Welcome to First United Methodist Church Winnsboro, where all people are welcome all the time!                   

Worship with us
In-Person or LIVE on Facebook!
 
Pastor Debbie has a ZOOM BIBLE TALK on WEDNESDAY MORNINGS at 10 AM … CLICK HERE to see the details on            BIBLE TALK
– Our calendar is also helpful for upcoming events
– Some Sunday School classes are paused temporarily but to find out about your options when we return, go HERE. 

 

NEED INFO ON COVID 19?

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CLICK HERE to go directly to the CDC website for current information on testing and symptoms.

– Please continue to PRAY, PRAY, PRAY that we can stop the spread of the COVID-19 and eradicate this vicious virus!  

CLICK HERE to go to our FACEBOOK page for updates and to
watch past Sunday services and/or devotionals.
CLICK HERE to go to YouTube for
past Sunday services and/or devotionals.
 

Sunday Mornings

10:50 a.m.
 
CHILDREN’S CHURCH in the FAMILY LIFE CENTER
except on the 1st Sundays 
Kids in 1st-6th grades … CLICK HERE for details.
 
 

We’re easy to find in Winnsboro!

 

2-28-18 FUMC Updates

What an honor to be part of a team of clergy and lay leaders in our North Texas Conference who have the privilege of interviewing the future pastors of our church!  We interviewed 16 incredible candidates this week and I can’t tell you how inspiring it is to see the energy and ideas flowing into the United Methodist Church – VERY EXCITING!
 
Our worship series, EMPTINESS TRANSFORMED continues this week with a look at the EMPTY Heart at the Cross … I posted the audio of last week’s message today (click here) if you want to catch up, but please know that Easter is quickly approaching so be sure to get all the important dates on your calendar! Find all the Easter activities HERE.
 
LAST VISION MEETING THIS SUNDAY: March 4, NOON, Family Life Center
Thanks to all of you who have taken the survey (last chance is FRIDAY 3/2, click HERE) … this will be a working lunch to focus in our priorities for 2018 … please PRAY, PRAY, PRAY for discernment!! (And yes, there will be dessert!)
 
TEXT & ONLINE GIVING … have you tried it? (Click here): please try it and let me know what you think! 
          TEXT GIVING … it’s so easy!  Just text a $amount to 903-228-4944 (save this # under GIVING or something you’ll remember) … try it now, $10 minimum …it’s very easy and the set-up is simple and the 2nd time you text an offering there is no set-up at all and you can get immediate confirmations.
         ONLINE GIVING … what’s awesome about online giving is you can schedule recurring payments on the days of your choice. Again, the first time you set it up takes a few minutes 
 
PRAYER BLANKET MINISTRY … thanks to the Friendly Seeker’s class for their $100 donation to this new ministry!  6 families have been blessed by these beautiful prayer quilts and I anticipate many more WILL be in the future!
 
BREAD, BROTH & BIBLE STUDY ... questions attached for next week … we’re praying for better weather so we have a great, big fellowship celebration next week!  brother Henry’s questions are attached!
 
CHRISTMAS IN THE PARK: 
I want to thank Priscilla Massey for coordinating Christmas in the Park and I KNOW she will be missed as she leaves to answer God’s call to serve in the mission field!  Priscilla met Vickie Fogey from the Pine Street Baptist Church and she will assume the duties of Coordinator for Christmas in the Park and we are so happy and pleased that Christmas in the Park will continue as a wonderful event in Winnsboro as it has for the past 14 years! Janat Erwin has agreed to be the coordinator for OUR church and will work closely with Vickie on anything concerning our Church participation … we already have 13 tables reserved and the United Methodist Men will continue to do the lunch! Janat will get with the five different divisions in our church, UMM, crafters, quilters, bake goods & Rada, soon to answer any questions about more detailed table requirements or anything else those groups need.  Priscilla wants to thank everyone for their help and participation last year and she is confident that this year will be a huge success for our Church and for Christmas in the Park!
 
 
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jer. 29:11

Debbie Lyons, Pastor

First United Methodist Church Winnsboro
301 Church Street, Winnsboro, TX. 75494
CLICK HERE for our Facebook
CLICK HERE for our website
 
 
 

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2-7-18 FUMC Updates

I just love the seasons of the church calendar … there’s a sense of balance, of richness, in the liturgical rhythm of the change from one important season to another. This Sunday, THE TRANSFIGURATION is a pivotal moment in the calendar when we transition from the season after Christmas to the pre-Easter season of Lent.  I look forward to seeing you Sunday as we begin the journey toward the CROSS together!
 
WEDNESDAY NIGHT FELLOWSHIP DINNER … 5:45 pm
What a GREAT meal we had last week with so many people and so much energy! I always post the menu on the website calendar AND on Facebook when I know it so most of you know tonight is MEATLOAF-MASHED POTATOES-GREEN BEANS!  Bring a friend and come!
 
BREAD, BROTH and BIBLE STUDY … Wednesdays beginning 2/14, 5:45 pm
Speaking of transitions, with the Lent season approaching on Wednesday, February 14th, we are shifting our meals to that of a more SACRIFICIAL time of fellowship … the season of LENT is a solemn religious season that begins on Ash Wednesday and ends approximately six weeks later, before Easter Sunday. The purpose of Lent is the preparation for EASTER through prayer, penance/repentance of sins, acts of charity, and self-denial.  On Wednesday nights during Lent, I ask that you be ESPECIALLY generous with your love offering because we intend to keep the meals VERY simple, and very inexpensive to serve so we can observe a sacrificial meal AND give the proceeds to the Methodist Children’s Home in Waco.  Yes, this means NO DESSERT … this means that when we look at that empty dessert table with cravings for those yummy sweets, we remember the sacrifice Christ made for us!
 
ALL EASTER EVENTS ON THE WEBSITE!
 
ASH WEDNESDAY, February 14th, 6:45 pm in the SANCTUARY
This is absolutely one of the most sacred nights of the year and I hope you’ll make it a priority … we will gather in the sanctuary and remember that there has been NO GREATER LOVE than that we have been given through the death of our Savior, and we will remember our mortality by imposing ashes on our foreheads.
 
STARTING WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 21, 5:45 – 7:30 pm
We will have our lite fellowship meal, bread and soup, then at 6:30, Brother Henry will teach a Lenten Bible study … SEE ATTACHED outline so you can be prepared for the discussion. Each week we’ll send you the outline ahead of time so you can print it at home and do some preparation.
 
PARENTS:  Some special Lent programs for Kids
HIGH SCHOOL: starting 2/18, 9:45 am the High School kids will be hanging out with me in the FLC to talk about why Easter is MORE than just a day. Please encourage your HS kids to not only come, but to bring a friend.
YOUNGER KIDS: Carla plans a lesson for the younger kids after Wednesday night Fellowship Meals but starting 2/21, they TOO will be taking a closer look at this special season of Lent. I hope you will take turns to support our kids and “shadow” Carla and she teaches the Wednesday night kids.
 
WOMEN OF THE CHURCH: have you considered getting more involved? The United Methodist Women have their regular monthly meeting this Thursday at 10 am and YOU’RE INVITED to join them!! 
 
VISIONING CONTINUES … Monday, February 12th 6:30-8PM in FLC
Our last VISIONING MEETING is next Monday and we’ll be zeroing in on the 3 focus areas for 2018 … please be sure to take the survey that will be coming tomorrow … you will only have through SUNDAY to complete it so when you get it, click it right away!
 
SEE THE FULL CALENDAR HERE
 
Thanks to all of you on the prayer chain who are praying – it’s been a busy week and PRAYER MATTERS!  Please reply to this email if you want to be added to the text prayer chain.
– Pat Ragsdale in the Winnsboro Hospital
– Bonnie Crosby in the Winnsboro Hospital
– Dr. Dela Cruz is home from the hospital
– Cyndie Ewert’s mother, Andrea, facing serious health challenges
– For James and Ruth Nieman who are struggling with medical issues
– Jean Thurman having cataract surgery tomorrow
– For someone having serious medical tests today 
– For someone looking intensely for a new job
– For our City Council as they work through some management challenges
– For the Brumley family after the loss of their mom/wife/friend, Sissy
 
Devote yourselves to prayer, keeping alert in it with an attitude of thanksgiving;  COL 4:2
 
Debbie Lyons, Pastor
First United Methodist Church Winnsboro
301 Church Street, Winnsboro, TX. 75494
CLICK HERE for our Facebook
CLICK HERE for our website

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1-25-18 FUMC Updates

Thanks to everyone who came to the VISIONING meeting on Monday night – what an AMAZING night we had celebrating the incredible church memories that have “stuck” with people, identifying the “DNA” of our church (loving/caring/welcoming) and looking at the demographics of who REALLY lives in our community.  There are almost 68,000 people in a 20 mile radius of our church and the vast majority are 55 and older … this is very unique to our community when compared to the state as a whole. We also discussed the fact that since Jesus has given us our MISSION … to GO, MAKE DISCIPLES, our focus should be on the 57% of people in a 20 mile radius who are NOT involved in a religious community. (If you are interested in demographic research, please let me know – it’s QUITE fascinating!)
 
OUR NEXT VISIONING: Monday, February 5, 6:30 – 8 PM … we’ll be getting deeper into the specifics of where God is calling us to put our prayers, presence, gifts, service and witness in order to make new disciples for Jesus Christ.  We have one POWER HOUR of worship on Sunday mornings to make a first impression AND help each other grow in our faith – is the sermon, music, liturgy, etc. what it needs to be to be the BEST it can be? Do we need a team to focus on COMMUNITY EVENTS to bridge relationships with those outside our church?  Do we need more focus on CHILDREN?  Or YOUTH? Or EMPTY NESTERS?  Or ACTIVE SENIORS? Is our “aesthetic evangelism” holding us back? What do NEW people see, smell, feel, experience when they come? (A young man who was at the first visioning workshop told me last night with AUTHENTIC honesty that our church feels like his great grandmother’s house … I asked him if there was a lot of LOVE in that house and he said “Yes, but it’s a really old house.”) 
 
I was going to send a survey out to the congregation this week but I’m going to wait until after our NEXT visioning meeting so we have some more time to talk before zeroing in on specifics. I will, however, be putting a survey on our FACEBOOK asking people who are NOT CONNECTED to a religious community to share WHY … you should see that on Facebook next week. STAY TUNED!
 
HIGH SCHOOL KIDS:  we’re REVIVING an old tradition … STEAK NIGHT AT MY HOUSE, this Saturday, 1/27, 5 PM … after a great confirmation conversation this week, the parents decided to have a relaxed, “no agenda” night for ALL the high school kids to talk about “what’s next”.  I have sent an email to all the kids that we KNOW of but please be sure to spread the news to your kids/grandkids that I might not know about.  Ken Ragsdale is handling the food with the parents and we WOULD like to have an idea of how many kids to fire up the grill for … I’ve heard from MANY of you and I’m excited to get to know these kids!
 
FINANCE COMMITTEE UPDATE: the finance committee had a great meeting this week and your 2018 year end statements will be in the mail next week. Thanks to ALL of you who give so generously to God!
 
We have  decided NOT to publish the weekly offering amounts in the bulletin because after discussing the purpose of reporting that number, we see better ways to be transparent about our financial position.  Instead, we will be announcing when Church Council Meetings are and everyone is always welcome to attend and discuss finances as well as other things, and we will make quarterly updates from the pulpit.  Our monthly financial statements are ALWAYS available as we are an “open book” so feel free to contact us if you have questions.
 
We’re also working on some other exciting things and I can’t wait to share them with you soon!
 
BASIC and ADVANCED LAY LEADERSHIP TRAINING … March 10th and 24thFUMC Deport. How wonderful to have training in our own back yard!!  Basic Lay Servant Training and an advanced class: “Called to Preach”. (The Called to Preach is a new course that is replacing the “Go Preach”.  The book we will be using is titled “From Pew to Pulpit” by Clifton F Guthrie.)  Classes are open to anyone interested and you are NOT required to become a Lay Servant.  The Basic Class is useful for anyone interested in being an active member of the church.  (Anyone whose last training was in 2015 or before needs to recertify this year)  Contact  LORI MASSEY, East District Director of Lay Servant (Speaking) Ministries 903-227-0302
 
GO CAMP for KIDSOur very own KIMBERLY NOE is going to be one of the volunteers at these fabulous new GO CAMPS that bring the CAMP to the KIDS … a great weekend camp outside of Paris, TX. February 23-25 in Detroit, TX (CLICK HERE FOR DETAILS) or the summer camp in July:  CLICK HERE FOR THE JULY CAMP. Please don’t let financial concerns keep your children/grandchildren from participating – talk to me!!
 
RADA CUTLERY UPDATE …The sale of Rada cutlery continues to be UMW’s main income source.  A new order will be submitted soon.  Call 903-629-2259 if you will be needing anything for yourself or a gift. CLICK HERE to see the catalog.
 
REMINDERS:
 
LEADERSHIP TRAINING DAY: 1/27, 9 am – NOON, 1st UMC Sulphur Springs  … one of the true benefits of being a CONNECTIONAL denomination is that we have learning and growing opportunities from a GREAT group of leaders outside the walls of our own church. Your elected leaders are ALL encouraged to attend this workshop but it is for EVERYONE IN THE CHURCH!  We are especially excited about this year’s training with ALL the Center Director Leaders from our Conference Office – this is a RARE opportunity to learn from the LEADERS!   They will open the day with their work and plans for 2018 and then open up the floor for a panel discussion with questions and responses. When this is over we will adjourn into five breakout sessions and YOU GET TO CHOOSE which of these are of interest to YOU!  
– Working in discipleship ministries, children and youth, camping and retreats, and adult Christian formation. (This is a VERY important area for us!)
– How to organize a mission team to south Texas to help with ongoing rebuilding after Hurricane Harvey this year. 
– How churches can experience church vitality and new energy through community engagement. 
–  Those interested in the finances and asset management of the church will appreciate the administrative issues and new laws and policies that will affect local churches.
 
“Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.” (Matthew 5:15–16)
 
Debbie Lyons, Pastor
First United Methodist Church Winnsboro
301 Church Street, Winnsboro, TX. 75494
CLICK HERE for our Facebook

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1-17-18 FUMC Updates

Bbbbrrrrrrr!!! I must admit that I’m a little sad when I realized we weren’t having our Wednesday night Fellowship meal or choir practice this week, but I didn’t even want to walk from my house next door to come to the church so I’m sure you ALL appreciate that we’re just trying to be good stewards of you, the people we love!  I usually turn the heat on in the sanctuary between 5-7 PM on Saturday nights but I’ll turn it on a little earlier this week to be sure it’s nice and warm on Sunday, but it’s going to be in the 60’s on Saturday and Sunday so we should be out of this COLD SNAP by then!
 
I’m excited to be launching a new sermon series this week as we move out of the CHRISTMAS season into a brief season in the church before the EASTER season begins … yes, I said it … EASTER!  Believe it or not, Lent begins on Wednesday, February 14th which means we only have 4 Sundays before we begin our walk to the cross!  (YIKES!! This even makes ME sit up and take notice!!)  The next few Sundays we’ll be talking about how THE WILDERNESS HAS PURPOSE so fasten your seat belts … we have a lot to talk about in a few short weeks!
 
CLICK HERE for the January calendar that has details of ongoing activities for the week but here’s some special things happening:
 
CONFIRMATION MEETING FOR PARENTS of HIGH SCHOOL KIDS … this Sunday 1/21, 5 PM at my house … if you have kids in HIGH SCHOOL let’s talk!!  (Or you know of families who have not been coming to church but have kids in high school, please let me know … I’d love to reach out to them!)
 
VISIONING MEETING I, Monday, 1/22, 6:30-8 PM … I have been telling you all about this for a LONG time so I hope you know how important this is, not just to ME but to the future of our church … CLICK HERE for details on the church calendar.  Please be thinking about what God sees for the future of our church!
 
LEADERSHIP TRAINING DAY: 1/27, 9 am – NOON, 1st UMC Sulpher Springs  … one of the true benefits of being a CONNECTIONAL denomination is that we have learning and growing opportunities from a GREAT group of leaders outside the walls of our own church. Your elected leaders are ALL encouraged to attend this workshop but it is for EVERYONE IN THE CHURCH!  We are especially excited about this years training with ALL the Center Director Leaders from our Conference Office – this is a RARE opportunity to learn from the LEADERS!   They will open the day with their work and plans for 2018 and then open up the floor for a panel discussion with questions and responses. When this is over we will adjourn into five breakout sessions and YOU GET TO CHOOSE which are of these are of interest to YOU!  
– Working in discipleship ministries, children and youth, camping and retreats, and adult Christian formation. (This is a VERY important area for us!)
– How to organize a mission team to south Texas to help with ongoing rebuilding after Hurricane Harvey this year. 
– How churches can experience church vitality and new energy through community engagement. 
–  Those interested in the finances and asset management of the church will appreciate the administrative issues and new laws and policies that will affect local churches. 
 
PRAYERS: I apologize for using our PRAYER CHAIN to communicate WEATHER updates this week but texting really IS the fastest way to reach most of you. We are praying for:
– Jimmie Davis, who was hospitalized last weekend with a serious infection but is home recovering
– Continued healing prayers for Kathy Zimmerman and Dr. Alberto dela Cruz, and for the Bobby McCarley and Henry Hammann families.
 
Now may our God and Father himself and our Lord Jesus guide us on our way back to you. May the Lord cause you to increase and enrich your love for each other and for everyone in the same way as we also love you. May the love cause your hearts to be strengthened, to be blameless in holiness before our God and Father when our Lord Jesus comes with all his people. Amen. 1 Thes. 11-13
 
Debbie Lyons, Pastor
First United Methodist Church Winnsboro
301 Church Street, Winnsboro, TX. 75494
CLICK HERE for our Facebook
CLICK HERE for our website

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12-13-17 FUMC Updates

‘Tis the season to be jolly and I hope you’re anticipating Christmas as it gets closer and closer!

Beginning today, Laquita and I are going to start sending a weekly email, hopefully sent on Tuesday or Wednesday, with a recap of announcements and everything going on in the immediate future OR things that require more long term planning.  These posts will also be available on the website homepage for those who do not use email anymore.  If you have something to be announced to the congregation, please let us know!

WHO IS WAITING FOR YOUR INVITATION?

At this point in the Christmas season, most of us are scrambling to buy and wrap last-minute gifts, we’re up to our ears in cookies, we’ve got stockings to stuff, and parties to attend but I’d ask you to consider this … who is God nudging YOU to invite to church this Christmas?  Depending on the study you read, researchers predict that about 6 in 10 Americans will go to church on Christmas … this is very exciting because according to the Hartford Institute of Religion Research, more than 40% “say” they go to church weekly but less than 20% actually do! (In other words, more than 80 percent of Americans are finding more fulfilling things to do on weekends!) But since more people plan to attend church on Christmas, let’s invite them!!

This is a GREAT time of year to invite someone to come to OUR church this year …

1)      With a new Pastor there’s a “curiosity” factor! (Curiosity is what led the shepherds to meet Jesus, and curiosity could be what might lead the people you invite to meet Jesus as well!)

2)      The fact that our service is at 10 PM means it’s after dinner, after family time and a perfect time to offer to pick someone up or meet them at the door … it’s convenient!!

3)      Christmas spirit already has people doing things they wouldn’t normally do … when 1000 people were asked if someone they knew invited them to church on Christmas how likely would they be to attend, 57% said they LIKELY would!  How sad if no one invites them!

4)      THIS IS WHERE YOU CAN REALLY MAKE A DIFFERENCE … many people are in desperate need of good news and great joy!! Every day people are faced with difficult things in their lives – for many, the future seems bleak and hearts are broken! But remember what the angel said in Luke 2:10-11…  “I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born!” We can SHARE that good news!

Whether someone comes to church out of curiosity, because it’s convenient, because there’s a willingness to try something new, or desperation for a Savior, it could be your invitation that leads someone to meet Jesus! (At the very least, you’ll provide that person with a much-needed break from all the small talk and Christmas movies!!)

MANY THANKS!

Thanks to our men’s choir who did a GREAT job singing a special medley in church on Sunday … weren’t they awesome?! 

Thanks to everyone who sends me pictures of our church events – I get them on Facebook as soon as I can and also, I’ll do a video recap of some of the pictures I have since November 1st at the end of the year.  I don’t need TONS of pictures, just the best ones from your activities!

And thanks to all of you who “adopted” one of the residents at Morgan’s Mercy Mansion and took bags to fill for the women at the house – it’s a difficult season for them not being with family so everything we can do to help them in their recovery is appreciated!  Please bring your bags back THIS SUNDAY, 12/17.  IF YOU DIDN’T GET A BAG … feel free to bring an inspiring Christmas card for 1 or ALL of the 13 women now in the house!  Any word of God’s grace and love MATTERS!

Thanks to the 30 people who sponsored our Christmas poinsettias to honor or remember people in your lives.  Those names will be printed in the bulletin on Christmas Eve.

WEDNESDAY NIGHT FELLOWSHIP DINNER … 5:45 PM

Every Wednesday night the food is delicious and the fellowship is fabulous, and we’ve already begun the holiday spirit so please come!  But don’t miss THIS date:

ALL CHURCH CHRISTMAS PARTY … Wednesday, 12/20, 5:45 pm .. Bring a batch of your favorite cookies or candy to share!

 THERE WILL BE NO FELLOWSHIP DINNER:  December 27th or January 3rd

 

AN AFTER “CHRISTMAS IN THE PARK” COMMUNITY SALE: this Thu 12/14 & Fri 12/15, 9 AM – 6 PM

Inky would like your help to sit with her in Fellowship Hall this Thursday and Friday as we hope to sell the Christmas crafts left from Christmas in the Park. She has put an ad in the paper and will put up signs but she wants some company!!  Contact Inky at 903-347-6305.

CHRISTMAS CANTATA, “Born a Savior, Born a King”: this Sunday, 12/17 10:50 AM

I know how hard the choir is working to honor God with their ‘well rehearsed” joyful noise of praise and celebration for Christmas!!  They’ve all worked so hard during this very busy time of year so please don’t miss it!  We will have a short children’s message, prayer time, offering and a brief sermon then the choir will begin!

CAN YOU RECEIVE TEXT MESSAGES? If so, please join the PRAYER CHAIN now!

We live in a world of instant communication and when people need prayer, they need it right away!  I have set up a text messaging service that allows you to text me with your prayer requests as soon as you have them, and I can send them to every individual on the prayer chain one second later. While this is a group message, people cannot reply to ALL so you will not get a bunch of texts, only 1 per prayer request. Also, I will hold requests in the evenings after 9 PM until 8:30 AM the next morning. If you have unlimited text messages there is no cost to you, otherwise, text messaging rates will apply. Go to our website to learn more: CLICK HERE.

 PLANNING AHEAD … Volunteers in Mission

I’m grateful to John and Priscilla Massey who have offered to coordinate our MISSIONS activities at First Church … we have so many groups doing so many wonderful things and we want to be sure everyone knows what’s going on!  If you or your group have a mission project going on, please let us know so we can include you in our first gathering in January. Also, one of the most amazing training opportunities that the United Methodist Church has is our VOLUNTEER in MISSION program … if you’re interested in getting involved, check out the training dates and please talk with John (who has already been trained) or Priscilla (who will be going in the New Year) … CLICK HERE for details!

NO 5TH SUNDAY POTLUCK MEAL THIS MONTH!

PRAYER REQUESTS: our ongoing prayers for those listed in our Sunday bulletin continue and we are adding the following:

–          Bobbie Hollingsworth, Ray’s grandmother passed away 12/13/17 …
All services will be on Saturday, December 16th …1 pm … Visitation, Tinney Chapel
2 pm … Celebration of Life, Tinney Chapel, 
Graveside at Shady Grove immediately following.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to … Shady Grove Cemetery Association
Sherry Finney, SGCA Secretary/Treasurer
P.O. Box 861
Winnsboro, TX 75494

–          Jimmy Davis is having back surgery this Friday in Tyler

–          Dorothy Nulty is suffering with a serious case of the flu

–          Mary Tom’s son in law’s nephew was shot in the head during a military training exercise; prognosis has the family extremely concerned

–          For the 1st responders in California battling the wildfires
 
May your ADVENT SEASON be blessed with the anticipation of Christmas yet to come!
 
Pastor Debbie

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