Good evening, Mt. Carmel Family! I know that so much of our communication over the past few weeks has taken place via Facebook and One Call, but since some of you do not have Facebook, I assumed an update this way might be helpful.While this time apart has slowed down our lives considerably in many areas, Jesus is definitely at work in more ways than ever!
What a glorious Gospel-centered weekend we had with our Good Friday reflection on the Cross and the Easter Sunday celebration of the Resurrection! Even though we could not be together, it was a true joy to focus all our hearts and minds on the One who gave His life to bring us eternal freedom!
Here are some updates for the church family:
MT. CARMEL FACES: One of the most enjoyable “new” things we have started is to highlight one of church families on Facebook. Since we do not get a chance to see one another, we are calling this Mt. Carmel Faces. If you have not yet had a chance to watch any of them, click here.
ONLINE BIBLE STUDIES: We are continuing with our daily online Bible studies. Pastor Frank Good and Carolyn Palmer are weekly contributors, and I am thankful for each person who has chosen to contribute. We have made it easy to access all of the online Bible studies here.
YOUTH MINISTRY: Pastor Micah continues to put up new and fresh content for our youth ministry—especially on Instagram, where so many Mt. Carmel teens are connected. If you would like to watch any of his “mini-messages” and be encouraged (in only the way Pastor Micah can encourage you), click here.
KIDS’ MINISTRY: From a delightful Easter message by Kyle and Jamie Seal to a weekly lesson from the Gospel Project to MCCA Elementary Chapels, there is a great deal of content for your children to continue to learn more about the goodness and glory of Jesus. To access that online content, click here.
COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT: Here’s just some of the ways Mt. Carmel has been reaching out into the Page County community. Gift baskets, donuts, and coffee were delivered to both the Luray Police Department and Page County Sheriff’s Office. Donuts and coffee were delivered by John Thomas to the emergency dispatch office, and he is planning to do the same for our Luray Volunteer Fire Department. 10 different gift baskets were delivered by to the 10 departments at Page Memorial Hospital. Over 80 Experience Bags were prepared and delivered children all over Page County! A big thanks to Monica Hinegardner (God laid this outreach on her heart), Pastor Micah, and so many of you for making this happen! A recap of the event can be found here. Food for Page One is continuing to be collected at the church. If you would like to contribute, you can deliver place your donations directly in the trailer parked outside of the church. It is taken weekly to Page One. Many religious paperback books were brought in to share at the Page County Jail. If you have any that you would like to contribute, you may drop them off at the church office.
DWELL BIBLE APP: This app has been a great blessing to me! This smartphone or tablet app offers so many different types of Scripture passages and personalized playlists. It even offers Scripture playlists to which you can fall asleep. This app is being offered free through churches for 90 days. If you would be interested (and I would strongly encourage you to give it a try), the link can be found here.
ONLINE GIVING: The faithfulness and provision of God throughout this time has been nothing short of miraculous! What we have seen weekly is that while the number of donors is down considerably, those who are giving have been truly generous with their gifts to the Lord through the church. God continues to provide weekly for the needs of our ministry. The pastors, staff, and our MCCA teachers are continuing to work diligently to meet the many needs of the ministry, and our faithful missionaries are still needing our support as they work to help those across the world in need. (Click here to look at this video from Marc Buxton—one of our missionaries in Manila—serving soup on the street to those in need.) If you would like to contribute financially to Mt. Carmel, the easiest way to do so is through our website here.
PRAYER REQUESTS: Finally, even in the midst of this global pandemic, individual lives are in desperate need of prayer. Let me list a few of the more current needs of our church members. (If your need is not listed, please do not be offended. We regularly send out a Care Ministry letter with all the ongoing needs of our church family. We are just mentioning a few here.) Becky Caviness’ mother passed away yesterday. Her mother knew the Lord, and Becky is thankful she is no longer suffering here. Please pray as the funeral service will be limited to just 10. Larry Ennis’ father passed away this morning. His father knew the Lord, and Larry and Joni were able to travel to Texas to be with him. Please pray as they prepare for a service next week. Jennifer Roy was taken to UVA yesterday morning, and she was admitted immediately. She has been very weak. She was given a blood transfusion and had an allergic reaction. The family is awaiting the test results for Jennifer—but please pray for her condition. To compound things, neither Jay nor the kids can be with Jennifer because of the lockdown.
If you do not receive the weekly Care Letter (and regular prayer updates), but you would like to be placed on that list, just send an e-mail with your name and “Care Letter” to Jamie Hasse by clicking here. My desire would be for every person who attends Mt. Carmel to receive these prayer updates—not simply because we all know the day will come when we will ask for prayer, but because we truly love one another.