In A Nutshell | November 20, 2015

Hello, Oak Chapel friends,
We have a busy weekend ahead of us at church. Tomorrow morning I am teaching a Sacraments workshop from 9:00 till Noon. If you’d like to know more about our United Methodist understanding of baptism and communion, this is the class for you. I hope to see you there.
On Sunday during worship, there will be a World Thank Offering presentation by the United Methodist Women and in honor of Reign of Christ Sunday, I will give a brief meditation titled “A State of Being, A Way to Live,” based on Revelation 1: 4 – 8. Following worship we will have a light lunch, then decorate the sanctuary and other parts of the church for the Advent and Christmas seasons. We invite everyone to join us for this fun, festive activity.
Also, please note that since we are having an Advent decorating luncheon and party this Sunday, November 22, the Christian Education Committee decided that we will not have an Advent breakfast before Sunday School on the first Sunday of Advent this year (November 29).
Below you will find announcements and other important information about upcoming events. Please review and mark your calendars accordingly.
Children’s Sunday School Assistants
Terra Aten leads the young children’s Sunday School class that meets during worship each Sunday morning. Her assistant this Sunday, 11/22 is Cathy Shallenberger.  Her assistant next Sunday, 11/29 is Evelyn Silver.
Church Office Closed / Pastor Robin away
The church office will be closed Tuesday, November 24 through Friday, November 27 for the Thanksgiving holiday, and will reopen on Monday, November 30. Pastor Robin will be away Tuesday through Saturday. For pastoral emergencies, please contact Kenn Curren, pastor at Apple Creek UMC at 330-464-2333.
Salvation Army Bell Ringing
Members and friends of Oak Chapel UMC will once again rings bells for the Salvation Army. This year we will ring on December 22 from 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. at Buehler’s Town Market. Please see Janet Kauffman to sign up or call her at 330-435-4569.
Advent / Christmas Worship Series – Testify to Love
“Whoever does not love does not know God, for God is love.” — 1 John 4:8
Our scriptures for the Advent/Christmas season allude to a powerful Love that we wait for, that we witness at the coming of the Christ child, and that we embody as children of God–the Body of Christ. The song, “Testify to Love” (recorded by Wynona Judd and Christian group Avalon, and made popular on the TV series “Touched by an Angel”), is the inspiration for the theme. It will remind us throughout the season that God’s call to us is to testify to this amazing love, giving thanks to God “with every breath we take!” This season is a good time to invite your friends and neighbors to church. Why not invite them to join you for this new worship series?
Blessing of Mountain Vision Christmas Gifts
If you purchased gifts for the children Valley Head, West Virginia, please bring your wrapped packages to worship next Sunday, November 29. (Packages should be wrapped with the child’s yellow slip taped to the outside of the box. No bows or outside decorations, please). We will have a blessing of the gifts during worship next Sunday.
Art and Soul
Art and Soul is a discipleship group that meets on the first Monday of each month at 7:00 p.m. The group explores various art media and welcomes the sharing of ideas and talents. There will be no meeting during the month of November. At the December 7 meeting, Kay Bergen will teach arm knitting. No particular skills are necessary; just an interest in trying new things.
Colors of Christmas
On the first Sunday of Advent (November 29), we will begin our annual Oak Chapel tradition of the “Colors of Christmas.” Members are encouraged to wear something reflecting each week’s color.
            Sunday, 11/29 – Green (signifying life)
            Sunday, 12/6 – Purple (signifying royalty)
            Sunday, 12/13 – Red (signifying sacrifice)
            Sunday, 12/20 – Blue (signifying eternity)
            Thursday, 12/24 – (Christmas Eve) – White (signifying purity)
            Sunday, 12/27 – Gold (signifying riches)
Christmas Caroling and Fellowship Luncheon
On Sunday, December 20, we will have our traditional monthly fellowship luncheon after worship. After the luncheon (approximately 12:45pm), we will gather in the Narthex, then set out to carol to our homebound members. Everyone is welcome to join us for this festive event! This is a great way to both experience and share the joy of the season. If you know of someone who might appreciate carolers coming to his/her residence, please let Pastor Robin know by Sunday, December 13 so she can coordinate our travel schedule that day.
Longest Night Service
On Tuesday, December 22 (the longest night of the year), we will have a Longest Night service at 7:00 p.m. This service, composed of scripture, stories, reflection and healing prayer, recognizes that Christmas can be a bittersweet time. Come experience worship that takes time for remembering, sharing our hurts with God, and preparing for the coming of Christ.
Opportunities for Ministry Next Week
Sunday, 11/22 – Sunday School at 9:30am
                                    Worship at 10:30am
                                    Light lunch and decorating after worship
Monday, 11/23 – Bible Study at 10:15am
                                    Prayer Shawl Ministry at 5:30pm
                                    Candy Making at 6:15pm
                                    Staff-Parish Relations Committee at 7:00pm
Tuesday, 11/25 – Friday, 11/27 – Church Office Closed
Thursday, 11/26 – Happy Thanksgiving!
Saturday, 11/28 – Weight Loss Support Group
It is a privilege to be your pastor and to serve among such an amazing community! I look forward to seeing you in church on Sunday!
Grace and peace,
Pastor Robin

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