Merry Christmas! It’s a wonderful season for the church as we celebrate the most important moment in human history. It’s a time to be with family and friends to celebrate the virgin birth of our Lord Jesus Christ. This is moment where a miracle became a reality and we learned that nothing is impossible with God. It’s a story of the eternal promises of life, Jesus becoming a man with the ultimate sacrifice of death to pay for our sins through His resurrection, the fulfillment of prophecy and becoming our Messiah, our Savior, our hope in a hopeless world. The reason we celebrate Christmas, the miracle that changed the world. It’s for me, for you, for us, and the world. May your Christmas season be joyful! Continue reading

December Youth Update

Snow, 24/7 Christmas songs on the radio, Hanging of the Greens @ church, shopping, bowl game selections, Christmas lights lining the streets, the season has arrived and it’s still November as I am writing this.  What does it all mean?  Despite all of these signs–there is still our “Christ” in Christmas.  May we always remember that!  Jesus Christ is born this day!

Winter Retreat – December 28-30 –pre-registration MUST take place by December 6th. The cost for the retreat is $105 and to register we must account for $50 by the above date.  Many students have the money in their youth accounts; however, a few do not have enough.  We have been having fundraisers, but some will be short, so students will be responsible for the balances.   If you would like to help a student financially to attend Winter Retreat, please see me and we will discuss how you could help.  This year the speaker will be Mark Shaner from the East Side CHOG in Anderson and the worship leader will be John Tibbs and his band from the Madison Park CHOG in Anderson.  It promises to be a GREAT weekend and we already have students from North Euclid CHOG and the St. Johns CHOG attending with us.  Along with going to Winter Retreat, we MUST have the 2012-2013 Medical Release and Permission forms.  Please complete and return these ASAP.  Don’t wait—sign up for WINTER RETREAT this week!

The Michigan Student Leadership Institute (MSLI) was a great success this year and we are proud to announce that Shane Mudd and Isabella Krolikowski successfully completed their 2nd year of a three-year program.  Congrats to them!

Fundraisers have been going well.  Thank you for supporting them.  The Apparel Sale, the Gift Card sale and the Bake Potato Buffet brought in money for the kids. We have a great blessing, we have been having almost 20 students in attendance each week at youth. However, when we divide the profits, they become smaller in spreading it around. Fortunately, we know that God will provide and bless!  Praise God for our growth!

Thank you students for the great participation in the Thanksgiving Basket assembly.  Lots of work, but many blessings for families that needed the food. Seeing God at work is always so exciting!

We will be having a Christmas Party for the Youth on Sunday afternoon, December 9th.  We are planning on going SWIMMING at Four Seasons (cost will be $3) plus a “WHITE ELEPHANT” gift exchange along with fellowship and refreshments at the church afterwards. The Winter Retreat is December 28-30 and there are no concrete plans yet for New Year’s Eve.  We will be finishing up our study of the 10 Commandments with #9 on December 2 and #10 on December 16.  There will be NO Youth meetings on December 23 through January 1.

Your prayers, support and encouragement are greatly appreciated and we look forward every week to sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ with our students through interaction, study, fellowship and relationship.  Thank you for sharing your son or daughter.

Love God, Love People!

Pastor Jerry

November Youth Update

We are BLESSED!  Today, as I watch the devastating destruction on the East Coast of our country, I feel very fortunate that we didn’t receive Super Storms off the ocean. We can deal with some rain, snow and wind.  The GOOD news, we were able to complete the raking of Olive’s yard before the weather arrived.  Took us three different days after school but the student turn-out to help was fantastic.  Thank You kids- you were great and a job well done.

Our Prayer Partner recruitment is coming.  With the addition of seven students (or maybe 5) this year, we are seeing the difference that prayer makes.  We have had our largest groups this year (20 kids) and the 6th grade youth meeting is working out well.  The 7-12 grades meet on Sunday nights and the 6th graders meet on Tuesdays @ 2:30.  We are working our way through the 10 Commandments this Fall with both groups. Plugging along with Romans on Sunday mornings.

On November 1 & 2, Shane Mudd and Isabella Krolikowski are participating in their 2nd Year of the Michigan Student Leadership Institute in Clarkston, Michigan.  I am the State Chairman of MSLI and we are anticipating almost one hundred selected students from churches across the state participating.  A great event for our student leaders in Michigan.

Our 2012-2013 Medical Release and Permission Forms have been mailed this month.  Students should have these forms completed to ride in the van plus attend all youth ministry activities.  The forms run from September 1, 2012 to August 31, 2013.  Once they are completed they are good for the year.  I am again enclosing permission slips for students who have not turned in a form when you receive your monthly parent letter.  PLEASE help us by completing these forms ASAP.

The Hayride at the Hyatt’s was fantastic.  There were three wagons of people, campfire, good food, good conversation and a beautiful evening.  Thank you Hyatt’s for another great Fall evening. We had a wonderful time at Grandma’s Pumpkin Patch as we bounced on the blow-up games, wandered the corn maze, fed the animals, rode on a hayride, sat by the campfire and watched the pigs race each other.   Connie then treated us to a supper of sloppy joes, chips, and donuts.   It was a great night as we finished it up with our weekly youth meeting.

We will be having a Bake Potato Bar on Sunday, November 11th to help raise funds for the Michigan CHOG Winter Retreat in December.  It begins at 4:45 PM in the Fellowship Hall, and then the youth will have their weekly youth meeting.  On November 18, our youth meeting that day will be a service project, packing Thanksgiving Baskets for families at the Aldersgate Methodist Church in town.  There is an area Thanksgiving service that evening at the Midland Christian Church on M-20, so we will not have an evening meeting.  On Sunday, December 9, we will be having a Christmas Party.  Watch for details.

Our next BIG event will be Winter Retreat on December 28-30, 2012. This event is for all students grades 6-12 and costs $105.  Registration is begins November 12 and has a $50 pre-registration due by December 8.  The final $55 balance will be due by Sunday, December 23.  Our guest speaker will be Pastor Mark Shaner and our worship leader will be John Tibbs.  Both are from Anderson, Indiana.  We will be continuing to do fundraisers in preparation for this great Church of God Winter event.

Also, you will be receiving in your church mailboxes (and, parents, through the mail) order blanks for our Gift Card Sale to benefit the Youth Ministry.  Gift cards make wonderful Christmas presents, but they can also be used for your weekly family needs, such as gas, groceries, dining out or just purchasing Christmas gifts. Please consider purchasing gift cards through the Mt. Haley Youth Ministry to help you and us.  The youth receive a percentage listed from each card sold.  All orders are due with the money (cash, or a check made out to Mt. Haley Church of God Youth) by November 25.  Cards should arrive back at the church by December 2.

Your prayers, support and encouragement are greatly appreciated and we look forward every week to sharing the Gospel of Jesus Christ with your student through interaction, study, fellowship and relationship.  Thank you for sharing your son or daughter.

Love God, Love People

Pastor Jerry