APRIL 2019


First United Methodist Church

Hughes Springs, Texas

Volume 34
Pastor Bill Laubenberg
April 2019
Editor Debbie Kelley


It is a cry that has traveled through the centuries since that first Easter so long ago. It has not lost any of it wonder, any of its joy, any of its importance for our lives. Each year we are reminded by these words of how much God loves us and how much He was willing to do for us and our salvation.

One Easter a Sunday School teacher decided to do something different with her class. Do you remember the Leggs Eggs? They were hose that came in a large egg-shaped container. She gathered enough together so that each member of her class could have one. During the first half of the Sunday School time, she took her class out to the church yard and told them to find something that represented Easter. The children wandered around and gathered their items. Then everyone returned to the classroom to show what they had found. There were branches with new leaves on them, there were flowers, and one youngster had even caught a butterfly. Then it came time for little Freddie to show what he had found. Now Freddie was a child with special needs and everyone worried about what he might have found. When the teacher opened his egg, it was empty. The other children started to tease him. Before the teacher could say anything, Freddie with tears in his eyes cried out, “You don’t understand! It is empty! The tomb is empty!”

Freddie really did understand what Easter is about. The tomb is empty! Our Savior is risen! Death has been defeated! We are free from the power of sin; the Devil has lost. God had changed what seemed a defeat into the greatest victory ever won!

May we remember that He is Risen! That through the cross a pathway to life and salvation has been opened.

Pastor Bill

More from Pastor Bill

What is a Seder?

A Seder is ceremonial dinner that commemorates the Exodus from Egypt and includes the reading of the story and the eating of symbolic foods. It is the meal that Jesus and his disciples were celebrating when Jesus instituted (or began) the Lord’s Supper.

Come join us on Holy Thursday as we celebrate a Messianic Seder meal. We will be starting at 6 p.m. As this is a prepared dinner, we will need to know how many are coming so that we can get everything set. Please let us know if you plan to come by Monday, the 15th. You can call the church office or sign-up on the sheet outside the Pastor’s office.

Bible Study Update

We are still on break through the remainder of this month, but get ready we will be restarting on Wednesday May 1st.

For the coming study, there will be only one book you need, The Good Book. That is right, just bring your Bible. Together we will be working our way through the book of Romans.

Come join us as, with the Spirits guidance, we examine this important book of the Bible.

Meeting times will be at 10 a.m. and 6 p.m.

Pastor Bill

Church Family Directory

Directory pictures will be taken on Monday, May 13 and Tuesday, May 14 from 2-9pm. Please sign up for a time on the website.

Go to our church website and click the large yellow button in the center of the first page.

It will take you to the Lifetouch website. There you will be able to sign up for a time open that is best for you.

If you cannot make it to one of the picture days, you may submit your own photos. There is a fee of $5 to submit your own photo. You may put your physical photo and money in an envelope and put it in the offering plate or drop it by the office one day during the week.

If you would like to submit a digital version, please email it to Debbie in the office and put your money in the offering plate or stop by the office with it.

If you put it in the offering plate, please mark it “Church Directory Photo Submission”.

Men’s Breakfast

scrambled and bacon

April was a good month for the men. We had a total of twenty-one attending; five of those being church members with sixteen guests. Dr. Brockway gave an uplifting devotional. The next breakfast will be May 7, 2019. We will see you there,

Danny Lancaster

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

Thank You!


First United Methodist Chancel Choir

The experience of preparing for another cantata while keeping up normal daily activities can be stressful.   Scheduling practices, having them without everyone present, and then discovering the need for extra rehearsals are just a few of the challenges facing choir members.  Only the thought of achieving the goal of having a performance that is designed to inspire others motivates us to continue.  Please join us on Sunday, April 14, 2019, during the morning worship service at 11:00 to experience “Amazing Love – How Can it Be”

In His Love and With Ours – First United Methodist Chancel Choir

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.


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.

Remembering Your Church with Your Gifts

As all of us know, giving to our church to support God’s Ministry is something we need to remember. Today, we all have active lives. Including vacations, visiting out of town family, attending those special weddings and of course seeing our grandchildren.

Our lives can get hectic and sometimes we can forget our ministry to God. To help with that, we now offer online giving to the church.

Simply go to the church website:


From here you can donate your gifts to the church.

Heartspring Methodist Foundation is offering this to us at no charge. Every penny you donate comes directly to the church with no fees or service charges.

On this tab, you can decide to give to the general account for the church’s budget or to another special or designated fund. You can make memorials or honorariums to people. (Notifications will be sent to those families). You can make a one-time gift or set up a reoccurring gift. You can use your credit or debit card or have it drafted from your personal account. You can register and create an account or give as a guest. You have a lot of options to have it set up your way and you can change or delete your selection at any time.

So, during your busy schedule, give online giving a try.


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

A Little Reminder:

In case something comes up and you miss Sunday morning service.

You may go to the church Face book page and watch the entire service streamed live. If you can not watch it live, each Sunday’s service is streamed and stored on Face book. You can watch them anytime. If you have a favorite sermon that you would like to hear again, find that date in the video section and listen anytime.

Also, the church website offers many things for church members and those looking for a church home. The pastor’s blog, current calendar of events, the newsletter archived online, online giving, our church ministries and much more. Try to visit regularly, things are always changing.

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

Also, please try to keep us informed on the person’s condition.

Thank you, Debbie Kelley


Children’s Department

Children’s Moments:  We have filled the need through June, thanks to wonderful volunteers.    That still leaves us quite a bit short for the year.

Pray about it and listen closely to see if God is placing it on your heart to fill in one of these months.

Carly Tower,


Greta called today and wanted me to write something about the progress on Nadine’s Outreach. Bill has been working on restoring the knobs and working parts in order for the doors to open and close correctly. 

Some of the doors required cutting into the badly damaged part and replacing the inside with new wood, then gluing, sanding and painting the door.

 Extra boards attached to the original baseboards were removed and base boards were sanded with belt sander and grinder to remove excess paint.

The bedroom has been painted which is the room to be used for the outlet. The entrance hall is painted, three doors repaired.

Dining room has been painted with insulation added in the closet as ceiling was open to attic. There was a hole in the ceiling tile in the dining room and a decorative solution was found and solved that problem.

There is a lot to do to preserve the windows and doors and will be a Spring and Summer goal. We desperately need to have repairs done to the eaves to prevent more damage.

Money is being spent by individuals to help have the fund build toward that goal. The floors are to be sanded and sealed. come and look at what is going on.  I think of the house as a grand old lady that needs to preserved and of service.

Cathy Zachry

  • Insurance Companies
  • Engineers
  • Churches

Dear Church Members,

When dealing with these three separate entities, we must find patience. The insurance company, engineer and contractors do not get in a hurry when it is an 80-year-old historic building that is not in immediate danger of collapsing.

They take the time to find the right solution on how to repair the church. It may seem to some that nothing is being done to expedite this situation and I have received much advice on how to handle this situation.

Sometimes, the best decision is to let the professionals find the best solution on how to restore our precious church.

Being an 80-year-old building with a few problems to fix should not be an embarrassment for our church members. I don’t believe old age is an embarrassment but a privilege! Please continue to be in prayer for us and the people making these decisions.

 I will keep you updated as we get more information on how they plan to move forward.

Troy Perry

Trustee Chairman


food basket

We had a great volunteer turnout of twenty-eight for the March Shepherd’s Harvest Pantry and the Sr Box Distribution.  Having a great volunteer group helps get all the packaging done and the 12:30 distribution go smoothly.  We served approximately 140 people.  The volunteers are able to see first- hand that their efforts really provide for those in need.  

This is the third month of doing this combined service and we are starting to get the hang of it.  Contact Robyn Shelton to see where you can help!   

Submitted by Marsha Bryan Edson

Diaper Bank News

Remember the diaper bank is on the first Saturday of each month.

The diaper bank is always in need of more diapers and wipes.

Lisa Moreland