News and Announcements for the Week of December 21

Advent is a season of four weeks including four Sundays that prepare us for Christmas.  Advent derives from the Latin adventus, which means “coming.” The season proclaims the comings of the Christ — whose birth we prepare to celebrate once again, who comes continually in Word and Spirit, and whose return in final victory we anticipate. The Advent wreath is a simple circle of evergreen branches, a sign of life without end; its four Advent candles encircle a central white Christ candle.

Thanks to all who have contributed to our capital campaign The Door Beyond! We have received about $20,000 in First Fruit offerings, and have about $90,000 in pledges. We are asking that everyone in the congregation give first to our Church Ministry Budget to honor the Biblical expectation of the tithe (10% of your income) and generosity. Giving to The Door Beyond capital campaign should be over and above your giving toward your tithe.  This capital campaign invites us to honor God with a deeper level of generous and sacrificial giving. We do not expect equal amounts of giving from each person, but do invite everyone to equal sacrifice. If you have not done so already, you are invited during our Offering to give your commitment cards for the Church Ministry Budget stewardship campaign and for the Door Beyond capital campaign and give your First Fruits offering. Please pray for our congregation as we seek to honor God with our ministries.

Christmas Eve Worship Celebration is at 7:00 pm on Dec. 24 in our Sanctuary. In addition to your family, we hope you will bring a friend. Please pray about who God would place on your heart to invite, perhaps someone who has never met Jesus and simply needs your invitation to “Come and see.”

Recognizing the incredible gift that God has given to us in Jesus, and that it is Jesus’ birthday we celebrate, we invite you to share a Christmas gift to Jesus at our Christmas Eve Service by contributing to our Benevolence Fund, which serves people in crisis in our community by assisting with utilities, rent, food and other basic needs.

The Children’s Christmas Program will be held today, Sunday, December 21 at 6:00 PM in the Wesley Center.  Refreshments will follow.  Please bring your favorite finger food and support our children.

There will be NO choir rehearsal on December 24 and December 31, 2014.

All 2014 donations must be received by mail or delivered to the office prior to December 29. If received after that time, it will be posted as a 2015 receipt and will not show on your 2014 giving record. This will not preclude you from deducting it as a charitable contribution in 2014. You will just not have a receipt for the donation. If you wish to contribute early toward your 2015 pledge, please mark your donation clearly as 2015. Any donation for your 2015 pledge received prior to January 1, 2015, will be deposited and posted to 2014 and will appear on your 2014 giving record for tax purposes.

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