From the President, Bob McKinney

Well, where should I start with this month’s column.  I am coming up to the end of serving as your Council President.  To say the least, it has been quite interesting, and I mean that in a good way.  I think I have had my ups and downs during the two-year period.  I think we have accomplished much, but there is much to do.  My first year was wrapped up in our Shared Ministry with St. Paul.  We worked very hard in accomplishing much between our two churches, as we both have similar strengths and weaknesses.  It was our goal to continue to work on ways we could come together as one.  Then present that to both congregations for approval.  We were not able to pass a resolution to move forward, so those efforts fell short.  One last word on this – I understand it is very difficult and emotional to possibly close one church and combine with another, but in our current times, this is becoming a necessity to continue spreading the word of God and outreach we need to do in our communities.

My second year became consumed with the finances of the church.  It was difficult for committees to function at 100% because of cash flow.  Committee Chairs were digging into their pockets to fund programs so they could continue.  We had a “Catch-up” Sunday in August to help folks to catch up on their summer giving.  That helped to a smaller degree.  Every conversation I would have seemed to involve cash flow and finances.

For some good news, we were able to update more of our heating and cooling systems, install new doors, update the kitchen and women’s restroom, and several outside areas were improved.  Most of this was because of the Fuchs Fund and private donations by our congregation.

I will end this with my sincere appreciation to Council, Pastor Bill, and the congregation for your help during my tenure as President.  But, if you so choose, I will be changing chairs on Council to be the Finance Chairperson.  This will be quite the challenge and you will again be hearing some tough love from me early in the year.

From the Fellowship Committee Chairperson, Nancy Walters

Fellowship in January…Well, another year has passed.  Time for more Fellowships!  We will have our first one of the year on Sunday, January 20, after both services.  There will be a sign-up sheet on the main bulletin board.  Thank you to all who have donated supplies; every item on the wish list has now been donated.  I would also like to thank my husband, Rollie Walters, for painting the kitchen and removing the old tile from the floor.  He also cleaned the windows in the kitchen so that we can finally see!  Hopefully the new tile will be installed soon.  Stop in and see what a great job he did.  Thanks honey!

From the Later Life Committee, Member Lynne Walters

Card Class…Join us for a card-making class on Thursday, January 24, in the Activity Room.  We will be making 4 cards.  The theme is “Love and Kisses”.  Classes will be at 2:00 pm and 6:00 pm.  The cost is $12.00.  Please bring adhesives like double-stick tape and liquid glue.  There is a sign-up sheet on the bulletin board.  The deadline for signing up is Sunday, January 20.  If you have any questions, please contact Lynne Walters.

From the Parish Education Committee, Member Pat Was

The Adult Forum will begin a new Ray Vander Laan series titled “Cultures in Conflict” beginning on January 6.  The five-part series follows Paul as he travels through Greece and Israel spreading the Gospel in a world totally at odds with what he is preaching.  It offers us an opportunity to understand how we can cope with the issues of our present society if our belief is strong enough.

From the Parish Nurse, Dora Muller

“You only live once, but if you do it right, once is enough.”

A brand new year with all the expectations can lead to a better and healthier life.  We all try to eat right, exercise, and adopt healthier behaviors.  However, all these steps will not prevent the natural process of aging.  Our body is a perfect machine, but all machines will show some wear and tear.  Or, like my husband says, some depreciation is expected.  This year we will discuss the role of chronic diseases that can affect our health.  Some of these diseases can be the result of unwise health behaviors such as smoking; others can be occupational hazards such as fumes or gases in the environment in the work place.  And we cannot forget those genes that we inherit from our parents, which we can do nothing about.  For 2019, our goal will be to understand how chronic diseases can affect our lives, how to prevent them, and more importantly, if they are unavoidable, how to manage them.  With careful management and knowledge of preventive measures, we all can adopt measures to decrease the risk of suffering from chronic diseases all too common during our golden years.