The Disciple Newsletter
In This Issue
March Schedules
Online Giving
Ingles Cards
Susanna Wesley Circle
A Message from Wes
Youth News
Children's Ministry
Music Ministry
Bridal Shower
Stephen Minister
Howell's Newsletter
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Schedule for 2017 Community Lenten Services:
March 8 -    First Baptist
March 15 -  Bald Creek                                UMC
March 22 -  Micaville Pres
March 29 -  Higgins UMC 
April 5 -      First Pres 
March Schedules

Mar. 5   Renee Weeks

Mar. 12   Becca Leadbitter
Mar.19  John & Suzette                   Renfro

Mar. 26 Fran Maresh

Mar. 5 
John & Mary Nelson
Mar. 12 Virginia Ray
Mar. 19  Bob Drummond
Mar. 26  Garland & Mary                 Ann Wampler 

Scripture Readers Sanctuary Service
Mar. 5   Jack Myers
Mar. 12  Nancy Williams
Mar. 19  Bunnie McIntosh
Mar. 26  David Cort

Youth Dinner
Mar. 5   Jeanne Tyner
Mar. 12  Wade & Amy                    Shehan
Mar. 19  Peirce & Deena                  Bingham
Mar. 26  Michele Lawhern

Altar Guild 
Mary Nelson  682-9119
Mary Tom Aldridge
Online Giving is
Now Available!
Higgins is offering online giving through EasyTithe!

Try it now, online or through the mobile app!
Please contact the office or send us an email if you have any questions.
Ingles Gift Cards!
Purchase Ingles Cards and 5% of the face value goes directly to Missions. It doesn't cost you anything extra! (If you order a $100 card, $5 will go directly to Missions and you still have $100 purchasing power). It can be used for anything at Ingles including GAS. See Stewart and Rebecca Leadbitter after Celebration service at the Welcome Desk. Sanctuary service participants please drop by the Welcome Desk before Sunday School. Thank you!  
Volunteer Opportunities
We would love to have some more volunteers for "Greeters" and/or "Scripture Readers" for the 11:00 service. Please call the office if you are interested.

If you can help with snacks on Sunday mornings,  please contact Sharon Honeycutt at
The Susanna Wesley Circle
The Susanna Wesley Circle will meet on Tuesday, March 14th at 9:30 a.m. in the FLC.  Elaine Dellinger will be in charge of the program.  Hostesses are Bunnie McIntosh and Phyllis Patterson.  All ladies are welcome! 
Some of the Higgins family may have moved, but they are still in our hearts. Send them well wishes!

Ms. Libby Hammond
6500 Gaines Ferry Rd, G5
Flowery Branch, GA 30542
ph: 678-886-7805

Zach & Cori Howell
10126 Ballyclare Ct.
Charlotte, NC 28213

Bev Hunsucker 
209 Hatfield Drive
Franklin, TN 37064
Cell: 828 230-1787

Sam & Ethel Nash
3066 Point Clear Drive
Tega Cay, SC 29708

Emily Sigmon
Furman PMB 29396
3300 Poinsett Highway
Greenville, SC 29613

Mat Sigmon
6 Smythe Street, 3rd
Brookline MA 02445
Low-impact Aerobics class on Monday mornings at 9:00 a.m. for older adults.  It is free!!!  Contact Teri Darnall at 208-1904 for more info
Volunteers Needed to Visit Shut-ins
     Higgins has a growing number of shut-ins who would greatly benefit from your visit. They are often adjusting to one of the following changes: living alone following the death of a spouse, maybe their adjusting to living in a care facility, some may have more pressing health issues and in general they just need a friendly face who will take the time to sit down and have a cup of coffee, just talk, have a devotion or prayer time together and just simply care!
   The word of God directs us to visit those in need. If you feel you would enjoy spending time with one of them, please prayerfully consider contacting either Elaine Dellinger at the 11 o'clock service {PH 682-74524} or Nancy Smith (284-6142) at the 8:30 service to sign up.
You may be surprised that you receive the greater uplifting in spirit by the time you leave them.

"In addition to visits, Higgins will also be serving communion to the home bound or anyone in the community that would like it brought to them the first Sunday of every month. If you'd like to add anyone to the list, be added or would like more info. Contact Deena Bingham (828)208-2377."
Sunday Night Bible Study

 The young women's study, Finding I Am, by Lysa TerKreust will be postponed until early fall, 2017 for young women 20-35. The Sunday evening time period was inconvenient for the young women who had expressed interest.

The Lord has put on my heart to study 1 Peter.  It is from this epistle that we hear terms like "born again", "pure milk of the word", and the verse:  "Be of sober spirit, be on the alert.  Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour."
This time you will not purchase a book, but I will send you questions through your email to print out and complete before we meet.  In class we will discuss the questions and see a teaching DVD by Wayne Barber.  He is an excellent teacher who adds humor to his presentations.  Classes will begin Tuesday night, March 14th, at 6:30, and Wednesday morning, March 15th, at 10:00, both in the classroom in the Higgins Family Life Center.  There is no cost, other than printing out your questions.  The class will last 12 weeks, ending May 30 and 31.  If you know someone who would like to join us, but has no computer/email, let them know about the class and tell them I will print out lessons for them.
Since I will be putting together the questions, please pray that the Lord will use me for Him and for all of us.  If you are interested in learning more from God's Word in 1 Peter, please respond to this email so I can put you on my list to receive questions.  Until then, read through 1 Peter to get an idea of what we will be covering.
Hope to hear from all of you soon.
For Him,
Jan (

March 2017
Our Vision

Jesus tells us in Matthew 22:37-40, "You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets."

As the group of believers that meets in the building known as Higgins Memorial UMC, what does that look like?

We love and serve the Lord with all that we are. We live our lives in worship to Him, through serving Him, using the gifts He gave us when He welcomed us as members of His family and joined us to the Body of Christ. (Luke 4:8; John 4:23, Romans 12:5-8, 1 Corinthians 12:12-31). He prepares us for His work through the study of His Word, fellowship with one another, and prayer - equipping us, so that we may accurately speak the truth in love and act in love (Acts 2:42, John 13:35, Ephesians 4:11-16, 2 Timothy 2:15). We fulfill the purpose He has for our lives by acting in God's power, not our own (Luke 24:49, Acts 2:1-4, Titus 2:11-12, Matthew 11:28-29).

As members of His Body, we are driven by God's heart for others so that our hearts are changed (John 13:34-35, Romans 8:5, Ephesians 5:2, 1 Corinthians 13:4-8). We love our neighbors as we love ourselves (Luke 10:25-37). We partner with and involve other churches (Hebrews 10:24-25, Ephesians 4:4, Colossians 1:18).Together, we go out into the community to reach the lost (Matthew 28:18-20, Mark 16:15). Together, we serve the hungry and unsafe; youth, particularly those with inactive or absent parents; the homebound; those struggling in poverty; those who feel unloved; and those who don't have biblical understanding (Galatians 6:2). We are a sanctuary for all, just as He is our Sanctuary (Jeremiah 17:12, Psalm 46:1, Psalm 28:7).
The Wessage
A Message from Wes

Spiritual Habits.
Lent is the season of intentional Spiritual Change.  It is a time to lay something down.  And it is the time to pick up something new.  Lay down something that is old, stale, worn out or trouble-some.  Pick up something that will bring with it new life, new energy, renewed Spiritual vitality.
One of the books that I highly recommend to everyone is The Power of Habit by the well awarded Pulitzer business writer and reporter Charles Duhigg.  His book is one of the few books I have read through twice literally cover to cover --- every page!  And soon will reread again.   Duhigg shows us by way of the new revelations of brain science how to start new habits and how to change old habits.  (His book is not a Christian book.  But his book has applications in our spiritual lives.)
Once a habit is formed - the brain automatically enacts the habit, and carries us in the pattern of the habit.  Now the brain is neutral.  It will carry us down the road of positive habits and negative habits.  Did you know that you can end old habits that stand between you and a fresh move of God's Holy Spirit in your life?  And did you know you can start new habits that open your life to a closer experience with God's Spirit?  Lent is a great time to lay down the old or harmful and pick up some new, life giving Spiritual Practice.
For me the book Celebrating Disciplines by Richard Foster is a great resource.  There are copies of this book in our church library for you to check out and use.  Foster reminds of practices that many other Christians have found helpful in growing closer to God across many centuries.  And helps us think of refreshed ideas of the Disciplines.  
I am planning to establish a weekly fast during Lent this year. Yes, a period of giving up food for 24 hours.  Noon one day till supper the next.  But there are some of us who would find it helpful to fast from media, social media, electronics, noise, or other intrusions into our lives.  This is a fresh new way to follow the call to fast.
Last Spring, God reminded me of my lost practice of Centering Prayer.  Centering Prayer is a time of focus on the presence of God - sitting in God's presence without words.  I find it helpful to focus on a single word or phrase so that if I get distracted I can use the "Focus Word" to bring my wandering mind back to God.   One of these word phrases is: "Holy Father."
So I sit 3 or 4 times a week from 20 to 30 minutes in silence in the focused presence of God.   This renewed Spiritual Practice opened up for me an amazing awareness of God's presence in my life.  And Centering Prayer brought to me more trust in God.  And the anxiety in my life dropped dramatically.   And what I gave up.  Watching politics on TV.  And really watching much news at all on TV.  I stayed informed.  But I don't consume endless TV news.  I laid down lots of negative thoughts.  And I picked up more of awareness of God in my life and God in the world.
Lent is a time to lay something down.  Lent is a time to pick something up.
Start a new Spiritual Habit.  See what God will bring to your life and faith journey.
In His Grip Forever,
Pastor Wes
Youth News
Youth Jumping
As you may know, Higgins Youth recently participated in World Vision's 30-Hour Famine. We raised enough funds to feed roughly 30 children for a month!! One child for every hour we fasted!! Thank you for your prayers and generous donations!
The experience opened our eyes to several truths. We learned about ourselves, the world, and how to put the love of Christ into action.
We live in a society where we have almost everything we want. We have an abundance of products, entertainment, food, etc. This can leave us thinking we don't have a need for anything more. We can start to think we need these things, that we can't live without them. The only thing that we truly need is Jesus. The only thing that can and will fill that void is Jesus. The other things can be good, but can also distract us from Him and our purpose.
In Matthew 19:24, Jesus says, "Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich person to enter the kingdom of God." The "poor" in America are rich compared to a majority of the world. Living a mere 30 hours without food opened our eyes to the way the majority of the world lives. We slept on the floor in sleeping bags or on blankets, which to some was the worst night's sleep they'd experienced. This was still more comfortable than the way many around the world live - on a dirt floor, not much separating them from the elements.
We took the Youth out on the square with signs to raise awareness of and money for the hungry. We got to witness two main responses. Those of us that stayed on the square witnessed people avoiding eye-contact, choosing to stay in the safety and unawareness of their own bubbles... in this case, their cars. Those of us that ventured out to the streets and into the shops couldn't be avoided. We got to enter into people's personal spaces. And they welcomed us. They rejoiced that our Youth were taking on something larger than themselves. Many gladly gave all they had, even with tears. Not only did our Youth raise money to change the lives of people they will never meet, they changed the lives of people they did meet by stepping out in faith.
This is a wonderful example of sharing the Gospel. The good news is personal. Jesus told us to go into all the world and preach the Gospel. He came to "seek and save the lost." He asks us to do the same. He tells us to come to Him as we are. Romans 10:14 tells us, "How, then, can they call on the One they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the One of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them?" Yes, it can be uncomfortable to share your faith.
How will they know, comfortable Christian, if you do not leave the comfort of your pew, the comfort of your home, and tell them? How will they know the love of Christ if you do not meet them where they are to show it? How will they be set free from the lie that they have all they need if you don't share the true freedom that comes by believing in the only One that can provide it?
Children's Ministry
A Message from Kim

Easter is becoming a forgotten holiday.  Christmas we celebrate for months - decorating our houses and planning parties and buying each other gifts.  Easter sneaks up on us, while we are making plans for our summer.  But Easter is THE most important Christian holiday.  We need to resurrect Easter as the wonderful, powerful reminder of Jesus' death and Resurrection and what it means for us and others.  The early church established the season of Lent (from the Latin meaning "lengthening of days") so that we, as Jesus' followers, would spend 40 days a year, reminding ourselves and one another, of our need for the forgiveness that was bought for us on the cross by the poured out life of Jesus.
When the very first people, Adam and Eve, believed the lie of the enemy instead of the truth of God, they brought sin into the world.  Sin broke everything - their relationship with God and with each other and even with themselves and the beautiful world God had created for them to enjoy.  Conviction of sin - or own, real sin - is the first step in realizing we need a Savior.  Because Adam and Eve turned away from God and His love and we are the descendants of Adam and Eve, we are broken people.  We are born self-centered and selfish, wanting our own way.  We are lovers of ourselves and not lovers of God.
Jesus came to put the pieces of our brokenness back together.  His Resurrection means we can be resurrected - made new and whole and alive! He wants to make us lovers of God and each other, which happens when we realize and accept how much Jesus loves us! Easter helps us realize that!
So let's resurrect the Lenten season and celebrate Easter as THE most important Christian holiday!
This evening, March 1st at 5:00 please join us for an intergenerational, interactive Ash Wednesday service to begin the season of Lent.
Recommended Family Resources for Lent
Subscribe to Jellytelly online and watch the series What's in the Bible with Buck Denver together as a family.  There are 26 episodes.  Each one lasts about 30 minutes.  Read the book 40 Reasons to Trust God by Diane Stortz together as a family.  The chapters are very short.  It won't take longer than 10 minutes to use this book each day for family devotions.
Other recommended resources for family devotions:
Younger Kids (or family read-alouds):
  • The Jesus Storybook Bible by Sally Lloyd-Jones
  • The Ology: Ancient Truths Ever New by Marty Machowski
  • The Biggest Story: How the Snake Crusher Brings Us Back to the Garden by Kevin DeYoung 
Older kids & teens (or family read-alouds):
  • Amon's Adventure: A Family Story for Easter by Arnold Ytreeide
  • Old Story New by Marty Machowski ( This is a devotional.  Read the first 26 chapters before Easter)
  • Vinegar Boy:  by Alberta Hawse
  • The Bronze Bow by Elizabeth George Speare
Music Ministry
A Message from Andrea

For four Wednesdays in March, Trinity Episcopal Church, Spruce Pine will host a series of noonday concerts followed by lunch entitled Bach's Lunch.  Each concert will begin at 12:05 and will last 30 minutes.  The purpose of Bach's Lunch is to give the community an opportunity to stop and relax during the work week.  The concerts and lunch are free to the public.
We are very excited about the performers in our series.  The first concert will be March 8, 2017 with Trinity's organist and choirmaster, Robert P. Bell, III, will play a concert featuring works of Johann Sebastian Bach, Felix Mendelssohn, Johannes Brahms, and Herbert Howells.  Robbie studied at the University of South Carolina School of Music and has held organ and choirmaster positions in North and South Carolina and Florida.
The series will continue on  March 15 with the Choir of Trinity Church.  The choir will sing music from the 15th century to the 20th century with music of Pitoni, Arcadelt, Thomas Tallis, W. A. Mozart, and Ned Rorem. 
The third week of Bach's Lunch,  March 22, will feature Rhonda Gouge and Roan Mountain Rain.  They will give the listeners a taste of Appalachian Gospel traditions.  Multi-instrumentalist and songwriter Rhonda Gouge, known for her original arrangements and blazing speed, handles the leads with Kathy Kuhne and Cheryl Craigie providing backup rhythm, vocals, and harmonies.
Soprano Rachel O'Reilly will conclude Bach's Lunch on  March 29.  Rachel is a 2010 graduate of the North Carolina School of the Arts in vocal performance and has performed solo and ensemble works in North Carolina, Santa Fe and San Francisco.  Rachel will perform works of Bach, Mozart, Clara Schumann, and Brahms.
Trinity Episcopal Church is located at 15 Hemlock Avenue in the English Woods neighborhood of Spruce Pine.  For more information about Bach's Lunch or Trinity Church, please call 520-1151 or email TECSP15@ATT.Net. 

For: Samantha Bingham
 and her fiance' Joey Rannazzisi
  Sunday, March 12th
 Family Life Center, 2:00 - 3:30
 They are registered at Bed, Bath, & Beyond

Prayer Ministry
Your prayers are greatly appreciated
You also must help us by prayer, so that many will give thanks on our behalf for the blessing granted us through the prayers of many. 
- 2 Corinthians 1:11
  • SHUT-IN'S: John & Sharon Cooke; Carol Clack, Mary Gilmour, Pete Hensley and Jerry Helsher
  • Bailey Willis, health issues (11 year old niece of Charlie and Stephanie Willis)
  • Bob Gouge, Carlyn Pelton's father, colin surgery
  • Sandra Spell, health issues
  • Jim Buckner, health issues
  • Barry Kelly, Heart surgery - good report - in rehab in Mars Hill
  • Jenn Chenowith, brain tumor (friend of Diana Noble)
  • Doug Zillweger's brother, leukemia (Doug is bone marrow donor)
  • Bill Riddle, health issues
  • Becky Gillespie, Chemo treatments
  • Marie Sharpe, Wes' Mom, health issues
  • Stephen Carver, health issues
  • Susan Rosmus' son-in-law, Christopher Soltys, cancer
  • LB and December Harris, health issues
  • Continued prayer for Jennifer McCourry's family
  • Bobby Jack & Shirley McAlister, health issues
  • Renee Wessel, continued prayer for healing
  • Trudy White, Bevo's Mom who is in hospice
  • Ben and Kelly Johnson (Young Life Staff)
  • Tom Alexander, on-going treatments in Chapel Hill
  • Margaret Hughes, health issues 
  • Kristen Brooks, terminal cancer
  • Rhonda McCall, missionary to Ukraine
  • The Kohman Family, CRU missionaries
  • Zach Howell, CRU Missionary to Charlotte Metro Team
  • Pastor Wes and your church staff
  • Sam Howell, US Army
  • J. P. Tabor, Airforce 
  • Our students in college and grad school
  • For children in foster care and foster parents
  • Pray for those who don't know Jesus.
  • Pray for those looking for a job/employment.
  • Pray for caregivers: Those caring for the elderly, parents, children, etc.
Prayer on the Square
March 19, 2017 - Sunday from 4-5 pm across from the Nu Wray Inn. --If the weather is bad, the prayer time will be held in the Family Life Center at Higgins in the classroom next to the kitchen.
March Birthdays
3/1    Dan Crabb                       3/22  
Debbie Phillips
3/2    Jon Perry                      3/23  Mat Sigmon
3/3    Kathy Williams             3/24  Alice Drummond
3/6    Emily Sigmon               3/25  Joe Scott
3/13  Wes Sharpe                 3/25  Lynn Walker
3/15  Daniel Boone                3/25  Garland Wampler
3/17  Becky Gillespie             3/27  Bowen Tyner
3/17  Joshua Tabor                3/27  Renee Weeks
3/18  Elaine Crabb                 3/29  Caleb Tabor
3/20  Bill Cullom                     3/30  Donna Banks
3/20  Nicole Honeycutt           3/30  Hillary Tabor
3/21  Jeff Reynolds                3/31  Timothy Tabor
3/21  Charles Williams           3/31  Charlie Willis
3/22  Bunnie McIntosh

March Anniversaries
3/15  Bob & Shirley Anne McAllister (60 years of marriage)
3/23  Dan & Elaine Crabb
3/30  Pat & Janet Hepburn  (64 years of marriage)
Stephen Minister
People often ask, "What exactly is a Stephen Minister?" One way to put it is that Stephen Ministers are the "After" People.
Stephen Ministers are there:
. . . after the phone call you hoped you'd never
. . . after the funeral, when everyone has left and
      the emotions you've held at bay come 
      crashing  in on you.
. . . after the relationship falls apart and the bottom falls out of your life.
. . . after the doctor says, "I'm sorry, but there's nothing more we can do."
. . . after the nursing home director shakes your hand and says,  
      "Welcome to your new home."
. . . after the last child honks the horn, waves, and drives away-and the
       house suddenly seems empty.
. . . after the gavel comes down, the handcuffs go on, and your loved one
       is led away.
. . . after the baby arrives, demanding more of you than you ever dreamed
. . . after you find a pink slip with your final paycheck.
. . . after your family and friends have heard your story one too many
       times, but you still need to talk it out.
Stephen Ministers are the "After" People. They are ready to come alongside you-or your friends, neighbors, coworkers, or relatives and provide comfort and support for as long after as needed. 
Would you like to be a part of this ministry?  Come to one of the information sessions to be held on March 5th between the two services, or March 6th at 6:30pm (watch the bulletin for location).  If you can't make either of these, please call Julie Spitzer (919)302-0897 or John Rice (828)371-7281. We will be starting a class to train new Stephen Ministers soon!  
Zach & Cori Howell's Newsletters