Sunday School will be active and engaging with learning and faith sprinkled with outdoor games as time and weather allow Elementary Sunday School kicked off on August 29th with a service project and some G R E AT B I G B E A U T I F U L W O R L D VBS 2021 happened at the end of July We did our best to mitigate as much risk as we could while still giving the participants lots of love and fun 48 kids and 40 volunteers gathered for the week We sang and worshipped played games and made crafts and learned about all the wonderful ways God made and takes care of this Great Big Beautiful World We learned about water and flowers and bees and our bodies from various members of our congregation There was even had a small animal petting zoo God was present in all of it WESTLAKE UNITED METHODIST PRESCHOOL The preschool has faced many challenges this year First we delayed the start of last school year and opened in January 2021 We have continued to work through the spring and 8 weeks of summer sessions We remain open this school year with special COVID 19 procedures in place When the winter storm hit this past February burst pipes caused water damage to several classrooms This summer while repairing the damage we have been able to refurbish these rooms with new cabinets new floors and fresh paint We removed walls from two sets of classrooms in order to provide a bigger and better learning environment for the children The preschool office has moved to a former classroom giving the administrators more room to work Despite the challenges WUMP has an amazing staff who have been flexible throughout the pandemic and all of the changing work conditions this year We continue to put the needs of our children first and are committed to making sure that we provide a loving environment for each child

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YOUTH CALENDAR We are calling it Monthly Service Saturdays and we will be helping out in different ways and different places each time I cannot wait to continue our amazing mission work closer to home and look forward to seeing the youth grow in their faith Below are some fun and unique things we have planned so far for youth this fall I will have more details and sign ups as the events get closer playground time The Preschool Sunday School class will convene at the beginning of October We are currently in the middle of hiring childcare workers so as soon as we have some wonderful and loving people in place we will open our nursery again Also this fall we have planned excellent service opportunities Where our 1x a month service group has been focused on 4th and 5th graders we are now opening it up to Elementary age students though younger students may need a bit of extra guidance These will be planned in as large a space as possible for the time of the meeting usually outside weather permitting but the gym is also a possibility September Youth Pool Party Geoff Linda Cox s homeSunday September 12th Youth Room Revamp Monthly Service Saturday WUMC Saturday September 18th October Christmas in October Sunday October 3rd Monthly Service Saturday TBD Saturday Oct 16th Fall Festival Sunday October 17th November Traveling Turkeys Saturday November 13th December Advent Workshop Sunday December 5th Wonderfest Sunday December 5th Westlake HS Youth Christmas Party Sunday December 19th CHIDLREN S CALENDAR September September 12th 3rd grade Bible September 12th Elementary Service September 26th Outdoor Adventures Finally but not least we re super looking forward to new gathering and fellowship time in Outdoor Adventures These are 1x a month opportunity for fun and highly active outings These details will be flexible as the adventure is likely to change each month Many ideas are percolating but among them are hiking field games and swimming We re looking forward to seeing you this fall Backpacks for RST In early August we packed 50 backpacks for Refugee Services of Texas We gathered pencils and notebooks markers and folders hand sanitizer and paper and packed them into backpacks for 50 students These are students who have arrived at our community from many places seeking asylum or refuge from their home Being able to send students to school with all the new supplies they need is a wonderful gift

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Welcoming a Family From Afghanistan The Journey s class of WUMC has been given the opportunity to prepare an apartment for a family who will be arriving in Austin from Afghanistan We do not have an exact time frame for their arrival nor do we know specifics about the composition of the family It is my understanding that we will be given between 12 and 48 hours notice before their actual arrival Yikes But we are so excited for this opportunity to welcome the stranger And we know that with your help we can make this happen In order to furnish an apartment for this family we will need lots of help We have been able to secure commitments for most of the larger furniture items At this point the most efficient and productive way for us to gather the remaining items bedding linens kitchen items toiletries personal items food and other incidentals will be for us to collect funds so that a group of us can purchase the necessary items You may make a donation to WUMC by going on line selecting the give tab enter the amount of your donation select Afghan family in the dropdown Of course you can always mail a check to WUMC with a notation that it should be used for the Afghan family We will also need help with the delivery and set up of the apartment We will need people who have trucks and who can help us carry the furniture up a flight or two of stairs These helpers will need to be available once we are notified that the family is on their way Right now we are going to focus on getting an apartment set up Later we may help with clothing school supplies and other needs Please feel free to contact Ann Finch at 512 422 7015 or carrieannfinch hotmail com if you have questions or would be able to help CHRISTMAS IN OCTOBER We are looking forward to Christmas In October Each year we work to cultivate a variety of service opportunities These opportunities are not only varied in who they serve but also in the mode of service that is offered We strive for a balance of modes between financial giving in kind giving and hands on giving Our projects are headed up with Angels who are dedicated to making sure the service gets connected to the organization and all the details are included This year s CIO will launch on Sunday October 3rd While that is the launch there are usually hands on projects throughout the fall SERVICE COMMITTEE Finding ways to serve our community during the pandemic was challenging We found out that hands on service opportunities was the best ways to connect with each other That personal touchstone is key to really seeing God in everyone we meet no matter the circumstances We ve had to change many of the things we did this year but our church found ways to give and serve generously From drive thru giving in Lost Creek to pairs of people packing love bags for prisoners to gathering supplies or baking at home to send to La Posada we found ways to serve As a committee to cultivate 2nd mile giving opportunities at the Communion Rail The Mission Match Program matches each Communion Rail up to 5 000 We thank you for the support and service you give It s a blessing to be in ministry with you Putting God First Caring For Others In appreciation of 18 trained Congregational Care Ministers serving in roles within our church family during times of joy concern sorrow With gratitude for the 12 Stephen Ministers who continue to offer one to one Christian care giving to men and women in confidential settings for those in life s challenges With thankfulness for the 12 volunteers who write 80 100 Care Notes of connection per month during the year to connect us to others with prayer joys and needs Big thanks to our Flower Ministry team sharing flowers with the Unwillingly absent and families with New Babies as well as the meals and embroidered gifts for new baby families Due to these many hands and hearts many people have received restaurant catered meals in 2021 delivered to porches for contactless delivery during the pandemic This includes those with new babies those recovering from health issues and those mourning a death in their family We will honor All our Loved Ones of blessed memory on Sunday November 7 on All Saints Sunday in worship and with a grief support program offered by zoom open to all during the Sunday School hour for that one morning Our Prayer Team gathers every Wednesday afternoon and prays for all the people who have experienced joys concerns or losses in recent days The prayerful group remembers those who have lost a loved one for a year from the date of their passing Please find your way to be part of the Caring Ministry of Westlake UMC

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Welcome We value belonging at Westlake UMC and we want everyone to feel welcomed here in this church community A recent survey from the Barna Research Group shows that two thirds of adults attending church in the US feel encouraged after participating in worship services while eight percent said they left feeling disappointed and ten percent left feeling guilty Among folks at Westlake UMC we hope the percentages are much higher on the encouragement scale and low to non existent on the disappointment and guilt scale We want everyone to leave each Sunday s worship service whether in person or online being reminded of God s great love for us and a renewed sense of purpose that we are called to reflect that love all around us of worship these all contribute to one s experience in a worship service whether you are on the giving or receiving end of these positive expressions Every participant in the worship service contributes to a sense of welcome belonging and encouragement And we re so thankful to create this kind of environment together in all of the different aspects of the church s ministry We will foster this kind of environment at our fall Newcomers Lunch on Sunday September 12 from 12 20 1 20pm and at other strategic dates throughout the year These lunches help folks who are newer to the church take the next steps towards deeper points of relational connection through classes and small groups and to grow in compassion through meaningful and regular service WESTLAKE UNITED METHODIST PRESCHOOL You might be thinking that the people with the microphones on the stage are the ones who contribute most heavily to these statistics regarding encouragement disappointment or guilt While certainly influential the ones up front don t fully control those outcomes A smile a kind word a fist bump heartfelt participation in the different aspects You re all part of the welcoming and encouraging environment of the church If you d like to play an official role by becoming a Greeter for Sunday worship services or by serving on a team to create the Newcomers Lunches please contact Curt Davis at cdavis westlake umc org Making Music at WUMC If there s one thing that this pandemic has taught us it s that flexibility amongst chaos is the name of the game So many songs and Bible verses come to mind about how we can make all the plans in the world but ultimately we are in control of very little This can cause all kinds of anxiety and sleepless nights Yet with practice we can retrain our minds and build the habit of trusting God and making that relationship with God our top priority Music can be a healing balm for many But it requires making a conscious choice when we have so many things calling for our attention to take a time out put God first and spend time worshipping God through song and instruments It s amazing how much this can do towards making one feel refreshed and more connected It is these simple daily choices of giving God our time our efforts our gifts and resources that grow that beautiful relationship within God s community Come join in our community of bell ringers No experience is required only a willingness to be flexible and make a joyful musical offering to God CHANCEL CHOIR this choir provides music leadership for the 11 15 am service Rehearsals resume when we are safe to sing together again on Wednesdays 7 00 8 30 pm in the Music Room Childcare is provided upon request This year we are inviting youth to join the Choir CHILDREN S CHOIR this choir is for kids in grades K 5 who love to sing We will begin rehearsing on Sunday mornings from 9 1510 AM once we are safe to sing together again stay tuned OH and know that we will be incorporating UKELELES in our singing instruction Yay PRAISE BAND The Foundation praise band provides worship music every Sunday at the 9 00 am service The music is contemporary rock with occasional country and gospel music tunes thrown in SANCTUARY BELL CHOIR this choir is made up of youth and adults of all experience levels They usually play once a month at the 11 15am worship service They meet on Wednesdays from 5 45 7 00 PM in the Sanctuary CHAMBER BELL ENSEMBLE this unique choir is made up 4 5 players who are seasoned ringers and ring 4 8 bells each They play 2 3 times in the Fall and the Spring HOLY HANDBELL CHOIR grades 3rd 5th Nina Revering Vocal Choirs nrevering westlake umc org Kellie Brewer Bell Choirs kbrewer westlake umc org JV RINGERS grades 6th 9th Rehearsals TBD Frank Webster Praise Band jfrankweb gmail com

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Westlake United Methodist Church 1460 Redbud Trail Austin TX 78746 PERM AN E N T E N D O W M E N T F UN D Permanent ENDOWMENT FUND es tla ke U ni GRANT REQUESTS To seek support for a particular program or project that you feel fits into the Church s mission of Following Christ Transforming Lives go to westlake umc org endowment and click Proposal Form or email me Erin Cowden or Pastor Tracey to get connected The PEF committee prayerfully considers all requests at our semi quarterly meetings ADDING A CODICIL TO YOUR WILL Adding a codicil to your will is a great way to include the church in your planned giving A sample codicil form and additional information is provided on our website at westlake umc org endowment F INANCI A L R E SU LT S J AN UARY T HR O UGH J UNE 2021 Financial results were very positive during the first six months of 2021 Both income and expenses compared favorably with budgeted amounts This puts us in good position as we head into the second half of the year As we return from summer vacations it s very important that we review our pledges and make sure that we are current Remember that there are options for making contributions online through the church s website Thank you for your continued support Income Expenses Net income 600 817 539 160 61 657 2003 ch ESTd W SCHOLARSHIP Parents of seniors The committee is gearing up to award a COLLEGE SCHOLARSHIP to one or more deserving WUMC members for the 3rd year running in 2022 Keep an eye out for additional information and the updated application via the website and weekly email blurbs Scholarship recipient s will be announced on Graduate Sunday in May of 2022 t e d M eth o di st C hr u