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Wednesday, November 25, 2020

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Sunday's Service - November 29, 2020

Sermon Series: A Christmas Carol

The featured Scripture is: Luke 2:1-21
for Mike's message: A Christmas Carol Part 1: O Holy Night.

"It's the most wonderful time of the year!" This was sung by one of my favorite Christmas
Crooners, Andy Williams, back in 1963. I LOVE Christmas! Christmas is my favorite time of year!
I am one of "those people" who turn on the Christmas Carols early! To Rachel Vignon,
it's way too early! (Sorry Rachel, I had too! lol)

As we begin this season of Advent together, we will be taking a journey through the Christmas story through many of our most favorite Christmas hymns! I look forward to bringing you messages of Hope, Peace, Joy, and Love as we prepare our hearts for Christ's second coming! We have HOPE! His name is Jesus!

Happy Thanksgiving to you and your families from the Hileman's and Merry Christmas to all!
- Pastor Mike

We will celebrate the Sacrament of Communion.

Join us Sunday ~ In-Person & Online ~ Worship at 11am

Connecting Life Church Facebook Page

Come Grow With Us!


Carols: A Christmas Devotional

God is with us – in answered promises, realized dreams, and refreshed hope. How could we help but sing? During this Christmas season, explore the songs that were born from our joy that Christ has entered the world and rediscover their relevance in your life today. As you read these Carols devotionals over the next 25 days, allow God’s truth to be revealed to you as it was revealed to all of mankind just over 2,000 years ago on that holy night in a little town called Bethlehem.

This is a wonderful resource (some of you might recognize bits of these devotionals from our 2018 Advent reading series) to use to accompany Pastor Mike's sermon series this Advent season: Carols: A Christmas Devotional PDF



Scenes From Last Sunday




Advent Candle Lighting

The Advent season is all about reflecting on how we can prepare our hearts and homes for Christ’s birth in the world as it is today. It is a time for churches and families to remember, through prayer, reflections, and special music what the true meaning of Jesus’ birth really is. When we observe Advent, we are invited to step away from our busy lives to consider how we commemorate His birth. It is also a time to reflect on the triumphant return of Jesus at the second coming.

One of the ways we can begin to prepare for a meaningful celebration of Christ’s birth is with the lighting of candles on the Advent wreath. The circular wreath of evergreen boughs reminds us of God’s forever love. The four outer candles - Hope, Peace, Joy, Love - will help us to focus on the true meaning of this holy season. Christmas Eve will bring the lighting of the inner candle, the Christ candle, to remind us that Jesus has come as the Light of the World.

Rich & Barb Weimer will lead us in a reading of Isaiah 9:2-7, as they light the Candle of Hope.

Worshiping Together

Spend Sunday morning with us ~ online or in-person at 11:00am.
Use the Facebook link Connecting Life and let's grow together! We can continue to join
together in Worship and Praise and Prayer, whether in the Sanctuary or on Facebook.

Please send your prayer requests in for our Joys & Concerns email that will go out on
Monday morning! The CGCC website has a Contact/Prayer Request page, you can
email Jen Lynch directly, or use


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Turkey Drive 2020 Success!

"We helped 18 families through this event!
We are grateful for the donations from CLC and CGCC and for everything they did to help spread love throughout our community."
~ James Crawford, Catalyst Men's Ministry Leader

Bible Studies & Ministries

We will be following the health and safety directives during small group meetings and events as well as Worship. Masks and social distancing are required anytime you are in our building, as we try our best to stay healthy together. Thank you for your understanding and cooperation!

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Sunday Morning Bible Study
9:30am, upstairs in the Activity Room ~ Pilgrim's Progress by John Bunyan

Ladies Bible Study ~ Not meeting this week.
Friday, at 9am in the Activity Room ~ Who Do You Say That I AM? by Becky Harling

Wednesday Morning Prayer Group
10am, participate via Zoom ~ Personal Meeting ID: 6936117456, Password: prayer


Designed to help adults grow as Christ followers:
* Taylor LifeGroup: Sundays, 6pm at the Crawford/Taylor house
* Weimer LifeGroup: Tuesdays, 10am on Zoom - Next meeting December 8th.


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Thankful Thoughts

Thankfulness does not end on Thanksgiving day!

Help us fill the foyer window with all the things for which you are grateful. Next time you are here, take a moment to add your thoughts to a seasonal shape and tape it up. Not coming to church in person? Please email us your thankful thoughts and we will gladly put them in the display for you. We would love to fill the window up before Christmas! So many reasons to give thanks!

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Children's Ministry

Collide Kids Wednesday - What this world needs more than anything are Jesus followers that love like Him. Jesus demonstrated to us how to live His life, a perfect life of love. Today's lesson will help us learn how to love others like Jesus did.

Grab your kid(s) and spend 25 minutes together singing, dancing, laughing, and learning! We would love for you to also have your child(ren) memorize this week's scripture verse and motions and upload a video of them in the comment section under the video on the CLC Facebook page! Have a great week, Collide Kids!

Youth Group

Kids in 5th-12th Grade
Youth Group will not be meeting during the rest of November. Next week, we will evaluate and decide if we can meet in December. This break in our gathering will not impede our Christmas Project. Meeting or not meeting, the collection must go on!

Youth Group Christmas Project 2020

We appreciate all the donations that are coming in!
Grab a reminder can off the tree and see what you can donate to help
community members in need this holiday season.

Second Harvest


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For whom are you praying today?
How can we pray for you?

We are here to pray with and for you, anytime! Prayer needs sent by early Monday morning will be included in the weekly Joys & Concerns email. We are also glad to send out prayer requests and praise reports anytime throughout the week!



Thank you to Darla Smith for writing and Marcia Kreps for sharing Darla's uplifting words with us.

"This week I have wrestled with the Word God gave me. “SHAKEN.” These past few weeks in my family alone our faith and hope has been “shaken.” Some of my dear friends reading this right now, their faith has been “shaken.” The spirit of discouragement is heavy on the earth right now. When I have been trying to pray, it seems like discouragement tries to take over even in prayer. My prayers are even being “shaken.” Possibly this week’s encouragement is meant to keep us in tune and aware of the enemy’s tactics more than ever before. Will we continue to be “shaken” or will we let the Holy Spirit comfort and heal our hearts? I was reminded this week of Job in the Bible – losing everything – but he was not “shaken.” Daniel facing certain death in the Lion’s den – but he was not “shaken.” Ordinary people just like us – facing storms in their lives just like us – different times – same storms. No matter our circumstance – do not be “shaken.” Sometimes it seems like the waves are crashing in – let us not be “shaken.” God is our present help in times of trouble – every trouble – every sadness – every storm – every sickness – every discouragement – we will not be “shaken.” Holy Spirit, heal our hearts – calm our fears – clear our minds – build our faith – guide our steps – renew our spirit to align with only You, I pray."
"I pray everyday that we become even more grounded in Him than ever before."

I wait quietly before God, for my victory comes from him. He alone is my rock and my salvation, my fortress where I will never be shaken. ~ Psalm 62:1-2 (NLT)

I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. ~ 2 Timothy 4:7 (NKJV)

New Devotionals Available

Stop in the Great Room to pick up the Our Daily Bread for Dec/Jan/Feb as well as an Advent devotional. Please feel free to take one to friends or family members.

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Rock Kidz Uganda Fundraiser

Handmade bracelets and a necklace are available at the front desk. All proceeds will go to the construction of Divine Junior School.



November Worship ~ Online & In-Person

Pastor Mike Hileman ~ Sundays at 11:00am
Join us at church or online via Facebook Live: Connecting Life

We will continue to be guided by the health and safety guidelines set forth by the
governor and the health department, so we require masks to be worn in our building.
We're excited to welcome you to Worship, in church and online!


Connecting Life Church Membership Meeting

Friday, December 4, 7pm via Zoom
We will be voting on the 2021 Budget. The 2021 Budget Proposal will be emailed to you
prior to the meeting to review. It is important for all members to attend if possible.

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Our Mission Statement: To cultivate personal, social, and community growth through gardening, education, and opportunity for people of all abilities.



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News of the Week

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas! We spent this short week decking our halls, both inside and outside! Time was also spent taking down the autumn decorations, putting finishing pre-winter touches on the raised beds, and, of course, cleaning. It has been a busy week full of fun tasks and much laughter.

Today we are ending our week with a 25th birthday celebration for Dustin. He asked for his Grandma Eileen's cupcakes (Yum!) and Jill and Frank also provided pizza, carrots, and chips for a delicious birthday feast. Happy Birthday, Dustin!

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Kelly Came to Celebrate Dustin's Birthday!


Last Chance for the GG Candle Fundraiser

If you or your friends/family would like to purchase from this fundraiser, please let us know or order at the front desk in the Great Room. Orders and payment (cash or checks made out to Goodness Grows) due no later than Monday morning. We will then place the order and have the candles here 10-12 days later, in time for Christmas.

Thank you for your support of GG and for trying this new way of raising money with us!

Jungle Jam & Juicy Jam

Goodness Grows Jungle Jam and Juicy Jam available at Reach for the STARS online: Shop Local.
They even provide curbside pickup in Salem to encourage social distancing.
We are also glad to arrange a jam pick up here at GG.



Goodness Grows

The non-profit ministry of Common Ground Church Community, Goodness Grows is always busy on our property. GG works with students and adults with disabilities, providing vocational habilitation training in a fun and hands-on way. The GG crew also maintains the grounds and cleans the church building. There are many ways to support GG, including:
* Online Shopping ~ Just use Amazon Smile - choose Goodness Grows as your charity of choice.
* Volunteering ~ Give of your time and get back lots of love & smiles!
* Donating Items ~ We are always in need of items like basic jam making supplies such as regular 8oz. canning jars, lids, sugar, and white vinegar.
* Purchasing Our Products ~ Proceeds from jam & crafts go right back to our programs.
* Charitable Giving ~ As a small non-profit, Goodness Grows depends upon generous supporters who give monetary support. A contribution to Goodness Grows is tax-deductible, to the extent allowed by law. Your donations help us to continue our mission of working with people of all abilities.

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Rock Kidz Uganda, Inc.

Their mission is to Advocate, Advise, Advance the ministries
of Divine Soccer in Masaka, Uganda for the benefit of the
children of the community

Sponsorships can be made to Rock Kidz Uganda, Inc.,
1814 E. 3rd St., Salem, OH 44460 or via Pay Pal at
Learn more on Facebook at: Rock Kidz Uganda.
Check out their new website:

Brightside Toy Drive

Scarf Drive Thru December 11

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Coat & Clothing & More Giveaway ~ 2021!

Tell your friends, family, neighbors, and co-workers that we collect items year-round...clothes for all ages and sizes, along with coats, hats, bags, purses, shoes, housewares, books, school supplies, stuffed animals, puzzles, toys... anything clean and useful! We have a donation barrel and storage space ready to go.


For I was hungry and you gave me food;
I was thirsty and you gave me a drink;
I was a stranger and you took me in;
I was naked and you clothed me;
I was sick and you visited me.
I was in prison and you came to me.

.....When you did it to one of the least of these my brothers and sisters,
you were doing it to me.

Matthew 25: 35-36, 40


What can YOU do?



If you know of any interesting news or events,
please let us know, so that we can pass it on to others!


Thanksgiving Fun

Spend some time with your family online having a Thanksgiving turkey adventure with the New York State Museum ~ We’re just wild for turkeys! These amazing birds live in NY forests year-round and can fly when they are just a few weeks old. Learn more about this animal and make your own turkey craft for the holiday: Turkey Talk

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Festival of Trees

Southern Park Mall
Supporting the MCC Relay For Life
The event will run every Friday thru Sunday from November 27th thru December 13th. The event will be open Fridays from 4pm-7pm, Saturdays from 11am-7pm, and Sundays from 12pm-6pm. Tickets can be purchased in person, or online. Keeping the health and safety of the community and volunteers as highest priority. Tickets can be purchased through the Festival of Trees Relay team at this link: Festival of Trees

Santa Visits the Canfield Library

Canfield Library Parking Lot, 11am-1pm on Saturday, November 28
A drive-thru visit with Santa at Canfield Library. Listen to Santa read a story on your car radio and snap a picture of Santa, his reindeer, and sleigh as you drive through the lot. You can drop off your letter to Santa on your way out and we’ll be sure he gets it to take back to the North Pole. For this special visit, our parking lot will be one way only, entering at Lisbon Street and exiting at Route 224.

Light Up Leetonia

Saturday, 5-7pm
235 Main St, Leetonia, OH 44431
The annual lighting of the holiday tree in downtown Leetonia. Santa arrives at the Post Office on a firetruck!

Christmas Fun in Salem Next Thursday

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Today - Dustin Snyder
November 26 - Thanksgiving
November 28 - Small Business Saturday
November 29 - First Sunday of Advent
December 1 - Giving Tuesday

If we don't have your special days, please let us know!



November 25 - December 2, 2020 . . .
Today, 9am-2pm - GG at Work
Today, 10am - Prayer Group via Zoom
Today, 12pm - Collide Kids Online
Tonight, 6:30pm - GG CPR/First Aid
Thursday & Friday - Office & GG Closed
Friday, 6:30pm - Praise Band
Sunday, 9:30am - Sunday Morning Class
Sunday, 11am - In-Person & Online Worship
Sunday, 6pm - Taylor LifeGroup
Wednesday, 10am - Prayer Group via Zoom
Wednesday, 12pm - Collide Kids Online
Wednesday, 9:30pm - Session Meeting

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Seeking to reflect the unconditional love of God,
our mission is to help people connect -
to God, to one another,
and to God's purpose for the world.


Come grow with us!

Common Ground Church Community
Connecting Life Church
2310 West South Range Road
North Lima, Ohio 44452


For more information, call 330-549-9408 or contact us by email at

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