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 one of our Co-Pastors.

Pastor Sadie 650-323-6167 x102           Pastor Linda 650-323-6167 x101

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November 23, 2014 - Gratitude - Pastor Sadie Stone (Audio)

A Pastor Sadie Sermon at First Church Palo AltoListen to Pastor Sadie's November 23, 2014 sermon for Thanksgiving.

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Saturday - Hanging of the Greens

On Saturday, November 29, 2014 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 29th?

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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Foster Children Need Bags

Foster Children in our community need carry-on bags to transport their personal belongings.

Please join the UMW and the Outreach Committee in supporting local foster children by donating a new or gently used bag.

Help us collect 50 bags by December 15, 2014.

On Sundays, bring the bags to the Narthex. During the week please bring them to the office.

The bags will be donated to Unity Care Group, a registered 501(c)3 organization. Your donation is tax deductible.

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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 Monday November 17, 2014 you can bring your new, unwrapped gifts to church and put them in the bin in the Narthex by Sunday, December 7, 2014. You may also bring them to the office during the week, or to the Advent Carols Service on December 7th.

The deadline is Sunday, December 8, 2014.

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 Study is Under Way

Pastor Sadie and Pastor Linda are leading a study for Advent using the book When God Comes Down by James Harnish.

This is a five-week study, providing one lesson for each week of Advent and one for Christmas. Each lesson includes a key Scripture, a brief reflection, discussion/reflection questions, a brief prayer, and a focus for the coming week.

The study will be offered at two times: on Thursday mornings at 10 am and Thursday evenings at 6:30 pm in the Patio Room.

Please join us for this Advent study to better appreciate When God Comes Down. Read more about the book in the November Insights.

See Pastor Linda or Pastor Sadie to get a copy of the book.

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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.

They're starting a new study using the book, Under Wraps: The Gift We Never Expected by Jessica LeGrone, Andy Nixon, Rob Renfroe, Ed Robb.

Small Group Schedule:

November 19th: Introduction & Chapter 1: "God is Expectant"
December 3rd: Chapter 2 & 3: "God is Dangerous" & "God is Jealous"
December 17th: Chapters 4 & Epilogue: "God is Faithful"

All are welcome to join the small group even if you've never attended.

Young Adult Fellowship Skate Night! The Young Adults are invited to the Winter Lodge in Palo Alto for a Ice Skating Night on Wednesday December 10th from 8-10pm. On Wednesday nights the Winter Lodge hosts an adult-only skating time. Join us for some fun & fellowship on the ice!

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UMW Christmas Coffee

United Methodist Women Christmas Coffee at First Church Palo AltoThe annual United Methodist Women Christmas Coffee will be held in the Patio Room on Saturday, December 13, 2014 at 10:00am.

All women are welcome.

Childcare provided upon request.

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Advent Procession with Carols Service

Advent2003Carols150113.jpgSunday, December 7, 2014 marks the nineteenth 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 7, 2014 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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Advent Candlelight Dinner

Advent Candlelight Dinner at First Church Palo AltoJoin us on Sunday, December 7, 2014 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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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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October 26, 2014 - The Five Methodist Vows - #5: Witness - Pastor Sadie Stone (Audio)

A Pastor Sadie Sermon at First Church Palo AltoListen to Pastor Sadie's October 26, 2014 sermon.

This was the fifth sermon in a series on the vows we take when we join the United Methodist Church.

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Job Opening - Preschool Teacher

Careers at the First United Methodist Church of Palo AltoOur First School Preschool is looking for a preschool teacher to join our staff.

Full time. Hourly rate based on experience. Vacation, PTO, and medical and dental included.

To support the Director and other teachers in carrying out the mission of First School which strives to provide a nurturing environment for the social, emotional and cognitive growth of children between the ages 2-1⁄2 - 6 years in a small, personalized church setting.

• Minimum of 18 years of age.
• Must possess a minimum of 12 Early Childhood Education (ECE) units and at
least.6 months of work experience in a licensed childcare center or comparable
group child care program.
• Must possess the ability to work effectively with children; warm, calm demeanor;
empathy and understanding; and most importantly, under the direct supervision
of the lead teacher.
• Be empathetic and understanding with children; have a genuine affection for and
interest in, preschool children.
• Good organizational skills and attention to detail
• Knowledge of health, nutrition and allergies
• Excellent references
• Background/fingerprint clearance
• Maintain a supportive relationship with children, staff, and parents.

Learn more about First School at www.firstschool.org

To apply, please send your resume to Michelle Noke at michellebnoke@gmail.com, or call her at (650) 321-3871.

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YOFPA - Youth Group Schedule

Sunday November 23rd – Game night! (And not just board games all kinds of games using the entire church).

Sunday November 30th – No Youth Group. Hope you all had a great Thanksgiving!

December 7th - Ice Skating at Winter Lodge in Palo Alto. 3:30-5pm. For those who can't or don't want to skate join us anyways for hot chocolate, snacks and fellowship.

December 14th - 6:00pm-7:30pm Family Christmas Caroling over at Channing House. Wear your best christmas sweaters and hats, bring your Christmas Cheer as we offer the gift of our voices to the residents of Channing House. The Entire Family is invited to join us!

December 21st - Bethlehem A.D. in RedWood City. We'll meet at the Church at 6pm and go over together.

December 24th - 5:30pm Christmas Program. The Children and Youth of First Church present, "Once Upon A Manger."

December 28th & January 4th - No YOFPA enjoy your Christmas Break!


June 24–28, 2015
Youth 2015, Orlando, Florida I know this seems far away but we’ll need to register and buy plane tickets before we even know it. This is an amazing life changing opportunity for our youth to be involved in worship, mission, fellowship, small group learning with 1000s of other UMC Youth. It’s an incredible event! Please be prayerfully considering if your youth is willing to commit. We do have a Centennial Endowment Grant to help offset much of the cost and we will be looking for other ways to be in service and mission as we prepare for the trip

Interested in youth group activities? Contact Pastor Sadie 650-323-6167 x102

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Job Opening - Children and Youth Ministry Coordinator

Careers at the First United Methodist Church of Palo AltoThe First United Methodist Church of Palo Alto is seeking an able candidate for the position of Coordinator of Children and Youth Ministries.

We are seeking a dynamic, cooperative leader who enjoys working with children and youth to assist the pastoral team in developing and growing the children and youth ministries of the church.

Hours will vary depending upon current programs, including a regular commitment for four hours on Sunday morning and two hours on Sunday evening, in addition to weekly staff meetings and other unscheduled planning and special event time.

To apply, please send your resume to Marcia Sterling at mks@sonic.net

No phone calls please.

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October 5, 2014 - Rock of Ages, Cleft for Me - The Rev. Sione Halafau (Audio)

Listen to the Rev. Sione Halafau's October 5, 2014 sermon.

Rev. Halafau is the pastor of the First Tongan United Methodist Church of Palo Alto.

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September 14, 2014 - Trusting in God. Faith that is lived - Pastor Sadie Stone (Audio)

A Pastor Sadie Sermon at First Church Palo AltoListen to Pastor Sadie's September 14, 2014 sermon.

The reading was Hebrews 11:8-18.

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September 7, 2014 Sermon - Pastor Linda Holbrook (Audio)

Sermons from Pastor Linda Holbrook of First Church Palo AltoListen to Pastor Linda's September 7, 2014 sermon.

The reading was Isaiah 43:16-21.

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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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3RD S3SSION - Young Adult Worship Is Under Way!

3RD S3SSION Young Adult Worship at First Church Palo Alto

Our Young Adult Fellowship has started 3RD S3SSION, a new monthly worship service.

Join us on the third Thursday of every month at 8:00 pm in the Wesley Room for an intimate, meditative worship time together.

For more information about "Third Sesh", contact Pastor Sadie 650-323-6167 x102.

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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

Young Adult Worship:

November 23, 2014 - Gratitude - Pastor Sadie Stone (Audio)

Saturday - Hanging of the Greens
Help the Worship Team decorate the Church for Advent and Christmas on Saturday morning, November 29th

Foster Children Need Bags
Please join the UMW and the Outreach Committee in supporting local foster children by donating a new or gently used bag. Help us collect 50 bags by December 15, 2014.

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 7th

Advent Study is Under Way
Pastor Sadie and Pastor Linda are leading a study for Advent using the book When God Comes Down by James Harnish. Learn more here.

Young Adults Schedule
Our young adults have planned a full schedule of events. Check out what's going on here.

UMW Christmas Coffee
You're invited to the annual UMW Christmas Coffee at 10:00am on Saturday, December 13th