In 1644 an Act of Parliament banned Christmas across England. The season was regarded by the Puritans as a wasteful festival of debauchery. All Christmas traditions including services, the eating of mince pies, the decoration of homes with holly, and the drinking of special ale were all criminalized. In the Late 1500’s, Philip Stubbes, a strict protestant had expressed the Puritan view in his famed book The Anatomie of Abuses, when he noted: ‘More mischief in that time is committed than in all the year besides … What dicing and carding, what eating and drinking, what banqueting and feasting is then used … to the great dishonour of God and the impoverishing of the realm.’ Under the new law, all shops and markets were to stay open throughout December 25th and anyone caught holding or attending a special Christmas church service would suffer a penalty. In the city of London things were even stricter as soldiers were ordered to patrol the streets, seizing any food they discovered was being prepared for a Christmas celebration. The law remained in place until the Restoration in 1660!
Strangely, however, as our culture increasingly legislates against Christianity, Christmas is still loved and cherished. In a recent poll of 1,000 Americans, LifeWay Research, found that six out of 10 Americans typically attend church at Christmastime. Among those who don’t attend church at Christmastime, a majority (57%) said they would likely attend if someone they knew invited them. Scott McConnell, the Vice President of LifeWay Research concluded: “‘Regular churchgoers may assume the rest of America has already made up their mind not to attend church,’ and he continued, ‘In reality, many would welcome going to a Christmas service with someone they know.’ All this means that we have an exciting opportunity this Christmas, to open our doors to the lost community which surrounds us. With this in mind we have been working on a Christmas program which combines musical excellence, with clear gospel presentation and warmth of welcome. Who could you invite to Leidy’s this Christmas? What an incredible opportunity we all have! We give great thanks for our Choir, now under the leadership of Pastor Jeff. Under his lead, they will increasingly form a central part in our outreach to the community. I am delighted that the Choir will be working with other musicians including the Suite Brass to provide various forms of musical excellence this Christmas. The Christmas season comprises events such as:
- December 4 – Christmas Brass Concert at 7:30pm with various Christmas pieces being performed as well as the opportunity to join us in singing some favorite Christmas carols.
- December 11 – Nine Lessons & Carols by Candlelight at 6pm with a short address on the meaning of Christmas.
- December 18 – Christmas Concert at 7:30pm with performances by Suite Brass, the Choir, with guest organist Brian Bullard, harpist Justine Smith, and Tony Grau along with carol singing.
- December 24 – Carols by Candlelight on Christmas Eve at 6pm, followed by a Late Night Communion Service at 11pm.
Please join us in praying for an exciting season of outreach as we countdown to Christmas in just 56 days!
November Pulpit Schedule
- 6th – Matthew 6:19-34 – Where are you investing?
- 13th – Matthew 7:1-12 – Are you self examining?
- 20th – Matthew 7:13-23 – To whom are you listening?
- 27th – Matthew 7:24-29 – How are you building?
Give Thanks to Our God!
There is a familiar chorus we love to sing entitled “Give Thanks”, and on Thanksgiving Eve Leidy’s Church will be hosting a service of worship, where we can collectively give thanks to God for the many blessings in our lives. We all have a variety of reasons to give thanks as we reflect on the life God has given to us and all the provisions of life we enjoy, such as our families, our jobs, and our health and freedom to be sure. But the greatest thing God has blessed us with is salvation in the Lord Jesus Christ and the gift of eternal life in Him.
You are invited to come and join us at this special service on Wednesday evening November 24th that will focus on honoring and giving thanks to our God! The worship service will begin at 7:00 PM with elements of Scripture readings, prayer, testimonies, and of course corporate singing as we lift our hearts to God with thanksgiving and joyous praise.
So, on this solemn occasion whereby we as a nation celebrate Thanksgiving Day, may we as the people of God come together with gratefulness in our hearts to worship the Lord God, the Giver of every good and perfect gift.
SLMT Auction Returns in ’23
The date is April 22, 2023. That’s when the SLMT-Auction will return to Leidy’s Church. At least one SLMT trip will take place in 2023 and maybe a couple of more. We’ll see.
While a lot of details are still sketchy at best, the date is nailed down. That means we can begin to clear our calendars, fire up our brains, save up our money, and develop our bidding strategies. What would make a really good Auction item? One that will have at least two determined bidders. It may be a pie, it may be an old clock, it may be a handcrafted artifact, it may be just about anything. Remember, the value is in the eye of the beholder, not intrinsic to the item itself.
Pastor Steve has contacted Len Walter and he will be our Auctioneer again. Pastor Steve also will be the administrator of the Auction and can tell you what may or may not have been put on the auction block already.
Now, if we could only get Janet Rowe to come up from Florida and sing her famous rendition of The Auctioneer’s Song for that evening, everything would be great. Regardless, mark April 22 on your calendar now as SLMT Auction Night.
Life Turning Point Philly Is Doing the Job
At the outset of 2022, Leidy’s Church added to her mission support list Life Turning Point Philly [LTPP]. That is the ministry headed by Rita Whitaker that provides a place to live for homeless Philadelphia moms and their kids while helping them develop life skills and learn the basics of Christian discipleship. During this past summer of 2022, we sent two work teams down to LTPP to begin rehabbing a Carriage House into a two-apartment residence. That project is ongoing, as is our monthly support of LTPP.
What, though, has LTPP been doing? Recently, Rita released some statistics that should be of interest to us. Read this:
- Welcomed 19 moms and their kids to their facility;
- Served 5,178 hot meals;
- Provided 664 hours of Bible studies for women and children;
- Celebrated 12 moms securing new jobs; and
- Rejoiced that dedicated volunteers have given more than 1,142 hours of service.
This was accomplished through the dedicated team of six staff persons who provide round-the-clock support for the women and their children. They provide case management, counseling, parenting and career coaching, and help locate/provide resources the women need to succeed.
The end of October 2022 found eight women and their children who called LTPP their home. It is a place of love, safety, growth, and support. A good example is Kay. She was evicted from her home in May of 2022 and eventually came to LTPP. She says LTPP has given her the stability and structure she and her two-year-old son Spurgeon need to turn their lives around.
“LTPP is a very comfortable place to live. I love the fact that the house is very clean and the staff takes their time to make us delicious, home-cooked meals! I also truly appreciate the Life Skills and Bible classes. I’ve really learned a lot since being here.”
If you’re looking for a good ministry to which you can give an extra special monetary gift over Thanksgiving or Christmas, you might consider LTPP. Just use a Second Mile offering envelope from the pew rack and on the please use this gift for line fill in LTPP.
Judgment House Kudos
Please stand up and take a bow, all you who were part of the 2022 Judgement House production! Hear what we have to say: Thank You!Well Done!
We’re talking about all the actors and actresses. We’re talking about all the set builders. We’re talking about all the set designers. We’re talking about all the registration personnel. We’re talking about all the child-care personnel. We’re talking about all the security personnel. We’re talking about all those overseeing the concession area. We’re talking about all the food handlers. We’re talking about all the publicity personnel. We’re talking about all the ladies in the office. We’re talking about all those who served as guides. We’re talking about all the counseling personnel. And we’re talking about you if your area of service is not listed above. Thank You! Well Done!
Let’s continue to pray for the work of the Holy Spirit in the lives of those who went through this dramatic production. All was done to proclaim the truth of God’s Word and to show forth His glory. Praise God that we don’t have it all under control, but He does!
Within the Fellowship
Congratulations to Andrew & Carly Camuso at the birth of a son, Maverick Gordon, & to Michael & Sarah Nowling at the birth of a daughter, Julia Rose. May God be with them as they grow in Him.
Our sincere Christian sympathy to Dennis Gruver and family at the death of his wife Mary Ellen, and to the family and friends of John Brockwell. May God be with them at this difficult time.
Ladies of Leidy’s
Ladies of Leidy’s will be meeting in room 123 on Tuesday November 1st. We look forward to having Carol VanDyken share with us about her work with TWR. She is a long-term missionary with international Christian broadcasting and has served along with her husband and four children in four countries for over three decades. Come hear Carol as she shares how she serves in the HR, donor relations and recruiting departments of Trans World Radio. Following will be our business meeting. All ladies of the congregation are welcome to join us. If you have any questions, please contact BJ Kulp.
SLMT Puerto Rico
SLMT-’23 will be SLMT-Puerto Rico. A work-week is being planned for February 18-25 at the Haven of Hope facility in Puerto Rico. An investigatory team went to the Haven of Hope facility in May and has identified plenty of work that needs to be done. It was decided to send work teams down in non-hurricane season, that is, over the winter. Thus, Feb. 18-25.
A sign-up sheet is posted on the narthex wall. Registrants must sign up no later than December 1st. There are only 14 slots open, so don’t dilly-dally about signing up. [Could we do two work-weeks if there is sufficient interest? Maybe.]
The team will fly down and back on successive Saturdays via non-stop flights from Philadelphia and San Juan. Housing will be in the Haven of Hope facility which is located on the top of a mountain on the southeast coast of the island. Participants will be required to raise both financial support and prayer support. The financial support is $480 per person and the prayer support is six other folk praying for the participant.
The work will include several different types of labor. For instance, electrical work, dry-wall work, painting, making repairs on clay tile roof, landscape work, and cooking among other things. Some tasks will take the entire week, while other tasks may require only two or three days. [We suspect cooking will be a week-long task! 😊]
For more information, please speak with someone on the Mission Committee or Tony Kapusta or John Niederhaus.
On Sunday, November 27th, all members and friends of Leidy’s Church are invited to our annual Advent Workshop, which is sponsored by the Ladies of Leidy’s group. This event is all-inclusive, meaning that all ages are encouraged to participate in assembling different holiday crafts, while enjoying the fellowship around the craft tables.
A display table of “sample” crafts will be set up in the narthex near the main entrance of the Fellowship Hall, where people can choose a craft, and then sign-up on the sheets conveniently placed alongside each of the craft items. We do ask that parents assist their young child(ren) in selecting the craft.
Even if you think you are not crafty, do not let that stop you from joining in this fun-filled family-oriented holiday event. In addition to the craft-making there will be food provided for all in attendance. A delicious selection of pizza, beverages, and homemade desserts will be available for everyone to enjoy. So, if you do not want to do a craft, you are welcome to come for the meal and the fellowship time. Who knows, you might even get a chance to help one of the children with their craft as well.
Find Out What’s Up, Doc!
One of the longest supported missions on the Leidy’s Church books is that to Trans World Radio on behalf of Daryl and Carol Van Dyken. For over 30 years generations of Leidy’s Church folk have followed the Van Dykens as they’ve globe trotted hither and yon on this round rock of a planet.
Good news! The Van Dykens are scheduled to share their story in the Issues and Answers class on November 13th. Most recently assigned to the island is Cypress, that assignment is now over and they are entering a new phase of ministry.
Everyone is invited to come and join Daryl and Carol on the 13th of November in the Issues and Answers class and find out what might lie ahead for them. We suspect an overview of all the places they’ve been over the past 30 years may be somewhere on the agenda as well. Regardless, it will be an informative and encouraging class. Don’t miss it.
Christmas Craft & Gift Sale
Saturday, November 19th . . . from 9-2. Grab your Christmas list and head to our Annual Christmas Craft & Gift Sale. Nothing says love like a homemade gift, and our variety of vendors will be able to help you find something for even the most difficult person to shop for. And don’t forget to come hungry too, since we’ll be offering delicacies for breakfast and lunch!
Please spread the word to your friends, neighbors and co-workers and join us. Skip that empty, overpriced mall and give the folks on your list a gift hat was made with love. Spread the word ad help us make this the one “must attend” craft fair of the holiday season!
It’s Time to Vote!
I am sure you have seen the yard signs as you drive around town. Whatever you may generally think about politics these days, you have the right to vote on November 8th. How we vote will have an effect on the education of our children and grandchildren in public schools.
Leidy’s Church is a polling place for two precincts, which means that the Fellowship Hall and Kitchen areas are reserved for this election process, starting on Monday afternoon, November 7th, and ending on Tuesday evening around 9:30 pm.
If you are at the church during the voting hours on Tuesday, please park farther away, so that voters have access to the closest and most convenient parking spots. Please make it a point to out and vote, because your vote counts in this election.
Daylight Savings Time
Keeping track of time is important! Remember, that on November 6, Daylight Savings time ends and our clocks will fall back one hour. Enjoy the extra snooze time!
Christmas Parade in Souderton
Souderton Borough’s Christmas Parade will be held on Saturday, December 3rd, starting at 11:00 am. This annual event is full of excitement for the young and the young at heart. The Care Committee of Leidy’s Church will have a float at the parade, and members are encouraged to volunteer by handing out Christmas candy and gospel tracts to the crowds in attendance.
Here are ways you can help the Care Committee make this year’s Christmas float the best ever:
- We need visionary people to create the theme of the float.
- We need crafty artistic people to help with the design of the float.
- We need people to help with the float construction.
- We need a bunch of people to volunteer to ride on the float in costume.
- We need other folks to walk alongside the float to hand out special goodies to the crowds lining up and down the street route.
All of those involved can let their light shine for Jesus as they meet and greet the people of our community.
If you would like to join in the fun by volunteering in the preparations and participation of this special event, please signup via the sheet on the narthex wall or contact the church office, so someone from the Care Committee can get in touch with you.
God bless us all as we reach out in the name of the Christ of Christmas!
Peter Martindell called the meeting to order at 8:05 PM and opened in prayer. The minutes from the Consistory meeting of September 7th were reviewed. On motion of Dana Gehman, seconded by Brian Shoemaker, the Minutes were approved. Tony presented a devotion based on Romans 1:14-17. He emphasized that we are obligated to preach the Gospel as it reveals the righteousness of God. Peter welcomed the members of the Children & Youth Pastor Search Committee and thanked them for their work. The committee members were John DiLenge, Bambi Martindell, Tony Kapusta, Angela Kinney, and Shaun Permar, and Tony Jones. The committee presented Zach Darrow as the nominee they endorse for the position. John DiLenge summarized the search process, sharing that the position was advertised in various ways including internally and by advertising/posting the position at seminaries, with collegiate ministries, and with BMCE. The search committee vigorously interviewed Zach two times and all his references gave him glowing reviews. Pastor Tony had a lengthy third round interview with him, which he passed with flying colors. Each member of the committee shared why they are endorsing Zach for the position. At the completion of the Q and A, non-consistory members departed, and Consistory discussed the endorsement. Everyone was very pleased with what they heard about Zach and with the endorsement. Pastor Michael made a motion to hire Zach Darrow as the Children & Youth Pastor at Immanuel Leidy’s Church. John DiLenge seconded the motion, which passed unanimously. A discussion regarding compensation was led by Dana Gehman and his salary was agreed.
Dana presented the monthly financial report for September 2022. General Fund giving totaled $53,724 and budgeted expenses were $101,004, resulting in a Total Fund Balance of $14,546. This balance has been decreasing considerably over the past several months due to several variables. A discussion was had on this topic. On motion of Shaun Permar, seconded by Kendall Musselman, the financial report was approved. A discussion followed on the method of giving and some improved ways forward.
Some elders expressed concern that choir director Gary Filson’s attendance at church has been minimal over the past few months and it was also noted that he chose not to participate in the Christmas Concerts that are currently being planned. A discussion was had regarding this, the result being that Peter and John will call Gary to discuss the aforementioned concerns.
Consistory received an update on progress on the new Classical Christian school and the draft lease was reviewed. Spiritual Council decided that future elders and deacons will go through a credentialing process. Peter prayed for enumerated concerns. The meeting adjourned with a unison praying of the Lord’s Prayer at 11:15 PM.
O.A.S.I.S. (Older Adults Sharing In Service 55+) cordially invites you to a Christmas Brunch on Thursday, December 1st in the Fellowship Hall. A Christmas menu will be served. After the meal there will be a time of Christmas caroling. R.S.V.P. by signing up on the OASIS form in the narthex. Please invite and bring friends.
New City Catechism
Question 24: Why was it necessary for Christ, the Redeemer, to die?
Since death is the punishment for sin, Christ died willingly in our place to deliver us from the power and penalty of sin and bring us back to God. By his substitutionary atoning death, he alone redeems us from hell and gains for us forgiveness of sin, righteousness, and everlasting life.
Colossians 1:21-22: And you, who once were alienated and hostile in mind, doing evil deeds, he has now reconciled in his body of flesh by his death, in order to present you holy and blameless and above reproach before him.
Commentary – Athanasius of Alexandria
Thus, taking a body like our own, because all our bodies were liable to the corruption of death, He surrendered His body to death instead of all, and offered it to the Father. This He did out of sheer love for us, so that in His death all might die, and the law of death thereby be abolished because, having fulfilled in His body that for which it was appointed, it was thereafter voided of its power for men. This He did that He might turn again to incorruption men who had turned back to corruption, and make them alive through death by the appropriation of His body and by the grace of His resurrection. Thus He would make death to disappear from them as utterly as straw from fire.
Why was it necessary for Christ, the Redeemer, to die? This is a heavy question. I don’t know if questions get much heavier than this. Christ lived a perfect life, the life you and I should have lived. He lived a life of love, of service. He lived an amazing life of trust in his heavenly Father. So the question is a pressing one. Why should one like that die? Why was it morally necessary?
Well, he didn’t have to die for his own sake. If we were thinking just about Jesus, there would be no necessity for the cross. No, he died because he would be the Redeemer. It was his will, and also his heavenly Father’s will, to redeem us. It was his will to lay down his life, to sacrifice himself by dying on the cross in order to rescue us from the penalty that we deserved. You see, because God is good, he will punish sin. That wrong thing that you or I have done in secret—God knows about it. God’s real. He’s not just an idea. He’s not just a figment of our imagination. And this God is so thoroughly committed to what is good and right that every sin will be punished. And this is where Jesus comes in. Jesus determined to be our Redeemer. It was the will of his heavenly Father that he give himself as a sacrifice in substitution. That’s a word that’s often used—as a substitute, in the place of, instead of you and me. Jesus is our substitute if we repent of our sins, turn from them and trust in him.
So why did the Redeemer need to die? Because that’s the only way you and I would live.
Usher Captains: John DiLenge, Shaun Permar
Ushers: Bob Hager, Lucas VanDerbeek, John Rittenhouse, Brody Keeth, Mitchell VanDerbeek, Drew Weiss, Phoenix Smith, Alex Hager, Ben Smith, Tom Leidy, T. Dale Leidy, Larry Anders
Birthdays & Anniversaries
6 – Levi Kulp, Farrah McClaskey, Wanda Ritter
7 – Vicki Freed, Rachel LeFever, Justin Lockman
8 – Lenora Leidy
9 – Lorraine Kroesser, Drew Weiss
10 – Dave Kirkpatrick, Ken Merritt, Diane Miller
11 – Karen Focht, Nathan Kulp
15 – Roger Jones, Donna Moyer
18 – Samuel Murphy, Emma Smartt
19 – Samuel Shafer
20 – Beth Guntz, BJ Kulp
21 – Jennifer Keeble, Christian Rau
22 – Gary Filson, Ethel Greenawalt
23 – Janice Peterman
24 – Dorothy Kehs, Martha Wolgemuth
25 – Shirley Michalak, Bill Teate
3 – John & Mary Leidy
4 – Doug & Sue Lindner
5 – Frank & Margaret Bivighouse
6 – Bob & Jacqui Shafer
7 – Justin & Emma Coale, Steve & Irina Yagilnicky
14 – Nick & Cassy Olsyzk
15 – Don & Dianne Nase
16 – Herb & Martha Wolgemuth
17 – Ed & Cheryl Hall
18 – Rod & Beth Harbon