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November 30, 2014


Preparing for the Lord’s Day Worship

Please join us for Hymnsing 10 minutes before the start of the worship service. It will be a time of preparing our hearts for worship, as well as a time to learn new psalms and hymns.

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Have you noticed how the Thanksgiving Day is a day of wondering the difference between the outward appearance and the internal reality? “Is the turkey done? It looks like it is, but I’m not sure.” Indeed, what sets apart a skillful chef from a novice? It is knowing that the golden and scrumptious-looking outside of the turkey can be misleading. What seems quite done on the outside may not indeed be ready.

Maybe we are all a little bit like the turkey. We all start out frozen, disgusting, and unappetizing. Then the fires of God begin to work on us. Then, by degrees (pun intended) we begin to change on the outside, and, more importantly, also inside. Gradually, the stench of a dead flesh becomes the aroma that makes us give thanks.

Some of us today will find giving thanks very easy. God has richly blessed you. You feel his presence near. Others among us, however, will not find it so easy. Life has been hard. You have experienced grief. You have stumbled. And, maybe, you feel there is nothing for which you can really give thanks. So where do you find the reason and the strength to give thanks today (and every day)?

We turn our hearts to Jesus, who gave thanks as he awaited his suffering and death. On the night of his betrayal and arrest, he gave thanks as he gave the cup to his disciples (Mt 26:26–29). Thus we are assured. Jesus certainly knows the difficulty of giving thanks in hard circumstances. But Jesus also knew the joy that awaited him (Heb 12:2). Indeed, we also know, because of Jesus, the fires of God will not destroy, but will bring us the place of joy and blessing. So we give thanks, both when thanksgiving is easy, and when it is hard. We give thanks, and in doing so take hold of God’s promises. “I thank my God…And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.” (Phil 1:3–6)

Indeed, let us give thanks!

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Call to Worship

Philippians 1:3–6 (p. 980)

TH #98 “Now Thank We All Our God”

Prayer of Invocation

Reading of the Law and Confession of Sin

Micah 6:6–8 (p. 779)

Prayer of Confession

Assurance of Pardon

“As a father shows compassion to his children, so the LORD shows compassion to those who fear him.” (Psalms 103:13 ESV)

TH ##627 “Behold the Throne of Grace”

Presentation of Tithes and Offering

Pastoral Prayer

The Proclamation of God’s Word

1 Samuel 7 (p. 230)

Ebenezer

Rev. Ken Han

The Sacrament of The Lord’s Supper

Baptized Christians who are members in good standing in Reformed or evangelical churches are invited to participate. Otherwise, please let the bread and the cup pass you by. During the distribution of the bread we will sing TH #647 “How Sweet the Name of Jesus Sounds” stanzas 1–3 during the distribution of the bread, and stanzas 4–6 during the distribution of the cup.

TH #635 “How Good It Is to Thank the Lord”

Benediction

Growth Resources

Family Devotion for the Week

We have some new resources for you at the information table, including several new CCEF mini books, as well as other edifying books. Be sure to check them out!

For children: Long Story Short and Old Story New: chapter 77. First Catechism Qs. 148–149. For adults: Shorter Catechism Qs. 105–106. Do you struggle to pray? (Who doesn’t?) Do you need encouragement? (Who doesn’t?) We encourage you to read this week’s Shorter Catechism lesson on the third and fourth petitions of the Lord’s Prayer.

Upcoming Events and Notices

November 30 (Lord’s Day 10:20 AM): Please join us for Hymnsing, a time of preparing our hearts for worship in praise, and for learning new hymns for worship.

December 6 (Saturday 7 AM): All men are invited for a time of study, prayer, and fellowship.

December 7 (Lord’s Day 9:30): The children’s Bible Lesson will meet after the worship service.

December 21 (Lord’s Day): Please join us for a time of Advent celebration and fellowship. More information will be forthcoming.

Nursery Volunteers

November 30: Liza Beede & Amanda Severns

December 7: Michelle & Michael Kay




November 23, 2014


Preparing for the Lord’s Day Worship

Please join us for Hymnsing 10 minutes before the start of the worship service. It will be a time of preparing our hearts for worship, as well as a time to learn new psalms and hymns.

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When you come to church, do you actually expect to be blessed? We should. Or, we must. When we come, we come before our Father, gracious and kind, eager to bless us. Without this knowledge, the Jewish worship and prayer had degenerated into showing off who could string up most words in a row, all (and only) in order to impress people. Once we are convinced worship is not about God blessing us, it inevitably becomes a place where we crave man’s praise.

But Jesus taught us to call God “Our Father.” And with this he teaches us to expect great things from him when we come before him, when we call on him, and when we pray. Expect him to bless you this Lord’s Day.

The Tenth Commandment, which forbids coveting, commands us to be content. Our contentment is rooted in God who gives himself freely to us, in life, and in worship. Come expecting that God will bless you. And he will bless you indeed!

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Call to Worship

Matthew 6:5–15 (p. 811)

“How Deep the Father’s Love for Us”

Prayer of Invocation

Reading of the Law and Confession of Sin

Exodus 20:17 (p. 61)

Prayer of Confession

Assurance of Pardon

“The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” (Lamentations 3:22–23 ESV)

TH ##37 “All That I Am I Owe to Thee”

Presentation of Tithes and Offering

Pastoral Prayer

The Proclamation of God’s Word

1 Samuel 6

Who Is Able to Stand before the LORD?

Rev. Ken Han

The Sacrament of The Lord’s Supper

Baptized Christians who are members in good standing in Reformed or evangelical churches are invited to participate. Otherwise, please let the bread and the cup pass you by. During the distribution of the bread we will sing TH #647 “How Sweet the Name of Jesus Sounds” stanzas 1–3 during the distribution of the bread, and stanzas 4–6 during the distribution of the cup.

TH #465 “Marvelous Grace of Our Loving Lord”

Benediction

Growth Resources

Family Devotion for the Week

We have some new resources for you at the information table, including several new CCEF mini books, as well as other edifying books. Be sure to check them out!

For children: Long Story Short and Old Story New: chapter 76. First Catechism Qs. 146–147. For adults: Shorter Catechism Qs. 103–104. Do you struggle to pray? (Who doesn’t?) Do you need encouragement? (Who doesn’t?) We encourage you to read this week’s Shorter Catechism lesson on the third and fourth petitions of the Lord’s Prayer.

Upcoming Events and Notices

November 23 (Lord’s Day 10:20 AM): Please join us for Hymnsing, a time of preparing our hearts for worship in praise, and for learning new hymns for worship.

November 23 (Lord’s Day 9:30 AM): Please come and join us for Sunday School as we consider a biblical response to the death of Brittany Maynard.

December 6 (Saturday 7 AM): All men are invited for a time of study, prayer, and fellowship.

December 21 (Lord’s Day): Please join us for a time of Advent celebration and fellowship. More information will be forthcoming.

Nursery Volunteers

November 23: Kelly & Rebecca Rogers

November 30: Liza Beede & Amanda Severns




November 16, 2014


Preparing for the Lord’s Day Worship

Please join us for Hymnsing 10 minutes before the start of the worship service. It will be a time of preparing our hearts for worship, as well as a time to learn new psalms and hymns.

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Sean Severns shares with us his reflections from James 3:6–10 and Exodus 20:16.

When God created man, he created him to subdue the earth, to rule over the birds of the sky, the fish of the sea, and the beasts of the field. And James notes that man has, in some measure (though perverted by sin), exercised this dominion. However, James reminds us that no matter how far our dominion extends, nor how powerful our rule becomes, we will never in our own strength have mastery over our tongue, for it is a “restless evil, full of deadly poison.” Indeed, the tongue is a fire, a world of unrighteousness, and from it comes lying, gossip, backbiting, slander, yes, even rejoicing over others disgrace and misfortune. All of these and the like constitutes “false witness,” and a breaking of the 9th commandment which says, “You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.” As James says, beloved, “these things ought not to be so.” For when we bear false witness against our neighbor, we bear false witness against God. And when we gossip or slander, we testify that goodness, justice, and truth are of no concern to our God.

But scripture tells us precisely the opposite, and instead emphasizes the sanctity of truth. For as the psalmist writes, “God’s Word is the sum of truth” (Ps 119:160). And as we read in John 8:32, it is this very truth which sets us free from the bondage of sin. Therefore we are to deal honestly with our neighbors in sincerity of heart. And praise be to God that He has not left us in our own strength to tame our tongue, and that we can deal honestly with our neighbors. For God has given us his Holy spirit who enables us to control our tongues as we submit to the Lordship of Christ. And although we will not with a perfect mastery bring our tongues into full submission in this life, by the Holy Spirit our tongues can bring glory to God rather than serve the purposes of the flesh. And indeed, our tongues bring God the most glory when we use it to worship Him. So with hearts full of thanksgiving, let us glorify God with our tongues as we gather to worship Him on this Lord’s Day.

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Call to Worship

James 3:6–10

TH #88 “With Grateful Heart My Thanks I Bring”

Prayer of Invocation

Reading of the Law and Confession of Sin

Exodus 20:16

Prayer of Confession

Assurance of Pardon

“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1:9 ESV)

TH #149 “Teach Me, O Lord, Your Way of Truth”

Presentation of Tithes and Offering

Pastoral Prayer

The Proclamation of God’s Word

1 Samuel 5

The Grace of Darkness

Rev. Ken Han

The Sacrament of The Lord’s Supper

Baptized Christians who are members in good standing in Reformed or evangelical churches are invited to participate. Otherwise, please let the bread and the cup pass you by. During the distribution of the bread we will sing TH #647 “How Sweet the Name of Jesus Sounds” stanzas 1–3 during the distribution of the bread, and stanzas 4–6 during the distribution of the cup.

TH #605 “All the Way My Savior Leads Me”

Benediction

Growth Resources

Family Devotion for the Week

We have some new resources for you at the information table, including several new CCEF mini books, as well as other edifying books. Be sure to check them out!

For children: Long Story Short and Old Story New: chapter 75. First Catechism Qs. 144–145. For adults: Shorter Catechism Q. 102. Do you struggle to pray? (Who doesn’t?) Do you need encouragement? (Who doesn’t?) We encourage you to read this week’s Shorter Catechism lesson, and let it encourage you to come before your Father.

Upcoming Events and Notices

November 14 (Friday 7 PM): The Session will meet at the Summers’ home.

November 15 (Saturday 7 AM): All men are invited for a time of study, prayer, and fellowship.

November 16 (Lord’s Day 9:30 AM): Please come and join us for Sunday School as we consider a biblical response to the death of Brittany Maynard.

November 16 (Lord’s Day 10:20 AM): Please join us for Hymnsing, a time of preparing our hearts for worship in praise, and for learning new hymns for worship.

November 16 (Lord’s Day): Children’s Bible Lessons will meet after the worship service.

December 21 (Lord’s Day): Please join us for a time of Advent celebration and fellowship. More information will be forthcoming.

Nursery Volunteers

November 16: Yoori Han & Mari Nienhuis

November 23: Kelly & Rebecca Rogers




November 9, 2014


Preparing for the Lord’s Day Worship

Please join us for Hymnsing 10 minutes before the start of the worship service. It will be a time of preparing our hearts for worship, as well as a time to learn new psalms and hymns.

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A once-popular song says, “Don’t worry, be happy.” I don’t know about you, but I have yet to meet a worried person who stopped worrying just because someone said, “Don’t worry, be happy.” Our worries reflect something real, that this world isn’t what we had hoped it would be, that there are things that scare us, that at times, we feel lost. “Don’t worry, be happy” is a lousy advice. When we have seen our home equity crash, retirement savings deplete, jobs disappear, loved ones get sick and die, we can’t just bury our heads in the sand and pretend everything will be fine if we just stop worrying. We need a reason to stop worrying.

If so, what is the reason that we can bring us peace? The reason we hope, rejoice in suffering, and live with “a peace that surpasses all understanding” is that God has promised, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”

The first two passages for this week’s worship are on the surface about our desire for money and wealth. But more importantly, they are about finding contentment in God. “Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have, for he has said, ”I will never leave you nor forsake you."“ Now, what exactly do we have that the Holy Spirit says, ”be content with what you have“? What we have is nothing less than the Lord, who says, ”I will never leave you nor forsake you."

Christians are not immune from worrying. If anything, we worry more. Those who do not know the Lord are content as long as their needs are met. But we care about more than just our little lives. We care about the well-being of the Church, about preserving godliness in the next generation, about the experiences of believers throughout the world, and many other things besides. Indeed, to be a believer means to have our hearts enlarged. And in this world, that surely and inevitably, means realizing very clearly how far this world has fallen from God’s glory. Not to mention the myriads of challenges we face in our daily living! We are not immune from worrying.

Yet we have a reason that drives out all fear. And that is why we worship. The times are indeed tough. And it is so easy to let our circumstances drive us into fear and despair. But when we worship the Lord, he leads us into confidence and joy. In worship we remember “we have him” and “he has us.”

Call to Worship

Hebrews 13:5–6 (p. 1009)

TH #457 “Come, Thou Fount of Every Blessing”

Prayer of Invocation

Reading of the Law and Confession of Sin

Exodus 20:15 (p. 61)

Prayer of Confession

Assurance of Pardon

“And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever believes in him may have eternal life.” (John 3:14–15 ESV)

TH #148 “How Shall the Young Direct Their Way?”

Presentation of Tithes and Offering

Pastoral Prayer

The Proclamation of God’s Word

Mark 3:1–6

Jesus Restores the Sabbath

Mr. Sean Severns

The Sacrament of The Lord’s Supper

Baptized Christians who are members in good standing in Reformed or evangelical churches are invited to participate. Otherwise, please let the bread and the cup pass you by. During the distribution of the bread we will sing TH #647 “How Sweet the Name of Jesus Sounds” stanzas 1–3 during the distribution of the bread, and stanzas 4–6 during the distribution of the cup.

TH #512 “I Lay My Sins on Jesus”

Benediction

Growth Resources

Family Devotion for the Week

We have some new resources for you at the information table, including several new CCEF mini books, as well as other edifying books. Be sure to check them out!

For children: Long Story Short and Old Story New: chapter 75. First Catechism Qs. 144–145. For adults: Shorter Catechism Q. 102. Do you struggle to pray? (Who doesn’t?) Do you need encouragement? (Who doesn’t?) We encourage you to read this week’s Shorter Catechism lesson, and let it encourage you to come before your Father.

Upcoming Events and Notices

November 8 (Saturday 12 PM): All women are invited to a time of tea and fellowship at the Kay home.

November 9 (Lord’s Day 10:20 AM): Please join us for Hymnsing, a time of preparing our hearts for worship in praise, and for learning new hymns for worship.

November 9 (Lord’s Day): Please join us for our monthly potluck fellowship meal after the worship service.

November 13 (Thursday 10 AM): All women are invited to the Han home for a time of study, prayer, and fellowship.

November 14 (Friday 7 PM): The Session will meet.

November 15 (Saturday 7 AM): All men are invited for a time of study, prayer, and fellowship.

November 16 (Lord’s Day): Children’s Bible Lessons will meet after the worship service.

Nursery Volunteers

November 9: Michelle & Michael Kay

November 16: Yoori Han & Mari Nienhuis




November 2, 2014


Preparing for the Lord’s Day Worship

Please join us for Hymnsing 10 minutes before the start of the worship service. It will be a time of preparing our hearts for worship, as well as a time to learn new psalms and hymns. We are currently learning a John Newton hymn, “I Aksed the Lord” and hope to sing it soon during worship. You can listen to it here, and see the sheet music for piano and for singing.

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As believers who love the Lord, our earnest prayer is “Soli Deo Gloria.” To God alone be the glory! Thus we open our worship with Revelation 5:11–14, and we joyfully add our voices to the refrain, and sing, “Worthy is the Lamb!” To him alone be the glory!

And that is still our prayer as we come to the Seventh Commandment. The commandment which forbids adultery requires a deep dedication to the pursuit of holiness. When we consider the lack of holiness in our lives, the proper response is to give glory to God whose Law exposes the sickness of our souls. And we give glory to him, for the pardon he has granted us in Christ, for the promise of that he will make us, by degrees, like his Son. And with that promise we answer the condemning voice of our conscience and the accusation of the Evil One.

A mighty fortress is our God, a bulwark never failing;
Our helper he amid the flood of mortal ills prevailing.
For still our ancient foe doth seek to work us woe;
His craft and power are great; and armed with cruel hate,
On earth is not his equal.

Amen, and amen!

Call to Worship

Revelation 5:11–14

TH #66 “Not unto us, O Lord of Heaven”

Prayer of Invocation

Reading of the Law and Confession of Sin

Exodus 20:14

Prayer of Confession

Assurance of Pardon

“For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him; as far as the east is from the west, so far does he remove our transgressions from us.” (Psalms 103:11–12 ESV)

TH #92 “A Mighty Fortress Is Our God”

Presentation of Tithes and Offering

Pastoral Prayer

The Proclamation of God’s Word

1 Samuel 4

The Weight of Glory

Rev. Ken Han

The Sacrament of The Lord’s Supper

Baptized Christians who are members in good standing in Reformed or evangelical churches are invited to participate. Otherwise, please let the bread and the cup pass you by. During the distribution of the bread we will sing TH #426 “ ”Till He Come“! ” stanzas 1–2, and stanzas 3–4 during the distribution of the cup.

TH #186 “One There Is, above All Others”

Benediction

Growth Resources

Family Devotion for the Week

We have some new resources for you at the information table, including several new CCEF mini books, as well as other edifying books. Be sure to check them out!

For children: Long Story Short and Old Story New: chapter 74. First Catechism Qs. 142–143. For adults: Shorter Catechism Qs. 101. Do you struggle to pray? (Who doesn’t?) Do you need encouragement? (Who doesn’t?) We encourage you to read this week’s Shorter Catechism lesson, and let it encourage you to come before your Father.

Upcoming Events and Notices

November 1 (Saturday 7 AM): All men are invited for a time of study, prayer, and fellowship.

November 2 (Lord’s Day 2 AM): Please note the Daylight Saving Time ends.

November 2 (Lord’s Day 10 AM): Please join us for our prayer meeting.

November 2 (Lord’s Day 10:20 AM): Please join us for Hymnsing, a time of preparing our hearts for worship in praise, and for learning new hymns for worship. We are currently learning a John Newton hymn, “I Asked the Lord” and hope to sing it soon during worship. You can listen to it here, and see the sheet music for piano and for singing.

November 2 (Lord’s Day): Children’s Bible Lessons will meet after the worship service.

November 8 (Saturday 12 PM): All women are invited to a time of tea and fellowship at the Kay home.

Nursery Volunteers

November 2: Liza Beede & Amanda Severns

November 9: Michelle & Michael Kay




June 29, 2014


Preparing for the Lord’s Day Worship

The Han family has been living through a mild inconvenience of sorts. Due to a water leak under the sink that went undetected, much of our kitchen needed to be demolished and reconstructed, along with areas connected with the kitchen. Now that the work of reconstruction is in full swing, we have been treated to some spiritual lessons. When we moved into this house in 2008, we found Roman Catholic saint medals taped to every single window sill in the house. The previous occupants, apparently, were very superstitious. It seems they placed these medals at every window, perhaps, to ward of evil spirits.

This week the workers have been removing our damaged floor. In the process they have discovered Roman Catholic saint medals placed in the hollow chipped out of the concrete slab beneath the floor. They have also found more taped behind the baseboard at various places around the house. Interestingly, they have also found some coins with Chinese inscribed in them. I can only guess they are amulets of some sort. I guess they weren’t such devout Roman Catholics, after all; they were hedging their bets! Or, maybe they were great Roman Catholics; Roman Catholicism has always had syncretistic bent, adopting, and adapting to, prevalent customs and habits of its surroundings. Indeed, one of the reasons Roman Catholicism has spread so widely is that it never challenged too seriously the native superstitions and faiths, but instead absorbed and incorporated them into its piety and practice.

In contrast, the heirs of the Protestant Reformation have insisted on the utter superiority of Christ over all faiths and religions. In this regard we are utterly inflexible, and therefore hopelessly out of touch with the mores of the present culture. We insist there is no salvation apart from Christ. It also means we do not hedge our bets. While the world runs after the trendiest guru and expert, we know that when we have Christ, we have everything. Yes, the exclusivity of Christ means utter sufficiency of our Savior. If we have him, we have him. He is not a half-savior, but the complete and sufficient Savior.

Call to Worship

Psalms 71:17–21

TH #94 “How Firm a Foundation”

Prayer of Invocation

Reading of the Law and Confession of Sin

Romans 1:16–17

Prayer of Confession

Assurance of Pardon

“But when the goodness and loving kindness of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that being justified by his grace we might become heirs according to the hope of eternal life.” (Titus 3:4–7 ESV)

TH #77 “Praise, My Soul, the King of Heaven”

Presentation of Tithes and Offering

Pastoral Prayer

The Proclamation of God’s Word

James 2:20–26

Faith Alive? Don’t Be An Airhead

Rev. Ken Han

The Sacrament of The Lord’s Supper

Baptized Christians who are members in good standing in Reformed or evangelical churches are invited to participate. Otherwise, please let the bread and the cup pass you by. During the distribution of the bread we will sing TH #56 “When All Your Mercies, O My God” stanzas 1–3, and stanzas 4–6 during the distribution of the cup.

TH #731 “Doxology”

Benediction

Growth Resources

Family Devotion for the Week

For children: Long Story Short and Old Story New: chapter 60. First Catechism Qs. 116–117. For adults: Shorter Catechism Q. 81. In this week’s Shorter Catechism lesson we consider the Tenth Commandment, or, doing all things for Jesus Christ.

Upcoming Events and Notices

June 27 (Friday 7 PM): The Session will meet at the Summers’ home.

July 7 (Lord’s Day 9:30 AM): Please join us for prayer meeting.

Nursery Volunteers

June 29: Michelle Kay & Amanda Severns

July 6: Kelly & Rebecca Rogers




Marcia Hoel Update (April 15, 2014)


Dear Church,

"Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of his saints." (Psalms 116:15 ESV)

Marcia Hoel entered into glory 12:40AM, April 15.

As I sat beside Marcia and saw Marcia in decline, I often thought about the hymn "A Debtor to Mercy Alone." This hymn ends with the line:

Yes, I to the end shall endure, as sure as the earnest is giv'n;
more happy, but not more secure, the glorified spirits in heav'n.

How full of the gospel comfort is this song! The "earnest" is the Holy Spirit, who was given to help us in our weakness. When Marcia became too weak to speak or to pray, the Spirit interceded for her with groanings too deep for words (Romans 8:26ff). And the Spirit in you was praying through you for Marcia as well. As your pastor I am grateful for your prayers, and the Spirit who dwells in us.

The hymn also speaks of the saints in heaven as “more happy, but not more secure.” This is a great encouragement for us as we fight our daily battles. So often it feels as though we are perishing. But the glorious truth is that God holds us faithfully in this life, and we are as safe and secure as the glorified spirits in heaven.

And how sweet for Marcia. For she is now a glorified spirit in heaven. She is now, indeed, “more happy.”

We all loved Marcia and we mourn her suffering and death. Yet we do so with the sure knowledge that Marcia fought the good fight until the very end (I saw with my own eyes), trusted and loved her Savior, and has entered into her reward and rest. Jesus comforted Marcia through her last trial, and may he now comfort all of you who loved her.

I had a chance to visit with Marcia’s family today. Most of Marcia’s children live in Colorado, and need to return. Thus it seems best to the family to hold a memorial service for Marcia in a few weeks’ time. Marcia’s family is deeply grateful for all your prayers and offers of help.

I will forward details concerning the memorial service, and what help we can offer her family, in due time.

In Christ,

Pastor Ken