Message from Pastor

 From The Pastor…         

 

            It’s Advent!!

Advent, noun

  1. The arrival of a notable person, thing or event

Synonyms: arrival, appearance, emergence, materialization, occurrence, dawn, birth, rise, development

 

  1. The first season of the church year, leading up to Christmas and including the four preceding Sundays.

 

A time of celebration! A season when we remind ourselves of the Hope, Peace, Love and Joy returned to God’s people with the birth of the spotless lamb who would later be sacrificed, on our behalf, forever destroying the separation of God from His people.

It is a time when we gather with family and friends, exchange gifts and eat delicious dishes, many of which we only see at this time of year. I remember days in the kitchen with mom, baking pies and cookies and building a ginger bread house. As a kid, it was always an exciting time, and it still is! However, added to the excitement as an adult I see more clearly the depth and width and breadth of the love of God and Jesus woven into the season. I also see around me people in need - in need of sustenance, in need of hope, in need of the love of Christ that I did not notice as a child.

As we celebrate this season of Joy let us not forget the mission of Christ with which we have been charged, to serve others as Christ served us and to do all in our power to tell the story of Jesus as we make disciples in His name.

Connie and I would like to take a moment to THANK all of our family in Newark Valley for all the love shown during Pastor Appreciation Month. We are truly grateful that God has blessed us with YOUR presence in our lives and we thank Him every day as we pray for each of you. Thank YOU!

As we move into the Advent season I want to take a look back at the year quickly drawing to a close. We have much to celebrate this year. We have added to our number with 3 baptized, 2 transfers and 6 confirmed. We have completed some major repairs to the facilities in spite of a very tight budget. We are seeing new faces that are becoming regular faces. We have just celebrated a “face lift” of our facilities as we completed repairs on our roof, completely revamped the landscaping and added a “Little Free Library” in memory of Ann Miner. We have repaired many holes in the parking area, repainted the parsonage porches and garage and upgraded the video screens in both adult Sunday school rooms. We have also installed new computers in the worship area and the office. We have sent 5 Flood Buckets and 30 health Kits to the Conference Office for Disaster Relief.

The awesome response to the mission of Christ offered on Consecration Sunday indicates we will begin 2019 with pledges totaling $16,000 more than 2018. Our average attendance is on an upward trend! We have seen growth in many areas. Let’s keep the vision alive and growing as we hold tight to the Vision of Believe, Become, Belong & Build!! WOW!! God is good!! All the time!! I cannot wait to see what God has planned for the coming year!!

     “Go Sing It On The Mountain” Cantata practice continues, join the choir and the fun and, for sure, mark the date Dec. 9th and invite, invite, invite! Never miss an opportunity to show someone the love of Jesus. Also, I am sure Jewel, Linda and the team will be looking for help with volunteers as ushers and greeters, cookie bakers and more. If you can help in this ministry, let them know.

     Even MORE important, On Dec. 2nd we will welcome 6 new confirmands as members of our family!! BE SURE you make this an extra special day for them, support them and show them how much you love them by being present to celebrate this milestone in their lives and in the life of God’s church in Newark Valley!!

     Holiday Magic is slated for Dec. 8th, Christmas Toy Shop is to be held Dec. 22nd. Both of these are opportunities for service and sharing Christ’s message in our community. Kathy Bastow is leading the soup booth at Holiday Magic; Debbie Berghorn is coordinating Christmas Toy Shop. They can both use YOUR help in many ways. How is God leading you to serve?

     Our annual Christmas Eve service will be on Dec. 24th at 6pm. The worship team is planning something unique this year. Make plans to celebrate the birth of our Savior with us. As always, this is THE prime opportunity to share Jesus with everyone. Maybe this is your opportunity to “pack a pew”?

     From Connie and I: MERRY CHRISTMAS!!! We are thankful for our family in Newark Valley. We pray for you all daily and are excited for another year of service to our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ with you. May God richly bless each of you and our ministry together in the coming year!

 

May God bless you – Merry Christmas!!

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And, as always …….Get F.R.O.G.y!!

In Christ,

Tim