Getting Ready for Advent and Christmas

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And the Word became flesh and lived among us …

This Sunday we enter Advent, that time of preparation leading us to the Christmas season. After a couple of weeks off, Pastor Chuck is back with a series:

What Has God Wrought?

Nov. 27: Isaiah 2:1-5. “A Universal Work”
Dec. 4: Isaiah 11:1-10. “An Ancient Work”
Dec. 11: Isaiah 35:1-10. “A Work Within Us”
Dec. 18: Isaiah 7:10-16. “A Strange Work”
Saturday, Dec. 24 (Christmas Eve): Luke 2:1-20. “The Beauty of His Work”
Sunday, Dec. 25 (Christmas Day): Hebrews 1:1-13. “The Glory of His Work”

End of Year Plans

The following is Pastor Chuck’s article for the November newsletter.


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What it’s all about …

Where has the year gone? Here we are, finalizing plans for Christmas and, broadly, plans for 2017.

You may not have looked at your calendar yet. Christmas Eve and Christmas Day fall on Saturday and Sunday this year! We will have our usual Christmas Eve service, and we of course will also have a memorable opportunity to attend church on Christmas Day, celebrating the birth of the messiah we worship.

That said, I also know how the occasional Sunday Christmas can mess with people’s family traditions. I bring the fact of a Sunday Christmas up now so you can plan and adjust accordingly. If you’re going to be in the Ten Mile area Christmas Day, consider making 11 a.m. to noon in worship part of your morning schedule. (We will have just one service Christmas Day.)

If you have children or grandchildren, consider the memory you’ll be making: The Christmas morning that included a trip to a church full of light, decorations, ancient stories and hope. Sunday Christmases are kind of rare. The last one was in 2011, and the next one will be in 2022, followed by 2033. How old will the children in your lives be by then?

If you’re traveling, go ahead and investigate what church might be near you and active Christmas Day. If the people you are visiting are not in church regularly, you will have a great opportunity to remind them of the joy of Christ.

Just practice these words: “It’s such a special Christmas. I really want to go to church.”

* * *

As for 2017, we will have new leaders, of course. Under our church’s leadership structure, at least four lay members of our 12-member Church Leadership Council roll off each year and cannot go back on the CLC for at least a year.

We will approve the 2017 CLC at charge conference, scheduled for 2 p.m. Nov. 13 at Kingston UMC. (Several churches will meet with the district superintendent at once to hold their charge conferences, where matters like leadership and pastor’s compensation are approved for the coming year.) The four new members were initially selected by what is called the lay leadership team, a small committee I chair, and reviewed by the current CLC before being forwarded to the charge conference for Nov. 13 approval. If approved, here’s what your 2017 CLC will look like:

Serving through Dec. 31, 2017
Bob Monk (CLC Chair)
Preston Woody (HR Subteam Chair)
Susan Garrott
Cathy Turner (Lay Member to Annual Conference)

Serving through Dec. 31, 2018
John Tindall (Lay Leader)
Shelly Jones
Sherri Burnette (Trustees Chair)
Denise VanNorman

Serving through Dec. 31, 2019
Sandra White (Finance Chair)
Bill Hughes
Mike Beard
Missy Richardson

Obviously, the 2019 class represents the new people coming on the CLC. These folks also will each serve on at least one leadership team handling details of human resources, finances, trustees (facilities) or lay leadership. These teams make recommendations to the full CLC, but all final decisions are made by the larger body.

Be aware, all church members are welcome to attend and have voice at the Nov. 13 charge conference, just as you are all welcome to attend CLC meetings. The voting members of charge conference will be the 2016 CLC members, plus the pastor, with the district superintendent presiding.