Happenings at Paxton United Methodist Church, Feb 29th

February 29, 2016 - Sunday was the Third Sunday in Lent.  This special time of reflection and inward looking is coming to an end.  May we use the remaining time to further understand His word.  The last week of Jesus’ life is referred to as Holy Week.  So much is packed into that week that I plan to preach several sermons on that fateful time.  The Gospel writers spend a great deal of their time looking at the events of this one week.  My scriptures for the next several Sundays will come from the oldest of the four Gospels, Mark.  Mark has the best chronology—not just the days but sometimes even the hours. 

This week began with Jesus’ triumphant entry into Jerusalem.  His followers and onlookers cheered and laid their cloaks and palm branches in front of Jesus.  Jesus heard the cries and saw the hopeful looks in people’s eyes as they wondered:  Could Jesus be the one?  Also entering Jerusalem that day in front of a large army was the governor, Pontius Pilate.  He always left his seaside villa to be on hand if trouble broke out during Passover.  Having to be away from the sea and in the dusty streets of Jerusalem, Pilate started the week already in a bad mood!           

We had a small crowd this Sunday.  As usual Fannie put together a great Sunday school lesson.  I always notice the similarities between our study in Sunday school and the scriptures for worship.  We will start a new quarter in our studies, so we got new books, which include some of my favorites from the Old Testament.  Joe and Hilda teamed up for our music this morning, and we sounded pretty good on some old standards.  

Sue and I delivered the food that our church has collected this month—rice and beans—to the Community Christian Services.   In March we will be collecting cans of chili.  Next Sunday will be Holy Communion.  This sacrament is so important to the life of the church but is especially important in these days before Easter.  Fannie announced that the Watsons will host Easter Sunrise Service.  Fannie said she thinks this will be the 29th Sunrise Service that they have held at the Watson homeplace.  Everyone is invited: I know we will enjoy the time of worship and song—and of course the breakfast afterwards!

 Last Thursday we went to Lakeside Assisted Living.  We had so many volunteers, and the residents filled the living room.  Some of the staff joined us too; Sue and I were so pleased to see one of our favorite former students, Sandra McDaniel Harper.  Ollie and Fannie had poignant stories to share, and Pastor Matt brought a short message.  Gene sang a few specials, and Maggie and I tried to keep the music and program going.  Judging by the spirited nature of it, I think we did a good job!  Nora told a story with props and also sang a song.  With Nora singing on the group songs and Hilda and Sylvia playing the piano, we sounded better than we had a right to! 

“Whoever you are, in whatever faith you were born, whatever creed you profess; if you come to this house to find God you are welcome here.” Paxton United Methodist Church is an inviting church that takes to heart the idea of “Open Doors, Open Hearts, Open Minds.” Sunday School starts at 9:15 and Worship begins at 10:00. Our email address is paxtonumc@yahoo.com. If you would like the weekly email newsletter about Paxton Methodist you can send me your email address to the Paxton email address and I will add you to the list. God’s Speed!