Good newsjan2014


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Published monthly, "The Good News" serves as a way to connect with our congregation and the greater Los Angles community. All are welcome, so please feel free to download a copy of January's "Good News!" Go to and for more inf.o

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Good newsjan2014

  1. 1. First United Methodist Church of North Hollywood GOOD NEWS JANUARY 2014 e-mail: IN THIS ISSUE: • Heifer Living Market • Letter From Our Bishop • UMW General Luncheon • Operation Gratitude GOOD NEWS is published monthly by First United Methodist Church of North Hollywood, California 91601 Phone (818) 763-8231 Minerva Carcaño Bishop Rev. Dr. Cedrick Bridgeforth District Superintendent Dr. Joey K. McDonald Pastor Congregation Ministers Jeff Thomas Director of Music Roger Eshleman Organist Nylean Rapinac Administrator Patty Kelsey Director, Program Ministries Jessica Renslow Director, Outreach Ministries A NOTE FROM PASTOR JOEY I wrote this note just four days before Christmas.  How does one write about the new year when the image of Christmas looms large?  You know the feeling.  Too many things to do and not enough time to do them.  Gifts to buys, cards and letters (even sermons to write, worship to do...not to mention the hospital calls.)  The sense of being pressed between two walls moving toward you and working frantically to get all that needs to be done completed. All too often our experience is to accomplish what we can between the rush and rancor of each day.  While urgency is helpful, even essential to effective living, to work and live under undue pressure or place it on those around us is not simply is not good theology. Time and again in the ministry of Jesus we see him pressed to God’s work and yet available to the people around him, and his work stands unequaled in comparison to any we know.  However, he did more than model mission and ministry; he gave us a pattern for spiritual life which if followed can be strong and durable. The Bible records that Jesus prayed, taught, healed, fed and worked with people; but he took time to draw apart and be with God alone.  He took meals with friends and relaxed, even laughed along the way. Those of us rooted in the Protestant tradition get the work ethic of Jesus.  We strive to model our lives by the examples he gave, however, the idea that he has a play ethic either insults or confuses us.  Yet, the record would seem to indicate he had a lively sense of humor.   The pitched conversations he had with those in authority and his insistence on children being allowed in his presence are but two clear indications. To follow Jesus is our calling but not just half way.  How about in this new year taking time to do God’s work, but also taking time to do God’s play as well.  Part of the mission we have as believers is to enjoy the time we are given in this world in which we live and each other.  In the meantime, we have things to do, places to be, people to meet and pressures to live up to.  Nobody said a theology of play was easy.  To a new year filled with love and laughter!  Amen. Your Friend and Pastor, Joey
  2. 2. COME AND WORSHIP The following Bible passages will be the basis for the messages in January Please take time each week to read the selected passages. January 5 We Just Heard This Story January 12 Let It Be So January 19 January 26 Matthew 2:1-12 Matthew 3:13-17 John 1:29-42 United Methodist Women Sunday TBD The Teachable Spirit HIGHLIGHTS OF WORSHIP December 1st - Today was the grand opening of our 15th Annual Tree Lot! The Sanctuary was beautifully decorated with wreaths on this First Sunday of Advent. Lisa Cheby, Jessie Renslow and Tara Varilek started off our tradition of lighting the Advent Candle of Hope. Pastor Joey’s sermon, “Greenwich Kind Time,” was based on Romans 13:11-14. December 8th - On this Second Sunday of Advent our United Methodist Women lit the Candle of Peace. The Synchronicity Handbells performed “Joy and Elation.” The Time With Children was led by Deanne Cox who shared a message on God wanting us to touch each other’s lives. Today’s lectionary scripture was Romans 15:4-13 and Pastor Joey’s message was titled, “Why We Have Hope.” December 14th - This evening we experienced our 2nd Annual Christmas Organ Concert featuring Roger Eshleman. Roger shared selections from LeBegue, Bach, and Yon, as well as favorites like Caroling, Caroling and Sleigh Ride. Roger also took requests and everyone enjoyed singing along to Christmas Carols. December 15th - This morning we all stared in wonder at our gorgeous poinsettia tree which graced the chancel. The Nyaforh Family and the Galvis-Shepard Family shared in the lighting of our Advent Candle of Love. Our darling Sunday School children treated the congregation to a beautiful Christmas Pageant during worship service. Thanks to Lynne Hutton, all of the parents and volunteers and all of the children who participated. It was heart-warming to see all the kids portray the Christmas Story. Pastor Joey shared a message on Matthew 11:2-11 in a sermon titled, “On Becoming The Real Deal.” December 22nd - The Lake Family shared in the lighting of the Advent Candle of Joy this morning. Special music was shared today by Shaun Vieten, Francis Nyaforh and Norman Kelsey. Jeff Thomas and Gary Solt performed “Blue Christmas.” We also “Walked to the Manger” this morning and The Fetterman’s were the Holy Family. Pastor Joey’s message based on Isaiah 7:10-16 was called, “Signs and Wonders.” December 24th - Both 7:00 PM and 9:30 PM sermons were based on Luke 2:1-20. Special music was enjoyed by The Acosta Family, Roger Eshleman, Jeff Thomas, Gary Solt, EmmaThomas, Abigail Thomas and our wonderful choir. Ken and Kathi Ellis shared in the lighting of the Christ Candle during 7:00 PM worship. Children’s Time was led by Patty Kelsey. December 29th - On the First Sunday After Christmas Day, we were treated to a solo by Charles Minetree called “Christmas Night.” Pastor Joey shared a message on Matthew 2:13-23.
  3. 3. CONGRATULATIONS TO OUR VOLUNTEERS FOR A SUCCESSFUL TREE LOT SEASON! 665 trees sold! It is with great pride and gratitude that we celebrate the success of our 15th Annual Tree Lot with all of you! The Christmas Season was made brighter due to the dedication and hard work of our volunteers. Know that you are ambassadors of faith, hope, and love in our community and communities around the world! Special thanks go out to the following folks: Ken Ellis, Margaret & Jim Doggett, Muffett Brinkman, and Tara Varilek, If you cooked a meal, put together a tree stand, greeted, carried a tree, used a chainsaw, worked as a cashier, bought a tree or told your family, friends and neighbors to purchase a tree...we thank you from the bottom of our hearts! Also, many thanks to those volunteers who decorated the Sanctuary, Boyer Chapel & Lounge! Anita McChesney, Pam Lippert, Lisa Cheby, Jodi Smith, and Kim Miller. A shout out to Pastor Joey, Ken Ellis, & Norman Kelsey for putting up the Poinsettia Tree.
  4. 4. What’s Happening in January? Saturday, January 4th - Missions Team planning meeting 10:00 AM - 12:30 PM in the Lounge. Wednesday, January 8th- UMW Planning Meeting. Lo-Fe-Lo Room. 9:30 AM - 11:30 AM. Wednesday, January 8th - UMW General Luncheon. 12:00 PM in the Lo-Fe-Lo Room. Birthday celebration and pledge service. $3.00 donation includes lunch. Sunday, January 12th - Mission Sunday canned food collection. Proteins are requested. Please also bring a few extra dollars designated for Monday, January 13th - Martha Circle meets in Hand in Hand at 11:00 AM. Tuesday, January 14th - All-Church Movie Night in the Lounge. 6:45 - Dinner & 7:15 - Movie. Wednesday, January 15th - Ruth Circle 7:30 PM at the home of Willa Koenigsaecker. Monday, January 20thTabitha Fellowship 10:30 AM in Hand in Hand. Wednesday, January 22nd - UMW Boutique Workshop at the home of Kathi Ellis. 9:30 AM. Sunday, January 26th - UMW Sunday. Worship this morning will be led by the women of our congregation. Monday, January 27th - Lifeline Screenings in the Social Hall. 9:00 AM - 4:00 PM. Pre-register. Tuesday, January 28th - United Methodist Men meet at the Hill Street Cafe. 7:30 PM. MEETING WITH THE BISHOP GENERAL LUNCHEON Wednesday, January 8th 12:00 PM Lo-Fe-Lo Room Sunday, January 12th 3:00 PM - 6:00 PM Pasadena First UMC 500 E. Colorado Blvd. Pasadena, 91101 Bishop Carcaño will be sharing about the journey that led her to $3 Donation invite Frank Schaefer to the Includes lunch and program. California-Pacific Annual Conference, and will provide a safe Monthly Birthdays Acknowledged & space for faith-filled sharing of our thoughts, prayers, concerns and ideas Celebrated Today! on what we are called to do if the Book of Discipline of The United Methodist Church and the Gospel of Jesus Christ are in conflict. Tuesday, January 14th Lounge 6:45 PM - Light Dinner 7:15 PM - Movie PITCH PERFECT Beca, a freshman at Barden University, is cajoled into joining The Bellas, her school’s all-girls singing group. Injecting some much needed energy into their Please RSVP ASAP to Cal-Pac Office repertoire, The Bellas take on their male rivals in a campus competition.
  5. 5. Many thanks to Rachel Mottaz for setting up the Heifer Living Gift Market during the month of December! This event sold food-and incomeproducing animals like goats, bees, chicks and heifers. The animals go to resource-poor families working to improve their lives. The Living Gift Market was such a clever solution to buying gifts for those who already have everything and gave our congregation the opportunity to get out of the gift-giving rut of a commercialized Christmas and helped us to focus on the true meaning of the Advent Season. From the beautiful cards we received to the sweet pins that represented specific animals, the Heifer Living Gift Market made gift giving special. The cards and pins were a wonderful way to tell family and friends about the gift that was purchased in their honor. The goal was to raise $1,500.00 but we exceeded the goal raising over $2,000.00! Thanks to all who supported our mission work to end hunger and poverty! Merry Christmas blessings and a big thank you from Angels Haven Orphanage in Thailand. Our Missionaries, Gary & Cindy Moon, with their Angels. In the past 12 months 153,513 Care Packages were assembled and shipped as follows: 59,972 Deployed Troops Care Packages   1,251 Military Family Care Packages 50,597 Veterans Care Packages    1,003 Wounded Warrior Care Packages 22,437 Battalion Buddy Packages     691 Care Giver Care Packages 14,646 Halloween Candy Care Packages     486 First Responder Care Packages  2,430 Disaster Relief Supplies Packages The requests for these care packages continue to pour in. While the contents of the packages are donated and all of the work is done by volunteers, it costs $15 to ship each package. If you want to help fulfill these package requests, you can donate by mail. Simply send a check made payable and addressed to: Operation Gratitude 1644 Refugio Rd., Encino 91436. With your generosity, Operation Gratitude will be able to expand their efforts to meet the evolving needs of the military community and ensure that all service members, past and present, hear the words: "Thank you for your service."
  6. 6. A LETTER FROM THE BISHOP Brothers and Sisters, At our annual conference session earlier this year we celebrated the visionary leadership of Bishop Gerald Kennedy who in 1963 was invited to come to the West 8 Methodist pastors from Mississippi who had been condemned and ostracized by Methodists and others for standing against racial discrimination. Among the 8 who came from Mississippi to become a part of the ministry in what is now the CaliforniaPacific Conference were the Rev. Inman Moore and the Rev. Ed McRae. We rejoiced when these two surviving pastors stood among us this past June and shared with us a word of deep witness of what it meant to be supported and welcomed. I want you to know that on this day following in the footsteps of Bishop Kennedy and with the support of his bishop, Bishop Peggy Johnson, I invited the Rev. Frank Schaefer to come and join us in ministry in the California-Pacific Conference. At this moment Rev. Schaefer and I have agreed that he will enter into a time of prayer and discernment with his wife Brigitte and their family about whether God is calling him to life and ministry in our conference. While I recognize that our brother Frank has been defrocked by those in authority in his conference, I believe that those who have acted in such a way have done so in obedience to the Book of Discipline of The United Methodist Church, an imperfect book of human law that violates the very spirit of Jesus the Christ who taught us through word and deed that all God’s children are of sacred worth and welcomed into the embrace of God’s grace. I believe that the time has come for we United Methodists to stand on the side of Jesus and declare in every good way that the United Methodist Church is wrong in its position on homosexuality, wrong in its exclusion of our LGBTQ brothers and sisters, and wrong in its incessant demand to determine through political processes who can be fully members of the body of Christ. Frank Schaefer chose to stand with Jesus as he extended love and care to his gay son and his partner. We should stand with him and others who show such courage and faithfulness. At our 2013 annual conference session you the lay and clergy members of the California-Pacific Conference determined that you would be biblically obedient, excluding no one from our care or ministry, and committing to work to eliminate any barriers that would prohibit anyone from being included in our covenantal life together or our witness to Christ Jesus. You declared that you were acting out of the belief that God’s grace and love are available to all persons. This decision of the conference was challenged. As the presiding officer I had the responsibility of issuing a ruling of law in response to the challenge. I ruled that the conference had the right to express the hope of many in The United Methodist Church that the day will come when inclusion and justice will be extended to all God’s people. I further ruled that the conference had the right to give witness to the belief that The United Methodist Church is in error when it states that homosexuality is incompatible with Christian teaching. My ruling of law was upheld by the Judicial Council of our denomination. In inviting Frank Schaefer to come and join us in ministry and witness, I am choosing to stand with you and to lead us in being biblically obedient. I acknowledge that I do not have the authority to restore the ministerial credentials that Frank Schaefer has lost. Only a board of ordained ministry can recommend such a reinstatement of credentials, and only the ordained clergy of an annual conference can determine whether a person will be credentialed for ordained ministry. What I can do, however, is invite and welcome others to love and serve Christ Jesus among us, accompany those who choose to be faithful, and exhort us all to be biblically obedient. This I will do for as long as God gives me breath. Your Sister in Christ, Bishop Minerva G. Carcaño (12/20/13)
  7. 7. January 1 January 3 January 4 January 5 January 6 January 6 January 8 January 8 Deborah Byon Tyler Smith Molly Moffatt Mary Sanders Lloyd Dent Anthony Duffy Arden Baker Paul Ellis January 9 January 9 January 10 January 11 January 11 January 16 January 24 January 24 January 30 Dexter Moffatt Siobhan Paull Pam Orchard Abbey Thomas Emma Thomas Jake Orchard Dennis Parnell Steve Watts Phillip Mottaz Wishing you a year filled with blessings! Love, Your Church Family Joe Orchard was hospitalized for a tumor and is in ICU. His daughter-in-law, Pam, fainted and was also hospitalized. Please lift up the Orchard family during this time. Anna Marie Finstad is recovering from a fall that broke her hip and hip surgery. Shirley Pratt injured her ankle. Ron Sullivan is still in need of prayers of recovery following his liver transplant. Tracy Ritter, completed radiation treatment and gamma knife surgery for her adenoid cystic carcinoma at the University of Washington. She made it home to open presents with her three children during Christmas time and is in recovery mode. Marilyn Fabre is still in recovery for her broken hip and femur. Norman Kelsey’s Father, Herb, went to the hospital with health concerns on Christmas Day. Laura Kennedy was diagnosed with cancer that has metastasized.
  8. 8. Reflections ! Joey K. "Donald At year’s end, it is not unusual to think back and ask ourselves what we have made with the time in the year past.   Even to ask if we have been faithful to the claim and call of God upon our lives. The prospect of receiving spiritual direction, is a dicey proposition at best.  Though the Bible is replete with such stories, literally from Abraham and Sarah in Genesis to John of Patmos in the book of Revelation, God speaks to people.  To the Prophets.  To Jesus and the Disciples.  To common and uncommon people alike.  God speaks, setting the course of lives and nations.  However, when we latter day sinners say God has spoken to us, or has called us to go or do this or that, friends and family look at us askance. In Matthew 2:13-23, Joseph is told to take the infant Jesus and flee to Egypt that he might be protected from the hand of King Herod.  After Herod dies, Joseph is told to return to Israel and settle in Nazareth.  Scholars tell us Matthew is using a literary devise known as proof-texting, in order to fulfill the words of the prophet Isaiah.   Yet, we would like to think God would be that specific in guiding and directing the lives of believers.  For people of faith it seems reasonable to hope that God will point the way and nudge us along.  The difficulty is not so much with direction as with the follow through. Remember, the Apostle Paul began his religious career persecuting followers of Jesus only to be converted by Christ on the road to Damascus.  Even after conversion Paul was not without his doubt.  In Romans 7:15, “In fact I don’t understand why I act the way I do.  I don’t do what I know is right.  I do the things I hate.  Although I don’t do what I know is right, I agree that the Law is good.  So I am not the one doing these evil things.  The sin that lives in me is what does them.”  I believe Paul completes this thought in Philippians 3:12-14, “I have not yet reached my goal, and I am not perfect.  But Christ has taken hold of me.  So I keep on running and struggling to take hold of the prize.  My friends, I don’t feel that I have already arrived.  But I forget what is behind.  And I struggle for what is ahead.  I run toward the goal, so that I can win the prize of being called by heaven.” For me, Paul’s words are a reminder that God never quits on us and is always ready to give direction.   We don’t need a map or a compass, and God doesn’t need a telegraph, telephone, telefax, or e-mail to communicate with us.  We do need to ramp up our hearts and plug in our souls though. Reflections are part of the weekly bulletin inserts for worship. This writing is originally from December 30, 2001. Dr. McDonald’s message, “You Can’t Find It With A Compass” was based on Matthew 2:13-23
  9. 9. OPPORTUNITIES FOR WORSHIP January January 5 12 Epiphany Sunday. Second Sunday After Christmas. White or Gold. Isa 60:1-6; Ps. 72:1-7, 10-14 or (UMH 795); Eph. 3:1-12; Matt 2:1-12 January 19 Second Sunday After the Epiphany. Human Relations Day. Green. Isa. 49:1-7; Ps. 40:1-11 or (UMH 774); 1 Cor. 1:1-9; John 1:29-42 January 26 Third Sunday After the Epiphany. Green. Isa. 9:1-4; Ps. 27 or (UMH 758); 1 Cor. 1:10-18; Matt. 4:12-23 Baptism of the Lord. First Sunday After the Epiphany. White or Gold. Isa. 42:1-9; Ps. 29 or (UMH 761) Acts 10:34-43; Matt. 3:13-17 Sunday Worship Services at 10:30 AM in the Main Sanctuary Adult Sunday School meets at 9:15 AM in the Hand in Hand room Children’s Sunday School meets at 10:30 AM in the Community Room/Nursery Children’s Message every second & third Sunday of the month during 10:30 worship service Communion will be celebrated on January 5th at 8:15 AM and 10:30 AM worship services. 8:15 AM Worship Services in Boyer Chapel January 5 - Pastor Joey January 12 - Norman Kelsey January 19 - Patty Kelsey January 26 - Sandra Smith Please have your articles for the Good News to the church office by January 17th for the February 2014 publication or email them to If you no longer wish to receive this publication, please contact the church office or return this address label noting that we are to discontinue sending it. Thank you. POSTMASTER - Please send changes of address to: First United Methodist Church of North Hollywood 4832 Tujunga Avenue, North Hollywood, CA 91601