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 ‘Our Church, Our Congregation, Our Principles in Action’ 

Fi r s t Un i t a r i a n Universalist Church of West Volusia in DeLand is continuing to host virtual services at 10:30 a.m. Sundays. Those wishing to attend are encouraged to join over Zoom from 10:15 to 10:25 a.m. for greetings before the service begins. Unitarians are an open-minded, open-hearted spiritual community where all are welcomed to learn together. 

Regular group meetings continue on Zoom: The Book and Poetry clubs each meet monthly, the Covenant Group meets every two weeks, and the Men’s Group meets weekly. The church can be contacted through www.uudeland.org to learn more. 

On Sunday, Nov. 8, the sitting president will present an encompassing and energizing overview of the people, the functions, and the work of our beloved community. This “State of the Church” address will combine practical information about the church’s accomplishments and struggles, with the spiritual warmth members find in gathering together. 

This presentation will cover general information for the annual meeting, but in a format that is fun and appropriate for any visitors as well. 

The service will be followed by an intermission, and then members and interested friends will reconvene to conclude the required business of the church. 

The Zoom ID for Sunday services is the same every week: Zoom ID: 927 1881 9188. 

‘Invaluable’ 

On Sunday, Nov. 8, Pastor Owen Stricklin of First United Methodist Church of DeLand continues the sermon series “I’m In.” The sermon for this Sunday is “Invaluable,” based on 1 Corinthians 12:12-31. These are the verses where St. Paul compares those who follow Christ to the different parts of the human body: 

“The human body has many parts, but the many parts make up only one body. So it is with the body of Christ. Some of us are Jews, some are Gentiles, some are slaves, some are free. But we have all been baptized into Christ’s body by one Spirit, and we have all received the same Spirit. If one part suffers, all the parts suffer with it, and if one part is honored, all parts are glad.” 

In honor of Veterans Day, the Chancel Choir ensemble, consisting of church members and Stetson University students, will present “America!” This is a medley of “America: My Country, ’Tis of Thee” and “America the Beautiful.” It will be led by Fred Eshleman and accompanied by Sharon Bissinger

Those who wish to see a live service may now view it on the internet. The in-person 9:30 a.m. contemporary service in the Life Enrichment Center and the in-person 11 a.m. traditional service in the sanctuary are being live-streamed. Those who wish to view them online should go to the church website at Firstchurchdeland.org. Once there, click on sermon/media during the time of the service. The services may also be viewed anytime after the hours when they are premiered. 

The early service will be a drive-in service at 8 a.m. in the parking lot of Building 6. All protocols for in-person worship will be followed; masks are required, and there will be temperature checks and social distancing. Hand sanitizers will also be used. 

The Gift Card Program, under the sponsorship of the United Methodist Men, will resume this month. This is an opportunity to purchase gift cards to many businesses and restaurants, which will, in return, refund the church a small percentage of the cost of the gift card. Contact Robert Lawson through the church office to volunteer to sell the gift cards on Sunday mornings. 

Red poinsettias may be ordered now to be placed on the church altar in honor or memory of a loved one. They will be placed in the sanctuary and in the LEC on the Sunday before Christmas. After the Christmas Eve service, those who purchased the poinsettias will be able to take them home. Contact the church office if you would like to place an order. The cost is $5 each. 

A Packing Party for “Samaritan’s Purse – Christmas Child” will take place Sunday, Nov. 15. This is an international relief organization that ships the shoeboxes to children all over the world and to children on Native American reservations in the United States. The boxes, filled with small toys, hygiene items and school supplies, are shipped in mid-December and arrive in communities from late December to early spring, depending upon the remoteness and condition of roads in the villages they are sent to. 

The Packing Party begins at 3 p.m. in the LEC. Families should bring a shoebox for packing, and donations are requested to cover the cost of the items. A pizza party will be held after the packing is complete. Reservations are needed by Sunday, Nov. 8. Contact Barbara Stricklin

The church office is open 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Monday- Friday. The phone number is 386-734-5113. 

Activities of First Pres DeLand 

First Presbyterian Church of DeLand will celebrate Veterans Day Sunday, Nov. 8, by recognizing the contributions of the many U.S. service members who remain part of the church family and celebrating them in on-site and virtual services. 

Pastor Michael Bodger will be preaching from the lectionary readings in the Book of Matthew for the next three weeks. In Matthew’s Gospel, Jesus clarifies what it means to be ready for His return. We live “in between” the Incarnation and the Second Coming. How are we doing?

This week, the Scripture reading comes from chapter 25, verses 1-13, and the parable of the 10 bridesmaids. The sermon title is “Keep Awake.” Pastor Bodger will be exploring what that means in relationship to our responsibility for our spiritual readiness as we go about living life.

If you will not attend either the 9 a.m. contemporary service in the fellowship hall or the 11 a.m. traditional service in the sanctuary, you can join the worship team on the First Pres website at fpcdeland.org or on Facebook.

Holy Communion has become a part of each Sunday service; and if you worship virtually, please have your own elements ready to join Pastor Bodger when he leads that part of the service.

The church office now opens at 8:30 a.m. and closes at 2 p.m. Monday-Friday. When you arrive, please ring the bell and step back to let staff know you are present, or phone 386-734-6212 to announce you are waiting in the parking lot.

Please remember to honor the COVID protocol posted on-site whenever you attend services or meet on campus. “Wash Up, Back Up and Mask Up” will keep us safe.

During this month of Thanksgiving celebration, First Pres is participating in “30 DaysThankful” to cultivate the spiritual practice of gratitude. You can find the booklets on the church’s website, at Sunday-morning services, or at the church office. They offer scriptural guides for your daily reflections. Daily prompts appear on the FPCD Facebook page to help readers reflect on the many blessings we enjoy during turbulent times.

Operation Christmas Child is drawing to a close on Nov. 15, so please remember to create your own box for children or go online to find out how you can design your box online. Organized annually by Samaritan’s Purse, the program impacts children internationally through evangelism, discipleship and church growth.

Activities at 1st Christian Church of DeLand

The Rev. Elizabeth Carrasquillo of First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) of DeLand welcomes all to the 10:45 a.m. service Sunday, Nov. 8. Her sermon topic is “Why God Does Not Answer Prayer?” based on Matthew 6:5-13. Music Director Julie Rechner provides various sources of music throughout the service.

Communion is offered to all present who are believers in Jesus Christ.

For those who are not comfortable attending church yet because of COVID-19, the worship service is posted as a live video option on Facebook. A second recording with a video camera is made and available by Monday afternoon uploaded to Facebook, with closed captioning. The worship services can be found at: First Christian Church – DeLand Disciples of Christ. Click on the “Videos” tab, and choose the message of your choice. Posted comments are very much appreciated.

A Zoom Bible Study is at 7 p.m. Wednesdays. To be included, contact the church office at 386-734-0677 for the Zoom invitation.

Just a reminder that the Lawn Sale is on tap 7 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 7, with a large selection of clothing, furniture, housewares, collectible bears, plus many other things. Proceeds help with refurbishing the playground and the youth program that includes tutoring 4-5:30 p.m. Wednesdays.

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