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Newsletter November 4, 2014 New Beginnings at New HopeVOLUME 3, ISSUE 5
Christ Alone

Did John Wesley save England from a revolution? Some historians have maintained that the revival of the 18th century so altered the course of English history that it may have saved England from the kind of revolution that took place in France. England was in a spiritual quagmire. Morally, the country was becoming increasingly decadent. Drunkenness was rampant; gambling extensive, cock fighting an accepted sport and tickets were sold to public hangings. Newborns were exposed in the streets; 97% of the infant poor in the workhouses died as children. The slave trade brought material gain to many while further degrading their souls. Bishop Berkeley wrote that morality and religion in Britain had collapsed "to a degree that was never known in any Christian country." (Excerpted from www.christianity.com.)

The stage was set for the Great Revival, in which Wesley was at the forefront. During his ministry, Wesley would travel over 250,000 miles and preach thousands of sermons, often in fields and churchyards having been denied the pulpit by his Church of England. He ministered to the poor in prisons, hospitals, workhouses and mine pit heads. He never intended to break from the Church, but ended up heading the “people called Methodists”. The revival would cut across denominational lines and touch every class of society. In 1928 Archbishop Davidson wrote that "Wesley practically changed the outlook and even the character of the English nation."

But there was a time in his life when Wesley felt he lacked the faith to continue preaching. The son of a rector, educated in London Christian schools and ordained by Oxford, he did not feel the love, peace and joy that he saw in other Christians. Although devoted to the Lord, pious and committed, he did not think he had earned the assurance of being saved. He had observed his Moravian friends during storms on the Atlantic crossing as being totally at peace and ready to meet their Maker. John was not and considered his state a lack of faith. He was advised by his friends to “preach until you have the faith, and then preach because you have it.” It was after a church meeting in Aldersgate in 1738 that he reported in his journal, “I felt my heart strangely warmed. I felt I did trust in Christ, Christ alone, for salvation; and an assurance was given me that He had taken away my sins, even mine, and saved me from the law of sin and death.” Yet it would take him some time to learn how to live the life of faith, for he was not always possessed of joy and thought he had fallen from salvation. It took time for him to see that it is not Christ and good works, but Christ alone who saves, resulting in good works.

"For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith - and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God - not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God's handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do." - Ephesians 2:8-10

From the Pastor

This November we will celebrate five important events:

November 2 – The first Sunday in November is All Saints Day. United Methodists set aside this day to honor all of the everyday saints. We gather to give thanks to God for the saints of every time and place to whom we are joined in eternal fellowship; those who have been particularly important to us who now live in the nearer presence of God. This celebration is to commemorate all who have lived and died in the faith and now rest in the arms of Jesus. We recognize and celebrate all our everyday saints who from their labors rest. We remember Christians of every time and place who lived faithfully and shared their faith with others.

November 16 - Dedication of the Handicap Ramp - outside (brief service after our Worship Service).

November 23 – Christ the King Sunday. This is both the Last Sunday after Pentecost and the last Sunday in the Christian year. This is a transitional Sunday leading directly to Advent, the Christmas cycle, and the new Christian year. People begin to think about Christmas and the observance of Christ the King can help us prepare by stressing the continuity between the celebration of the kingship, or sovereignty, of Christ and the expectation of Christ’s coming again in sovereign glory which opens the Advent Season.

November 26 – Thanksgiving Eve Service (6 pm)

November 30 – The First Sunday in Advent/Hanging of the Greens Celebration. Advent means “coming;” we celebrate these days of Advent in expectation and preparation for Christ’s arrival. The Advent Season is a time for reflection and preparation, but its mood is joyful. Additionally, New Hope will prepare for Christ’s coming with the hanging of greenery, adorning our sanctuary. Hanging of the greenery is associated with everlasting life; greens such as cedar for royalty, fir and pine boughs for everlasting life, holly symbolizing Jesus’ death and ivy representing the resurrection will be used. The first candle – purple – will be lighted in the Advent Wreath, symbolizing expectation. We invite each person who receives this newsletter to joyfully worship with us on any and all occasions at this time of year when we thank God for our many blessings.

God’s Grace
Pastor Sandra
Church Calendar

•  Sunday, November 2: All Saint's Day
•  Saturday, November 8: Handicap ramp installation
Handicap Ramp

New Hope will by mid-November, have a handicap ramp installed. The cost is approximately $2,000. We ask that you prayerfully consider a donation towards the handicap ramp. There will be a plaque with the names of those who donated which will be placed in the vestibule. Please mark your check “Handicap Ramp.” If you like, You may mail your donation to Art Whetstone, Treasurer, PO Box 54, Rowesville SC 29133. THANK YOU!
•  Sunday, November 9: Newton Wannamaker will deliver sermon
•  Sunday, November 24: Thanksgiving breakfast
•  Wednesday, November 26: Thanksgiving Eve service
•  Saturday, November 29: Work Day for Advent, 10 a.m.
•  Sunday, November 30: First Sunday in Advent
•  November birthdays: Joyce Flowers (2nd), Henrietta Dukes (8th), Mark Fairey (9th), Art Whetstone (30th)