PHOTO COURTESY TERESA SMITH DONATION — On Sept. 14, Volusia County Women Who Care board member Lynn Grier, left, founding President Teresa Smith, second from left, and board member Karen Knox, far right, present a $17,300 check to Sarah and Scott Stephens, founders of Warrior Kids Foundation. Sarah is holding daughter Eloise, and Scott is holding daughter Eleanor, who is a pediatric cancer survivor and the inspiration for forming the foundation that supports the families of children battling cancer. Volusia County Women Who Care is an alliance of individuals impacting their community through streamlining fundraising for local nonprofit agencies. Members meet quarterly for one hour, during which time three members present information on a Volusia County nonprofit they are passionate about. The members then vote to select one organization to receive proceeds from the evening. To date, VCWWC has provided $250,000 in funding to local nonprofit agencies. For more information on Volusia County Women Who Care, visit

It’s Pumpkin Patch time!

Fall has arrived. Sometimes the subtle changes we experience here in Central Florida make it difficult to detect this seasonal change, but the temperatures have been slightly moderated.

Another telltale sign of fall’s arrival is the appearance of all things pumpkin. From pumpkin-flavored beverages, to pies and pastries and even the actual pumpkin itself, everywhere you go it is all about the pumpkin.

This year, at First United Methodist Church of DeLand, the pumpkins are scheduled to arrive at 2 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 9, and shortly thereafter the Pumpkin Patch will be open.

The patch is on the corner of South Alabama and East Howry avenues across from the DeLand Regional Library.

The hours of operation are 9:30 a.m.-7:30 p.m. Monday-Saturday, and noon-7:30 p.m. Sunday.

There will be games, picture opportunities and, of course, pumpkins of all sizes. The proceeds go to fund youth mission trips.

Why are people awaiting an antichrist, and who could it be?

First Unitarian Universalist Church of West Volusia in DeLand will present author and historian Bill Lazarus as the speaker at the Sunday, Oct. 10, Zoom meeting. Lazarus returns to give a historical perspective, thoughts and insight on the topic of an antichrist.

Lazarus is an educator, historian and author of many books. He has previously covered a variety of topics, such as “Where Christmas carols come from,” a fiction series called “Adventures in Bonding” and his latest book, Messiah, which is a history of the messiah concept.

Zoom services continue until further notice. Virtual services begin at 10:30 a.m. Sundays. Those wishing to attend are encouraged to join 10:15-10:25 a.m. for greetings before the service begins.

Unitarian Universalists are an open-minded, openhearted spiritual community where all are welcomed to learn together. First Unitarian Universalist participates in Interfaith Kitchen and other community projects.

Regular group meetings continue on Zoom and in person: The Book and Poetry clubs each meet monthly, the Covenant Group and a discussion group meet every two weeks, the Men’s Group meets weekly, and theGreen Team meets monthly. Special educational programs for children are available.

The church may be contacted through to learn more or to find out how to be included in groups.

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

Rev. Tracie Barrett to speak at Mosaic UU

Mosaic Unitarian Universalist Congregation, while not meeting face-to-face, is meeting online at 11 a.m. every Sunday. The title of the Sunday, Oct. 10, service is “What are you taking on your journey?”

As we journey in life, we often pick up souvenirs from various times and places. Some we look at and use regularly, but others are just weighing us down.

The Rev. Tracie Barrett encourages us to look at what we are still carrying around and whether it still serves us on our journey. All are welcome.

For more information on Mosaic, see the website at For instructions on how to join the virtual service, email to

‘No Other Name’

William Shakespeare posed this question in his play Romeo and Juliet, “What’s in a name?”

Names are very important to people. Expectant parents plan for the name of their anticipated bundle of joy, and many adults look to the meaning of their names to explain or validate certain character qualities that are a part of their personality.

Of course, for the members, friends and family at First United Methodist Church of DeLand, there is a name that is greater than all other names when it comes to faith and beliefs. And of course that name is Jesus, God’s son.

Bill and Gloria Gaither wrote a song titled “There’s Something About That Name” that expresses just how important and how powerful the name of Jesus is to His followers today.

This Sunday, Oct. 10, in the sermon series “To the Ends of the Earth,” the church will be looking at this very topic. The sermon title this week is “No Other Name.”

You and your family are encouraged to join the First United Methodist congregation meeting in person or online as everyone looks together into the power, significance and importance of this name above all names.

In-person traditional worship is at 8 a.m. and 11 a.m. in the sanctuary, and a contemporary service is at 9:30 a.m. in the Family Life Center. All three services are streamed live on Facebook on the First Church DeLand page, or they can be accessed through the website at

First Church also offers small-group Bible Studies at various times during the week: Young adults meet on Sunday evening, the youth groups meet at different times during the week, and there is a Saturday-morning men’s Bible study. If you would like to get connected to a small group for fellowship and sharing, call the church office for more details at 386-734-5113.

It takes everyone

This Sunday, Oct. 10, at First Presbyterian Church of DeLand, Pastor Michael Bodger will continue leading the congregation through an examination of Nehemiah and what this Old Testament book says to us today.

At the 9 a.m. contemporary and 11 a.m. traditional services, attendees will enjoy music, fellowship, prayer and the Lord’s Supper, open to all and COVID-safe.

At the close of the Babylonian exile, God instructs Nehemiah, the Jewish governor of the exiled people, to exhort Persian King Artaxerxes to support his return to the burned and ruined city of Jerusalem.

Nehemiah mobilizes the Jewish remnant and returning exiles in Jerusalem to repair the 10 gates and adjacent walls in various stages of decimation. People come together to restore areas near their residences. Each man, woman and child plays a role to fulfill the goal.

In the Kingdom of God today, as we look to resolve situations, we realize “It comes down to us!” Staring into the mirror, we comprehend that we have a role in accomplishing work set before us. It takes everyone!

Next Saturday, Oct. 16, First Pres will have a free food distribution 9-11 a.m. in the church parking lot. The church shares boxes of food for families of four for a week. The food is free to all comers.

First Pres will begin to offer a monthly Saturday service on the third Saturday outdoors on the basketball court. Bring your own chair, and prepare to COVID-distance at 6 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 16.

You can share both Sunday services by livestreaming and recording on Facebook, YouTube and the FPCD website. More details about the church appear in this paper’s Religion Directory.

Trinity UMC having Blessing of the Animals

This month, Trinity United Methodist Church in DeLand will have a Blessing of the Animals event, drive-in-style!

From 2 to 3 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 17, participants can drive under the church’s portico to receive a blessing for their pet. If you are outside your car, the church asks that your pet either be leashed or in a pet carrier.

Your pet will receive a blessing, a special treat, and probably an extra rub or two from Pastor Todd Bardin.

In the past, Trinity United Methodist has blessed dogs, cats, hamsters, gerbils, birds, fish, ferrets, turtles, lizards, snakes, spiders, chickens, horses, pigs, cows and donkeys.

If you have a pet that has passed away, you may bring a photo, collar, old toy or ashes, and church members will give thanks to God for the pet’s presence in your life.

Tell your friends and come on out as Trinity United Methodist celebrates our connection to God through all creation. If you have questions, call the church office at 386-734-4425. The church is at 306 W. Wisconsin Ave. in DeLand.



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