First Church is actively involved in the University of Knoxville Wesley Foundation. In addition to providing meals for the students, we recently renovated their kitchen, have gone on a joint Bike Ride on the Virginia Creeper, have renovated their kitchen, hosted a Chili Luncheon as a fundraiser for one of their mission trips, and are planning a joint mission trip with the students to Costa Rica next summer.
Pond Gap Elementary School
First UMC is a proud supporter of Pond Gap Elementary School, one of the lowest income school in Knox County. This past fall we collected school supplies for the classrooms and provided the Teachers with breakfast during one of their in-service days. Look for more ways to sponsor Pond Gap coming soon!
Wesley House is a Christian ministry established in 1907 to identify and build on the strengths of individuals and families to create a stronger community. We currently provides academic, emotional, and spiritual support to 100+ at-risk inner-city students and fellowship and support to 25 deserving inner-city senior citizens. This past spring First Church put on a Spring Break VBS for the students at Wesley House and our UMW provide several activities for the seniors at Wesley House throughout the year.
Power of Play - Rocky Top is the brainchild of several volunteers who've worked together for a number of years and dedicated themselves to providing inclusive play opportunities for children and young adults in the Knoxville area. We come from many different backgrounds and experiences - parents of children with special needs, children of parents with special needs, therapists, teachers, students, tinkerers - but we all share a common belief that "when we play together we stay together!" Through experience we've also come to realize that sometimes inclusive play needs a helping hand in order to get to the point where meaningful participation is a possibility. We want to be that helping hand - wherever it's needed - because by helping others we help ourselves., Inclusive play promotes friendship, empathy and acceptance; which are the strong roots that can help a community to weather all storms.
Power of Play has a workshop in our Parish House basement where they are working on building some awesome wheelchairs. You can join us on Thursday Nights to help decorate a very special wheelchair for a young boy to use at our Fall Festival - which will be accessible for ALL CHILDREN!
First Church members deliver meals to the homebound every other Friday through Mobile Meals. In addition, we collect items for Christmas Gift Bags for Mobile Meals recipients each Christmas!
Our next mission is local. We are helping stock the Fish Food Pantry during the month of November. The Fish Pantry has been a mission of First Church for many years and we are going to build from food buckets into an entire room stocked with food for needy families! We helped 50 families in Liberia, now we will reach out to over 300 families right here in Knoxville! Become a worker in God's store house! And all the people said, "Amen!"
Salvation Army Angel Tree
Each year First Church participates in the Salvation Army Angel Tree program, providing Christmas gifts for local children in need. Look for the Tree in the Narthex in early November!
Salvation Army Bell Ringing
First Church members volunteer as Salvation Army Bell Ringers each December. We are always located at the Kroger in Knox Plaza. If you would like to volunteer for a 2hr time slot, please contact Debbie Greenwood at 584-3210.
Our Sewing Ministry meets in the Fellowship Hall at 10am on the First Tuesday of every month. No sewing experience is necessary and we have an extra machine available for anyone who would like to join us (or you can bring your own!). Throughout the year we work on a variety of projects including:
During each month that has a fifth Wednesday a group from First Church provides, prepares, and serves lunch at the Volunteer Ministry Center on Broadway in downtown Knoxville. Fifth Wednesdays for 2016 are March 30, June 29, August 31, & November 30.