Monday Meditations

Starting the week with intention. 9.19.2023

Fairmount Avenue UMC is a joyful, welcoming community; igniting hearts and minds for God's work.

Daily Devotional from The Upper Room: "Different, Yet the Same"

Stephen Bendit (Colorado, USA)

Today's Reading: Luke 6:12-16

Thought for the Day: Though our ways may be different, Jesus binds us all together.

Prayer Focus: To see God in the diversity of humankind.

Growing up as a preacher’s kid, I attended a lot of different churches.

Looking back, I see how every church that my dad served was distinct. The congregations, services, outreach programs, church camps, Bible studies, and songs were similar, but also different. All congregations worshiped God, but I was amazed at the many different ways of praising and serving God.

Jesus loves diversity! When he chose the 12 disciples, he picked people with different personalities, abilities, and professions: fishermen, a tax collector, Zealots.

Jesus’ closest non-disciple friends and companions were also quite a diverse bunch with different backgrounds and beliefs. But with these many different points of view and backgrounds, all that Jesus requested of them was to “follow me!”

Today’s Christians are also a diverse group with different nationalities, professions, languages, cultures, denominations, and worship traditions. The companions of Jesus clearly show that he loved diversity! As we answer Jesus’ call, “Follow me,” we can find our common faith within our diversity.

Today's Prayer

Dear Jesus, help us acknowledge and accept how others praise you,

and lead us all toward becoming one body, your church. Amen.

To read more daily meditations from The Upper Room, click here. Sign up for access to past devotionals, daily emails, comment on devotionals, view more content from writers on the blog, or submit your own meditation.

Help with Wednesday Suppers!

Supper is back on Wednesday evenings at 5:30pm, held in the Fellowship Hall. Sign up to help by clicking here or on the image below.

Fellowship Servers for this Sunday, September 24

This Sunday: Craig Dawson and Bonnie Beverly, Rob and Stacey Boucher

Please contact the church office if you are not able to volunteer this week.

October 1 Servers: Joann Eichten, Nate and Amy Woodward

October 8 Servers: Dee Senaratna, Jeff Bryan & Liz Kramer

October 15 Servers: Roger Butenhoff & Barbara Korf, Kevin & Alison Peterson

October 22 Servers: Phill and Linda Gill

A link to the full calendar of servers throughout the year is included at the bottom of this email.

RSVP for our Annual North Shore Hiking Weekend, September 29 - October 1

Please let us know that you are participating in the North Shore Hiking Weekend on September 29-October 1 by completing the online form here! An email will be sent the week before the trip using this information. Please contact Carol Hokanson at if you have any questions.

A few rooms remain in a block of rooms reserved for both nights at the Aspen Lodge in Grand Marais (phone number - 218-387-2500) at a rate of $149 a night + tax. Ask for the Fairmount Avenue Hiking Group room block when you call (block rate lasts until September 10th if room available). Other lodging is available, including the Grand Marais Municipal Campground.

There are funds available for anyone who may need financial assistance with transportation or lodging. Contact the office for information.

Wednesday Programming: "Saving Grace: A Guide to Financial Wellbeing"

Adult Wednesday Programming is back! Starting September 20, we will meet for a six-week program on personal finance. Saving Grace is a United Methodist Church developed curriculum designed to teach Wesleyan principals of managing resources, using and eliminating debt, and setting goals to achieve a sustainable financial life. We’ll focus on creating a firm financial footing to help us live faithfully and be ready for God’s calling, wherever it may lead.

All adults are welcome to join us on Wednesday evenings from 6:30-7:30pm in person at FAUMC. If you are interested, please let either Scott Wendell or Brad Neuhauser know.

Host a Community Meet Up!

Do you have an idea for a fun way to get together with other people from church? Host a community "Meet Up!"

It's really easy....

1. Come up with an event, activity, or location.

2. Let the church office know your plan.

3. We will invite the church to "Meet Up."

4. Show up and welcome anyone who comes!

Consider hosting with a friend. A "Meet Up" could be simply meeting at a coffee shop, a park, or a community festival. Maybe you'd like to host a bike ride "Meet Up" or a hiking "Meet Up." Or maybe going to a sporting event or concert... Whatever you like to do can be a "Meet Up."

This is a great way to get to know each other, create opportunities for newer people in our church to get connected, and invite your friends!

Adopt-A-Drain Needs Volunteers

We need volunteers through the end of the year to help keep drains clear.

Sign up for a month here or by clicking the image below.

Get Involved at Fairmount Avenue UMC

A Joyful Welcoming Community

  • Simpson Meal - Tuesday, September 19.

  • Music Makers Mini Sessions - Tuesday, September 19 for children ages 2-3 and Thursday, September 21 for children ages 4-5, either 10:00am or 6:00pm. Contact Mindy at for more details.

  • Rev. Arthur Pry Memorial - Saturday, September 23 in the sanctuary. Visitation will begin at 12:00pm prior to the service at 1:00pm. The service will be livestreamed.

  • Prayer Shawl Ministry Meeting - Sunday, September 24 at 3:00pm via Zoom.

Igniting Hearts and Minds
  • Explorers Dream Big in Sunday School! Sundays, 9:00-10:00am before worship. Beginning with “In Your Dreams,” a four-week unit on the life and dreams of Joseph, we start the program year with the assurance that: God watches over us; God loves us all the same; God will make things right; we can obey God above all else. For kids in PreK-5th Grade. For more information email Ashton Pappas, Director of Children’s Ministries, at
  • Explorers T-G-I-W is F-U-N! T.G.I.W. activities begin THIS WEEK on Wednesday, September 20. Kickoff the year by getting back together with old friends, meeting new friends, and having fun while rejoicing in God! Explorers T.G.I.W. is Children’s Choir rehearsal from 6:00-6:30pm and activities from 6:30-7:30pm. For kids in PreK-5th Grade. For more information email Ashton Pappas, Director of Children’s Ministries, at
    • Followers Faith Formation - Sundays, 9:00-10:00am. Come often and come when you can! Meet in the youth room. Our wonderful teachers Dave Hokanson and Jeff Bryan are returning. What to expect: A time to connect and discuss faith formation topics. We will start off with the theme, “Building Connection and Community,” using teachings of Jesus, Wesley, and beyond! For more information email Cindy Radtke, Director of Youth and Young Adult Ministries, at
    • Y.A.M. Faith Exploration - Sundays, 11:45am-12:45pm. Come often and come when you can! All young adults (those college-aged through 30 years old) are invited. Meet in the "new" Susanna Room, at the end of the hall from the sanctuary. What to expect: Time to connect and explore our faith and what it means in our daily lives. This will be hybrid; for link, email Cindy Radtke, Director of Youth and Young Adult Ministries, at or text 763-321-8077.
    • Adult Sunday School: The Gift and Power of Story - Sundays at 9:00am. Throughout history, stories have been used to entertain, teach, and help listeners understand even the most abstract concepts. Stories told well can make ideas more accessible and memorable. Jesus was a skillful storyteller and shared countless powerful messages through parables recorded in the scriptures. Let’s explore the gift and power of stories that help us better understand how to apply this divine guidance in today’s world. This series will be led by Amy Dauplaise, a member of FAUMC. Amy received her MS in Theology and Arts from United Theological Seminary (UTS) and is returning to UTS this fall to pursue studies in Spiritual Direction.
    • T.G.I.W. for Adults - Wednesdays at 6:30pm beginning THIS WEEK, September 20. Let’s start with a series on personal finance! Saving Grace is a UMC-developed curriculum designed to teach Wesleyan principals of managing resources, using and eliminating debt, and setting goals to achieve a sustainable financial life. We will focus on creating a firm financial footing to help us live faithfully and be ready for God’s calling, wherever it may lead.

    For God's Work

    • Worship Volunteers Needed! We need volunteers to assist as ushers, greeters, liturgists, and to serve on the Worship Committee. Volunteering is flexible to your schedule. Contact the church office if you think you can help by emailing

    • First Fruits - We’re so grateful to all who have recently signed up to volunteer. If you are interested in delivering food donations to Keystone Community Services after our monthly donations, please contact the church office or click here: Help Collect and Deliver First Fruit Donations to Keystone

    • Adopt-A-Drain– Sign up to Help! We are looking for volunteers to clean the storm drains near the church: 3 at the corner of Fairmount and Saratoga and 2 on Fairmount just east of Snelling. SEPTEMBER 2023 REMAINS VACANT. Volunteers are asked to pick up trash, leaves and debris to allow water to drain. Please go to Fairmount Ave UMC: Adopt a Drain Signup to sign up for a month. If you have any questions, please contact Nita at

    • Help Serve a Meal at Provincial House - Project Home is looking for volunteers to serve meals as a part of its weekend meal teams. There are four shifts available every weekend on Saturday and Sunday for lunch and dinner. This opportunity is great for groups of 3-6 people. Currently the way it works is for one person to sign up for the shift and then bring another 2-5 others with them to help. The link for more information and to sign up: Questions? Contact Steve Wertz, who has already signed up for the dinner shift on Saturdays and who is willing to join a shift if available and/or meet you at the Shelter to assist with finding the entrance and guiding you to the kitchen and dining room.

    Covid Update: From 9.27.22

    The Fairmount Avenue UMC Church Council has decided to shift to a "masks optional" policy starting September 27, 2022. We will no longer be monitoring weekly risk assessment levels and welcome all to join for church programming as they are comfortable.

    Worship Online

    Worship Resources for Online Worship:

    Online Giving

    Giving online is easy through our PayPal Giving Fund page. Click the image on the left to check it out!

    Fairmount Avenue United Methodist Church

    "A joyful, welcoming community; igniting hearts and minds for God's work."