February 9, 2016 - St. Therese Catholic Church announces Ash Wednesday schedule.

February 10:
7am - St. Therese, Center, Ashes only
9am - St. Mary of Epiphany, Timpson, English Mass and Ashes
6pm - St. Mary of Tpiphany, Timpson, Spanish Mass and Ashes
8pm - St. Therese, Center, Bilingual Mass and Ashes

The sacrament of reconciliation will be held on Thursday, February 11th at 6pm at St. Therese in Center. Several priests will hear your confessions. Everyone is encouraged to take advantage of this God given sacrament.

For any questions, please contact Jennifer Wulf at 936-598-6333.

February 9, 2016 - The monthly Community Men's Breakfast will be held Saturday, February 13th, at 8am at Joaquin United Methodist Church. This is a great opportunity for the men in Joaquin and the surrounding area to fellowship with one another.

Evangelist George ParsleyFebruary 8, 2016 - People have a whole host of ideas today as to why people should be baptized. For example some teach that baptism is necessary in order to enter some denominations. Others teach that little children need to be baptized to save them from their sins. And yet others say that one needs to be baptized to show that they are saved.

But the question remains, why were people baptized in the New Testament? When we go to our New Testaments we find a stark contrast between the teachings of men and the truth of God. 

Notice this at Jesus' baptism, “Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan unto John, to be baptized of him. 14 But John forbad him, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me? 15 And Jesus answering said unto him, Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness. Then he suffered him” (Matt. 3:13-15). Notice three important things in this text; 1) Jesus came to be baptized. 2) John expressed his need to be baptized. 3) Jesus said it fulfilled all righteousness. Can we gather out of this text that baptism was optional or a secondary thing?

Also consider something else the New Testament says about baptism. “And all the people that heard him, and the publicans, justified God, being baptized with the baptism of John. 30 But the Pharisees and lawyers rejected the counsel of God against themselves, being not baptized of him” (Lk. 7:29-30). You see baptism is the counsel of God and when we reject baptism then we are rejecting the counsel of God.

But the question still remains, why were people baptized in the New Testament? Well, the New Testament says:
1. To be saved (Mk. 16:16).
2. To be born again (Jn. 3:3-5).
3. For the remission of sins (Ac. 2:38).
4. To wash away sins (Ac. 22:16).
5. To justify God (Lk. 7:29).
6. To be spiritually circumcised by faith (Col. 2:11-13).
7. To crucify the old man and have a new life (Rm. 6:3-6).
8. To put on Christ (Gal. 3:27).

These reasons are right from the Bible which makes them the truth. No one was baptized because they were saved but to be saved. No one was baptized because they had a new life but in order to get a new life. No one was baptized because they were washed from sin but to be washed from sin. No one was baptized because they already had Christ but in order to get Christ. No one was baptized because they had crucified the old man but in order to crucify the old man.

Church email: northsidecoccenter@gmail.com

If you would like to receive our weekly bulletin via email, simply email us your request and we will gladly put you on the list!

Judges 16: 28, “Oh, God, strengthen me…please…
February 8, 2016 - My brother John has a 73 year elderly Mexican National helping him at his chicken farm at Huxley, Texas.  Since Juan can’t speak English, he phones John when there’s a problem at the farm and simply says, “Please”.  That’s my brother’s way of knowing he’s needed and within a few minutes, he drives the three mile trip to the farm.  

My parents often reminded us ten children to use this word.  When leaving the dinner table, we were to say, “May I be excused, please”.  If we wanted another biscuit, we asked, “Pass the biscuits, please”.   It would’ve been as foolish for us to omit “please” as it would be to answer them with “yeah” or “naw”.

Many of the younger generation were never taught the magic of this word. The reason is simple: “Please” is akin to humility, gentleness and calmness, (Webster), virtues they were never taught to appreciate.

Juan gets John’s help the same way I got it from Mother and Daddy.  And I’ve learned from experience and the Word that the Lord helps his children, too, when they humbly pray, “Please, dear Father…..please...”  

February 8, 2016 - Carroll Chapel CME Church in Shelbyville, will be having their annual Black History Program on February 21st at 3:00 PM. Guest speaker will be Rev. Alvin Brinson of the East Hamilton Baptist Church in Shelbyville. Everyone is invited to come out and help us celebrate this glorious occasion. 

February 7, 2016 - This week was Transfiguration Sunday.  The Gospel Lesson from Luke 9: 28-36 tells when Jesus, Peter, John, and James go to the mountain top.  There Jesus is transformed by “flashed lightning.”  Elijah, who represents the prophets, and Moses, who represents the law, are also there, talking to Jesus.  From the clouds a voice proclaims Jesus as the Chosen One.

My sermon didn’t speak of the transfiguration.  Instead, the scripture came from Jesus’ favorite book in the Jewish Testament—Isaiah.  In Chapter 58: 11-12, the prophet promises the people that out of ruin the foundation from old will restore them.  We are promised that the Lord will guide and provide for us.

In my sermon I questioned how successful we are in living the life Christ wants us to live.  Jesus wasn’t about building churches but transforming lives.  In the liturgy for Holy Communion, I quoted the Catholic mystic of old, Teresa of Avila.  She reminded Christians that Christ has no body but ours.  We are the hands, feet, and eyes of the Christ.  That is an awesome responsibility. 

It was so great to see everyone this morning.  Fannie had a great Sunday school lesson as always; in our discussion we realized how important it is for each generation to pass on our faith and our values.  Mr. Fiedler ably led our singing this morning, but we sure missed Hilda on the piano.  We also remembered Ms. Gloria, who has a birthday this week.  We sang Happy Birthday long distance. 

Sue and I were very appreciative of all the prayers and love that we felt this week.  My mother died Monday, so our week was spent in Dallas getting arrangements done and people notified.  Sue and I were uplifted by thoughts and prayers, not just from our church but from so many in our community.  It was great to see many relatives that flew in for the services and friends who journeyed from Joaquin.  The funeral service was officiated by my mother’s pastor, Cheryl Walenta Gorvie, who did a wonderful job.  We chose music meaningful to my mom, including Forties tunes, music composed and played by our Aunt Barbara, and the hymns “Morning Has Broken” and “Lord of the Dance.”  The weather was perfect, especially for February.

On Monday I had my yearly interview with our District Superintendent, Rev. Huffman.  In his kindness, he conducted this interview over the phone.  Rev. Huffman is not only a great District Superintendent, he is a good friend.  I expressed my desire to continue serving Paxton as its pastor. 

 “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!

Shelbyville UMC and Short UMC invite all people to join us in celebrating and participating in the season of Lent beginning with Ash Wednesday. 

"Lent, the period of 40 days before Easter (excluding Sundays), begins on Ash Wednesday and ends at sundown on Holy Saturday, the evening before Easter. During Lent, we enter into a season of preparation, self-reflection and repentance when we seek to literally  turn aroundd and realign our lives and focus toward God. It is a time to give up things as well as take on new life-giving practices, helping us rid ourselves of distractions and our own selfish desires. By doing so, we seek to live and love as more faithful disciples of Jesus Christ." 

Here are the worship opportunities and other ways you can participate with us this year:

Ash Wednesday: Wednesday, February 10 Imposition of the Ashes 6:00am. We will also be holding a 6:00pm worship at Shelbyville UMC with imposition of the ashes.

Wednesday Worship: During the season of Lent, we will be offering a Wednesday morning worship service with prayer and Holy Communion. This is a great way to start the day, and have a mid-week spiritual recharge. Wednesdays February 100March 23 6:00am

Lent Bible Study:  John: Gospel of Life and Light
Tuesdays at 10:00am February 16 - March 22
The Gospel of John is the most deeply spiritual of the four gospels. It includes some of the loftiest and most loved verses in all the Bible: "And the Word became flesh...," "For God so loved the world...," "You who are without sin cast the first stone...," "I am the resurrection and the life...," "I am the way, and the truth, and the life." The writing is filled with rich images and profound truths, but John notes that his aim in writing the gospel is that his readers will not only believe in Jesus Christ, but that they "may have life in his name."
Book donation cost: $12

Shelby County Outreach Ministries 
Green Acres Nursing Home in Center Bible Study, Prayer, & Worship Wednesdays 10:00amm11:00am Hands On Mission Opportunities: Health Kits Gathering supplies and putting kits together Tuesday, March 22nd at 2:00pm. 

We will be offering a community mission project this Lent. Look for more information soon.

Join us for worship each Sunday!
9:00am - Short UMC
11:00am - Shelbyville UMC (live stream option at www.ShelbyvilleUMCWorship.weebly.com )

February 5, 2016 - Today we look at a portion of the life of the Apostle Paul (Philippians 3:4-11) and search for the time when he was of the greatest value to Christ. Paul wrote the book of Philippians to the church at Philippi when he was imprisoned in Rome by the ruler, Nero.

Paul's early life was one of preparation for the priesthood as a Pharisee, he sat at the foot of the high priest for years as he was prepared to be the high priest of the future. As a young man Paul became the greatest persecutor of Christians, those who were following this man called Jesus and proclaiming some new religion called "the way". 
It was only after a face-to-face meeting with the Lord on the road to Damascus that he was changed from the greatest persecutor of Christians to the greatest Apostle of all.
Paul tries to give us knowledge of the true worth of value to be found in man as he recounts in our text for today how he started life as a Jew, circumcised on the eighth day after his birth into the Jewish community. 

Coming from the tribe of Benjamin, "Hebrew of Hebrews", destined to be a Pharisee of the highest order. Being filled with zeal, persecuting the Christians according to the law of Moses as he had been taught.

His years as a young adult were totally spent working against Christ and His followers and only after he is older does he realize that he was forgiven for the evil he did to Christians due to his ignorance of the gospel. 

As Jesus said of the Roman soldiers as they nailed Him to the cross; "Father forgive them for they know not what they do". Paul understands how loving and forgiving Jesus really is by looking at his own life experiences. Once he is given salvation by the Lord he no longer counts worldly things as gain and he gladly gives up all that he has of this world for Christ, counting all that he had lost as rubbish as he suffered for Christ, these same things he once counted as gain.

He realizes that having the law of Moses, today we might say, "having religion", gave him no righteousness, but that only through his faith in Jesus Christ did he gain righteousness. 

Paul's greater value truly came once he devoted his life to the service of our Lord and Savior. He even stated in another of the Epistles written from prison, while sitting in chains, that he had learned to be comfortable in the Lord in all conditions.May we all strive for the same understanding, joy and value.

Please feel welcome to join us for our weekly Bible study on Wednesday evening at 6:00PM at Spring Hill Baptist Church. Call me at 936-615-1427 for more information.

May God bless you and keep you and make His face to shine upon you each day.

February 1, 2016 - Satan has done a wonderful job at deceiving millions upon millions of people that they can sin and live like the devil and still reap the rewards of heaven. This basic concept and principle is the teaching of the Nicolations, which believed that there was nothing anyone could do that would cause them to lose their soul. And Jesus hated their doctrine because it is not true (Rev. 2:6,15).

Concerning this teaching Jesus said, “So hast thou also them that hold the doctrine of the Nicolaitans, which thing I hate. 16 Repent; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will fight against them with the sword of my mouth” (Rev. 2:15-16).

The idea of the once saved always saved concept in its various forms is a teaching that Jesus hates. He hates it because it is not true and it goes against what He Himself taught. “I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish. ...5 I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish” (Lk. 13:3,5).

Men say sin and go to heaven, Jesus says repent or perish. Jesus when He started His ministry preached repentance (Mk. 1:15). Paul said of the man in Corinth that he needed to repent of his fornication (1 Cor. 5:5) and later did (2 Cor. 2:6-7). Some Christians needed to repent in Thyatira or suffer the consequences (Rev. 2:20-23). And Peter said that repentance plays a key role in eternal salvation (2 Pet. 3:9).

Paul said, “For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of: but the sorrow of the world worketh death” (2 Cor. 7:10). So you see, we can not live like the devil and be rewarded, nor can we hold the doctrine that teaches so. Both the conviction and the lifestyles are equally in need of repentance, or perish.

Church email: northsidecoccenter@gmail.com If you would like to receive our weekly bulletin via email, just send us your request and we will be happy to put you on the list!

January 31, 2016 - Sunday was the Fourth Sunday after the Epiphany.  The Epistle Lesson is St. Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians.  The 13th Chapter ends, “And now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; and the greatest of these is love.”  We know that sometimes before love can take hold there must be healing.  I relied on the book, The Gospel According to Harry Potter.  In the seven book series there are numerous Christian allegories.  By the end of the first book, Harry knows that the greatest thing in the world is love.  In our Christian faith we are told that God is Love.  That is a powerful idea. 

We were in double digits at Paxton Sunday morning.  It was so great to see Vera and we all hope she feels better each day.  Liz and Evie came this morning and we all remarked how big Evie is getting.  The church voted to give a scholarship to a very deserving young lady.  On Monday, we have our ministry at Green Acres Nursing Center.  I am also headed to Lufkin for the yearly meeting with the District Superintendant, Rev. Chuck Huffman.  It is hard to believe that Monday begins the second month of the New Year.  I guess we have to stop referring to 2016 as the New Year!  Next Sunday is Transfiguration Sunday and that means Lent is right around the corner.  Ash Wednesday is February 10th and the First Sunday in Lent is February 14th.  Of course the 14th is also Valentines Day. 

“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!