Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas!

 

Happy Christmas Sunday!  Sunday’s worship will be in partnership with the Campus ministries of the Florida Annual Conference.  There are 12 campus ministries at college campuses throughout the state of Florida, and they help to extend the ministry of the local church to the college campus so that kids who leave youth groups and head to college can still find a place to grow their faith with a Wesleyan foundation.

Each of these campus ministries are called “Wesley Foundations,” and you can find them all over the country at different colleges and universities.  The ministry of the Wesley foundation is so important to countless college students who are trying to find their faith in an adult world as they leave home to head to college.  

It’s also personal to me, you see, way back in the previous millennium, I was a college freshmen at the University of Alabama.  By going to school there, I had moved closer to my dad’s family, but I was over 500 miles away from all my high school friends and church family.  Since I had grown up in the Episcopal Church, I tried their campus ministry but just didn’t feel like I fit in.  My roommate was randomly assigned to me at the beginning of the school year, and as we got to know each other and he found out I wasn’t having much luck finding a church, he invited me to the Wesley Foundation, where he went.  They had a dinner on Thursday night that was free for anyone who came for the first time.  Honestly, I was really tired of eating out of the dining hall and my dorm room microwave.  So I fell for the hook.

He was United Methodist, and while I had no idea what that was, I decided I would give it a try.  That was 21 years ago this Fall.  The Wesley Foundation at the University of Alabama is also where Heather and I met, and where I found a place to really search out this call to ministry I had been hearing.  So for those of you in high school now, especially if you’re close to graduating and heading off to college, know that there is an extension of St. Paul’s there for you.  It’s a place to continue to explore your faith in a more serious way as you grow into a young adult.  I hope you enjoy this special worship service today led by our Campus ministries of the Florida Conference.

Sunday’s Online Service—If you log in to your Google/YouTube account about 10-15 minutes early, you will be able to easily access the chat and fellowship through the YouTube premier page both before and during the service. Find the premier page on our YouTube channel at: 12/27/20 Online Service.  The premiere page will be active from the moment the video is uploaded, so you can practice any time this weekend! 

Sunday’s In-Person Service – We’ve launched our in-person indoor worship in the Sanctuary, starting at 9:00am. We are asking everyone to register at this link: cometoworship.org so that we don’t go over our maximum capacity. We ask everyone to wear a mask and maintain social distancing. Temperatures will be taken before entering the building, and communion elements will be provided as you enter the sanctuary to worship on the first Sunday of the month. This Sunday will be our last in-person worship for the year. We will continue to meet on YouTube on 12/27 and 1/3, but won’t be offering in-person worship until 1/10/21.

Our Children’s ministries include the nursery, SPKidz, and iClub.  They are currently meeting at 9am in the Fellowship Hall. Please join them for an interactive socially distanced fun time as they learn their lessons and play games together. iClub won’t be meeting this week (12/20), but join both iClub and SPKidz for a fun PJ party on 12/27/20 at 9:00am.

SPYouth and Praise New Generation are invited to come hang out on 1/03 from 3:00pm-4:00pm for a Christmas Concert Livestream on the big screen! Praise New Generation won’t have another practice session until 1/10/20. Our regular Youth schedule is: Praise NG will be meeting from 3:00pm-4:00pm every Sunday and SPYouth will be meeting from 4:00pm-5:00pm every Sunday.

We so appreciate you keeping connected with us as we navigate these trying times for everyone. Please contact the church office by email at info@spocala.org or by phone at 352-694-2161 if you have any questions or need any help.  While in-person office hours are limited, someone will receive your message and get back to you as soon as possible.