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Berkeley United Methodist Church

May 2014
Pastors Perspective
COMING UP THIS MONTH: Neighborhood Garage, Crafts 'n More Sale
SLH Mother and Me Tea Youth Mission Trip & Spring Event
Our church is greatly blessed by the talents and dedication of our staff. On Sunday, May 4, we recognize Vikki Schwarz and Tyler Mabry, who have led our music ministry here for 15 years. They have shown us what we are capable of as a congregation, balancing familiar and new elements in our worship life and making us the singing Methodists which our heritage calls us. Through music, they have brought us deeper into the presence of God. They have created communities of instrumental music, song and faith in the chancel choir and handbell choir. They have accompanied us (no pun intended!) through many of our joys and sorrows as members of one body, the church. During these 15 years, much has happened in their lives. Vikki attended UT for doctoral work in Music Theory. Her daughters, Liz and Stacy, have grown up, married and made Vikki the grandmother of three grandsons. Tyler completed his Ph.D. at UT, and is engaged to be married to Meredith Orf in September. The Staff-Parish Relations Committee is hosting a celebration of their 15 years of music ministry Sunday, May 4. Worship services will include their favorite hymns: When in Our Music God Is Glorified (Vikki) and Come, Thou Fount of Every Blessing (Tyler). Breakfast will be in the CLC at 9:45am. We hope you will be there! And where would our ministries be without the consistent and gifted support of our administrative assistant, Niki Jacobson Torres? Niki came to us in March 2013 and has handled office operations so well. She represents our church to the public, greets and assists everyone in person or by phone with patience and kindness, and provides modern computer assistanceone thing I very definitely need! We will miss her, but we are thankful that her husband, Patrick, will begin a rewarding new job in North Carolina this summer. Their family will move after the anticipated birth of their second daughter. The Staff-Parish Committee will interview applicants and hopes to find a new administrative assistant by the time Niki completes her work with us on June 5. Please let these terrific members of our staff know of your appreciation. Our church is strong in many areas, in considerable measure due to our staff. As Jim Collins, author of Good to Great, insists: You have to get the right people on the bus. Well, Berkeley has!

Members of the Congregation

Rev. Jeanne Devine

Director of Music
Vikki Schwarz

Tyler Mabry

Administrative Assistant
Niki J Torres

Youth Director
Devan Gartman

Childcare Director
Allison McGillicuddy

Church Happenings
Happy and Sad News
5/06 Beth Collins 5/07 Charles Slusher 5/07 Ginger Wahlers 5/09 Dixie Warden 5/10 Megan Salinas 5/12 Anne Schultz 5/13 Nina Huitt 5/23 Albert Green 5/26 Dave Justus 5/27 Barrett Renfro 5/27 Ray Curtis 5/29 Jeff Contreras
Submitted by Niki J. Torres, Administrative Assistant

In the last year of having the privilege of serving as Berkeleys Administrative Assistant, I have encountered a church of warm, caring, funny, thoughtful, and all-around enjoyable people, all whom have welcomed me with open arms. Demonstrated in your attitude towards me (and others!), is the body of Christ manifested in the church body at its very best. All of these things, of course, make it very hard to say good-bye. As my family prepares to embark on the adventures awaiting us in Raleigh, North Carolina, I have remarked more than once that if there was a way to pick up this church and its members and just airlift you with me, I would be more than happy to stay in my current position! As it is, I will take with me many happy memories and a great deal of thankfulness all for the love extended to me (as well as to my daughter, who will dearly miss Berkeleys Childcare Center). It is a beautiful thing that, as members of the body of Christ, we are really never too far from each other; my prayers are with this church, as I hope yours may be with my family at this time.

Rio Texas and Other Conference Changes

Submitted by Rev. Jeanne Devine

5/14 Louis & Betty Thigpen 5/27 Greg Lasley & Cheryl Johnson 5/27 Gary & Karen Walters

On January 1, 2015, the Southwest Texas and Rio Grande Conferences of the United Methodist Church will become one new conference: Rio Texas. Berkeley UMC will remain in the Austin District, to be called the Capitol District. Our new district superintendent will be Rev. Teresa Welborn, currently the director of clergy development in our conference. She previously served as pastor of Buda UMC. Our current DS, Rev. Steve Purdy, will move to San Angelo to serve as DS of the West District. If you want to know more, go to the link to see Bishop Dorff's video or a list of the new districts and churches:

Average Attendance
April Worship Sunday 2014 144* 36 YTD 127 35 2013 120 43

Gifts as of March 31
Monthly Income Monthly Expenses Year-to-Date Income Year-to-Date Expenses $ 26,938 $ 26,643 $ 77,010 $ 71,043

*Including Easter

Green Ventures
Submitted by Julia

Lancaster and Ron Meade

Every positive act is meaningful! We have been recycling aluminum cans for so long that sometimes we just "take care of business" and forget to report on the cumulative effort. Please forgive, and see annual totals listed below. The BUMC aluminum can "project" provides 100% of its receipts to the Pastor's Discretionary Fund, which in turn helps us help others (within and outside of Berkeley UMC). In the process, it helps us all live a little more gently on God's earth. A win-win proposition! We are called to help those in need, are we not? And United Methodist Church Social Principles support care of the natural world: "All creation is the Lords, and we are responsible for the ways in which we use and abuse it" and "God has granted us stewardship of creation." We encourage everyone to recycle Every day, recycle Everything (possible), and recycle Everywhere. Take the City of Austin recycle pledge: If "Every" seems a bit too onerous . . . at least take advantage of the opportunities that are readily available: 1. In Austin, you can recycle at home in your single-stream bin. 2. Many workplaces also have recycling bins. And now, 3. you can recycle church-related items here at Berkeley! A small recycle bin is located in the CLC Fellowship Hall, along with a poster to clarify what can be deposited. (Please note that aluminum cans still go in the green bins outside, along the south wall of the Education building, so they'll continue to benefit the Pastor's Discretionary Fund.) So, if you live in the City of Austin or another town that offers recycling, please recycle appropriate items according to the local guidelines. If your community does not offer recycling, ask elected officials why not? And in the interim, take your household recycle items to Ecology Action located at 707 E. 9th St., Austin, TX 78701, 512-322-0000, E. 9th at I-35, Below are annual totals since we have been recycling aluminum cans for Berkeley UMC. Thanks for your support! 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 $106.17 $151.82 $132.34 $192.28 $237.09 $242.17 $196.10 $276.40 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 TOTAL $256.55 $166.44 $99.58 $109.35 $107.15 $106.20 $2379.64

Pray with Berkeley UM Women this Month

Submitted by Julia

Lancaster, from the UMW Response magazine, April 2014, pg. 46

God of our Easter foremothers women awake at dawn to mourn a life lost, to anoint a body crucified, we too are confused, surprised, scared when presented with the Holy Unexpected. You gave the good news of Christ's resurrection first to women, who shared the news and were not first believed. I have seen the Lord! With strength from you, their faith lives on in us, we women of the church, we followers of Christ, we seers and receivers of your truth. Give quiet to our hearts and wind to our voices as we continue to listen for and share your good news that all are loved, all are forgiven, and death has been overcome. Amen. Tara Barnes, managing editor, Response

Reaching Out
"Too often we under-estimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. ~ Dr. Felice Leonardo Buscaglia

Outreach Ministry Update

Submitted by Ginger Wahlers, Outreach

Here are some ways you can make a small difference in an intentional way:

Neighborhood Garage, Crafts 'n More Sale

Outreach is busy coordinating our 2nd Annual Change the World Weekend event on May 17, 2014. The focus this year will be a Neighborhood Garage, Crafts n More Sale. Outreach committee is inviting neighbors from the surrounding community and members of our congregation to join us. We need volunteers to help with organizing and working the event, set-up and cleanup, and pricing donations; or maybe you would like to have your own table. Please mark your calendar and contact Ginger Wahlers at or 512-786-0001, or Carolyn Brown at or 512-443-2600 to volunteer or reserve a space. Our fundraising focus this year is Austin area Meals on Wheels and More. Clean out your closets, create your crafts, and get ready to sell, sell, sell!

Outreach Highlight of the MonthVisit a Nursing Home: Ideas for a Successful Visit
Some people find it uncomfortable to visit someone in a nursing home. Many people find that they don't know what to say or how to communicate with a person. Often, the fact that someone cares enough to visit is all that is needed from a resident's point of view. But that is not always enough for the visitor.

Here are some suggestions for making the time more meaningful for both parties: Bring current newspapers or magazines to read to the resident. Offer to escort the resident to an event the facility is offering, such as exercise or a movie. Bring items the resident will like, such as flowers or a pair of warm soft socks. Take a walk with the resident especially if you can take them outside. If the resident is in a wheelchair, push them around the facility, go to visit another resident, or take them outside. Bring pictures. It is best to select a theme, such as a particular birthday, and bring pictures for just that event. Bring pictures of another event next time. Celebrate holidays and the resident's birthday. Bring a book and read a chapter or get a book on tape and listen together. Bring their favorite music and listen to it with them. Visit regularly. The more you visit, the more you will have in common and the easier the visits will become.

For more information, visit Thank you to everyone who helped pass out flyers in the neighborhood for Change the World Weekend and for your generosity in contributing to the Canned Food Drive!

Thanks from St. Andrew!

Submitted by Rev. Jeanne Devine

From our first Sunday in April mission offering, Berkeley was able to send $400 to the Society of St. Andrew, a United Methodist organization fighting hunger. We received this message: Through your gift, you will put healthy, nourishing food on the tables of individuals and families who are struggling to get by. Partnering with SOSA, you engage volunteer gleaners in hands-on mission and service; you help send large loads of fruits and vegetables to areas where they are most needed; you support local feeding agencies in every area of the country; and you reduce food wasteall as you follow Jesus command to feed the hungry. Thank you for making this gift, and for joining with us in working toward a world without hunger. In March and April every year, a matching gift to SOSA doubles the impact of every contribution. Hence Berkeley effectively donated $800 to fight hunger. Your generosity is greatly appreciated.

Manchaca UMC and the Austin Family Institute

Submitted by Rev. Laura Smith Adam, Pastor, Manchaca UMC

Im writing to let you know of a partnership Manchaca UMC and the Austin Family Institute have formed in order to provide excellent yet affordable mental health services in the greater South Austin area. Manchaca UMCs partnership with the Austin Family Institute (AFI) began in 2012, as we asked ourselves what needs in our community we could address as a church. Where are the gaps? Where are people being under-served in our area? It quickly became apparent that high quality mental health services were hard to find in the South Austin/Buda area. And so the Manchaca Counseling Office was born, as we decided to partner with the Austin Family Institute to provide a safe, nearby location for people to receive the mental health services they need. The Austin Family Institute has served the Austin community since 1990. Dr. Michael Bishop and Liz Gentry serve as AFIs Directors. AFI provides counseling services on a sliding scale. Many issues that might arise in the life of an individual, a couple, or a family may be addressed by the therapists & interns at AFI. You can learn more about AFI by going to their website at AFIs Manchaca Counseling Office is located just inside the east entrance of our main building, which allows easy, private access from MUMCs east parking lot. AFIs services are available to church families and community residents alike, with fees based on what people can afford. A pastors referral is not necessary for someone to make an appointment with an AFI therapist. All they need to do is call AFIs main office at 512-329-6611 and request an appointment at the Manchaca Counseling Office.

Mother and Me Tea for St. Louise House

You are invited to help celebrate the strength of mothers everywhere! Grab your girlfriends, mothers, sisters, daughters, and sons to celebrate the special women in your life on Mother's Day weekend: Saturday, May 10 from 12:30-3pm at Green Pastures Restaurant (811 West Live Oak, Austin, Texas). Tickets are $50 for adults, $35 for children. All proceeds benefit Saint Louise House. For more information about the Tea, raffle and sponsorship packages, visit

Spiritual Growth
Empty or Open?
Submitted by Rachel Trudell, Spiritual Care

Spiritual Care Ministry thanks all those who participated in the Sanctuary Watch this past Easter weekend. May we go forth living from the space of the open tomb... Maybe its not the things that catch our eye that are really real. Maybe the most real thing in the world is the empty tomb. And maybe empty is not the best word to describe what it is. Empty space implies a lack, as if the only thing to say about the tomb is that the body is missing. But what if its open spaceopen to possibility and Gods new thing? We have a choice when presented with this space. We can ignore it. After all, whats going to change if we pass it by? The world will still be defined by its problems and its brokenness. But if we choose to live in this space, this open space, which God has opened up in the very place where the world marks death, then our lives get redefined and reoriented. Suddenly the God who speaks behind the distractions can instruct us to go where we have never been before. - Excerpted from Ministry Matters, April 10

Go to the Holy Land with Bishop Dorff

Submitted by Rev. Jeanne Devine

You are invited to join Bishop Jim and Barbara Dorff on a 10-day trip of Biblical understanding, September 9-18. The trip is organized by Educational Opportunities Tours. All-inclusive price from Austin starts at $3446 (airfare, hotels, tours and more). Optional extensions are available to Cairo, Bethlehem, Jordan and a Nile cruise. Deadline for deposit is May 27. If interested, please pick up a brochure in the narthex or contact Niki Torres to request one.

Book Review: The Day the World Came to Town by Jim DeFede
Submitted by Kathy Beth Stavinoha

On September 11, 2001, three jumbo jets were used by terrorists as bombs against American targets. In order to prevent additional attacks, all airspace over the United States was turned into a no fly zone, meaning all planes in the air had to land, and international flights could not enter U.S. airspace. Thirty-eight jetliners were diverted to Gander, Newfoundland, and Canada. In 2001, the population of Gander was just over 9,600. The entire community worked to provide for the thousands of diverted passengers. Schools, churches and other large facilities were quickly converted into shelters, but the logistics of caring for the stranded passengers were another matter. The people of Gander cleaned out their linen closets in order to provide sheets and towels for the shelters. They visited the shelters and invited people over for a quiet cup of tea (or something stronger). They welcomed perfect strangers into their homes for meals and hot showers. Businesses and individuals donated diapers, clothing, medicine and more to their unexpected and bewildered guests. Volunteers from the local animal shelter fed and cared for the animals that had been traveling in the cargo holds of the planes. After the travelers were able to continue their interrupted travel, the provincial government offered to give a party for all the volunteers of Gander. The citizens didnt feel right, given the circumstances, so the mayor politely declined saying, How could you not help someone in trouble? As members of Christs family, let us all say the same.





Thu 1 5:308p Saint Louise House (CLC)

Fri 2

Sat 3 9a & 6:30p Amen Austin! Church (FH) 10 6:30p Amen Austin! Church (FH)

4 Communion Sun. Vikki & Tyler Appreciation Services 4p Tai Chi (FH) 5p Youth Fellowship (Manchaca UMC) 5p Covt Grp (9) 11 Mothers Day 12p Youth Fellowship (FH) 4p Tai Chi (FH) 5p Covt Grp (9)

5 10a Womens Group (9)

6 6p Congregational Care (7)

7 6p Handbells 7p Choir 7p Amen Austin! Bible Study (FH)

8 5:308p Saint Louise House (CLC)

12 10a Womens Group (9) 7p Worship Design Team (Sanc.) 6:30p SPRC (7)

13 5:30p Prime Timers (FH) 6:15p Childcare Board (7)

14 9:30a UMW Women in Action 6p Handbells 7p Choir 7p Amen Austin! Bible Study (FH)

15 5:308p Saint Louise House (CLC)


17 7:30a UMW Women in Gods Grace Circle (FH) 8:30a Change the World (Outside) 9a UMW Executive Mtg. (7) 6:30p Amen Austin! Church (FH) 24 7:28a Mens breakfast (FH) 9a Trustees (9) 6:30p Amen Austin! Church (FH)

18 12p Youth Fellowship (FH) 4p Tai Chi (FH) 5p Covenant Grp (9) Newsletter deadline 25 12p Youth Fellowship (FH) 4p Tai Chi 5p Covenant (9)

19 10a Womens Group (9) 7p Finance (7)


21 6p Handbells 7p Choir 7p Amen Austin! Bible Study (FH)

22 5:308p Saint Louise House (CLC) 6:15pm Childcare Center Graduation (Sanc.)


26 Memorial Day Church Office Closed 10a Womens Group (9)

27 5:45p Spiritual Care (9) 7p Church Council (FH)

28 6p Handbells 7p Choir 7p Amen Austin! Bible Study (FH)

29 5:308p Saint Louise House (CLC)


31 6:30p Amen Austin! Church (FH)

BERKELEY UNITED METHODIST CHURCH 2407 Berkeley Ave. Austin, TX. 78745 512-447-6633


Youth News!
Submitted by Devan Fay Gartman

Graduates in Your Family?

Submitted by Rev. Jeanne Devine

Youth Group had a wonderful April! We started the month by continuing the Lent Bible Study, and we really enjoyed getting to hear how other people in our church love and serve the Lord. Youth Group went to see the movie, God's Not Dead, which we highly recommend! All of us left impacted by the movie, and we felt reenergized to share God with those who are struggling to believe. Youth helped lead in the Maundy Thursday worship: simply a lovely service to be a part of. We ended the month with a swimming party at the Burnses house where we not only had fun, but we got to serve Kairos by baking them lots of cookies! Spring Event: May 3 will be filled with fun, games, and friends at the Austin District Youth Spring Event at Rolling Hills Community Church from 11am-2pm. Let Devan know if you would like to attend! Mission Trip: Berkeleys youth have been invited to participate with Bee Creek UMYF in a trip to San Antonio, June 22-28, to improve housing for elderly or disabled residents. The deadline to sign up is Sunday, May 4. Call Devan at 512-826-0009 for details.

Berkeley UMC would like to recognize students who will graduate from high school, college (associates or bachelors degree), technical institute, graduate or professional school this year. Please send information as soon as possible to the church office, We would like to share the students name, school name, and degree (if any). Thank you for your help.