News

  • COC Volunteer Orientation

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    Published: Feb. 10, 2023

    Are you as excited for the Community Outreach Center to fully open up as we are? Then come on over and learn about volunteering and join a COC Volunteer Orientation to help us get moving!

    All of our outreach programs depend on volunteer time, energy and labor. We would not be able to offer our neighborhood the same kind of hospitality, solidarity and compassion without our dedicated community of servant-leaders. Learn about ways we can help as a community, and important safety information.

    Questions? Contact the Rev. Pat Dupont at pdupont@asburyfirst.org or at 585-271-1050 x136.

  • Support UMCOR's Earthquake Response

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    Published: Feb. 8, 2023

    UMCOR has an International branch that addresses the devastating natural disasters, including what is happening in Turkey and Syria. UMCOR has released an initial solidarity grant to a longstanding humanitarian partner, International Blue Crescent (IBC), which has offices in Turkey. The grant will provide tents, heaters, blankets, warm clothes, ready to eat meals and basic first aid kits.

    A 7.8 magnitude earthquake struck southern Turkey at 4:17 a.m. on Monday, Feb. 6, 2023, the most powerful earthquake recorded since 1939. In the hours that followed, at least 78 aftershocks were reported, followed by a second earthquake of 7.5 magnitude. More than 5,000 people were killed, with deaths expected to rise. 

    The earthquake also heavily impacted northwest Syria, where 4.1 million people depend on humanitarian assistance. The majority are women and children. At this time, Syrian communities are simultaneously facing an ongoing cholera outbreak and extreme winter weather events, including heavy rain and snow. The humanitarian response is overstretched due to the devastation and cold weather. 

    Financial contributions make the biggest impact, especially when dealing with international disasters. Support UMCOR with donations 
to the International Disaster Fund. 

    Click here to Donate to UMCOR

     

  • Highlight on the Help Me Read Program and Founder

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    Published: Feb. 8, 2023

    Check out this article from Spectrum News about the founder of the Help Me Read program, Bishop David J. Singleton. Click here to read the article.

    The Help Me Read Program is a one-on-one tutoring program held at School 17 and School 45. Asbury First volunteers tutor students at these Rochester City Schools in reading. Asbury First also holds a yearly school supply drive to help students get the necessary materials needed for a successful school year. Click here to learn more and to sign up to help!

  • As the Spirit Moves Us Begins New Study

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    Published: Feb. 8, 2023

    Sundays, 9:45-10:45, 1050 Teak Room

    On Sunday, February 12, this class will begin a new study based on the book, The Women of Easter by Liz Curtis Higgs. All are invited to join us on a six-week journey of discovery into the lives of some of our faith’s original female pastors. In a very personal way, Ms. Higgs takes the reader on Christ’s journey through the experiences of Mary of Bethany, Mary of Nazareth, and Mary Magdalene. All three women are transformed by the Savior, and we will share in their faith journeys. For more information, please contact Mike Mullin at mmullin@asburyfirst.org or at 585-271-1050 x105.

  • KOP: Urgent Need for Caring Circle Members

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    Published: Feb. 7, 2023

    URGENT NEED FOR CARING CIRCLE MEMBERS and NEW CARING CIRCLE TRAINING!


    We have need for TEN CARING CIRCLES to help support eight recently arrived families, and two more arriving on soon. There are single men, couples, and families in need.

    We still need seasoned volunteers who can get new volunteers and families off on the right foot. Even if you only have a few days a month that you can assist, we can really use your support.

    Please email Kristen at kristen@keepingourpromise.org if you would like to be assigned to a Caring Circle, even if your ability/availability is limited. We cannot support these individuals and families without each of you!

    Caring Circle members are a support network and friendly face to help Afghans acclimate to the Rochester area. Duties range from weekly home visits, outings to explore all that Rochester has to offer, occasional rides for appointments and to get groceries, and familiarizing Afghans with common daily practices like paying bills, obtaining a library card, and more. Caring Circles can expect their support role to last approximately six months, though friendships are formed that last a lifetime.

  • Close to Home: Black History Month Sermon Series

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    Published: Feb. 6, 2023

    Join us in February as we focus on Rochester Black History. Using scripture lessons from the book of Jonah — which is about someone not wanting to look at their own city (Nineveh) and what happens when we fail to do so — we will delve into a deep look at our own city's Black history. The first week will be about the great migration to Rochester and the challenges that came with it. The following weeks will continue to tell stories too often forgotten.

    Bulletin cover features: Each week we will highlight a local Black artist or their work to showcase the incredible talent in our city, curated by Rashaad Parker of the Flower City Arts Center. Check out the inside, back page to learn more about each artist and their impact on the city and art scene.

  • NEW!!! Asbury First Library BIBLIOCART

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    Published: Feb. 6, 2023

    1st Sunday of the Month, Gathering Center near piano, Bibliocart

    Need a good book?

    Look for the newly added Library Bibliocart the first Sunday of every month in the gathering space by the piano. Books featured here are new purchases, the event or topic of the month, and staff recommended books. They can be checked out right at the Bibliocart staffed by Library committee members. 

    Also, stop by for a visit. The Church Library is just off the Gathering Center at the entrance to the Education Wing. The library is free and open for your use when the church is open. Help yourself to materials of your choice by simply signing your name, phone number and date. Books may be borrowed for a period of three weeks, but may be easily renewed. 

    If you need a book for a devotion for your group, a Bible story, entertainment for children, a Sunday School class lesson or a look at a variety of different Bibles, the church library can provide all of these and more. Our library collection of 4,000 plus books, DVDs, and videos are available and may be checked out free of charge on an easy, self-serve honor system.

    The collection ranges from information on religion and science, the Bible, theology, spirituality, church history, and Christian Education topics to books specializing in parenting, marriage, aging, sexuality, diversity of peoples, and conservation of the earth. There are books for children, youth, large print needs, holidays and special topics, and a variety of fiction and non-fiction books. 

  • Ash Wednesday Pan-Methodist Service

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    Published: Feb. 6, 2023

    Wednesday, February 22, 7 pm, In-Person and Livestream

    Join us as we begin the holy season of Lent together with our pan-Methodist siblings from around Rochester. We are delighted to hold this service in person again and look forward to worshiping with Baber African Methodist Episcopal Church, Memorial African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church, and New Bethel Christian Methodist Episcopal Church.

  • An Invitation to Transformation

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    Published: Feb. 6, 2023

    Wednesdays in March, 6-7 pm, Fellowship Hall and Zoom (zoom.us/j/8347173468 PWD 200)

    Led by The Rev. Frederick David Carr, Ph.D.

    Masks are required for this event.

    This March, we invite you on a Lenten journey of Transformation as we consider some of the letters of Paul from our New Testament. This class was inspired by Dr. Carr’s new book, Being and Becoming: Human Transformation in the Letters of Paul, which is available in our church library. Dr. Carr is an Assistant Professor of Biblical Studies at Northeastern Seminary, and he joined the Asbury First community when his family relocated to Rochester in 2019. We are excited to have the opportunity to highlight David’s work, and we hope that you will join us in March as we consider how Paul’s words may continue to invite us to transform our lives today. 
    Questions and comments may be directed to Mike Mullin at mmullin@asburyfirst.org.

  • The Columbarium

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    Published: Jan. 27, 2023

    For those who don't already know what a columbarium is, here is a brief explanation:

    "A columbarium is a sacred, consecrated location where urns of cremated remains are placed, completing the circle of life." 

    Asbury First is a place of worship, community and celebration of life from baptism to confirmation, marriage and memorial services. Members of the congregation have expressed an interest in having a columbarium at Asbury First for many years. Learn how Asbury First can be your final resting place. 

    For more information, please call 585-271-1050 or email columbarium@asburyfirst.org

  • Methodism 202: The UMC and LGBTQ+

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    Published: Jan. 27, 2023

    Wednesdays, February 1, 5, and 8; 6-7 pm in Fellowship Hall, and Zoom (zoom.us/j/8347173468)

    Led by The Rev. Stephen M. Cady II, Ph.D. You may have heard some of the rumblings about The United Methodist Church splitting — or more aptly, splintering. You may know that this stems from decades of debate concerning the full inclusion of our LGBTQ+ siblings in Christ. And perhaps you would like to feel a bit more informed on this topic, as it continues to be news-worthy — even outside the context of United Methodism. All are invited to join us for the first three Wednesdays in February as we highlight some of the conflicts and challenges facing The United Methodist Church today. We will spend one week looking at the history of what brought us to this point, one week highlighting what is actually happening right now, and one week thinking about what The United Methodist Church might look like in the future. We hope you will join us for these compelling conversations.

    You may reach out to Mike Mullin at mmullin@asburyfirst.org with any questions and comments.

  • Souper Bowl Sunday — Youth Fundraiser

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    Published: Jan. 27, 2023

    Sunday, February 12, 12 pm, 1040 Welcome Hall

    The Youth of Asbury First will once again be selling soup on Super Bowl Sunday to raise money for their 2023 summer mission trips. This year, our high school youth will be traveling to Tucson, Arizona to have an immersive service-learning experience on our country’s southern border. Our middle school will once again be volunteering with our Vacation Bible School program, and with other local mission agencies. Following their week of service, our middle school youth will travel to Niagara Falls, Canada for an overnight of fun and fellowship. To help defray the costs of these trips, our youth have made soup to sell to our congregation. You can show your support — and enjoy a delicious meal — by purchasing a quart of soup for $10 from our youth on Sunday, February 12.

    Questions and comments may be sent to Mike Mullin at mmullin@asburyfirst.org.

  • 2022 High School Mission Trip Presentation

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    Published: Jan. 27, 2023

    Sunday, February 12, 9:45-10:45 in Fellowship Hall

    Led by the youth and adult mission trip participants 2022 marked the first time in three years that our high school youth were able to embark on a summer mission trip. We spent a week working in Northeastern Kentucky helping to repair homes, and learning more about the Appalachia region. We are looking forward to sharing our experiences with Asbury First, and hope that you will join us in Fellowship Hall on February 12.

    Please contact Mike Mullin at mmullin@asburyfirst.org with any comments or questions.

  • ESWA Super Bowl Sunday Tamale Benefit

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    Published: Jan. 27, 2023

    Economic conditions for the working poor are worsening, and more people are on the edge of economic disaster. The time for action is now, and, since 1976, Eastern Service Workers Association (ESWA) has built a strong organization fighting to end government policies that put profits above people. ESWA unites low-income workers, students, professionals, local business owners, and others to forge a long-term solution.

    To raise the necessary support for the Campaign, ESWA members and volunteers are holding our annual Super Bowl Sunday Tamale Benefit. Chicken, pork, and vegan tamales are available on Super Bowl Sunday and are a suggested donation is $20 per dozen or $10 per 1⁄2 dozen. Order now while supplies last! Also, for those who would like to volunteer to help make tamales, we will need help on Thursday 2/9/23, Friday 2/10/23, & Saturday 2/11/23. We will be turning Corpus Christi Church at 864 Main St. into
    a ‘Tamale Factory’ for those 3 days!

    Please call ESWA’s office at 234 Bay St. to schedule yourself or your group at (585) 654-9640. Thanks for your support!

  • Annual Church Conference Materials

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    Published: Jan. 26, 2023

    This Sunday, immediately following the 11 am service, we will have our Annual Church Conference during which time we will vote to approve our budget, our nomination’s report, and minutes from previous meetings. Click the links below for the materials.

    The Attorney General’s office for the State of New York has informed the Upper New York Conference of the United Methodist Church that in order for a Church Conference to be counted as “official” it has to be either fully in person or fully virtual, but not hybrid. Because we have not had an “official” Church Conference since January of 2020 due to the pandemic, we feel the need to make sure that this one is in proper order. To that end, the official portion of this Church Conference will be in person. However, because we honor and care about those who are with us virtually, we will still provide a virtual voting option that we will report in real time, but which we cannot hold as official. As always, only members are allowed to vote during a Church Conference.

    To vote virtually (but unofficially) on Sunday go to:

    The pertinent documents for our Annual Church Conference are available on our website at asburyfirst.org/church-conference, including: