625 Hamilton Ave.
Palo Alto, CA 94301

fax 650.323.3923


News and Upcoming Events - You are welcome here!


Welcome CenterWelcome! Whether you are visiting the Silicon Valley, or are looking for a new church home, we welcome you to First Church!

We offer a variety of worship celebrations, small groups and classes to nourish your soul, as well as numerous ways to serve both the local community and the world.

Programs and opportunities for fellowship for kids, teens, tweens, young adults, adults and seniors abound.

Join us for worship at 8:45 and 10:45 am.

Our 10:45 am classic worship service is celebrated in the Sanctuary.

Our Upstream service is at 8:45 am in the Chapel.

Can't make it to Church? Watch the live worship webcast. Join us online Sunday morning at 10:45 am.

Questions? - If you would like to learn more about First Church please contact Pastor Linda 650-323-6167 x101

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Over 1000 toys and gifts are needed for the Toy and Teen Shoppe

Help brighten a child's Christmas.

The InnVision Shelter Network is once again collecting gifts for their annual “Toy Shoppe”. The Toy Shoppe is a way for local, low-income families to take an active role in the gift-giving tradition of the holiday season.

It enables parents to select, wrap, and give gifts for their children. The new toys, books and games -- given by people throughout Palo Alto -- are set up in a “store”. Parents will receive “tickets” from InnVision and use them to select toys for their children for the holidays.

Last year, we provided over 1,200 toys to local children who otherwise may have gone without.

To fill the shelves of the "Toy Shoppe" we need new, unwrapped toys and gift cards for children of all ages. We need gifts for children of all ages – infant to teenagers, including stocking stuffers, and gift-wrapping supplies (paper, tape, tissue, tags, ribbons, bows).

Gift ideas include trucks, board games, stuffed animals, hand-held video games, nonviolent toys, sports equipment, pre-school development toys, multi-racial & multi-cultural dolls, books for all ages, portable music players, gift cards (Target, Walmart, Kohls, etc.), DVDs and make-up. Gift cards are especially appropriate for teens and should be $10 to $50 (maximum).

Drop them off at the First United Methodist Church of Palo Alto, 625 Hamilton Ave. in downtown Palo Alto. Our office is open weekdays from 8:00 am to 4:00 pm.

Starting on November 16, 2015 you can bring your new, unwrapped gifts to church and put them in the bin in the Narthex by Sunday, December 13, 2015. You may also bring them to the office during the week, or to the Advent Carols Service on December 6th.

The deadline is Sunday, December 13, 2015.

Let’s brighten the lives of some families this holiday season!

Contact Angela Mosqueda 650-323-6167 x103 for more info.

Toy Shoppe at First Church Palo Alto

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Advent Candlelight Dinner

Advent Candlelight Dinner at First Church Palo AltoJoin us on Sunday, December 6, 2015 for our annual Advent Candlelight dinner. It starts at about 7:00 pm, right after the
Advent Carols Service. This is an elegantly catered congregational dinner event with special entertainment including the Main Street Singers.

The cost of the dinner is $35 per person.

Make your reservations online here.

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Advent Procession with Carols Service

Advent2003Carols150113.jpgSunday, December 6, 2015 marks the 20th anniversary of our Advent Procession with Carols Service.

As in past years, the Chancel Choir will lead a special evening service of lessons, anthems and carols designed to usher us into the Advent season of meditation and preparation.

So join us on Sunday, December 6, 2015 at 6:00 pm in the Sanctuary for this First Church Advent tradition!

An Advent Organ Meditation and Carol Sing begins at 5:45 pm.

After the service join us for our annual Candlelight Dinner. Reservations are required.

And please bring a new, unwrapped toy, or a book or other gift for a teen with you to the service for the Toy Shoppe toy drivive.

Show rest of 'Advent Procession with Carols Service'...

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November 22, 2015 Sermon - Give Thanks - Pastor Shijung Shim (Audio)

Pastor Shijung Shim of First Church Palo AltoListen to Pastor Shiung's November 22, 2015 sermon.

The reading was Thessalonians 5:16-18.

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December Issue of Insights is Online!

The December issue of our Insights newsletter is now online.

Click here to read this month's news-filled issue!

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Annual Women's Retreat - Sign Up Now

Women's Retreat at First Church Palo Alto
Registration for the 2016 Women’s Retreat is underway.

This year’s spiritual director will be the Rev. Marylee Sheffer and the theme is "God-Sighting"

Mark your calendars! The Retreat is scheduled for January 8 - 10, 2016 at the Villa Maria del Mar in Santa Cruz.

The cost for a single room is $315 and a double room for $245.

Download the Registration Form.

The deadline for registration is Monday, December 3, 2015.

Questions – please contact Ruth Letts

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October 18, 2015 Sermon - Understanding Other Religions: Hinduism - Pastor Beth Cademartori

Pastor Beth of First Church Palo AltoListen to Pastor Beth's October 18, 2015 sermon. This was the third sermon in the Understanding Other Religion series.

The reading was John 20:24-28.

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Hanging of the Greens

On Saturday, November 28, 2015 we'll be preparing the church for the Advent and Christmas seasons.

We'll be hanging the greens, putting up the Christmas trees and decorating the church.

Help us get First Church ready for Advent and Christmas.

Can you join us from 9:00am - noon on Saturday, November 28th?

There are lots of things to decorate, so we can use everyone's help.

Strong coffee will start the day and lively refreshments will follow.

If you can help, just show up!

Thank you.

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October 11, 2015 Sermon - Understanding Other Religions: Buddhism - Pastor Shijung Shim (Audio)

Pastor Shijung Shim of First Church Palo AltoListen to Pastor Shiung's October 11, 2015 sermon. This was the second sermon in the Understanding Other Religions series.

The reading was John 3:1-7.

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Church Conference

Please join us at 12:30 pm in the Kohlstedt Hall on Sunday, November 29, 2015 for a Church Conference.

Our District Superintendent, Staci Current, will preside. Annual church conference is a time when our congregation gathers to celebrate what God has done for us this year. Each member who attends will receive reports, elect officers, and affirm lay servant ministries and clergy candidacy. A light lunch and nursery care will be provided.

All church members are eligible to vote at the church conference.

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2nd Sunday Collection

Every month First Church collects items for clients of the Opportunity Center and InnVision Shelter Network.

When you stop at the supermarket, drugstore or department store for your own needs, pick up a few extra items. Then bring them to Church on the second Sunday of the month,

Items Needed: deodorant, disposable razors, travel size toothpaste, flashdrives, men's pants - plus sizes, men's socks and underwear (new) - plus sizes, women's undergarments - bras, socks, underwear (new) - plus sizes.

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New Adult Sunday School Class - 2 Class Times

Come learn about the core texts for our faith! Richard Schramm will be leading a new study, using one of The Great Courses, Explore the New Testament from the Gospel of Matthew to the Book of Revelation.

The class meets every Sunday morning at 9:45 am in the Wesley Room and every Sunday evening at 5:00 pm in the Patio Room.

Bart Ehrman, Professor of Religion at the University of North Carolina, directs 24 half-hour video lectures. Crafted as a review of the 27 books of the New Testament, Dr. Ehrman combines theological research with archeology to assist in understanding each book's content, meaning, authorship, intended audience and historical accuracy.

As always, you can attend one, some, or all of the lectures. No homework is required. All written materials are supplied during the Sunday School class. All are welcome.

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Stephen Ministry

stephenLogo.gifAre you struggling with one of life’s many issues? Divorce... grieving... job loss... family problems... spiritual malaise... health... job dissatisfaction... depression... unsettled problems...

A Stephen Minister. is here to help.

Stephen Ministers are specially trained lay people, gifted with sensitivity and listening skills. They are available to offer Christian care to those experiencing grief, loneliness, illness or a traumatic transition of any kind.

To get help from a Stephen Minister, contact Pastor Linda 650-323-6167 x101

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Altar Flowers

You are invited to sign up to sponsor the altar flowers for Sunday worship in memory, honor, or celebration of a loved one or event.

The cost is $70.

Click here to sign up online.

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Young Adults Schedule

Our young adults have a full schedule of events planned. All are welcome.

Young Adult Small Group The group meets every other Wednesday in the Wesley Room at 7pm.

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First School: Nurturing Our Community's Children


Are you looking for a preschool?

Enrollment opportunities are available at First School.

Art, drama, music, stories gymnastics, cooking and nature study, with an emphasis on social development and Kindergarten readiness are included.

First School is licensed by the state of California Social Services Department and is staffed by qualified and experienced teachers.

You are welcome to stop by for a visit and experience our program first hand.

Find us at www.firstschool.org

Contact Michelle Noke at 650-321-3871 for more information.

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Monthly All-Church Potluck

First Church Potluck SupperThe All-church, Old-fashioned Methodist Potluck Supper started by the Koinonia Fellowship Group with an enthusiastic response is continuing. 

It is now regularly scheduled on the church calendar for the 3rd Saturday of each month at 5:30pm in Fellowship Hall.

We made it early so you can bring your children (and don't forget your friends).

Please bring your appetites and a casserole or salad or dessert to serve 12 people. Beverages, bread, and utensils will be provided.

Let Janet Nicholls (650) 321-9039 know you are coming! If you need a ride, let Janet know and we’ll arrange for someone to pick you up and take you home.

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Online Prayer Requests

Prayer75121.jpgDo not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7

If you have a prayer request, you can now submit it online to our pastors. All prayer requests are held in confidence.

To submit a prayer request, click here.

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Donate Online to First Church

We now offer the ability to make an online donation today to the First United Methodist Church of Palo Alto securely through PayPal.

Your gift is vital to our mission: The Children in our Midst, the Mission at Our Doorstep, a Place of Hospitality and Grace.

Donations help us provide the many programs and ministries of the church including: Children and Youth Ministries, Faith Development and Education Programs, Community Outreach Mission and Service Projects, and Worship. Please note a PayPal account is not required.

To make a donation, just click on the Donate button below.

If you have any questions, please send an email to giving@firstpaloalto.com.

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Next Sunday: Join us for worship at 8:45 and 10:45 am.

Can't make it to Church?
Watch online
at 10:45 am

Over 1000 toys and gifts are needed for the Toy and Teen Shoppe
Help brighten a child's Christmas by donating a new, unwrapped toy to fill the shelves of the "Toy Shoppe". We also need books or other gifts for teens. The deadline is Sunday, December 13th

Advent Candlelight Dinner
Join us December 6th for an elegantly catered dinner, featuring the music of the Main Street Singers. Make your reservations here.

Advent Procession with Carols Service
Join us at 6:00pm on December 6th for this beloved First Church Advent tradition. Can't make it to Church?
Watch online

November 22, 2015 Sermon - Give Thanks - Pastor Shijung Shim (Audio)

December Issue of Insights is Online!
Read the latest issue today!

Annual Women's Retreat - Sign Up Now
Marylee Sheffer is the retreat leader for our annual Women's Retreat. Join us. Learn more and sign up here.

October 18, 2015 Sermon - Understanding Other Religions: Hinduism - Pastor Beth Cademartori