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Newsletter January 2017

What if?
What if we really took the words of Jesus and applied them in our life? Would we act as we act? In our Luke Bible study on Tuesday nights we are looking at what Jesus said and how we can apply them in our life. I know I am convicted in that I really don’t apply them 100% of the time, and that bothers me. Here is just some of what we have found Jesus telling us:

Internal issues to apply:
Seek Him & He will heal, spiritually and completely – It takes humility to get into the kingdom
We’re never full spiritually – Don’t let $ be your idol – “Heart” dictates what you say & are
Really trust & have faith even when you can’t see Jesus, (pointed out 2 times) – Don’t rate sin & don’t forget you need to repent no matter what the sin is – Expect to need perseverance & patience – Priorities: God then spouse then family then fellow followers are family (all are close)
Jesus helped Legion & cured therefore talk to the worst, don’t give up on the worst, nothing/no one is impossible for God to touch – Accept the redeemed back – Worry less about “material” things & focus on souls – Do we worry about the “pigs”, the world stuff more than the lost? – He wants us to gain knowledge in relationship – We should feel compelled to witness

External actions to apply:
Stand up & for the Word of God – Love others – Bless & pray & be generous to your enemies, keep trying without expectation – “Choose” to act like Jesus, that’s the foundation in our life –
Jesus was willing to break the legalism rules of the day therefore we should not be afraid too &
we should be willing to take the consequences – We are supposed to help God redeem people –
Let your “Jesus light shine. – Really listen to God’s will & DO IT – Look for God in Nature – go into the city, town, everywhere & declare – Tell your witness and be prepared – Take the time for detours for God – It takes 1 on 1 contact

Luke’s main point – Watch hypocrisy & legalism – legalism is not the answer

Luke’s main point may be what we have come to focus too much on. Church has become more about “church” than Jesus. We declare that Jesus was the Son of God, the exact representation of God but only partially follow him. When Jesus was giving us new commandments, I believe they really were new commandments. Yes the Bible is inspired from God, but Jesus’ words are the clarification. Kierkegaard said: “The matter is quite simple. The Bible is very easy to understand. But we Christians…..pretend to be unable to understand it because we know very well the minute we understand, we are obliged to act accordingly.” Jesus is the lens through which we look at the Bible and the world; everything is fulfilled in Christ.

I have done a poor job of applying the actions Jesus calls us to do and therefore the people wanting more of what we have dwindle. We are called to follow Jesus and we follow when we are living as Jesus lived which is documented in the Bible. Sad to say our Christianity has become obsessed with what Christians believe rather than how Christians live. We talk a lot about doctrine but little about practice and the world sees little difference in how we live and how the good people of the world live. Is the church full of believers but followers are hard to come by? Think about this in our language when we say things like, “Are you a believer?” Jesus did not send us into the world to make believers but to make disciples. You can worship Jesus without doing the things he says. We can believe him and still not follow Him. When that happens, we are missing what Jesus desired and when that is happening all too often now, people do not desire to come to Jesus. People do not need to hear our theological viewpoint, they need to see our “theology” changing our lives and the lives of others and by extension they can begin to see how Jesus can change their life.

Being Christian is dependent on the way we respond to what he did for us. As an old saying goes, “I’m not saved because I’m good, but I’m trying to be good because I’m saved.” We know good works do not earn our salvation but most definitely they prove and demonstrate our salvation. Here is the final point: since we have been saved by grace – it should make us more gracious! Frankly, the world is not seeing that in us. Grace, grace given and extended to the poor, the downtrodden, the hurting. Grace without judgment. Grace with love. As we start this new year, maybe it’s time we stopped being so legalistic and really studied the words of Jesus and make every effort every day to apply them and live them in our life? Suggestion: slowly read Matthew chapter 5 through 7 and see what needs to change or slowly read the words of Jesus in Luke and apply them. Why not join us on Tuesday nights at 7:00 and study Luke?

PUMC Ad. Council met in special session on Sunday, December 18th following worship. No report available. If you had / have business for the Council, before the January meeting, please contact Pastor Jeff or Mildred Heidenreich.

Patoka United Methodist Church’s Administrative Council ordinarily meets the third Wednesday of each month at 6:30pm in the Family Life Center Wesley Room. Ad. Council’s purpose (according to U.M. Church Discipline) is to plan a program of nurture, outreach, and witness; implement the plan; provide an administrative infrastructure; align the plan with the mission of the church; evaluate the effectiveness of the plan; act as the administrative agency of the charge conference; and supervise the local congregation so that we fulfill our mission of making disciples of Jesus Christ. Simply put, Ad. Council mainly focuses on and addresses the business aspects of church life and the day-to-day operations and needs of the church as a ministry. Ad. Council is open to any and all who would like to be a part of or have a voice in the plans and business of Patoka UMC. The Council is comprised of those listed below, however, All are welcome to attend.
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
The next regular meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, January 11th 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 Audry Briggs(aunt of Mike Kermode)
The family & friends of Elizabeth Lankford Bruce(step-mother of Kelley Marvel / sister-in-law of Bob Bruce)
The family & friends of Harold Cantrell (father of neighbor & day-care helper of Lisa Meyer)
The family & friends of Garry Taylor

Our Military
Derek Wilson (nephew of Pat Chamberlain & Jo Ellen Bingham / Navy / Naples, Italy);
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
Dave Newcome, Ed Prior, Sue Parker’s sister-in-law/Dixie, Bobby & Dawn York, Fred Johnson, Toni Whitehouse
Elizabeth Lankford Bruce, Garry & Tina Taylor, Karen Gress, Steve Sullivan, Harold Cox, Harlan Scott, Dick Johnson,
Heather Ota, Denise Kilps, Sue Parker, Scott Payne, Casey Lamb, Jeff Stenfenagel, Jewell Pressley, Bernie Burger,
Vic Welch, Faith Livermore, Larry & Heather Luttrell, Ed & Ruth Knust, Frank Conner, Audry Briggs, Laura Prior,
Tom Bryant, Rita Barton, Haily/daughter of Gina Beckner, Engelbrecht family, Jim Bishop, Gary Kinnaman

Ellen Roach-Good Samaritan Nursing Home(Oakland City, IN)
Jean Boyles-Evansville,
Margaret Dodson-The Waters
Rev. Patricia Greffey-Rocky Mountain Manor(Wyoming)
Frank Eads
Steve Sullivan (brother of Faith Livermore)-Amber Manor-Petersburg

…We are grateful for the lives that were changed through the gift of salvation in 2016, situations that were changed because of the obedience of our prayer warriors, needs that were met through our outreach ministries, missions, and local food pantry, new faces and friends that joined our church family during the year, times of fun & fellowship and moments of care & compassion shared during times of grief. Most of all we are grateful that the Lord has allowed Patoka UMC to continue its ministry and purpose – to make disciples and to further the Kingdom – and we pray for continued direction and discernment in this new year. Thank you, Father God, for who You are! Make us worthy to represent You. Amen.

2-Allison May
2-Fred Wise
2-Sue Ellen Parker
5-Andrew May
9-Micah Braden
10-Nedra West
10-Debby Phares
11-Grace Luttrell
14-Jennifer MacKay
14-Alyssa Hudson
14-Patti Davis
17-Brad Stith
18-Bethney Anthis
22-Ellyn Horrall
28-Trevor Cotterman
29-Marty Bishop

14-Ed & Laura Prior
16-Frank & Flo Conner

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
Jan. 1 Kathy H. Nora M.
Jan. 8 Kathy H. Debbie B.
Jan. 15 Nedra W. Mike P.
Jan. 22 Nedra W. Barbara S.
Jan. 29 Kathy H. Mark B.

Jan. 1 Mark B. Addison S. & Jamison M.
Jan. 8 David H. Connor M. & Camden M.
Jan. 15 Becky L. Aadin L. & Kimberly C.
Jan. 22 Jim B. Jamison M. & Brandon L.
Jan. 29 James L. Lance S. & Asher B.

Jan. 1 Jim B. Debby P.
Jan. 8 Mark B. Bonnie P.
Jan. 15 Mildred H. Debbie B.
Jan. 22 Jack & Eleanor M. Muppets
Jan. 29 Ron & Kathy H. Jeanne B.

Jan. 1 Frank C., John A., Mike P., Don D.
Jan. 8 Ben H., Emma A., Olivia M., Andrew M.
Jan. 15 Sam M., Andy S., Rick H., Greg A.
Jan. 22 Ellie A., Cydney M., Christian S., Ethan L.
Jan. 29 Ron H., Jim B., David H., Mike B.

Jan. 1 Bonnie P.
Jan. 8 Jamie S.
Jan. 15 Amanda S.
Jan. 22 Shea D.
Jan. 29 Laura H.


UMYF is for anyone in grades 5-12 and meets the 2nd & 4th Sundays of the month from 10:30-11:30am (unless otherwise noted in the bulletin). Hope To See You There!!


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 when needed, and we try to keep a record of who will need what, and when, so that everyone benefits from what we have available. We wouldn’t want to promise tables or equipment to someone and then 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!!

 Quarts are $8; pints $6; half-pints $4
 Regular (made with apples, sugar, red hots, cinnamon)
 Regular/ brown (no red hots)
 Splenda (made with apples, Splenda, red hots, cinnamon)
 Splenda/brown (no red hots)

DONATE YOUR OLD CELL PHONES: Albion Fellows Bacon Center is one of the organizations supported by Patoka UMC through Missions giving. Albion Fellows would also benefit from your old, unwanted cell phones, which would be reprogrammed for 911 calls to assist victims of domestic abuse and other emergency situations. Patoka UMC now has a basket in the entryway specifically for discarded cell phones, along with our other collections. If you have the chargers for your old phones they would be appreciated as well, but are not required.

2017 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 go each week – such as General Fund, Missions, etc. Use of these envelopes is confidential. They may also be used for tax purposes. For 2017 envelopes, contact Marilyn Hudson at 812-779-5235.

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

HOLY COMMUNION will be observed at Patoka UMC on Sunday, January 1st.

PANTRY SUNDAY: January 1st 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. A great number of families have been served recently through the Patoka Food Pantry and the shelves need restocking. Below are a number of items that are greatly needed at this time. Thank you in advance for your generosity and willingness to share with and bless others. Needed: hamburger helper box dinners, boxes of spaghetti, spaghetti sauce, cornbread mix, boxes of any variety of cheesy potatoes, pasta sides (in packets), canned beef stew, Spam & canned luncheon type meats, canned sausage gravy, canned ravioli/spaghetti & meatballs, etc., canned carrots, canned chili with beans, cooking oil, peanut butter, grape jelly, sugar, icing (no cake mixes needed at this time), canned tomato juice, Sunny D, hot chocolate or hot cocoa mixes, kool-aid, paper towels, toilet tissue, kleenex, dish soap, laundry detergent, men’s & women’s deodorant, shampoo, toothpaste, bar soap, shaving cream. [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]

UN-DECORATING OF THE CHURCH will take place on Wednesday, January 4th at 5:00pm. Any and all help would be appreciated.

NU-VISION: Please take a moment and read this letter. I will be traveling to Rwanda again in February and we need your help for a kitchen remodel/addition. We now will have 1,000 students and the kitchen wasn’t big enough for the 700 plus we had. You will be feeding the school kids and you will be employing the locals. I will also be preaching and participating in school religion classes. May God Bless you! Jeff (Updates will occur on facebook “Nu-Vision USA pages as well as some e-mail)
Let me tell you what we are about:
Nu-Vision High School / Middle School
1. It is a Christian boarding school.
2. In just 9 short years it has grown to over 1,000 students.
3. Academically it is a premier Rwandan school.
4. At least 80 students have gone on to the university level world wide.
5. Students give back to the community. The school allows locals to tap into water and electricity, free.
1. Over 200 other students are sponsored at other schools in Rwanda @ $300 / year
2. Worship outreach is done to other schools in the country
3. Distribution of Bibles and Bible tracts to children in Rwanda
4. Active in Aids education with children and families in Rwanda
I will be traveling to Rwanda for the 10th time in February for 2 weeks. Your contribution will go towards material and labor for the kitchen while I am there. None of your funds finance my trip.
When you contribute these things happen:
1. For every $ you contribute a matching $ will be given by a wonderful contributor up to $5,000! You cannot invest in anything with a better return!
2. Or in addition to above. – You can sponsor a child in Rwandan school for $25 per month or $300 per year.
Why should you contribute?
Nu-Vision Ministry is a Christian ministry. The school begins each day with devotions and yes it is open to children of all faiths. Education is the key to all people in the world and you can help. I check up on how your funds are being used. Make a difference in this chaotic world!
Patoka UMC will once again observe Souper Bowl of Caring Sunday on February 5th – 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 5th and help us exceed last year’s totals – 482 ‘food items’ and 136 ‘other’.

FAT TUESDAY PANCAKE SUPPER: This year’s Fat Tuesday Pancake Supper is scheduled for February 28th 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 March 1st 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.

Winter Jam
Where: Evansville, IN at The Ford Center
When: Thursday, March 9, 2017
Starts: 7:00PM
Doors Open: 6:00PM
Cost: Only $10 at the door! No tickets required!
Artists include: Crowder, Britt Nicole, Tenth Avenue North, Sadie Robertson, Thousand Foot Kruch, Andy Mineo, Colton Dixon, Newsong, Tony Nolan, OBB, Sarah Reeves, Steven Malcolm
For More Information: Call 812-422-1515 or go to

DON’T FORGET TO SET CLOCKS FORWARD 1 hour before going to bed on Saturday, March 11th. Daylight Savings Time begins March 12th!

PATOKA UMC ENDOWMENT FUND: In the financial section of our bulletin, you see the “PUMC Endowment Fund” with a balance of $85,289.21. These funds are given by members & friends of PUMC. This fund is a great way to benefit the church, not only now but forever. The principle of this fund generates, at present, 4% interest annually to be used as we see fit. It is backed by the Lilly Foundation, conservatively invested, and managed by the Gibson Co. Community Foundation. Each of the 92 counties in Indiana has this (safe investment). If we had $100,000 in the fund, we would receive at least $4,000 annually for as long as the fund exists which should be a VERY, VERY long time. This fund would be an excellent choice for estate planning or giving now. If you have immediate questions, please contact me, Pastor Jeff.

• Pecans – Class #7 has pecans available – pieces and halves, as well as a wide variety of knives and kitchen items. Pecans can be purchased in the Family Life Center, thru any member of the class, or by contacting Marilyn Hudson at 779-5235.
• Meetings – All meetings, except Staff-Parish, are open to everyone in the congregation. [Feel free to contact any member of the Staff-Parish Committee at any time however, with concerns relevant to that committee.] All other meetings are open meetings. We invite you to come and participate in the business and ministries of the church. Committees and chairpersons are listed in the back of the Directory Book.
• Church 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 remember to sign the pew pads each Sunday morning with the names of each member of your family in attendance… and make sure your neighbor has signed also. We are glad to send bulletins/newsletters but strive to be good stewards by not sending mail unnecessarily. If you do not sign we assume you are not in attendance. It is also vital that you sign for accurate record keeping. The pew pads can also be used to list prayer requests that are spoken or unspoken during Worship. It only takes a minute to sign your name and pass the book to your neighbor.
• Web Site – Visit regularly for information. Also note that it is compatible with your phone! Calendar will be kept up to date, information on happenings, Sunday’s children’s program will be on the site, this and a lot more! If you would like to help maintain the web site, please let Pastor Jeff know.

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