Jane Seely (left) and Cathy Reich load gifts for delivery to our family.

For the third year, the staff of Healthy Ministry Resources (the national office) collected gifts for a needy family. Administrative assistant Cathy Reich and Bookstore manager Jane Seely delivered the gifts to a family in Bippus, Ind., on Wednesday, December 21.

Ted Doolittle (right), pastor, Calvary Community Church (Saginaw, Mich.)

During our December 18 services (9:30 and 11:00), we had a drama called “The Innkeeper’s Dilemma.” It was a humorous account of the innkeeper’s inner struggle as he came to understand that the “baby in the barn in Bethlehem” was none other than God in the flesh.

This realization came through encounters with a patron (Perry Reeves), a shepherd (Jeff Klinert), and a wiseman (Adam Hickmott). I played the part of the innkeeper.

During the second service, a group of preteens and teens did a blacklight presentation of Chris Tomlin’s version of “Joy to the World,” directed by Linda Doolittle, Nichole Knoellinger, and Kaylin Reeves. It was a moving presentation. The youth used white gloves under blacklights to do sign language and construct images such as large hearts, moving water, and a cross. The total attendance was 186.

Tell us something special your church did during the Christmas season–events, programs, ministries, anything. You can use this form or send an email.

John Christophel (right), pastor, Brooklyn Park UB Church (Baltimore, Md.)

The Brooklyn Park Church has been helping needy families in our community with Thanksgiving and Christmas food baskets for many years. Over the past 14 years we have also been gathering gifts of toys and clothing for children in need.

This year the need was great. We were able to provide food baskets to four families at Thanksgiving and six families this Christmas. What helped make this a success was that we joined with our local community association to establish a community food pantry in our church. We are getting great support from the community and local businesses.

Our greatest joy has always been in being able to bring Christmas cheer to the needy children. With the help of many, we were able to give 7-9 gifts of toys and clothing to 20 children from seven different families.

This year two of the families we helped were evicted right before the holidays. The seven children were scattered out to live with other family members and friends. Another family we helped only had a queen-size mattress on the floor and a small TV. A local funeral home bought the children new beds. We are collecting other furniture as well.

We praise God for how he brought many people together to make this a special Christmas. Some of the families attend our church, but a few are new contacts.

Tell us something special your church did during the Christmas season–events, programs, ministries, anything. You can use this form or send an email.

The Healthy Ministry Resources staff. L-r: Donna Hollopeter, Cathy Reich, Steve Dennie, Jane Seely, Mabel Mundy, Jeff Bleijerveld, Peggy Sell, Phil Whipple, Marci Hammel, Gary Gates, Elizabeth Holtrop, and Frank Y. (Click to enlarge)

The staff at the national office in Huntington, Ind., hope you have–and are having–a truly delightful and wonderful Christmas.


Andy Sikorra (right), pastor of Renew Communities (Berea, Ohio)

We are currently do two projects throughout the Christmas season.

First, we are working to plant a church in Haiti in partnership with Haiti Bible Mission. The overall need for funds is $17,000, but we set a goal for this Christmas of $6,000 from our people.

The other project is a local project called Renewing Christmas, where we’re working to collect 1000 new or gently used coats, 1000 hats, and 1000 pairs of gloves for our neighbors who need them most. Many local organizations are partnering with us in this project.

Recently, our Renewing Christmas project was featured in both the local paper and on Fox 8 Cleveland (the above Youtube clip). We wanted to share these things with you.

Tell us something special your church did during the Christmas season–events, programs, ministries, anything. You can use this form or send an email.

Annette Sites (right), Jerusalem Chapel, Churchville, Va.

Instead of exchanging gifts in the Middle School Sunday school class (and tempting ourselves with greed and bad attitudes), we chose to share a gift with the church family. During December, we studied God’s example of gifting and looked at our attitudes when giving and receiving gifts. To conclude our study, the students filled snack-sized baggies of “gorp” (peanuts, M&Ms, and raisin mixture) this week and stapled a message of Christmas greeting onto the bag. The students were then given the freedom to go out into the church parking lot, where they placed the goodie bags on car windshields.

Even in our giving, one problem occurred–we ran out of goodie bags before we ran out of cars! (Woops!) So, to remedy this situation we first took the goodie bags off of the pastors’ cars (since they are always showing us an example of servanthood). When that still wasn’t enough, the teens agreed to take the goodie bags off of their own family’s cars. A true sacrifice that wasn’t in the originial teaching plan.

When the class came back together to look at the story of the Three Wise Men, I took it a step further and talked about God’s gift–and sacrifice–in sending his son into the world to save us.

The students had fun, and there was not even a hint of a bad attitude. What a great Christmas gift for me and my assistant–watching the class learn and work together for God’s glory!

Tell us something special your church did during the Christmas season–events, programs, ministries, anything. You can use this form or send an email.

Jeff Bleijerveld, Director of Global Ministries

Here are some ways your Thank Offering gifts have already been used in the last few months.

Resourcing Workers

In India, we provided 30 church planters and pastors with Old Testament and New Testament Bible commentaries in the Telugu language. Most of these pastors have no Bible helps whatsoever.

Leadership Development

In India, we provided the same group of 30 church planters and pastors with a three-day training event that featured, an overview of 1 John and five characteristics of effective leaders.

In the Philippines, we provided $8000 to hold a leadership development event with 65 pastors and lay participants from our Philippine UB churches. During this time, we worked on their national documents, presented the history of the United Brethren denomination, taught the five characteristics of effective leaders, and gave a number of other practical messages related to evangelism and church planting.

Business as Mission

We provided $10,000 toward the support of a Business as Mission training team headed to Sierra Leone in January 2012. The team of eight will present a five-day workshop with two separate groups–first in Bo, then in Freetown. The participants will consist of church planters, pastors, and lay members seeking to develop alternative means by which to support ministry.

Additional Administrative Support

We hired Frank Y as an additional associate director, overseeing personnel and working to advance our Business as Mission efforts. Funding is being used to assist in his salary and travel budget.

Strengthening the Work of International Partners

Funds were used this past year to bring Behnan (last name withheld) from Turkey to the US National Conference in July 201. He offered a workshop at the conference and spoke in some of our churches. Behnan coaches Turkish church planters and workers throughout Turkey, which is less than 1% Evangelical.

Residents of Charis House with Santa (Anchor's own Tim Bauman)

Residents of Charis House with Santa.

The Christmas party was held in the dining hall at Charis House.

Anchor Community Church usually holds an all-church Christmas party at the church, complete with lots of food and a visit from Santa.

This year, Anchor held this event at Charis House, a 78-bed facility for homeless mothers and their children. Residents of Charis House joined people from Anchor on Friday, December 16, for two hours of food, music, fellowship, and pictures with Santa. Anchor brought along a lot of supplies and materials which Charis House needs.

Tim Bauman, lead guitarist/singer for the Anchor worship team, played the role of Santa, as he does each year. Throughout the evening, parents and children got their pictures taken with Santa. Meanwhile, two guitarists from the worship team sang Christmas songs for the gathering.

A lot of photos from the event have been posted on Anchor’s Facebook page.

Tell us about the special events and activities your church is doing over the Christmas season. Use this form or send an email to news@ub.org.

Jenaya Bonner, part of the Global Ministries staff in Macau, is on her way back to the States. Her grandfather passed away on Sunday afternoon, December 18, 2011. She had hoped to arrive before her grandfather’s passing. Please remember Jenaya and her grandmother, who has been quite weak as well. The funeral will take place Friday, December 23, in Huntington, Ind.

You can contact Jenaya at:

6187 N. Mayne Rd.
Roanoke, Ind. 46783
Email: jbonner@ubglobal.org

At the end of each year, pastors are required to complete forms which tell about the church’s ministry during the past year and their own ministry.

The annual report forms are being mailed December 28, 2011. Each church office will receive a packet of forms which will need to be returned to the bishop’s office.

Deadline: February 15, 2012. Reports need to be returned to the bishop’s office by that date.

These are the reports:

  • Local Church Report. This is the responsibility of the senior pastor.
  • Minister’s Report. There is a separate form for active ministers, inactive ministers, and retired ministers.
  • Women’s Ministry Survey. This brief survey will go to the Women’s Ministry Leadership Team.

These reports can also be downloaded from the UB website at ub.org/reports. They are available as:

  • PDF documents.
  • Microsoft Word documents which you can fill out on y our computer and email to the bishop’s office.
  • Online forms–fill in the blanks and hit “Submit.” The Local Church Report is the only one without an online form.

Note: If you need your report forms sent to an address or to someone’s attention other than the address the national office has on file, please contact Cathy Reich as soon as possible at 260-356-2312, ext. 311.