April 11, 2024 – Weekly News
First United Methodist Church – Hershey
64 W. Chocolate Avenue, Hershey, PA 17033   717-533-9668
This Week 4/11 - 4/18
 Sunday Worship
8:00 am Traditional Worship in the Sanctuary
10:00 am Blended Worship in the Sanctuary (Live on YouTube channel here)
 Fellowship Class: "Twin Peaks: A Study in Matthew's Gospel" 

4/14 - 9 am in the Social Hall or Join by Zoom.  The Meeting ID is: 875 6781 4044 Passcode: 088756         

Children’s Ministry Events

4/14- 4:30 pm Children’s Music

4/14- 5 pm Discovery Club in Clubhouse

4/14- 5 pm BOND in BOND room

Youth Ministry (7-12th grade) Events.

4/14 - Youth Group 4:30-7pm in Youth Room

Young Adults Ministry (18-35 yrs. old)

4/11- Young Adult Group 6:30-8:30 pm Youth Room

Crafters Gathering

4/14- 4:30pm-6pm Room 204

Disciple Bible Study Fast Track – New Testament (Craig Fasnacht, Teacher) 

4/15 - 6:30p – 8:00 pm in the Youth Room

4/16 - 9:00a – 10:30 am in the Youth Room

Passionate Worship Opportunities

Live Streamed Blended Worship The 10:00 am Worship Service is live streamed every week. It is also recorded, so you may watch later at your convenience. Please visit the First UMC YouTube channel here to view the current week’s service as well as all past services.  

Radical Hospitality Offerings

Weekly Notes of Encouragement 
We invite you to help bring encouragement to our church family members who are homebound or in residential care. Just a simple note saying “thinking of you” or “praying for you” will bring so much joy! This week’s notes of encouragement go to:

Lois Lutz, 101 Cottage Drive, Londonderry Village, Palmyra, PA  17078

Nursery Caregivers 
We are looking to hire another nursery caregiver to help on Sunday mornings at 10am. Caregivers need to be 16 or over and complete background checks and Safe Sanctuary training. If interested, contact Cassie McCachren at .

Music - Concert The next concert in our series will feature the Hershey Handbell Ensemble on Sunday, May 5 at 3:00 pm. The group is under the direction of Dr. Shawn Gingrich and comprises of 15 members ringing the largest range of handbells available, seven and a half octaves along with chimes, and other instruments. Celebrating their 20th anniversary, they will premiere a newly commissioned work by renowned composer Fred Gramaan. The concert will also include original works, arrangements of classic tunes, and arrangements of familiar melodies. The concert is free and open to all. A free-will offering will be received.

Intentional Faith Development

April Fellowship Class "Twin Peaks: A Study in Matthew's Gospel"  Running through the end of April, the Fellowship Class will be doing a selective study of the Gospel of Matthew.  The class looked at the first half of this book back in 2022.  Now we will reenter the story on a mountaintop, where Jesus was transfigured and ‘shone like the sun.’  We will follow Jesus and his disciples until they reach another mountaintop, where a resurrected Jesus will give them his final instructions, the Great Commission.  Obviously, the name for this study is ‘Twin Peaks.’ All are welcome to join this discussion on Sunday mornings at 9 am in the SOCIAL HALL.

April 14th - Interested in Social Justice?  A meeting to reorganize the Social Justice Committee will be held on Sunday, April 14, 2024, following the 10 am service in the Social Hall.  Anyone interested is encouraged to attend.  For further information, contact Leah Holbrook at or Phil Jurus at

April 18th - The Broken Way: a daring path into the abundant life by Ann Voskamp Thursday, Upper Overflow, 6.30-8pm - led by Michelle Miduri  - the last session is April 25th.

 April 20th - First Church Men’s Group Breakfast During our next breakfast, we will be visited by Derry Township Police Officer Tony Clemens of the K9 Patrol Unit, a fellow officer, and the newest addition to the K9 Corps, a dog named Ares. This promises to be an entertaining and informative meeting for all FCM breakfast friends.  Be sure to add this to your calendar! Coffee starts at 7.30 am, homemade breakfast at 8 am and the speaker will conclude by 9.30 am.  Your guests are welcome. Meet in the Social Hall.

NEW DAYS & TIMES General Conference of The United Methodist Church with Pastor Lew, The General Conference (the basic decision-making body of the church) meets April 23 - May 3 in Charlotte. In previous gatherings, we have followed developments up to that major event. In our final gatherings, we will unpack some of the decisions made and actions taken.  I invite you to join me in the Social Hall or via Zoom from 9:00a - 9:45a, April 28th and May 5th. The Zoom address will be sent to all persons who have participated in the course to date. New participants are welcome. Just show up in person or send me ( ) your email address.

May 14th  (Tuesday) 7:00– 8:30pm- Seriously Methodist Biography Group
John Wesley kept a journal for the better part of 60 years. Some journals give us glimpses into the soul. Some give us arresting snapshots of the world outside. John Wesley’s journals do both. We will meet in the Upper Overflow Room. Zoom participation will be available. Contact Pastor Lew ( ) for discussion questions and/or Zoom address. The Heart of John Wesley’s Journal, edited by Percy Livingstone Parker (2019). From Amazon: Paperback-$12, Kindle-$1.99 

May 18th - First Church Men’s Breakfast Group. This meeting is the final breakfast until next fall, and we are making it special by inviting all FUMC ladies as our “Ladies Day” guests. The presenter that day will be Rick Schies, Nurse Manager of the memory support neighborhoods at the Masonic Village Health Care Center.  Rick is very passionate about his work and very experienced as well, having spent 20+ years working with his patients. His presentation will be Dementia: Understanding the Basics and will consist of identifying the various brain disorders that lead to dementia, some of the common symptoms and behaviors commonly associated with these brain disorders, treatment options, and how individuals can obtain the support they need as they make this journey. All of us will no doubt learn some valuable information that morning. This invitation will require a headcount.  There will be a sign-up table in the near future, or you may call the church office to reserve a space.

Scuba VBS- July 28th-August 1st  A summer kids’ event called Scuba VBS will be hosted at First United Methodist Church from July 28th to August 1st. At Scuba, kids explore what it means to have a friendship with God! Kids participate in memorable Bible-learning activities, sing catchy songs, play teamwork-building games, devour yummy treats, experience one-of-a-kind Bible adventures, collect Bible Memory Buddies to remind them of God’s love, and test out “sciency”-fun experiments that get imagination bubbling. Plus, kids will learn to look for evidence of God all around them through something called God Sightings. Each day concludes with a Fin-tastic Finale that gets everyone involved in living what they’ve learned.  Scuba is for kids from age 3 years old to 5th grade and will run from 6pm to 8:30 pm each day.  Contact Cassie McCachren with any questions.  Register here to join us for this fun week!

Risk Taking Missions & Service Opportunities: 

Bethesda Mobile Mission
The next night to serve is Saturday, May 11, 2024, from 5:45 pm – 10:00 pm. Invitation for 6-9 volunteers to come along with the Greene's to serve those less fortunate. This time of reaching out is suitable for older youth with a parent or guardian and adults. The Greene’s drive the Bethesda Mobile Mission van and lead the group into the streets of Harrisburg to feed the homeless and hand out blankets, clothes, and toiletries. Call Jenny Greene 717-579-4786 or , if interested. We always need the following donations to hand out: gently used blankets, sheets, towels, toiletries, new AAA batteries, new AA batteries, new sternos, flashlights, underwear, gently used socks, t-shirts, sweatshirts, jeans, and coats. If there is anyone interested in making a thick soup for 35 for us to serve that night, please also let Jenny know.  

Red Bird Mission 2024 Work Camp - Sunday, September 29th - Friday, October 4, 2024, Guided by Jesus Christ, empowers individuals and advocates justice by providing spiritual, educational, health, and community outreach ministries. This work camp will be a chance to help others who are less fortunate in the rural areas of Kentucky. To learn more about the many ministries at Red Bird, google Red Bird Mission (workcamp)For more information about this trip, contact Jenny and Wallace Greene717-579-4786 or The cost for adults is $550.00. This includes transportation, food and lodging at the mission. The trip is limited to 12 participants.  Clearances of child abuse and a criminal background check will be needed, as there will be an opportunity to work with the students at the school.   $100.00 deposit by the first of April to secure your spot.  Scholarships are available. Flyers are available at the information center. 

Extravagant Generosity Offerings

Hershey Food Bank The food bank would greatly appreciate donations of the following items: toothpaste, canned spinach, canned mushrooms, and/or 1-, 2- or 3-pound bags of rice. Donated items can be placed in the shopping cart located in the Narthex.  

 Used Shoes Collection During the month of March, you donated good used shoes. We thank the church members for donating 107 pairs of shoes that were taken to Mission Central, which is partnering with an organization that sends those shoes to individuals and families living in developing nations worldwide. These micro-entrepreneurs then sell the shoes in their local markets, helping themselves out of poverty while providing practical resources for their communities.

After School Matching Pledge Challenge Currently we have an extravagant generosity pledge to match the pledges donated by the church for the After School Program. Our goal is $50,000 total. So far, we have $14,000 in pledges and donations, and the match will go as high as $25,000. Pledge cards are at the Welcome Center. Any questions about the program see Cassie McCachren and Nicole Gearhart.

After School Gift Card Fundraiser  Spring is filled with many special occasions. As you celebrate moms, dads, grads and more- earn for the After School Program by shopping with gift cards from RaiseRight.  Sign up at and buy gift cards right from your computer or phone!  New - you can now order Giant gift cards through Raise Right!  The After School Program will get a percentage from each purchase!  We also have Lowes, Weis, Giant, Chipotle, and Starbucks gift cards for sale in the Narthex after the 10am service.  See Cassie McCachren with any questions.

General Announcements:

Pastor Jenn on Short Term Family Leave Beginning April 26th, Pastor Jenn will be on leave until June 7th. She is caring for a relative who is undergoing surgery and was approved by SPRC as well as the District Supervisor to take this time off. During this time, please direct all calls and emails to the church office where you will be directed to the proper contact. In case of emergencies, please call Pastor Lew at 717-695-1532. His office hours will be on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9am-noon.

Prayers for General Conference

April 15th: We pray for the General Conference Team and the Bishops that God will use the gifts they offer up for the good of all. 

April 22nd: There are a lot of pieces of legislation to go through. We pray that the legislation would help us be one with Christ, one with each other, and one in ministry with all the world. 

April 29th: General Conference will be wrapping up this week, while much will need to be decided, we take time to lift up the whole of our church and our call to make disciples.