A message from Pastor Kathy...
“So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. 17 When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, 18 and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. 19 But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. 20 The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.” Luke 2: 15-20 NIV
The Thanksgiving celebration is in our past in this year of 2023. I hope your celebration gave you time to enjoy family, food, and friends. I appreciate all who came to the Thanksgiving service in Janesville. It was a time to be together as a parish community. We have much to be grateful for as I think back over this year. We grew as a community, we relied on one another, we enjoyed fellowship and we prayed for one another; and we supported our communities, and our world. Sounds like a faith family to me!
As we draw ever near to Advent 2023, it seems our season is being condensed by our calendar—Advent begins December 3rd and our fourth Sunday in Advent is also Christmas Eve. On Sunday, December 24th, our Sunday morning service will be virtual only so we can gather in our church homes for our Christmas Eve services. Christmas Eve Service times are: 4:30 pm Waterville EUMC, 6:00 pm Blooming Grove UMC , 7:30 pm Janesville UMC. I hope you can join us for one of these service times!
I chose a verse from the familiar story of Christ’s birth from Luke for this month’s consideration. In the chaos of delivering Jesus in a stable with shepherds from the hillsides coming to see the miracle of his birth, Mary treasures what happened and she “ponders them in her heart.” While we may not be in the chaos surrounding birth in a stable, we know chaos in our living. We are busy people who choose the things we prioritize that will benefit our family. I ponder what it is that we prioritize. It is my hope that you, too, ponder the things you prioritize for your family. Do we celebrate the Savior who is Jesus Christ our Lord? Do we place him first in our hearts and minds or does the busyness of living in 2023—soon to be 2024—put Jesus low on our list? May we be more like those who heart the shepherd’s story and may we be amazed by the One born to take away the sins of the world: Jesus Christ.
May you ponder, dear ones. Jerry and I wish you a blessed Christmas with our prayers that your New Year is blessed beyond imagination!
About Pastor Kathy...
Kathy King serves as the Pastor of the Prairie Lakes Parish - a three-point charge consisting of the Blooming Grove, Janesville, and Waterville Evangelical United Methodist Churches.
Pastor Kathy lives in Janesville with her husband Jerry and their three four-footed girls: Beatrice, Mocha, and Winnifred. Kathy and Jerry have three sons - Clint (and Julie), Jeremy (and Tiffany), and Aaron (and Trista), eight grandchildren, and one great-grandson.
Pastor Kathy has a degree in English and Communications, and in 2022, completed the United Methodist General Board of Discipleship Course of Study for Licensed Local Pastors. Kathy has a heart for the rural church and the relationships made possible through the example of love shown through Jesus Christ.