Happy New Year!
What a blessing to be able to have our Christmas Eve service; we weren’t so fortunate last year! What an inspiration to see people gathered in a circle in the darkened sanctuary with lit candles, singing carols in remembrance of that very special awesome “Silent Night” of long ago. Thanks to Veva Larson and the choir, Marilyn Hackett, Jim Johnson, and the confirmation youth for their part in the service.
This week I invite you to pray for the men and women serving in the Armed Services, Ilene Parkhill who at last report was still in the hospital with pneumonia, Mark Martens who is experiencing serious back problems, the Rilma Hummel family for her loss, and Richard Shanno who is finally home after a week in the hospital with breathing problems.
Children’s Sunday School will continue to meet at 9:00 a.m. In January and February the adult class will meet with Merlin Jones and the confirmation youth with Rev. Textor after worship.
Are you on the church officer’s list? If so, reserve from noon to 3:00 p.m. on Sunday January 23 for our special program planning session.
For this Sunday (2nd)
• Scripture: Matthew 2:1-12
• Sermon Title: Journey in Expectation
1. Why did the wise men take their long journey?
2. Why did they stop in Jerusalem and consult Herod?
3. How did the Jewish “experts” react to the information they found out about Bethlehem being
the birthplace of the Messiah?
4. Can indifference lead us to take our faith for granted?
5. Did the wise men, who were Gentiles, find what they were looking for?
6. This Sunday is Communion Sunday. How might you approach this Sacrament in expectation?
LOVE & JOY
Ilene is now out of the hospital and staying at her son's house due to flu at her daughter's.
Season’s greetings everyone!
On the 19th I turned a year older. So far I don’t feel it! Thanks for your greetings, gifts, cards, prayers and best wishes; also for singing Happy Birthday to me during our Sharing of Joys.
If you didn’t make it to our Sunday School Christmas program, you missed out on some good singing and a meaningful message. You also missed out on kids being kids-- several struggles for control of microphones a tearfully reluctant Mary; a wandering wise man and another with his crown stuck over his ears, an angel crawling under the Communion rail, etc. I’m really sorry you had to miss out.
Our Christmas Eve Candle Light worship service begins at 10:00 p.m. Friday. Hopefully the snowy weather will be over before that. Thanks to everyone who will be helping make this an inspirational and meaningful occasion.
Sunday we’ll be singing a number of Christmas carols (pp. 217-254 in our hymnbook). Be ready to choose your favorites.
This week be sure to offer up prayers for our members or friends serving in the military; especially those who will not be able to celebrate Christmas or the New Year with family.
For this Sunday (26th)
• Scripture: Matthew 2:13-23
• Sermon Title: Holy Refugees
1. What events surrounding your celebration of Christmas will likely be less than perfect?
2. What events surrounding the birth of Jesus were less than picture-perfect?
3. How did Herod react to the news that a new king was to be born? Does that kind of behavior
happen in our time?
4. What part did “divine intervention” play in this scripture passage?
God is with us—let’s celebrate!
LOVE & JOY
Not much to report this week
This week be sure to offer up prayers for our members or friends who are homebound or in nursing homes or living in assisted living.
For this Sunday (19th)
1. Before they were married Joseph found out that Mary was pregnant—but not by him! What
led him to go ahead and marry her?
2. Why was the child to be called Jesus?
3. What does Emmanuel/Immanuel mean?
Blessings on you!
LOVE & JOY
It’s me again…
Don’t forget our movie night this Saturday at 6:30 p.m. We’re showing a movie for the young at heart—“The Santa Claus” with Tim Allen. This is an occasion for all age groups so come and bring guests with you. The movie is free, and there will be cookies and drinks available at intermission for a free will offering.
Our Sunday School Christmas program will be during worship the 19th. The Christmas Eve Service is Friday the 24th at 10:00 p.m.
Please pray for Ilene Parkhill who has gone to stay with her daughter in Virginia for the duration of her chemo treatments. Her address will be in this Sunday’s bulletin. Also keep in mind Shirley Frizzell. Her knee replacement is doing well, but she has had a prolonged stay in the hospital to get her potassium level back on an even keel. In addition, several families who have lost loved ones recently can use your prayers and words of support.
For this Sunday (12th)
• Scripture: Isaiah 35:1-10
• Scripture: Matthew 11:2-6
• Sermon Title: Signs of the Kingdom
1. This is the third Sunday of Advent; the theme is joy. Where do you see joy reflected in our scripture passages?
2. What words and phrases in these two scriptures are similar?
3. Why do you think John the Baptist might have been wondering if Jesus was really the Messiah?
4. How did Jesus respond to John’s question?
5. The sermon has to do with signs of the kingdom. Where do you find signs of the presence of God’s kingdom in our time and in our midst?
May you be blessed as you wait and prepare to celebrate the birth of Jesus and at the same time live in anticipation of his glorious appearance and final triumph.
LOVE & JOY
Hope Thanksgiving was a great time for you and that you didn’t spoil it by getting trampled during the Black Friday shopping frenzy!
In addition to other prayer concerns, be sure to add to your list Ilene Parkhill who began chemo treatments this week.
The chili supper-nativity set display was a fun fellowship event. The chili was excellent and Anita McMartin was the pleased winner of the nativity set offered as a door prize. You can read more about the event in future bulletins or newsletters.
Keep these three December events in mind – 1) movie night featuring “The Santa Claus” at 6:30 p.m. on Saturday December 11, 2) Christmas program during worship December 19; and 3) Christmas Eve Service Friday the 24th at 10:00 p.m.
For this Sunday (5th)
• Scripture: Isaiah 11:1-10
• Sermon Title: The Jesse Tree
1. This week I’ll be referring to the Jesse tree. If you can’t make it to worship and don’t know what a Jesse tree is try to Google it. Let me know what you find.
2. How was Jesse related to King David?
3. Why is the royal line of King David important to Christians?
4. What is Isaiah’s vision of God’s kingdom; how does he describe the ruler of this kingdom?
5. What part did trees or wood products play in Jesus’ life and death?
LOVE & JOY