CROSS ROADS RED

First United Methodist Church

Hughes Springs, Texas

Volume 20
Pastor Bill Laubenberg
November 2017
Editor Debbie Kelley

from the pastor

A Time to Give Thanks

That time of year has come around again. The time when we pause to give thanks, eat a lot of turkey, and watch some football. A time for families to gather together.

At this time of year, I like to sit down and write up a list of those things for which I am truly thankful. I would like to suggest some things you might want to include on you lists:

First on anyone’s list should be thankfulness for a loving God. A God who cared enough to give us the gift of His Son. One that is more willing to give us grace, love and forgiveness, than to judge us.

Next would be to give thanks to our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Thanks that he was willing to come to earth to teach us His lesson of love. That he was willing to take upon himself the punishment we so richly deserved as He went to the cross for us.

We should not forget to give thanks to the Spirit who guides us down life’s pathways. Give thanks that through the Spirit we are called and enlightened. The Spirit who directs us in the ways that lead to Sanctification.

This is how any list of things to be thankful for should start. Other things to be included would be friends and families, the church, and our country. Yes, with all its faults, our country. It is a place like no other, where there is opportunity, freedom, and hope. It may not be perfect, and politicians may send us up the wall with their actions, but I for one am glad that I live here.

After these it is time to be thankful for things that have come into our lives. Included in this should be a thankfulness for your health and the opportunities to help those in need.

I hope that you will take the time to create your lists and I encourage you to keep them with you to lift up your hearts in any time of trouble that faces you before this time comes around again.

See You in Church

Pastor Bill Laubenberg

 

More from Pastor Bill 

Advent Bible Study Starting Soon

Starting on the 8th of November we will be going through an advent study to prepare our hearts for Christmas. The name of the study is, All I Want For Christmas. It will be a five-week study, which will focus on opening the gifts of God’s grace. Not only will there be weekly lessons, but the book also includes daily devotions. We will once again have a morning study at 10 am and an evening study at 6 pm. Come and join the one that fits best into you schedule. Books are available in the church office for $10.00 each.

Let us Abide

Are you interested in helping the church to move forward into the future, revitalized? Would you like to see the church grow? It is time to step up. On Saturday November 18th we will be having a meeting to decide if and how we will be moving forward at 1:00 pm. If you are interested and this time does not work for you,

 

Big Church Night Out Fall Tour

The Big Church Night Out Tour is coming later this month, on November 30. I have obtained tickets.

With artists like Newsboys, Sidewalk Prophets, 7eventh Time Down, Blanca, and more, it will be a night of contemporary Christian music.

It is taking place in Shreveport Municipal Auditorium starting at 7 p.m. Since I took a leap of faith and ordered the tickets they are at a lower price. Originally 25 dollars apiece, by ordering early and getting 12 tickets, they are just 18 dollars each. Dianna, Amy, and I will be going. Come and join us. Just let me or Debbie know if you are interested.

 The Cross Wall

One of the things that truly struck me when I first arrived here in Hughes Springs was the cross wall in the fellowship hall. I was told it was created by offering each family a chance to donate a cross to the church and these were placed on the wall. What I would like to do is ask again. If you, like Dianna, Amy and I, came after the wall was created but would like to contribute to the wall, now is your time. We are gathering crosses to be added to the wall. I already have several that people have given. Turn any you have in to Debbie in the church office.

Pastor Bill

Men’s Breakfast

scrambled and bacon

For the month of October, there were 22 men who attended the breakfast, including cooks.

The next Men’s breakfast if Tuesday, November 7 at 6:30 a.m.

Come join us!

 

 

This breakfast is open to all MEN from anywhere, any denomination and friends.

 

Thank You!

 

Thank you for your concern

 

A few months after my arrival in Hughes Springs I was placed by my insurance in a program to get my diabetes under control.

It included some major changes in my diet, the way I was eating, and my medication. As you noticed this had some effect on my health. During the time of transition, as my body got used to the changes, there were times when I was weakened even to the point of going to the hospital.

I have appreciated your concern during this time. However, that time has passed. I am feeling much better. Yes, I do get tired after doing two services on Sunday, but this is because of how much I put into the services not because I am sick.

This was the case when I first started ministry back in my 20s. I put a lot of energy into the services. I would like to thank you for your concern, but please do not worry. The changes were positive ones and my diabetes is under much better control.

Pastor Bill Laubenberg

The New UPPER ROOMS Are Here! 

When I say that to church members, I hear my Grandmother’s voice saying the same thing, back in the 1940’s, in my little country church in Oklahoma.  Yes, the Upper Room is older than I am!  First published in Nashville TN in 1936, it’s now in 100 countries and 33 languages.  To say God has blessed their work is definitely an understatement.  Many of us remember our parents/ grandparents reading this little devotional every day.  Why do I read it?  Because, even if I have only 15 minutes, the scriptures and brief devotional set my thoughts on heavenly things, before I begin to deal with my earthly responsibilities and commitments.  The writers are just everyday people who often touch on exactly what I need to hear.  Our church purchases the Upper Room for our members/visitors every two months.  The November/December edition is here!  Pick up your copy in the Sanctuary today!

Betty Harris, Education Chair

prayer large Please remember to call the Church Secretary’s office to add or remove anyone from our prayer list that is printed each week.
Samaritan's Purse Shoe Box Mission: Donations accepted. Please see or call Mavis Boyd for information: 903-588-0280

DOUBLE BOOKINGS

they are scary

call the office

If your organization or committee has an event to be held at or sponsored by the church, please call the secretary’s office at 903-639-2131, so it can be placed on the calendar, in the bulletin and in the newsletter.

This will help prevent double bookings at the church.

We will be glad to include a listing of your church meeting or activity in the newsletter, but remember that Debbie must have the information before the first of the month in order to have it in the newsletter.

Looking Ahead

Calling all Readers and Communion Assistants

We have been blessed by those who are already serving the church by taking part in the service as a reader or communion assistant. There is a core group in place, who are doing an excellent job, but we always could use more people. If you are interested in serving God and the church in this manner, please contact Debbie the church office.

Pastor Bill

Prayer Warriors

Please remember to call Debbie in the Church Secretary’s office to add or remove anyone from our prayer list that is printed in the bulletin and power point each week.

If you would like a church wide email sent for a prayer request, please contact Debbie in the office by phone or email.

 

food basket

Shepherd’s Harvest Food Pantry began a different distribution time for the month of October.  This new time did not seem to change our participation; therefore, we will continue to distribute the third Thursday of each month from 12:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.

Also, the Pantry is gearing up for the holiday season.  We have asked our congregants to participate in a “canned corn” good drive and have had quite a success.  We could still use a few more cans to complete the expected increase in clients during the holidays.  We would like to have all canned corn contributions in by November 12, and many thanks to all who brought have contributed!

Submitted by Lyn Baker

COMMUNICATION

If you are scheduled to enter a hospital please let the church office know. Need name of hospital, city and date of check in. This will help Pastor Bill be able to be with you in your time of need.

If you or a family member is unexpectedly admitted to the hospital, please give the church office the same information.

We are on this journey together and communication is key.

Pastor Bill

Office Needs

The church office is not on the prayer phone chain. Because of this, sometimes we miss information about members’ prayer requests or joys to share.

If you have a prayer request or know of one, please call (903-639-2131) or email hsfumc@yahoo.com, the church office. If you call after office hours, please leave a message on the voicemail.

This will help us to know when one of our church family has a special need.

If you have a Thank you to include in the newsletter, please send it to the church office. You may bring it by or email it to me.

Thank you, Deb Kelley

YOUNG CHRISTIAN METHODISTS

My wife keeps reminding me that we need to find a better name for this group. Any suggestions would be welcome. The young people will have the final say in what we choose.

As Football season is drawing to a close, we will be moving our meeting day to Friday. In talking to the young people and their parents, this seems to be a better day. Also, when we do have movie nights, it will be a good night for parents to have a night out.

The meetings will also be a time to get started learning the music for the children’s Christmas program

Pastor Bill

Youth Group

This year, our Youth group participated in the “See You at the Pole” event at the High School on Sept. 27. Very proud of our youth for their participation.

Meetings continue Wednesday nights with a snack provided.

2017  Leadership Training

 

Workshops:                    Leaders:

TRUSTEES                             Mr. David Turner

STAFF PASTOR PARISH

DS Rev. Chuck Huffman

FINANCE                                   TBS

CHURCH OFFICE 101

District Admin Assts.                       Lonna Nunn & Anna M Rohde

    Each workshop will be offered once at each location and last approximately 1 hour.

 

When:          Saturday, November 18

  • 1:00 PM @ Pittsburg First United Methodist Church

109 College St., Pittsburg 75686

Pastor Bill asks that all those who are on the Trustee, SPRC and Finance for 2018 make plans to attend. This worship will help you have a great start for the new year.

Pastor Bill

Interested Women of the Church

IWC 

IWC had our annual garage sale Oct. 13-15. It was a good couple of days but not what we wished for!! Hopefully, next year will be better! The weekend of the 29th we had a 5th Sunday luncheon and was a great luncheon and great turnout!

I want to Thank all of the ladies that are always by my side: Robyn Shelton, Mary Wallace, Patsy Lancaster and Greta Wright! I couldn’t do it without ya’lls help!

Thank you,

Shelli Fickling

Last month, I reported that the trustees were working with the Finance Committee to purchase the lots and houses next door to the parsonage. The purchase has been made. We now own the entire block. What  grand ideas for ministry can we think of to encompass the new property and the current. The sky is the limit.

The Trustees will be calling upon everyone, ladies and gents, for a work day – inside and out. Date depends on East Texas weather and holidays.

We hope to have some cleaning progress done by Thanksgiving.

You will be notified of a scheduled work day. In the meantime, if you see something you can work on now, contact myself or another Trustee.  We are happy to have volunteers.

Submitted by Billy Wayne McKinney

 

 

MISSIONS

Shepherd’s Harvest Food Pantry began a different distribution time for the month of October.  This new time did not seem to change our participation; therefore, we will continue to distribute the third Thursday of each month from 12:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.

Also, the Pantry is gearing up for the holiday season.  We have asked our congregants to participate in a “canned corn” good drive and have had quite a success.  We could still use a few more cans to complete the expected increase in clients during the holidays.  We would like to have all canned corn contributions in by November 12, and many thanks to all who brought have contributed!

Submitted by Lyn Baker

 

 

 

Diaper Bank News

The diaper bank is getting busier and busier each month. During September’s diaper bank, we had given away twelve packages of diapers by 10:30 am and ran out of some sizes, which others coming in later needed. We ended up giving away seventeen packages of diapers with only one package of size one and no wipes.

I do not believe that running out of diapers is a complete negative because that means we are serving more of God’s children. However, this does indicate that we need more donations. I am going to try to obtain diaper donations from local stores, but if anyone knows of someone who would be willing to donate, please let me know.

Thank you, Lisa Moreland

 

WORSHIP

DID GOD CALL YOU RECENTLY?

As Worship Chairman for this past year, I began in June looking for and planning music for the choir to sing for Christmas. The cantata chosen is titled “Breath of Heaven” and during it, Mary and Joseph talk to each other and remember all that has happened in the past history to the nation of Israel and marveling that they are to be a part of God’s plan to reveal the Messiah.

Once Mary’s pregnancy was public knowledge, she endured scorn and gossip from friends and neighbors and even Joseph’s disappointment and mistrust. She questioned why God had chosen her and doubted that she was capable of doing what He was asking of her.  But Mary was willing to be used by God and prayed for Him to “be with her” and to “help her”.  There was no question, it was not an option, to not obey.

Joseph points out to those listening that when God called, Mary simply answered “Yes.”  In this part of the cantata, the choir sings of how we are all called by God in different ways, but when it’s God who calls, what else can the answer be?  We put our life into His hands and just do it!  We follow, saying “YES, AND AMEN!”

When God calls us, He contacts each of us in different and personal ways – through the Holy Spirit within us, through some insight from a friend, through an inspirational message or sermon, by touching our hearts with music or scripture; the brush of a gentle breeze against our face when our heart needs reassurance, in a dream that we don’t forget as soon as we awake, a beautiful sunset that literally takes our breath away.  Or a request from the church to serve – either just to participate or in a position of leadership.  If saying “yes” will place a demand on your personal time, then at least pray to be open to God’s call and willing to let your heart be moved to give it serious consideration. Then say, “Yes, and Amen!”

Nita

 

United Methodist Vocabulary Quiz

 

  1. What is the person called who assists in a worship service, including the lighting of candles? Server, Acolyte, Greeter, Usher

2. A way to partake of the elements in the Lord’s Supper is: Intinction, Carefully, Reaffirmation of faith

3. If you are outside the church and want to enter the sanctuary, what do you usually go through? The front porch, The threshold ,The upper room, The narthex

 4. What is a station? A military checkpoint, A cable television channe,l A pastor’s only church

5. When local churches send part of their offerings to their district and conference, it is called… Tithe, Apportionment, Investment

6.  Before we have a relationship with God, he offers us what kind of grace? Prevenient grace, Amazing grace, Justifying grace

 7. What’s the name of the four-year period after each General Conference? Olympiad, Fortnight, Quartet, Quadrennium

 8. If you want to serve as a local pastor, deacon, or elder, you would apply for what? Permit, Candidacy, Admission

 9. What do we call the bread and wine used in the Sacrament of the Lord’s Supper? Components, Elements, Delicious

 10. If you want to know what United Methodists believe, you would start with what section of The Book of Discipline? The index Articles of Religion, List of bishops, Nicene Creed

 

Answers: United Methodist Vocabulary Quiz

  1. What is the person called who assists in a worship service, including the lighting of candles? The correct answer is acolyte. Typically, the role of acolyte is filled by a young person, but adults are allowed to serve as acolytes, too. The local pastor can decide who serves and what duties are appropriate.
  2. A way to partake of the elements in the Lord’s Supper is: The correct answer is intinction, the act of dipping the bread into a chalice filled with wine, then eating the moistened bread.
  3. If you are outside the church and want to enter the sanctuary, what do you usually go through? The correct answer is the narthex, the part of the church building that connects to the entrance door of the sanctuary.
  4. What is a station? The answer is a pastor’s only church. A station is a pastoral assignment that is made of only one local church. This is in contrast to a circuit, which contains two or more churches.
  5. When local churches send part of their offerings to their district and conference, it is called… The correct answer is apportionment, a long-standing tradition in The United Methodist Church.
  6. Before we have a relationship with God, he offers us what kind of grace? The correct answer is prevenient grace, a presence that does not depend upon our actions or response.
  7. What’s the name of the four-year period after each General Conference? The correct answer is quadrennium. The quadrennium is the four-year period after each General Conference during which the church carries out the policy and plans approved during that General Conference.
  8. If you want to serve as a local pastor, deacon, or elder, you would apply for what? The correct answer is candidacy, a discerning and preparatory period of time for the candidate. Those who want to serve as local pastors, deacons or elders use this time to explore their calling. During this time, the candidates also guided and evaluated by their annual conference.
  9. What do we call the bread and wine used in the Sacrament of the Lord’s Supper? The correct answer is elements, the bread and wine used in the Lord’s Supper.
  10. If you want to know what United Methodists believe, you would start with what section of The Book of Discipline? In 1808, the General Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church passed the first Restrictive Rule, ensuring that the Articles of Religion may not be changed. To this day, the articles are printed unchanged in each edition of The Book of Discipline.

Scripture Readings for November

November 5

Joshua 3: 7 – 17
I Thessalonians 2: 9 – 13
Matthew 23: 1 – 12

November 12

Joshua 24: 1 – 3a, 14 – 25
I Thessalonians 4: 13-18
Matthew 25: 1 – 13

November 19

Judges 4: 1 – 7
I Thessalonians 5: 1 – 11
Matthew 25: 14 – 30

November 26

Ezekiel 34: 11 – 16, 20 – 24
Ephesians 1: 15 – 23
Matthew 25: 31 – 46