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Mt Carmel United Methodist Church
December 4, 2013
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Matt was excited about being a shepherd. It’s not often that you get to wear your blue bathrobe to preschool! 

That morning we argued about what to wear under the robe. He argued that he should wear his superman pajamas. After all, you are supposed to wear superman pajamas with that robe! 

For my part, I argued that there were no superman shepherds. Shepherds wore plain clothes. I instructed him to wear a plain shirt and plain pants. 

I thought I won the argument. When I dropped him off at preschool, he was wearing a plain brown shirt and sweat pants. 

I should have known better. 

Later that day, Ed and I sat in the audience as angels told Mary and Joseph the news. They trekked across the room. Then the angels appeared to the shepherds, and Matt and the others surrounded the couple and their new baby. 

Matt looked out from the stage, made eye contact, and smirked at me. He lifted one side of his bathrobe to reveal…the superman shirt he had sneaked in to school. 

What made me angriest was not the disobedience. It was the smirk! 

Since then I have reconciled myself to the fact that there will never be a perfect Christmas. I have yet o wake up to beautifully wrapped presents under the tree—there is always that one present that I remember at the last minute that I think may be hidden in my cowboy boots or maybe it’s in the hat box in the attic... 

But mostly it’s never a perfect Christmas because I don’t dream big enough. I think of toys for the boys rather than asking what gift I could give God. 

For Christmas to be a time of peace, is there something I need to confess to God?

For Christmas to be a time of hope, is there someone I need to comfort? 

For Christmas to be a time of joy, is there someone I need to forgive? 

For Christmas to be a time of love, is there someone to whom I should reach out? 

I want to dream big. Bigger even than a superman shirt! I want to dream God-size dreams.

I'll see you this Sunday,

Pastor Cyndi McDonald 
Mount Carmel United Methodist Church 


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In the Newsletter this Week:
  • From the Pastor
  • Children's Art on Bulletin Covers
  • 8:30 Service / Choir at Berkeley Lake on Dec. 8th
  • Kid's Night Out - Dec. 6 - 6:00 - 9:00 PM
  • Poinsettia Orders Taken through Dec. 10
  • Angel Tree: Through Dec. 11
  • Breakfast with Santa - December 14 - 9:00 & 10:00 AM
  • Children's Ministry
    • Sunday School 
    • Christmas Pageant - December 8 - 6:00 PM
  • Staff Christmas Gift
  • NCM Needs in December
  • UMW Christmas Card Delivery
  • Women's Book Club - Dec. 6 - 7:00 PM
  • "Strikes for Jesus" Bowling - Dec. 7 - 11:00 AM
  • Down Home Holiday - Dec. 22 - 6:30 PM
  • Walk Through Bethlehem - Dec. 13 - 15
  • 12 Days of Caring - Outreach Opportunity Dec. 19 - 22


Children's Art on Bulletin Covers


Thank you to Ethan Kilmer for his rendition of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego in the fiery furnace.

Watch for more of our children's artwork on upcoming Sunday bulletins.


8:30 Service on Sunday, Dec. 8th at Berkeley Lake Chapel


Come and hear a sneak preview of our choir's Christmas program at the Berkeley Lake Chapel!

Directions from Mt. Carmel: Turn RIGHT from parking lot, onto S. Old Peachtree Rd. Turn LEFT at first street onto Lou Ivy Rd. Turn RIGHT at dead-end into Bush Rd. Turn RIGHT at dead-end into Berkeley Lake Rd. Chapel is immediately on your left.

So that we may support the choir at Berkeley Lake, there will NOT be an 8:30 service at Mt. Carmel on Dec. 8th.


 Kid's Night Out - Dec. 6th - 6 until 9 PM

Mark your calendar for a fun night for your children on Friday, December 6th!

The Mt. Carmel Youth will offer this as a Service Project which will include pizza, gingerbread houses, movie and other fun activities for children ages 3 years through 5th grade. Your evening begins at 6:00 and ends at 9:00. 

Please reserve your spot by emailing Marian LongThere will be a $5.00 per family reservation fee which can be paid to Marian also, by 3:00 PM on Thursday, December 5. This will help to defray the cost of pizza and supplies.  


Poinsettia Orders Taken through Dec. 10th

Once again, the Mt. Carmel United Methodist Women will sponsor the placing of poinsettias in the sanctuary for the Christmas season. If you would like to have a poinsettia placed in the church in honor or memory of someone, please fill out the order form in Sunday's bulletin and put it, with your check, in the offering plate or drop by the church office.

Cost: $9.00 per plant 

Please make checks payable to: Mt. Carmel UMW. 

DEADLINE FOR ORDERS: Sunday, Dec. 10, 2013


Angel Tree Helps Local Children

Each year, Mt. Carmel sponsors families in need and supplies them with gifts and food for the holidays. 

This year families will be included from local schools, Norcross Cooperative Ministry, and Action Ministries of the North Georgia Conference. 

The tree stands upstairs in the foyer and is decorated with paper angels. Each angel has a gift that a member of the family has requested, and a number. To participate, just choose an angel and on the sheet nearby, sign your name beside that angel’s number. Then do your shopping and attach the angel to the gift. 

The gifts MUST be returned to Mt. Carmel by Wednesday, DECEMBER 11th. Just place them back under the Angel Tree, or bring to the church office during the week. 

Please DO NOT WRAP THE GIFTS. Either place the gift in an open gift bag, or leave it unwrapped. This will help when sorting. 

Thank you for sharing the spirit of Christmas!


Breakfast with Santa!  December 14

Dear Friends, 

It’s that time again! Breakfast with Santa is right around the corner and reservations are appreciated! We will have a 9:00 and a 10:00 seating on Saturday, December 14. Breakfast includes pancakes, bacon, juices, coffee, tea, and Colby’s Cocoa! 

Santa will be patiently waiting in the sanctuary for everyone who has a wish. You all know, our Santa is the best, the most kind, and the most patient so even the children with the shyest of natures will be comfortable. 

Please email mtcarmelpres@comcast.net with your reservation. 

The cost of the breakfast has remained the same for the last 5 years. Adults are $10.00, children and students are $7.00, and children under 2 are free. If you are a grad student, you pay a student fee. We have to support those who are trying to educate themselves, right? 

Also, if anyone has the energy and time to donate a centerpiece, it would be deeply appreciated. We will have a raffle at the end of the morning to see who are the winners. You do not need to be present to win! We are totally honest here. A phone call or email message will be sent to you should you have left before the raffle! Win-win in my book! 

See you then! 

In joy and love, 
Lorrie


Children's Ministry News

Sunday School

The lesson this week is from Ezekiel 37:1-14. The Jewish people are in exile and God gives them a promise and hope to return home to a new life and connection with God. God promised to breathe life into the dry bones. During this Christmas season take time to breathe slowly and savor the season.


 The older children will go upstairs to the "Clean Water" mission presentation.


Christmas Pageant: Sunday 6:00 pm 

"O Little Christmas Town" by Tina English 

A Christmas Musical for Young Voices

Some of the citizens of Bethlehem have big plans for their little town, but find that God has even bigger plans for Bethlehem. Come see the children of Mt. Carmel give a special Christmas performance to get you in the real spirit of Christmas!


Marian Long
Director of Children's Ministries

770-449-4498

children@mtcarmel-umc.org

http://mtcarmel-umc.org/#/children


Staff Christmas Gift

We are so blessed to have such an exceptional staff here at Mt. Carmel. 

Throughout the year, we benefit from their talents, dedication and hard work. There is no doubt that Mt. Carmel would not be the same without them. 

As a show of appreciation, we ask you to make a monetary Christmas gift as a special "thank you" from the congregation. If you would like to contribute, please place your gift in the offering plate on Sunday or mail to the church office.

Checks may be made payable to the church, simply designate your gift as "Staff Christmas Gift." And thank you for your gift to the wonderful Mount Carmel staff! 

The Staff Parish Relations Committee


NCM Needs: Pots, Pans & Food to Put in Them!

During the month of December, we will collect new or gently used pots and pans for NCM families.

Please remember to also buy a few extra non-perishable foods for them as you do your shopping!

All donations may be left in the NCM box in the church foyer. Of course, monetary gifts are always appreciated also.  Just make your check to Mt. Carmel, and mark it for NCM.  Thank you!


Women's Book Club to Meet Dec. 6

The Women's Book Club will meet in the Hope House on Friday, December 6th at 7:00 p.m.

This month's book is The Heart Mender, by Andy Andrews.

All women are invited to join the group.  Light refreshments are also served.  Contact Chris Bolton for more information.


UMW Delivers Your Holiday Cards!


The Mt. Carmel United Methodist Women will once again be delivering your church-wide Christmas cards this year! 

Just drop your cards to your church friends into the gift wrapped box at the back of the sanctuary. The UMW members will then deliver the cards on Sunday mornings during Advent, before and after each worship service.


Clean Water – Leave A Trace Foundation Presentation: December 8th - 9:45 & 11:00 AM in Fellowship Hall 

YOU need to see this presentation! 

water is one of the most basic things needed for survival and yet there are many in the world without it. Our United Methodist Men's group has invited The Leave A Trace Foundation to come share about their work providing clean water in developing countries.

Josh Lee, sophomore at Georgia Tech, and Christina Lee, sophomore at Kennesaw Mountain High School, helped found this 501(c)3 nonprofit and have taken several trips abroad to install water purification systems in areas that desperately needed it. Christina will display and explain the operation of the equipment they install and the difference it makes in the lives of the communities. 

For more information, go to: http://leaveatrace.org 
Questions? Please contact Ed McDonald at 678-983-5588 or edmacmo@gmail.com.


Strikes for Jesus - December 7

Another STRIKES FOR JESUS bowling event is scheduled for December 7 at 11:00 a.m. at Spalding Lanes on Holcomb Bridge Rd. There will be two hours of bowling for a cost of $17.50 per person and $4.00 for shoe rental (if needed.) 

Please let Neil Odom know if you are interested in joining the group for this fun event.

Oh yes! The old guy (your current champ) says bring it on!


Down Home Holiday! Dec. 22 at 6:30 PM

You are cordially invited to a “Down Home Holiday” celebration on Sunday evening, December 22 at 6:30pm! 

Join us under the Christmas tree in the Fellowship Hall for hot chocolate, cider and refreshments. We’ll sing our favorite Christmas songs, hear a favorite Christmas story, play some reindeer games and we just might have an early visit from old St. Nick himself. 

A “Festive Wear” contest will be held with categories for all ages, so wear your favorite Christmas sweater, and the little ones can even wear their p.j.s! 

If you need a little Christmas cheer, the “Down Home Holiday” will be the perfect evening for you, your family, and children of ALL ages.


Walk Through Bethlehem: Dec. 13 - 15

Simpsonwood UMC will once again present the Annual Walk Through Bethlehem on the grounds of Simpsonwood Retreat Center this year!

You won't want to miss this Christmas tradition with your family. You'll walk through the streets of Bethlehem, meet the citizens, shop in the market, then follow the path leading to the live nativity.

Admission is free, but canned food will be appreciated for Norcross Cooperative Ministry.

Hot chocolate and cookies will complete your evening!


Outreach Opportunity

Help over 2,700 homeless children in metro Atlanta have a memorable and meaningful Christmas. 

Children’s Restoration Network 12 Days of Caring Wrap Party will be held December 19th through the 22nd. Hours are 10am till 4:30. 

Location: Roswell Town Center shopping center in Roswell at the corner of Holcomb Bridge and Alpharetta Hwy, Suite #250 (at the back of the Mall off of Commerce Blvd, near the Whirly Ball location). 

What do you do at a Wrap Party? Sort, wrap & personalize gifts for children in Metro Atlanta Homeless Shelters. There will be food, Holiday music, and Christmas cheer in the air. Many families have made this part of their Christmas tradition over the last 17 years. Bring a roll or two of wrapping paper, some scotch tape, and gift tags if you are able. 


Prayers and Thanksgivings

Please join with others in our church family in praying our concerns and thanksgivings this week.

Concerns
  • Klaren family: death of Ted's mother
  • Mercer Griffin's friend: death after elective surgery
  • Katrina Stone: death of aunt and also neighbor
  • Morgan & Jay Nichelson: custody battle for niece
  • Safety for holiday travelers
  • Carol Jamieson's friend Christina: surgery (former member)
  • Steve Pearson's friend: lung cancer
  • Ruby Easley's friend Kay: bladder cancer
  • Ruby Easley: Adam's girlfriend in mid 20's - stage 4 cancer
  • For good news
  • Lane Shutt's mother Polly & her family
  • Philippine communities recovering from typhoon
  • Downey's friend Peter: cancer surgery
  • David Jones' neighbor Melissa: surgery for seizures
  • Jenny Jensen's friends' son: Nicholas - child hospitalized with pneumonia
Thanksgivings
  • Ellie Grogin to get shorter cast on her arm
  • Kris Bell's family safely in MO
  • Kris' brother & wife visiting
  • Weathers back in church 
Every week:
  • Prayers
  • Worship this week
  • Birthdays and Anniversaries
  • Save the Date
  • Counseling Center
  • Norcross Cooperative


Sunday's Lesson
This week in worship the lessons will be:

Ezekiel 37:1-14
Key Verse from John 11


Birthdays this week:

Becca Whaley
Dylan Jones
Emily Samples
Mark Parrish
Ruby Easley

Anniversaries this week:
John & Vickie Tucker


Save the Date

ADULT CHOIR PRACTICE
DECEMBER 4 - 7:00 PM
CHOIR ROOM

KID'S NIGHT OUT
DECEMBER 6 - 6 - 9 PM
LOWER FELLOWSHIP HALL

WOMEN'S BOOK CLUB
DECEMBER 6 - 7:00 PM
HOPE HOUSE

PAVEMENT POUNDERS RUN
DECEMBER 7 - 8:00 AM
MEET AT CHURCH

STRIKES FOR JESUS
DECEMBER 7 - 11:00 AM
SPALDING LANES

CHILDREN'S PAGEANT DRESS REHEARSAL
DECEMBER 7 - 3:00 PM
SANCTUARY

CHILDREN'S PARENT MTG.
DECEMBER 7 - 3:00 PM
LOWER FELLOWSHIP HALL

YOUTH PROGRESSIVE DINNER
DECEMBER 7 - 5:45 PM
MEET AT CHURCH

8:30 SERVICE & CHOIR AT BERKELEY LAKE CHAPEL - DEC. 8 - 8:30 AM

NO 8:30 SERVICE AT MT. CARMEL
DEC. 8

"LEAVE A TRACE" PRESENTATION
DEC. 8 - 9:45 & 11:00 AM
FELLOWSHIP HALL

YOUTH AUDITIONS
DEC. 8 - 12:15 PM
FELLOWSHIP HALL

YOUTH PARENT MTG.
DEC. 8 - 5:15 PM
YOUTH HALL

CHILDREN'S CHRISTMAS PAGEANT
DECEMBER 8 - 6:00 PM
SANCTUARY

ADMINISTRATIVE BOARD
DECEMBER 8 - 7:30 PM
ROOM 112/114

BROWN BAG STUDY
DECEMBER 10 - 11:30 AM
HOPE HOUSE

DEADLINE FOR ANGEL TREE GIFTS RETURNED TO CHURCH
DECEMBER 11

BREAKFAST WITH SANTA
DECEMBER 14
9:00 & 10:00 AM
FELLOWSHIP HALL

CHOIR PRACTICE
DECEMBER 14 - 1:00 PM
SANCTUARY

PAIRS & SPARES PARTY
DECEMBER 14 - 6:30 PM
GARNER'S HOME

ADULT CHOIR PROGRAM
DECEMBER 15 - 11:00 AM
SANCTUARY

NIGHT CIRCLE PARTY
DECEMBER 16 - 6:30 PM
LORI ANDERSON'S HOME

DAY CIRCLE
DECEMBER 17 - 10:30 AM
FELLOWSHIP HALL

PRESCHOOL NATIVITY PLAY & COOKIE SWAP
DECEMBER 18 - 12:00 PM
SANCTUARY / FELL. HALL

YOUTH GIFT WRAP 
DEC. 21 - 10 AM - 8 PM
BELKS AT FORUM

DOWN HOME HOLIDAY
DECEMBER 22 - 6:30 PM
FELLOWSHIP HALL

CHRISTMAS EVE WORSHIP
DECEMBER 24 
6:30 PM & 11:30 PM
SANCTUARY

MERRY CHRISTMAS!

CHURCH OFFICE CLOSED
DEC. 24 - JAN. 2



Family Wellness
through Counseling, Education and Research


Mt. Carmel proudly supports the North Georgia Family Counseling Center.

678-242-9355
ngfccumc@gmail.com
www.ngfccumc.org


As one of the founding churches of NCM, we encourage your support assisting those in need in our area.

Help with the most urgent needs.


Share your story

Do you have an article to include in next week's bulletin or newsletter?
Email these to Suzanne Foster or call the church office.




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