From Pastor Dan Colthorp

1.  The church will be re-opening for in person worship on Sunday, September 27th.  There will be a 9:00 AM traditional service and an 11:00 AM casual service.  At both services people will be asked to wear a mask, sanitize their hands, and social distance from those who are not familyWe will be live streaming the 11:00 AM service every week, so you can join us for that or you can watch the service anytime during the week on our church's Youtube channel.

2.  The Men's group is meeting online at 8:00 AM every Saturday.  If you would like to join them, please contact Bill Funk and he will send you the link.  You can also contact Pastor Dan or others in the group and they can send the link too.

3.  This coming Thursday will be our first SPARK Kids' Club for children who are Pre-K through 5th grade.  This group will meet from 6:00-7:30 PM at the church.  There will be games, crafts, and Bible Time.  It will be very similar to VBS.  We hope you will get your kids or grandkids involved.  You can register your children here or simply show up that night and register.  Kids we hope you will invite your friends to join you!

4.  We had 50+ people attend the worship service in the courtyard last Sunday.  There was a great spirit there and it was so nice to see everyone.  If you came to this event, thanks for coming and I hope to see you worshiping with us in person on Sunday, September 27th.


From Pastor Dan Colthorp

1. Due to many people being gone over the Labor Day Weekend we will be recording that worship service early and posting it on Saturday, August 5th.  That means there will be no Live Stream for the Sunday, September 6th worship service.

2. On Sunday, September 13th, we will have 2 worship services.  We will Live Stream at 11:00 AM and have an in person worship service in the Courtyard at 4:00 PM.  Please bring a camp chair or blanket and a face mask.  We will sing a few songs, take prayer request and pray, hear scriptures read to us, have a message, and close with prayer and a song.  If you feel comfortable worshiping outdoors with your church family, then please come.  If you do not feel comfortable coming out yet, please stay home.  We don't want anyone to feel pressured to come back to church for face to face worship.  We want people to come back when they feel ready.

3. We are waiting to hear what Governor Whitmer does regarding executive orders and the number of people we can have indoors for worship.  When she increases the indoor capacity to 50 or more for indoors we will gather back together for indoor face to face worship with hand sanitizer stations, social distancing, wiping down pews between services, and what we were doing in July.

4.  Judy Thompson's Women's Bible Study is meeting at the church at 5:30 PM if you would like to join this small group.  Lorie Kraus' Wednesday Women's group is meeting online.  If you would like to join that group, please contact Lorie Kraus and she can send you the link.  The Men's Saturday Breakfast and Bible Study continues to meet online on Saturdays, at 8:00 AM.  If you would like to join this group online, please contact Bill Funk.  Speaking of Bill Funk, his Co-Ed Adult Sunday School Class meets online every Sunday, 11:00 AM if you would like to join them contact Bill Funk for the link.


From Pastor Dan Colthorp

With the Governors new executive order only allowing indoor gatherings of 10 or less, we will be going back to online worship only for the month of August.  
We will live stream a blended worship service at 11:00 AM every Sunday during the month of August so we hope you will join us for the Live Stream.  Go to our YouTube page or Facebook page to join the live stream.

To view a service after Sunday morning, go to Online Worship under the WORSHIP tab or directly to YouTube.

The blended service will include hymns played on the piano or organ and worship songs played and sung by the praise band.  There will also be prayers, scripture, sermon, and a time to give to the church or other worthy causes.  Please join us for worship online and invite your friends and family members to join us,too.

 OTHER IMPORTANT CHURCH NEWS:  The Rummage sale has been canceled and will hopefully be rescheduled to another time in the year.  Family Camp is still on as of now, but that may change, so be watching your emails. 


From Pastor Dan Colthorp

We are planning to have face-to-face worship on Sunday, June 28th.

We will be asking everyone to wear a face mask, to sanitize their hands, and to socially distance themselves during worship.

There will be no Coffee Time or Sunday School classes for the first several weeks.  As the threat of this virus dissipates, we will lessen the rules and begin to offer more in the categories of fellowship and discipleship.

We also plan to start live streaming our services, so you can continue to worship with us online on Sundays at 11:00 am for the live stream OR go to the church website anytime that week to watch the service.

Reopening the Church - date TBA

We are optimistic that the Church will be open soon for both the 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. services. We will continue to have online services after we reopen for those unable to meet in person. When we reopen, there will be restrictions that will be relaxed over time.

First, we ask that all high-risk individuals stay home at this time and enjoy our online worship. Second, we ask that anyone feeling ill or running a fever and their immediate family members stay at home and enjoy our online worship. Third, we will be cleaning and sanitizing the church. We will be removing all items in the pews, including Hymnals and Bibles. Please feel free to bring in a Bible from home for your personal use. Fourth, we will be practicing physical distancing and good personal hygiene.

 Upon entering the building, please sanitize your hands and wear a mask. You will be asked to wear the mask during the entire time you are in the church building. Masks will be provided if you do not have your own.

 There will be no greeters, no ushers, no welcome desk, no fellowship time, no Sunday School, no nursery, and no greeting line at the end of service. Parents, feel free to bring in activity books for your children for their personal use.

 Seating - Those in a household who are living together may sit in a pew together without distancing. Please, sit 6 feet apart from other families.

 Passing of the peace will start a few weeks after we open and then a simple bow to others will do. Thumbs up work as well.

 Holy Communion will be on hold for now.

 Offering plate - please continue to mail in your checks or give online. There will also be a place for you to drop your offering at the church. Your generous support of the church ministries and missions is greatly appreciated.

While the above contains many no’s, it is important to put our focus on God and worshiping him. Remember all of the blessings that God has put in our lives and to have hope in God’s character, promises, and power! Please let this be a judgment-free zone. If someone chooses to attend or not attend, it is a personal decision. Let us respect that decision.



United Methodist Church

2950 Lakeview Avenue

St. Joseph, MI  49085

Hours: M-F 9:00 to 3:00

Office: 269.983.3929

Email:  office@sjfirstumc.org












 9:00   Traditional Service

10:00  Classes/Coffee/Fellowship 

11:00  Casual Service

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