The messenger

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February 3, 2016

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From Your Pastor: Gratitude, Grace, and Expectations of Perfection
After an annual check-up with my oncologist I got in my vehicle and drove less than a mile to the first stoplight. There on the corner was a huge banner which read: “Shame on Parkwest Hospital”. I’ve seen such signs all over Knoxville. “Shame on” this or that hospital. “Shame on” this or that restaurant. “Shame on” this or that business. “Shame on” this or that person. I wondered if the professional “shame on” people had ever been sick and needed a doctor or hospital. I thought about all the people I had just seen in various stages of cancer being cared-for and encouraged. I thought about the surgeons standing in operating rooms and the nurses changing bandages, and the orderlies wheeling patients for tests and the maintenance people cleaning-up people’s “sicknesses” and the dieticians trying to help people eat healthily and the volunteers at the front desk and the medical technicians in the lab. I thought about all the cheerful smiles and late hours and long procedures, about the flurry of activity in the emergency room and the helicopter landing with the critical patient. Where’s the gratitude? Chrissy knows – when I am in need of medical attention: Don’t “shame on” anybody – get me to Parkwest!
On my drive home I thought about Jesus and the woman caught in the act of adultery (apparently not the man, just the woman). I can’t really imagine her “shame” and embarrassment as she was dragged before Jesus. He offered her grace and forgiveness, and encouraged her to change her ways. He also told those who “shamed” her, “He that is without sin among you, let him cast the first stone.” The Bible reports that they all left. Not a single stone was thrown that day. I wonder if the historical Jesus were here today, and an adulterous woman (or man) were thrust before him in public, what would our reaction be? We are a society of shamers and condemners (just listen to the news . . . or our politicians . . . or your neighbor . . . or your own inner voice). I’m guessing someone in our day would pick-up a rock and let it fly – to the applause of many in the crowd.
We expect perfection – if not from ourselves, certainly from others. If Christians are imperfect they must be hypocrites. If mechanics can’t fix our car on the first try they must be a charlatans. If bankers make a mistake they must be crooks. If teachers show any sign of weariness or impatience they must be unfit for the classroom. If politicians have a single view that varies from our own they must be Nazis or socialists. If others express a faith different from ours we suspect evil. If our neighbors do not embrace our values they must be shunned. Get me a rock – or a “shame on” sign!
We Methodists believe that we are called to “go on to perfection”. We believe in grace. We believe in forgiveness. We believe in the God of the second chance. We believe that we are both “created in his image” (our nature) and fallen in sin (our condition). There is good and bad in all of us. That being the case, we are, like Jesus, to embrace the best and to encourage “going on to perfection”. And we are to call down blessings on others – not shame.
~Call me when you need me. I will come.


The Good News class will be hosting our coffee fellowship this Sunday, February 7 at 9:30 in the Fellowship Hall.  Please join us!

Just wanted to let everyone know that our first Room at the Inn event was a success and blessing.  Dinner went well, we had about 28 people there (our 10 guests and an assortment of church folks to fellowship with).  Youth did set up, dinner, devotion, and evening fellowship.  Hollis Rice was our overnight host from 10-7, and Travis Campbell, Brent Hodges, Brad Miller, Ted Hotz, and Mike Brown did various shifts so we had at least 2 people there at all times.  Paula and Carlos Sandoval, and Claudia Duncan cooked and served breakfast.  I thought having the men come to our early service was great.  One of them shared during joys and concerns. He thanked St. Mark for being willing to open our doors to them.  This is a quote from him, "I slept well in the house of the Lord!"
Looking forward to the next one! 
Kelly Biggerstaff

Ash Wednesday Service ~ February 10, 7 p.m.
(Pancake Supper at 5:30, Fellowship Hall)
Palm Sunday ~ March 20, 9 & 11 a.m.
Maundy Thursday Service ~ March 24, 7 p.m.
Community Good Friday Service, March 25
Sacred Heart Catholic Church, Noon
 Easter Sunrise Service, March 27
Veteran’s Cemetery, 7 a.m.
Easter Sunday ~ March 27, 10 a.m.
Cantata: The Easter Story
(ONE Service with Choir & Orchestra)

Upcoming Room at the Inn Dates:

Saturday February 20

Friday March 4
Please contact Kelly Biggerstaff ( or Faye Fillers ( about volunteering. We will need volunteers for meals and overnight hosts.

Mission . . . Impossible? I Don’t Think So . . .

Long, long ago, on a continent not-so-far away, Jesus said “A new commandment I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another” (John 13:34).

Our Mission, St. Mark, should you accept it: To love and care for our neighbors.

Our Opportunity: To provide food, clothing, and support to students at Christenberry Elementary.

Our Need (for February):

  1. Microwaveable macaroni and cheese and microwaveable SpaghettiOs (or a donation to purchase these items)*

  2. Kleenex, Disinfecting Wipes, hand sanitizer (or a donation to purchase these items)*

  3. Volunteers to help pack food bags for students to take home over the weekend (Contact: Chrissy Faught).

  4. Prayers for the students and teachers of Christenberry.

--550-600 students (Pre-K through 5th grade)

--88% of students eligible for free or reduced lunch program.

--65 kids are sent extra food every weekend.

Our Goal: To make sure the kids of Christenberry don’t go hungry over the weekend (by providing extra, easy-prep food) and to help the teachers keep them healthy during flu season.

Thank you for any and all help that you provide. I am confident that, at the end of February (and each month after), we can say “Mission Accomplished”.

~Chrissy Faught

*Donations can be made by placing cash in an offering envelope marked “Christenberry” or by writing “Christenberry” in memo line of check.
We are celebrating

ST. MARK’S 60TH ANNIVERSARY throughout the month of February. Displays will be appearing in various areas of the church – breezeways, bulletin boards, tables, the narthex, and fellowship hall. You will have the opportunity to view pictures, albums, cookbooks, and other church memorabilia. Please take some time to stop by and celebrate the history of St. Mark! Our celebration will culminate on Sunday, February 28, with a COMBINED SERVICE AT 10:00 (Sunday School at 9:00) and a reception to follow. Former pastor Larry Carroll will be preaching. Plan now to be here and to invite others.

BookMarks will meet Tuesday, March 1 at 9:30 a.m. in the library to discuss Saving Laurel Springs by Lin Stepp.

Souper Bowl of Caring
In Romans 12:13 we are told: “Share with God’s people who are in need.  Practice hospitality.” This congregation certainly obeys that command.

You are probably aware; this Sunday is the FOOTBALL Super Bowl.  Our church will also have our S-O-U-P-E-R Bowl (of Caring). The Souper Bowl of Caring is a grassroots, faith-based crusade against hunger.   We are joining other churches, schools, organizations and individuals across the country to fight hunger and poverty by collecting dollars in soup pots as we leave worship this morning. What is collected stays in the community to help fight hunger, but we report our total to the Souper Bowl of Caring headquarters so that they can come up with a grand total. In 2015, over 6,759 groups raised over $8,121,275 and collected 3,784,467 lbs. of food with 100% going to 5,224 soup kitchens, food banks and other helping charities.  This is our 5th year participating with our collection will going to the FISH Hospitality Pantry.  May God bless our gifts.

Super Bowl Party – Our youth activity for the Sunday night, Feb. 7th is of course, our annual Super Bowl Party.  Look for an email for details.

Winter Jam – Saturday, Feb. 13 we will be going to Winter Jam!  Winter Jam is a Mega Christian Music Concert with not just one but several artist and bands.  Cost is $10 at the door but sign up is required.

No youth on Sunday, Feb. 14th.


FOR CANCELLATIONS DURING THE WEEK we will follow the Knox County Schools schedule. If Knox County schools are out, then week-day and evening activities are canceled at the church as well. If Knox County Schools release early due to weather / road conditions evening activities at St. Mark will be canceled.

WE WILL MAKE EVERY EFFORT NOT TO CANCEL SERVICES ON SUNDAY. In the event a cancellation is deemed necessary, the Pastor will seek the advice of the Lay Leader and Council Chair. We will also consider what other churches in our immediate area are deciding. Close attention will be given to multiple weather forecasts and traffic reports.

IF A SUNDAY CANCELLATION IS REQUIRED we will post the information on the church website and Facebook ( and send a church-wide email. We will also list church closings and cancellations with WBIR-TV, Channel 10 (Comcast 9), WATE-TV, Channel 6 (Comcast 13), and WVLT-TV, Channel 8 (Comcast 5).

WE WILL STRIVE to make a final decision NO LATER THAN 8:00 on Sunday morning.

IF YOU RECEIVE WORD OF A ST. MARK CLOSING please share the information with anyone you may know – especially those who may not have internet / email access.

No announcement will be made and no email will be sent if we are having Sunday services. Our default position is always that we WILL have services on Sunday.

Regardless of whether the decision is made to cancel or continue with our schedule, you are strongly encouraged to use your best discretion regarding your own safety.

In the event that we do have services and you are unable to attend, please remember that the scripture reading, sermon, and special music from our 11:00 service will be available on our website at (usually within an hour of the service).

St. Mark Basketball Schedule

2/6       11:00 at Middlebrook Pike UMC

2/13     10:00 at Middlebrook Pike UMC

We have a couple of openings in handbells.  Please contact Tyler Owens if you are interested.


A new FISH food pantry has opened The Smokey's UT Campus Pantry and it began distributing food on January 26. The funds raised at the 18th Annual Friends of Healthcare Industry Golf Tournament allowed us to make a donation of over $24,000 to FISH Pantries.  Donations like this are what keep people fed and new pantries possible.

Thank you on behalf of Mike Carver and Jim Wright of the Fish Hospitality Pantries!


Servants and Leaders for February 2016

Visitor Volunteers: 

Faye & Jerry Fillers (2/7)

Paula & Carlos Sandoval (2/14)
Gene & Nellie Bragg (2/21)
L.C. & Ann Troutt (2/28)

Jimmy & Sally Williams, Billie Smith, Dave Stott (2/7)
Bill & Jan Hogan, Rea Dolinak, Bernie Maloy (2/14)
Brent & Lee Hodges, Harold Mitchell, Bryan Carter (2/21)
Gene Frazer, Brian Badgett, Lynn Hatcher, Randy Badgett (2/28)


Liturgist – Audrey Campbell
Altar Guild –
Janet Larson & Rea Dolinak
CD Ministry – 
Ralph & Mary Brockett

Visitor Volunteers: 

Faye & Jerry Fillers (2/7)
Paula & Carlos Sandoval (2/14)
Gene & Nellie Bragg (2/21)
L.C. & Ann Troutt (2/28)

Offering and Attendance































St. Mark United

Methodist Church

Prayer List

"From the Bottom of our Hearts 2015 Mission Tree”

Thanks to all that helped make the drive for sweat pants, underwear, and diapers so successful this holiday season. We were able to collect over 60+ pair sweat pants, 15+ packages of underwear and disposable diapers to benefit Christenberry Elementary School, KARM, and Knox County Parent and Teacher Program.

Your 2015 Mission Team


Fred Alcorn

Walter Boliak

Phyllis Britton

Mike Carver

Delores Cain

Nancy Comingore

Noah Compton

Kendra Drew

Delores Ellis

Sandy Fair

Marion Warlick Ferrill

Angie Johnston

Meg Kranaskas

Albert Lyons

Clarence Mack, Jr.

Ida Maloy

Nancy Mason

Sally McLemore

Gloria Pierce

Marie and Garland Pobletts

Anthony Reiner

Jerry Smith

Harvey Stidom

Lisa and Zechariah Thomas

Mark Tidman

Kathy Wade

Waylon Cash Roark
Steve Dolinak, Elmcroft

Joe Guess, Manorhouse

Mary Haughton, Shannondale

Connie Kinlaw, NHC Fort Sanders

Dick Layman, Huntsville, AL

Ann Linebaugh, Arbor Terrace

Myra Payne, Shannondale
Minnie Alcorn

Dottie Bales

Anne Bledsoe

Michele Boliak

Mike Carver

B. J. Clark

Brenda Haymore

Bud Shipley


The St. Mark PRAYER TEAM meets the second Saturday of each month. We share a light breakfast, have a brief devotional, update our prayer list, and pray for those who need our prayers – all in about an hour! You are invited to join us in the Whorley Fellowship Hall on Saturday, February 13, at 9:30.

2/5     Kim Sunkes
2/6     Roger Cass
2/8     David Jones
2/14   Anne Bledsoe
          Dick Larson
2/15   Oritha Thomas  

2/21   Mary Ruth Carter
2/22   Lucy Simpson
          Ralph Brockett
2/25   Lynn Hatcher
          Elvin Joseph
2/26   Jessica Pierce
2/29   Bernie Maloy

VOLUNTEERS NEEDED…  to take Communion to our homebound members once each month.  If you can help please let the pastor know. or 588-0808)

St. Mark is looking for a part-time (paid) NURSERY WORKER. If you are interested in applying or recommending someone, please contact Kim Sunkes (

MORE THAN WORDS: The Apostles’ Creed
February 7 – “I Believe in the HOLY SPIRIT” (Acts 1:6-8)
February 14 – “I Believe in THE CHURCH” (Ephesians 5:25-27)
February 21 – “I Believe in FORGIVENESS” (1 John 1:8-10)
February 28 – St. Mark’s 60th Anniversary (Larry Carroll Preaching)
March 6 – “I Believe in THE FUTURE” (1 Corinthians 15:12-26, 51-58)
PLEASE NOTE: You may listen to or share the 11:00 scripture reading, sermon, and anthem by going to our website at:

Please sign up for the church website if you haven’t already done so! We are trying to channel our church’s communications through the website as much as possible now, and we want to make sure you receive the news and information we’re sending out. The new website is Signing up for the new website is very easy and can take less than a minute. You will be asked to provide a User Name and Password that you will choose for yourself, and then to provide your email address and phone number and indicate how you would prefer to receive church communications (by email, text or both). Also be sure to change your web bookmarks to reflect the new website address.  The old address has expired and is no longer automatically forwarding to our new address. Thank you!

7001 Northshore Drive

Knoxville, TN 37919

Sharon Zink

1404 Aldenwood Lane

Knoxville 37919


7001 Northshore Drive

Knoxville, TN 37919
Pastor – Kenny Faught

Office Manager - Liz Mann

Music Director – Tyler Owens

Church Musician - Edward Pierce

Youth Director - Paula Sandoval

Children’s Director - Kim Sunkes

Nursery – Sierra Russell
Preschool Director – Anne Soro

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