YELLOWSTONE – ARGYLE/APPLE GROVE
Office Phone: 608-543-3088
Web Site: www.YellowstoneArgyleAppleGrove.com
Dear friends in Christ,
The story is told of a man who happened to be downtown when a parade went through. The people in the parade invited him to be a part of the procession; in his joy and exuberance, he joined in. Near the end of the parade route, a neighbor saw him and called out, “What are you celebrating?” The man joyously responded, “I don’t know.”
Christmas is a time of great celebration, as it should be. But we need to remember to celebrate the right thing. H.G. Wells once made this great statement: “If there is no God, nothing matters. If there is a God, nothing else matters.” Entering Advent and Christmas, let us be more specific: If Jesus is not the Son of God, nothing matters. If Jesus is the Son of God, nothing else matters.
In other words, if Christmas is nothing more than a nice story, like Santa Claus or the Easter Bunny, then it might be nice festival to take the monotony out of the day. Besides that, it doesn’t matter at all in the scheme of life.
But (and this is a very big but), if Christmas reminds us that not only is there a God, but a personal God who has come to earth in human form – then it makes Christmas one of the most important days in all of human history! There is really no middle ground here. Once again, if Christmas is a festival, it means nothing eternal. If Christmas is real, it means everything in this life, as well as the promises of eternal life.
Christmas comes from the name: “Christ” and “Mass.” In other words, Christmas is worshiping the Christ child. The name reminds us that Christmas is primarily about worshiping Christ.
Now, please don’t think I’m poo-pooing all Christmas celebrations – I’m not. I plan on decorating the house, having some eggnog, opening presents. There is certainly nothing wrong with that. In fact, it’s a good and wonderful thing to do. Just remember the true meaning of why you are doing the celebration this Christmas.
~ God bless, Dan
Worship in December: Advent/Christmas Sermon series
November 26: A Savior Will Come – Isaiah
December 3 – The Savior Will Soon Appear – John the Baptist
December 10 – The Plan of the Savior Unfolds – Mary/Joseph
December 17 – Sunday School Christmas programs
December 24 – The Savior Has Arrived!
3:30 p.m. at Argyle Lutheran
December 25 – The Savior’s Birth in 2023
10:00 a.m. at Yellowstone
Thank you to all who helped make the inaugural Yellowstone's Heritage Potluck a wonderful day of worship and fellowship!
Sunday School Christmas programs – December 17th:
Don’t miss our youth as they share the Christmas story in their own way. The Argyle-Apple Grove Sunday School will put on their program at 9:00 a.m. at Apple Grove. The Yellowstone Sunday School will put on their program at 11:00 a.m.
The WELCA's from both congregations would like to invite you to participate in their annual holiday cookie walk. This will be held Saturday, Dec. 2nd at the Argyle EMS building from 8:00 a.m. to noon (or until sold out). We are hoping for a great selection of holiday baked goods as we enter the holiday season. Please bring your donations to the EMS building from 3 - 6 p.m. on Friday, December 1st. Besides your donations, help is also needed with set-up on Friday, during the sale, and clean-up on Saturday. Thank you for your time and dedication to this joint project.
Support InterVarsity Ministry: Our Christmas Offering will again go to the ministry of InterVarsity Christian Fellowship for the financial support of Yellowstone members Shannon Marion and Scott Marion. InterVarsity Christian Fellowship is a nationwide ministry that reaches college students and faculty with the gospel. Please give generously. Envelopes can be found by the offering plates at church or you can send a check and put “InterVarsity ministry” in the memo.
Decorate the Church for Christmas: We’d like to decorate our churches on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day with Poinsettias. There is a sign-up in the narthex or you can call Pastor Dan (543-3088). The cost is $12. Please place your order by Sunday, December 17th. You may take them home following the worship service. Thank you!
Thank you from Paige Soper: Dear Argyle/Apple Grove and Yellowstone churches, I want to thank you for your very generous donations and monthly support! Thank you for keeping me and my ministry with Chi Alpha at UW-Oshkosh in your prayers too. They have been very felt this year already as we have yet again broken last year’s record of 32 students going to Fall Retreat by bringing 43 this year! The Lord is really at work on our campus at Oshkosh, but numbers were up across the state too, which was amazing to see. Thank you for putting your faith, trust and hope in me to do God’s work. I am so thankful for your continued support.
God bless, Paige Soper
Stewardship: We continue to give thanks for everyone’s generosity to the ministry of our church! If you are not able to make it to church to give your offering, we have included a self-addressed envelope in the newsletter.
October Treasurers’ and Pastor’s reports:
Argyle-Apple Grove Yellowstone
Beginning balance: $5,386.98 Beginning Balance: $7,961.17
Income: $7,975.07 Income: $6,090.40
Expenses: $4,875.57 Expenses: $6,857.96
Ending Balance $8,486.48 Ending Balance: $7,193.61
Our FINANCIAL BOOKS FOR 2023 WILL CLOSE ON SUNDAY, DECEMBER 31st. Any offering you want to count towards the 2023 calendar year must be received by this time. Thank you for your continued support of the ongoing ministry to one another, to the community, and the world.
Yellowstone WELCA will pack cheer pails Sunday, Dec. 3rd at 9:30 a.m. Donated items and donated time are both appreciated.
BULK MAIL NEWSLETTER: There will be one more bulk mailing after this one as the US Postal Service changed how bulk mailing can be sent and beginning in 2024, we can no longer use it. Here are your alternatives to get you the newsletter: 1. Receive the newsletter through email, we will send it electronically to you via a PDF file. 2. You can choose to get the information through our website. 3. Before the end of the month, we will have the newsletter available in the narthex of all three churches for people to pick up a copy. 4. We will send newsletters out as first class mail to you if that is your preference. If you have not let Pastor Dan know how you would like to receive the newsletter, please do so in the next couple of weeks, so you can keep up on our church activities/news.
The annual drive for the Argyle Area Christmas Giving Tree has begun! Please help support those who need our help this Christmas by picking up an ornament with information regarding a needy child or adult in our area. The ornaments will be available at the First National Bank and Trust Company in Argyle after November 20th, until all the ornaments are gone. Please let a teller at the bank know the number off the ornament when you pick it up. Gifts should be returned to the First National Bank and Trust Company in Argyle by Saturday, December 9th with the ornament attached to the package. Help us to bring joy to a family that might not have a Christmas!
Coffee hour has returned! On the first early service of each month, we will have coffee hour. We began in October. There will be a sign up for those who would be willing to provide goodies.
SNOW ON SUNDAY If we cancel church due to bad weather, please listen to WDMP (99.3 FM). Because cancellations do NOT get put on right away, feel free to call the parsonage (543-3088) or check the website (www.YellowstoneArgyleAppleGrove.com) to see if services are cancelled. I will also send out an email. If you are not currently on the church email list, let Pastor Dan know your email and he will put you on it.
FIRST COMMUNION CLASSES will be held in January. Our constitution does not have a required age. If you believe that your child understands what Communion is about and is ready to partake in His meal, please sign up in the narthex.
We will meet on January 10th and 24th from 5:30-7:15 p.m. at Argyle Lutheran. One parent is required to attend the first 20 minutes of the first class and a parent needs to be present at 7:00 p.m. at the end of the second meeting. If you have questions, talk to Pastor Dan.
A/Applestone Youth News
Thank you to everyone who helped gather donations for the Argyle Food Pantry during Trick-or-Treat for Hunger. We re-stocked the shelves!
Youth Quake 2024: On years when we have the National Youth Gathering, we’ve usually left it up to the youth and parents considering the expenses to funding both events. Quake this coming year will be February 16–18, 2024 in Wisconsin Dells and is for 6th through 12th graders. The cost for early bird registration (due 11/30) is $99; after that, the cost is $129. There is an additional cost for housing which cannot be determined until we have a count of how many are attending; an estimated cost is $70. Who is interested?
A/Applestone Sunday Study: December 3rd at Argyle – we will meet once a month to study and grow our faith lives using the material from the theme of the National Youth Gathering. We will bring any youth that wish to attend church at late service at Yellowstone after class.
A/Applestone Youth communication:
***SnapChat: We communicate, share updates and pictures. Parents are welcome to join.
*There’s always the website to check:
Join “applestone youth group” on Facebook: Olivia Melland, one of our esteemed youth leaders, has undertaken the task of beginning our own Facebook page. She is posting pictures of events and announcements. Please join us!
Pastor Dan will be using the rest of his vacation after Christmas. He will be at home and available in cases of emergency.
December 3, 10: Claire/Hunter Holmes
December 3: Peter Herman
December 10: Ann Bohlman
Yellowstone Communion Assistants
December 3: Kristine O’Connor
December 3, 10: Connie Granberg
Argyle-Apple Grove Acolytes
December 3, 10: Ellie/Bryson Coffey
Argyle-Apple Grove Readers
December 3: Julie Webber
December 10: Beth Fransen
Argyle-Apple Grove Communion Assistants
December 3: Laurie Guthrie
Argyle-Apple Grove Greeters
December 3, 10: Laurie Guthrie