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Newsletter – December 2017

Duty or Delight?
What is December and the Christmas season for you? Is it a “duty” or “delight”? As we face all these things in the busy month of December, what are the “things” that you feel obligated to do? Seriously, this list could go on forever but here goes: …..Duty or Delight?…………ask yourself about the following…

Getting through the month of December. …..Duty or Delight?
Being with family during Christmas gatherings. …..Duty or Delight?
The perfect present to buy. (Rather than the gift of your “presence”.) …..Duty or Delight?
Remembering to praise the Lord for all you have versus all you want. …..Duty or Delight?
Teaching your children and grandchildren that it is about Jesus and not the world during this time of year. (with your words AND your actions) …..Duty or Delight?
Interrupting your Christmas Eve or day to go worship together in a faith community. …..Duty or Delight?
Giving of your TIME and MONEY to help and serve others in this season. …..Duty or Delight?

The “Duty or Delight” list could go on and on, not just during the month of December but all year around. I propose that you stop right now and make a list of all the things which are “Duties” that actually should be “Delights”. You may also want to carry this list around and add to it for over next few days. Now here is how we move things off the “duty” list onto the “delight” list.

Remember what Jesus said: “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the greatest and first commandment.” Matt 22:37-38 If we love the Lord this way then I would think this would move a lot of things off the “duties” list to the “delights” list. Serving at church would become a delight and not a duty. Taking the time to find a way to truly touch the lost would become a delight. (Being “personally missional” rather than being “mission giving” Mission is more than $.) Helping with children’s church or children’s Sunday School would be a delight! (We could use some more teachers.)

“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the greatest and first commandment.” Praying would be a delight. Separating yourself from your busy schedule would be a delight. Worshipping every Sunday with a faith community would be a delight.

Now add: “And a second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.” Matt 22:39-40 Loving that person you find unlovable becomes a delight. (You know, no more: anger, contempt, judging and condemnation.) Treating every person with grace and mercy, not disrespect or self-righteousness, becomes a delight. We would delight in doing what the Lord told Micah: “He has told you, O mortal, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?” Micah 6:8

I simply pray that you are blessed during this month of December. I pray that you delight in the Lord. I pray that you decrease your anger, contempt, judgment and condemnation of others and increase your grace and mercy for others. I pray that you seriously consider how you can give more time to Jesus and less time to the world. I really think a bunch of “duties” will become “delights” if you do all this.

I guess it is best summed up by this quote: “Want to keep Christ in Christmas? Feed the hungry, clothe the naked, forgive the guilty, welcome the unwanted, care for the ill, love your enemies, and do unto others as you would have done unto you.” It’s pretty simple, really.

Keep Jesus Christ in your Christmas. May the Lord bless you and keep you.


Center Your Heart: review the true meaning of the nativity and all the other decorations to help everyone’s heart stay centered on the deeper meaning of Christmas. Centering will help everyone become easier to get along with because the heart of the holiday will remain intact.

Hear what your friends and family are voicing as their stress. Listen as a gift that will lower their stress. Offer to help with kids, share shopping chores, share a special CD of your favorite Christmas music, pray with them and for them. Just listen. Just be in the room with them. Whatever it takes to lessen the load, even if for just a little while.

Invest in memories not material goods. Make time for family baking, tree decorating or board games. Hop in the car and drive around to see Christmas lights. Do you wanna build a snowman? Why not?! Turn off the “tech” stuff and really look at, listen too, embrace each other. Be in the moment.

Say your love with words. The best gift is for a person to hear their value and worth from your lips. Remember when you first knew each other and you couldn’t stay off the phone or the texts? You had all those sweet names and references for each other. You didn’t care how sappy it sounded or who heard you. Say it now. Say it from your heart. Watch their eyes dance.

Take time for romance. The best gift you can give your children is a happy marriage. Life gets in the way so often, we take it for granted that the other person is glad to see your smile at the end of the day, or that they appreciate the little things you do. A small gesture, a “thank you for just being there for me”, holding hands as you walk through the mall, joining them for a special church service you don’t normally attend, a short “I love you” or “just because” text, a smile across a crowded room that says “I’m proud your mine” – all these things cost so little but mean so much.

Make time to reach out to extended family. Visit or call grandparents, aunts and uncles. Use modern technology to connect. There’s no excuse in today’s social media world to not stay in touch. A phone call, card, text, video message, photo… might mean more to someone than you would ever guess. It only takes a moment, but the effect could last a lifetime.

Assume nothing. Ask those who are celebrating with you what their expectations are and communicate the plan clearly so people feel informed. Everyone is going in a hundred different directions these days, even just in one family. So when trying to get extended family and other friends together, make sure everyone knows the time, day, location, and details, in plenty of time! There’s nothing worse than scurrying around at the last minute trying to organize and construct the ‘perfect’ holiday event and then being too worn out and worn down to enjoy it.

Stay flexible. Don’t be a Christmas Nazi ordering family around. Instead, slow the pace, gather consensus or give options so that you create an environment of connecting. It’s supposed to be the “most wonderful time of the year”! Don’t make everyone dread next December by making this holiday one NOT to remember. Stop. Pray. Remember the TRUE meaning of Christmas. JESUS really is the reason for the season.


Chairperson – Mildred Heidenreich, Secretary – Melissa Gaines, Treasurer – Amber May, Co-Financial Secretary – Laura Heidenreich, Co-Financial Secretary – Rick Hudson, Membership Secretary – Melissa Gaines, Lay Member to Annual Conference – Jim Bishop,
Co-Lay Leaders – Debbie Bryant & Ron Hudson, Church Historian – David Hudson & Sue Ellen Parker, Sanctuary Stewards – Patty Craig & Laura Heidenreich, Muppet Coordinators – Mark & Stephanie Berry, Sunday School Superintendent – Jeanne Bishop,
Missions Chairperson – Kathy Hudson, Nurture Chairperson – Jamie Schafer, Staff-Parish Relations Chairperson – Chris Heidenreich, Trustees Chairperson – Mike Berry, Finance Chairperson – Mike Phares

PUMC Ad. Council met in regular session on Wednesday, November 15, 2017 at 6:30pm with the following present – Melissa Gaines, Mildred Heidenreich, Pastor Jeff Pinney, Amber May. The minutes from last month’s meeting, as well as the treasurer’s report, were approved as presented.

Finance – had not met
Lay Leadership/Nominations – had not met
Missions – had not met
Nurture – had not met
Staff-Parish Relations – had not met
Trustees – had not met, however, it was reported that a new sink has been installed in the FLC kitchen.

Use of the Family Life Center – the current rules & regulations list will be re-evaluated soon, and some changes made to better ensure proper use of the facility.

Sound Improvements for Family Life Center – In light of the recent grant awarded to PUMC through the Gibson County Community Foundation, plans are moving forward to update the sound in the Family Life Center. Sound panels have been chosen in a charcoal gray shade to match existing carpet on walls. A down payment of $4500.00 has been made, and work is expected to be done in December. 80 panels will be installed. To the church’s advantage, the installer has discounted labor costs. PUMC is responsible for providing a scissor lift. Total amount of panels on order is $10,710.00. With the grant amount of $10,000.00, only $710.00 will be needed from PUMC’s Building Fund to complete the project.

Gibson County Youth Center Sponsorship – Patoka UMC received a request from director Dan Beard, to continue a $50.00 sponsorship for the Gibson County Youth Center. The Council approved the request.

Designation of Bazaar Proceeds – The Council unanimously agreed that proceeds from this year’s Dinner & Bazaar should go to the General Fund.

Designation of White Gift Offering – The Council unanimously agreed that proceeds from this year’s White Gift Offering should go to the Frazier House Remodeling project.

Pastor Jeff told the Council that 55 children attended this year’s Trunk or Treat. There will be a 30-minute (earlier) time adjustment for next year’s event. Although the turn out for the first annual Coat-A-Community was less than hoped for, 30+ people were served and were very grateful to receive the items. Left over coats will be shared with other local outreach ministries. Pastor reminded the Council that the White Gift Program will be Sunday morning, December 17th, and Christmas Eve services are scheduled as usual for December 24th, at 9:15am(regular worship) and 9:00pm(Candlelight Communion Service).
With no further business, the meeting was closed with prayer.
The next regular meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, December 20th at 6:30pm.

Ad. Council Meetings Are Open To All Who Wish To Attend
We Invite And Encourage Everyone To Participate In The Plans And Business Of Our Church

The family & friends of Casey Lamb
The family & friends of Robert “Bob” Stone(brother of Paul “Shorty” Stone)
The family & friends of David Lloyd(father of Stephanie Berry)

Our Nation, Our Government, Our Leaders, Our Schools, Our Churches, Our Homes & Families Our Military
Christopher Cook & family (New Mexico); Brad Hale (Nephew of Dick & Babs Johnson / re-deployed)
Mark Ambrose, Jr. (Grand big of Kevin Meyer / on alert status with U.S. Coast Guard / completing degree at Ball State) Unspoken Health Concerns, Unspoken Requests Trinity Cluster Churches – Decker, Decker Chapel, Hazleton, Mt. Olive, Patoka, and Wheeling
Ted Thompson, Linus Lindy, Buddy Rogers, Jesse Jo Odom, Darvin Hulfachor, Travis Lashbrook, Greg Nixon
Jake Neuffer, David Lloyd, Megan Miller, Marcella Welsh, Patty Pflug, Mike Ellis, Bonnie Potts, Romaine McCabe,
Matt Harper, Toni Whitehouse, Karen Gress, Harold Cox, Harlan Scott, Jeff Stenfenagel, Jewell Pressley, Vic Welch,
Karen Muncy, Tony Hughen, Sharon Smith, Ann Griffith, Chea Burton, Sheila Pflug, Judy Lawson, Ruth Knust,
Tina Porter, Irene Williams

Ellen Roach(sister of Jim Bishop)-Parkview Care Center-Evansville
Jean Boyles-Evansville,
Margaret Dodson-Gentle Care-Vincennes
Rev. Patricia Greffey-Rocky Mountain Manor-Wyoming
Frank Eads – assisted living
Steve Sullivan (brother of Faith Livermore)-Amber Manor-Petersburg
Ellen Vinson (friend of Jack & Eleanor McDowell)-Amber Manor-Petersburg
Betty Bateman-at grandson’s in Evansville
Mary Lou Broadwater (sister-in-law of Mildred Heidenreich)-Brookside Village-Jasper

***Congratulations to Emma Ault on her induction into National Honor Society!
***Congratulations to Jasmine MacKay on her induction into National Honor Society!
***Congratulations to Andrew May on his induction into Jr. National Honor Society!
***Thanking God for another successful Bazaar and the opportunity to serve the community, and perhaps touch a life through sharing Jesus, extending comfort & friendship, or just a smile of welcome and warmth.

1-Ed Horrall
2-Taylor Anthis
4-Dortha Fortner
5-Mandy Bilyeu
6-Fred Anthis
7-Johnna Braden
7-Ashlyn Anthis
9-Ray Stuckey
12-Shelley Martin
16-Rick Hudson
17-Mackenzie Bilyeu
18-Larry Luttrell
19-Eddie Ray Craig, III
19-Pat Chamberlain
22-Pat Anthis
25-Barbara Skelton
25-Marge Hunt
27-Asher Braden

2-Chris & Laura Heidenreich
12-Spencer & Melissa Gaines
20-Dick & Barbara Johnson
28-Mike & Debby Phares
31-Clint & Sharon Anthis

If You Are Unable To Meet This Obligation It Is Your Responsibility To
Find A Replacement And To Notify The Pastor and Melissa Of The Change Prior To Your Sunday

Dec. 3 Kathy H. David M.
Dec. 10 Kathy H. Grace L.
Dec. 17 Nedra W. Jim B.
Dec. 24 Nedra W. Ron H.
Dec. 31 Kathy H. Nora M.

Dec. 3 Jim B. Colton D. & Ryder D.
Dec. 10 James L. Asher B. & Jamison M.
Dec. 17 Nora M. Addison S. & Camden M.
Dec. 24 Patty C. Jamison M. & Brandon L.
Dec. 31 Chris H. Aadin L. & Kimberly C.

Dec. 3 Ellyn H. Grace L.
Dec. 10 Jim B. Debbie B.
Dec. 17 Mark B. Jeanne B.
Dec. 24 Mildred H. Muppets
Dec. 31 Ron & Kathy H. Pastor Jeff

Dec. 3 Sam M., Andy S., Rick H., Greg A.
Dec. 10 Ellie A., Connor M., Christian S., Ethan L.
Dec. 17 Ron H., (need volunteer), David H., Mike B.
Dec. 24 Alison M., Ashlyn A., Ava L., Brittany K.
Dec. 31 Mike K., James L., David M., Jeff C.

Dec. 3 Bonnie P.
Dec. 10 Jamie S.
Dec. 17 Amanda S.
Dec. 24 Shea D.
Dec. 31 Laura H.


BIBLE-IN-A-YEAR: Copies of the monthly “Bible-In-A-Year” readings have been placed near the entry. Feel free to pick one up!!

BRA BANK APPEAL: We continue collecting gently used bras (leave in designated container by front doors) for a special project designed to aid African women in the prevention of sexual assaults [less likely to be attacked if wearing undergarments] and human trafficking. For more info go to, or and click on ‘Mozambique Or Bust’.

We continue to collect Bibles, Sunday School lessons, Upper Rooms, Our Daily Bread, Hymnals… basically any Christian literature, to be distributed to third world countries where so many are hungry for the word of God that they take our excess, out of date items and cherish them. Instead of throwing out these things, place them in the designated container near the front entrance and we will get them to people who need them.

SOUND PERSONNEL SUBS NEEDED: We are always in need of a few volunteers who will agree to fill in when a sub is needed to run our sound board and power point presentation on Sunday morning. It is a very important job but one that is easily mastered after a lesson or two. If interested contact Pastor Jeff.

BIBLE STUDY: There’s always room for anyone who has a desire to ‘grow in the knowledge & grace of the Lord’… so join us Tuesdays at 7:00pm (unless otherwise noted in the bulletin) in the Family Life Center Wesley Room. The discussions are lively, the fellowship is sweet, and the Lord always blesses!!
WHEN BORROWING ITEMS from the church or Family Life Center, we ask that you let the pastor or Melissa know so that we don’t over extend our lending. Folks borrow tables for yard sales (old brown tables in attached garage) or tables & chairs for family events, even walkers & wheel chairs, and we try to keep a record of who needs what, when, so that everyone benefits from what we have available. We wouldn’t want to promise tables or equipment to someone and find that they aren’t there because someone else borrowed them on the spur of the moment and forgot to let us know. Thanks for helping us keep things running smoothly!

DEADLINE FOR BULLETIN is Wednesday (12:00 noon). Deadline for the next monthly Newsletter is the 3rd Monday (12:00 noon) of the current month.

Anyone who would like to become a member of Patoka UMC, please contact the pastor for more information.

All men, all ages are invited to breakfast & fellowship on the last Saturday of the month at 7:00am in the Family Life Center. Invite a friend!!

HELP KEEP US CURRENT… we strive to keep all information in newsletters, bulletins, directory books, on file, and in the computer up to date, but we need your help. If your personal information – phone #, email address, etc. – changes please let us know in the church office while you’re updating other pertinent sources. If someone needs to be added or removed from our birthday & anniversary list, directory listings, or even the prayer list, your input is needed. We may or may not ‘hear through the grapevine’ that something changes, so we ask that you help us serve you best by taking just a minute to keep us current. We appreciate any and all assistance and updates.

DON’T FORGET $$$: The refrigerator (soft drinks) is a great convenience for many. The proceeds go to our youth. Please be sure to pay as you buy or we may need to discontinue.

DONATE OLD CELL PHONES – Albion Fellows Bacon Center can benefit from your old, unwanted cell phones, to be reprogrammed for 911 calls to assist victims of domestic abuse & other emergency situations. PUMC has a basket in the entryway specifically for discarded cell phones. The chargers would be appreciated as well, but are not required.

APPLE BUTTER is still available in both regular & Splenda varieties.
Quarts – $8.00; Pints – $6.00; ½ Pints – $4.00

HOLY COMMUNION will be observed at Patoka UMC on Sunday, December 3rd.

PANTRY SUNDAY: December 3rd is Pantry Sunday… each Communion Sunday [1st Sunday of the month] we ask that you bring canned goods and non-perishable items [especially canned meats and/or box dinners] with you to place in the collection container near the front doors for the Patoka Food Pantry. We are fed by Jesus Christ on Communion Sunday, therefore we need to feed others. [Items which always come in handy – and cannot be purchased with food stamps – soap, shampoo, laundry detergent, dish soap, deodorant, paper towels, toilet paper, toothpaste]

NO MEN’S BREAKFAST IN DECEMBER – but please plan to join us again in the new year, invite guests, and enjoy a time of food & fellowship as we grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord!

CAROLING & PIZZA!! Mark your calendars for Sunday, December 3rd as we’ll share the season in song with the residents & staff at Gibson General 5th floor, The Waters and River Oaks. Meet at GGH at 4:00pm in the front lobby. Then we’ll be at The Waters around 4:45 and River Oaks about 5:30. Following, we’ll meet at Pizza Hut (approximately 6:15) for food & fellowship. If you’ve never joined us for caroling before, please don’t miss out on a great evening! It will bless you more than you can imagine!

BIG CHURCH NIGHT OUT FALL TOUR featuring Newsboys, Sidewalk Prophets, 7eventh Time Down, Blanca, Derek Minor, Brock Gill, Adam Agee, Jamison Strain, and Jeremy Willet is Thursday, December 7th at 7:00pm at the Owensboro Convention Center. All seats reserved! Tickets on sale NOW (starting at $18)! 2 free tickets with groups of 10 or more – limited availability. For tickets & more info go to or

JOURNEY (TO BETHLEHEM), sponsored by New Hope Christian Church in Washington, Indiana, is an interactive walking tour, focusing on the sights, sounds, tastes and characters associated with Bethlehem at the time of Jesus’ birth. Most of the tour takes place outside, regardless of the weather, with a considerable amount of walking. Wheel chairs & walkers/strollers cannot navigate the path. Admission is free. Tickets are not required – it is first come, first serve. For more information about dates/times/group rates, call New Hope at 812-254-1006 or go to

CHRISTMAS FAMILY: Patoka UMC will sponsor a family during the holidays to brighten their Christmas and show them the love of Jesus at a time when we celebrate with our own families by sharing gifts and meals and happy times, and remember the greatest gift ever given to us – God’s own Son. All gifts must be wrapped and to the Family Life Center no later than Sunday, December 10th. Please be sure to mark each gift with the appropriate information – who gift is for – such as “boy 1” or “girl 1”. Details following:
 Boy 1 – boys 12 / husky 14; interests are Harry Potter, building/science toys
 Girl 1 – junior size 3; interests are arts/crafts books, board games
 Boy 2 – boys size 6; interests are Legos, building toys, crafts, books
 Girl 2 – girls size 6-6x; interests are dolls, Barbies, books, board games
 Boy 3 – boys size 4T; interests are trains, cars, Paw Patrol, books

ADVENT COIN BOXES AND DEVOTIONALS are available on the foyer table. This year’s White Gift Offering will go to the Frazier House Remodeling Project. Coin boxes will be collected on Sunday morning, December 17th in connection with the White Gift/Children’s Program.

GORDON MOTE IN CONCERT: Christian singer, pianist, and worship leader Gordon Mote will be in concert at Owensville United Methodist Church on Thursday, December 21st at 7:00pm. Mote, has released eight studio albums, including the album featuring his well-known hit Don’t Let Me Miss the Glory, and has toured with the Gaithers. A free will offering will be taken. The church is located at 103 S. 3rd Street in Owensville. For more information call 812-724-4041.

CANDLELIGHT / COMMUNION SERVICE: Patoka UMC’s Christmas Eve Candlelight and Communion Service begins at 9:00pm on December 24th. We invite everyone to join us as we ready our hearts and spirits to once again welcome the Christ Child. What better way to share the holidays than in God’s house with the ones we love & worship with throughout the year. Invite friends and family to be a part of this special evening.

2018 OFFERING ENVELOPES: An individual offering envelope system is available at PUMC for your convenience. This allows you to designate on the envelope where you prefer your tithes & offerings to go each week – such as General Fund, Missions, etc. Use of these envelopes is confidential. They may also be used for tax purposes. For 2018 envelopes, contact Laura Heidenreich or Rick Hudson.

AUCTION ITEMS / AFTER CHRISTMAS SALES!! After Christmas sales are the perfect time to pick up a few items for the church’s annual auction – which is closer than you think! Questions? Contact Jamie Schafer.

UN-DECORATING OF THE CHURCH will take place on Wednesday, January 10th at 5:00pm. Any and all help would be appreciated.

Patoka UMC will once again observe Souper Bowl of Caring Sunday on Sunday February 4, 2018 – which is our regular Pantry Sunday. We hope to gather in even more food and items than we did last year, for the Patoka Presbyterian Church Food Pantry, which we share in stocking for outreach to our community. More than 25 years ago the Souper Bowl of Caring began with a simple prayer from a single youth group: “Lord, even as we enjoy the Super Bowl football game, help us be mindful of those without a bowl of soup to eat”. Since that day, more than $110million has been raised for local charities across the country. Be part of this movement that’s sharing God’s love with those in need… please give generously on February 4th and help us exceed last year’s totals – 395 items.

FAT TUESDAY PANCAKE SUPPER: This year’s Fat Tuesday Pancake Supper is scheduled for February 13th from 4:30-6:00pm in the Family Life Center. A free-will offering will be taken as a fundraiser for our youth. YOUTH – put this on your calendar now – we need you here to work!!! The menu includes pancakes, sausage, juice, coffee and milk. Save yourself the trouble of cooking that evening and come and support our youth!

ASH WEDNESDAY will be observed with a special service at Patoka UMC on February 14th at 7:00pm. Ash Wednesday begins the season of Lent, a time of reflection on our individual relationship with God and a re-dedication to purpose our lives in following Him completely. Ashes rubbed on the forehead of those who attend are a reminder of our mortality and an expression of our repentance. All are invited to share this very special evening. We hope you will invite someone to join us as well.

 Feb. 15th – Winter Jam
 March 10th – Clocks Forward 1 Hour
 March 25th – Easter Egg Hunt
• Pecans – Class #7 has pecans – pieces and halves, as well as a wide variety of knives and kitchen items for sale. Pecans/cutlery can be purchased in the Family Life Center, thru any member of the class.
• Meetings – All meetings, except Staff-Parish, are open to everyone in the congregation. [contact any member of the Staff-Parish Committee at any time however, with relevant concerns] We invite all to participate in the business & ministries of the church. Committees and chairpersons are listed in the back of the Directory Book.
• Cookbooks – A Taste of Heaven – Patoka UMC Church Family & Friends Cookbooks – are available for purchase in the Family Life Center and on the front entrance table. Books are $10 each.
• Pew Pads – Please sign the pew pad each Sunday morning with the names of each family member in attendance… and make sure your neighbor has signed also. If you do not sign we assume you are not in attendance and bulletins/newsletters will be sent. It is also vital that you sign for accurate record keeping. Pew pads can also be used to list prayer requests. It only takes a minute to sign and pass the book.
• Web Site – Visit regularly for up-to-date information. It is also compatible with your phone! If you would like to help maintain the web site, please let Pastor Jeff know.
• PUMC Endowment Fund: In the bulletin’s financial section you see “PUMC Endowment Fund” balance each week… funds given by members & friends of PUMC. This is a great way to benefit the church! The principle generates interest annually to be used as we see fit. It is backed by the Lilly Foundation, conservatively invested, and managed by the Gibson Co. Comm. Foundation. Each of the 92 counties in IN has this (safe investment). With $100,000 in the fund, we would receive at least $4,000 annually, as long as the fund exists. This fund would be an excellent choice for estate planning or giving now. If you have immediate questions, please contact Pastor Jeff.

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