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First Baptist Owensboro

December 2017




Your complete schedule of everything

Our ministerial staff share their

How can you support the work of

Christmas at First Baptist

favorite Christmas memories

international missionaries?

Table of Contents A Word from Paul ................................................. 1 Pg. 2–3

Christmas at First Baptist .................................2–3 The holiday season is upon us! Find out what will happen at FBC throughout the holiday season.

Christmas Spirit by our Ministerial Staff ........4–5 In this article, Pastor Paul shares about the spirit of Christmas, and our ministerial staff members share some of their favorite Christmas memories.

Week of Prayer for International Missions ....6–7 For 172 years, Southern Baptist churches have sent missionaries to the unreached across the globe. Learn how you can partner in this mission in both giving and prayer. Pg. 4–5

Dedication Day by Mary Alice Riherd ................ 8 One hundred and eighty-two years led us to Dedication Sunday. In this article, Mary Alice Riherd—a member of the PERA Committee—reflects on Phase II, memories of First Baptist Owensboro, and the move forward.

Know Your Deacons.............................................. 9 Around FBC: Pictures & Memories ........... 10–11 November: A Month in Review.........................12 Calendar of Events ..............................................13 On the Back Cover: Merry Christmas and Happy New

Pg. 10–11

Year from the staff at First Baptist Owensboro!








230 JR Miller Boulevard • Owensboro, KY 42303 • 270.683.3505 •

DEDICATION DAY WOW, what a great day of worship, fellowship, and dedication to our Lord Jesus for all He has done. The Bible is replete with stories of celebration to our Heavenly Father, and we want to give honor and worship to the only one worthy. Thanks to everyone who was present and especially to all our volunteers who made it happen.

MAKING, MATURING, & MULTIPLYING DISCIPLES Let’s continue our quest to become disciple makers to fulfill the great commission. There are two questions that need to be answered by every believer. Question number one, “Who are you helping (discipling) in their growth as a follower of Jesus Christ?” Question number two, “Who is helping you to grow in your Christian walk?” The

Remember the words of the apostle

Our Christmas Eve Candlelight Ser-

Paul to his son in the faith, Timothy, in

vices will include the Lord’s Supper and

2 Timothy 2:2. He said, “And the things

will be held at 4 and 5:30 PM. Decem-

you have heard me say in the presence

ber 24th falls on a Sunday, and that

of many witnesses entrust to reliable

morning we will have only one worship

people who will also be qualified to

service at 10 AM (no Sunday school).

teach others.”

CHRISTMAS—A GREAT TIME FOR OUTREACH The Christmas season is a wonderful time to reach out to people who don’t have a church home, who are far from God, who normally are not open to an invitation to a church service. I would encourage you to look at the calendar to find an event that you could use to reach someone who needs to hear about Jesus. He is not only the reason for the season, but He is the answer to every need we have. Here are two special services that are happening in December.

truth is we all need to be helping others

Keyboards at Christmas will be on

(discipling), and we all need to have

December 17th with two opportunities

someone help us!

to attend at 3 and 6 PM here in our sanctuary.

I close with Paul’s words to the church at Colossae. Colossians 3:16–17 says, “Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in one body; and be thankful. Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God. Whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through Him to God the Father.” Merry Christmas from my family to yours! We Love You!

Christmas at First Baptist CLC WINTER SCHEDULE BEGINS Saturday, December 2 During the colder months of December, January, and February, the CLC will have extended Saturday hours—opening at 9 AM and closing at 3 PM.


Christmas Fellowship & Missions Tea

Gathering Area of First Baptist Owensboro on Saturday, December 2nd (yes, Saturday!). This will be the first event held there. During this time, we will remember our International missionar-

Saturday, December 2 12 PM • Gathering Area

ies and gather our offerings to promote

It’s that time again! This year, our

us anytime between 11 AM–1 PM. Call

annual Christmas Fellowship & Mis-

the church office 270-683-3505 if you

sions Tea will be held at the new

have any questions.

the work of spreading the Gospel. We are very excited and hope you can join



December 3–10 Join us in praying for international missionaries during the 2017 Week of Prayer for International Missions—December 3–10. Find more information on page six.

Sunday, December 17 3 PM & 6 PM • Sanctuary Join us for a Christmas celebration featuring as many as eight pianists at once playing on four grand pianos, authentic pipe organ, and more! This musical event will feature nine pianists from First Baptist Owensboro, plus musician and composer Anna Laura Page. You will hear classics such as The First Noel,

Sunday, December 3 7 PM • Sanctuary The Sanctuary Choir and Orchestra of First Baptist Owensboro will present a Lessons and Carols service on Sunday, December 3 at 7 PM.

Pastoral Symphony from The Messiah, and even A Charlie Brown Christmas!

NO WEDNESDAY ACTIVITIES December 20 & 27 There will be no activities on Wednes-

Experience the joy and mystery of Jesus’

days, December 20th or 27th. This

birth in the retelling of the story inter-

includes noon prayer lunch and all eve-

woven with carols. There will be both

ning studies, activities, and rehearsals.

choir anthems as well as sing-along

The Christian Life Center will remain

carols. There is no admission, but an

open until 8 PM on both Wednesdays.

offering will be taken. Everyone is wel-


come to come to experience the spirit of Christmas.

QUARTERLY BUSINESS MEETING Wednesday, December 13 6 PM • Sanctuary This will be the final business meeting

Sunday, December 24 10 AM • Sanctuary On Christmas Eve morning, we will have one combined worship service at 10 AM. There will be no Sunday School or Children's Church on this day.

Sunday, December 24 4 & 5:30 PM • Sanctuary Join us for this special tradition! We will hear the Christmas story, sing carols, and observe the Lord’s Supper as we celebrate Jesus Christ. Identical services will be held at 4 and 5:30 PM. Children are encouraged to participate with their family as childcare will not be provided.

OFFICE & CLC CLOSED December 25–26 The church office and Christian Life Center will close for Christmas on Monday and Tuesday, December 25–26.

NEW YEAR'S EVE MORNING SUNDAY SCHOOL & WORSHIP Sunday, December 31 9 AM • Sunday School 10 AM • Combined Worship On New Year's Eve morning, we will have Sunday School at 9 AM and one combined morning worship service at 10 AM. There will be no Children's Church or evening worship on this day.

OFFICE & CLC CLOSED Monday, January 1

of 2017 and will meet in the Sanctuary

The church office and Christian Life

at 6 PM.

Center will close on New Year's Day. December 2017 | 3

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here is something about the Christmas season that changes people. Have you

ever noticed how much more loving, charitable, and compassionate people appear during the Christmas season? My experience is that whether people are believers or not, Christmas seems to soften even those who are far from God. People seem more aware of the needs of others than any other time of year. We call it “the Christmas spirit.” For believers, we understand the Christmas spirit is because Jesus was born to die that we might live. We are compelled to show more compassion

We asked our staff to share their favorite Christmas memories. What Christmas memories do you cherish? Derry Billingsley, Worship When I was a teenager, my family experienced a Christmas in which finances were extremely limited. My parents beautifully led my siblings and me in to a deeper understanding of how to celebrate Christ’s birth. It wasn’t about the material gifts I had hoped to get, but about the Gift I had already received. The lesson has remained to this day.

Wesley Dunn, Discipleship My favorite memory of Christmas is being with family year after year. My family was blessed to be at our home every Christmas morning. As I look back at those days, they were special. Now, with a family of my own, Julie and I embrace holiday moments—not only to continue making memories for ourselves, but to create lasting memories for our children as well.

to others and view others through the

Ginger Mayfield, Preschool

lens of Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross for

When my daughter, Sydnee, was two, she would take the baby Jesus from the

us. In John’s gospel we read, “Greater

Nativity Scene everyday. I would find it hidden all over the house along with

love has no one than this: to lay down

one of her pacifiers and a sippy cup. All of the pieces to this set were broken

one’s life for one’s friends" (John 15:13).

one year during a move except for the baby Jesus, which I will always cherish.

That is precisely what Jesus Christ was born to do. I want to encourage you this Christmas to look at others through the lens of the one who gave His life for you, Jesus Christ. People are more open and willing to hear the message of Christmas during this season. Why not take the opportunity to invite someone to worship, Bible study, or some special service this year? People need to understand what the spirit of Christmas really is all about. by Paul Strahan, Lead Pastor

Dave Roberts, Recreation My favorite memories go back to my twin brother and me coming downstairs very early (5 or 6 AM) to see what Santa had left. We would be so excited while everyone else slept in. My favorite tradition is the annual viewing of a "Charlie Brown Christmas", which I believe is one of the most powerful messages about Christmas. Linus’ recitation of Luke 2:8–14 brings tears to my eyes even now.

Paul Strahan, Lead Pastor As I grew up with two brothers and two sisters, Christmas was (and still is) about being together as a family. My favorite memories are being with our family, which usually included sitting around the table for a meal. My mom was a great cook, and at Christmas she made some killer Martha Washington candy. I miss those days but am grateful for the great memories.

"And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men." — Luke 2:8–14

For 172 years, Southern Baptist churches have sent missionaries to the unreached across the globe. This Christmas season, we continue that legacy by participating in the Lottie Moon Christmas Offering (LMCO). Together we financially support more than 4,000 Southern Baptist missionaries who share the gospel all over the world. Our collective giving enables missionaries to be sent to make disciples and multiply churches among unreached peoples and places for the glory of God. You can contribute to the LMCO by giving to our First On Mission (FOM) offering throughout the year. The LMCO receives 75% of our total FOM offering each year. LMCO receives the most because it is the largest area of ministry with the most people in darkness—the world!

Week of Prayer: December 3–10 Not only are our gifts important, but our prayers are vital. Join us in praying for international missionaries during the 2017 Week of Prayer for International Missions—December 3–10. Find a prayer guide online at or at any sanctuary 6 | Connect Magazine

entrance on Sunday, December 3rd.

Matthew 28:16-20

Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them. And when they saw Him they worshiped Him, but some doubted. And Jesus came and said to them, 'All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to Me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.'

A Reflection on

by Mary Alice Riherd


ne hundred and eighty-two

name would be great, he would be a

picture faces, remember events, hear

years led us to this point in

blessing, and that all people on earth

revivals, conduct workshops, organize

time for Dedication Sunday,

would be blessed through him.

picnics, and provide craft projects. I

November 5, 2017. Wow! I have to think about that time frame and our church’s history for a while. The project was a huge task, tackled one day at a time, over a course of approximately three years. So much of the work accomplished is unseen—hidden behind those walls and ceilings, floors and doors. But isn’t that so much like our walk in the faith? We cannot see, but we know. God called Abram at 75 years of age to “leave and go” and for the next 100 years God promised Abraham his

8 | Connect Magazine

We are a congregation of believers on earth at this point in time who have been blessed by that very covenant. My imagination takes a journey through

have been moved by testimonies and shaped by sermons. Each and every one of us has a personal history with our church.

our church’s history of different ad-

Our building isn’t perfect; so many

dresses, locations, and buildings. I

compromises are made in construction

envision thousands of people hearing

and finishes. I pray it is acceptable to

God’s Word on Sundays and Wednes-

God in His good, pleasing, and perfect

days through men of God called to His

will. May we move from this day for-

service. I see generations of births, bap-

ward, equipped with our faith in God

tisms, marriages, and deaths. During

to accomplish what He would have us

my own last 40 years of being a mem-

do in the years to come. To Him be the

ber at First Baptist Owensboro, I can


As Deacons, Vic Harrison and T. Tommy Littlepage are tasked with the mission of caring for the needs of our church. Pray for them daily as they seek to serve our congregation and pursue unity in the church.

Vic Harrison Member: 17 years

What passage of Scripture has recently impacted you and why? Psalm 91. The passage gives assurance of God's care and protection—not that problems will not come along, but that He will keep me under the protection of His "wings." Especially helpful to me


that it affects the decisions we make

of us find ourselves in that position. I

each day, that it changes us, and that the

say this verse to myself a few times a

Spirit empowers us to speak truth from

day, at least, every day lately. It allows

that Word to the world that's within our

me to clear my mind for a moment to


prioritize. First, seek Him and his righ-

T. Tommy Littlepage

teousness (not my own self-created or

Member: 6 years

What passage of Scripture has recently impacted you and why?

lately has been the refuge, the shield,

Recently, my mind has been on Mat-

and the rampart God has been (v. 4),

thew 6:33. “But seek ye first the king-

and that this Psalm addresses chal-

dom of God, and his righteousness;

lenges or trials that can come at any

and all these things shall be added unto

time. Verse 5 addresses the "terror of

you.” I find myself pulled in different

night," arrows during the day, pestilence

directions constantly, every minute

stalking at night, and plagues that de-

probably. There are getting kids dressed

stroy at midday. There may not literally

in the mornings, lunch boxes, driving to

be terrors, arrows, pestilences and

and from school, sports, birthday par-

plagues, but it can surely seem that way.

ties, and other events; there are meeting

What are your prayers for the congregation of FBC? My prayer for FBC is that we all spend more time in God's Word, so much so


the demands and deadlines of running your own business; there are the dayto-day projects that need our attention at home; and there is trying to be a

that earthly standard of righteousness). Then, everything else will fall into place through Him. Sounds good. Sounds great actually. It is comforting. It is focusing. Praise Him!

What are your prayers for the congregation of FBC? I pray that we all (myself included) will break out of our comfort zones and be more dynamic and enthusiastic witnesses for Christ. I pray for the future of this congregation that we may continue to grow in faithful numbers in order to insure the existence of this body for another 180 years. Finally, I pray that those members on our church roll who are not involved with this body will find their way back here or have found their way to other church homes.

good husband at the same time. Many December 2017 | 9

Thanksgiving Photos by Susan Elizabeth Wilson

November was an exciting month at First Baptist Owensboro! Here are a few snapshots of all the goings-on.

Opposite Page: On Sunday, November 19th, our kitchen staff prepared a delicious Thanksgiving meal, and our congregation fellowshipped and enjoyed it thoroughly! Pictured at bottom: Pastor Paul Strahan, Judi West, Sherry Kasinger, and Mary Alice Riherd. This Page (clockwise from top): Bob Farmer, JJ Poole, and Derry Billingsley peek over Susan Dant's newly situated cubicle. In November, JJ Poole started an interim position in our Student Ministry; on Tuesday, November 7th, Joyce Edwards graciously opened her home to host the ladies of our staff for lunch; the Kentucky Baptist All-State Junior High Choir led us in worship on Sunday, November 12th; the view of the new gathering area between services on that same Sunday, November 12th; on a rainy Wednesday, November 15th, Derry Billingsley sang the prayer time along with "I Need Thee Every Hour" at Noon Prayer Lunch. December 2017 | 11

Photo by Susan Elizabeth Wilson

NOVEMBER A Month in Review

"If one member suffers, all suffer together; if one member is honored, all rejoice together." —1 Corinthians 12:26


Welcome to th e Family!


Sympathy...During their time of loss, we offer Christian love and sympathy to Bret (Jane) Julian & family (mother, Dixie Anne Heuermann), Tom (Donna) Pillow (father, Thomas Pillow), Nathan (Jill) Howard (grandmother, Jane Howard), Jeff (Vicky) Hammond (mother, Corlean Hammond), the

Joined by Letter on October 22nd Carli Eblen

Profession of Faith on October 22nd Kate McCain

Profession of Faith on November 5th Scott Burgan

Joined by Letter on November 12th Rev. Gary & Gayle Shockley

family of Janet Turner, the family of Marrianne Stateler, Eddie (Greta) Shelton (sister-in-law, Patsy Shelton), Rick (Gayla) Hoffman (sister-in-law, Marge Hoffman), the family of Nina Powers, the family of Nancy Gordon, and Evelyn Arnett (sister, Thelma Weightman).

Coming in th e month of


2SATURDAY 11:00 AM Ladies' 3SUNDAY

Christmas Fellowship & Missions Tea

IMB Week of Prayer Begins

8:30 AM 9:45 AM 11:00 AM

Classic Worship Sunday School Elevate Worship

7:00 PM Lessons & Carols


Seekers Prayer Group

12:00 PM 4:45 PM 6:00 PM

Prayer Lunch Evening Supper Studies for All Ages Classic Worship Sunday School Elevate Worship Evening Worship Deacon Meeting

13WEDNESDAY 12:00 PM 4:45 PM 6:00 PM

Prayer Lunch Evening Supper Studies for All Ages

6:00 PM Year-End Business Meeting 6:00 PM Youth Christmas Party (CLC)


Classic Worship Sunday School Elevate Worship

3:00 PM Keyboards at Christmas 6:00 PM Keyboards at Christmas


No Wednesday Activities Christmas Eve

10:00 AM

Combined Worship

4:00 PM Candlelight Service 5:30 PM Candlelight Service


Christmas Day


8:30 AM 9:45 AM 11:00 AM 6:00 PM 7:00 PM

8:30 AM 9:45 AM 11:00 AM

No Children's Church or Sunday School




Office & CLC Closed


Office & CLC Closed No Wednesday Activities No Children's Church or Evening Worship

9:00 AM 10:00 AM

Sunday School Combined Worship

Monday, Tuesday, Thursday




6:30 AM - 8 PM 6:30 AM - 9 PM


6:30 AM - 1 PM


9 AM - 3 PM

8 AM - 4:30 PM 8 AM - 1 PM

Our service is broadcast on 90.3 WKWC (Sundays at 10 AM) and Channel 72 (Tuesdays at 7 PM and Wednesdays at 9 AM). Services are delayed by a week. Note: Sensitive information cannot be broadcast. An older service will be aired in its place.

MINISTER ON CALL If you have an after-hours emergency, please call 270.683.3505 and press 9 to reach the minister on call.

December 2017 | 13

Merry Christmas & Happy New year! from the Staff of First Baptist Owensboro

230 JR Miller Blvd • Owensboro, KY 42303 • 270.683.3505 •

December 2017 | First Baptist Owensboro Connect Magazine  

Christmas time is here! This issue is filled with warm memories and holiday cheer. Take a look inside!

December 2017 | First Baptist Owensboro Connect Magazine  

Christmas time is here! This issue is filled with warm memories and holiday cheer. Take a look inside!