The News of Zion
Love God
Love People
~Luke 10:27
December 22, 2020
Musings: A Hope for Peace. . .

If my memory serves me correctly—and some days that may be debatable— John Wesley made the suggestion that ministers should read several newspapers a day. Given there was no internet or social media in the eighteenth century, I imagine he made the suggestion so that ministers had some idea of the world they were offering Jesus to. I personally don’t subscribe to any physical newspapers, but I try to do a little reading from a variety of sources online and through emails I get. I don’t always spend much time on them but occasionally something will catch my eye and I click over to have a look.
    Case in point, I read an interesting article about the latest Covid relief bill making its way through congress. For the past six months, the bill has been pretty much dead because of partisan politics and pork barrel wrangling. This week however, a group of senators from both sides of the aisle put all (okay, most) of that aside in the hopes of finding enough common ground to help the people they serve. Apparently, there are enough people in congress of either party who are simply tired of all the extremism in our political system. Without delving into partisan politics for either side, I was glad to see some moderate, practical thinking. Honestly, as we prepare to turn the corner for another year, I hope to see more of that in the future. Which is what this season is about: hope.
Hope in a better way of living
Hope in a better future
Hope in seeing the world through new eyes
unstained by the brokenness of the past
    This hope is the hope Jesus brought to a people who were broken by many years of war and subjugation. This hope is the hope that drove a group of men and women to give up their lives and wander the countryside as witnesses to a ministry that changed the world. This hope created a new way of seeing the world, a way of life and being which would alter the reality of everyone who was ever born after. This hope is the same hope we carry today as disciples of Jesus and followers of the Way.
    As we prepare to look toward the new year, I pray we find this hope not only in the nativity story but in the rest of Jesus’ story. And not only in the story of Jesus but the story of those who followed him in life and the lives following after. I pray this thread of hope, stretching back over the centuries, across continents, through peoples and lives becomes a living hope for each of us. May this same hope which changed the world change each of our lives and the lives of those around us.

Pastor Michael
Christmas Eve Worship and
December 27 11:00AM Worship
will be ONLINE!
Our Christmas Eve Service will be streamed on FB on Thursday, December 24 at 5:30 pm. We will not have in-person worship for Christmas Eve. Please plan to join us virtually on FB or view the service anytime on our FB page following the broadcast or on our website, www.zionumc.com. In addition, Worship on Sunday, December 27 will also be streamed on FB at 11:00 am. We invite you to join us online if you are able! Our concern for gathering for in-person worship is due to the increasing numbers of COVID cases in our community that we are seeing in the last couple of weeks with families and friends gathering. We are choosing to be proactive and keep our members safe and invite you to worship with us at home and with immediate family.  We appreciate everyone’s understanding and support!!! We will resume in-person worship on Sunday, January 3 at 11:00 am in the sanctuary!!   We pray a very Merry Christmas to each and every one!
Poinsettias were placed in the sanctuary on Sunday, December 13 and Sunday, December 20 to the glory of God and in memory of Juanita and Teenie Sweatt and Wink and Lillian McAteer by the Billy Sweatt Family. This was left off of the previous announcement and I apologize to this precious family. - Missy
Luminaries: 
What a beautiful LIVE Nativity and Luminaries we had on Sunday!!! Thank you to our youth, youth leaders and their families who helped to make this special for all who came through and felt the blessing from the beautiful lights and nativity as we celebrated that CHRIST IS BORN!! The honorariums and memorials for the luminaries are listed below. Thank you to each one who supported our youth in this event!!!
In honor of loved ones as follows:
Chris Massey Family by Carolyn Massey
Barbara Hall by Carolyn Massey
Darlene Hallman by Carolyn Massey
Zion members by Carolyn Massey
Marion Curtis by Pat Threatt
Sonny Curtis by Pat Threatt
Michael Mills by Pat Threatt
Wanda Murphy by Pat Threatt
Marcene Plyler by Pat Threatt
Harris Plyler by Pat Threatt
Terry Robinson by Pat Threatt
Hazel Robinson by Pat Threatt
Missy Snipes by Pat Threatt
Dianne Martin by Pat Threatt
Brett and Adair Craig by Beth Craig
Jamison Craig by Nana
Mama and Daddy by Jamison Craig
Mary Knight by Matthew and Kaylee Snipes
 
In memory of loved ones as follows:
Keith Stacks by Max and Myra Funderburk
Paul and Sarah Funderburk by Max and Myra Funderburk
Colon and Ruth Williams by Max and Myra Funderburk
David Stacks by Carolyn Massey
Lillie Belle Stacks by Carolyn Massey
Roscoe Massey by Carolyn Massey
Blanch Massey by Carolyn Massey
Buddy Massey by Carolyn Massey
Rhonda Stacks by Carolyn Massey
David Stacks by Barbara Hall
Lillie Belle Stacks by Barbara Hall
Buddy Massey by Barbara Hall
Rhonda Stacks by Barbara Hall
Franklin Hallman by Barbara Hall
Grace and Russell Mills by Leslie and Michael Mills
Betty and E.W. King by Leslie and Michael Mills
Charline and Lou Pillsboro by Leslie and Michael Mills
Harry Moseley by Leslie and Michael Mills
Pat Hack by Leslie and Michael Mills
Pete Campana by Leslie and Michael Mills
Ken Jackson by Leslie and Michael Mills
Myrtle Craig by Mike and Diane Rape
Walter Craig by Mike and Diane Rape
Ricky Craig by Mike and Diane Rape
Ralph Craig by Mike and Diane Rape
Jamie Craig by Mike and Diane Rape
Robert Rape by Mike and Diane Rape
Ruby Rape by Mike and Diane Rape
Cliff Rape by Mike and Diane Rape
Curtis Cooper by Stephen and Tammy Cooper
Robin Cooper by Stephen and Tammy Cooper
Ken Vick by Stephen and Tammy Cooper
Tonya Catoe by Stephen and Tammy Cooper
Sara Vick by Stephen and Tammy Cooper
Billy McAbee by Mike and Barbara Vick
Mitchell Bundy by Mike and Barbara Vick
Lou Bundy by Mike and Barbara Vick
Toy Vick by Mike and Barbara Vick
Sara Vick by Mike and Barbara Vick
Ralph Craig by Beth Craig
Jamie Craig by Beth Craig
Grandpaw by Jamison Craig
Peggy Knight by The Craigs
Alma Leslie by Shirley Hunter and Joyce Weathersbee
Margaret Anderson by Shirley Hunter and Joyce Weathersbee
Sam Anderson by Shirley Hunter and Joyce Weathersbee
Judy Chandler by Shirley Hunter and Joyce Weathersbee
Caleb Love by Rock and Karen Love
Colby Adams by Rock and Karen Love
Maxine Moore by Rock and Karen Love
Caleb Love by Shane and Glenda Love
Maxine Moore by Shane and Glenda Love
Colby Adams by Shane and Glenda Love
Myrtle Craig by Shane and Glenda Adams
Gene Knight by Matthew and Kaylee Snipes
Readings/Prayers For Christmas Eve and Christmas Day

Christmas is the time in which believers joyfully celebrate Christ’s birth. This Christmas Eve and Day as we experience the joy of family, food, and finally opening those gifts; let's pause to meditate on the reason for the season. Together with our family and friends make time to read, pray, and ponder the miraculous gift of Jesus!
John 1:4-5: “In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.”
This Christmas Eve and Day we celebrate the life that is the light of all mankind! Our hearts swell with gratitude because light came down in the form of a precious baby to pierce the darkness that troubles this world. God was faithful to the promise he made to his people. He promised that we would not be left alone chained to a hopeless fate of sin and death but rather we would be saved by the sacrifice of a great rescuer!
Today would you pray that God’s joy would be evident in your heart and home? This year we all have faced so much difficulty. Joy can be hard to hold onto when we are in the midst of a storm but our hope in Jesus is a firm foundation. We can celebrate in every season, not because our lives have been made perfect, but because our eternal destination is secure.
This Christmas Eve and Day we conclude the Advent season that invited us to set aside the fear and uncertainty that has defined 2020. Let’s continue the practice of pausing to pray, read, and reflect as we conclude this year and step into a new one. One great lesson from 2020 has been that we are not in control.
We need God. We need his peace, presence, power, mercy, justice, and love in our lives to survive. The greatest truth is that our world needs Jesus! May we enter 2021 with stirred hearts and renewed faith!
We have lit a candle each Sunday of this advent season. Each week we have been prompted to ponder a different idea. Week one we reflected on the hope we have in Jesus, week two symbolized preparation, week three we focused on joy, and finally week four we meditated on the peace Jesus brings us. 
This Christmas Eve and Day we can light each candle and a fifth central candle that reminds us of the light that shines in the darkness! This light shines in the darkness but the darkness shall not overpower it (John 1:5).
Our love and appreciation to our Lay Leader, Steve Moseley, who stepped up VERY last minute on Sunday to lead us in worship and bring us the message when Pastor Michael was unable to be present! Thank you, Steve!!!
Morning Walking Club: Our weekday morning walking group has resumed meeting in the life center Monday through
Friday at 8:00 AM. Church members are welcome to come out and enjoy getting in some exercise out of the elements and in a secure location!
2021 Offering Envelopes are available in the church vestibule. As we are not meeting for Sunday school, the vestibule will be the best collection site for your yearly envelopes. As in years past, assigned numbers are not necessary. Thank you!!!
Pastor Michael continues to offer morning prayer and Bible study. Join us each morning at 7:00 AM for Prayer and meditation. Join us, also on Thursdays at 12:00 Noon for Bible Study. Pastor Michael is hosting these from our Facebook page. If you are unable to log in LIVE, these offerings remain available for viewing after on our website and FB page.
While the church office remains closed, you are encouraged to reach out if you have a need or know of a need. You may call Pastor Michael at 1-859-475-8800, call the church office, 803-285-3864 and leave a message, call Missy at 803-804-2434 or email lmjarrell@umcsc.org or zionumc@comporium.net; these emails are being monitored daily. The answering machine will also be checked daily. During these times, we ask everyone to pray together for each other, our church family, our community, our country, and our world.
Please remember these in prayer:
Nancy Ackerman
Angela Bailey
Francis Bell
Phillip Bell
Sue Catoe
Carol Cauthen
Angie Dobson
John Elder
Myra Funderburk
Mike Gay
Ovedia Griffin
Catherine Hammond
JoAnn Hinson
Rick Joyner
Rev. Frank Lybrand
Bill McCorkle
Kevin McCorkle
Marie Moree
Harris Plyler
Marcene Plyler
Ann Powers
Kathleen Robinson
John Rollins
Virginia Rollins
Bonnie Sears
Eva Small
Greg Smith
JoAnne Smith
Billy Sowell
Robbie Stepp
Matthew Sweatt
Pat Vick
Myrtle Walker
Donna Walters
Ellen Walters
Kim Yost
Our President and Troops
Those affected by the COVID virus
Even as we offer in-person worship, our services will still be made available online on our Facebook page. Log in to our Zion United Methodist Church Facebook page this Sunday for our service if you are unable to make it to church!! The service will also be available on our website at www.zionumc.com
January/February 2021 Upper Room Daily Devotionals are available for pick up at the church! We will place some of these in the church vestibule on the table and some in the plastic communication box outside of the life center doors where the buses are for those who do not attend worship or have access to the church for you to pick up. There are large and regular print copies available.
December 22: Michael Jarrell, Frances Parris, Mr. and Mrs. Jack Steele
December 23: Miriam Griffin
December 25: David Hayes
December 27: Chad Payne, Randy Walker
December 28: Casey Hall
December 29: Michelle Pardue, Kenneth Taylor, Mr. and Mrs. Tommy Middleton, Mr. and Mrs. Michael Mills
December 30: Jeff Moree

Special Gifts to Zion Church
In Honor of:
Happy Birthday Aunt Frances! by Wanda Murphy
Avery Jarrell -Prayers! by Max and Myra Funderburk
In Memory of:
Peggy Knight by Danny and Nancy Ackerman
 
Special Gifts to Building Fund
In Memory of:
Peggy Knight on Christmas by Tommy Knight 
BIRTHDAY CLUB
In memory of Pat McAteer on her birthday
by Libby, JoJo, and Alicia
The Record Speaks....
December 20, 2020

Present for Worship: 55
Needed each week for the General Fund $4,360
Received for General Fund $3661
Received for Building Fund $32.80
Received for Luminaries for Youth $84

There are many options available to give to the continuing ministry and outreach of Zion UMC. You may drop your offering in the offering plate as you arrive or leave worship service on Sundays, give through Paypal on the website www.zionumc.com, text your giving to 803-525-1834 and follow the secure link, or if you are not comfortable attending worship at this time and do not wish to give online, you may drop your offering in the mail to Zion UMC at 1665 Zion Road, Lancaster, SC 29720 or drop off in the mail drop box that is located beside the double doors where the buses are. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact Missy at 803-804-2434 or leave a message at the church office, 803-285-3864 and your call will be returned. Thank you for your continued support of the Mission that is Zion!!

"...because of this the Lord your God will bless you in all your work and in everything you put your hand to."
Deuteronomy 15:10,,
803-285-3864 - www.zionumc.com