Thursday, March 30, 2017

Pastor Doug's April 2017 Newsletter

The Wonder Of The Empty Tomb

The ancient world boasted of 7 wonders; The pyramids of Egypt, the hanging gardens of Babylon.  the temple of the goddess Diana at Ephesus, the lighthouse at Alexandria, Egypt, the Colossus in the harbor at Rhodes, the statue of the pagan gos Zeus at Olympia, and the tomb of the Persian King Halicarnassus. 

Of all of those ancient wonders, only the pyramids are still standing. All of the others have crumbled, along with the ancient world powers whose accomplishments they memorialized. But another wonder form the ancient world is still very much alive in the world today! This wonder is far more significant that all 7 of these ancient landmarks put together. This is the wonder of the empty tomb of Jesus Christ.

When the body of Jesus was placed int he tomb, the forces of evil were certain that they had won the victory at last.But Jesus was raised from the dead on the 3rd day. His Resurrection proves that He is far more powerful than sin and death, and all of the other  negative forces that Satan uses against us. Wonder of wonders, Jesus Lives! His dynamic power is available to all who place their faith and trust in Him. 

"To be able to find joy in another's joy; that is the secret of happiness."
George Bernamos

Heart Delights

God is with me and I am with God. God's blessings of life light, and love flow through me. I have a special place in God's world.


Opportunity knocks but once, but temptation leans on the doorbell.

For the gift of life and health, Oh God, and the strength to do my work, I praise you.  Amen

Learn to forgive. You will never be happy with bitterness in your soul.  

Sunday, March 5, 2017

Pastor Doug's March 2017 Newsletter

"Thoughts while watching children

I watch them at play
Such serious labor 
Ceaseless Activity
A change from thing to thing
Contemplation, a plan
Action, error
Conference, change
A new plan;
Faults corrected
Ideas corrected
Activity renewed; success
Such glee, too much perhaps
A fall, a hurt
Amusing pseudo tears
That too soon disappear
Joy overcomes hurt
No time for despair
Their falsity exposed
No one will wait
The race keeps on
Inevitably they will change
Individualism will temper
Zest, empathy, camaraderie
Paths now closely sewn
Will be torn by the living
They will wander
Follow temptation, needs, desires, enticement
A plan, action, error
They will fall again
Cry their pseudo tears inwanrdly
Get up and run again
Quicker this time
They have learned not to lag
\Now they are the support
Their infancy knew
They watch theirs at play
And understand, without knowing
And someday they will see
Theirs watching theirs

Will Solo


The kids were fighting again, and mother shouted from the kitchen, where she was working, "Stop that fighting. Haven't I told you to go by the Golden Rule?" "Yes", came a voice from the recreation room, "But he did it to me first." 



"Whoever does not regard what he has as most ample wealth is unhappy, though he be the master of the world."  Epicurus

"Happiness is a by-product of an effort to make someone else happy."  Greta Palmer

"There is an hour wherein a man might be happy all his life, could he find it." George Herbert

"The happy people are those who are producing something; the bored people are those who are consuming much and producing nothing." Dean W. B. Inge

Monday, February 6, 2017

Pastor Doug's February 2017 Newsletter


"Love is ever the beginning of knowledge, as fire is of light". 

"Love indeed is a light burden, not cumbering, but lightening the bearer, and 
making glad both young and old. Love is the fairest and most profitable guest that a reasonable creature can entertain. In the light and warmth of love, our lives grow strong and comely, a better dwelling,  a sweeter, never I  found."
-Richard Rolle

"But Ruth said, “Do not urge me to leave you or to return from following you. For where you go I will go, and where you lodge I will lodge. Your people shall be my people, and your God my God.  Where you die I will die, and there will I be buried. May the Lord do so to me and more also if anything but death parts me from you.”
-Bible,  Ruth 1:16-17

 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life".
-Bible, John 3:16

"Love is a well from which we can drink only as much as we have put in, and the stars that shine from it are only our eyes looking in."

Things Money Can't Buy:

Common Sense

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Pastor Doug's December 2016 Newsletter

Dear Friends,

It's here. Christmas. A couple of weeks ago as I walked into our local Wal-Mart, I was greeted by a fully decorated Christmas Tree. This was 3 weeks before Thanksgiving. Television and the newspapers  have been flooded with ads for Black Friday Sales, although some retailers have felt a return of the spirit of the season, and are giving their employees Thanksgiving Day off, This is all part of the world's view of Christmas; sales, Santa, snowmen, and every child with more toys than they know what to do with. "Merry Christmas" has, all too often, been removed and replaced with the generic "Happy Holidays". However, even as the world turns the entire Christmas season into one great big shopping event, with Santas greeting us everywhere we go, Christians instead hold dear the knowledge that Christmas is when we celebrate the birth of our Savior, Jesus Christ, when God sent His Son into the world to save all mankind from our sins. Christmas is love, joy, peace, and hope all wrapped up in the form of one small child, born in a manger, under the stars, and surrounded by shepherds and angels. This year lets all remember to keep Christ in Christmas, and wish everyone we see a "Merry Christmas", as it is Christmas, the celebration of the birth of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

Merry Christmas to all!

Pastor Doug


They were overjoyed at seeing the star, and on entering the house they saw the child with His mother Mary. Matthew 2:10-11

How domestic. How ordinary! 

The Magi followed a wondrous star until it stops over "the place where the Child was born", and what is that place? A house. That's all, Not a castle, not a mansion, but just a house. The Magi discover the Messiah, the Son of God, in an ordinary house. The find Him in ordinary circumstances, with an ordinary looking mother. 

How often do we go looking for Jesus in all kinds of extraordinary places; on a mountaintop, at the seashore, or in any kind of spectacular location? It is always wonderful to see the magnificence of God's creation, but let's not forget that the best location for finding Christ is all around us, in incredibly ordinary circumstances. We find Him in our homes, in our workplaces, and in gatherings of our families and friends.

In other words, the Holy is in the ordinary. That is one of the most basic teachings of the Christmas season. The Son of God arrived not with the kind of pomp and circumstance most people might expect,  but rather entered history in the most ordinary of circumstances, and that is where we are still most likely to find Him.

Lord Jesus, Thank you for being present, always, in every ordinary time and place in my life. 

Saturday, October 8, 2016

Pastor Doug's October 2016 Newsletter

Dear Struthers Families and Friends,

After many long months of hard work, the annual Canfield Fair for this year is over. Even though the Fair officially lasts only 7 days, the set-up and tear down add many more days to the project. The planning began months ago by the Fair Committee, and they worked hard at creating the menu, setting prices, arranging to move the trailer to the fairgrounds, making sure that everything was clan and sanitary, and making sure we had staffing for every moment the Fair is open,  They worked hard in finding suppliers who would offer the best prices so we could keep prices as low as possible while also offering the highest quality food we possibly can. Those involved made countless trips to our suppliers to purchase the items we needed, and then volunteers worked one long, hot evening, making 160 pounds of sloppy Joe! They chopped up  peppers and onions by the baskets, and cooked, and cooked, and cooked some more!,

This is just one quick glimpse into the work this ministry does. There are so many people to thank for their time and hard work in making sure the Fair came off without a hitch. The Fair Committee leaders, Phil, Fran, Sheri, Tom, and Dale guided us through another year of work at the fair, which provides vital dollars with which we can support important ministries of our church. The money we earn at the Fair allows us to be the hands and feet of Christ, serving those in need, comforting people who are suffering, and helping keep God's House in order. To all who took part, and to all who stopped by to buy a sloppy Joe, a chili dog, a street taco, or any of the other Fair treats we offered at the Fair, we thank you! We thank you for your endless hours of work and the effort you put forth to make sure everything ran so smoothly. Thank you for your prayers, and your support of these leaders, We thank YOU! We thank the men and women who had the vision to begin this ministry 54 years ago; to step out in faith, and to make the investment to begin this project, and we honor them all with the reward of 54 years of great service to our families.

See you at the Fair next year!

God Bless,

Pastor Doug

Friday, September 2, 2016

Pastor Doug's September 2016 Newsletter

Everything seems to be changing today, from pencil and slide rules, to the computers that perform everything from our personal and financial needs, to very specialized surgeries. Home phones are almost a thing of the past as cell phones are the main means of communication.

From home cooked meals to microwave meals and fast food, horses to cars, trains to planes, and someday people may even travel in space. Everything seems to be be evolving.

One thing, however, remains unchanged; God, His Word, and Jesus Christ. His Grace and Salvation are the same today as they were when Jesus first offered them to those He walked among some 2000 years ago.

Today God, the Church, and Jesus, are far from many peoples thoughts and lives. They have little, if any, interaction with God, except for an occasional profane utterance of God's name. We are all hungry for something to fill our lives. While the world fills our lives with "things", we are all seeking the peace and happiness that comes from God.

How many minutes a day do our children  spend worshipping, thanking, or praying to God, or studying the Word of God? We wonder why our kids are doing the harmful things they are, and why there is so much senseless violence and murder today. This happens when we forget that Jesus walked here, the Word made flesh, sharing a timeless message; God's love for us all.

Have you experienced it this year? I challenge us all to shut off the TV, turn off the computer, and spend an evening together as family or friends, in fellowship and reading the Bible for just 10 minutes each week, praying for your family, friends, co-workers, our communities, churches, our nation, our service personnel, and ourselves. I know that Jesus always found time with His Father in Heaven. It was important to him. Ten minutes a week doesn't seem like much time, until the world, our schedules, and all of the other distractions step in, and then we find ourselves scratching our heads,wondering where the day went, as weeks, months, and even years slide by. Don't let this year slip by. Make some time for God.  Set a reminder on your iPhone, iPad, Tablet, PDA, or even just a note written on your calendar. Text one another to remind each other to make just 10 minutes this week for God. I truly believe that we will be changed by the time we spend with our Holy, Heavenly Father.

God Bless,

Pastor Doug

Sunday, August 7, 2016

Pastor Doug's August 2016 Newsletter

August is upon us now, and I sit back and think where; Where has the summer gone? In a few weeks school will start, the Fair work begins, and we return to our regular lives.

Last September, we, (a group of leaders from the 5 churches involved) began to plan for our annual Mission Trip for the summer. Many hours, meetings, and ideas later, we had a plan for how we would work this trip.

52 people would travel to Georgetown SC to work on homes that the United Methodist Church Volunteers in Mission had selected. Around May I felt the trip getting closer, but so much activity at the church had kept us very busy. June arrived, and our focus turned t the Mission Trip, the 4th of July Parade, getting hundreds and hundreds of bottles of water ready, getting the kids prepared, and making sure that everything was in place for the mission trip, with permission and insurance forms filled out, vans rented, and food, lots of food purchased.

The 4th of July arrived on Thursday, and we had a great time padding out "the Living Waters", nearly 2000 of them, in fact.Returning to the church, the parade crew was treated to hot dogs and drinks from a group serving them.

The following week. on Friday, the truck was packed full of baggage, food, and tools. Rental vans were picked up, and filled up, and made ready to go. On Saturday morning we gathered the group together, prayed, and headed out for Princeton VA, where we spent the night following the 1st leg of our journey.

On Monday morning, out Mission began in earnest, meeting with the Volunteers in Mission coordinator, where final job changes were worked out, and crews of youth and adults left the Duncan Memorial Church, where we stayed during our Mission. Each crew has jobs assigned, from building a porch and replacing floors, to repairing, or replacing bathrooms, and kitchens, doing drywall work, and painting. We did roofing, and in fact stripped the roof down to the rafters, in spots, and replaced sheet wood, and installed new shingles.

All of these jobs were done by high school youth, and their adult supervisors, in a single week's time. Many of these jobs would have cost the homeowners thousands of dollars if done by a contractor, and none of them would have been able to afford the work. Our youth came into town, fueled by the Spirit, and finished each job on schedule. This was no easy task, by any means, for almost every crew had one adult with minimal skills in the areas in which they worked. These crews, these hard working kids, completed their jobs and forever changed each homeowner's life. By the week, many of the homeowners were actually moved to tears when their crew had to leave.

These youth, and their adult supervisors, became the hands and feet of Jesus Christ in this community. They forever touched their hearts with grace and love. I never get tired of telling people about the power of these trips, and the lives changed;  ours, and the people of the community we join for that wonderful week. We ate, and ate very well, and we slept on the floor of a gym, worked in incredibly hot and humid conditions. We worshipped and prayed every day, and witnessed the power of God changing the lives of His people. Amazing!

This whole Mission was only possible because God was the center of the trip. The youth and adults answered God's call upon their hearts, and the church supported them in prayer and need.

Just amazing, working with God's people.

Pastor Doug

Children Learn what they live.

In children live with criticism,
They learn to condemn.

If children live with hostility, 
\they learn to fight.

If children live with fear,
they learn to be apprehensive.

If children live with pity,
they learn to feel sorry for themselves.

If children live with ridicule,
they learn to be shy.

If children live with jealousy,
they learn what envy is.
If children live with shame,
they learn to feel guilty.

If children live with tolerance,
they learn to be patient.

If children live with encouragement,
they learn to be confident.

If children live with praise,
they learn to appreciate.

If children live with approval,
they learn to like themselves.

If children live with acceptance.
they learn to find love in the world.

If children live with recognition,
they learn to have a goal.

If children live with sharing, 
they learn to be generous.

If children live with honesty and fairness,
they learn what truth and justice are.

If children live with security,
they learn to have faith in themselves, and in those around them.

If children live with friendliness,
they learn that the world is a nice place in which to live.

If children live with serenity,
they learn to have peace of mind.

-- Dorothy L Nolte