North Canton & Youngstown, OH; Pittsburgh, PA; Wheeling, WV Congregations
United Church of God, an International Association
- Sabbath, June 6, 2020:
12:00 Noon (EDT) – local webcast sermon given by Randy Stiver.
(may be subject to change)
Friday, June 12
Friday night Bible study webcast – 7:30 PM (EDT) – Randy Stiver
Sabbath, June 13
Local Sabbath webcast – 12:00 Noon (EDT) https://www.ucg.org/congregations/north-canton-oh/webcast
Pastor’s contact information: PO Box 1474, Massillon, OH 44648. Home phone: 330-809-0566, cell phone: 740-739-7248. Email addresses: firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com (both come to the same location). For emails regarding scheduling (church events, visits or counseling), please copy my wife Linda firstname.lastname@example.org. Announcements should be sent to my email and copied to our daughter Amanda at email@example.com as she helps process them each week.
International tensions running high... disease epidemic choking economies around the world... inter-racial tensions dominating the U.S. news... trade relations at angst-ridden odds... ecological disaster in Russia leaking out... moral values sliding steeply... and a dramatic U.S. presidential election campaign soon to begin!
I hope your week was quiet, despite all that. Yet with so many crises happening, it sounds almost like certain of The Plain Truth magazine headlines of the late 1960s or early '70s.
It's not just that history repeats itself, but human nature repeats itself! God's Word defines human nature like this: "The carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be" (Romans 8:7 Romans 8:7Because the carnal mind is enmity against God: for it is not subject to the law of God, neither indeed can be.
American King James Version×, KJV).
That alone accounts for most of the trouble and angst in today's world. The natural / carnal mind without the spiritual perspective of God's Holy Spirit constantly focuses on self--is selfish! Further, one can have God's spirit, but not use it to think through these considerable dynamics.
Next, brethren, bear in mind that Satan the devil is driving the angry, emotional eruptions in society -- and he'll strive to drive every kind of deceptive, rebellious wedge between peoples and especially between people and God.
Jesus Christ defined Satan's character like this... "You are of your father the devil, and the desires of your father you want to do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own resources, for he is a liar and the father of it" (John 8:44 John 8:44You are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father you will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and stayed not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.
American King James Version×).
Pray for America and its citizens and leadership! Don't allow yourself to be overwhelmed by the rhetoric from the varying sides of any of these issues.
Go to God's Word. Read what God said, what Christ taught and did and learn from that. Critically analyze the confusing cacophony of voices of anger in the world around us. Weigh those words and values in the scale with God's true values.
God's Word carries infinite weight. This sad, old earth lost its way long ago--and has not found it yet--nor ever will until Christ returns and installs the government of God to bring true peace and justice to mankind for over a thousand years--and then for eternity in His great Kingdom!
Randy Stiver, Pastor
1. LOCAL PRAYER REQUESTS and UPDATES
(If you notice that your prayer request needs updating, please drop us an email or a call with an update. Thank you!)
- Pray for peace in our nation as lawful public demonstrations over the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis have, sadly, become fodder for violent looters and inciters in many cities. Violence begets violence and tensions are extremely high as these issues become part of the political ferment in this election year. If our nation destabilizes we cannot effectively do our work to educate those God may call about His plan of salvation for all humanity and the coming Kingdom of God. Please ask for God’s protection for His people and pray fervently that, according to God’s will, we can, “If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men” (Romans 12:18 Romans 12:18If it be possible, as much as lies in you, live peaceably with all men.
American King James Version×, NKJV).
- Also keep the Coronavirus situation in your prayers, asking that God protect His people, and all people. Please also pray that our opportunity to assemble together is restored as soon as is safely possible. Also pray that the financial impact globally, nationally, and individually is mitigated through God’s mercy.
- James Guy Sr. (Youngstown) – James (dad of Jimmy Guy) had back surgery Monday and came home Wednesday. He is extremely weak and is a little delirious. His breathing is a little labored. We are taking him to the emergency room now. Prayers for healing and physical strength. And for Gods spirit to comfort my mom and for discernment and wisdom concerning dads care. Thank you!
- Lynn Coleman (Cambridge) –Lynn (wife of Paul) was finally able to come home after a prolonged, lonely stay at the Wheeling hospital convalescent center (no visitors due to Covid-19). Her doctor has diagnosed her with the Stevens-Johnson Syndrome--a type of severe reaction to medications. It causes a burning sensation in the hands and is quite uncomfortable. Please add this to your prayers for her overall healing.
- Mariah Sattler (North Canton) – Dealing with painful gastritis. Prayers for relief and healing requested.
- Linda Ritter (North Canton) – Linda would appreciate prayers for kidney and liver, and improvement in her hearing and hearing aid performance.
- Jenny Luchitz (North Canton) – Feeling poorly with the dramatic weather fronts that come through at this time of year. Please pray for encouragement for Jenny and lessening of aches and pains.
- Janice Walters (North Canton) – Recovering from a fall down the stairs. Prayers for a quick recovery are greatly appreciated.
- John Williamson – John, son-in-law of Louis and Carol Petit, continues his fight with cancer. Please pray for his healing and strength for his wife Lisa as she copes with the stress.
- Steve Richmond (Cambridge) – Steve continues to battle cancer, please keep him in your prayers.
2. Update on RE-CONVENING IN-PERSON SERVICES
After further consideration and input, we will hold off opening in-person services in the North Canton area until Sabbath, July 11. Pittsburgh may be opening sooner; Keith Wilson will have those details soon. Youngstown and Wheeling are still waiting on hall availability, but may delay for a while as well. Updates will come out as they are available.
It is hoped that holding back for another month may allow us to see if some of the Ohio state guidelines will be lifted, or at least lessened. As we learn more there will be an updated PDF on “Coronavirus Protocols for Holding Sabbath Services.”
As we get closer to opening, carefully consider your personal health situation and the challenges posed by social distancing as you decide whether to attend. Meanwhile, we will continue to locally webcast Sabbath services and the regular Bible Studies.
3. CHANGING FEAST SITES PROCEDURE
If your Feast site has been cancelled, please be sure to update your registration online. The following procedures will help you do so:
- Log into the UCG.org account which was used to register your household.
- Access your household's Feast registration in one of two ways:
- Locate your confirmation email (subject line "UCG Festival Registration Complete" or "UCG Festival Registration Submitted") for 2020 and click the link in the email. -OR-
- Click on your name in the upper right corner. In the box that appears, click the "My Registrations" link. Locate your Feast registration for 2020 in the list on the right and click the "View" link.
- Toward the middle of the page, click the "CHANGE SITES" link.
- In the "Choose Site" dropdown menu, select your new site. The selected site will appear under the "New Site" header on the right and will indicate how many spaces are available at that site.
- Scroll down under the site photos and click the "Change Sites" button. You'll be returned to your registration page, with your new site displaying at the top of the page.
-- Charles Melear
4. LOCAL FESTIVAL COORDINATORS
Festival Planning Brochure: feast.ucg.org
Please be sure to register for the Feast and make reservations as your circumstances allow.
If you need local assistance, please contact your festival coordinator:
North Canton: Freeman Kuhns and Mark Miller Pittsburgh:Nathan Courtney
Youngstown: James Guy Wheeling:Jim Kocher
SPECIAL RESOURCES FOR DURING THE COVID-19 SITUATION
COVID-19 Links and Resources:
West Virginia: https://dhhr.wv.gov/COVID-19/Pages/default.aspx
VIEWING SABBATH WEBCASTS – How-to
The following link can help you better connect to the webcasts from the UCG.org website. Please follow the link and read the extensive directions for more information and troubleshooting help:
PHONE HOOK-UP to Home Office Webcasts
If you need a phone hook-up to the webcast services from Cincinnati (2:30PM on Sabbaths) here are the directions:
Please call no earlier than 5 minutes before the service will begin. If the Home Office has not activated the meeting, the caller will be put on hold, and then asked to call again later.
Normal Calling Directions for Home Office Webcast:
For those who can pay for long distance calls or have an unlimited phone calling plan:
No access code needed.
If you know someone who could use the phone hook-up number, but does not get the announcements by email, please call them and pass along the information! Thank you!