DSM First Church

Advent @ First

This year celebrates the 200th anniversary of one of the best loved Christmas carols "Silent Night." To honor this anniversary our Advent theme is "Calm and Bright: 200 Years of Silent Night." Each week we would like to contribute to the peace and light, calm and bright in the world by donating items to various local organizations.

We are collecting children's books, peanut butter, gloves, hats and scarves and toiletries. There are bins located in the narthex for you to place your items. Thank you for making the world a little brighter.


Some years Christmas can be a difficult and painful time. Instead of happily singing Christmas songs we need the time and space to acknowledge our sadness and to know we are not alone. This year our Longest Night Service will be held on December 20th at 5:00 pm in the upstairs chapel. Join with others in sharing and hearing prayers, scripture and music that acknowledge God's presence if for those who mourn and struggle.

Everyone regardless of church background - or no church background - is welcome.


Join us in our beautiful sanctuary as we celebrate the birth of Jesus. Our candlelight service will begin at 7:00 pm on Christmas Eve, December 24th.


This year 100% of our Christmas offering will be divided between the United Methodist Committee on Relief (UMCOR) for US recovery work and support for Chin Cho, our missionary in Mongolia.

This year the US has been ravaged by fires, hurricanes and floods. Our gifts will help UMCOR be present with all those trying to recover. Our missionary serves as a UM pastor who is working as the head of the UM mission in Mongolia.

Thanks for your generous gifts that will make a difference!




Baker's Square Pie Cards are back!

Just in time for the holidays we are once again selling pie cards. If you are in charge of providing pies for your Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner, we have you covered. These cards also make great stocking stuffers.

Each card costs $15 and entitles you to any pie (does not include cheesecake or cake). For every pie sold the church receives $5 that will be used toward the support of our missionary in Mongolia, Chin Cho.



Looking for a gift for someone who has everything? Stop by our Alternative Gift Market Sundays until Christmas. Gifts you choose will honor your friends or loved ones while providing much needed financial support to ministries that give assistance to hungry, homeless and hurting people in our society, both locally and abroad. Your gift gives twice and brings joy in double measure!


First Church is excited to announce our 2019 mission trip to Mongolia! We will be departing Des Moines on June 15th and returning on June 26th. Keep checking back for more details. They will be posted on our website as they become available. If you are interested in joining us, please send an email to christine@dmfirstchurch.org and you will be placed on our email list. This is going to be a once in a lifetime trip!





Here at First Church we are about "making disciples of Jesus Christ for the transformation of the world." We believe that if we live our lives following the example of Jesus, we can make a positive impact on this world that God loves and cares about.

We are all on a faith journey. Some of us have just begun that journey. Others have only taken a few steps and others have been on the road for a long time. Some of us are discouraged travelers, some have made wrong turns and we all have experienced peaks, valleys and plateaus. Once we have declared that we will follow Jesus, the faith journey begins and it is a life-long journey.

We invite you to join us on the journey. It won't always be easy but as United Methodists we believe that God's unmerited love surrounds us, encourages us, goes before us and upholds us.

Let us walk this faith journey together. Join us for worship or any of our ministries and activities. Let's work together to transform this world!

Our Pathways to Discipleship

As with any journey there are many pathways we take to reach our destination. Each pathway is important. Disciples here at First Church are asked to explore five different pathways. These pathways help us grow in our faith and we ask that members intentionally traverse them on an on-going basis.

Christian Education is an essential ministry of the church because to be a disciple of Jesus is to be a learner. Learning is essential to discipleship formation and growth.

John Wesley the founder of Methodism believed that prayer is "the grand means of drawing near to God." Prayer deepens our relationship with God and raises our awareness of God's presence in our lives.

Attending worship is a way to draw ourselves away from the nitty gritty of life and into the presence of God. Where two or three are gathered, God will be present.

Like the Jesus we follow, Christians are willing to give their lives for the sake of others and are willing to become agents of change and reconciliation. We are the hands and feet of Jesus.

All we have is a gift from God. We are called upon to give our financial resources, our time and our talents to further the Kingdom of God.

May you be blessed as you walk your journey of faith.

Measuring Your Discipleship Pathway Progress

On any journey it is important to periodically stop and check the map (or GPS) and see where you are.

Ask yourself:


Church Office hours

The church office is open Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to noon.


Subscribe to Cross Notes, our weekly E-Newsletter that includes Pastor Eric's weekly devotion,"First Thoughts"!

First Church's weekly e-newsletter is delivered Friday mornings.

If you want to subscribe, you may do so here.

1001 Pleasant Street
Des Moines, IA 50309

Copyright 2009-2011 First United Methodist Church.  Photographs above of the empty sanctuary and the Kingman Stained Glass window in the sanctuary ceiling are used courtesy of Main Street Studio.  Photograph of children's time in worship with children wearing hats is copyrighted by Carrie Yonley and used with her permission.  She retains the copyright to this photo.


We Welcome All

First United Methodist Church, at the top of 10th Street in downtown Des Moines, strives to love others as Christ loves us and, in doing so, to be the Body of Christ in word and deed.

As the Body of Christ, we welcome all of God's children, knowing that each is created in the image of God.  We welcome people of all gender identities, sexual orientations, ages, races, ethnicities, family configurations, and physical and mental capabilities to join us in full participation as we come together to worship God and then go out to share God's love in the world around us.

Worship with us every Sunday at 10:30 a.m.

To read Pastor Eric's weekly devotion "First Thoughts," sign up for our weekly e-newsletter, Cross Notes, here.








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