DEC 2018/JAN 2019 Newsletter

Prospect United Methodist Church

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"He Came to Bring…"

The Barna research institute has shared that when many non-Christians are asked, “Why is it you won’t visit a church?”, the most often heard response is related to “fear.” It’s not the case that the unchurched are “uninterested” or “too busy.” They just have too much fear of being judged, fear of being criticized, and fear of being bullied.

What a shame! Wouldn’t it be wonderful if the Church of Jesus Christ could rewrite that narrative? Jesus certainly came to bring truth, and the truth often convicts our hearts. But more than anything, Jesus came to bring hope, peace, joy, love and victory to a world that is desperate to receive such gifts.

Maybe this Advent/Christmas season you could personally invite two unchurched friends, family members or co-workers to church before the end of 2018. (Bishop Frank Beard’s challenge for each of us is to bring two unchurched people we know to a church event.) If you do, they’ll experience a Jesus who doesn’t judge them…but who came to demonstrate how much God loves them!

December 2: Jesus Came to Bring…HOPE

December 9: Jesus Came to Bring…PEACE

December 16: (8:45 Service) - Our Prospect Choir (joined by our Kids Choir) will present the Christmas story through song

December 16: (10:45 Service) - Jesus Came to Bring…JOY

December 23: Jesus Came to Bring…LOVE

Christmas Eve (7:00 pm): Jesus Came…for YOU

I hope you are already making plans to join us for Advent at Prospect, and are beginning to think of family, friends and co-workers you can invite to join us so that they may come to realize that Jesus really is the answer to (not the source of) all of our fears!

<><, Pastor Steve

January/February Sermon Series:

Suit Up: Putting on the Armor of God!

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December 2018/January 2019 calendar below!

You can also download the printable version by clicking on the link!

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Treasurer's Report

Goodness, here we are at the holidays, just doesn’t seem possible. We have had a good year financially at PUMC due to the generosity of you, our friends and members, and I thank you.

Our financial obligations are paid, mission budget has been paid, and we are looking forward to the March to the Manager to get our mission budget off to a good start for next year.

The Mary Martha bake sale was a great success. We netted $699.00 which will all be given to our mission projects. We have paid over half of the parking lot project, and our silent auction and turkey supper raised $16,000.00. Our Stewardship drive is now finished and we will have those figures available at a later date. We have been blessed for sure.

We look forward to a new year and what God has in store for us.

As a side note, our turkey supper was such a success due to the hard work from all of you. We served 700 people, this is an outreach from our church to the community, you could feel the fellowship of the people there, the positive attitude of everyone, I just can not say Thank You enough to all of you. The Silent Auction was also such a success due to the donations and hard work of all of you and the people in charge.

I pray all of you have a blessed holiday season and a Happy New Year.

God Bless, Bonnie Mankle, Treasurer

End of Year Giving to Prospect UMC:

As 2018 comes racing to a close, you may find yourself wanting to make an additional charitable contribution before the end of the tax year. If so, we hope that you will consider the church within such giving considerations. Special gifts above and beyond your regular contribution could be earmarked for the General Fund, our Building Maintenance Fund, Mortgage Reduction, the Youth Fund, or other special projects. Please feel free to contact Pastor Steve if you would like to discuss a special gift option. We are asking that all contributions to the church, that you want credited to your 2018 giving, be received at Prospect no later than Sunday, December 30th.

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If you would like to purchase a poinsettia to help decorate the church sanctuary during the Christmas season, please sign-up NOW-December 2nd. Cost of the poinsettias is $10/plant. Sign-Up Sheet is available in the gathering area.


March to the Manger/Christmas Eve offering

This year’s March to the Manger is scheduled for Sunday, December 16th during the 8:45 AM service. Each year, following the choir’s cantata, the congregation is given an opportunity to bring a special offering to the manger as a present for Christ and his work through the Missions Ministries/Partnerships of Prospect UMC. This offering, along with the entirety of the offering received during our 7:00 Christmas Eve service will go to support the

missions budget of the church (i.e. We do not keep any of these special offerings for our own budget needs. We give them away as a means of reminding ourselves that“Christmas is not our birthday.”).

This year’s missions budget has been approved at $13,300. Of course, realizing the

vision of this budget is fully dependent upon your generosity. As you pray about your gift to the manger & Christmas Eve offering, you might consider a contribution that is equal in value to the most expensive gift you plan to purchase this Christmas or you might consider offering a tithe (10%) of your entire Christmas present budget.

Either way, let us all work together to ensure that Jesus remains at the center

of our Christmas focus. Thank you for your gift to the Christ child… a gift that will spread Christmas love to those in need!


Join us at 7:00 pm on December 24th for our Christmas Eve Candlelight Service (with communion) as we celebrate the birth of King Jesus!

Worship will feature music from our Sanctuary Choir, Children, Bells, the Praise Team, and the congregation’s singing of Silent Night as candlelight fills the sanctuary.

ONE SERVICE-December 30th

On Sunday, December 30th, we will celebrate the First Sunday of Christmas (and last Sunday of 2018) with a single worship service at 8:45.


We will be de-decorating the church on Sunday, January 6th, 2019. Early service helpers will be packing up the Fellowship Hall and Gathering Area following the 8:45 service. Second service helpers will be packing up the Sanctuary and any other spots still needing de-decorated following the 10:45 service. All are invited to stay and help.
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Dunlap Senior Center at Prospect UMC!

PUMC is now the proud host location for the new Senior Citizen Activity Center here in the Village of Dunlap.

Located in the lower level of the church, the Senior Activity Center is open every Tuesday and Thursday (except for holidays) from 9:00am-3:00pm for men and women 50 years and older and is free!

The Senior Center provides a warm setting where you can meet people, join a card game, put together a puzzle, play Mexican Train dominoes, or just sit and chat with a cup of coffee. We also have a pool table and ping pong available!

Eventually they will also be offering classes such as easy exercise, line dancing, sewing, women's and men's crafts and other activities that may interest you.

Questions? Please email the coordinators at

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*During weekdays, you must now "buzz in" to gain access to the building. Enter through the northwest doors, and the button will be on the wall to your right.*

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“Share a little Christmas!”

Thank you for sharing your time and treasure to provide Christmas gifts for the children at Chaddock Children’s Home in Quincy, IL. Together, we made a difference in the lives of 50 children!

Your generous and thoughtful actions represent God’s unconditional love of these children you don’t even know. Our whole Prospect United Methodist Church family is blessed by working together and sharing this giving challenge.

Thanks, Merry Christmas, good health and abundant blessings in the New Year from your Chaddock ambassadors and many helpers!

**Chaddock Deadline is THIS Sunday, December 2nd!**

Return your unwrapped gifts in a new duffle bag by this Sunday, December 2nd visibly labeled with the child’s name and cottage name.

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Working for Christ: ‘Tis the Season for Serving and here are a few opportunities to serve through our “Prospect Partners” in December:

Winter Coats & Accessories Needed!

If your family is anything like the Pichaske's, you found more unneeded coats, gloves, hats and scarves at your house in the days after our Salvation Army collection drive came to an end. But your cold weather items can still find a good home this winter. Dunlap Valley Middle School (DVMS) will be collecting new and gently used winter wear items through (at least) the end of the year. You may bring your items to the church and we'll take them to DVMS, or feel free to take your items directly to the school. DVMS will be passing most of the items on to students at Peoria's Quest and Lincoln schools.

Medical Team Ministry

Just a reminder: Prospect has canes, walkers, wheelchairs and other items available for our members and friends to borrow (following surgery, injuries, etc.). Contact the church office if you find yourself in need of such items.

And if you have similar items that you would like to donate, First UMC in downtown Peoria has a need for their Saturday Loaves and Fish/Medical Team Ministry. Contact the Prospect office if you have items you would like to donate to our sister church in Peoria.


Join us on Saturday, December 8th from 9:30-1:30 @ Peoria First UMC.

Loaves and Fish is a weekly feeding ministry providing a free hot meal, food pantry, worship service, educational assistance, clothing room & medical clinic to those in need each Saturday. Loaves & Fish serves from 250 - 375 guests weekly.

Holiday Food Baskets

We have been blessed with the opportunity to again offer holiday food baskets with ham, perishables and food staples for the holidays. We will prepare the food baskets after church on Sunday, December 9th-come join us!

Approximately 30 baskets will be distributed on Tuesday, December 11th and Thursday, December 13th from 9-11:00am. We need 3-4 helpers on both days. Let Gloria know when you can help!

If your team, small group or family would like to purchase an item for our baskets (ie: 30 cartons of eggs, 30 gallons of milk, ect.) contact the church office or contact Pastor Steve.

Salvation Army Bell Ringing Times

Prospect UMC will be ringing the bells in support of Salvation Army again this year. We have committed to serving on Friday, December 21st from 3:00-8:00 pm inside the food court entrance at Northwood’s Mall. Additional dates/times/locations for bell ringing are still available. Contact the church office if you would like to help coordinate another date/location!

South Side Mission Christmas Meal Delivery

South Side Mission will be delivering another Christmas blessing to the residents of Peoria's 61603 area code at Christmas. South Side Mission, "The Lighthouse on Laramie," is preparing 3500 Christmas meals for residents of the neighborhood. And they could use our help!

Volunteers are needed to help prepare the meals (the food will already be prepared...our volunteers will be part of the "assembly line" that gets the food and utensils into carry-out style containers) on Monday, December 23rd from 9:30-11:30 and delivering meals on Christmas morning beginning at 9:00. Prospect has committed to filling (at least) 10 slots on each day. If you would like to volunteer for either meal prep (24th) or meal delivery (25th), please contact Pastor Steve. There will also be a sign up sheet at the church.

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Human Relations Sunday

Human Relations Sunday—January 20, 2019


Turn on the news or drive around the outskirts of your town and you will find what Jesus called “the least of these.” Those living in the margins of society, struggling to survive. Over and over Jesus served people like this, embracing them. And that’s what we want to model as the people of The United Methodist Church. To continue the ministry of Jesus we established Human Relations Day as a Special Sunday that calls all of our churches to participate in helping all God’s children to realize their potential.

Your support this ministry helps us to continue nurturing at-risk youth, strengthening communities’ self-improvement efforts and advocating for the oppressed. Please give generously. Thank you!


Bandage Rolling is off in December! We will be rolling bandages for Global Health Ministries on January 16th and January 30th at the church at 3:30 pm. Global Health Ministries sends containers of medical supplies to mission hospitals all over the world. Please join us!!!

Hurricane Disaster Relief

If you would like to donate to this cause, please send/bring your checks to the church. Your checks should be made out to Prospect United Methodist Church with UMCOR # "901670" on the memo line.


We had a nice donation from the middle school. However, we’re still in need of the following items: Carrots, Peaches, Corn Muffin Mix, Cereal, Cereal/Granola Bars, Peanut Butter, Misc. Canned Pasta, Spaghetti & Meatballs & Paper Towels.

Thank you for your support! -Gloria & Nancy

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New Members and Baptism

We know how difficult it is to get everyone together on the same Sunday, so are excited to announce that we will work to welcome new members/schedule baptisms based on the best options for your family schedules. Please contact Pastor Steve (or the church office) if you are interested in learning more about membership and/or baptism (for yourself or your children).


Miss a Sunday?!

No problem! Our Sunday sermons are now posted on-line! You can find them on our website and Facebook page!

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"When you discover and use your gifts for the good of those you love and have chosen to serve, your life takes on beauty. It inspires others. It points toward the Creator." - Tom Patterson

May this holiday season be a blessing to all who give, and all who receive. May the sounds of the bells, organ, and voices fill us with cheer and point us to Jesus!

Bells rehearsal every Wednesday 6-7pm now until Christmas.

Choir rehearsal every Wednesday 7-8pm now until Christmas.

Winter Break (no bells or choir) December 25- January 1.

Cantata rehearsals:

December 5

December 12

Cantata Performance is Sunday, December 16th 8:45am Service!

-Kirsten (309-361-5200)


Dec 2: There is a Rose


Dec 9: Did you Hear the Good News?


Dec 16: CANTATA- The First Noel

Dec 19: Rehearsal

Dec 23: Celebrate the Dawn, Alleluia

Dec 24: Carol of the Little Angel/Peace, Peace


Dec 30: BREAK

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Our kids aren’t (or shouldn’t be) the only ones still in school. As a church that wants to help you grow deep in Jesus so that we can reach wide for Jesus, we believe that Bible study and small groups are essential for our individual and corporate lives. You can join at any time, there is always room for you!

KYLE SMALL GROUP at PUMC, 6:00PM every other Monday (12/10, 1/14 & 1/28), open invitation, CO-ED

CAMILLA SMALL GROUP, Wednesday evenings @ 7:00 PM - Camilla’s house, women's group, open invitation (will resume January 16th, 2019 at 7PM)

DEEPER STILL 10:00 Sunday mornings - Conference room, open invitation

PARENTING THROUGH THE STAGES 10:00 Sunday mornings - Currently meeting in our lower level, open invitation

BIBLE STUDIES: Breakfast with Jesus

Tuesday mornings from 8:30-9:30, open invitation (more details below)

(Feel free to contact the church if you're interested in starting/hosting a group at another time and/or location.)

Breakfast with Jesus

Next Study in the works, more information coming soon!


Thank you to all who helped with the lunch for Hanging of the Greens!

Our next meeting will be on December 3rd at 6:00 pm in the fellowship hall. Steve and Brenda Hanshaw of the Dunlap Senior Center will be our guest speakers. A light meal will be provided. We will also be meeting on January 7th, 2019 at 6:00pm in the fellowship hall .

Please consider joining us for our meetings and events. All are welcome-young and old!!! Enjoy the good food & company! If there are questions, let Perry Camp know @ 309-678-5767 or


Next Meeting: Monday, January 28th, 2019 at 7:00pm.

We chose the name Mary-Martha after we remembered the story in Luke 10: 38-42. Some of us in the group feel we’re like Martha moving from task to task. But we aim to be like Mary too, able to be still and learn from Jesus.

We give to ministries that include Crittenten, Lessie Bates Neighborhood House East St. Louis, Cunningham Children's home, Silent Auction, Chaddock Christmas Child, 100% of our funds are given to mission.

We welcome all ladies to join us!


The Prospect Book Discussion group is on winter break.

The next meeting will be at 6:30 p.m. in the Lounge on Monday, March 25, 2019, to discuss Can’t We Talk About Something More Pleasant? by Roz Chast. This book is the 2019 Peoria Reads selection. Community events connected to the book are scheduled February - April.

We will also meet at 6:30 p.m. on Monday, May 13, to talk about Educated: A Memoir by Tara Westover.

Questions? Suggestions for books to discuss? Contact Nancy Varness at 274-8124 or

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"My dear children, let's not just talk about love, let's practice real love" -1 John 3:18

Our Wednesday night small group of ladies just finished up reading "Love Does" by Bob Goff. In this book Bob speaks to the importance of doing & showing love over speaking & thinking about love. Bob doesn't have a magic answer telling one exactly how to get this accomplished, but he does stress the importance of building relationships with others and being available to other are key. One of the ways he makes himself available to others is to always answer his cell phone/ never sending anyone to voicemail. He stands by this so much that he put his cell phone number at the end of this book and stated if anyone wanted to chat with him or discuss something with him that he would be available & willing to speak to them. Somehow on our last night of the "Love Does" small group study I was "nominated" by my fellow small group sisters to try this out and give him a call to see if his money is where his mouth is or rather he DOES what he SAYS. After a few rings I took a deep breath relieved almost that I could just leave a voicemail stating that our small group enjoyed the book and just wanted to give him a call as the book states etc. but then...….. someone answered "Hello this is Bob" I truly was shocked and almost didn't know what to say I found myself questioning him and asking if it was really him. We continued with a brief conversation about how we enjoyed the book, appreciated his work and truth of really being available and ended the conversation with Bob telling us to make sure we write the stories of our lives down. None of us were exactly sure what he meant by this but I felt we could start by sharing this story with our church family. As leaders of the Congregational Care/ Reach team we want to spread this idea of being more available to each other and reaching out to each other and those in our community. As we head into this season of giving and celebrating the birth of our King let us try to focus on being available to DO & show the immeasurable love that came into being that starry night in a manger many years ago. Please feel free to come forward to either of us with your cares, concerns, or ideas and of course know that we are always at most a phone call away :) I can't promise we will be as on the ball as Bob was but we truly want our church family to have these relationships where the availability and love is endless. Peace and Blessings to everyone this Christmas & New Year! -Camilla Pietreniak

Upcoming Dates:

Sunday Jan 27,2019- Valentine Box collection starts and will continue through Sunday Feb 10, 2019

Sunday Feb 10, 2019- Congregational Care team will meet at noon in the fellowship hall to package up goodies and get ready to mail


With the kick-off of our second service, Soul Cafe now takes place in between services. Children receive their soul cafe treat in their Sunday school classroom. The soul cafe volunteers bring the treats and beverages to the Sunday school classrooms right before 1st service is ending. Interested in becoming a Soul cafe volunteer? Don't worry, Camilla & Mary will be available to help with this for the first several weeks!


We are also in the works of getting home communion up and going. Please see Mary Pietreniak if you are interested in serving or receiving in this ministry.

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We would like to thank the congregation for all the prayers, phone calls and cards during Melanie's recovery from hip surgery.

Thanks so much, Gary & Melanie Hoadley


Thank you to all the people who helped with the funeral dinner for Nelda. It was all very good!! We all really appreciate your kindness.

-The Family of Nelda Lalicker


Thank you for the cards and visits during our Mother's hospitalization. They definitely brightened her day.

-Harriet Maher's daughters


I would also like to place a note of Thanks and Praise for my mother (Mary Pietreniak's) successful surgery that just occurred and thanks to everyone for their prayers, texts, cards, & concern for her and our family. POP POP POP (Power of Prayer) is REAL :) -Camilla
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2018 Turkey Dinner

We thank you, our church family, for all you have done to make the turkey dinner a successful community event. There are so many aspects in putting this event together and it starts four months in advance. We are so thankful and grateful for your many helping hands, time commitments, hard work, prayers, donations(turkey sponsors and other items), and most of all God’s blessings. PUMC is blessed to have such a congregation that is so generous and committed to helping when needed. No task, whether big or small, goes unnoticed. Blessings to all of you! You are the greatest!

The 2018 Turkey Dinner was another successful event. We served 700 guests (192 of those were carryout). We netted $7,695 (after expenses). Of the $7,695, $885 were donations.


A Silent Auction THANK YOU!!!!!

Thank you PUMC for an EXCELLENT Silent Auction!

The Silent Auction Committee gives a big thanks to our PUMC family for helping make the Silent Auction a successful event on Nov 3. The evening was full of fun and bidding on items that were generously donated by our church members as well as local businesses. All proceeds of the auction will be used toward our mission opportunities. Thanks to all of you that donated, supported, and bid. See ya next year!!!

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Youth News

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Hey Prospect!

We’re working towards trying to get our students from being disciples to ministers at their schools. We are doing this with intentional discipleship, as we are going through the book “In The Name of Jesus” by Henri Nouwen. This book deals with what it’s like to be Christian leaders and intentional followers of Jesus, as well as why life with Christ is worthwhile. Please be praying for our students and leaders as we travel through this book together!

As for Fuel Sunday mornings, we are going through the book of Acts. Please pray for our students as we continue to learn about what it could mean to live the adventure that having a life in Christ entails.

Would you be interested in helping students learning to be more like Christ? If you are interested in becoming a disciple-maker of students to follow Jesus, please give Evan a text or call at 309-258-9917!

For Christmas, we’ll be going to serve at Loaves and Fish at FUMC Downtown Peoria on December 8, from 9:30am to 1:30pm. Please let Evan know if you would like to come help!

Our annual Fuel Christmas Party will be on December 16th! Be praying for an awesome time of games, fun, and for students who may be hearing the Christmas story for the first time!

As for January, we will be continuing through Acts on Sunday mornings, we well as talking about resolutions for our faith on Sunday nights. Please be praying for students to think critically on how to grow their faith deeper!

Thanks and God Bless! Evan Penn


Sunday morning Bible Study at 9:45am

December 8th - Loaves & Fish from 9:30-1:30

December 16th - FUEL Christmas Party from 5:00-7:30pm

January 27th - FUEL from 5:00-7:30pm

Children's Ministry NEWS

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Prospect Kids Christmas Party: Sunday, December 9th

Kids-join us for an amazing party full of games, crafts, snacks and last but not least, "Happy Birthday, Jesus" cupcakes!!! The party will be held during Kingdom Quest at 10:00am on Sunday, December 9th.


The Purple Panda staff is busily preparing for the second half of the school year. We are so thrilled with the progress our children are making at preschool. It’s so rewarding to watch them grow and change as they are learning. Christmas songs and crafts are on our agenda for December! Our preschool students will be having their Christmas music program on Thursday, December 13 at 6:30 pm in the sanctuary with refreshments afterwards. Our Pre-K class is currently full with 20 students, but our Panda 3’s class has some openings in our 2 day class at this writing. Registration for preschool for the 2019-20 school year will begin in February.

Please contact me through Dani in the Church Office at 243-7300 or e-mail me at if you have any questions or you would like a tour or if you are interested in enrolling a child in preschool. Nikki Pollard—Director, Purple Panda Preschool

After Care is also in full force, but we will still take applications for new students. Contact Dani if you would like to register your child for after care!

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Right Now Ministry (online small group and devotional resources)

Prospect subscribes to the RightNowMinistry (“the Netflix of Christian Bible study”) resource, which provides all of our members with access to 1000’s of video led curriculums including offerings specifically geared towards books of the Bible, Parenting, Marriage, Single Living, Men, Women, Teens, Children, Leadership and Finances from a Christian perspective, and more.

Contact Pastor Steve if you do not have access to the site (or have forgotten your log-in).


Click the link below to download the 52-week Bible reading plan!

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Prospect UMC

Lifting Up Christ; Looking In to meet one another’s spiritual and physical needs; Reaching Out to love and serve others.
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