News from the Pleasant Grove Pews - February Issue

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Pleasant Grove

FEBRUARY 2024

A Love-Filled Lent The 2024 Lenten season commences this month, as it often does in February. In an ironic twist, the first day of Lent, Ash Wednesday, falls on Valentine’s Day this year. Yet what could be more fitting than to begin our penitent preparations for celebrating God’s loving gift of Easter Resurrection on a day set aside for love? As John so eloquently wrote, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” Pastor Paul Klepees looks at Lent as an opportunity for growth and rediscovery of faith. On page 2, he offers a peek at his upcoming Lenten sermon series and his hope that it may serve as a guide that leads us from repentance to rejoicing in these next weeks. February serves up a hat trick this year with the Super Bowl also scheduled for Feb. 11. Pleasant Grove is celebrating this super conjunction with a canned soup drive to Fill The Cart. No matter which team prevails in the big game, our Callaway neighbors are the real winners since soup donations will stay here and benefit our own food pantry. Read all about it on page 2. If you hurry, you can get in on the Valentine goodies sale from Pleasant Grove youth. Orders close on Jan. 31, and the boxes of delectable treats will be available for pickup Feb. 10-

11. Check out the details on page 3. Our calendar is chock-full this month as we shake off those cold-weather blues from January and step up the activities. Find something new to do in the listings on page 5. More news and event details are in the announcements on page 13. NextGen Minister Kris O’Neal is also thinking about Lent this month, but he approaches it from a different perspective. Rather than fussing over what you choose to do without during Lent, he says, try thinking about what you can choose to do. Read about his thoughts on putting faith into action on page 11. Pleasant Grove’s Ladies In Faith Together (L.I.F.T.) are putting their faith into action with an uplifting support group that encourages young women in their faith walk. Turn to page 16 for a look at what L.I.F.T. is all about in our Ministry Highlight. There are many more opportunities for outreach here; find out more on page 24. And don’t miss out on our new, easy options for prayer requests, detailed on page 25. As always, dear reader, News from the Pews is your newsletter. We love your photos, so share them with us! Send photos, news and suggestions to Kathy Casteel at kcasteel@ktis.net and Betsy Bell at mammabell003@ gmail.com. We can’t wait to hear from you!

PA S T OR Paul Klepees pastor@mypgumc.org N EXT GEN MINI STER Kris O’Neal nextgen@mypgumc.org A DMIN IST RATI VE A S S ISTA NT Kayla O’Neal admin@mypgumc.org P LEA S A N T GROVE UN IT ED MET H O DI ST CHURCH 3686 State Road E Auxvasse, MO 65231 Office: 573-387-4822 Pastor’s cell: 816-752-3635 MyPGUMC.org Church services at 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. Sunday School 10:10 a.m. Youth Bible Study 6:30–8:30 p.m. For prayer requests, our Prayer Tree number is 573-386-2978, email mfansler@hotmail.com. For announcements or Information Tree: nalinville.church@gmail.com.

News from the Pleasant Grove Pews is published monthly by Pleasant Grove United Methodist Church. ©2024 All rights reserved.


THE PASTOR’S PEACE

FILL THE

CART SOUP’S ON

February is Super Bowl month (Go Chiefs!). It’s also a

“souper” month for tackling

pictured left to right front: spencer, paul, gibson back: margie, ezra, and maverick klepees

Join Our Journey of Spiritual Renewal By Pastor Paul Klepees As we step into the sacred and reflective season of Lent, I am delighted to introduce a unique sermon series, titled “Mourn Again,” that will guide us through the depth of repentance and the beauty of encountering Christ afresh. Lent, a season of solemn reflection and repentance, invites us to delve into the core of our being and reckon with the reality of our human condition. “Mourn Again” sets the stage for this introspection, drawing us into a journey of mourning over our sins. In this series, we are called not merely to observe Lent but to embrace it with open hearts, allowing the process of mourning to illuminate the transformative power of Christ in our lives. We’ll begin by heeding the biblical instruction to mourn our wrongdoings, leading us to pause and remember our initial encounter with Christ. Each subsequent week takes us through different passages, exploring themes such as the transformative impact of God’s mercy, the necessity of focusing on Christ for true self-discovery, finding joy amid the somber notes of Lent, and reflecting on the profound love

BROTHERS AND SISTERS, I DO NOT CONSIDER MYSELF YET TO HAVE TAKEN HOLD OF IT. BUT ONE THING I DO: FOR-

GODLY SORROW BRINGS

GETTING WHAT IS BEHIND AND STRAIN-

REPENTANCE THAT LEADS TO

ING TOWARD WHAT IS AHEAD, I PRESS ON

SALVATION AND LEAVES NO TOWARD THE GOAL TO WIN THE PRIZE FOR

WHICH GOD HAS CALLED ME HEAVENWARD REGRET, BUT WORLDLY IN CHRIST JESUS.

SORROW BRINGS DEATH.

2 CORINTHIANS 7:10

of God manifested through the death of Jesus. Highlighting the essence of Lent, this series emphasizes the importance of not taking anything for granted — neither our wrongdoings nor our salvation. It prompts us to open our hearts to remorse, receive forgiveness, and renew our hope in Jesus, the Christ. Lent begins this month. It is not merely a season marked by deprivation, but an opportunity for profound growth and rediscovery of our faith. May this “Mourn Again” series be a guide that leads us from repentance to rejoicing, reminding us of the transformative power of encountering Christ anew. In the weeks to come, let us come together in prayer, meditation, and community, embracing the mourning of Lent with the anticipation of the joyousness that lies within.

hunger. Pleasant Grove is right

there in the heat of the hunger battle this month, collecting

donations of canned soup for

Fill The Cart. When you’re cold and hungry, nothing hits the

spot like a hot bowl of soup on a winter’s day. All soup contributions will stay here for use in the church’s mobile food pantry site.

That’s right, Pleasant Grove

is a mobile site of the SERVE

food pantry. We distribute food boxes on the third Thursday of every month from 11 a.m. to

2 p.m. in the church gym. This

month, distribution takes place on Feb. 15. Anyone who needs food is welcome; just stop by and register that day to start

participating in the food pantry at Pleasant Grove.

Let’s Fill The Cart with soup

this month and warm somebody’s day!

I WAS HUNGRY AND YOU GAVE ME SOMETHING TO EAT, I WAS THIRSTY AND YOU GAVE ME SOMETHING TO DRINK, I WAS A STRANGER AND YOU INVITED ME IN. MATTHEW 25:35




OF

CALENDAR EVENTS BIBLE STUDY 6 P.M.

WORSHIP 9 A.M. & 11 A.M. SUNDAY SCHOOL 10:10 A.M. CONFIRMATION CLASS 10:10 A.M.

SISTERS IN FAITH (CINDY FEUTZ’S HOUSE) 7 P.M.

CHARGE CONFERENCE 1:30 P.M.

WORSHIP 9 A.M. & 11 A.M. SUNDAY SCHOOL 10:10 A.M. CONFIRMATION CLASS 10:10 A.M. VALENTINE GOODIES PICKUP 10-11 P.M. & 12-1 P.M. YOUTH BIBLE STUDY 6:30-8:30 P.M.

BIBLE STUDY 6 P.M.

ASH WEDNESDAY COME & GO ASHES 7-9 A.M., 12-1 P.M., 6-7 P.M. L.I.F.T. 6-8 P.M. QUILT GROUP 7 P.M. LIMITLESS 7-8:30 P.M.

BABY GRACE PICKUP 11-2 P.M. SERVE FOOD BOX PICKUP 11-2 P.M. COMMUNITY LUNCH 12 NOON BIBLE STUDY 6 P.M.

YOGA 8 A.M.

KFJ 6-8 P.M.

BIBLE STUDY 6 P.M.

BIBLE STUDY 9:30 A.M.

LIMITLESS 7-8:30 P.M.

CANTATA CHOIR 7 P.M.

YOUTH BIBLE STUDY 6:30-8:30 P.M.

YOUTH BIBLE STUDY 6:30-8:30 P.M.

LIMITLESS 7-8:30 P.M.

CANTATA CHOIR 7 P.M.

FFA SUNDAY CARRY-IN BREAKFAST 10 A.M.

CONFIRMATION CLASS 10:10 A.M.

BIBLE STUDY 9:30 A.M.

YOGA 8 A.M.

WORSHIP 9 A.M. & 11 A.M.

SUNDAY SCHOOL 10:10 A.M.

KFJ 6-8 P.M.

CANTATA CHOIR 6 P.M.

YOUTH BIBLE STUDY 6:30-8:30 P.M.

WORSHIP 9 A.M. & 11 A.M.

YOGA 8 A.M.

ON THE ROAD AGAIN TRIP TO FULTON 11:45 A.M. CANTATA CHOIR 7 P.M.

YOGA 8 A.M.

KFJ 6-8 P.M.

BIBLE STUDY 9:30 A.M.

LIMITLESS 7-8:30 P.M.

BOARD MEETING 7 P.M.

BIBLE STUDY 6 P.M.

VALENTINE GOODIES PICKUP 12-1:30 P.M.







NEXTGEN NOTES pictured left to right front: kourtney, kierstyn back: kayla, kris o’neal

Putting Faith into Action by NextGen Minister Kris O’Neal In a few weeks, we will enter the season of Lent, a time of prayer and fasting, as we prepare for Holy Week and Easter. This year, Lent begins on Feb. 14, which is both Ash Wednesday and Valentine’s Day. If you choose to give up chocolate or sweets for Lent, this may be difficult, especially with the Limitless fundraiser for Valentine’s Day. Many of us have already tried to give up something for the New Year. We have made resolutions, decided to be healthier in some way, whether it is our eating habits, exercise, or whatever we thought we could do better. The question now is, how is that going? It has only been a month, and if you are like me, whatever you wanted to change is already beginning to waver. Why is that? In Celebrate Recovery, we talked a lot about replacing bad habits with good ones. It is almost like our mind needs something to be habitual about. So, what good habits have you chosen? You see, Lent is not only about fasting from something, but also about putting our faith into action. It’s fine to choose to do without something, but Lent should also be about what we choose to do! During this time, I am challenging myself to be more intentional about how I choose to replace my Lenten sacrifices. Bible reading and prayer are the main options, but there can be so much more! We have all become so busy in our daily lives that it can be hard to give up almost anything without replacing it. So why not replace a sacrifice with actions that show our continued and growing faith in our Lord and Savior? FINALLY, BROTHERS, WHATEVER IS TRUE, WHATEVER IS HONORABLE, WHATEVER IS JUST, WHATEVER IS PURE, WHATEVER IS LOVELY, WHATEVER IS COM-

MENDABLE, IF THERE IS ANY EXCELLENCE, IF THERE IS ANYTHING WORTHY OF PRAISE, THINK ABOUT THESE THINGS.

PHILIPPIANS 3:10-12



ANNOUNCEMENTS

PGUMC Hosts Charge Conference

Pleasant Grove will welcome District Superintendent Mi Hyeon Lee and other area United Methodist congregations on Sunday, Feb. 4, for a cluster charge conference at the church. The conference begins at 1:30 p.m. A charge conference is an annual meeting of district superintendent, clergy, leaders and members of local congregations. The agenda will cover pastoral compensation, the budget, nominations of church leaders, ministry plans and church conference reports. Rev. Lee will also address the gathering with a message and teaching. All members of the congregation are welcome to attend.

Cantata Choir

The cantata choir is rehearsing weekly for its performance of You’ve Already Won on Palm Sunday, March 24. It’s not too late to join in! Rehearsals this month are set for 7 p.m. on Feb. 6, 13, 20 and 26 in the sanctuary.

A Sweet Sale

Orders for Valentine goodies from the Pleasant Grove youth group close on Jan. 31. Boxes will be available for pickup on Saturday, Feb. 10, 12-1:30 p.m., and Sunday, Feb. 11, 10-11 a.m. and 12-1 p.m. All proceeds go toward youth summer camp fees. See page 3 for details.

Special Delivery

Pleasant Grove’s Women’s Ministries will help with Valentine deliveries Feb. 13-14 for Allen’s Flowers in Columbia as a fundraiser for ministry projects. Volunteers may contact Cindy Feutz at 573-473-6316 or email cfeutz53@gmail.com.

On The Road Again … to Fulton

January’s On The Road Again excursion to Fulton has been rescheduled for Monday, Feb. 26. The group will gather at 11:45 a.m. for lunch at Jalisco’s Mexican Restaurant, 1211 S. Business 54. A tour of the new Callaway County Justice Center at 5 East 2nd Street will follow at 1:15 p.m. For more information, contact Jan Hankinson at 573-999-2139 or email janhankinson@gmail.com.

Ring the Dinner Bell

Pleasant Grove’s Wednesday youth gatherings of Kids For Jesus and Limitless always include dinner. If you would like to help provide food for these meals, check out the menu plans and sign up to contribute at SignUpGenius.com/go/ 10C084AADA929A5FFC16-47145291-kfjyouth#/.

Scholarship Deadlines Approach

Applications to the United Methodist Higher Education Foundation are due March 1. Details are at UMHEF.org/scholarships. Applicants for awards from the General Board of Higher Education and Ministry have until March 13. For more information, visit GBHEM.org/scholarships.

January Replay

Cindy Feutz will host Sisters In Faith at 7 p.m. on Monday, Feb. 5, in her home at 16807 Audrain Road 953 near Mexico. They will watch “The Wedding Gift” episode from the first season of The Chosen. This meeting was rescheduled from January due to weather conditions. For questions or directions, contact Cindy at 573-473-6316 or email cfeutz53@gmail.com.

Thursday Bible Study Resumes

Women’s Thursday Bible Study is back in action this month with weekly meetings beginning Feb. 1 at 6 p.m. The group will continue its study of Hearing God 30 Different Ways by Larry Kreider. Contact Nancy Linville at 573-489-9513 for more information or email nalinville.church@gmail.com. Women’s Tuesday Bible Study began Jan. 30 after a weather delay. The group is reading The Gospel on the Ground by Kristi McLelland, exploring the book of Acts. Books are available in the church office for $10. The study runs through March 19, meeting every Tuesday at 9:30 a.m. except on Feb. 13. For more information, contact Becky Stevens at 573-915-9596 or email stevensbecky81@gmail.com.


WELCOME TO PLEASANT GROVE! Brecken Hayes Montague was baptized into the family of God on Jan. 7 at Pleasant Grove. Brecken, who was born Oct. 17, 2023, belongs to proud parents Josh and Makenlea Montague.

KFJ SCORES A GRANT Rev. Laura Murphy, director of development for the Missouri United Methodist Foundation, was on hand at the Jan. 7 Pleasant Grove service to present a check to Kids For Jesus for $2,000. The MUMF ministry grant allowed Pleasant Grove to purchase four iPads used to register children and youth for KFJ and Limitless and to check them in and out of events. Future plans include the use of these security tools at other church events throughout the week. KFJ Director Stephanie Fohey and NextGen Minister Kris O’Neal explained to some of their young charges how the new iPads will help everyone enjoy their time at church in a safer environment.

pews

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FROM

MORE NEWS



With a

Lit l e He

lp fr om M

y

Friends …

The women of Ladies In Faith Together find support and encouragement in a loving fellowship of believers.

“If you want to lift yourself up, lift up someone else.” — Booker T. Washington Ladies In Faith Together (L.I.F.T.) is one of Pleasant Grove’s most uplifting ministries. Centered in faith as they “do life together,” this group of young women gathers every month to share the ups and downs of navigating family life, career paths and their faith walk. “LADIES. IN. FAITH. TOGETHER. The name says it all!” says L.I.F.T. leader Sarah Peck. “The focus of this group is to bring us together, helping one another develop knowledge of the Bible through a variety of platforms. Being a part of this group is a way for us to encourage and support one another.” L.I.F.T. meets monthly on the second Wednesday of the month at Pleasant Grove. from 6 to 8 p.m. After about 30 minutes of fellowship and snacks, the ladies spend the next hour and a half focusing on a specific study — a Bible story, a devotional book, a Christian podcast or guest speakers. “We will study whatever topic is pulling at your heart,” Sarah says.

The group also finds time for fun. Recent hijinks have run the gamut from a girls night out to an escape room adventure, volunteer projects to ugly sweater parties, holiday meals, family fun and even a Yuletide visit for the kids with Mrs. Claus. “I seriously just love this group,” says longtime member Megan Marshall. “You can show up to the meetings feeling happy, cranky, defeated, full of praise or full of worry. You can pour your heart out, or just silently listen and soak it all in. We’re all ‘Ladies In Faith Together’ but we’re also all bringing something different to the table each time.” This group is for everyone, says Sarah. “We are all a work in progress. If you’re curious, come sit with us. Learn with us. We focus on how we can best enjoy His blessings in our everyday lives.” For more information on L.I.F.T. or its activities, contact Sarah Peck at 573-808-2324 or email cspeck428@ gmail.com.

AND LET US WATCH OUT FOR ONE ANOTHER TO PROVOKE LOVE AND GOOD WORKS,

NOT NEGLECTING TO GATHER TOGETHER, AS SOME ARE IN THE HABIT OF DOING, BUT

ENCOURAGING EACH OTHER, AND ALL THE MORE AS YOU SEE THE DAY APPROACHING. HEBREWS 10:24-25



The ladies of L.I.F.T. stay connected through the group’s Facebook page, Facebook.com/ groups/1012065312667759. In this social media space, Sarah shares important dates, changes, questions related to the study, and other updates. It is a private page, but L.I.F.T. newcomers can get access through an invitation from the group.


L.I.F.T.’s next study will feature the book Good Boundaries and Goodbyes by Lysa Terkheurst, exploring the need to set healthy boundaries with friends and family and, if necessary, when to call a halt to destructive relationships.





JOIN US THIS SEASON FOR NEW SERMON SERIES

LENT

EASTER


Confirmation Classes Commence

Confirmation classes for youth in fifth grade and older will begin on Sunday, Feb. 4, during the Sunday School hour. The class will meet weekly. Find out more and sign up in the church office, or call 573-387-4822.

Lent Begins on Ash Wednesday

Pleasant Grove will begin the Lenten season on Ash Wednesday, Feb. 14. Pastor Paul Klepees will provide an online video devotion at 8 a.m. that day on our website (MyPGUMC.org), our Facebook page, the church app and our YouTube channel. Pastor Paul will be in the church sanctuary to apply ashes on a come-and-go basis from 7 to 9 a.m., noon to 1 p.m. and 6 to 7 p.m.

FFA Sunday

Pleasant Grove will host North Callaway FFA members for FFA Sunday on Feb. 18. All are welcome to enjoy the carry-in breakfast at 10 a.m. Sunday School and confirmation classes will not meet that day. FFA members will attend the 11 a.m. service.

Feed The Children

The number of students receiving weekend packs from Pleasant Grove’s Feed The Children program has grown to 34 children. The program provides food for the weekend to eligible children at Hatton-McCredie Elementary School. Monetary donations to help meet the increased demand would be appreciated. Checks made out to Feed The Children may be placed in the offering plate on Sundays, left at the church office when open, or mailed to Pleasant Grove United Methodist Church, 3686 State Road E, Auxvasse, MO 65231.

Why Methodist?

Have you ever wondered how Methodism started, why we do what we do and how we do it? Check out this free class that explores the history of Methodism and why we believe what we believe. The class meets Wednesdays, Feb. 28 through March 20, from 7 to 8:30 p.m. via Zoom. Get details or sign up at Missouri-reg.brtapp.com/PolityConfJan24. Registration closes Feb. 18.

BLESSINGS Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse … and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it. MICAH 3:10

Join us in our mission to know Jesus Christ and make Him known. Your generosity enables us to help more and more people experience a life-changing relationship with Him. We are truly grateful for your donations and hope the convenience and simplicity of our ways of giving are helpful to you. 1. Try scanning our QR code.

2. To use mobile giving, download the “Church By Ministry One” app to your mobile device. Search for Pleasant Grove by entering the zip code 65231. 3. Online giving can be found at www.mypgumc.org/donate. 4. Text “GIVE” to 573-312-2909. 5. Cash and checks can be placed in the offering plates during worship services or mailed to the church office at 3686 State Road E, Auxvasse, MO 65231. Consider becoming a recurring giver. Church statistics show that churches with high numbers of recurring givers experience the most growth. If you need assistance or have questions about our digital giving methods, please reach out to Kayla O’Neal in the church office Monday through Thursday, by phone at 573-387-4822 or email admin@mypgumc.org.


Connect in Prayer Introducing new options for submitting prayer requests.

Pleasant Grove is excited to share a convenient update to our prayer request process! Now, you can submit your prayer concerns directly through our church app or website. This streamlined feature allows you to share your joys, worries and requests with our community instantly. Your prayer matters, and this accessible tool ensures that your needs are promptly included in our communal prayers. You will have options to send the prayer request only to the pastor, the prayer team or to the entire Prayer Tree. For urgent prayer needs or if you prefer the personal touch, please feel free to call the church office or reach out to Pastor Paul Klepees on his cell. He remains committed to being available during those crucial moments. Let’s continue to support and uplift each other through the power of prayer. Your connection matters, and we look forward to joining you in lifting these concerns to the One who hears and answers. Thank you for being part of our prayerful community!

4 Ways to Request Prayer 1. Submit your prayer requests through the PG App by tapping Contact and the Prayer tab. Fill out the brief form and submit. 2. On our website, MyPGUMC.org, click on the Prayer Request graphic on the home page or you can click on Prayer Concerns under the Stay Connected menu (MyPGUMC.org/stay-connected/prayer-concerns). Fill out the brief form and submit. 3. Contact the church office at 573-387-4822 or Pastor Paul Klepees at 816-752-3635. 4. Call the Prayer Tree at 573-386-2978, or email mfansler@hotmail.com.



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