Dec. 1 — Hanging of the Greens, 1st Sunday of Advent
Dec. 8 — 2nd Sunday of Advent
Dec. 15 — Christmas Pageant, 3rd Sunday of Advent
(10:30 a.m. service ONLY, 9:30 a.m. Sunday School)
Christmas Dinner (12 noon—WH)
Dec. 22 — 4th Sunday of Advent
(Special Brass Music at 9:30 a.m.)
Dec. 24 — Christmas Eve Candlelight Service
(6 p.m. Wassail Bowl; 6:30 p.m. Worship)
January 12, 2014 — 125th Anniversary Celebration
Regular Worship Times, followed by Meal (12:30 p.m—WH)
and Special Program (1:30 p.m.—WH)
Worship (Traditional) 9:30 a.m.
Coffee Fellowship 10:30 a.m.
Adult Sunday School 10:50 a.m.
Worship (Contemporary) 11:30 a.m.
It’s not too late to complete the church Time & Talent Ministry Survey, available here for those who need a copy. Completed surveys may be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org or mailed to the church at 100 N. Pleasant St., Independence, MO, 64050. Consider joining us in dedicating ourselves to service and mutual support in Jesus Christ.
Call now to register for our Wednesday evening youth program — GenOn (formerly LOGOS). Grades 1st-12th with college students and parents welcome; nursery provided. (816-252-6662 or email our Youth Director).
NEW: Ladies Evening Bible Study for women on the book of Esther.
Join us at 9:30 or 11:30 a.m. Sundays for worship!
Handbell and Chancel choirs add their “voices” to the worship service.
If you’re reading this column right now, ask yourself, “Why?” Is there any spiritual purpose to your eyes landing on these very words at this very moment in time? Maybe; maybe not. Some people believe in predestination – that God has predetermined ALL things. And that’s fine. Others believe that predestination means that God has chosen those who will go to heaven and those who are destined for damnation. That’s the Calvinist understanding of predestination, in its strictest form. But it’s not the Presbyterian understanding or belief.
Presbyterians as a denomination do not believe that people are predestined to go to heaven or hell. Some may believe this, just as some may believe that all the events of our lives are predestined by God. To know for sure, we’d have to ask Him. But what Presbyterians actually believe as a denomination regarding predestination is that “God chose to redeem us, long before we could even understand what that might mean.”1
“Because God chose us before the foundation of the world, that means we are predestined to life (all people, everywhere). That does not take away our freedom or ability to choose; we make many choices every day.” And we have to live – and die – with the consequences, even when the consequence is a hell of our own making. But that’s not what God chose for us. Rather, “God has given us a new and bigger freedom: the freedom to fulfill our destiny” as those whom God has chosen for eternal life.
Yours in Christ,
1[Quoted material taken from “What Presbyterians DON’T Believe,” Presbyterian Today: Welcome to the Presbyterian Church!, a special issue. Go to www.pcusa.org/today and select “What do Presbyterians Believe?” from the list provided.]