We See God Through Jesus

Rev. Glen Miles, Senior Minister


The message of Easter is filled with good news, amazing news, and almost unbelievable news—that love has defeated death. No wonder the world is filled with Hallelujahs on Easter Sunday.


Easter comes with an implied question: Are you ready to give yourself over to the way of God's love? Answering yes and living this way can bring us new life throughout our lives. It is a way of experiencing Jesus every day. 


My friend Scott reminded me of the Italian writer Ignazio Silone, who has a line in one of his books that goes like this, "If we treat one another, in the same way that Jesus treated people, it will be as if Jesus never left this world." There is deep truth in his words. I've seen Silone's idea in action.


I love Marcus Borg's writings and teachings. In his book The Heart of Christianity, he writes, "We see God through Jesus." He also says Jesus is both a real person and a metaphor for God. If that sounds radical, it's because it is! 


Like Professor Borg, you and I would do well to live out our faith. I first heard him speak in person at Village Presbyterian Church in the Kansas City suburb of Prairie Village. The 900-seat sanctuary was filled and more. His lecture was beautiful. His ideas were profound. Oh, there were some points I wanted to quibble with, but his manner and style were inviting. He spoke not with power but with authority. It was an authority that came from his humble and gracious nature.


After the lecture, there was a time for Q and A. Lines quickly formed at the microphones set up around the sanctuary. The very first question came from a man who spoke with an angry tone. He wanted Borg to know that he was leading people to hell. "Don't you realize what you are doing," he shouted.


In a soft voice, Borg asked, "Tell me your name?" The man gave his name. "Where are you from?" "Kansas City." "Are you a member of a congregation here?" "Yes." Borg went on, "Thank you for your passion and your faith. I can tell we disagree with each other about Jesus, but I am grateful for your willingness to ask me a question."


I will never forget the quiet, humble, and gracious way he responded to the man's angry query. What did Silone say? "If we treat one another in the same way that Jesus treated people, it will be as if Jesus never left this world."


Truly.

Easter Sunday

FIRST COMMUNITY NORTH:

  • 9 am Grace Hall- sermon by Glen Miles, music by the Common Grace band
  • 11 am Sanctuary North - sermon by Glen Miles, music by the Chancel Choir and brass quartet 


FIRST COMMUNITY SOUTH:

  • 6:30 am Sunrise Service - on the lawn South, led by Rev. Sarah Kientz
  • 10 am Sanctuary South - sermon by Glen Miles, music by the Cambridge Choir and brass quartet


Childcare will be offered at the 9, 10 and 11 am services for children 5 and under. There is no childcare for the 6:30 am service.

There will be no Sunday School as children will remain in service with their families. A special Easter bulletin will be given to all children in worship.

Directions to FC North
Directions to FC South

First Community Closings

Gluten Free Communion

by Rev. Mary Kate Buchanan, Minister of Pastoral Care


“Because there is one bread, we who are many are one body, for we all partake of the one bread.” 1 Corinthians 10:17 


First Community is always searching for ways to be more welcoming and inclusive around every corner. We use grape juice instead of wine so that ALL people can partake, like children, folks in recovery, and those who don’t drink. Now, we will be using all gluten-free bread for Communion so that our friends with gluten sensitivities can partake in the same loaf, just as the Apostle Paul said!  


Each time we come to the table, we see a vision of God’s Kingdom, where all are seated together as one body, one church, one people. Come, for the table is ready, and ALL are welcome! Hallelujah!

Governing Board Update

by April Howe, Governing Board Chair


Hello, Fellow First Community Members,


Spring has sprung in Columbus, Ohio! The flowers and trees are waking up and showing us their best. My eyes and heart delight in their arrival, but my sinuses do not, LOL. My hope is that you are blessed with family, friends, and good news this Easter. I'm grateful to be blessed with many ways to celebrate the season of new life and beginnings at First Community. 


For the second year in a row, on Saturday and Sunday of Easter weekend, Gavin and I will travel to Louisville, KY, to visit our daughter, Alicia, in her newly adopted home. We found the lovely UCC-affiliated St. John United Church of Christ to celebrate Easter Sunday last year. Located in the historic downtown NULU (New Louisville) neighborhood, the sanctuary has gorgeous stained-glass windows and is over 150 years old! The congregation and Minister were so welcoming to us last year, and we're looking forward to worshiping with them again this year.


This brings me back to all the blessings we have at First Community! Please thank our clergy, staff, and volunteer lay leaders who have put in many hours during Holy Week (and beyond!) to bring the multiple service offerings, messages, and music we are so blessed to have.


The Governing Board did not meet as a whole in March; however, many of our Committees did meet, and they will have reports to share at our April meeting on the 24th. 


Speaking of April, I'd like to bring to your attention the Otis Moss Spiritual Searcher weekend on April 13. I have not had the chance to attend any of the book groups leading up to this weekend, but I do plan to attend the weekend's offerings.


Questions I'm asking myself this year ~ How and where am I giving my best self? I'm interested to know what questions you're asking? Feel free to send me an email

 

Peace & Blessings, 

April Howe | 2024 FC Governing Board Chair 

First Community Foundation

Seth Stearns, Director of First Community Foundation


As you know, we will kick off the 2024 Camp Akita season soon. We are expecting over 1,500 campers this season! Here are some recent grants that have been awarded by The Foundation supporting the fantastic ministry that happens at Camp Akita: 

Computer replacements funded by: 

  • Fund # 54012 – Kent Brandt Fund (Est 1972) 
  • Fund # 54439 – H & J Johnston Fund (Est 2019) 

Meal stipend for camp staff in between sessions funded by: 

  • Fund # 54432 – Klamar-Piscopo Family Akita Fund (Est 2020) 

Large tent and program-related supplies funded by: 

  • Fund #53110 – Akita Maintenance Endowment (Est 1962) 
  • Fund # 54035 – Rev. James M. Long Honor Endowment (Est 2012) 
  • Fund #53112 – Lee and Bette Solis Akita Foundation (Est 1966) 


These grants totaled $44,400 in support of Camp Akita and the life-changing ministry that it provides! 

 

You can participate in the vital work of the First Community Foundation and the support of the ministries of First Community by creating a fund, donating to an established fund, or remembering the Foundation in your estate planning, will, obituary, and 401(k) benefits. Planned giving is a wonderful way to support those ministries of First Community that you feel most passionate about for decades to come. Not only are your planned gifts vitally important in support of the ministries of First Community, but there may also be tax incentives available to you now and to your loved ones in the disposition of your estate.  

 

First Community Foundation was established in 1961 to support the future of First Community Church's programs and ministries. The Foundation is supported by immediate and planned gifts from those focusing on the future of First Community and leaving a family legacy. The Foundation assures donors that their legacy gift wishes will be honored and benefit the church.  

 

The impact areas supported by the First Community Foundation include:  

 

  • Camp Akita  
  • Facilities, landscape, and maintenance  
  • First Community Village  
  • Missions  
  • Worship & Arts  
  • Youth Programs  

 

Please contact Seth Stearns, Director of First Community Foundation, to explore your planned giving options. You can reach Seth by email at sstearns@FCchurch.com or (614) 488-0681.  

Preachers on the Hot Seat

Join First Community on April 3 for The Gathering. Mini sandwiches, salad and dessert are on the menu. Dinner begins at 5:30 pm, followed by a brief worship service at 5:45 pm in Grace Hall at First Community North.


Following the Gathering, stick around for Preachers on the Hot Seat! FC clergy will answer questions you submit on theology, the Bible, faith, culture, and more. Whether you are a visitor and want to learn more about First Community or you are a long-time member, this is a fun opportunity to learn more about your pastors!


Children are welcome at Midweek Missions, choir, and Pre-K Sing and Play. Children are welcome to join Wednesday evening programs even if they have not attended previously.


We hope to see you on April 3 - all are welcome!

More Information and Registration
More Information and Registration
More Information and Registration
More Information and Registration
More Information and Registration
Missions Updates

Click below to read the On a Mission! monthly news. In this month’s news you can find more information about:

  • In the Heart to Heart update this month, we explore the disparity in oral healthcare for those living in poverty. You can support these individuals by contribution to Heart to Heart’s monthly drive on April 14.
  • Our Refugee Ministry shares updates on the three families currently being supported during their resettlement.
  • The Trading Post supports the Missions of First Community through its store sales. Read about the positive effect they have both in the community and worldwide.
  • The March 8 Deep Griha dinner with guest speaker Jason Barger was a great success! Read the event recap.
  • The Share and Learn Garden volunteer group is excited to start the growing season with new volunteers and a grant from the Columbus Foundation.
Click Here to Read On A Mission! Newsletter

Tandana Foundation

by Rick Greene, Mission Finance Team Member


Therefore, encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing. 1 Thessalonians 5:11 

 

The Tandana Foundation is a non-profit organization that supports community initiatives in Ecuador's Otavalo Canton and Mali's Bandiagara District and offers intercultural volunteer experiences. Its community initiatives support community members working toward their dreams of education, health, food security, water resources, environmental conservation, and income generation. 

 

The seeds for The Tandana Foundation were planted in 1998, when Founding Director Anna Taft spent four months in the rural community of Panecillo, Ecuador, teaching English to local elementary students and forming relationships with many people there. Tandana was founded in 2004, and in 2006, the Foundation sponsored its first official community project in Ecuador. At that time, students from The Traveling School helped to paint the community center in the community of Agualongo.

 

Tandana is not about "helping the poor" or imposing a developmentalist worldview. Instead, its goal is to create and nurture respectful and responsible relationships among people of different cultures. It believes that giving and receiving are inherent parts of relationships and contributing community initiatives—a great way to make friends.


In the last 15 years, the Foundation has collaborated with 27 communities in Ecuador and 102 communities in Mali. A few highlights of its achievements include over 5,000 dental appointments; 9,000 rural residents having access to a new health center; more than 8,000 medical appointments; 52 partner schools in Ecuador, Mali, and North America; 297 secondary scholars; 60 post-secondary scholars; and over 130 community projects supported in Mali and Ecuador.

 

Members and friends of First Community Church have assisted in the work of The Tandana Foundation through our Mission Team grants process. There are many ways to help advance the work of this Foundation, including donations and the upcoming Legacy of Hope Celebration (November 11 in Columbus). More information about The Tandana Foundation can be located at https://tandanafoundation.org/.

 

Also, there is a fantastic opportunity to see the work of The Tandana Foundation through its intercultural programs in Otavalo, Ecuador! Two trips in the future will do this: Trips with Intention for Families (July 22-29, 2024) and Intentions for Individuals (Feb. 3-10, 2025). More information about these trips and projects of The Tandana Foundation can also be located at https://tandanafoundation.org/.

 

If you want more information about First Community Church and its other Mission programs or want to join the Mission Teams, please email us at mission@FCchurch.com

Birthday Bags for Heart to Heart Clients

Everyone deserves to have a cake on their birthday! The Wednesday evening Midweek Missions kids are making Birthday Bags for clients at Heart to Heart food pantry. You can help their mission by donating: 

 

  • Boxed cake mix 
  • Canned frosting 
  • Boxed birthday candles 
  • Disposable foil cake pans 
  • Gift bags large enough to hold the mix, frosting, and candles.    


Donations can be dropped off in the marked boxes outside the Rose Wing doors at First Community North or in the coat room donation center at First Community South by April 14. 

Bible 101

What is the Bible? Why do we say we take it seriously, not literally? It’s true-- This 2600-year-old collection of stories, poetry, and letters is full of wisdom and teachings that have a whole lot to do with you and me in the 21st century! We just need to know how to read it and engage with it—both are meant to be done together in community! Join Rev. Mary Kate Buchanan and Judy Westman for Bible 101, Sunday mornings at 9-9:45 am before worship in Burkhart Chapel. Bring your own Bible or download the free BibleGateway app to your phone and select the New Revised Standard Version Updated Edition (NRSVUE) as your default Bible. 


Advance registration is requested. Please email or call Jane Torbica jtorbica@FCchurch.com, (614) 488-0681, Ext. 235

Down on the Farm

Save the date for First Community’s annual Down on the Farm event Friday, April 19, from 6-7:30 pm. You will find us at the west end of the North Campus parking lot. Come to enjoy snacks, activities, and a petting zoo. The evening will end with professional storyteller, Erica Carlson. The event is free and open to the public. 

Mary Evans Child Development Center and First Community Preschool Now Enrolling

Email Leigh Anne Easterling
Email Alayna Pierce

Women's Spring Luncheon

The Women’s Guild is proud to host the Women’s Spring Luncheon on Saturday, April 20, at 11 am in Grace Hall at FC North. The luncheon will feature humorist, musician, and inspirational speaker Mary Miller.  


As a speaker, Mary combines her standup comedy and improv comedy background with music and an inspirational message about overcoming life’s challenges. After years of experience touring on the comedy club circuit, sharing the comedy stage with such names as Tim Allen, Bill Engvall, Brad Garrett, and Victoria Jackson, Mary shifted her focus to creating clean comedy material and music to perform at various venues.  


Mary founded the “Motor City Women of Comedy” and co-produced highly successful comedy shows for five years to benefit “Gilda’s Club of Metro Detroit,” created by Gilda Radnor to create a “community and home” so that no one needs to go through cancer alone. She is also known for creating, co-producing, and performing the “Laughing in the Face of Cancer” fundraiser comedy shows to benefit the Stephanie Spielman Comprehensive Breast Center at OSU.  


Mary was selected by Sunny 95, WSNY-FM, as one of their “20 Outstanding Women of 2017 for her work in the community and her charity, Fill Your Cups, which provides free prosthetics to women in need of surgery. A 15-year THRIVER, Mary knows firsthand the power of prayer and the healing power of laughter and music amid life’s challenges. 


Tickets for the event are $25. RSVP by April 13 by clicking the link below to purchase tickets and register or by contacting Jane Torbica via email at jtorbica@FCchurch.com or by phone at (614) 488-0681, ext. 235.  

Register Today!

Akita Fun Day

Join us for some spring fun at Camp Akita (29746 Logan-Hornsmill Rd., Logan, OH 43138) on Sunday, April 21! Drop in anytime from 1 – 4 pm to enjoy open-house-style fun: hike the trails, canoe on the lake, make some family-friendly crafts, join in with some group campfire songs at the Amphitheatre, take a hayride out to the Adventure Complex, climb the Alpine Tower, and try the Giant Swing! Or just come to relax and enjoy the new spring foliage with friends and family. 


For directions, please click here. For more information, email the Columbus Akita offices or call (614) 488-0681. 

April Blood Drive

Sign-Up to Donate Here

Lunch and Learn Event

Dr. John Weigand Discusses the Importance of Sleep at

Lunch & Learn Event 


The Older Adult Ministry Team was pleased to host Dr. John Weigand, a gerontologist and the Medical Director at the Ohio Department of Health and the Ohio Department of Aging, for a discussion on the various aspects and importance of sleep. The luncheon event, titled “Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep, Understanding the 1/3 of Our Lives Spent with Our Eyes Closed,” was made possible through a grant from the First Community Foundation. 


In simple language and with a dose of humor, Dr. Weigand discussed various aspects of sleep, including the work of William Dement, considered the father of sleep research, explaining sleep processes.  


Some interesting facts that Dr. Weigand provided were related to naps. He presented details of a NASA research project showing that a 26-minute nap synchronized with the pilot’s “nap zone” improved performance by 34%, while another study demonstrated that cognitive functioning was boosted by 6 hours by taking a 45-minute nap. Another research example was that a 30-minute nap in the afternoon before staying up all night prevented a loss of performance during that night. 


Also of interest was that a Boston University Professor, William Anthony, promoted National Napping Day on the Monday after Daylight Savings Time, indicating that statistically, there are more fatal motor vehicle accidents and 24% more heart attacks than on other Mondays. 


The presentation addressed how age affects sleep. With age, the ability to sleep decreases, and the deeper levels of sleep also decrease. He indicated that lighter sleep levels account for most sleep in older adults. 


Click the video link below to watch the full video presentation, which includes important details relating to the processes of sleep, the stages of sleep, diagnosing a sleep disorder, information on Circadian Rhythm Disturbances, medical illnesses associated with insomnia, and the audience Q&A. 


We look forward to welcoming Dr. Weigand back soon with additional relevant topics for our life together! 


(Click the video link below to watch full presentation.)

Elder Wisdom

Wednesday Morning Fellowship Group

Older Adult Day at Camp Akita

Biannual outings to First Community’s Camp Akita allow older adults to enjoy the amazing beauty and wonder of spring and fall in this sacred space at their own pace! Whether going to Akita for the first time or for those who go for regular visits, there is always a new experience awaiting, including making new friends and spending quality time with those near and dear. 


Our next day trip to Akita for our older adults will be Tuesday, May 7. It will be a day filled with fellowship, lunch, nature, and a message of hope and inspiration on Vesper Hill. We will meet at North at 8:45 am and leave at 9 am sharp. From there, you can either take the bus or drive separately. The bus will arrive back to North by 4 pm.


We look forward to seeing you there! Register here by 4 pm, April 25. For more information, contact Jane Torbica at (614) 488-0681 ext. 235. 

Register Today!

Women's Guild Second Annual

Mini Garage Sale

SPRING HAS SPRUNG! And it's time for SPRING CLEANING! It's time to clear out the things that you no longer want or need and then plan to bring them to the Women's Guild 2nd Annual Mini Garage Sale. The Sale is being held from 9 am to 3 pm on Saturday, May 4, in conjunction with the Grandview Community Garage Sale. Donation items can be brought to the South Parking Lot between 4 pm and 8 pm on Friday, May 3, or very early Saturday morning. Donors are asked to help unload and display items as you are able.  


While most items will be sold by "Donation Only," if you have something special, feel free to price it. At the end of the Sale, all unsold items will either go to the Trading Post or be picked up by the Volunteers of America. If you want to keep any of your items, please plan to pick them up before 3 pm.  


As you can imagine, such a sale requires lots of hands to help with set-up, sales, tear-down, and clean-up so that everything is ready for church on Sunday morning. You can sign up here to help.  


Of course, we hope you will plan to return on Saturday to check out and purchase some of the items your neighbors no longer need! 

Sign-Up Here!

Coffee with Glen

Email Kristy Glaser

Hiring Full Time Preschool Teacher

Email Leigh Anne Easterling

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