Recent News

The Staff-Parish Relations Committee (SPRC) is pleased to advise the congregation that Rev. John L. Shellenberger will be joining the First Church staff as Assistant to the Pastor. Pastor Shellenberger will begin part-time work with us in late summer or early fall. He will be filling the vacancy created by Pastor Reed’s full-time retirement.

Pastor Shellenberger will focus on visitation, but will also preach, serve as liturgist, lead Bible studies and Sunday School classes, support Access Ministries and Rejoicing Spirits, and assist Pastor Denny and the rest of the staff team as situations require.

Pastor Shellenberger earned a B.A. from Messiah College and a Master of Divinity from Wesley Theological Seminary. He has served a range of congregations in his career, mostly in Central Pennsylvania. He will be retiring from the position of Lead Pastor at Grace United Methodist Church in Lemoyne at the end of June.

He and his wife, Merri, have three children: Jonathan, who died in 1983, Beth, and Megan; and three grandchildren. Merri is a reading specialist in the Shippensburg School District. He and Merri enjoy traveling and spending time with family.

In addition to pastoral activities, Rev. Shellenberger is an avid golfer, woodworker and gardener. His agricultural credentials include the Master Gardening Certificate from Penn State Extension. He feeds the soul with a certificate in the Ministry of Spiritual direction and the body with an interest in cooking.

Pastor John and Merri are as eager to be part the First Church Community as we are to have them. Each conversation strengthens our conviction that once again, God has blessed us with the right people at the right time.

Please join us in welcoming them, and making them part of the First Church family!

First Church and the Homeland Center will offer a six-week Bereavement Support Group this summer.

Brian Medkeff-Rose, a Homeland bereavement counselor, will facilitate. The program offers coping skills, healing, self-awareness, and support from other group members.

Sessions will run on Tuesdays, July 11 to Aug. 15, from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m. on-site at First Church.

Registration is required. To register or for more information, call Brian at (717) 409-8889.

Thanks to all who visited First United Methodist Church on Jubilee Day! And a special thanks to all who made a freewill offering to benefit a youth mission trip next month!

Will our legacy bless others for years to come?  Based on the book of Genesis.   Click here to learn more.

Show your support of the First Church Youth Group by dining at Chick-fil-A, 6416 Carlisle Pike, Mechanicsburg, on Wednesday, June 21.

Chick-fil-A will donate a portion of the proceeds on both dine-in and drive-thru orders during the hours of 5:00 to 8:00 p.m. to support a First Church youth mission trip to Alaska in July.

Click here to get a flyer you can print and bring along to Chick-fil-A to make sure your meal gets added to the total. Hope to see you there!

The First Church Library is accepting donations of gently-used, DVDs and CDs for a Book Sale on Aug. 19. We are accepting both fiction and non-fiction works, for adults, teens and children.

Donations can be dropped off at the church during normal business hours Monday through Friday, and on Sunday mornings.
For more information, call or e-mail the church at (717) 766-4611 or

The Children’s Library of First Church has been relocated to the main Library on the first floor, near the alley entrance to the sanctuary. Previously, the Children’s Library was located on the second floor.

The library offers a variety of Christian-based children’s books. Parents, grandparents and adults are invited to bring children in and browse. Books can be checked out under the parents’ account and can be borrowed for up to two weeks.

For more information, call or e-mail the church at (717) 766-4611 or

First Church will hold a Rejoicing Spirits worship service on Sunday, June 25 at 4:00 p.m. All are welcome!

The service is specially designed and adapted for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, and their families. An informal atmosphere, brief messages, and lots of music and fellowship opportunities.

Rejoicing Spirits services are held on the fourth Sunday of each month.

First United Methodist Church is seeking an organist/pianist. Responsibilities include playing for two Sunday morning and other special services, accompanying two adult choirs, and accompanying services where an electronic keyboard may be preferred. Some of these duties may be shared with another organist/pianist. Send resume, including education and work history via email to or by mail to First United Methodist Church, 135 W. Simpson Street, Mechanicsburg, PA 17055.

Join us at Mission Central on Wednesday, June 21 at 6:00 p.m. to help sort and bag donated groceries. The groceries are then transported to the Bethesda Mission shelter in Harrisburg to be shared with residents in need.

Mission Central, a warehouse and affiliate of the Susquehanna Conference of The United Methodist Church, collects and distributes relief supplies and humanitarian aid locally, nationally and internationally as needed in response to natural disasters and other crises.

First Church members volunteer at Mission Central the third Wednesday evening of every month to prepare the groceries.

For more information or to volunteer, call the church office at (717) 766-4611.

© 2015 First United Methodist Church | 135 West Simpson Street Mechanicsburg, PA 17055 Phone: (717) 766-4611.
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