Sermon: David Bridges
“The Business of Religion”
John 2.13-22

AN INFORMATIONAL MEETING regarding Friends Disaster Service will take place next Sunday, January 28th at 3 p.m. in the Coffee Café. The Texas branch of Friends Disaster Service has blessed many individuals and families over the years, helping with recovery efforts following disasters in various parts of the U.S. as well as places like Honduras and Haiti. The group has been inactive for the past few years, but the devastation caused by Hurricane Harvey has once again highlighted the need for this important ministry. FDS has been remobilized under the leadership of Kim Page, and has been very active over the past several months in helping various uninsured families to make repairs to their homes. Obviously, there is still a huge amount of work to be done. This upcoming meeting will provide an update on the work that has been done as well as information on future plans and how we can be involved. For FDS to function effectively, we need not only volunteers who can help with the physical labor, but people who could provide support in helping with phone calls and communications, meals, transportation, housing for out of town crews, etc. Prayer support is also important. Please join us at this meeting to hear more about this ministry, which will be an important way for us to bless our community in the months ahead.

TODAY WE ARE HONORING several members of our congregation who have recently retired from many years of serving in ministry.

Ona Mae Worden has faithfully served our church in the area of contributions and finance for many years, and was treasurer of the Friends Women group for over 30 years. Ona Mae spent her Sunday afternoons each week carefully processing the weekly contributions, rarely missing a Sunday. Although many of you were not aware of her ministry since it took place mostly behind the scenes, her faithfulness and dedication to her role were a huge blessing to our congregation, and she is missed!  Please take a moment to thank her for her service when you get a chance! 

The Over-the-Hill Gang also had a ministry that you may not have been aware of, but this musical group, founded and led by Paul and Marian Gordner, brought joy to many people for over 20 years. Marian planned and prepared several original shows every year, which were presented at nursing homes, churches, schools, and other community groups. The group rehearsed their songs and skits weekly and performed multiple times every month. The music, laughter, hugs and love shared by this group brightened many lives. In additional to Paul and Marian, Kay Griffin has been a key part of the group for over 10 years. Others current and former members of our church who have been involved in OTHG at some point include Mike Bradley, Shannon Harris, Jerry, Mary & Michelle Louthan, David Myles, and Marjorie Brown. The Over the Hill Gang gave their last show in December 2017, and will be greatly missed.

LADIES, there is still time to register for our 2018 Women’s Retreat – “SERIOUSLY GOD??” Seeking Christ in the midst of every storm, at Camp Tejas in Giddings, TX – February 2nd – 4th. The cost for quadruple occupancy is $260 if your registration form and $100 deposit are received by Monday, January 22nd. After that date, the price increases to $310. The final day to register is January 29th. Registration forms are available on the kiosk or you can register and pay online at friendswoodfriends. org; click on 2018 Women’s Retreat. For any questions, please contact Beth Stanfield.

CONTRIBUTION STATEMENTS for 2017 will be going out soon.  This year we are making a transition in order to save on postage expense and staff time, and will be sending most statements by email. Printed copies will be mailed to donors for whom we do not have a current email address. If your email address is not listed correctly on the church directories which are available on the kiosk, it would be helpful if you could contact the church office with updated information. If you prefer to receive a printed copy, or if you have questions about your contribution statement once it arrives, please contact Joyce at the church office, or email joyce@friendswoodfriends.org.

FREE CONCERT: Sunday, February 18th – Our friend Neil Dover will be visiting again from his home in Mobile, Alabama. Neil is a Nashville recording artist, prolific songwriter, and an Alabama institution. His music can be heard on radio stations from Florida to Texas. He will be performing during worship and then offering a free concert in the Coffee Café. Please plan to attend and bring your friends. The concert is Sunday, February 18th from 7-9 p.m.

PARENTS OF HIGH SCHOOL STUDENTS: You are invited to an informational meeting about the spring break trip to Mexico, March 10th-16th– please join us in the high school room on Sunday, January 28th at 4 p.m. Students are welcome to attend as well. No commitment is necessary – just come to hear about the trip and ask any questions that you might have. Fund-raising ideas will also be discussed. Our groups spend time in Mexico every other year since 1993 with Friends churches in the area around Nueva Rosita and we are excited to go back and serve again! We’ll spend time worshipping together, helping to complete construction projects on churches and assisting with children’s vacation Bible school. For more information, check out www.efcmaym.org/spring-invasion-2018/. Questions? Email Josiah (josiah@friendswoodfriends.org).

MISSIONS COMMITMENT SUNDAY is coming up on February 11th! We feel that many of us might be able to relate to the “Still Rooted” theme after having experienced the events/trauma of Harvey. We have not given up hope, but have seen the ways the Lord has worked among us and has blessed many of us in so many ways. We will celebrate and learn more about the ministries that our church is involved in (both locally and around the world) with a focus on our international missionaries, and we will ask you to prayerfully consider making a commitment to be a part of these ministries through prayer, giving and/or volunteering.