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Category Archives: Pender UMC

Be a Part of our Jail Ministry with JDC!

prison-feature

Join us in worship with the young men and women at the Fairfax County Juvenile Detention Center.

You may feel like your individual participation doesn’t matter, but it does! Over and over again, the staff tells us how we make a difference in the young men’s and women’s lives and the lives of the staff!

Currently, We can only bring three people, so it is by invitation only. It is for the church to keep JDC in prayer.

Pender ministers to the youth lodged in the Fairfax County Juvenile Detention Center (JDC) through a program of Sunday afternoon worship.  The JDC serves young men and women, ages 10 – 17.  These young men and women are held before trial, and in some cases, after trail in the Juvenile and Domestic Relations District Court.  The JDC also holds juveniles while awaiting transportation to the State Department of Juvenile Justice or other Placements.  Their offenses run the gambit from delinquent offenders with minor criminal records to youth charged with major crimes.  

Pender members join with these youth in worship including contemporary Christian music, a message, and prayer.  Every fourth Sunday, we meet at the Center at 1 PM and are finished by 2:30 PM.

Sign up at pender.church/signup

 
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Posted by on November 26, 2021 in Get Involved!, Missions, Music, Pender UMC

 

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Hymn History: Count Your Blessings

Count your blessings. Name them, one by one.

This simple mandate for cultivating gratitude and thanksgiving is the opening line in the catchy chorus of “Count Your Blessings,” a church music staple first published more than a century ago.

All these years later, the four verses and chorus can be summed up this way: Counting your blessings may be the antidote to feeling disheartened.

The remaining line of the chorus implores you to, after counting and naming the blessings, to “see what God has done.”

The faithful act of assessing blessings and acknowledging what God has provided in your life may give perspective when challenges and conflicts occur, as the four verses detail (see sidebar).

The author of these song lyrics acknowledges that you can feel burdened and life can seem unfair. So can counting your blessings really help when turmoil swirls around you and discouragement weighs heavy on your mind?

Such was the case for Jacob, who, in Genesis 28, is fleeing from his angry brother, Esau. When Jacob stopped for the night at a place he would later name “Bethel,” Jacob was in the midst of a bad situation. He was alone, scared and had nowhere to go. He also had no idea about how his circumstances might turn out. That night in a dream, God reassured Jacob that He was with him, that He had a plan for Jacob’s life and that He would not leave him. Jacob awoke the next morning with a change of heart and life didn’t seem so bad. “Surely the Lord is in this place,” Jacob said, “and I did not know it.” (Genesis 28:16)

Numerous stories in the Bible remind you to look beyond your circumstances to see you are not alone, that “the Lord is in this place,” providing anecdotal evidence of the importance of gratitude.

In addition to the anecdotal proof, the virtues of gratitude have been proven by science.

In a study published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, the test group was asked to daily write down five things for which they were thankful. After doing this every day for one week, the test group reported better sleep patterns and a more positive emotional outlook than the control group.

Members from Perryville United Methodist Church in Perryville, Kentucky, perform “Count Your Blessings.”

Whether the song’s author was battling tough times when he wrote the lyrics is unknown. What we do know is that Johnson Oatman Jr., the lyricist, was a Methodist Episcopal minister who had a penchant for songwriting. “Count Your Blessings,” intended as a song for youth, first appeared in “Songs for Young People,” which was published in 1897 by the Methodist Book Concern, a precursor to The United Methodist Publishing House. Over Oatman’s life, he penned more than 5,000 songs, including the classic hymn “No, Not One.”

For “Count Your Blessings,” Oatman partnered with E.O. Excell, who put Oatman’s words to music. Excell operated a Chicago-based publishing business specializing in Sunday School materials and collaborated with the Methodists for numerous projects. Fun fact about Excell is that he is the same person who wrote the arrangement of “Amazing Grace” that is most often sung throughout the world today.

But back to “Count Your Blessings.”

Once “Songs for Young People” was published, “Count Your Blessings” became a favorite, quickly gaining popularity throughout the world.

Beginning in 1899, only two years after its debut, “Count Your Blessings” appeared in at least half-dozen or more new hymnals each year, a pace that continued for at least a decade. The song was added to hymnals published by the Methodists, Presbyterians, Disciples and southern gospel publishers. Even into the mid-20th century, the song continued to be a favorite.

The song was especially popular in the United Kingdom. During the 1904-1905 Welsh Revival, the largest Christian revival in Wales during the 20th century, it is told that “Count Your Blessings” was sung at every service.

One account from a London daily newspaper says that when the famous British evangelist Gipsy Smith presided over a meeting, he announced a hymn, saying, “Let us sing ‘Count Your Blessings.’ Down in South London, the men sing it, the boys whistle to it, and the women rock their babies to sleep to the tune.”

In addition to the upbeat, simple tune that people have found easy to remember, its message has been uplifting folks for generations.

“Like a beam of sunlight,” wrote J.H. Hall, Oatman’s biographer, in “Biography of Gospel Song and Hymn Writers, “(’Count Your Blessings’) has brightened up the dark places of the earth.”

Crystal Caviness works for UMC.org at United Methodist Communications. Contact her by email or at 615-742-5138.

This story was first published November 14, 2019. 

From https://www.umc.org/en/content/count-your-blessings-an-antidote-to-despair

 

 

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Tonight – Community Thanksgiving Eve Service

THE COMMUNITY THANKSGIVING SERVICE will be held on Wednesday, November 24, at 7pm.  This is a “virtual only” worship experience that will be hosted by OX Hill Baptist Church.  Rev. White and members of our music ministry will be participating.

 

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Operation Christmas Child Filled Boxes Due

Share Christ’s love throughout the world by participating in Operation Christmas Child!

Pack a box:  Pack a shoe box or two with your family, bible study or small group.  Look for information at the OCC display near the front doors.  Filled boxes are due to Pender on Nov. 22st.


Also…

Pray: Pray that God will direct each person packing shoe boxes to put in just the right items for the child who will receive the box.  Pray also that the children will receive Christ as their Lord and Savior – the best gift of all.

Provide shipping: Donations for shipping are needed as each box costs $9 to ship. Checks should be made out to Pender UMC, with OCC in the memo.  Donations may also be made online at  www.samaritanspurse.org/occ.

Receive boxes: Help receive packed shoe boxes from the community between Nov. 15th -22nd.  Training will be provided.  Positions include greeting visitors and unloading and packing up filled shoe boxes.  PPE will be provided. Sign up here: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/5080E4BA8AC2A1-occdrop

 
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Posted by on November 22, 2021 in Get Involved!, Missions, Outreach, Pender UMC

 

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Mellow Mushroom Tomorrow

 

Please join us at Mellow Mushroom this Wednesday, October 20th between 4pm and 9pm.

We are using this fundraiser to support our basement renovation so that the preschool once again has an indoor space to play in inclement weather and the others that use this space including the Boy Scouts can enjoy a nice new clean space as well.

Just mention Pender UMC Basement Renovation fundraiser when you place your order and 20% will be donated to this important cause!

Mark your calendars for other fundraisers: (more info to come)

November 7th at Panda Express and
November 17th at Mellow Mushroom

Mellow Mushroom
14335 Newbrook Dr,
Chantilly, VA 20151

 
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Posted by on October 19, 2021 in Get Involved!, Pender UMC

 

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