Volume 2, Issue 12 | December 2019
Advent, which marks the beginning of the church year, is “the first gleam of Christmas,” writes W.E. Sangster. “It heralds the entrance of the Divine into human history; it is heaven descending to earth; it is a great event casting its brilliance before it.” Sangster adds: “It is as though a trumpeter had taken his stand upon the turrets of time and announced the coming of the King. ‘Get ready,’ he seems to say. ‘Get ready. He is coming!’”
Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

The month of December has always been a month I have looked forward to.  I look back over the year and remember all that had taken place:  the churches I was able to preach for, the visits and prayer time fellowships with pastors, the many meetings I was a part of, as well as the VBSs I was able to visit.  Good memories come to mind as the many opportunities to minister to people took place.  I thank the Lord over and over again for His allowing me to be a part of His Kingdom Work.  I hope you will also look over your year and thank the Lord for His many blessings.

December also brings about the excitement of Christmas.  Yes, we do like to put up the Christmas tree with its lights and bulbs and ribbons.  For many putting white or colored lights around the house will be something they do, and of course the shopping for gifts that will be placed under the tree.  There will also be many Christmas gatherings, delicious meals, Christmas programs and caroling.  It is a festive time of the year.

But it can also be a sad and difficult time of year for many. Some have lost loved ones, some may have lost their job, some may have been diagnosed with a serious illness, some may be going through a broken marriage.  My heart aches when I hear of these things happening.  I do a lot of praying for those having to go through those difficult times.

But most importantly December is the time we recognize the birth of the greatest gift man has ever been given:  the birth of Jesus, our Savior, our Lord and our only Hope.  It is a time of celebration, rejoicing and being glad.  As the angels said to the shepherds:  “… Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord.” (Luke 2:10-11). And in Isaiah we read that “…He will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” (Isaiah 9:6).  This incredible gift is for everyone!  It may not come wrapped in colorful paper, but it will be a life changing gift that no one can steal, will not break, fits everyone and will last forever.

Whatever you have been through this year, don’t forget to enjoy the celebration of peace and joy and hope that Jesus brought to us.  He really loves you and cares very much for you.  As we like to receive gifts, let’s not forget to receive the gift of Jesus.  But don’t just receive Him, share Him with others.  There may be others who need the joy and peace and hope that you have.  I wish all of you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Your Fellow Servant,
Bro. Loren
Upcoming Events
December 2019

1st - FRBA Compa ñ erismo Quarterly Meeting at Iglesia Bautista Primera Mexicana (Cotulla, TX)
3rd-7th - OCL Christmas Ministry
(no regular meeting this month)
4th - South Zone Pastor’s Prayer Meeting
7th - 11:00am - FRBA Church Administrators' Fellowship Christmas Potluck (details below)
10th - FRBA Executive Board Pastor/Spouse & Staff Christmas Fellowship - starting at 6:30pm
12th - East Zone Pastor's Prayer Meeting
19th - North Zone Pastor's Prayer Meeting
24th-31st - Christmas Holidays
31st - New Year's Eve
January 2020

1st - New Year's Day (FRBA OFFICE CLOSED)
South Zone Pastor's will NOT meet this month
6th-7th - FRBA Pastors & Spouses Prayer Retreat
( at Alto Frio)
7th - OCL Meeting - 6:30pm
9th - East Zone Pastor's Prayer Meeting
14th - FRBA Executive Board Meeting
9:30am – Fellowship
10:00am – Business Meeting
17th-19th - Project Serve Youth Retreat (Alto Frio)
21st - FRBA Tax Seminar
10:00am to 3:00pm (lunch included - details below)
23rd - North Zone Pastor's Prayer Meeting
24th - 25th - A Godly Woman: Abiding in Him event
at Cowboy Fellowship (details below)

Feb. 11th - FRBA CPR/1st Aid/AED Training
May 1st-4th - FRBA Annual Ladies Retreat at H. E. Butt Foundation Camp

Living Christmas Village 2019
Strawberry Festival Grounds Hwy 16, Poteet, Texas 78065

Experience The Journey of Christ.
The 40-minute tour departs every 10 to 15 minutes. 
Come out and enjoy live music, free refreshments,
and free petting zoo for the children.
Make the Christmas Village part of your annual Christmas celebration!
Bring your family and friends and come experience Bethlehem during the time of Jesus. As Isaiah escorts you through the village, you will go from scene to scene as the times of Christ are presented. From the prophecy of His birth to His resurrection, come experience The Greatest Story Ever Told!!!

The Christmas Village is located on Hwy 16 in Poteet, TX 78065 at the Lions Club Building
on the Strawberry Festival Grounds.  For more information please call 830-569-2582.
Click HERE for pictures and more info.
FBC Devine invites you to join them for the following Christmas music events.

December 8th - 6:00pm
Children's Choir Christmas Musical
"Fact or Fiction: The Christmas Edition"

December 15th - 6:00pm
Sanctuary Choir Christmas Musical
"Joy Has Dawned"
followed by a potluck supper

December 22nd - 6:00pm
Candles & Carols Service
First Baptist Churches in Pleasanton, Charlotte
and Floresville are combining their voices into a 75-voice choir to sing the Christmas musical,
His Name is Jesus
on Sunday, Dec. 15th at 6:00pm
at First Baptist Church,
400 N Reed St. in Pleasanton. 
The choir is accompanied on piano by
Keith Shearrer, keyboard Joy Caraway,
trumpet Patti Rutan, flutes Lillian Post and Stephanie Thompson, and
soprano sax Robert Rutherford.
John Coleman is director.
All are cordially invited to this musical
Christmas celebration.
All our ministers (and their wives) are invited to join us for
our annual prayer retreat at Alto Frio.
Darin Griffiths and his lovely wife Caren will lead the group this year.
Registration cost for attendees will be $40.00 per person or $75.00 per couple .
(Please make checks payable to "Frio River Baptist Association",
and send them to Laurie Beth at the FRBA office.)
We’ll meet for lunch at Bill & Rosa's KK Steakhouse in D'Hanis at 12:00pm on
Monday, January 6th. From there the group will travel to Alto Frio.
The retreat will last through 11:30am on Tuesday, January 7th.
Registration fees are due in the FRBA office by Thursday, January 2nd.
Get your tickets TODAY by clicking HERE !
Our 4th Annual Ladies' Retreat at HEB Foundation Camp
will be here before we know it.
Registration starts January 1st!
Pass the word to the ladies in your church
and get your group signed up early.
Around the Association
Frio River Baptist Association & Somerset Baptist Church welcome Andrew Medina , as he begins his ministry as
youth pastor in Somerset.
Congratulations to the youth and children of Black Creek Baptist Church for winning a 1st place ribbon for their float in the recent Cactus Festival in Devine on November 2nd!

November 10th was another great day at Black Creek Baptist Church as they spent the day packing shoe boxes for Operation Christmas Child . All their efforts led to 153 boxes being packed and sent out with love.
FBC Carrizo Springs rededicated their original church building (now their chapel) on November 17th. 100 people attended, including family of the original charter members!

When this 128 year-old church building was built, it was the Baptist church furthest west in Texas. It will now be used for special services like a Christmas Candlelight service and for weddings and VBS. To God be the glory!
January 1st thru November 30th
Income: $146,882.93
Expenses: $128,394.76
Income: $141,675.92
Expenses: $133,462.73
PLEASE NOTE : FRBA will apply financial gifts postmarked by December 31, 2019 and received by January 6, 2020
to the 2019 calendar year.
After January 6, 2020 all gifts will be applied to the 2020 year.
Love in Action
Operation Christian Love
Contact Beth Ann at 210-854-9360 for more information.
This NEW Bible study and many more are available
through our resource library!

Unshakable Hope: Building Our Lives on the Promises of God
by Max Lucado
(12-session DVD study)

Click here to download one of our checkout forms. Then just complete it and
bring it by the office to borrow a Bible study to meet your needs.

We’re also accepting donations of used DVD Bible study kits.
If you or your church have some that you are no longer using, we’d love
to have them here to share with other churches in our Association.
Frio River Baptist Association | Phone: 830-334-2061 | Fax: 830-334-3025 | Email | Website