Our Newest Members

Today, we welcomed three of our young people into the membership as they celebrated their Confirmation during this morning’s service. They worked hard to complete their Confirmation classes and we are all very proud of them!

Congratulations to:

Hailey Crawford

Dallas Ecker

Kyle Norton

Sue Baker on the Autoharp accompanying the Confirmands, who sang and signed “Step By Step”

Dallas giving his testimonial

Kyle giving his testimonial

Hailey giving her testimonial

Proud sponsors – Sue Baker and Larry Fisher

The Confirmands with their Sponsors

Pastor Linda

Confirmation Ceremony

Parents and Sponsors

Hailey receiving her Bible and certificate

Dallas receiving his Bible and certificate

Kyle receiving his Bible and certificate

The Confirmands assisted in the service of Holy Communion

Hailey with her family

Dallas and Kyle enjoying some cake and conversation

Red carnations adorned the tables

Kelsey and Lindsay Crawford


AFUMC Joyful Good Shepherd Ringers

Our very own Joyful Good Shepherd Ringers Hand Bell Choir was one of the local performers at the An Albion Family Christmas Concert event on Sunday, December 3, 2017. The event was a fundraiser for the Albion High School Alumni Foundation and is an annual concert featuring local talent ringing in the holiday season at the Albion First Presbyterian Church. For more information and photos of the event, click here!

Here are some photos taken of the Bell Choir in action at the concert:


Dedication of New Choir Robes

On Sunday, January 22, 2017, Pastor Linda Glantz performed the Order of Dedication For Choir Robes to bless and put into service our brand new robes. The choir is so happy to have new robes in a vibrant light gray with burgundy accents. Here are some photos from the service:


Organist and Choir Director, Marie Follett, playing the prelude.


Choir leading the congregation in the opening hymn – “Here I Am, Lord


Choir gathered for the Order of Dedication


Pastor Linda leading the Order of Dedication for Choir Robes


Our Pastor, Choir, and Choir Director

(l-r): Pastor Linda, Kim Pritt, Kae Wilbert, Cathy Moore, Wilma Richardson, Jack Richardson, Reid Cole, Terry Wilbert, and Marie Follett

Extra robes were also blessed and put into service to accommodate future additional choir members – anyone interested in joining our choir?


The choir singing our first anthem in the newly dedicated robes – an Acappella rendition of “Sing Out The News

A big THANK YOU to Melanie Norton for taking the photos for me! I rarely get photos of the choir because I can’t sing AND take photos at the same time….and, I really didn’t want to miss capturing this important event! Thanks so much, Melanie!

October 30th – Pastor Appreciation

October is Pastor Appreciation Month. Throughout the month, the congregation showed their appreciation to Pastor Linda in various ways. Today, we ended the month with a cake during our Coffee Hour after the service.


Pastor Linda Glantz

Also, today, the men of the Chancel Choir sang Be Still, My Soul for the Anthem.


(l-r): Pastor Linda (seated to the left), Jack Richardson, Reid Cole, and Terry Wilbert – accompanied by Marie Follett on the piano

2016 Children’s Day Service

Each year, the Children put on a program during the service marking the end of the Sunday School season. Today was that day for 2016. Here are some photos from their program:

The Youth Handbell Choir played Holy, Holy, Holy Lord God Almighty


The Methodist Music Makers sang Kumbaya featuring Hailey Crawford on the flute and There is Love



The message was in the form of a skit called The Heavenly Express, written by Sharon Kay Chatwell. The Sunday School students acted out the skit about how you get to heaven on the Heavenly Express. It was a cute story and they all did a very nice job!


Kyle Norton and Dallas Ecker served as narrators of the story while they sat on a bench waiting for the train


Lindsay Crawford was the ticket lady


Kay Ecker stopped by with her ticket, ready to board


Hunter Hering and Hailey Crawford talk about how they can get a ticket


And, here they are ready to get their tickets


Steve and Tiffany Crawford and Hunter Hering are a family discussing how the Heavenly Express isn’t something they may get to ride on as a family – some may go ahead of the others


And…..Kelsey Crawford played the Conductor – blowing the whistle and declaring “All Aboard!”

Other highlights of the service were the hymns that focused on relationship between children and God: Jesus Loves Me, Tell Me The Stories of Jesus, and This Little Light of Mine.

2016 Native American Sunday Service

Each year, the First United Methodist Church picks a Sunday to celebrate Native American Sunday. This year, that special day of worship was held on May 22nd. Here are some photos from the service:


Kae Wilbert talks about the meaning of symbols in the Native American culture with some of our youth during the Children’s Moment


Kae works with the Committee on Native American Ministries (CONAM) and coordinates our annual day of Native American worship. During the service, Kae provided a report on the activities of CONAM and offered the sermon.


Kay Ecker led the Proclamation and read the Epistle Lesson


Leah Gibbs offered the Closing Prayer


In this photo, Pastor Jack is offering the Benediction and led us in our closing Praise Song


Kae Wilbert and Leah Gibbs after the service

Other features of the worship service that I was not able to get photos of include:

  • Dallas Ecker led the Opening Prayer
  • Melanie Norton led the Prayer of the Faithful
  • The Chancel Choir provided the Choral Prelude in traditional Native American language, “Heleyuyan“, led by Kae Wilbert with traditional Native American instrumentation
  • The Chancel Choir sang two traditional Kiowa songs for the Anthem: “Ah-ho Dawk’ee (God, I Thank You)” and “Dawk’yah towgyah thawy baht-awm (Take the Saving Word of God)“, again, led by Kae with traditional Native American instrumentation
  • Recordings of “Creator’s Song” by Joanne Shenandoah was played as the Prelude and “The Lord’s Prayer” sung in the Mohawk language during the Offeratory

It was a lovely service. Thank you to Kae for organizing it and for helping the Chancel Choir learn the songs we sang in the Kiowa language. It is always an interesting and meaningful service and I look forward to next year!

Mother’s Day Performance – May 8, 2016

During today’s Mother’s Day worship service, the Methodist Music Makers and the Youth Hand Bell Choir performed three wonderful songs for us! Great job by the youth of our congregation……we all enjoyed their music very much!

The Methodist Music Makers performed “Get Together” (a 1967 song by the Youngbloods) and “Let It Be” (a 1970 song by The Beatles). The Methodist Music Makers sing and play various musical instruments – they consist of (left to right): Dallas Ecker, Kyle Norton, Kelsey Crawford, Hunter Hering, Lindsay Crawford, Hailey Crawford, and Youth Music Director, Al Capurso.




The Youth Hand Bell Choir performed “Jesus Loves Me”. The Youth Hand Bell choir members include (left to right): Hunter Hering, Lindsay Crawford, Hailey Crawford, Dallas Ecker, and Kyle Norton. Accompanying them in the back row are Steve Crawford (Hailey and Lindsay’s father) and Leslee Lockwood (Kyle’s grandmother). Youth Hand Bell Director is Kae Wilbert.





It is always a joy to have the children participate in our service, but it is especially joyful when they provide such beautiful and meaningful music! Thank you to all the youth and the adults who work with them to bring the Youth Music Ministry together!

Hand Bells

I took some photos of the hand bells during Bell Choir rehearsal, tonight, to satisfy my daily photo challenge. It was so difficult to choose just one for the photo challenge that I felt the need to share them all here!

030216_B is for Bells

This is the one I chose for the photo challenge!






2015 Children’s Christmas Program

This morning – Sunday, December 13th – we lit the Advent candle representing JOY! What better way to bring joy to the congregation than to have our annual Children’s Christmas Program. So, this morning, the children of the congregation led the worship service and provided joyful music as a way to celebrate this third Sunday of Advent.

Here are some photos:


Callee Norton read the prayer for the lighting of the Advent candle of JOY

Kyle Norton and Dallas Ecker lit the Advent candles (the way they stood while doing this prevented me from getting a photo)


Callee also delivered the message – “The Perfect Gift”, by Sandra Wood


Dallas Ecker read the Gospel Lesson

Dallas also led the Prayer of Confession and Kyle Norton led the Call to Worship


Hailey and Lindsay Crawford read the story of “Caroling”, by Susan Farr-Fahncke


Hailey Crawford (on flute) and Dallas Ecker (on trumpet) played “O, Come All Ye Faithful”


The Methodist Music Makers sang “Away in a Manger” and “Silent Night”

(left to right): Dallas Ecker, Kyle Norton, Kelsey Crawford, Hailey Crawford, and Al Capurso

Also in the group is Lindsay Crawford, who can not be seen from this angle


The Methodist Music Makers

(front) – Kelsey Crawford

(left to right) – Dallas Ecker, Kyle Norton, Hailey Crawford, and Lindsay Crawford

(back) – Al Capurso, FUMC Children’s Music Director

All of the children did an awesome job! We are so proud of our youth and how they contribute to the congregation.

Merry Christmas!!!

Join us for our special Christmas Eve Worship Service – the first in our new home at the Christ Episcopal Church – on Thursday, December 24th at 11:00 PM.

Children’s Day – 06-14-15

Today was Children’s Day….the day when the youth of our congregation conduct the worship service. They all did an incredible job and it was thoroughly enjoyable! Also, today was the official closing out of Sunday School classes for the summer, so we honored the teaching staff during the service. After the service, we gathered for our annual Special Friends Reception and Ice Cream Social. It was a great day in our church, indeed!

Here are a few photos:

First up – Callee Norton and Dallas Ecker led the Call to Worship and Prayer of Invocation, but it didn’t seem right to be snapping photos instead of responding to the prayers!

Then, the two youngest in our youth program sang and danced to two of their favorite Praise Songs: “A Little Bit More” and “Jesus is Alive!” – here are Lindsay (r) and Kelsey (l) Crawford:



Kyle Norton and Hailey Crawford ushered for the offering.

We, then, enjoyed some wonderful Special Music by Dallas Ecker on the trumpet and Hailey Crawford on the flute! Their first arrangement was “Overture of 1812” performed together. Then, Hailey performed a solo of “When the Saints Go Marching In” and Dallas performed a solo of “Dedication“…..I believe both are in their first year of instrument lessons and did an amazing job – all three performances were met with roaring applause!





Hailey Crawford and Callee Norton each read a bible passage to share God’s word with us:



The message had a baseball theme and to preface it, Kay Ecker (mother of Dallas Echer) read the poem, “Casey at the Bat” by Ernest L. Thayer:


The message came in the form of a skit performed by all the youth and the Sunday School teaching staff with Kyle Norton portraying “Casey” in the story of “Casey at the Pulpit”:


Narrator: Callee Norton


Pastor Casey’s congregation


Kyle Norton as “Pastor Casey”



Recognition of the teaching staff of the Youth Program:


Steve and Tiffany Crawford


Sandy Andrews and Kay Ecker with Melanie Norton recognized for her work with the youth Acolytes 

Today’s hymns were also selected by the youth – opening hymn was “Jesus Loves Me” and we finished off with “We Are The Church“! God bless our youth — they did an awesome job with today’s service!!!

I’ll close with this photo of our youngest in the youth program – Kelsey Crawford – with the new glasses she got from her Special Friend at the Special Friends Reception – I think it captures the fun and joy we all felt today: