December 15, 2019 — James 5:8 – You must also be patient. Strengthen your hearts, for the coming of the Lord is near.  Patience is good stewardship! We know that Jesus is coming, not only in our celebration of Christmas, but also in the “kin-dom” of God both now and forever.

COMMEMORATIONS Las Posadas (LLC), Monday, December 16, 2019. This celebration, long popular in Mexico, takes its name from the “posadas,” or lodgings, sought by Mary and Joseph in Bethlehem. Their search is reenacted in a neighborhood, unsuccessfully, until finally they are welcomed in, and a party commences.

Katharina von Bora Luther, renewer of the church, died 1552, Friday, December 20, 2019. Born to an impoverished nobleman, Katie eventually took vows as a nun, but around age twenty-four she and several other nuns who were influenced by the writings of Martin Luther left the convent. Six children were born to Katie and Martin.


Sunday, December 15 is the Third Sunday of Advent. Sunday school for children K through 6th grade is at 9:45 AM every Sunday.  Holy Communion will be by intinction. This Sunday is also fellowship Sunday and everyone is invited to bring a dish to share.

December is the time for making a list of gifts we will give and for making tax deductible contributions. The St. Paul Congregation Council encourages you to consider making a gift to St. Paul!

Serving Sunday, December 15 Worship Leader: Pastor Paul Tomkiel; Music Director: Debbie Strouse; Organist: Jim Rearick; Pianist: Michelle McMullen; Assisting Minister: Lauren Muthler; Reader/Communion Assistant: Michelle McMullen; Greeters: Diane Kemmerer, Linda Muthler; Ushers: Randy and Judy Wills, Franie Pollack; Counters: Roger Williams, Jeff Muthler; Sacristan: Delores Homan; Sign Changers: Stacy Pribulka, Morgen Hummel. Fellowship hosts: Ann Reede, Franie Pollack, Linda Muthler and  Linda Rosensteel.

Come and join us for our Advent prayer/light meal evening, Thursday, December 19. Holden Evening Prayer is at 6:00 PM and a light supper at 6:45 PM. All are welcome. Meal is being provided.

St. Thomas/Blue Christmas worship will be Friday, December 20 at 7:00 PM here at St. Paul. with Holy Communion. Everyone is welcome to attend. Blue Christmas services offer special recognition of the struggles of Mary, Joseph, and Jesus that are often overlooked. By offering this service of worship we acknowledge the human conditions that we all face while providing a safe place of rest, comfort, and healing.

CHRISTMAS EVE – TUESDAY, DECEMBER 24 Prelude begins at 7:00 PM. Service with candlelight and Holy Communion at 7:30. Invite a  friend, neighbor, or a family member to join you to hear anew about the birth of Christ.

Worship Volunteers Needed for December 29 and January.   Please prayerfully consider how you might serve. We are also inviting volunteers to sign up for December 29 and for the month of January. You can sign-up at the narthex table or let Linda Rosensteel by emailing her at or call 814- 880-6059; you can also Karin Lowry at 814-699-1701 oremail stpaul68@comcast.netPlease prayerfully consider how you might serve.

Annual Congregational Meeting is set for Sunday, January 26 following worship. This is also fellowship Sunday and everyone is invited to bring a dish to share.

A congregation member has donated blankets that were made by the women in the congregation probably in the 1960s or 1970s. WELCA is selling them for a donation. There are 5 left. Please contact Linda Muthler or Sally Kolesar if you would like one. Any that are not sold will be donated to a homeless shelter.

January, February and March sign-up sheets for flowers, wine, bulletins and candles are on the narthex table. 

Pastor Paul’s Office Hours:  Wednesdays, 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM or by appointment and by phone 717-440-3453. Office Secretary’s new hours:  Tuesdays and Fridays, 11:00 AM to 3:00 PM.

Readings for December 22:                              Readings for December 24

First Reading: Isaiah 7: 10-16                                    First Reading: Isaiah 9: 2-7

Psalm: 80: 1-7, 17-19                                                 Psalm 96

Second Reading: Romans 1: 1-7                               Second Reading: Titus 2: 11-14

Gospel Reading: Matthew 1: 18-25                           Gospel Reading: Luke 2: 1-20

Readings for December 29

First Reading: Isaiah 63: 7-9

Psalm 148

Second Reading: Hebrews 2: 10-18

Gospel Reading: Matthew 2: 13-23

DVD of program, Men in Blue, shown at the PGM Presbyterian Church in October, is now on dvd.  You can borrow this dvd for viewing. Please see the sign up sheet on the narthex table.  Copies can be purchased for $15.00 by contacting Carol Ziegler at the Presbyterian Church in PGM.

Member Update: Sandee Hemman’s correct phone number is: 814-238-5515. Morgen Hummel’s new address is: 150 Ridge Road, Pennsylvania Furnace, PA  16865. Paul Anderson’s phone number is:  814-238-1543. Please update your directory.

Current needs of State College Food Bank as of November 27, 2019:  Laundry detergent, Boxed Pie Crust, French Fried Onions, Gift Cards to Wegmans to purchase fresh potatoes & ham, Jelly (flavors other than grape), Ketchup , Mayonnaise, Soup (Chunky, Progresso, etc.), Canned Chicken, Coffee, Tea, Hot Cocoa, Ranch Dressing, Canned Pears, Pancake Mix, Cooking Oil, Salt, pepper, and spices, Pancake Syrup.

Please Note: *Please place any gift cards in the Rosensteels’ mailbox. You may also donate money to the Food Bank through your offering envelopes.  *We are not in need of the following:  Baby Food, Baby Formula, or Protein Beans *We cannot accept expired or opened food items. Please check the expiration dates on  items before donating them. Our food donation guidelines provide assistance in determining what can be accepted. *We thank the St. Paul family for all your generous donations to the Food Bank. On Friday, October 18 a total of 49 pounds of food was delivered! Thank you to Linda and Ike Rosensteel for taking items to the food bank. Read about the can challenge below.

Allegheny Synod 40,000 Can Challenge December 1, 2019, through February 2, 2020.  Again this year, we our congregation to gather food items for our local food banks, agencies, and organizations which care for people in your community. All donations should be directed to your local organization.  Each week the Office Secretary will inform the Synod Office the number of donations our church gives. Thank you. A basket is in the narthex by the coat racks for your offerings.