ST. PAUL’S EV. LUTHERAN CHURCH
474 Yalick Road - PO BOX 802
DALLAS, PA 18612
December 2013 / January 2014
The next issue of the GOOD NEWS will be the February 2014 issue.
The deadline for all submissions will be Noon, Sunday, January 19th.
Please remember that items for the Saturday and Sunday bulletins are
due in the church office by Noon on Thursdays.
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Please remember to ask permission from the person you are placing on the prayer list.
Pray for Shut-In Members: David & Mary Hopkins, Bernie Hill, Bruni Bayer, Margrit Hislop.
Pray for those suffering illness:
Members: Marge Fritzinger, Catherine Grieshaber, Hank Henry, Andy Kaskus, Barbara Kessler,
Ray Mancke, Olivia Marquart, Jan Martinchak, Vic McCarty, Dorothy Peiffer, Mylee Powers,
John Reishus, Dianna Smith, Mark Walters, Betty Weaver, Justin Yost, Don Zimmerman.
Family & Friends: Jennifer Ash, Bob Askew, Veronica Bashaw, Amy Bush, Nicole Cadwalader,
Nick Cawley, Martha Cease, Chris Crawford, Gladys Debesis, Susan Diedrickson, Joe Galardi,
Ann Golightly, Jim Grady, John Hauck, Emma Horensky, John Hudock, Bob Hull, Mrs. Hummer,
Audrey Jenkins, Marvin Keck, Mildred Kelly, Dan Kopen, Loughnane Family, Dorothy Loyack,
Alicia Mack, Marilyn & Carl Matthews, Margaret McGiffin, Kitty Nikodeem, Shirley Osborne,
Priscilla Ott, Emil Pinto, Judy Pleiscott, Emily Reep, Walter Roberts, Rodney Samson, Betty Schultz,
Dave Senft, Niki Cheskiewitz Shotwell, Paul Spies, Rev. Peter Jark-Swain, Linda Van Gorder,
Joe Vereb, Eleanor Wentzell, Matt Williams, Carol Wright, Al Wyda, Edith Yohn, Helen Zarychta,
Bobby Zeigler, and Lee (no last name given).
Pray for military personnel: Brian Bayer, Katie Dale, Brian Rigez, Paul Rigez, Paul Hiller,
Andrew Hiller, David Dymond, William B. Phillips, Jerry Price, Phillip Miller, Matt Lipo, Joe Walsh,
Robert Stevens, Adam Wendoloski, Joshua Knobel, David Spangenberg, Lt. Commander 04 Shaun McAndrew,
Cpl. Christopher Avery, Major Cindy Ruckno, Major Kevin Andersen, Captain Frank J. Michael, Jr.,
Daniel Worthington, Michael Tanner, Stanley Brudnicki, Charles Brudnicki, CDR Chris Petrock,
Jason Reed, Ethan Jacobs, Pvt. Kevin Fritzges, Dustin Siperko, John Feher, Aaron Coburn, Justin Thomas,
Specialist Steven J. Martin, Private Esme Molina, Michael Hoffman.
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CONGREGATION COUNCIL NOTES
- Secretary’s report was accepted as presented.
- Treasurer’s report was accepted as presented.
Budget Update: St. Paul's finances as of
*General Fund - does not include Special Appeals or
Mortgage Retirement Phase III Campaign:
1/1/2011 to 12/31/2013: $146,474.33
Total Received to Date: $143,904.00
Loan Obligation Balance: $411,889.68
Monthly Loan Payment: $ 3,530.61
Landscaping: The Cub Scouts removed the geraniums from all the beds; we are looking
at the donation of some lawn care equipment.
Worship & Music: Prayer Book for Armed Services will be ordered and mailed to military
personnel who are members of our congregation; families will be asked to place figures
in the Nativity scenes in the Narthex and outside, and to decorate the Chrismon tree; Advent
devotionals will be prepared by Pastor Grube and three other pastors; community
Thanksgiving service will be held on Sunday, November 24th at 4:00 pm.
Evangelism: Discussion of the progress of the Photo Directory; discussed the results of the survey
taken regarding the walking trail and what group would undertake the care and maintenance of it;
further information regarding Grandparents Raising Grandchildren was presented and discussed;
the gathering of churches at Misericordia, attended by Pastor Grube, was well received and may
be repeated in the spring.
Fellowship: Reception after community Thanksgiving service will be in the Narthex, November 24th.
Social Ministry: Thirteen hypothermia kits were prepared and delivered to St. Vincent DePaul Kitchen
in Wilkes-Barre; menu for Mother Theresa Haven was decided, and the food will be delivered on
Friday, October 18th; three flood buckets were delivered to Lutheran Congregational Services in
Allentown on October 9; 15.5 lbs. of aluminum tabs were delivered to Geisinger offices on
October 23rd (approximately 21,871 tabs).
Parish Nurse Coordinator: Stainless steel shelf has been installed in the kitchen for the first aid kit;
six blood pressure checks were performed October 19/20 in conjunction with the Healing Services
and 26 pamphlets were distributed.
Christian Education: Youth Sunday (November 17th) is staffed except for Assisting Ministers;
Sunday School Christmas program is still in the planning stages.
Old Business: “Conversations that Matter” on October 27th was attended by about 40 people;
discussed ways to find volunteers for light snow removal; discussion of committees’ budgets.
New Business: Congregational Annual Meeting is scheduled for Sunday, January 26th with
February 2nd as a snow date.
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CONGREGATIONAL MEETING SCHEDULED
The Annual Congregational Meeting will be held on Sunday, January 26th, following the
11:00 am worship service. This meeting is a requirement of our constitution and the purpose
is to review the annual report, approve the 2014 budget, and answer any questions/receive
comments by members of the congregation. A covered dish dinner will precede the meeting
which is expected to begin at 1:00 pm. Please bring a covered dish to share; place settings and
beverages will be provided; babysitting for families with young children will also be available.
If you have an item to place on the agenda, please call Bruce Thomas (570-814-9028) or
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Eileen Abel, Carol Fett’s sister who passed away on November 10th.
Jesse Dale, Philip Dale’s nephew who passed away in November.
Inez Ryman, Lois Hardisky’s sister who passed away on November 6th.
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A WORD FROM PASTOR
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,
The four Sundays before Christmas constitute the season of Advent. It is a time to wait
expectantly, watch intently, and prepare intentionally for the coming of our Lord Jesus.
This is a time of expectancy as we look for Jesus’ coming at the end of time to bring to
fulfillment all God’s promises, and his coming in the present in Word and sacrament,
community and charity, and finally, in his coming in the past in the flesh of humanity as a
baby born of Mary. The rest of the world, especially in our North American culture, does
not mark these days of December in the same way, but rather turns most of December into
Christmas, so that by the time the Twelve Days of Christmas really begins on December 25,
the rest of the world is ready to take down the lights, turn off the Christmas carols, and toss
the wrapping paper for another year. The Church celebrates the birth and incarnation
beginning December 25 and continues until Epiphany on January 6. That makes it hard for
Christians who really do want to celebrate the expectancy of Advent, and it is another example
of how counter-cultural the church and the Kingdom of God really is to the world. May you
be strengthened to watch, wait, and prepare for our Lord’s coming this year and not be sucked
into the stuff and expectations of the world’s Christmas that began at Halloween. Turn to the
scriptures and prayer in an intentional way this season. Watch and wait and prepare. Then
rejoice when the angels announce the birth of God’s son and all that the incarnation means for us.
In his presence,
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In Acts 20:35, Paul quotes Jesus as saying, “It is more blessed to give than to receive.” (Interestingly,
that’s the only recorded statement of Jesus that’s not found in one of the four gospels.)
The blessings of giving are profound and lasting. Poet Maya Angelou says, “I have found that among its
other benefits, giving liberates the soul of the giver.”
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The November Dorcas meeting was called to order by Chris Bellezza; Annie Bisher, Dianna
Smith and Lois Gdovin were hostesses for the evening. Annie led devotions with a theme for
Veterans’ Day “Thank You for Serving” and also for “Thanksgiving”. Annie also thanked everyone
for their cards following her recent eye surgery.
The Secretary and Treasurer’s reports were read and approved as presented.
Old Business: Motion made and seconded to elect the 2014 officers as presented by the
nominating committee (Marge McCarty, Geri Williams and Jan Martinchak). 2014 Officers
will be: Chris Bellezza, President
Cynthia Mahalick, Vice President
Carol Fett, Secretary
Helen Carey, Treasurer
Christmas Party will be held December 10th at Irem Temple Country Club beginning at 6:00 pm.
In lieu of exchanging gifts, donations may be made to the “Helping Hand Fund.” All ladies of the
church are welcome to attend; announcement will be placed in bulletin/newsletter. Reservations
are due by December 1st by either signing up in the Narthex or by calling Cynthia Mahalick, Mary
Trexler Walters or Tabitha Walters.
Discussion was held regarding the 2014 Christmas Party and the possibility of having it during the
afternoon hours instead of in the evening; many favorable comments were stated in favor of the
change and it was decided to let the committee next year know that the change is an option.
New Business: Cookies were requested by Fellowship Chairperson, Carol Fett, for the Ecumenical
Thanksgiving Service reception to be held at St. Paul’s on Sunday, November 24th.
Motion was made and seconded for Dorcas to make a donation to the Helping Hand Fund.
Following discussion the motion passed.
Before adjournment it was noted that the January, February, and March meetings will be
held at 1:00 pm.
Carol Fett, Secretary
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The Dorcas Society of St. Paul’s invites all the ladies of the church to attend their annual
Christmas Party at Irem Temple Country Club on Tuesday, December 10th at 6:00 pm.
The cost is $24.00 per person and the buffet menu includes: Caesar Salad, Cole Slaw, Red
Potato Salad, Virginia Baked Ham, Beef Tips, Broiled Salmon, Rice Pilaf, Glazed Carrots,
Cheesecake w/Raspberry Sauce or Key Lime Pie. Reservations are required (by December 1st)
and may be made by signing the sign-up sheet in the Narthex or by calling Cynthia Mahalick
(570-674-5504), Mary Trexler Walters (570-674-4968) or Tabitha Walters (484-619-1460).
In lieu of a gift exchange, donations for the Helping Hand Fund will be accepted.
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CARE AND CONCERN BAKERS NEEDED
The Social Ministry Committee is requesting our St. Paul’s bakers to provide two dozen
cookies (or a batch) to be distributed to shut-ins and other members of our congregation
during the Advent/Christmas season. Please deliver the cookies to the church by December 18th.
If you are willing to help assemble and wrap the cookies, please come to the church kitchen on
Friday, December 20th at 9:00 am. A cookie sign-up sheet is attached to a bright pink clipboard
on the table in the Narthex. Thanks in advance for your care and concern for others!
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WHAT TO GIVE?
To your enemy, forgiveness.
To an opponent, tolerance.
To a friend, your heart.
To a customer, service.
To all men, charity.
To every child, a good example.
To yourself, respect.
-- Oren Arnold
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Rev. Justin Eller, who has served as a missionary in Bolivia, is the new ELCA Global Missions
Regional Director for South America. He coordinates mission accompaniment work and oversees
the Young Adults in Global Missions program across Latin America and the Caribbean, including
in Chile, Bolivia, Peru, Brazil, and Argentina. He and his wife Kari and their young son will be
moving from Bolivia to Buenos Aires, Argentina after the New Year, and recently led presentations
and sessions for the ELCA Latin America Consultation event in Bogota, Colombia, which Pastor Grube
attended. Kari says about the Lutherans in Bolivia, “We see the Bible come alive in hospitality,
like a shawl put on your shoulders when you are cold. It’s a place where God’s glory can be seen
in the perseverance of the women and men who, despite years of discrimination, continue to live a
life that shines the light of Christ.” Thank you for your support of ELCA Global Missions and Justin
and Kari’s important ministry.
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We are privileged to enjoy the reflections of a variety of church leaders in our area in our Advent
season Prayer Devotional booklets this year. This year, rather than Pastor Grube writing the entire
devotional booklet as in recent years, he has been joined by Pastor Janell Wigen of Good Shepherd
and St. John churches in Wilkes-Barre, Pastor Paul Metzloff of Holy Trinity, Kingston, and Marty
Everhart, SALM, of St. Luke Reformation, Noxen as writers of the devotions. And those four additional
congregations have each received copies of the same booklets, so that Lutherans from across our
Wyoming Valley and Back Mountain communities are sharing in the same Advent season devotional
resource. As you watch, wait, and prepare this Advent with scripture, prayer, and devotion, remember
these brothers and sisters in Christ in your prayers, too.
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SERVICES FOR CHRISTMAS
As is our tradition, we will celebrate the Nativity of Our Lord with two services on Christmas Eve and
a service of Lessons and Carols on the following Sunday. The early service at 7:00 pm on December 24
will be especially oriented toward families and children. Both the early service and the late service at
10:00 pm will include Holy Communion and a service of candlelighting. The First Sunday of Christmas,
December 29, will feature a service of Lessons and Carols for Christmas according to our regular two-service
schedule at 8:30 and 11 am. These services, too, will include Holy Communion. Invite your visitors,
friends and neighbors to join you in celebrating the birth of the Savior!
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ELCA GOOD GIFTS
This Christmas, give a gift that isn’t easy to wrap!
We can help…ELCA has a program called “GOOD GIFTS”. For varied monetary gifts you can
support people around the world. For $10.00 you can buy chicks that will grow, lay eggs to use or
sell and keep producing for a family in need. Other examples include:
Buy a pig for $30.00
Buy a duck for $20.00
Buy mosquito netting for $10 to $250
Help fight hunger with a goat! The gift of a goat ($50) will provide a family living in poverty
with milk to drink, food to eat, and fertilizer for crops.
These gifts are given to honor your loved ones on a special occasion. You may pick up a catalog
(on the Narthex table) for your own use or fill out one of the forms provided and we will assist in
ordering your gift. A gift acknowledgement card will be sent to the recipient.
If you have any questions, please contact Alice Baer (570-333-5407) or email her at email@example.com.
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PRAYER BOOK FOR THE ARMED SERVICES
The Evangelical Lutheran Church in America recently published a Prayer Book for the Armed
Services. This pocket-sized companion is ideal for those in the military, family and friends of those
in active service, and veterans. Included in this book are: morning and evening prayer for individual
use; prayers for many service-related circumstances, including preparation for missions, confronting
crises, grieving fallen companions, life circumstances during deployment; and the words to 65 hymns
including national songs and more.
St. Paul’s would like to send a Prayer Book for the Armed Services to all our members who are
currently serving in the military, but we need your help. Please inform the church office (570-675-3859)
of the names and addresses of your family members who are in the service and we will mail the Prayer
Book directly to them. Thank you for participating in this project!
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COOKIE BAKERS ARE NEEDED...
...for students at Penn State Wilkes-Barre Campus during finals week (St. Paul’s will be designated
as a “Cookie Church”)! If you are willing to provide a dozen (or more) homemade cookies, please sign
the sign-up sheet on the table in the Narthex. Cookies for Penn State should be brought to church
Sunday, December 8th by 11:00 am and placed on the designated “cookie table” in the front foyer.
If you have any questions, please contact Carol Fett at 570-675-3144 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you for your student support!
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“I have a better Caretaker than you and all the angels. He it is who lies in a manger, but at the same
time sits at the right hand of God, the almighty Father. Therefore be at rest.”
-- Martin Luther
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HAS YOUR ADDRESS, phone number and/or email address changed? A new church phone
directory will be printed very soon. While you’re thinking of it, please notify the church office
(570-675-3859 or email@example.com) if any changes have been made to your household.
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A DIFFERENT PLACE TO SHOP
The 19th Annual Alternative Christmas Craft Fair - Saturday, December 7th
from 10:00 am to 3:00 pm at First Presbyterian Church, 97 S. Franklin St., Wilkes-Barre. This Fair
features international gifts, local crafts and lunch, and a wonderful opportunity to spend time together
making wreaths and crafts with the children. For more information, contact Pam at 570-284-2478.
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FOOD PANTRY UPDATE
The Pantry is in need of the following types of items: tuna, cranberry sauce, stuffing mix, cake mixes
and icings, mustard and ketchup, canned fruit, canned potatoes, puddings of all types, fruit juices,
dry soup, and crackers. These items represent an ongoing need at the pantry. Please remember to
check the “use by” dates. You may place your donation in the shopping cart in the hallway just outside
of the Social Hall.
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PLAY GROUP FORMING
Join us for a casual and fun play group held at the Lehman-Idetown United Methodist Church. Each
week there will be music, snacks, and an activity for the children. This is a free service to the community.
Bring your children ages birth to five years on Thursday mornings from 10:00 to 11:30 am. Please call
570-262-0382 for more information.
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2014 OFFERING ENVELOPES
Offering envelopes for the new year will be ready for you to pick up in the Narthex starting the
weekend of November 20/December 1. Your help in taking your envelopes (or other family members’)
will be greatly appreciated and will help us save on postage. Please, if at all possible, do not use
scotch tape to seal the envelopes, and be sure to use your envelopes for proper financial credit
(loose checks in the offering plate may not be credited to your envelope number). If you cannot
find your offering box or if you would like to begin using envelopes, please contact Carol Fett at
570-675-3144 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Since this newsletter is a combined December/January issue we’d like to remind you now
that if you wish your church financial statement to include all of your 2013 contributions, please
note the following IRS regulations:
For tax purposes, you must be sure your contributions are received no later than December 31st.
After that date, 2013 contributions received by St. Paul’s in 2014 may be credited to
your 2013 financial statement if they are MAILED AND POSTMARKED IN 2013.
The Internal Revenue Service also states: “Taxpayers must receive their financial statement
acknowledgments BEFORE the date he/she files a tax return. If the taxpayer does not have
the acknowledgment by then, the taxpayer cannot claim a charitable deduction.”
General Fund and Mortgage Retirement contribution statements will be mailed early in
January. Please review your statement quickly and refer any and all questions directly to
Ruth Ide or Carol Fett since all 2013 envelopes will be disposed of after six months.
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ST. PAUL’S CORRECT MAILING ADDRESS
Please be sure to use our correct mailing address when sending any correspondence to the church:
St. Paul’s Lutheran Church
PO Box 802
Dallas, PA 18612
If the correspondence is of a financial nature -- Memorial Gift, Special Appeal Envelope, Offering
Envelope, &c. -- please add “Carol Fett, Treasurer” to the address. Your help will be greatly appreciated.
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Wow, the storms seem to be getting more intense! As my prayers go out to the people of the
Philippines and central United States, I keep remembering “be prepared for the little ones and then
you’re ready for the big ones” as I used to teach as a former employee of the Pennsylvania Department
of Health. Are you ready for three days without electricity due to, say, a severe ice storm or blizzard
and you can’t get out of your house? Help from the government, whether local, state or federal
takes time to get the basic supplies to you. Please check out these web sites for the lists of what
you should have on hand and easily accessible:
www.ReadyPA.org or Google PA Department of Health, on the left-hand side click on the
gray box “Public Health Preparedness.” There you will find links to many topics on the subject.
(Retrieved online 11/20/2013)
And don’t forget the hand sanitizer if water isn’t readily available.
May you and yours have a blessed peaceful Christmas and a safe and healthy New Year!
In Love and Service,
Gail Ide, BSN RN Parish Nurse Coordinator
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NEW 2014 FLOWER & BULLETIN CHARTS
The 2014 sign-up charts for Altar flowers and bulletin sponsors have been posted on the table
in the Narthex. You are encouraged to sign them with your choice of a weekend to sponsor
flowers in memory or honor of loved ones, or for some special occasion in your life; we ask
that you take the flowers following the last service. Flowers are $25.00 per Sunday, payable
to Dorcas; Bulletins are $12.00, payable to St. Paul’s. Checks may be placed directly in the
offering plate or placed in the treasurer’s mailbox. FLOWER and BULLETIN CHARTS are
clearly marked; please be sure you are signing the correct one.
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NOVEMBER BLOOD DRIVES
The Wyoming Valley Chapter of the American Red Cross announces the following Back
Mountain blood drive locations for the month of December:
Misericordia University (Insalaco Center)
Tuesday, December 3rd *
from 11:30 am to 4:30 pm
Dallas American Legion (Memorial Highway)
Tuesday, December 17th *
from 1:00 to 6:00 pm
* = DRC (Double Red Cell) Donation available
The Red Cross strongly suggests that appointments be made by calling 1-800-REDCROSS
(1-800-733-2767) due to possible changes in donation site locations and times. Also, the January
schedule was not available at the time of this printing; please contact the Red Cross for dates
What a gift to those in need! If you are at least 17 years of age (16 with parental permission)
and in good health, you can help to save a life by donating blood. People in your neighborhood,
church, and community are in need -- people with cancer, or receiving other therapies, or who
have had an unfortunate accident. Your prayerful consideration is requested! Please contact
the Red Cross at 570-823-7161 for more information.
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WINTER CAMP NEWS
Bear Creek Camp’s Winter Camp has been transformed into “Connect”!
What is Connect?
A Winter Retreat at Bear Creek Camp where you come and Connect with God and
Connect with friends!
When is Connect?
7th-12th Grade Weekend -- January 17-19
4th-8th Grade Weekend -- March 14-16
The entire weekend is only $110!
For more information or to register, visit www.bearcreekcamp.org.
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MAIL FOR THE HOLIDAYS
Please feel free to send as many pieces of correspondence for the military as you desire to the
Holiday Mail for Heroes
PO Box 5456
Capitol Heights, MD 20791-5456
The deadline for having cards to the PO Box is Friday, December 6th. Holiday cards received
after this date cannot be guaranteed delivery.
Please visit www.redcross.org/support/get-involved/holiday-mail-for-heroes for more
information, or the Walter Reed Facebook page at the following link:
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Each Christmas, a family celebrated by holding a birthday party for Jesus. To remind themselves
of Jesus’ presence, they placed a chair of honor for him at their dinner table.
The highlight of the party was singing “Happy Birthday” to Jesus and then blowing out the candles
on a special cake.
One Christmas, a visitor asked the family’s 5-year-old daughter, “Did you get everything you
wanted for Christmas?”
The girl paused and then answered, “No! It’s not my birthday!”
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IN OUR MAILBAG
On behalf of my family I would like to thank all of you for your beautiful cards,
delicious food, phone calls, and prayers.
Losing my sister so unexpectedly was such a shock. Having the support of our
wonderful church family has been such a blessing.
We all thank you from the bottom of our hearts for your love and caring.
God bless you all! Love,
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Dear Members of St. Paul’s,
Carol and I want to take this opportunity to thank you for all your cards, phone calls, and
especially your prayers following my surgery in September and the subsequent complications.
Special thanks are also given to Gail Ide and Judy Loeffler, members of our Health Ministry
Team, for their support and guidance when needed most. We feel blessed to be a part of such
a wonderful and caring congregation.
Yours in Christ,
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I knew I had many friends here at St. Paul’s and this proved true during the time of my eye
surgery and recovery! So many prayers, cards, and phone calls were and are appreciated. It
boosts me up when I hear from each of you. Thank you too, for the beautiful prayer shawl to
comfort me and keep me warm. I will cherish it for a long time.
Love to all and God bless you all!
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To the Members of St. Paul’s:
My family and I would like to thank you for all your cards, prayers, and now the expressions
of sympathy and memorial donations, during the sudden illness and death of my sister, Eileen Abel,
in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Eileen visited St. Paul’s several times and was so impressed with our
church and with the friendliness of our congregation. There are no words to express how we feel
and how much your support means to us at this time.
In Christian Love and Peace,
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Thank you for all your cards and prayers, and especially thank you for the generous gifts
to our church.
Ron and July Loeffler
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Dear Church Family Members:
Please accept our deepest appreciation for your kind expressions of concern and sympathy.
Your prayers and support throughout my Mother’s illness and recent passing have been a great
source of strength and comfort.
We are truly blessed to be a part of such a loving Congregation.
With heartfelt thanks,
Connie and Jeff Wilt
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To my church family,
“Thanks” cannot describe the gratitude I feel to all of you for remembering me with cards
and calls as I recovered from my recent car accident. I must add special thanks to Carol Fett
for standing in the rain to wait with me for the ambulance to arrive. I am truly blessed to have all of you.
In Christ’s love,
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“Life is like a camera: Focus on what’s important, capture the good times, develop from the
negatives, and if things don’t work out, take another shot.”
-- Source unknown
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