Ebenezer's History, 2022
Christmas Eve and Christmas Day - 2022
We had a good crowd for worship and celebration of the first coming of our Lord on the 24th; at least 69 people. On Sunday, the attendance was 47, a good attendance since it was Christmas Day. We thank everyone who attended and helped us to celebrate our Lord's birth. See you next year!
We will have a Christmas Eve service beginning at 5:00 p.m. with lessons and carols. We had planned to then build a bonfire at the barbecure shed area and sing more carols, but that part has been canceled due to very cold weather moving in.
On Sunday, December 25th, we invite you to our worship service filled with lots of singing. The service will begin at 10:00 a.m. Sunday school classes will not meet. Merry Christmas!
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AIM Presentation Report
We had about 20 people to attend the ZOOM meeting with a representative of The Association of Independent Methodists. AIM is “a network of Independent congregations committed to Christ-centered, Bible-based Methodism, which recognizes and appreciates the local autonomy of its member churches.” Note this is an association, not a denomination. It has been in existence for 57 years. Mr. David Chandler (I think that’s his last name) said that there have been as many as 180 churches that have reached out to them for information in the Southeastern area.
Churches which want to consider becoming an independent Methodist church can join AIM. There is a constitution to adhere to, and there is no push to change their current doctrinal beliefs, nor will there be. Churches that join can be pastor-led or lay-led. The church owns its own property, calls its own pastors, though AIM can lend some guidance and assistance in the search. AIM is a fellowship with like-minded believers, helping one another.
AIM is a mission-minded group, supporting missionary families in various areas, plus sponsoring youth camps and men’s and women’s spiritual retreats. They put out a quarterly newsletter to help keep the churches connected. This area sponsors six military chaplains. They charge no assessments or apportionments, but do expect churches to give freely to support the missions work, camps, etc. and to provide for administrative cost (one paid employee), and to help provide scholarships to two Christian colleges and one seminary (approved by AIM), plus continuing education for pastors. All, but the Administrative Assistant, are volunteers in the Association’s management team.
Each church signs a membership covenant to abide by the set of doctrinal beliefs, and to work to grow their set of believers into holy disciples. There is an annual meeting, to which all churches are encouraged to send a representative.
AIM works to provide some resources and to “empower the local church to do the work they want to do in their community.” At the annual meeting, churches vote on how AIM is governed, not how each church is governed. The local church governs itself.
To affiliate with AIM, the church signs a covenant, and must provide the minutes of the meeting in which joining AIM is voted on. The church then becomes a Discerning Associate for 2 years as the local church and AIM get to know one another. During this time, the Associate church cannot vote for constitutional changes, but otherwise has full voting rights. Either side can break off the relationship after a face-to-face meeting with prayer in which to air their differences and try to resolve them.
There is currently one AIM church in North Carolina in Denton that left the UMC 5-7 years ago. In regards to women pastors, there are none currently serving in the AIM churches in the southeastern district, but there is nothing in the constitution to prohibit women pastors. AIM has partnered with a private organization for pension funding, but the pastor’s compensation and pension funding are up to each individual church to determine and fund.
Mr. Chandler from Georgia, and Dr. Gary Thornton who pastors a church in Mississippi expressed their wishes for us to prayerfully consider the decision to disaffiliate from the UMC, and then the direction to take afterwards. Mr. Chandler does not recommend becoming a completely independent church—not associated with any association or organization, because such churches often do stray from doctrinal truth or close once their founding/current pastor retires, dies or moves on.
The proposition of joining AIM is intriguing, but a bit scary, too. Finding a pastor could prove to be a difficult task even with help from AIM. Is Ebenezer ready or willing to be totally in control of all our governance and missions, and so forth? Can we remain doctrinally sound and useful to God’s work in the world without more guidance from a larger organization or group than AIM would provide? As we now stand, do we have enough people able and willing to take up the mantle of leadership and governance to remain strong and to grow?
Please be in prayer and supplication to our good and gracious God as we continue to mull over our options, and the question of disaffiliation from the UMC. Thank you.
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Free Methodist Church Zoom Meeting - Report
On Sunday, December 4th, 2022 we heard from a representative of the Free Methodist Church organization. Rev. Jimmy Ellison spoke to 16 members of our church. He currently serves a church in Georgia, which he and his wife helped to found. He joined the Free Methodist Church in 2016, but was an elder in the UMC before that.
Ellison said that the Free Methodist broke off from the Methodist Church in 1860, because 15 pastors did not like to see churches selling favored pews and seating near the heater (wood stove, etc.) in the church. They were also abolitionists and opposed to enslavement of other human beings. The word Free refers to both situations.
The Free Methodists emphasizes evangelism, missionary work, and serving the marginalized people in a community. They have three Bishops in the United States, and 25 district superintendents. The organization is much smaller than the UMC. They currently have 856 worshiping congregations in the US organized into 25 Annual Conferences. There are 2-3 FMC churches in North Carolina at this time. There is more of a working-class atmosphere, constituency in the FMC than the UMC. Another difference is that the Pastor chairs the Church Administrative Board (Marsha M. was pleased to hear that!). Local churches help to choose their pastor by making a choice from a vetted list of pastors. The FMC favors longer appointments. Pastors are not guaranteed an appointment. Their apportionments cost is 9% of the operating costs of a church (mission, benevolence funds, for instance would not count towards that total).
Questions answered from attendees: Yes, they have women pastors, and diverse churches and pastors. They are conservative, Traditional Wesleyan, and hold to marriage as one man and one woman, and that same-sex sexual relations are incompatible with the Bible. There have been no debates within the FMC on changing these positions. Ellison explained that it is a connected group of churches, but with more autonomy than with the UMC or GMC. Most of the large churches appear to be joining the GMC when they leave the UMC.
There is up to a three-year process to go through in joining their group. If we go with them, we would become an affiliate first. Full membership is called a “society.” As an affiliate church, we and they could get a feel for one another before full commitment. Yes, they have the right to say no to us becoming full members of their organization, as could we.
Concerning the Trust Clause of the FMC: Any properties we hold the deeds for at the time of affiliation remain in our hands and complete ownership. Only building projects started after full membership would fall under their Trust Clause.
What I liked about this presentation was that Rev. Ellison seemed genuinely concerned with our spiritual state and was not trying to “sell” us on the Free Methodist Church. In their materials, they emphasize prayer, thoughtfulness, and strategic communication before changing our affiliation. I hope that our members are taking this seriously enough to be praying constantly about it!
For more information on the Free Methodist Church, visit their website at https://fumcusa.org. Their facebook page is found at https://www.facebook.com/fmcusa. You can read their Book of Discipline at https://fmcusa.org/resources/2015bodforeward. They have a magazine called Light + Life, which can be seen at https://lightandlifemagazine.com. Contact Cindy in the office if you would like a copy of the paperwork we received in the meeting concerning the affiliation process with the FMC.
We will have a Zoom meeting with a representative of the Free Methodist Church organization at our church on Sunday, December 4th, 2022 at 3:00 p.m. This is another group that we are checking into as a possible replacement for the UMC. The meeting is open to the whole church. No vote will be taken at this time.
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UMC District Superintendant Presentation - Report
Please note: Opinions expressed in this report are that of the author (Cindy Sears), and do not necessarily represent the opinions of all members of Ebenezer UMC.
Rev. Lori Beth Huffman, Appalachian District Superintendent, made the presentation in favor of remaining within the UMC. We were treated to a long exposition on the United Methodist Church and its organization as a connectional church. Yes, we know that the Book of Discipline’s stance on marriage as between a man and a woman has not been changed. Yes, we know that the espoused doctrines of the UMC coincide with historical doctrines of the Church. Yes, we know that the UMC concentrates much of their efforts on helping the downtrodden, the poor, and those involved in disaster (natural and manmade), and the marginalized. We are a church of grace and forgiveness and love. The Methodist in particular are suppose to be concerned with making disciples and encouraging them in their sanctification process through small accountability groups, along with worship, the sacraments, and Bible study.
What we are concerned with is the drift away from biblical and historical Christian doctrines. The number one issue now is marriage and the mainstreaming of homosexuality as not sin, though the Bible is quite explicit in its condemnation of such behavior in the Old and New Testaments (see 1 Corinthians 6:9-11; Romans 1:26-27; Leviticus 18:22). We are also concerned with being able to count on having a theologically and doctrinally sound pastor assigned here. Rev. Huffman promised that will be possible, but is that true? Will there be enough such pastors available in the future?
The veiled attempt to label those who want to follow God’s Word as mean-spirited or “unevolved” and to charge punitive amounts of money on us if we dare to question the UMC’s movement away from biblical and historical Christian doctrine does not ease the situation at all. We have a right and a duty as professing Christians to stand against the devil’s attempts to destroy the family and the Church from within.
Jesus did call us to unity. Unity in truth. He called us to love our neighbors, but love our God above all. Love sometimes must be harsh, as Jesus himself could be (see Luke 11:39-44; Mark 11:15-17); because eternity in hell is worse than anything else we can experience here on earth. The insinuation that sexual issues are “non-essentials” is Orwellian double-speak. Non-essentials involve forms of worship, choices of music, even days of worship—not calling what God has labeled as sin as not sin.
I disagree that the Global Methodist Church’s launching of their church caused the current crisis. The crisis was already upon us. The “Traditionalists” have been fighting the inroads of doctrinal drift in the Methodist Church for decades now. It is way past time to put an end to this. Despite what Rev. Huffman implied, the Global Methodist and the Free Methodist Churches both appoint and help their member churches find pastors. The GMC also plans to remain with Wespath (the UMC’s pension company) for their clergy pension plans.
The refusal of the UMC Bishops to deal with errant doctrinal stances among member churches is another reason that many members of our church and other churches have become disillusioned, and are considering withdrawal from the UMC. What good is a Book of Discipline or the Bible if we do not follow either one? As for the sexual issues being pulled out from the doctrinal (front) of the Book of Discipline and put in the regulatory part, those seeking to normalize homosexual sin precipitated the need to do so.
Now to the nitty-gritty, which we finally got to after some discussion about the LBGTQ+ business. Under Paragraph 2553, set up during the 2019 Special Called Conference, individual churches can vote to separate from the UMC by a 2/3 vote of the professing members (on the roll), and present for the vote. This is one reason we have been cleaning off our membership roll in the past 2 years of persons who no longer attend or support our church in anyway. This paragraph of guidelines for disaffiliation expires in December of 2023. Unfortunately, as previously explained after the GMC’s presentation and verified by Rev. Huffman, we must have all the paperwork in by April 1 of 2023 to be able to have it voted on at the Western North Carolina Annual Conference. After approval at the annual conference, we would then have to arrange to pay one to two years of apportionments, plus pay money to the UMC to help pay “unfunded” pension funds, plus pay back any construction/improvement grants received in the last 10 years. We cannot be certain that a better or even equivalent process will be available in the future (after the 2024 General Conference), though waiting and seeing what happens remains one of our options.
We thank Rev. Lori Beth Huffman for her presentation, but the lesson in the history of the UMC and its organization was not necessary. Most of the members of Ebenezer know at least some of that history and some of the ways that the connectional church organization works to do good in the world. That is why we are so saddened and alarmed to witness the UMC moving away from God’s truth and real love, and accepting the world’s version of truth and “love,” instead.
Please pray vigorously and often as we decide what to do. Whatever the decision, pray that our witness for Christ and his love will continue in this community, and around the world.
On Thursday, November 17th at 7:00 p.m., our disctrict superintendant, Rev. Lori Beth Huffman, will present reasons that we should consider remaining in the United Methodist Church instead of disaffliating. All members of our church are encouraged to attend. No vote will be taken at this time.
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Global Methodist Church Presentation - Report
Rev. Jim Church presented reasons for joining the new Global Methodist Church if we decide to disaffiliate from the UMC at our church on Sunday, November 13th, 2022 at 3:00 p.m. About 25 of our members showed up for the meeting.
Rev. Church is a native of North Carolina and has served churches in Catawba County. He and the church he serves now is in the process of disaffiliating from the UMC, and plan to join the GMC. He told us that the GMC plans to hold a general conference some time in 2023, though a date and location have not yet been set.
The GMC’s goal is to become a Global Church that promotes Methodist/Wesleyan traditions and Christian orthodoxy. Their theological beliefs are centered in “Scripture and the historic and life-giving teachings of the Christian Faith.” The GMC will promote ethnic and racial diversity and women as clergy and in all other offices of the church. Churches can now join at any time. Property and assets of the local churches will remain in the ownership and control of the local church (NO TRUST CLAUSE). The GMC will have Elders and Deacons (the designation of “local pastor” will be dropped). Bishops will have term limits, then return to being an Elder/Pastor or retire.
At this time there is only one way to disaffiliate from the UMC and retain our property: by following the process under paragraph 2553 voted on at the 2019 special conference. Under this provision, a church can depart as a “matter of conscience regarding UMC stance on human sexuality.” The church membership must take a vote at a Charge Conference winning at least 2/3 approval for disaffiliation. The church must pay two years of apportionments, plus a pro rata share of unfunded pension liabilities. “The Judicial Council has ruled annual conferences can add other requirements not inconsistent with ¶2553." This paragraph expires on December 31, 2023.
Unfortunately, we do not have to December 31, 2023 to decide, because our UMC District Annual Conference must vote on our disaffiliation this June, or we will not have another opportunity until after the next General Conference that will set new parameters for disaffiliation. There is no way to know if there will be better terms or worse once that happens. We must decide by the end of February or early March of 2023, and have all necessary paperwork, etc. in before our annual conference meets in June of 2023.
Please note that to keep our property, we must meet all the district’s guidelines and pay the fees requested. Rev. Church did provide us with the name of a law firm that will represent us in the process for $1,000 a year: The National Center for Life and Liberty.
It is estimated that the GMC’s apportionment requirements will be approximately 50% less than what we pay now. Other differences include: no guaranteed appointments for clergy (clergy must fulfill their pastoral duties to be appointed); the local church will be guaranteed input into appointment of a pastor; the GMC Book of Doctrines and Discipline is 88% smaller than the UMC's version (less complex structure); there will be enhancement of accountability at all levels of the church; church and clergy that transition together can stay together; there will be a strong new church planting movement; GMC will continue to use Wespath for clergy and lay employee retirement benefits.
We will hear from our current District Superintendent, Rev. Lori Beth Huffman on Thursday evening, November 17th at 7:00 p.m. All members of our church are encouraged to attend.
Please take the time to be in fervent prayer about our decision. The window of opportunity is closing soon. You can visit the GMC website at globalmethodist.org for more information.
(Report by Administrative Assistant, Cindy Sears.)
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UMW Country Store and Bake Sale, 2022 - Report
Thank you to everyone who came by for food and to shop the used items at the Country Store and Bake Sale. We had great crowds, and the Women raised over $3,000 for their ministries. Thank you, and my God bless you for your generosity!
With inflation still rising, it's time to come visit the United Methodist Women's Country Store for bargains and holiday gifts on Saturday, November 5 from 8:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. Enjoy some good food, too!
Breakfast biscuits will be on sale in the morning; hamburgers and hot dogs from 11:00 a. m. to the end. Home made cakes and pies will be on sale, along with gently used items.Items for sale include comforters, pillows, kayaks, pots, pans, dishes, decorative items, electronics, books, jewelry, furniture, baskets, shelves, toys, lamps, rugs, games, chairs, coushins, and more.
Proceeds will help fund the Women's ministries in the coming year.
We have 2 overflowing rooms of treasure to look through!
We thank you for your support!
All Saints Sunday 2022 - Report
We celebrated the lives of nine people on this special Sunday. We had a larger than usual attendance also. We lift up those families that lost a loved one in the past year, and ask that you continue to pray for them as well.
We will celebrate the lives of our Christian brothers and sisters who passed on to be with the Lord in the past year on Sunday, November 6. We hope to put together a slide show of these loved ones of our members and current associates, so please get pictures to us as quickly as possible. Send them to our email at firstname.lastname@example.org, or bring us a hard copy to scan. Thank you.
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Trunk R Treat - October 29,2022, 5-7 PM - Report
We had a great crowd at this event with over 20 cars and trunks decorated for the occasion. We thank our many volunteers and all our guests "trick or treaters" for a wonderfully fun and safe event.
For a safe and fun Halloween, join us and bring your kids and the neighbor's kids to Ebenezer UMC on Saturday, October 29 from 5-7:00 p.m. for our Trunk R Treat event. Our members are dressing up their truck beds and car trunks in scary ways to give out lots of free candy. We are serving up free hot dogs with brownies and cookies, too. Play it safe at our place!
Barbecue Fundraiser Friday and Saturday, October 21-23, 2022 - Report
Thank you to all our customers and workers who helped us to raise over $5,000 to fund our church ministries. May God bless you for you generosity.
It is coming! Join us on Friday and/or Saturday, October 21st and 22nd, 4-7:00 p.m. for our famous pork barbecue, prepared on the church grounds. Meal will include the meat, sauce, slaw, baked beans, homemade dessert of your choice and drink (in-house orders only) for $10 a plate (adults), $6 (child, 12 and under). Take-out plates will be available. Please call ahead for large orders. We thank you for your support of our church.
Breast Cancer Awareness Sunday
We will have a display to honor those who have had deal with breast cancer or died because of it on October 16th. We ask our worship attendees to wear pink this Sunday as a reminder of how dangerous this disease is, and to emphasize the need for regular check-ups.
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Homecoming! October 9th, 2022 - Report
Praise be to God and our generous members and friends! We raised $12,179, plus $1,000 from the previous Sunday for our General Fund for our Homecoming/$10,000 Sunday offering. May God bless everyone who gave on this special day, and our regular attendees who give each Sunday to keep our church and its ministries funded.
We had around 130 people attend on Sunday, including some faces we have not seen in a long time. We were blessed by your presence, visitors and members, and former members. Rev. Eric Lane gave us a great sermon, encouraging us to continue spreading the Gospel-Good News about Jesus within our community and beyond. Please pray for us to remain strong in our faith and in our service to the Lord. The food was delicious and plentiful, too. Thank you for a great Homecoming!
We are gearing up now for our annual Homecoming and $10,000 Sunday on Sunday, October 9th at 10:30 a.m. We invite all our current members and attendees, and past members and friends to join us for worship as we celebrate another year of service to the Lord in Dudley Shoals. Our guest preacher this year is Rev. Eric Lane, who served Ebenezer for a long time during the building of the Christian Life Center.
We encourage everyone to dig down deep and give as much as you can to help us reach the goal of $10,000 of contributions on this special Sunday. God will bless your generosity!
After worship, you can join us for a pot-luck lunch. Current members and friends are encouraged to bring a favorite dish or dessert to share. Ebenezer will provide drinks and plates, etc.
Please note that Sunday school classes will not meet on this day. See you soon!
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Our worship attendees gave $654 through our Thank Bank donations that will be sent to UMCOR to help their recovery efforts after the Kentucky floods. May God bless you for your generosity.
Community Fun Day - Report
We all had a wonderful time at this event, and lots of people joined us for the fun, especially children. It was great to watch the children enjoy the water slide, the reptile zoo (a must-see exhibit as far as many of the children were concerned), the bounce house, and the dunking booth, which was filled constantly with older kids getting dunked by other kids and adults. Below are some photos from the day. We hope to see you there next year, the good Lord willing.
Community Fun Day returns on Saturday, August 6, from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. You are invited! Everything is FREE.
We will have a waterslide, bouncy house, reptile zoo, and dunking booth. Grace Chapel Fire Department will bring their fire truck to show off, and there will be music and other surprise activities.
Foo includes, hot dogs, popcorn, cotton candy, cookies and brownies, and beverages.
NOTE: Children who want to play on the waterslide need to wear appropriate swimming attire and bring a towel All children must be accompanied by an adult.
Come and enjoy a fun day in the sun; and a cool inside area to eat.
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Robin's Nest Collection
Throughout June and July, we will be collecting toys, stuffed toys, coloring books, crayons, etc. for preschoolers and young children for the Robin's Nest Ministry that works with abused children in our area. Please place the new or in good condition items in the boxes in the old fellowship hall. Thank you for your generosity.
Youth Summer Program Schedule
Please note that there have been some changes from what was published in the June Newsletter. Check here first before making your plans. Youth who participage must have a permission form filled out and signed by a parent or legal guardian.
- July 28: Hickory Crawdads Baseball Game. $10 per for tickets. Leave Ebenezer by 6:30 p.m.
Here are some photos of the before and after work completed by our youth group on July 7th Summer Fun and Service outing:
Great work guys!
Previous activities included a June 9 work day at the church, a June 16 pool party, on June 23 a trip to South Caldwell Christian Ministries to help there, a Lakeside Park Hike and Cookout, a trip to Finding Hope Ministries new Thrift Shop to help organize items, a trip to the Parkway at Sunrise (unfortunatel rained out), and the Hickory Crawdads game above. Thank you to all those who participated and helped. See you next summer, too.
Summer Red Cross Blood Drive
Join Camp Do Good. Donate blood. Help save lives.
Our summer Red Cross Blood Drive will be on Monday, July 25 from 2:30 p.m. - 7:00 p.m. A free spaghetti meal, and/or snacks will be available for the donors and workers.
Please visit RedCrossBlood.org and enter: Ebenezer UMC to schedule an appointment. On the day of the blood drive, you can go back online at RedCrossBlood.org/RapidPass to complete your pre-donation reading and health history questions, and save up to 15 minutes.
Donors will be automatically entered for a chance to win an exclusive Shark Week merchandise package thats to Discovery! See rcblood.org/sharkweek for more information.
We thank you for your generosity.
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Pastor Alan Teaching Wednesdays
Pastor Alan is teaching from the New Testament books of 1 & 2 Timothy and Titus during Wednesday evening's adult Bible study time, 7-8:00 p.m. We invite you to come and hear the Word of God expounded upon by our Pastor. You do not need to be a member of Ebenezer to attend.
Porch Sale and Breakfast Biscuits
Look for bargains, and buy a good, quick, hot breakfast of sausage or livermush biscuits and coffee at Ebenezer on Saturday, June 25, 7:00 a.m. to Noon.
And if you have some used items or wares that you would like to sell, rent a table for $10 and sell them this weekend at Ebenezer. You keep the proceeds from your sales.
Table rental fees, and biscuit sales proceeds will go towards paying off the roof repair loan our church took out last year. We thank you for your support!
Spaghetti Supper, May 14, 4-7:00 pm.
We will have a Spaghett Supper Fundraiser for the Teacher's Closet ministry on Saturday, May 14 from 4-7:00 p.m. Proceeds help supply the needs of local teachers and students that are not filled by the school budget. Help the local schools and their teachers and students, and enjoy a good, hot meal, too! Thank you for your support.
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Holy Week Special Services and Events
During the week before Easter we will have the following special services: Holy Thursday/ Maundy Thursday, April 14th at 7:00 p.m. with Communion; Good Friday Service, April 15th at 7:00 p.m. in the Cemetery (weather permitting). Please bring a chair.
On Saturday, April 16th, we are asking our members to join us at 9:00 a.m. to help spruce up the church and set-up the dining area for the Easter Service and Breakfast.
Easter Service, April 17th begins at 7:00 a.m. A free, hot breakfast will be served after the worship service. Sunday school classes will not meet.
Art and Crafts Show
REPORT: We had a good turnout of people showing their crafts and art or selling other items; and lots of people came to enjoy the Poor Man's Supper. We thank everyone for their donations and help. We raised almost $1900 to pay on the roof-repair loan. Praise be the God and to you!
We are gearing up for another Art & Crafts Show that will be held in our Christian Life Center on Saturday, April 9th from 4-7:00 p.m. We invite all local artists and crafts makers to bring their works to the church to display and sell. Proceeds from your sales belong to you, but we would appreciate a small donation to our church (not required).
A Poor Man's Supper will be served for donations to everyone who comes to display their works or to view them. Help support your local artists and crafts people, and join us for an evening of good food, and local artworks and crafts.
Ebenezer's profits will go toward paying off the loan we acquired last year to fix a leaky roof. Sponsored by Ebenezer's United Methodist Women's group. We thank you for your support.
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Special Offerings in March
REPORT: We raised $673 to give to Finding Hope Ministries to go toward their work with Ukrainian refugees. Thank you for your generosity!
We will be taking up two special offerings in March. The Thank Bank collection for the next three weeks (March 13, 20, 27) will go to Finding Hope Ministries in Romania to help with their efforts to give medical aid to the Ukrainian people. They are also taking in refugees from the war.
The Sunday, March 27th special offering for United Methodist Committee on Relief, aka UMCOR has been postponed. We will finish up the special offering for Finding Hope Ministries before taking an UMCOR offering.
We ask you to consider giving generously to Finding Hope Ministries this Sunday, March 27th.. Thank you.
Adult Bible Study Returns on Wednesdays
Our weekly combination prayer meeting/Bible study for adults returns this week, Wednesday, March 16th at 7:00 p.m. You do not have to be a member of Ebenezer to attend.
Ash Wednesday Service
We invite you to our Ash Wednesday Service on March 2nd as we begin the season of Lent.
Invitation to the Observance of Lenten Discipline:
Dear bothers and sisters in Christ: the early Christians observed with great devotion the days of our Lord’s passion and resurrection, and it became the custom of the Church that before the Easter celebration there should be a forty-day season of spiritual preparation. During this season converts to the faith were prepared for Holy Baptism. It was also a time when persons who had committed serious sins and had separated themselves from the community of faith were reconciled by penitence and forgiveness and restored to participation in the life of the Church. In this way the whole congregation was reminded of the mercy and forgiveness proclaimed in the gospel of Jesus Christ and the need we all have to renew our faith. I invite you, therefore, in the name of the Church, to observe a holy Lent: by self-examination and repentance; by prayer, fasting, and self-denial; and by reading and meditating on God’s Holy Word.
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Thank You for Your Generosity!
During December, we collected one person meals and snack items for the food pantry at Caldwell Community College and Technical Institute. The Thank Bank money for December goes to this mininstry, too. This helps feed students on campus all day, who may not be able to afford to eat out (they no longer have a food service on campus).
Our members and friends gave $135 to this ministry, and all these food items in the picture below:
Blood Drive Monday, Jan. 24 - Report
Despite snow, church closings, and bad road conditions in some areas, we ended up with 19 whole blood and 4 Power Red products collected at our 2022 Red Cross Blood Drive. We thank everyone who participated and helped with this effort.
Our winter blood drive for the American Red Cross will be held on Monday, January 24 from 2:30-7:00 p.m. We will serve free soup and sandwiches and snacks to those who come to donate or help.
Go to RedCrossBlood.org and enter: Ebenezer UMC to schedule an appointment or call the church office at 828-396-2214, Monday-Friday, 8:30 - 1:00 p.m. and the office manager will sign you up online. We thank you for your support of this worthy endeavor.
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Cornhole/HotWings Challenge -2022
Report: We had a great crowd show up for the Cornhole Tournament, and the die hards staying for the Hot Wings Challenge at 6:30 p.m. on Saturday. Lots of people wanted to have some fun before the big storm hit on Sunday. Thank you to everyone who participated and helped.
On Saturday, January 15, 4-7:00 p.m., we invite you to come prove your Cornhole prowess or your ability to stand the heat on hot wings. The Cornhole Tournament begins at 4:30 p.m. and cost is $20 per team. Even if you can't throw, you can come to watch, and cheer on the competitors.
The Hot Wings Challenge begins at 6:00 p.m. Each challenger will eat 10 hot wings starting with a mild sauce and going to extremely hot! During the event, the eaters will discuss questions provided by an emcee. No winners, but those who make it to the end will have bragging rights!
Hamburgers and hot dogs will be on sale to those who come to watch or participate.
Proceeds go to help a family in the church. We thank you for your support.
January Newsletter is now online
The January 2022 Newsletter can be found by going to the Newsletters page. The Mini-Bible Lesson for this week is in the newsletter in the Something to Pray About column for this month. It will be posted on the Mini-Lessons page later.