Local churches planning Christmas activities, services
Sweetwater Community Lighthouse:Aglow International Sweetwater Community Lighthouse will have their Christmas Party on Tuesday, Dec. 10, at 7 p.m. at the Holiday Inn Express. We will have a time of worship, fellowship and singing. Everyone is invited to come and bring a friend. For more information, call 766-2245 or 338-8924.Broadway Baptist Church:Over 700 years before the birth of Christ Isaiah wrote: “For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given, and the government shall be upon His shoulder: and His name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, the everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace.” (Isaiah 9:6) As Isaiah dipped his pen in golden glory he tells us of the darling Son of God that is to be born of a virgin and bring salvation to all men.Many have proclaimed certain days as the “greatest day on earth”. Some believe it to be the day the world wars ended. Some believe it to be the day man stepped on the moon, but I personally believe it was the day Jesus was born. It was the day God Himself stepped out of heaven and came to earth. He left the ivory palaces and came into this world of woe to bring to all men everywhere a message of Peace, Hope and Joy.Come be with us at Broadway Baptist where we are celebrating a SIMPLE CHRISTMAS, which brings Hope, Peace and Joy.We at Broadway Baptist Church would also like to invite you to some special events coming up. The children are performing a short Christmas program on Dec. 15, during the morning service at 10:50 a.m. Our Adult Choir is performing the Cantata: “There Is a Bethlehem” on Dec. 22, during the morning service. We also will have a Christmas Eve service on Tuesday, Dec. 24, at 7 p.m. You are welcomed to join us in the celebration of our Lord’s birth.If you don’t have a church home, we would love to have you worship with us at Broadway Baptist Church where God is changing homes one heart at a time. Our Life Groups, which is for all ages, starts at 10 a.m. Our morning service is at 10:50 a.m. and our evening service begins at 6 p.m. Come and let us be a blessing to you as we worship the Lord together.Emmanuel Fellowship Church:We invite you to join us this Sunday at Emmanuel Fellowship Church. Our Sunday morning services are at 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. Both morning services are filled with the same warm fellowship, dynamic worship and life-giving messages, as well as top-notch children’s ministry and nursery care for children up to fifth grade. This week, we will launch our December sermon series entitled “Christmas Unwrapped.” Come prepare your heart for the celebration of Jesus’ birth as we remember what’s important about this holiday season. Lifegroups at EFC are available throughout the week for small group Bible study, worship, and prayer. For more information about the many Lifegroup options that are available, please log on to our church website at www.efcsweetwater.com. EFC’s Wednesday evening children’s ministry is in full-swing, with children ages six months through fifth grade exploring what living life with Jesus really looks like! They meet Wednesdays from 6:45-8:30 p.m. and are loving their time together in the “Faith Factory!” Right now, they are hard at work on our Christmas pageant, and we look forward to them sharing with us on Dec. 15!The Salvage Yard youth ministry, for grades 6-12, meets Wednesdays at 6:45 p.m. for their worship service and again on Sundays at 6 p.m. for small group discipleship. The Salvage Yard is also hosting a “Kids’ Night Out” this Saturday, Dec. 7, from 6-10 p.m. Parents, get your Christmas shopping done while your children, ages four years through fifth grade, enjoy dinner, crafts, games and a movie in a warm, safe environment! Cost is $15 per child, and kids can be registered online at www.efcsweetwater or by calling the church offices at 236-9200.We also invite you to step into The Growth Central Bookstore when you visit EFC. It’s stocked with Bibles, study aids, devotionals, marriage and parenting resources, worship music, inspirational gifts, original art, and fiction books — there’s something for everyone. The bookstore is open between Sunday morning services, from 10:30-11 a.m. and 12:30-1 p.m. For more information about the ministry of EFC, log onto the church website at www.efcsweetwater.com.First Baptist Church:First Baptist Church invites you and your family to join us on this Sunday, Dec. 8, for Bible study, beginning at 9:15 a.m. for all ages, followed by the Sunday morning service, which begins at 10:30 a.m. First Baptist Church is located at 213 East Third Street, next door to the Post Office. We warmly greet you. Your presence will enhance our worship experience and our fellowship together.Koinonia coffee is held at The Welcome Center before Bible study each Sunday morning. Coffee is the perfect complement to meeting old friends and new. It is an invitation to sit and talk for a while, to share stories, to get to know one another better. You are invited to join friends each Sunday morning as we all share a warm cup of Koinonia Coffee.The Missions item to be collected for the month of December is Macaroni and Cheese. Each month we have collected different items which are being used to restock our pantry which is to be used as a resource for needy families.Many events are planned during the month of December. If you have a class party planned, please notify the church office so that it can be placed on the church calendar and bulletin.Advent devotional guides are available in the Sanctuary foyer. Please take one as part of your Advent devotionals.Angel Tree is a ministry that provides gifts for children who have a parent who has been incarcerated. Please take a tag, purchase the items on the tag and return the gift to the church by Sunday, Dec. 15.You can purchase a Christmas Poinsettia “In Honor Of” or “In Memory Of” to help decorate the Church for Advent services. McVey Nursery has donated the Poinsettias and all proceeds will go to the youth fund. Each Poinsettia is $10 and can be picked up after the Christmas Eve service. To purchase, please call the church office.The worship choir will be presenting “Christ Was Born for This,” in the Dec. 8, morning worship service. Our prayer is that, as the choir leads in worship, you will feel free not only to join in singing, but that you will be touched afresh and anew with the wonder of God’s great love that continues to give.Kid X continues on Wednesday nights at 6 p.m. Kid X is a fun and exciting way for Kindergarten up to sixth grade to learn about Jesus. Presently, the children who are in Kid X are preparing for a children’s Christmas musical to be presented on Dec. 15! Plan now to be here Dec. 15, as our children present “The Incredible Gigantic, Humongous Veggie Tales Christmas Show” in the morning worship celebration. You will be blessed!The youth will be going to Six Flags Dec. 14. Tickets are $35 and the bus will leave at 10 a.m. Please call the church office to reserve a spot.The remaining schedule for December is as follows: Dec. 8 will be the Adult Christmas Musical; Dec. 15 will be the Children’s Christmas Musical and Dec. 24 will be the Christmas Eve service. Please join us as we celebrate the birth of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ! We want everyone to enjoy this wonderful time of the year as we reminisce and fellowship together. We will celebrate the birth of Jesus, the greatest gift ever to walk this planet. We will celebrate in unity with hope, love, joy and peace for in our Lord is unfailing love and full redemption!For in depth information on First Baptist Church Sweetwater, find us on Facebook or at www.fbcsweetwater.org.First Presbyterian Church:First Presbyterian Church of Sweetwater welcomes all to join us for worship. Our church is a warm and loving church, and we want you to feel comfortable and at liberty to call on us for anything you need pastorally. We would love to have you be our guest. All Sunday school classes will meet at 9:30 a.m., Sunday, Dec. 8, and will continue the study of The Story. There are Sunday school classes for all ages. Sunday is the Second Sunday in Advent. The Wilcox Family will be lighting the Advent Candles. Ty Crain will be worship assistant. Paula Carmichael and Linda Rasco will be greeters. There will be a congregational meeting to receive the 2014 budget and year-end reports.All youth will meet at the church for the Christmas program practice on Sunday, Dec. 8, at 4 p.m. at and Wednesday, Dec. 11, at 5 p.m.Kirk Stroman will present his gift of music, Reflections, Sunday, Dec. 15, at 6 p.m. in the sanctuary of the First Presbyterian Church. The community is invited. The mission of First Presbyterian Church is to make disciples for Jesus Christ by being an oasis of God’s love. Worship services are each Sunday at 10:45 a.m. We are located at the corner of 14th Street and McCaulley, across from the high school. Find out more information about our ministry by calling 235-5491 or visit the church’s website www.fpcsweetwater.org.First United Methodist Church:Sweetwater First United Methodist Church wants to invite you to join us on Sunday mornings to worship and praise our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. The United Methodist Church is open to all persons and is a place where all are welcome and encouraged to “come as you are” with the expectation that by the grace of God you will leave different. The change that a relationship with Christ brings about is a life-changing encounter and we believe that while God accepts us as we are He loves us enough not to leave us in our sins. We believe that Scripture informs all aspects of our lives and should be our rule and authority.The first service begins at 8:45 a.m. and is built around a traditional model with great hymns of the church. This service uses a more liturgical framework and often employs a wonderful choir. Immediately following the first service we have Sunday school classes for all ages and stages of life. We invite you to try one of our many opportunities to come together and seek God in small groups that emphasize God’s Word and proclaim His glory. At 10:50 a.m. we have a second worship service that has a decidedly contemporary flavor and incorporates more of progressive style and pace. This second service also has a “Children’s Church” for kids in preschool through third grade. The children stay through our time of praise and then go to their own worship service.Sweetwater FUMC also has youth activities on Sundays beginning at 6 p.m. with a prayer and praise time that we call Adoratio. Every Tuesday and Wednesday FUMC hosts the Gaylord’s Pantry and a clothes closet from 9:30-11:30 a.m. Please enter through the North (Fourth Street) entrance if you would like to receive God’s blessing through either of these ministries.News this week: Pastor Brian will be exploring the Christmas story from the perspective of Joseph. Come hear how the courage of Joseph can be an inspiration to us today. On Saturday from 9-11 a.m. we will be hosting “Breakfast with Santa” in the fellowship hall from 9:00-11:30 a.m. Santa will be there so bring your camera and take all the pictures you want. We will also have pancakes, juice and milk. The breakfast is a fundraiser for a mission trip to Romania next summer and the cost is only $5.Activities this week:• Saturday, Dec. 7 — Breakfast with Santa in the fellowship hall.• Sunday — Worship at 8:45 a.m. and 10:50 a.m.• Sunday at 6 p.m. — Adoratio• Wednesday at 10 a.m. — Morning Bible study.• Wednesday youth Bible studies — MS at 6 p.m. and HS at 7 p.m.Fun activities are offered at different times during the month for fourth through sixth graders (Club 456) and first through third graders (UMKids). If you have any questions call Linda at our church office (325-236-6617) or email firstname.lastname@example.org. If you need prayer or have the need to contact our pastor you can call the same number or email him at email@example.com.Highland Heights United Methodist Church:Our Church’s Mission Statement: “To glorify Christ in all that we do by bringing People to Christ and equipping them to serve Christ.”We welcome you to join us for the second Sunday of Advent Season in preparation for the birth of Jesus Christ. The sanctuary is adorned with Christmas decorations, an advent wreath and a chrismon tree filled with Christian symbols.Sunday school begins at 9:30 a.m. and worship service at 10:45 a.m., with Pastor Claude bringing the message entitled, “Who Warned You to Flee from the Wrath of God?” Worship assistants are Lisa Peterson serving as worship leader, Brenda Alexander leads the congregational hymns and plays the keyboard, pianist is Eugenia Hill and the greeter for December is Don Hatter. Lisa and Eugenia will give a special presentation during the morning worship.Upcoming December activities:• Caroling and delivering homebound Christmas sacks at 2 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 15;• A pre-Christmas service and fellowship from 4-6 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 22.December is filled with all the hustle and bustle of Christmas celebrations, including parties, shopping for gifts and traveling to different locations in order to share Christmas with grandparents and other family members. “Bless This House” calls for prayer that Jesus Christ is the center of all activities in giving thanks and praise to God for the birth of his precious Son. Pray our lives joyfully exemplifies that love during the Christmas season, not only to family and friends, but especially to ones who may be alone.You are always invited to join us at 1801 Lamar Street, sharing in our vision of making Disciples of Jesus Christ, growing spiritually, fulfilling our God-given gifts, witnessing to others and ministering to ones in need.Lamar Street Baptist Church:We invite you to join us Sunday at 9:30 a.m. for Sunday school, followed by our 10:40 a.m. service including children sermon, hymnals and praise songs and Bro. Clay will bring a message from the Bible. Our evening service starts at 6 p.m.On Wednesday evenings, we offer children activities for first through sixth; activities for preschool age; youth activities for 7th-12th graders; and Bible study and prayer for adults led by Bro. Clay. We have started practicing for our Christmas special, come join us for choir after the service. Our Christmas special will be performed on Sunday, Dec. 22, in the morning service.The Women’s Advent Bible Study, led by Melissa Jacobson will meet on Thursday, Dec. 12, at 6:30 p.m. in the fellowship hall. Ladies of all ages are welcome. Material can be downloaded from our website.The annual Christmas parade is Monday, Dec. 16, at 6:30 p.m.; we are hoping to have a float to represent our church, if you can help please contact Linda Kite.To learn more about Lamar Street Baptist Church, visit us at 513 Lamar, check out our website at www.lamarstreetbaptist.com, or call the church at 235-1779 and leave a message and someone will return your call.The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints:Christmas Is LovePresident Thomas S. MonsonTrue love is a reflection of the Savior’s love. In December of each year we call it the Christmas spirit. You can hear it. You can see it. You can feel it.Recently I thought back to an experience from my boyhood—an experience I have related on another occasion or two. I was just 11. Our Primary president, Melissa, was an older and loving gray-haired lady. One day at Primary, Melissa asked me to stay behind and visit with her. There the two of us sat in the otherwise empty chapel. She placed her arm about my shoulder and began to cry. Surprised, I asked her why she was crying.She replied, “I can’t seem to get the Trail Builder boys to be reverent during the opening exercises of Primary. Would you be willing to help me, Tommy?”I promised Melissa that I would. Strangely to me, but not to Melissa, that ended any problem of reverence in Primary. She had gone to the source of the problem—me. The solution was love.The years flew by. Marvelous Melissa, now in her 90s, lived in a nursing facility in the northwest part of Salt Lake City. Just before Christmas I determined to visit my beloved Primary president. Over the car radio I heard the song “Hark! The herald angels sing glory to the newborn King!” I reflected on the visit made by wise men those long years ago. They brought gifts of gold, of frankincense, and of myrrh. I brought only the gift of love and a desire to say thank you.I found Melissa in the lunchroom. She was staring at her plate of food, teasing it with the fork she held in her aged hand. Not a bite did she eat. As I spoke to her, my words were met by a benign but blank stare. I took the fork in hand and began to feed Melissa, talking all the time I did so about her service to boys and girls as a Primary worker. There wasn’t so much as a glimmer of recognition, far less a spoken word. Two other residents of the nursing home gazed at me with puzzled expressions. At last one of them spoke, saying, “Don’t talk to her. She doesn’t know anyone—even her own family. She hasn’t said a word in all the time she’s been here.”Luncheon ended. My one-sided conversation wound down. I stood to leave. I held her frail hand in mine, gazed into her wrinkled but beautiful countenance, and said, “God bless you, Melissa. Merry Christmas.” Without warning, she spoke the words, “I know you. You’re Tommy Monson, my Primary boy. How I love you.” She pressed my hand to her lips and bestowed on it a sweet kiss filled with love. Tears coursed down her cheeks and bathed our clasped hands. Those hands that day were hallowed by heaven and graced by God. The herald angels did sing. The words of the Master seemed to have a personal meaning never before fully felt: “Woman, behold thy son!” And to His disciple, “Behold thy mother!”From Bethlehem there seemed to echo the words:How silently, how silentlyThe wondrous gift is giv’n!So God imparts to human heartsThe blessings of his heav’n.No ear may hear his coming;But in this world of sin,Where meek souls will receive him, stillThe dear Christ enters in.As the Christmas season envelops us with all its glory, may we, as did the Wise Men, seek a bright, particular star to guide us to our Christmas opportunity in service to our fellowman. May we all make the journey to Bethlehem in spirit, taking with us a tender, caring heart as our gift to the Savior. And may one and all have a joy-filled Christmas.Calendar:• Dec. 8 — Sunday church service at 9 a.m. Visitors are welcome; Genealogy class at 1 p.m.The First Presidency invites Church members and friends to view the satellite broadcast of the annual Christmas devotional, which will originate from the Conference Center on Sunday, Dec. 8, at 7 p.m. Texas time. The hour-long program will include Christmas messages from church leaders and music from the Mormon Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra at Temple Square. The Christmas Devotional can be viewed on lds.org.• Dec. 9 — Family Home Evening.• Dec. 11 — Young women and Scouts 6:30 p.m.We are located 910 Elm Street in Sweetwater. If you would like to talk with representatives of the church about the Saviors teachings, call 1-800-622-5595. Missionaries serving in this area are Elder Olsen and Elder Rentmeister. Call 325 864-2999.