Temple Bells
 January
2020
  The mission and ministries of First Christian Church are to share the Good News of Jesus Christ by being instruments of God’s unconditional love and grace for all people. We live and practice Jesus’ command to “love one another as you would love yourself.” We are a dynamic and diverse congregation and would like to invite you to become a part of our church family.
    
215 South Congress Ave. West Palm Beach Fl. 33409
    Phone 561-683-881 
Bible study for all ages  Sunday 9:00
     Worship Service     Sunday 10:15

Wednesday night Bible Study
See online Calendar for dates
6-7:30 pm


By Rev. Donn Brammer

In the movie, “Men In Black,” Agent Kay played by Tommy Lee Jones, speaks to Jay played by Will Smith: “1500 years ago, everybody ‘knew’ that the earth was the center of the universe. 500 years ago, everybody ‘knew’ that the earth was flat. And 15 minutes ago, you ‘knew’ that humans were alone on this planet. Imagine what you'll ‘know’ tomorrow.”

As we come into a New Year there will be new opportunities for us to learn. We will learn more about our world, about each other, and about ourselves. Some of what we discover will be fascinating, and some of it may be disgusting. Some of what we learn may happen by accident and some of what we learn will be by hard work and intention.

One of the things I’ve learned in my life is the different way and different speed people learn. Rick or Howard can learn a new song in a minute. Me not so much. Some people are great at learning, they are ‘one and done-ers’: they read it, see it, hear it one time and they know it. I’m in the slower group, in fact there are some things that I don’t think I’m ever going to learn. I’ve been wanting to speak Spanish since the 5th grade; I’ve been wanting to be a musician since the 3rd grade; and I’ve been wanting to be an athlete all my life.

Of course there are some lessons that are life-long lessons. We learn how to be a Christian our whole lives, it’s not a ‘one and done’ lesson. We don’t ever graduate, we keep on learning because we keep on growing: growing in our faith, growing in our spiritual maturity, growing closer to God.

Part of what we learn in a life of faith is that the Christian life is a living dynamic that causes us to change the way we think, speak, and act, and sometimes results in changing other people, changing our culture, or maybe even changing the world, but for sure changing ourselves as we grow and mature in our faith.

Sometimes we are tempted to substitute information for transformation. Knowledge is important, a lot of damage has been done by Christians who lack knowledge, but it is important for us to not stop just with knowledge. For example, one of my goals when I teach is not to just give historical, cultural, and textual information, that’s the easy part, that’s informational. It’s safe.

What’s hard is the transformational part, trying to see a Bible passage in a different perspective. In our classes I try not to give answers, as much as to give tools to help us wrestle with the passage and how it applies to our life. As I like to say, I think it’s a good class when we leave with more questions than when we came in. Just like a muscle, our faith gets stronger when we ‘work out’ and wrestle with a text.

As we begin a New Year I invite us to look with imagination the ways God is working to transform us. Think about what we ‘know’ now, and imagine what we may ‘know’ by the end of the year. God Bless


Rudy Nieves joined our congregation on November, 10, 2019. He is a good friend of Stacey Sofoul and Stacey invited Rudy to worship with us and Rudy did and quickly began participating in many of our ministries. Rudy lives at 4671Orlando Ave., WPB, FL 33417; Ph. (561) 818-0150; his birthday is 11/26.

Marjorie Mott officially joined our congregation on December 1, 2019. She has been so active in our congregation, we thought she was already a member! Her directory information is in the church directory.

Everyone is welcome 
Come as you are, we a re a friendly bunch of loving Christians who invite you to worship with us!

Please stay a while after the service for a little snack and fellowship.

You're welcome here!!!

1/5

(Star Sunday)
Jeremiah 31:7-14
Psalm 147:12-20
Ephesians 1:3-14
John 1:(1-9), 10-18
Matthew 2:1-12
(Text which will be read before members share their ‘star’ testimonies)

1/12

(Baptism of the Lord; Installation and Ordination
of Elders and Deacons)

Isaiah 42:1-9
Psalm 29
Acts 10:34-43
Matthew 3:13-17
(Sermon Text: “It Begins With Baptism”)

1/19
(Shepherding Sunday)
Isaiah 49:1-7
Psalm 40:1-11 (Sermon Text: “OK Is Not OK”)
1 Corinthians 1:1-9
John 1:29-42

1/26

Isaiah 9:1-4
Psalm 27:1, 4-9
1 Corinthians 1:10-18
Matthew 4:12-23
(Sermon Text: “Jesus Is Not Looking For Volunteers”)



You are Needed! Many of us assume that our children ministry can get by without our assistance but that is not the case. Currently our Worship and Wonder program is in need of adults to serve as Greeters and Story Tellers. Training is provided. See the Next Announcement! Please see Diana Brammer for more information.
 
We will be hosting a Children’s Worship and Wonder Training (led by the Region and/or General Church staff) on Fri. Feb. 28 and Sat. Feb. 29 (Yep, this year is a ‘leap year’). One of the benefits is we are eligible to have 5 of our members trained or re-trained for free and we are especially in need of storytellers. Please see Diana if you are interested in serving in this important ministry.

365 Bible Readings Please remember do NOT unsubscribe if you do not want to participate; simply delete that day’s reading. Thank you.

C.R.O.S. (Christians Reaching Out to Society) Ministries: Thank you for your faithful contributions to the food pantry. Please remember food can be placed in the designated area in the Narthex. Many of you make good use of the BOGO (Buy One Get One free) offers. Thank you!

Gift Cards: Gift cards are still being sold for all kinds of occasions! You can buy some cards today or if you want a card we don’t have on hand (there are over 1,000 retailers to choose from), you can order the card today and it will be ready for you to pick up the next Sunday. See Ellen or Janice at the table and they will help you fill out forms and answer questions. Each card gives the church a certain percentage, but you get the full value! Thanks for your support!

Fellowship Table If you would like to host our Fellowship Table that we enjoy after the worship services on Sundays, please sign up on the sheet provided in the Fellowship Hall.

Prayer Chain Warriors: We have a dedicated group of people who pray every day not only for the church and its ministries, but also for friends and families who are in need of healing, comfort, guidance, and strength. Members are notified through email and are given daily (sometimes more) updates and each week a Prayer List with all of our concerns are listed. If you would like to be a part of this ministry, please give Donn your email address and let him know. Thank you.

Temple Bells Newsletter is online. For those who do not have internet access a few printed copies are available in the foyer.

Change for Change: Put your loose change to good use! Bring it to church and place it in the
“Change for a Change” container located in the Narthex. This money will be used for the re-roofing and remodeling projects of the church.

Fellowship Table If you would like to host our Fellowship Table that we enjoy after the worship services on Sundays, please sign up on the sheet provided in the Fellowship Hall.

Van Drivers are needed for Sunday mornings to pick up worshipers at the Fountainview (next door to the Christian Manor), the Christian Manor and on Spencer Drive, and take them back after worship. You do not need a special license, but you do need a driver’s license. Drivers serve 1 month at a time. Please see Donn if you can help with this ministry.
 
Worship Leader and Greeter Sign Up A sign-up sheet is posted on the bulletin board between the offices. Please sign up if you would like to serve in this way.

Regional News



Hope In Hard Places

In the dark winter months, as people of faith, we seek light and life in that darkness, trusting that God is giving shape to new life even when we can’t yet see it. We are also called to actively embody that hope. As the Church, we offer hope to others who are living through dark times. The work that you support through Week of Compassion reflects the hope, peace, joy and love of this season in tangible ways. Here are just a few of the places that hope travels through some of our recent responses.

Since 2018, Week of Compassion has been responding to the Ebola epidemic in the Democratic Republic of the Congo through our partners. One of the responses, through LWF/IMA World Health, was meant to provide direct assistance to families that had lost loved ones and were now struggling to survive and meet basic needs. But our local partners faced unexpected challenges. They found that those with the greatest need were often targeted by others in the community. There is still a great deal of fear and misinformation surrounding the disease, and so families who have experienced a loss are often alienated from their neighbors. This means that our partners can’t always identify families in need of assistance; and also means they have to be careful and confidential with the support they are able to deliver, so as not to cause further strife for these struggling families.

Committed to providing relief in spite of those obstacles, our partners determined that the best way to offer help is to work through local churches where they maintain close connections. This way, they avoid drawing attention to those who need assistance, thus ensuring that “the help will not be harmful,” and that support will reach those who need it most. 

Week of Compassion collaborates and works within our partners’ structures, communicating with those who best understand the needs and have the most effective means of distributing resources. By using our partners’ strength, we ensure that our response will have meaningful impact, while empowering leaders in the local community. Your support is a sign of hope to those in desperate need.

While some recover from illness, others begin to rebuild from disaster. We are responding to needs in the wake of Typhoon Hagibis through our partners in Japan. With winter weather approaching, and more than 700 people still living in emergency shelters, the needs are urgent. Commercial repair could take up to six months, so the response of our partners is critical for vulnerable families, like those with disabled family members and those without disaster insurance. While this work is still in early stages, we are committed to supporting long-term recovery in the area as well as helping to meet immediate needs.    
Week of Compassion works through a global network of partners so that our church can respond to critical needs like these, even in far-away places. The love and compassion that you share reflects hope around the world, around the year. We give thanks for partners --close to home and around the world-- that make it possible for our wider church respond to urgent needs like this. And we give thanks for you, whose love gives light to places of darkness. Through Week of Compassion, Disciples’ presence and witness travels beyond our sanctuary walls, beyond our borders, beyond even the traditional season of giving and gratitude-- touching lives and sharing hope. Thank you.

This year our Week of Compassion offering will be collected on Sundays Feb. 16 and 23.




There are a tremendous amount of events happening this month, please click below to see our list of important dates and events




Thank you for your generosity in providing essential cleaning and household supplies for Migrant Families. We collected enough supplies to fill an entire cargo van and Angela (our contact person who picks up the supplies to deliver them to the families in the Belle Glade area) was overcome with joy and gratitude. Thank you for your gifts!

Thank you fo hosting the Adopt A Family Christmas Party . Your regular offerings throughout the year help to make sure that not only do we have a place to worship, study, and fellowship, but it also provides a place for other ministries and missions such as Adopt A Family. A gift room is set up for children to ‘buy’ (i.e. a few coins) gifts for their parents and siblings. A gift wrap area is set up for them to wrap their gift with assistance from volunteers. There is a craft area set up to make decorations. A hot dog lunch is served. And of course Santa visits and they have their picture taken with Santa and are handed a gift that has been specifically selected for them. This year over 300 children were blessed! Thank you!

Thank you for your continuing support of CROS (Christians Reaching Out to Society) Food Pantry. While it is exciting to give gifts at Christmas time, your regular donations every week help to provide food for families throughout the year. Thank you, your gifts make a difference.

Thank you from Donn, Howard, and Rick, for your thoughtfulness, cards, gifts, and bonus! Each of us feel deeply blessed to share in ministry with you. You are a blessing to us! Thank you!
Stay in Touch with Rev. Cindy

Cinthia James
Calle Batalla de Salado 34
Esq izq 1 A
28045 Madrid Spain

Email her at 

revcindy2008@gmail.com

 Text or call her on WhatsApp

and look for her soon on Facebook!





Disciples Women are on the move!!!
Working together as women of faith

  

By Candy Hansen

2020 – not just a New Year but a new decade. That seems especially significant to me this year. A formidable line drawn in the sands of time. 

This past year has held the best and the worst. The best, hands down, the birth of my grandson, Eli. Along with the continuing antics of his ‘big’ sister and cousins:

- two-year-old Zoey is very protective of her little brother. If you’re holding him, she better know you. She didn’t know jolly old St. Nick. Melt down in Santa land! 

- three-year-old Sebastian has very definite ideas about the naughty & nice list.  Better not to know where he would put Grandma (:

-     one-year-old Jude is spending Christmas in Australia. After a 20-hour plane ride, Mom let him stand on the window seat as they touched down. His little silhouette backlit, his hand pressed against the glass, he was reminiscent of ET and probably felt like him.    

God’s blessed gifts keeping the worst in perspective. Yes, an upcoming year of restoring balance, re-evaluating priorities, assessing new directions. In short, a major shakeup called for . . .

I haven’t felt like cooking in a long time. Thanks to my kids, Kristi and Kory, I have been well supplied with delicious freezer meals.  But I’ll have to get back in practice for the Taste Across America Dinner on February 9. States represented will be: Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Louisiana, New York and North Carolina. Be on the lookout for our ticket table.

Some potentially useful words of New Year wisdom:

*                        What the New Year brings will depend on what you bring to it.

*                        Stay committed to your decision, but flexible in your approach.

*                                         You’re never too old to reinvent yourself.

*                            Dreams of the future are better than the history of the past.


Please join our NEXT GENERAL MEETING: February 23.

 

                                                           
                                                                                                         
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
DISCIPLES WOMEN GROUPS
Fine Clay / led by Candy Hansen
Meets 3rd Thursday at 6:30 pm in Fellowship Hall

Grace / led by Beth Gillespie - Meeting Times Vary

Sojourner Sisters / led by Claudia Schwenk and Norma Ann Chattin
Meets 2nd Thursday of the Month at 2:00 pm in Fellowship Hall

If you are interested in joining a Disciples Women Group, please contact any of the above group leaders or
DW President Gloria Hambright
Please "Like" us !
      Stay in touch with us on Facebook, see updates, announcements, events and so much more !!!
 
When the service is over
   don't go.... 
hang with us for a while
After the service joins us in the fellowship hall for some refreshments and some conversation. Meet someone new, ask questions and chat with our Minister.

Visitors are more than welcome so please... stay a while
  

At times, we all could use someone walking along beside us, praying for us, supporting and encouraging us. We want to provide the opportunity for you to do just that! We would love for you to feel free to post your requests on the wall or if you feel more comfortable, you can keep your request confidential and our staff will pray for you.

 It is privilege for us to support one another during difficult times, and we want to thank those of you who are faithfully praying for others!

Remember to share those praises as well!


  Need Directions to get here ?
Lost?  

Find your way !

( yes, we know this might
have two meanings)

 


January Birthdays

1       Scott Del Mastro
3       Sharon Hambright Layton
3       Nicole Richardson
6       Lisa Moore
6       Elizabeth Pilot
7       Cove Lyon
10     JoAnne Lyon
11     Amy Young
13     Kristen Lagasse
14     Justin Ramich
19     Jamie Kite
21     Karla Del Castillo
22     Charlie Branch
23     Andreus Brammer
23     Karen Conklin
25     Celia Moore
29     Gloria Hambright


February Birthdays
2       Drew Marshall
3       Liz Youngs
5       Paris Horne
9       Patsy McClain
10     Reeves King
16     Stacey Sofoul
17     Daniel Ysaguirre
18     Dewayne Kelley
19     Marjorie Mott
22     Glenn Kelley
22     Joe Likavec
24     Ed Trauschke
25     Tyler Groelle
27     Joan Smith
27     Baron Thomas
28     Marie Derthick
28     Marguerite Owens





January
Anniversaries
1       Debi and Bobby Dahl
7       Mari Guzman and Melissa Holmes

February
Anniversaries
17     Loretta and Rick Rossano
21     Cheryl Baylor
and Stephen Ramich


Note from the Scholarship Committee 
The Scholarship Committee is proud to announce the first series of scholarships given to members of our congregation who are pursuing educational goals beyond the high school diploma.
We are pleased that our church has made this possible and would like to thank those of you who have donated for your donations to the scholarship fund.
For those who would like to donate, please include your donation amount along with your weekly tithe and designate the amount on your check/envelope. As always, we support our congregation in love.
 

   Every Monday at First Christian Church 
( rooms 1-2)

7:00 pm- NA Courage to change group (open discussion)
8:30m - AA-Twelve & Twelve Group (closed discussion)


 


Be a movie Star!!!


As a part of our upcoming Facebook strategy to reach over 1,500 people , we will be accumulating video testimonials for sharing from members, visitors and from Donn and Cindy.

 Please let Stacey know if you would like to share you story of how Jesus has changed your life, what our Church means to you , or any other interesting and compelling story that you think would be helpful to others.

Go ahead, share your story...It just might change someones life!!
 
Be a Prayer Warrior
Every day a faithful group from our congregation pray for those who request and are in need of prayers
 
 
  ONLINE NOW !