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Upcoming Events
SEP

20

WED
General Church Office Hours
9:00 AM to 4:00 PM
Monday-Thursday
Ionia Food Pantry (Zion UMC)
2:00 PM to 4:30 PM
(Washington Street) Volunteers are always welcome!
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21

THU
Men's Emmaus Walk!
to be held at Lakewood UMC.
LV~UMW Annual District Meeting
9:00 AM to 3:00 PM
at New Hope UMC
General Church Office Hours
9:00 AM to 4:00 PM
Monday-Thursday
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23

SAT
SEP

24

SUN
Men's Emmaus Walk!
to be held at Lakewood UMC.
Worship Service
9am - Berlin Center UMC
11am - LeValley UMC
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25

MON
General Church Office Hours
9:00 AM to 4:00 PM
Monday-Thursday
LV Ladies 4th Day Group
6:00 PM
meet at LeValley Church
Boy Scouts Meet
7:00 PM
at LVUMC
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26

TUE
General Church Office Hours
9:00 AM to 4:00 PM
Monday-Thursday
Cub Scouts Meet
7:00 PM
at LeValley UMC
Choir Practice
7:00 PM
Adult Choir group meets at LVUMC to practice
SEP

27

WED
General Church Office Hours
9:00 AM to 4:00 PM
Monday-Thursday
Ionia Food Pantry (Zion UMC)
2:00 PM to 4:30 PM
(Washington Street) Volunteers are always welcome!
Bible Search

Dear Berlin Center and LeValley Church Family,

With all the many problems that some local churches are having drawing people to church, I thought I might remind you that in the early church the reason it grew before it was scattered was that they kept the main things the main focus.  I have listed 6 things the Church needs to do to help lay the groundwork for church growth.

  1. We worship on Sunday because Jesus rose from the dead on Sunday and appeared to Mary in the Garden on that Day.  Sunday is a day of hope and should also be a day of rest for most of us.
  2. The gospel should still be preached in the church and outside the church.  We chould still be calling people out of sin and into a right relationship with God.  A church that has forgotten forgiveness has forgotten how to be the real church.
  3. The sacraments of water baptism and communion should play an important part in our gatherings along with the mighty working of the Holy Spirit.
  4. Prayer and devotion to the Apostles teachings along with caring for the needs of each other ought to be more fuel for church growth because the love of God will be viewed in this activity of the Holy Spirit.
  5. Mix in some excellen dinners - mission offerings, mission outings - and just some fun services for outreach evangelism and the church ought to grow.
  6. Love God and each other so that others will know you are Christians.  In this way we are becoming one with God and each other.

Picking up on the tail end of Peter's great sermon on the Day of Pentecos, Acts 2:32-47 

"God raised Jesus from the dead, and we are all witnesses of this.  Now he is exalted to the place of highest honor in heaven, at God's right hand.  And the Father, as he had promised, gave him the Holy Spirit to pour out upon us, just as you see and hear today.  For David himself never ascended into heaven, yet he said, 'The Lord said to my Lord, "Sit in the place of honor at my right hand until I humble your enemies, making them a footstool under your feet." 

"So let everyone in Israel know for certain that God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, to be both Lord and Messiah Peter's words pierced their hearts, and they said to him and to the other apostles, "Brothers, what should we do?"  Peter replied, "Each of you must repent of your sins, turn to God, and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ to show that you have received forgiveness for your sins.  Then you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.  This promis is to you, and to your children, and even to the Gentiles--all who have been called by the Lord our God."  Then Peter continued preaching for a long time, strongly urging all his listeners, "Save yourselves from this crooked generation!"

Those who believed what Peter said were baptized and added to the church that day--about 3,000 in all.

The Belivers Form a Community

All the believers devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching, and to fellowship, and to sharing in meals (including the Lord's Supper), and to prayer.  A deep sense of awe came over them all, and the apostles performed many miraculous signs and wonders.  And all the believers met together in one palce and shared everything they had.  They sold their property and possessions and shared the money with those in need.  They worshiped together at the Temple each day, met in homes for the Lord's Supper, and shared their meals with great joy and generosity--all the while praising God and enjoying the goodwill of all the people.  And each day the Lord added to their fellowship those who were being saved.    Holy Bible, Nw Living Translation , copyright  1996, 2004 by Tyndale Charitable Trust, Used by permission.

Next month in Lansing our conferenc has put together an evening along with some classes to help refocus our churches to be more alive for Christ.  I hope to attend the program.  It is not just for clergy but also for lay people that want to see our local church and parish grow.  Please consider joining me for at least the Saturday portion if you can't make it both days.

Yours in Christ,

Pastor Ray and Jen

P.S.  Thanks for all your prayers, thoughts, cards, meals, music, flowers, phone calls and help during Jen's major surgery and recovery and my recent throat problem.