Hope Free Press
November Newsletter  2016
In This Issue




Hope Church

Hope Free Church

Our vision is to be a church whose passion for God gives rise to a heart for the lost and is demostrated by our love for one another.


Thank You  


Martha Bald would like to thank the "very special angels" who have helped her with some things around her home.  She feels very blessed by the help that you have given her.



The 50 & Free campaign has become an exciting anticipation of seeing what God is going to do in and through the Hope Church family in the coming years. Now is the time for each of us to prayerfully seek "How" the Lord would have each one of us participate in this three-year stewardship journey.

We believe God has put this campaign in motion and desires us to faithfully complete the task of retiring Hope's mortgage.

On November 6, an all-church challenge will be given and everyone will be invited to participate. You will receive a comprehensive brochure of the 50 & Free campaign that will include a Commitment Card, a confidentially addressed envelope, and further instructions.

The Commitment Card is a tool to help you in your prayerful planning, and the total of all cards allows the church to make timely plans. Individual commitments will be confidential and seen by only a restricted few of the church finance team.

Thank you for your prayerful consideration and participation. May each of us be led by the Holy Spirit to be joyful givers to the Lord's work.

For Christ and His Church,
Ed Titcomb
Advance Commitment Team Leader,
50 & Free Campaign
Assistant Treasurer HEFC

  Senior Saints Luncheon
November 8, 2016

Greetings to you all in the name of Christ our King.

I would say: THANKSGIVING is the theme of November in our nation. I wonder about the number of turkeys that will be cooked on Thanksgiving Day!  Well, I hope you are looking forward to celebrating this day with family and friends. For our Senior Saints, we are having a Thanksgiving celebration on Tuesday, the 8th of November at lunch time. I had a word from the Chef and the team that they are ready to serve us with a delicious Thanksgiving lunch. The entertainment will be Glenda Linneman. So, you know what to do now my friend; call and reserve a spot so they can prepare enough turkeys for everyone!!

Friends, as a Christian, thanksgiving is not just an event sometime in November, it is also a lifestyle. A Christian should display this character in his/her life daily. We need to celebrate Thanksgiving to our God every day. He deserves it. May God's blessings be on you all as you celebrate Thanksgiving Day with family and friends.


support group
AWLS Luncheon
  (Awesome, Wise, Lively Singles Support Group)

DATE: Saturday, November 12, 2016
PLACE: Fireside Room, HEFC at 12:30 pm
MENU:   Soups, meatloaf sandwiches, salads, & dessert
RSVP: Sharon Vinson 815-623-6857 or 815-543-5644 (cell)
ACTIVITIES:   food, hymn singing, fellowship, and fun


Hope Church is providing free internet access for those in the building.
When you look for a wifi connection we are Hope-Guest. No password is necessary. During your initial use, you are presented with these parameters listed below and asked to accept. 

Terms of use for using the free Wi-Fi services
 *This service enables you (hereinafter referred to as "user") to use the Internet via Wifi for free.
*The user undertakes to refrain from any use, which could put public order and safety or morality at risk or which violates laws and molests or frightens other Internet users. The user in particular undertakes not to use this Internet access for file sharing programs. The user furthermore undertakes not to use the bandwidth excessively (e.g. for video streaming, Voice-Over-IP services, online gaming, etc.), since his/her Internet access is shared with other users. In case of violation of these conditions for use, Hope Church reserves the right to block individual and devices (e.g. laptops, notebooks, PDAs, etc.) for use of this WLAN network as well as certain ports.
*The user is familiar with the risks of the Internet, and he/she alone shall be responsible for his/her protection (e.g. an up-to-date anti-virus program, non-starting of suspicious programs/files, etc.). Hope Church will not accept any liability for faults, interferences or damages arising from using the Internet via the WLAN Service or configuration changes of the end device by the user. Hope Church does not guarantee that the service offered will be available without interruption and that the desired connections can always be established or maintained. Compensation of damages of any kind, including consequential damage of third parties and damage from claims of third parties, shall be excluded in any case as far as legally admissible.

Dear Hope Church family,
We live in an age and culture when everything has to be bigger and better. This attitude is not just in Apple stores and amusement parks, but in the thoughts and desires of the average person, including the average Christian. Even Christian writers speak this way, with books that have titles like Crazy Love and Radical, urging Christians to live out their Christian lives with a radical commitment to Jesus and the gospel.
Much of this is right and good, but I worry about the urge to be radical when in fact most of life, and certainly the most important parts of life, happen in the ordinary. That important time with your kids happens not at a concert but in your kitchen. That sacred moment with your spouse happens not in Paris but over pizza and a less-than-stellar movie. In a similar way, your spiritual life happens not in a "third-heaven" (2 Cor. 12:2) moment at Westminster Abbey but through the ordinary means of grace God established and long-practiced by faithful, Bible-believing churches of very ordinary people.
Scripture and experience show that God is pleased to do his greatest works in ordinary churches, situated in ordinary towns, filled with ordinary people, and led by ordinary leaders. It is in the ordinary that God most commonly works - not just in us but also through us. If anything is radical it is that the extra-ordinary God does his most mighty works through ordinary means in ordinary people. Let us not try to escape the ordinary, for it might just be that batch of dishes with your kids, or that pizza dinner with your spouse, or that ordinary Sunday service in your local, ordinary church where God shows you how radical he truly is.
For God's glory,
-Pastor Mickey



Introducing our Youth Pastor Candidate
Greg Lynas and family
wife, Beth   sons, Sam, Owen & Charlie

Greg Lynas has served in student ministry for almost 14 years, primarily within the EFCA.  He has a deep passion for teaching the Word in a way that makes the truth of scripture accessible to all, and draws people into deeper personal devotion in their own lives. He is very relationally driven in ministry and wants to see students shepherded at an individual heart level.  He cherishes these relational connections in the deep and challenging moments as well as the goofy relaxed times that are vital to forming genuine community. Greg has been married to Beth since 2001, and together they have 3 boys: Sam(2003), Owen(2007), and Charlie(2009).  They are excited about the opportunity to plug their family into our community and can't wait to meet the body here at Hope.

Opportunity for you, the congregation, to meet with our candidate, Greg Lynas
Saturday November 12, 2016
6 pm Meet and Greet with Congregation with a Q&A
In the Sanctuary
Sunday, November 13, 2016
Pastor Greg will preach both services.

He will have lunch with the youth and their families following services. Please let us know if you are planning on coming so food can be ordered accordingly. Circle the "L" on the friendship pad with how many from the family will be attending.
Our Congregational meeting, that was already scheduled for this Sunday, will begin at 5:00 pm and along with our regular agenda, we will take a vote to call Pastor Greg as our new Youth Pastor.

 Men of Hope
2016 Men's Retreat
  Believers in the Workplace
  Join us as Jeff Wagner takes us on an excursion through Daniel's career path from Babylon Inc. to the Persian Empire, LLC. See how God can use us in our individual places of work and how we can be a thriving believer in the midst of increasing marginalization of Christians in the workplace.
Friday, November 4
Registration 6:30 - 7:00 p.m.
Retreat begins at 7:00 p.m.
Saturday, November 5     
Nov. 5th, 8:30 - 2:00 p.m.
The book of Daniel is a story about a man who sees God's faithful provision through extraordinary trials during his career in his workplace.
Session 1:      Standing Under Duress
Session 2:      Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego - The Ultimate 
                      H.R. Problem
Session 3:      Nebuchadnezzar - The Ultimate Unreachable
Session 4:      Envy, jealousy and murder in the workplace
Jeff Wagner shares the truth of the gospel with a passion and hope that reaches the heart of the church and the souls of the unchurched. Jeff's style is filled with grace, humor and hope. He is an animated storyteller, who shares God's Word in an easy to understand and enjoyable format. You will be blessed by his message!

Women of Hope
Save the Date
A Christmas Collection
Dec. 3,   9am-Noon*     Cost-$10*
We are preparing a fun, entertaining and even educational morning for women. Ten or more presenters will provid 30 minute sessions on an array of topics such as Small Gifts to Make, a new Ornament for your tree, Foods, Art, Essential Oils, Inspirational Stenciling and more. Separating each session will be a 15 minute themed break; Cookies and Coffee, Small Bites with Punch; and Food Gifts to Share. Like last year each participant will receive a booklet with information from each presenter and recipes from the breaks.
The only difficulty for you is to choose which 3 classes to attend. Signups will be in the Narthex on Sundays in November on the 13th, 20th and 27th between and after services. We ask that you sign up for 5 classes in the order of your preference. By signing up early you have a better chance of getting into your top 3 choices. Begin thinking today about who you would like to bring. There won't be any registrations taken after the 27th for planning purposes.
*There is an invitation to this event that is circulating that says our time is 9-3 and the cost is $5. Please disregard this information.
DATE:  December 3 from 9-12
COST:  $10

White Cross Update
Sharon Vinson & Connie Ruden, Coordinators
What a harvest of girls' dresses and boys' shorts have been prepared for Operation Christmas Child these past few months. We have two more opportunities to complete dozens more to fill shoeboxes for children all over the world. We will be meeting on Tuesday, November 1, and Wednesday, November 2, to work on shorts & dresses. We will meet also on Tuesday, November 15, to work on our usual projects.
In addition, three plastic 35-gallon totes were sent on October 21 to Tandala Hospital and Clinics in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. These totes were filled with 271 layettes, 239 rolled bandages, 100 scripture cards, and some medical supplies. Our group gathers in Drake Hall from 8:30 to noon and always enjoys fellowship, food, and the satisfaction of serving others while we work side by side.

Needs this month:
    *Old blankets, mattress pads for inside of quilts
    *Flat sheets for quilt backs and/or rolled bandages
    *Fitted sheets for rolled bandages
    *Ideas for where we might get discarded sheets from a laundry to provide for bandages we tear each month
    *Single-Fold bias tape (any color) for kimonos
    *Ziploc GALLON STORAGE bags for layettes
    *Boxtops for Education & Campbell's Labels for Education (for local schools)

Just bring your scissors and your servant's heart and we'll teach you the rest.

Kids of Hope

smiling-blanket-baby.jpg Nursery& Pre-School
We need additional volunteers to cover the 3 worship services on Christmas Eve (2:00 & 4:00 PM) and Christmas Day (10:00 AM). If you are available to work one of the services, please call Caroline Ahlberg, Chris Fosler, or the church office.

Our AWANA Clubs are full of kids learning basic truths about God and memorizing His Word, all while having a LOT of fun. Praise God! With the flu season approaching we need a few more people on our substitute list. If you can help out occasionally call the church office to let us know and we will call you when you are needed.

Child Security
During the month of September, we transitioned the preschool area to a computerized check in system. The nurseries transitioned in October, followed by elementary. You have probably noticed the building modifications in the nursery and preschool areas. Thank you to everyone for their positive response and flexibility during these changes.
We are asking friends and relatives (except parents) of our children to stay OUT of the classrooms. We are also enforcing our policy of not releasing a child unless an authorized adult has the claim ticket. Please be assured that we are not trying to make life more difficult, we are trying to keep your children safe.
Staffing Needs
10:45 Worship for Kids is in need of a helper who can work every other month and a teacher
Both Preschool and Elementary areas need people who are willing to substitute.
Nursery and Preschool will need additional volunteers on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.

Call Vera at the church office if you are able to fill any of these needs

Kids HopeKids Hope USA
If you are looking for a ministry that impacts not only a child, but their entire family and the school; this is for you! Please contact the church office for more information and an application packet.
Please pray for our mentors as they meet weekly with the children. Several of the kids are experiencing difficult life changes that are adding stress to their days. Pray that they would be able to focus and learn even though life is very uncertain.
URGENT NEED: We have referrals for four boys, so we are specifically requesting male mentors.

Resource Center 
Christmas book tree
Look for us onFacebook! When you "like" Hope Resource Center, you'll be the first to receive updates about new arrivals and events. It's also a great place to give us feedback about what you're reading and what you'd like to see at the Resource Center.
Look for these resources on the New Arrivals shelf in November:
  • Relationships: 11 Lessons to Give Kids a Greater Understanding of Biblical Sexuality by Luke Gilkerson
  • When God Doesn't Fix It: Lessons You Never Wanted to Learn, Truths You Can't Live Without by Laura Story 
  • Waves of Mercy by Lynn Austin
  • Twilight at Blueberry Barrens(Sunset Cove #3) by Colleen Coble
  • The Curse of Crow Hollow by Billy Coffey
  • A Heart Most Certain (Teaville Moral Society #1) by Melissa Jagears
  • Secrets of a Charmed Life by Susan Meissner
  • The Raven by Mike Nappa
  • Chance of Loving You by Susan May Warren, Terri Blackstock, and Candace Calvert
  • God Gave Us Thankful Hearts by Lisa Tawn Bergren
  • Jonah and the Fish (Flipside Stories) by Dandi Daley Mackall
  • The Storm that Stopped: A True Story about Who Jesus Really Is by Alison Mitchell
  • John Wesley: The World His Parrish by Geoff & Janet Benge (ages 8+)
  • The Secret Keeper: The Delicate Power of Modesty by Dannah Gresh (ages 12+) 
  • Hope (Iesodo series)
  • Chonda Pierce: Laughing in the Dark
  • The Biggest Story: How the Snake Crusher Brings Us Back to the Garden

Thank you to those that helped with the Operation Christmas Child Prep Work Day! We are now all geared up and excited for the Shoebox Packing Party which will take place on Saturday, November 12th at 9:30am. Please join us for a fun morning of serving! Every age group is encouraged to attend, but please remember that children under 12 yrs old must be with an adult and their packing must be supervised by that adult. We will have a brief presentation, along with instructions for packing, promptly at 930am. We will pack shoeboxes until we no longer have enough items to pack well-rounded boxes.
     There is a table display in the lobby where you can pick up a list of needed items for the Packing Party. Please pay special attention to the most needed essential items on the list which have green astericks next to them. Please put all donations in the collection barrel next to the table by Sunday, November 6th. If you forget, you may also bring donations to the Packing Party on the 12th! You may also donate cash or a check made out to Hope, for bulk items that will be ordered online. There are tags on the donation board in the lobby for these items. We are also collecting money to ship the shoeboxes....it costs $7 per box to send them overseas. There is a shipping donation jar on the table in the church lobby as well. Those checks should be made out to Samaritans Purse directly....cash is fine too.
     There are also empty shoeboxes, labels, and "All About Me" coloring pages at the table in the lobby, for those that wish to pack a shoebox of their own at home. Please return those to church no later than Nov. 20th.
     Thank you for your generous support of this ministry!

Grief Share
Your Journey from mourning to JOY...
GriefShare is a network of support groups meeting around the world. It is a program with direction and purpose. With GriefShare you will learn how to walk the journey of grief and be supported on the way. It is a place where grieving people find healing and hope.
Hope Church is starting up a GriefShare Group on Wednesdays beginning January 11, 2017 at 1:30 pm here at Hope. Please watch for more information to come.

Mission Update  
On Tuesday evening, October 25th, Dave Russell and Doug Weber of SonSet Solutions were in Rockford to meet with supporters from area churches. David Russell is one of the missionaries supported by Hope EFC through the Missions Board during his service with HCJB Global. David Russell joined the multi-generational team from Hope EFC on the short term mission trip to the Dominican Republic, and David also took a team from Hope EFC to Puerto Rico to perform maintenance on a Christian radio station.
For thirty years, SonSet Solutions existed as the HCJB World Radio Engineering Center of HCJB World Radio. Two years ago, SonSet Solutions became a stand-alone 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization , while HCJB Global became Reach Beyond. David Russell now serves as the President of SonSet Solutions, leading a staff of missionaries and volunteers that includes engineers working on a variety of technological projects.
SonSet Solutions seeks technological solutions to advance the Gospel in regions around the world where travel and communication are complicated and difficult. They have provided and supported local radio stations programming Christian content, along with "fix-tuned" radio receivers that are exclusively programmed to receive the signals from their local Christian radio stations. To date, SonSet Solutions has distributed over 46,000 radio receivers around the world.
SonSet Solutions has continued to develop radio systems to report on the function of water wells in remote locations, allowing organizations that maintain those wells to more quickly respond to needed repairs. As mobile phones have proliferated, even in remote areas, SonSet Solutions is working to use that technology to provide evangelism and discipleship resources. They are producing and installing solar-powered media centers providing multiple resources to remote users including charging stations and WiFi hotspots to distribute content to those devices as radio has been used in the past.
SonSet Solutions provides opportunities to contribute to their ministry through prayer, volunteering, and financial support. They also have opportunities for internships and apprenticeships. For more information about this ministry they can be followed on social media, or visiting their Website at www.sonsetsolutions.org. The Hope EFC Missions Board can also provide more information to learn about or contact SonSet Solutions.

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Youth Ministries
We had fun at Laser Quest last weekend with 40 teens attending. Thanks for inviting your friends!

Mark your calendars for the upcoming Game Night on November 13 during Youth Group. Invite your friends for an evening of fun, food and games. 

COMING SOON: WinterXtreme retreat
WinterXtreme Retreat for Junior High:        January 20-22
WinterXtreme Retreat for Senior High:        January 27-29
Cost: $100 per teen.
We have reserved spots for both retreats but they are filling up fast. We will fill them on a first come, first served basis and if we need more spots, we will see if there are any left - but many of the weekends are already full so we are reserving spots in the two weekends listed above. Please contact a youth leader or Pastor Brad ASAP to register your teen for an exciting weekend. 

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