The season of Advent, the four weeks leading up to Christmas, is the time when we prepare for and anticipate the birth of Jesus Christ. We long for salvation and look forward to a new beginning. Our members have worked together to make our worship and gathering spaces festive and inviting for all of our guests this season–we are ready to welcome you! Click here to see pictures of our decorations our Hanging of the Greens event.

What is Advent? Learn more by clicking here.

To find out what Pastor Jeff will talk about during worship each Sunday, click here.

During worship each Sunday in Advent, we light candles on our Advent Wreath. Watch the video below to understand this tradition.

Advent Calendar

There are so many ways to Connect, Grow, and Serve at Topeka First United Methodist Church during Advent! Together we can prepare our hearts, and warm the hearts of those around us, for the good of the city.

Saturday, November 25th

MKA Rescue Run

Runners and walkers of all abilities are invited to join the Topeka First United Methodist Church team at 5 p.m. for the 11th Annual Miracle on Kansas Avenue Rescue Run. Race proceeds benefit Topeka Rescue Mission–one of our congregation’s strategic missions partners. If you’re not a runner, come cheer on the church team! To get involved, contact Randall Hodgkinson.

Miracle on Kansas Avenue

At 6 p.m., bundle up and head downtown for the Miracle on Kansas Avenue Parade! Be sure to watch for the Topeka First United Methodist float. Volunteers from our church will walk ahead of the parade and hand out invitations to our next event of this exciting evening…

Cocoa, Cookies & Carols

Join us for our new Topeka tradition! As the end of the parade passes by, we invite you to walk back to our church building to warm up with some Cocoa, Cookies & Carols. Beginning at 6:45, we’ll serve festive treats and sing rounds of Christmas Carols to cheer your body and soul. We’ll also have bell ringers and door prizes! We hope this will be a meaningful way for you, your families and friends to center your hearts as we enter the season of Advent. We will need plenty of Topeka First UMC volunteers to provide cookies and help on the day of the event! Click here for a list of volunteer opportunities.

Downtown Connection Week

Every quarter, we designate one week to make a concentrated effort of supporting our downtown businesses. From Small Business Saturday on November 25th to Saturday, December 2nd, wear your Topeka First UMC gear and head downtown to meet a friend for lunch or shop for unique Christmas gifts. Thank our small business owners for making our community great by leaving a note on a post card, which you can pick up at church.

Sunday, December 3rd: First Sunday of Advent

Worship as One

On December 3rd, all three of our services will combine into one special worshiping experience. Come prepare your hearts to receive God’s gift of grace at an intimate service of Holy Communion in our Chapel at 9:15 a.m. Then, at 10 a.m., gather in the Sanctuary and let the melodies from each of our music ministries lift your hearts in expectancy of the coming Christ child. An ensemble from the cast of Topeka Civic Theatre’s “The Hunchback of Notre Dame” will also offer the gift of music.

Scripture: Jeremiah 33:14-16 and Matthew 1:18-23

Message: Carols of Christmas: O Come, O Come Emmanuel

White Gifts Procession

Join in our tradition of gathering gifts for those served by Topeka Rescue Mission during our combined 10 a.m. worship service. New clothes, household goods, and toys are all needed to spread the hope of Christ. Wrap the gifts in white paper or reusable linens to show they are all equal in value–from socks to video games, towels to microwaves–when given in love. Children and youth will lay all of the gifts at the altar in a sweet procession during the service. To learn more about White Gift Sunday and to view a list of requested items, click here to view our Current Mission Projects.

All Church Christmas Dinner

After worship, gather in Fellowship Hall for our annual family dinner at 11:15 a.m. You may purchase tickets in our Celebration Room each Sunday until December 4th. Tickets are $4 for adults, $2 for children K-6th grade, and free for children preschool and under. You may also purchase a family ticket for only $15. Plan to bring a salad or dessert to share, or volunteer to bake a turkey or sweet potatoes for the crowd.

“This Little Light” Christmas Pageant

Immediately following dinner, return to our Sanctuary for our heart-warming pageant, “This Little Light.” The children of the church will tell the Christmas story through drama and music as we celebrate the Christ child’s birth. Prophets spoke of Him, the angels announced Him, kings traveled across a continent looking for Him, and now we can have the light within us. Learn more about our annual pageant here.

Wednesday, December 6th

Family Advent Workshop

Families of children age 2 through 6th grade are invited to explore the true meaning of Christmas through togetherness and a hands-on activity. We’ll begin with dinner at 5:15 p.m., then we’ll hear a Christmas story and decorate sugar cookies depicting the central figures of the nativity. Please click here to sign up for this event.

If you would like to bake cookies for this event, please click here and look for “Bake Cookies for Advent Workshop” on the list of volunteer opportunities.

Sunday, December 10th: Second Sunday of Advent

Worship at 8:15, 9:30 & 11 a.m.

Scripture: Psalm 46

Message: Carols of Christmas: Silent Night

In addition to providing gifts for those served by Topeka Rescue Mission on White Gift Sunday, December is also our month to provide volunteers and gifts for our partner in mission, Doorstep. We will begin our drive for Doorstep on December 10th. You may bring donations to the Celebration Room. Click here for a list of requested items for Doorstep. Click here to view our list of volunteer opportunities for Doorstep, and other ways you can serve this season.

#Adulting Cookie Swap

#Adulting is our group of adults ranging from those who just graduated form high school to those who are experiencing other stages of early adulthood–starting your career, raising a young family, and learning to fold a fitted sheet! If the term #Adulting is familiar to you, you will fit right in. On December 10th at 6 p.m., bring two dozen of your most delicious holiday treats to our Cookie Swap party and come share in the festive cheer! Warm adult beverages will be provided. Email Hannah Naeger for location and details.

Click here to learn more about #Adulting at Topeka First UMC.

Monday, December 11th

Phase 2 Christmas Caroling and Pizza

Join Phase 2, our community of Boomers, for caroling and pizza. At 4:30 p.m., we will begin caroling at area retirement communities where our members live, and then meet at Glory Days Pizza on Gage for a time of fellowship at about 5:45. Plan to bring about $5 to cover pizza and beverage. Email Tiwana Whitten, Director of Adult Discipleship, for details.

Click here to learn more about Phase 2 at Topeka First UMC.

Tuesday, December 12th

A Service of Comfort & Hope

For ones who are struggling this holiday season

Are you missing a loved one? Feeling blue? Struggling with relationships? Experiencing changes? Come receive the gifts of God’s mercy and compassion at a 6:30 p.m. in our Chapel. Comforting music, readings, and prayer will guide you through this time of worship.

Sunday, December 17: Third Sunday in Advent

Big Music Sunday

Let your “Joy to the World” resound as special music from our instruments and vocalists fills our Chapel worship services at 8:15 and 9:30 a.m., and our Sanctuary worship at 11 a.m.

Scripture: Luke 1:39-56

Message: Carols of Christmas: Joy to the World

Sunday, December 24th: Fourth Sunday in Advent

Sunday Morning Worship

For weeks we have been waiting and preparing for the coming Christ…but the waiting continues. In this final worship experience before we celebrate Christ’s coming, we will again gather in the Sanctuary for one combined worship service at 10 a.m. Come back that evening to embrace the joy we have all been waiting for–the birth of Christ.

Scripture: Luke 2:1-7

Message: Carols of Christmas: Away in a Manger

Christmas Eve Night: Worship by Candlelight

The longing in our hearts for forgiveness, salvation, and a new beginning is answered with the birth of Jesus Christ. Celebrate this precious gift through story and song at one of our worship services. Join us in the Celebration Room for refreshments in-between services.

  • 5:00 p.m. Family Praise and Worship, featuring special music from our children and Praise Team
  • 10:30 p.m. Concert of Sacred Music
  • 11:00 p.m. Stories and Carols with Choir and Bells

Scripture: Luke 2:1-20

Message: Hark! The Herald Angels Sing