First United Methodist Church - Wausau Wisconsin
Monday, December 06, 2021
Live and Share God's Love


UMW Holiday Cookie Orders

Don't forget to order your prepacked Christmas cookies by Dec. 6th. The order form insert and payments may be dropped off at the church office or contact Barbara Ritchie (1-715-205-4622). The cookies may be picked up the evening of Dee. 10. Proceeds benefitting women, youth and children. UMW is looking for cookie bakers and if you are willing to share your baking skills, contact Barbara Ritchie for additional information. 

Confirmation Statements of Faith

Pastor Rebecca Voss with the 2021 Confirmands Logan Rohland, Jayden Voss, Peter Johnson, Gideon Adams, Michael Marzu, Oliver Hornby
I believe in God the Father. I believe in Jesus and the Holy Spirit. I believe that the Son will keep shining with hope and that the grass will grow again after a winter and finally I believe that good will overcome evil.
Gideon Adams

I believe in God who can be described as a Trinity: the Father, the creator of all, the Lord, our shepherd and protector, the Spirit, the movement and breath of all, I believe in the relationship of the mentor and student, the mentor providing material for the student to learn, the student doing their best to learn, and pass the knowledge that was learned, I believe in the maintenance and protection of relationships of my neighbors, family, and friends, for the protection of relationships allows healthy relationships to flourish and new ones to form,
I believe in the way of life, where things grow and blossom, where things burn and die, and where there are almost always equal reactions and consequences, I believe in the afterlife, where there is a place for us when we die.

Oliver Hornby

I believe God, the creator of heaven and earth, is the creator of every being on earth. I believe that Jesus died on the cross to forgive our sins. I believe he will deliver all from evil. I believe that God is love. I believe God loves everyone no matter their past. I believe that God shows his love by helping those in need. I believe his kingdom is forever eternal.
Peter Johnson

I believe in God and the Holy Spirit. I believe in Jesus Christ, a teacher and counselor to me. Going to camp at Pine Lake really helped ignite my faith in God. The nature and small group really helped me learn more about God. I feel called to use my gift of music to serve the church and to serve others.
Michael Marzu

The Trinity consists of Christ, the Creator, and the Holy Spirit. Christ, or Jesus, is a messenger sent by God to help us follow the word of God. The Creator is God, the one who gave us the gift of life. And lastly, the Holy Spirit, is God's voice in our mind. It is what God is doing today, guiding those who can hear him. God wants us to spread love throughout the world, by doing random acts of kindness for others, such as giving things and services, without expecting anything in return. If we do this, we can truly be happy.
Logan Rohland

I believe that God created this world and has made each of us with love. I believe in following Jesus by reading the Bible and living the way that he teaches. I believe that God came to earth as Jesus, who gave us the Holy Spirit to help us lead a good life. God gave us the Church to help us grow in our faith and help others understand God.
Jayden Voss

Looking for Christmas presents AND away to support FUMC?

Consider giving gift cards. You can purchase them through the FUMC SCRIP program and a percentage of the purchase price is paid back to the church. The card(s) cost you face value, the gift recipient can use them to buy whatever they really want from almost any major retail store, restaurant, or online seller, ...And FUMC benefits. Everyone wins!

We have now set up an electronic account with the SCRIP provider, so delivery time is much quicker. You'll get your cards in the next week! We would like to place an order after church Sunday, December 12th, you will be able to pick up your cards on Sunday, December 19th, just in time for Christmas! Please consider supporting FUMC in this painless way. Remember: the more cards you buy, the more we earn!
Thanks you, Mark Johnson

Awning and Concrete Repair Project

The Trustees would like to make the entrances to the church from the parking lot safer, the signage clearer, and the north side of the building more visually welcoming. After reviewing our options, we would like to repair the concrete, widen the slope to the entrance by the Sanctuary and install large powder-coated aluminum awnings that completely cover the accessible entries to the two main entrances from parking lot. Both awnings would have a fascia with 8" lettering to lead guests to the right door. the

This project will cost about $20,000 in donations to protect better our most-used entrances and welcome people to our church. Please write "awnings" in a check memo with any support you can give or see Bruce Brandenburg or Pastor Rebecca with questions. Thank you!

Sanctuary Awning 


First UMC Journey to the Holy Land – January 18-27, 2022

I am excited to invite our congregation and community to join me on a journey to Jordan, Israel, and Pales- tine with the Society for Biblical Studies (SBS). I first traveled to the Holy Land with SBS almost 5 years ago, and I’m eager to share this transformational experience with more people.

SBS is led by Rev. Dr. Peter Miano, who is an Elder in the New England Conference and served many years as the UM missionary in Bethlehem. His extensive familiarity and connections with leaders in the Holy Land, fluency in Hebrew and Arabic, and commitment to providing sustainable and peace-building travel, experiences, and relationships is superior to any other Holy Land programs or tours available.

The other big advantage of joining this journey is the small size. Our group will likely be a total of 15-20 people (from Wausau and other parts of the US). All the other tourist-focused groups with fleets of huge buses busy taking people to gift shops missed so many sights and stories that we got to experience. For in- stance, on my last trip, Peter had connections to get our group inside the Dome of the Rock, complete with a local expert guiding us, which no other tours could do.

A misconception many people have about traveling to the Holy Land is that it is dangerous. Unfortunately, the news doesn’t report the whole story or big picture, and that results in a lot of inaccurate perceptions. The fact is there is far less violence and crime and overall risk in Jordan, Israel, and Palestine than there is in the US, including Wisconsin. Who would have guessed it is safer going to this part of the Middle East than it is vacationing in Florida?

The other safety question is health/COVID related. As long as you are fully vaccinated and follow recom- mended health safety practices, data shows that it is safe to travel internationally. If there is a “force majeur” that prevents general travel to the area, SBS will refund the cost of the trip as the vendors refund them. Travel insurance is also available.

The cost of the journey, including travel from the US, hotels, sights, and most food is $3,198 for 10 days, or $4,587 if you’d like to add a 4-day extension. My husband and I are only going for the main 10-day journey but encourage you to add the 4-day extension if your time and finances allow it. Please call, email, or visit me if you are interested in going, and I will answer questions (or get answers from Peter) and help you with the paperwork. This is an incredible life- and faith-transforming journey, and I hope to experience it with you!

Itinerary for the Alumni Invitational Holy Land Journey

Jan. 18 - Depart USA (likely from MSP)
Jan. 19 - Arrive Amman, Orientation & Introductions. Overnight in Amman
Jan. 20 - Theme: Christian Heritage in Jordan. Field trip: Madaba, Mt. Nebo (Dt. 34), Old Amman, souk al balad, view theatre and nymphaeum, Jordan Museum, driving tour of Amman. PM forum: meeting with Jordanian Christians. Overnight in Amman
Jan. 21 - Theme: The Mountain of the Gilead, the Jordan Valley. Field trip: Jerash (Mark 7:31), Ajloun Castle, Pella (time permitting), cross Jordan River at Bet Shean. Overnight in Galilee
Jan. 22 - Theme: Jesus’ Ministry in Lower Galilee. Field trip: Nazareth, Basilica of the Annunciation or Church of St. Gabriel, (Matt 2:23, Luke 1:26-38, 4:16-30, 1 Kings 21, John 4: 46-54), Meeting with Jona- thon Cook (journalist), Sepphoris (time permitting). PM forum: TBD. Overnight in Galilee
Jan. 23 - Theme: Jesus Ministry and Resurrection Around the Sea of Galilee. Field trip: boat ride on the Sea of Galilee, Capernaum, Tabgha, (John 21), Mt. of the Beatitudes (Luke 13:10-21, Matt 5- 7, 11:20- 24, Mark 4-6, John 21), Bethsaida, Wadi Hammam (time permitting). PM forum: TBD. Overnight in Jericho
Jan. 24 - Theme: Birth & Baptism. Field trip: Qasr al Yehud (baptismal site), Qumran, Masada, The Mount of Ol- ives, Dominus Flevit, Garden of Gethsemane. PM Forum: TBD. Overnight in Bethlehem
Jan. 25 - Theme: Bethlehem and Its Environs at the Time of Jesus. Field trip: Bethlehem, Old City walking tour, Church of the Nativity (Lk 2; Mt 2), Herodion, Tent of Nations, Palestinian refugee camp. PM forum: TBD. Over- night in Bethlehem
Jan. 26 - Theme: Jerusalem and its Environs at the Time of Jesus. Field trip: 8:00 AM Temple Mount/Haram esh Sherrif, Church of the Holy Sepulchre (Mt. 27-28; John 20) Western Wall/Jewish Quarter, Via Dolorosa. Overnight in Bethlehem
Jan. 27 - Return to USA –OR-- continue with the elective The Wonders of Petra & Jordan
Theme: The Negev and Wadi Araba. Field trip: Hebron (Gen 13, 23), Cave of Macphelah, Ibrahimi Mosque, The Negev, Ein Avdat overview, Maktesh Ramon & overview, Araba crossing into Jordan. Overnight in Wadi Rum.
Jan. 28 - Theme: Desert Exploration. Field trip: Wadi Rum jeep safari (optional, additional cost), Al Beidha (Neolithic settlement), Siq al Barid (Little Petra). Overnight Wadi Musa
Jan. 29 - Theme: Exploration and Wonder. Field trip: Full day exploration of Petra. Overnight Wadi Musa Jan. 30 - Theme: The Desert Highway & the King’s Highway. Field trip: Shoback Castle (overview). Overnight Amman
Jan. 31 - Return to USA


NEW PRODUCTS-- Mission-Driven—in the UMW cabinet!

Coffees--Just in for Spring!

Organic LoveBuzz, med-dark roast whole bean ($8.00/12 oz) New!
Organic Mama Tierra light roast ground coffee from Oaxaca, Mexico ($10.00/16 oz bag) New!

We still offer 12 oz bags of ground decaf—$9.00 and regular Cafe Salvador—$8.00

Prefer Tea?

All varieties of our organic teas are $4.00/box. Try the English Breakfast for a little boost or Jasmine Green (New!). If you want a relaxing herbal cup, try Rooibos, Ginger or Peppermint (New!).

Chocolate treats for your Easter basket!

Pick your favorite organic, Fair Trade chocolate bars for $3.00 ea. in these flavors:
Dark Chocolate Lemon Ginger
Dark Chocolate Orange
Dark Chocolate Mint Crunch (New!)
Panama Extra Dark
Dark Chocolate Almond & Sea Salt (New!)
Milk Chocolate
Chocolate with Coconut Milk (vegan, soy and gluten-free) (New!)
Your purchase helps our UMW mission projects, UMCOR, and supports farmer-owned coffee cooperatives in Central America and Mexico, as well as small tea farms in India, Sri Lanka and South Africa.

Thank you for shopping BY CAUSE!

If you want to learn more about staying safe on-line here are a few links to some good information....

 A few more tips on keeping your computer safe.
Always update your operating system (Windows 10 or Apple OSX) and keep it updated by installing the Security Updates that Microsoft or Apple sends you. Both Microsoft and Apple have gotten very good at protecting your PC or Mac if you keep them updated. That means when you get a software update notifications from them you should install them, especially those that are titled Security Updates.
Consider installing some Anti-Virus software if you have not already. If you have Charter/Spectrum as your internet provider they offer  FREE Security Suite Anti-virus software to their customers. Other options are McAfee or Norton Lifelock, both involve monthly fees.
If your PC seems to be running slower than it used to you may have been infected with Malware or Adware. There's some excellent free software that can be used to scan your hard drive a find it and quarantine/remove it.
Here's the link:

Prayer Corner

We grieve this month at the loss of our long time members:

Roger Mittenzwei, who died on November 7th
Linda Leighton, who died November 17th.

Sophie Marschall, who died on November 19th.


Savvy Seniors will meet on Monday December 6th, at 11:30 at the Jalapenos Mexican Restaurant, downtown Wausau.

Meet Our New Members

Tim White, Leigh Ann White, Jan Clowes, Collette Brown, James & Pastor Rebecca Voss

Collette Brown: My day job is a teacher who works with kids needing extra help in reading. I love to travel, hike and read. I am excited to continue to grow in my faith at First UMC in part by volunteering with literacy and other efforts to assist the new refugees in our community.

Mary Brown
: I am happy to be joining a church that is following Jesus by working to take care of the poor and others who need help in our community. I am a huge Milwaukee Brewers fan! I enjoy reading and flower gardening.

Jan Clowes:
I moved to Wausau, from Beloit, WI in December 2019, after retiring from Beloit Health Systems. I was born and raised in Beloit and attended First Baptist Church in Beloit all my life. I moved to Wausau to be near my daughter and her family which includes a 5 year old granddaughter. I also have a son and daughter-in-low and two more granddaughters, ages 4 & 8, in Sun Prairie, WI. I am enjoying retirement and getting involved in the mission of this church. In my spare time I love music, reading, sewing, biking, being outdoors and kayaking the lakes of northern Wisconsin.

James Voss
: I am married to Pastor Rebecca Voss and together we have seven children. My background is in sales and marketing (mostly real estate), but I became a Street Outreach Specialist with Northcentral CAP services because I want to help less fortunate people. I am a bit introverted about my walk with Jesus but am intentional about becoming more Christ-like. I look forward to serving on the Trustees committee and getting to know more people at church and in Wausau.

Leigh Ann White:
My husband Tim and I moved here a year ago from the Chicago area. As empty nesters, we picked Wausau to live for the hiking, biking, and kayaking so accessible from our front door. We’ve been married for 27 years and 2 amazing children, Brennan 24 and Jack 21. I have worked in the optical field for 30 years. I look forward to getting to know all of you as we learn, grow and encourage each other in our walks as Christ follows.

Tim White
: Married to lovely Leigh Ann for 27 years with two cool sons, Brennan, 24 and Jack, 21 who both live up in Marquette, MI. I’m more excited about following Jesus than ever! From Central Wisconsin and back to live, work and give as best I can

We will be using poinsettias to decorate our Sanctuary foe Christmas. If you would like to donate toward one or more flowers, the cost is $12 (small) and $25 (large) per plant– but any amount is welcome. About 20 of the poinsettias will be given to homebound members of our congregation on December 12th.

Random Thoughts

by Mike Zahn
December 2021

MCCI "A Gift Card"

"For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands. For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love, and of self-discipline.  2 Timothy 1:6-7

Have you ever received something like a left-handed bacon stretcher as a gift for Christmas? The thought is nice, but what am I going to do with it? I'm right-handed! Sometimes the perfect gift is a gift card, one that you can use anywhere for anything you need. MCCI (Missional Church Consultation Initiative, or My Church Can Improve) is like the gift card to our congregation from our Conference. It provides resources to do what we as congregation decide are our greatest needs. MCCI is not giving us a left-handed bacon stretcher that will sit in the back of our utensil drawer until we can rummage sale it away. Instead, it is helping us focus on what God is already leading us to do in our community. It will help us execute in the best way possible whatever plans we make. It will help us fan into flame the gift of God!

MCCI has written "prescriptions" for our church, but the "prescriptions" have really come from us. There are "town hall" meetings scheduled this month and we will meet as a congregation to vote on the recommendations on Sunday, December 19th Please try to attend one of the town meetings, and plan to be there for the church conference on the 19th We'd really like to hear from you, and your presence will make difference- we want to use our gift card wisely! Please feel free to call, text, or email me with any questions. Mike Zahn 715-470-1957

We hope everyone can come to one of the three Town Hall meetings we're having in the next few weeks to discuss your hopes and/or hesitations regarding these prescriptions. Here are the Town Hall dates;

Wed., Dec. 1, 6pm - BK Smith Room
Sun., Dec. 5, 9am - Parlor
Mon., Dec. 13, 1pm - Parlor



Display Cases

Would you like to show us your treasures in the church display case outside the office? We would love to see it!

Artwork; Collections; Antiques; Photos; anything you would like to share.

Check out the beautiful bunny collection by Andrea Anderson currently in the display cases.