This Week's Newsletter
February 17, 2021
Dear Fellow Servants of Jesus Christ,

Today is Ash Wednesday – the beginning of Lent! Our special service begins at 6:30 pm in the Sanctuary. Because of the pandemic, we will not have the imposition of ashes. However, we will have our own Stacy Morgan creating an ash drawing representing the beauty that comes out of the ashes. Kids Ministry has put together Lent Packs that will include a prayer journal and chalk art for the children to follow along with Stacey. We will also be handing out communion elements when you leave so that you can celebrate the Lord’s Supper at home. Please remember that our nursery will be available for children ages 3 and under.

Ash Wednesday is when we seek to see our lives and the world as God sees them. Lent is a time of humility and repentance as we see ourselves as sinners living in a broken world. People in the Bible would express repentance by wearing ashes. For example, when Job encounters God, he responds, “Therefore I despise myself and repent in dust and ashes." (Job 42:6) As we enter into Lent, let’s come before the Lord in humility and obedience: Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you. (1 Peter 5:6-7)

In Christ’s love,
Pastor Jim
Prayer Focus for February:
Relationships with family and friends.
New Baby: Jason and Sarah Flores welcomed their third daughter on Valentine’s Day, London Williams Flores.

Giving Envelopes are now available in the Narthex on Sundays and in the church office during the week. Please email Alisha Hudson at ahudson@saxegotha.org, and she will hold them for you in the Church Office.

Encounters with God Books Available: We have the current booklets available. Please email Pansy Floyd to let her know that you would like to receive one via the mail: pfloyd@saxegotha.org.
Each year, Christians worldwide attend services on Ash Wednesday and receive the imposition of ashes. The marking of ashes in the shape of a cross on the foreheads of believers begins the forty-day journey of Lent leading to Easter. During this year's service, we will not have the imposition of ashes in order to keep everyone safe. However, we will have Stacy Morgan creating an ash drawing representing the beauty that comes out of the ashes. Kids Ministry has put together Lent Packs that will include a prayer journal and chalk art to follow along with Stacey. Nursery will be available for children 3 and under.  
Lenten Calendar:
We are excited to offer a Lenten Calendar to help you focus on God in preparation for Easter. Please follow along daily. We have included a link below if you would like to print out the calendar and place it somewhere that you see throughout the day. If you feel led to serve your community through donations to Mission Lexington, we have included their requests in the graphic below.

This calendar will also be available for pick up after the Ash Wednesday Service this evening.
Mission Lexington Top 40 Donation Needs:
Saxe Gotha partners with Mission Lexington throughout the year to help serve those in need in our community. During Lent, we will have a special donation drive to fill the shelves at Mission Lexington. We would love for every family at Saxe Gotha to participate if able.

Mission Lexington bins will be set-up around the Saxe Gotha campus until Easter. In addition, you can leave donations outside the Church Office week days from 9:00 am - 5:00 pm.
Prayerwalking Guide
During Lent this year, we invite you to begin Prayerwalking to refocus ourselves on God, rather than the distractions of the world. Prayerwalking involves taking our prayers out into our community where we desire to see God’s presence manifested and our prayers answered. We welcome you and your family to join us in praying for our community as we prepare for Easter. Download the brochure below to get your own copy of the Prayerwalking guide.
Prayer Wall - New Interactive Prayer Page

Pray for the Saxe Gotha Community
Throughout the Lenten Season, we will come together to pray for those in our community and around the world. Taking the time to refocus our vision from our own worries and concerns to God’s infinite grace and loving providence. To help us be aware of the prayer needs of our community we have launched the Saxe Gotha Prayer Wall on our website at saxegotha.org/prayer. Here you can post your prayer requests, see what prayer requests others in our community have posted, and show that you have prayed for them. This platform helps us to actively see the power of prayer in our everyday lives and in the lives of those around me.
The church is open for worship services,
Sunday School and small groups now. 
Worship With Us In Person or Online
We livestream our 8:30 am Traditional Service and our 11:00 am AWE Contemporary Service. If you prefer to view the Traditional Service at 11:00, you can re-play the 8:30 service at that time.

To view the Saxe Gotha Services and other resources, please go to: youtube.com/user/SaxeGothaPres.

We would love to chat with you online during the services. Please turn on the YouTube chat function if you would like to comment.
Sunday School Classes - In Person and Online
Most classes have both options available.
Sunday School In-Person Plans:
Please know that the chairs in your classroom will be spread 6 feet apart and everyone will be required to wear a mask indoors. Outdoors social distancing is required, but masks are optional.  Please also remember that the coffee machines and the water fountains will not be available. Finally, because we are still livestreaming both the 8:30 am and 11:00 am services, Lonnie and his AV team are unavailable to help any Sunday school classes with technical issues. Again, I appreciate your patience and flexibility with this new configuration of our Sunday school classes. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact me directly at hhham@saxegotha.org.
On February 24 at 6:30 - 7:30 pm, we will resume our Wednesday classes for adults. 
We will offer four classes:

·  Potluck Parenting - Raising children is a tough challenge in today’s world. This 6-week discussion class offers practical tools and solid biblical advice based on the questions and topics the parents in the class have. Join Jim Glatz in room 151 MB. (jglatz@saxegotha.org)
·  The Reason for God: Conversations on Faith and Life - This 6-week class will dig into the objections of the Christian faith to learn about both sides of the issues. Chuck Stoudemire will lead this class and teach some basics of apologetics. They will meet in room 154 MB. (cestoudemire@windstream.net) Study guide $9.00.
·  The Ten Commandments: Are They Still Relevant? - Join this casual conversation facilitated by Jenni Gannon. They will meet in 155 MB. Each week a separate topic will be covered. Feel free to jump in at any point and if you miss a class, you can come back and pick up with the commandment being studied that week. (jennifer.gannon@dominionenergy.com)
·  Holy Conversations: Talking About God in Everyday Life - This interactive class will help us learn to engage in comfortable conversation about the good news of Jesus with those around us. Taught by Helen Harrison Ham and Pete Eckert and will meet in the Library/152 MB. (hhham@saxegotha.org) Book $14.00.

For everyone’s safety, we will continue to wear masks inside the buildings and maintain the safe social distance of six feet. If you have any questions or would like more information about how to grow deeper in your faith in 2021 or the above classes, please contact hhham@saxegotha.org or 803-359-7770.
GriefShare

Held on Sundays (2:00-4:00 pm) in the Church Library for 13 weeks. Last meeting is Sunday, March 28.

It can be very hard to deal with the loss of a loved one. Daily life, responsibilities, and the many feelings that are associated with a death can be difficult to manage. You are not alone. Come and join us as we look at ways to manage the many aspects of life that have changed. Being with others that have lived through the passing of a loved one, along with being around others that understand how you feel, can be very beneficial. We are here for you.

You are welcome to begin attending the GriefShare group at any session. Each is “self-contained,” so you do not have to attend in sequence. You will find encouragement and help whenever you begin.

Contact Renee Starnes at rstarnes@saxegotha.org or Marti Evans MKE29072@gmail.com for details.
Positions Open: Student Ministry Assistant and
Children's Ministry Coordinator
We are looking to fill two positions on staff! The primary role of the Student Ministry Assistant is to assist the Director of Student Ministry in the implementation of ministry to students. The Children's Ministry Coordinator works with the Director of Children's Ministries in the implementation of ministry to children. Please download the complete job descriptions below. Contact pcherry@saxegotha.org with questions. We look forward to hearing from you!
Do you or someone you know need to talk to someone?

Have you heard about Stephen Ministers?


If you would like to talk to someone, contact Carol Perrin at
803-917-6690 or by email tictic8000@yahoo.com.

Stephen Ministers are lay congregation members trained to provide one-on-one care to those experiencing a difficult time in life, such as grief, divorce, job loss, relocation or chronic or terminal illness.

Stephen Ministers come from all walks of life, but they all share a passion for bringing Christ's love and care to people during a time of need.

Since 1975, more than 600,000 people from more than 13,000 congregations and other organizations have been trained as Stephen Ministers.
First Impressions Team - Call for Volunteers!
The First Impressions Team is in need of Ushers and CREW members. Please call or email Carl Hammond at 803-767-0864 or hammondcb@yahoo.com if you are interested. All volunteers assist once every 6 weeks.
Kids Ministry to resume in person Wednesday Night Programming on Wednesday, February 24. Sunday Afternoon Programming will resume on Sunday, February 21.  Masks will be required and social distancing will be enforced at all times and no food will be served on either day.
Kids Sunday School is now offered in person in the gym at 9:45 am or online.
Sunday School Online
Dawn Merck is offering a 9:45 am Sunday morning Bible study time on Zoom. We are coordinating SS efforts, so she will also be using God's Story Cards and following along with Pastor Jim's sermon series.

Meeting ID: 845 8013 1133
Passcode: 0eh2sd
Can't wait to see you! If you have technical difficulties or questions, please text Melinda at 803.397.7034. 
Wednesday Nights Online
Join us on Zoom on Wednesday Nights at 6:00 pm.

Our Mystery Family will tell us about one of the miracles of Jesus and then lead us through a building or cooking challenge.

You can join the Zoom meeting with the following information:
Meeting ID: 730 6284 6921
Passcode: WWMF21

If you have technical difficulties or questions, please text Melinda at 803.397.7034.
Seekers - NEW GROUP for KIDS!
This Sunday, February 21, all kindergarten -3rd graders are invited to join us for a FUN-FILLED KICK OFF PARTY for Seekers. This bible study and fellowship time with be from 4:00-5:30 pm. Drop off and pick up kids under the covered awning to keep everyone socially distanced. The kids will be in MB Room 224/225. Bring a mask and friend!! Contact Sara McCarter at smccarter@saxegotha.org.

We will have a ton of fun while we SEEK God in His word together and store up His word in our hearts! We will learn all about who God is, and how God has a plan of redemption for those who seek and know him! 
Kid's Choir Kick Off:
This Sunday, February 21 from 3:30-4:00 pm. Grade schoolers will meet in the parking lot beside the Light House; preschoolers meet on the playground (both groups will meet in the the choir room in case of rainy weather). We will be working on a song about Jonah to be recorded for a virtual choir. Since we are meeting before Seekers and Club 45, we will take your kids to their 4:00 pm location.
Club 45

Will resume on Sunday, February 21 from 4:00 - 5:30 pm in the Light House.

We are so glad to be back! This semester we will be studying the Armor of God. Bring a mask and friend! 
Students Ministry will not have Wednesday Night Programming on Ash Wednesday, February 17, but will resume again on Wednesday, February 24. 

Sunday Afternoon Programming will meet on Sunday, February 21.  Masks will be required and social distancing will be enforced at all times and no food will be served on either day.
Downpour - Wednesday Nights
Each week on Wednesdays, Downpour starts at 6:30 pm on the Saxe Gotha YouTube channel. Downpour will not met on Ash Wednesday, February 17, but will be back in person on Wednesday, February 24. The livestream will continue weekly even after in person Wednesday nights resume.

Sunday School will be available in person and online.
Students Sunday School Classes In Person
Middle School: 146/145
High School: 144/143
 
If you arrive before 9:55 am, you'll find us all hanging out in the Atrium for some fellowship before Justin Hall sends you back to your classroom.

Sunday School Online
Students Sunday School Online: Click here to join a Zoom Sunday School Meeting for Students. Middle and High School students will meet together and then go into Zoom breakout rooms. Contact: Justin Hall at jhall@saxegotha.org.

If you would like to join Zoom manually:
Meeting ID: 858 0312 2810
Passcode: M3HwJx

Wednesday Morning Bible Study for Middle School
Meeting Wednesday Mornings from 7:15 - 8:00 am in the Light House Atrium. Breakfast will not be served, but you can purchase a Chick-Fil-A biscuit to go. Rides are available to school. Contact: Justin Hall at jhall@saxegotha.org.
Middle School Group - The Oasis

Will resume on Sunday, February 21 from 4:00 - 5:30 pm in the Light House.
High School Group - Refuge

Will resume on Sunday, February 21 from 4:00 - 5:30 pm in the Fellowship Hall.
Girl's Small Groups:
Currently Meeting
6th-8th Girls Bible Study
This group will be going through the book of 1 John. We will study what it means to love one another and the love of God. As we dig into the Word together, we will also have some time to deepen our friendships and fellowship with one another. We meet on Tuesdays from 6:00-7:30 pm at Stephanie McGee’s home. This group is led by Kalie Wehunt, Livvy McGee and Stephanie McGee. For more information, contact Kalie Wehunt


9th-11th Girls Bible Study
Meets on Tuesdays from 6:30-7:30 pm at Jennifer Gissendaner's house.: 248 Clubside Drive. For more information, contact Justin

12th Grade Girls Small Group
This group is going through a semester of apologetics. We will learn how to defend our faith and how to handle the Word of Truth to do so. Meets on Mondays 6:00-7:00 pm. Meeting at Liz Carpenter's house: 84 Rocky Cove Road. For more information, contact Justin.
Boy's Small Groups:
Currently Meeting

Middle School Boys Bible Study
Join in for a Bible Study that's just for the guys. This group meets every other Tuesday from 6:00-7:00 pm in the Light House Cafe. For more information, contact Justin.  


High School Boys Small Group
We know that iron sharpens iron, so why not pump some iron, too? We're going to get together twice a week to study the word, work out, and get better. Barry and Justin are going to be leading this small group as we dig into the word and then hit the gym. We'll meet twice a week in the church gym. Monday afternoons at 5:00-6:00 pm and Thursday mornings at 6:00-7:00 am. You can join in for one or both meetings each week, but make sure you have rides worked out beforehand because we won't be doing school runs since we'll be done around 7:00 am on Thursdays. Wear clothes you can work out in and close-toed shoes. If you have any questions, you can contact Justin.
In Town Modgnik for Middle and High School this March!

The Modgnik Team has met and come up with a great way to get our students to connect, worship and grow in a safe and creative way this year. We fully believe in the mission and importance of Modgnik, so we want to do everything in our power to make Modgnik happen, even if it looks different.

In town Modgnik will meet on Friday evening, March 12, and all day on Saturday, March 13, at First Baptist of Lexington. The cost is $30 per person, and that includes a tee shirt, snacks throughout the event, lunch and dinner on Saturday, teaching, worship and all of the fun you'd expect from Modgnik. We are building the registration right now, and we will be sending a link out this week to register. Check your calendars now, because registration is going to be quick, but believe me when I say that it's worth it for this awesome event!
Lexington School District One Backpack Program

Saxe Gotha will be partnering with Lexington School District One to support the Backpack Program. As a partner, we will help fill backpacks and send them to schools for weekly distribution to children who have great need.

Food items should be left in the Narthex, Atrium (when the church re-opens) or outside of the main office in the box labeled "backpack ministry." Monetary donations can be made to SGPC with “backpack ministry” in the memo line.
In February, Club 45 packed 160 bags of food for the backpack ministry! They would like to extend a big “thank you” for the continued support for this ministry! 
Current Sermon Series: Characters
Characters gives us a glimpse into the lives of people of faith. During the next year, we will be challenged as we dig deeper into the context and setting of each person’s life – gaining new insights into the world in which they lived and connecting their world with ours. Along the way, truths that impact our lives today will be discovered as we see the challenges, struggles and opportunities faced by people seeking to follow God. In many of these stories, we will find ourselves and our need for a Savior. We pray that through these studies, we will be transformed and better equipped to fulfill God’s purposes in our world today.
Moms in Ministry
Saxe Gotha has a new group just for Moms...we will connect you with other moms (with kids under the age of 21) who are going through the same challenges you face. This is a place to share your concerns, be encouraged by God's Word, and enjoy fellowship with moms.

Please like and follow this group on Facebook at SG Moms in Ministry or on Instagram.
Sermons Available Online: To listen to past sermons, please go to saxegotha.org/media. To watch past sermons, please go to our Saxe Gotha YouTube Channel and make sure to subscribe.
Monday Morning Women's Bible Studies
Debbie Knight’s Monday morning group will resume later this year. Contact Debbie Knight: lexdeb73@gmail.com

The Young Mother's Bible Study will resume later this year. Contact Meredith Cully: mcully@saxegotha.org.
The Monday Morning Men’s Bible study is online!
Meets virtually on Mondays at 8:30 am for a brief lesson and to pray for each other and for other people. Contact Scott Welborn at bleedbabyblu@gmail.com for meeting information. This Bible study is open to men of all ages.
Did you know that Saxe Gotha has its own customized library on Right Now Media?
Here is the specific link to it if you already have your account set up:
https://www.rightnowmedia.org/CustomLibrary/8737. Right Now is like the Netflix of Christian media and Bible studies. And if you're already tired of watching TV and scrolling the internet, then feed your mind and heart with good stuff! We have several different channels within Saxe Gotha's custom library: Adults, Youth, Children, Worship and the Arts, Missions and Outreach, Marriage, and Parenting. 

If you need help setting up your Right Now account, you can contact one of the following:
Helen Harrison Ham: hhham@saxegotha.org
Patrick Cherry: pcherry@saxegotha.org
Justin Hall: jhall@saxegotha.org
Melinda Boyle: mboyle@saxegotha.org
Hal McIntosh: hmcintosh@saxegotha.org

The studies and videos inside Saxe Gotha's library on Right Now are just suggestions from our staff. Please feel free to explore and enjoy the many wonderful videos on Right Now while you are at home!
Giving Update:
5503 Sunset Boulevard
Lexington, SC 29072
803.359.7770

Office Hours
M – Th  8:30 – 5:00 pm

Sunday Worship
Traditional       8:30 am
Contemporary 11:00 am

Livestream Services youtube.com/user/SaxeGothaPres