Gloria joins me in extending warm and sincere best wishes to you and yours at this very special season. Christmas is a time when the attention of our culture is drawn to the birth of the Christ child. Even amidst the commercialization and the parties, I believe there is an undercurrent of awareness that this is more than just another holiday. The politically correct folk who attempt to replace Merry Christmas with Happy Holidays can’t seem to stamp out the deeply embedded belief that this is a celebration of the birth of history’s redeemer child. Merry Christmas!
Look who preached at Maple Ridge on Christmas Sunday! While Nick has received word that he must undergo a second transplant, he is home and was able to preach yesterday. When he, Beth and the girls arrived on the Ridge from Halifax, the parsonage was cleaned and decorated for Christmas. What a church. Keep praying.
- Fredericton Crosspoint recently focused on serving their city and raised $30,500 and gave 837 hours of service to others – well done!
- West Head had 135 at their annual Fishermen’s Service and 150+ at their Sunday School Christmas Concert. Thanks to Richard MacAdams who has supplied the pulpit there until Pastor Doug Tatton takes over leadership of the church the end of this month. I plan to be there to install Doug on Jan 3rd.
- Head of Millstream had 60 at their Christmas Banquet – an excellent turn out for this small rural church.
- We were in church yesterday at Moncton – our first Sunday in our home church for some time. Great crowd; communion; 3 baptisms including an RCMP officer who took one hour off from his shift to be baptized; 6 or 7 stood to make commitments to Christ and a special Christmas offering was received.
- Hammonds Plains Cornerstone raised over $8000 to cap 4 springs in the Democratic Republic of Congo in partnership with World Hope Canada.
Last week Wood’s Harbour held their Annual Christmas Banquet with 200 in attendance. Among those in attendance was a Buddist from Sri Lanka, an exchange student from Germany, a local resident originally from Lebanon and three from the refugee family the community is sponsoring who arrived just a few days previously from a refugee camp in Kenya. All of these specialguests shared “Merry “Christmas” in their respective languages. To quote Pastor Rod Guptill “a great night of connecting.”
What has been the annual Snowbirds Breakfast for the past dozen or more years will not be held this year. The breakfast has always been held in conjunction with the winter DS meeting that has historically been held in central Florida. There will be no DS meeting in Florida this January and, as a result, I will not be in Florida in January. Thanks to all who have supported this event so well for so long. More word later.
THOT: “Be strong, but not rude. Be kind, but not weak. Be bold but don’t bully. Be humble, but not timid. Be confident, but not arrogant. ” – Nicky Gumbel
ON SECOND THOT: “However grave our sin, God responds with total forgiveness.” – Pope Francis
FOLLOW 2015, the International Wesleyan Youth Conference, will be held in Indianapolis, IN on December 28-31. If you want to know more information about FOLLOW 2015 please visit www.follow2015.com.