Our quarterly meeting will be held on Sunday, November 13th immediately following the 11am worship service. This will be a brief meeting as we make plans for the remainder of the year, receive project and circle updates, have elections, and plan for another year. We’ll also hear a brief convention report. If you currently are not involved in one of our Bible study groups, this would be a great opportunity to drop in and find out what Zion WELCA is all about. All women of Zion are members of WELCA. You are invited to take part and get involved in your organization. Bible study meeting times and locations are listed in Zionews.
Quilts are in need everywhere! If you are interested in starting and helping set-up a Quilt Ministry, please contact Norma Ralph (912-313-2465). Even if you don’t have a sewing machine, you can still get involved! We will need folks to cut, pin, tie, and so on. If you have material and need a home for it, let Norma know as well. Call today and help us get this ministry going as the cold weather is starting to set in and quilts will be in need everywhere!
Rehearsals and preparations for our Children’s Christmas Program are well underway. Costumes are being selected and measured, parts are being assigned and songs are being practiced during Sunday School and Wednesday’s LIFE! program. All children and youth from preschool through high school are invited to join in this
simple retelling of the Christmas story.
This year’s Joint Thanksgiving Service will be hosted here at Zion on November 20th at 6:00 p.m. Several area churches will gather with us for a joyful worship service with prayer and music. A joint choir will bless us with song, and the offering will go to benefit a social ministry in Effingham. We invite you to come and give thanks to God for all he does for us! A fellowship reception will follow the service. We will let Zion members know closer to the event what finger foods to bring.
All Saints Sunday is a celebration of those who have lived and died in the faith and is observed this year on Sunday, November 6, 2011. This will be an opportunity for Zion Church to remember and give thanks to God for the lives and service of these members. During the service, we will light a candle and have a moment of prayerful silence in memory of those who have died since last All Saints Sunday: Danny Zeigler, Leona Helmey, Buck Buckner and Wayne Glover. Everyone is invited to bring flowers and place them by the communion rail before worship, & then place them on graves of loved ones at the conclusion of the service in the cemetery.
I stood in the middle of the cypress swamp and wondered at the change a season makes in the life of an ecosystem. The water dried up a month ago. Gone now are the toads and tree frogs. Gone are the mosquitoes that seek me out like a grand buffet. It was eerily quiet now; no sound but the wind blowing the fallen leaves around. I pulled my hood up over my head, and stuffed my cold hands into my pockets.
November is a lonesome month. It speaks of the end of things. The grass withers. Flowers fade. And, the dying leaves remind us of our own mortality. How fitting it is that we set aside days in November to honor our military dead, and to remember loved ones past.
All Saints Day, Veteran’s Day, and Christ the King Sunday all fall in November. We spend time in our cemeteries, planting mums and laying wreaths. We come to the end of the Church Year. We pull our hoods up over our heads, stuff our cold hands into our pockets and listen to the wind blow our memories around like fallen leaves.
But, the season of Advent also begins in November this year – that waiting time that speaks of hope and new beginnings. We are reminded that by his life, death and resurrection, our Lord Jesus put an end to Death! Because of Christ, we are comforted to know that these precious ones we long to see wait for us on the other side of the veil, just as we await the Lord’s coming again in all of his glory; the time when he will make all things right.
I nudge the leaves aside with the toe of my shoe, and there, under the blanket of Fall, a green shoot slumbers. I smile at the promise it holds of new life. Replacing its cover, I walk out of the shadow of the cypress trees and into the waning sun. The earth turns. Advent arrives. Christ will come again. And, I can wait.
May God bless your waiting time with peace and joy and laughter.
Pastor Barb <><
Wait for the Lord; be strong, take heart. Psalm 27:14