Friday, December 2, 2016

Dear Church Family,

What has served as a retreat for many over the years turned into a place of horror and sadness this week as the ravaging fires passed through Gatlinburg.  We watched with great sadness the reports of those who barely made it out alive and of those who sadly didn’t.   We were reminded once again of the bravery and courage of the firemen and volunteers who in some cases were working to save others while their homes were being destroyed.  Many of you have shown an interest in becoming involved with the relief effort.  Debbie and the school organized a drive this week to take water and granola bars over at the suggestion of a local news station.

I spoke with Jim Clayburn today who serves as our disaster response coordinator for this region in our conference.  He shared with me that they are still working with city and state officials and that from what he understands they have a place for them to manage but details are still being put together.  He did state that city officials are saying they have all the water and such that they need and have requested no more donations at this time.  That said, this is the worst disaster of this kind in a very long time.  In fact, Jim said he heard that things are worse than the media has even been able to report.   So the relief efforts will be ongoing for some time.  Again, if you are interested in helping with the distribution center that is being set up, please contact the church office and leave a message or speak with Brenda and she will compile a list for Jim so that he doesn’t get overrun with calls.  Volunteers will be there to sort and do whatever else is needed.  Thank you for all your support and prayers.
In the news:

  1. I will be sharing the message this Sabbath with a look at the 12 spies and their report. See Numbers 13-14.
  2. The first reading of the nominating committee report will be available this Sabbath.  Please review carefully and let us know if you find any mistakes.
  3. This Sabbath the Marsa team will be hosting fellowship dinner.
  4. AYA this week will be hosted by Elesia Gallimore at 5pm.
  5. Following AYA, there will be caroling at FOOD CITY on Asheville HWY from 6-7pm.  Instruments are welcome as well.  This is the 3rd year for this wonderful tradition of singing to the shoppers those familiar Christmas hymns.
  6. Elaine Sanford rests in Jesus now and her memorial service is scheduled for this Monday evening at the church at 6pm. Visitation will be from 4:30-6pmat the church prior to the service. In Lieu of flowers, donations can be made to our church or Community Services Center.
  7. Lee Becker is beginning a children’s art class from 4-5:30pm each Thursday in the Pathfinder room next to the CSC.  If your children would be interested, contact Lee Becker for more info.
  8. Just a reminder to be praying that God show you someone to share the new Thunder in the Holy Land series with. We have the 1st disc which includes the first four lessons in the office should you need one.  Pray for someone to share it with and God will introduce you to a searching soul.

I came across this video (scroll down at the site for the video about Henry)  that reminded me of the power of music.  Thus the passage in Zephaniah came to mind:     The LORD your God in your midst,   The Mighty One, will save;  He will rejoice over you with gladness,  He will quiet you with His love,    He will rejoice over you with singing.”   Zeph 3:17.

Blessings as you prepare for the coming Sabbath!

In His Service,
Pastor Jeremy

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