December 21, 2015 - “I will remember the wonders of old….” Psalms 77:11

My brother Joe and I talked on the phone from 9:00 P.M. to 12:05 A.M.(!) this morning. Our conversation was mostly about the memories of our childhood Christmases. After cutting a pine tree (one year a holly), we made our ornaments from Crayola-colored rings stuck together with water and flour glue. None of us ever saw or ate an apple, an orange or an English walnut until Christmas every year.

On Christmas Eve, we lay whispering in bed till daylight. When Mother and Daddy called us, we ran to the fireplace, warmed and opened our presents. A cap pistol with several rolls of caps was for many years our Christmas toy and we each got an apple and an orange. I was so proud of my English walnuts one year that I hid one on a window ledge and enjoyed it several weeks later.

Even thinking about the smell of fruit, fresh pine needles and smoking cap pistols can still bring tears to my eyes. We were unbelievably happy with so little and were truly a rich poor family. And even though those days are forever past, time hasn’t destroyed the happiness of them.
The memories live on.

December 21, 2015 - You're invited to join us Thursday, December 24 at Shelbyville United Methodist Church for our Candlelight Christmas Eve Worship beginning at 6:00pm. Our scripture focus will be Isaiah 9:2-7 and Luke 2:1-20 and the message is "Light in the Night."

December 19, 2015 - Jackson Baptist Church presents Christmas Musical "Christ Is The Beginning Of Christmas" Sunday, December 20th, at 6pm

 

December 19, 2015 - Rose of Sharon a Christmas Play presented by Joaquin First United Methodist Church will be Saturday and Sunday, December 19th and 20th starting at 6pm nightly. Everyone is invited. Refreshments including Christmas Cookies will be served after the play. Bring a friend and celebrate Christmas with us.

December 17, 2015 - Clara Murphy's Christmas Piano Recital was held at First Baptist Church San Augustine on December 15, 2015. Performing in the recital were (Photo from left, back row) LeAndra Wilson, Hannah Fountain, Rebecca Bullock, Cesily Hilton, Mason McGowan, Peyton Stephens, Zach Bennett (middle row) Sayde Miller, Raven Jenkins, Jalyn Mosley, Clara Murphy - teacher, (front row) Zoe McKinney, Lake Blackwell, Justine Magdalene Chavez, Bethany Dorsey, and Kailey Sowell.

December 14, 2015 - Annual Christmas Musical "Sounds Of The Season" will be held Sunday, December 20th at 4p.m. Join us as we celebrate the birth of our Saviour in song and dance, with bells and puppets. "For unto us a child is born, unto us a Son is given". Pastor Robert Gipson.

December 14, 2015 - Triumph the Church & Kingdom of God in Christ of Strong cordially invites all soloists, duos, choirs, & praise teams to our “The Joy of Christmas” Holiday Celebration. The theme will be Celebrating the Reason for the Season through Praise and Worship. This Holiday Celebration will take place on Saturday, December 19, 2015 at 6p.m.

For more information, please call Elder Faye D. Allen at 936-368-2611 or 936-572-5810 or Sis. Sylvia Hubbard @ 936-332-4280.

December 14, 2015 - Sunday was the 3rd Sunday in Advent. All four lessons today speak of hope. Often as in our Old Testament reading from Zephaniah, this hope is built on pain. Zephaniah is very critical of those in power in ancient Israel and Judah . But as you move into the 3rd and last chapter, Zephaniah says to “Sing!” What is there to sing about? God is present and living with his people. He will not forget them. In our Epistle Lesson from Philippians, Paul is telling the people that they should celebrate God all day—every day. Instead of worrying, replace those worrying words with prayers. When we look at Paul’s life, we see that whether he is among friends or in prison, he is living in the Kingdom of God . The great theologian, Frederick Buechner, says that the Kingdom is not so much a place as it a condition—a condition of the heart and soul.

What a blustery, raining Sunday. Our crowd was slim this morning, but despite the weather outside we inside enjoyed our time together. It always amazes me that no matter where in the Bible our Sunday School lesson comes from, it ties to many ideas in the scriptures and sermon. Fannie did a great job with what is a difficult passage for us modern people to understand. Our main scripture came from Leviticus and dealt with what is a proper sacrifice.

Last week Ms. Hilda and Pastor Matt Cecil and others brought song and fellowship at Green Acres. Later in the week Hilda, Ollie, and I visited with the folks at Lakeside Assisted Living. We sang songs and told some stories and had a nice visit. This Tuesday we are heading to Holiday Nursing Center.

Our Christmas Program was really fun. We had a nice crowd, and we sang many of our favorite Christmas hymns and carols. It really is a community celebration, and it is always great to be with each other during this special time of year. The food was really good too!

During the month of December we are collecting cans and boxes of soup for Christian Services. On Monday, December 14th at 9:00 AM, volunteers will meet at Joaquin Methodist Fellowship Hall to begin sorting and putting into family boxes cans and nonperishable goods. On Monday afternoon and all day Tuesday, volunteers will wrap gifts for the children. Then on Friday, December 18th starting at 9:00, perishable goods will be sorted and family-sized boxes, bags, and gifts will be given out. Come help if you’re able—all are welcome, and everyone will receive a blessing.

“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!

December 7, 2015 - Sunday was the 2nd Sunday in Advent. The Old Testament Lesson was from Malachi. In the third chapter God says, “Look! I am sending my messenger on ahead to clear the way for me.” The name Malachi means messenger. If we look at the Hebrew Scriptures and assign a theme, it would be “covenant making and covenant breaking.” For the Jewish people there is hope in Malachi’s words even though they were often about covenant breaking. We of the Christian faith read those words and think of John the Baptizer and Jesus. In the translation of the Bible called The Message, our Gospel Lesson has John the Baptizer say, “Everyone will be there to see the parade of God’s salvation and transformation.”

We celebrated Holy Communion on Sunday. In our church’s tradition all who love God and seek to live in peace with one another are welcome to the table. Our attendance was in double digits, which always brings smiles to our faces. Joe and Hilda worked together to bring our music this morning, and we sounded quite lively. Ms. Fannie had a really good Sunday School lesson. This quarter begins in Exodus; today’s lesson was about the Sabbath and keeping it holy.

Our Paxton Community Christmas program and dinner is this Tuesday at 6:00. When I came Saturday to collect the rice and beans that our church collected for Christian Services, the tree was up and decorated and tables covered in tablecloths.

Sue and I have been in Dallas . Our daughter bought a new house that needs renovation, like what you see on HGTV. It rained as we went to Dallas , but the last few days have been beautiful. We have my daughter’s dog staying with us; like our hound dog, she loves going to the park. She is so full of energy that our older dog and cat don’t know what to make of her. We call her the Wild Child.

Monday, December 7th is Pearl Harbor Day, which many remember or have been told about. Monday at 3:30 volunteers will be at Green Acres to sing Christmas carols. This Thursday at 2:00 PM volunteers will meet at Lakeside Assisted Living for song and fellowship. I imagine we will sing many Christmas carols there also. On Tuesday December 15th at 2:00 we will meet at Holiday Nursing Center for a similar program. We really appreciate all who help with these ministries.

During the month of December we are collecting cans and boxes of soup for Christian Services. On Monday, December 14th at 9:00 AM, volunteers will meet at Joaquin Methodist Fellowship Hall to begin sorting and putting into family boxes cans and nonperishable goods. On Monday afternoon and all day Tuesday, volunteers will wrap gifts for the children. Then on Friday, December 18th starting at 9:00, perishable goods will be sorted and family-sized boxes, bags, and gifts will be given out. Come help if you’re able—all are welcome, and everyone will receive a blessing.

“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!

December 10, 2015 - This singing group, Paul’s Journey, often described as “Entertaining, uplifting, and ministry-minded” will present a free concert at Toledo Bend Baptist Church in Huxley on Friday, December18th, at 7:00 PM.

Paul’s Journey, a Chapel Valley Music Recording Artist on the "Inspire" label, is an award-winning group based in Houston, TX. The ministry of Paul’s Journey is in its 38th year now, and they have garnered many Top 40 Radio hits and earned many awards down through the years such as the 2007 “SGM FanFair Group of the Year”.

In 2012 Paul's Journey was nominated for "Horizon Group Of The Year" and in 2013, 2014 and 2015 the group was chosen by Southern Gospel Music fans as one of the “Top 5 New Traditional Quartets” in the country. Throughout time, this powerhouse group has quickly become known for their unique style and blend. The group travels some 200 dates per year all across the USA and abroad.

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