January 2023 Newsletter


Grand Valley United Methodist Church
January 2023 Newsletter



In this newsletter:
1. From the Pastor
2. Stewardship
3. New Faith House sign
4. Bible Study
5. Mefors’ Newsletter
6. Birthdays
7. Calendar
8. Event Details
9. Church Reports
10. Just for Fun


From the Pastor….

The fruit of Silence is Prayer,
The fruit of Prayer is Faith,
The fruit of Faith is Love,
The fruit of Love is Service,
The fruit of Service is Peace,
–Mother Teresa

I read this devotion and thought that I needed to share its message.

Read I John 3:11-18

At the end of World War II, an American soldier was walking back to his barracks near war-torn London. The morning was chilly, and all around him was the aftermath of recent bombings: skeletons of once-proud buildings, craters lining highways to destroyed homes and villages. But nowhere were the ravages more visible than in the faces of the children.

Turning a corner, the soldier spotted a small boy standing with his nose pressed against the window of a bakery shop. He walked up to the shop in time to hear the child give a slight groan as the baker took a tray of piping-hot doughnuts from the oven and placed them on the counter to cool.
“Would you like some of those?” the soldier asked.
“Yeah, I would” the child answered, startled by the question.
The soldier stepped inside the bakery, bought a dozen doughnuts, gave them to the boy waiting in the cold, foggy morning, and turned to walk on.

Suddenly he felt a small hand tugging at his coat. Looking down, he heard the child ask wonderingly, “Mister, are you God?”

We are never more like God than when we are giving. How exciting it is to know that, for the price of a dozen doughnuts or a hot meal, warm boots, vitamins, or a village cow, some nails and boards to build a school, or even a single carton of milk, we can become God’s arms and legs, God’s presence, for someone starving for that assurance. We can become the link between someone’s prayer and God’s answer to it.


Due to a printer’s delay, the Stewardship packet has not been sent out at this writing. We apologize for this. They should be sent out in the next couple of weeks, so keep an eye out for them. Once you receive them, please give thought to increasing your pledge for 2023.

Thank you, and Merry Christmas!


Happy New Year! One of the things I do every January is check to see if my records need updating.

If you would like to make any changes to how you receive your newsletter, please let me know:
– If you are getting a hard copy and would like to change to getting an email copy, please send me an email ([email protected]) with the email you would like it sent to.
– If you are getting a copy by email and would prefer a hard copy, please send me an email.
– If you prefer to no longer receive the newsletter, please send me an email.

Thank you!


On December 21st, the Faith House got a much needed new sign to replace the old one that was faded and cracked. Thank you, Trustees, for taking care of this!


Beginning January 4th, we will be starting a new Bible Study: Prayer – the Great Adventure. This study explores the pattern of prayer Jesus gave His disciples and examines how we can follow that outline and put it into practice in our lives. You are all invited to join us each Wednesday at 10:00 a.m. or 6:30 p.m.


Newsletter D. 22
Mutambara Mission Hospital
Cashel Road Nhedziwa, Chimanimani
[email protected];[email protected]

Dear Brothers and Sisters,
We send you greetings from Zimbabwe in the name of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. We do hope that you are all doing well with your families. We sure thank God for his mercies and favours on all of us and for seeing us through to this last quarter of 2022.
We say goodbye to the cold winter season of the year and welcome the Rains and the planting season. People are making all necessary efforts to complete cultivation and planting this time around and for us in Mutambara Mission Hospital, we are not left out either. We continue to work towards Sustainability and hoping to achieve food sufficiency and animal production both for the feeding of the Pregnant women in our Waiting Mothers Shelter and for other patients on admission.

In the last newsletter we showed an expectant pig. Below are its 7 piglets.

We thank you for your prayers. God’s Mercies and Favours have been speaking for us as we are much better health wise than previously. We had scheduled to be on Vacation from December 1, 2022 but we got our scheduled Wellness program to commence some ten days earlier. We shall therefore depart Zimbabwe for the Wellness in the USA. We pray everything goes well. We shall use that opportunity to visit our children and grandchildren during the Christmas before returning to Zimbabwe via Nigeria in January 2023.
Prayer Requests:
1. Safe travels during this period to the USA, Nigeria and back to Zimbabwe.
2. God to take control of the Wellness schedule and procedures.
3. World peace especially in the troubled spots all over the World.
4. Our daughter, Anulika for a success final Semester in her Masters’ Program.
We continue to pray and solicit for your continued support which has been since long ago. As we look forward to our retirement in the next two years, we shall need your support more than ever in this transition period in order to complete all outstanding projects. Thank you for the past and for the more you will do. We wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving for those in the USA and Happy Christmas to everyone all over the word.
Florence Mefor, Advance # 13991Z, Emmanuel Mefor, Advance # 13390Z
Mutambara Mission Hospital Advance # 3022286.


January birthdays:
12 – Kody Largent
21 – Anita Elliott-Hodgden
21 – Don Ives
21 – Tim Largent Jr


Our Seekers Class(Adult Sunday School) meets every Sunday morning at 8:30. We invite all to attend.

Join us for Bible Study every Wednesday at 10:00 a.m. or at 6:30 p.m. in the Fellowship Hall. We hope you can join us.

Choir practices on Wednesday afternoons at 4:00. Unfortunately, Bells are not meeting at this time.. We are always looking for participants, so if you would like to join either of these wonderful musical groups, please contact the office at (970)285-9892 or by email: [email protected]

Prayer Partners meet the 1st and 3rd Thursdays at 10:00. If you have anyone that you would like to add to the Prayer Partner list, please contact either Bert Botkin at (970)216-8682, the church office at (970)285-9892 or send an email to: [email protected]

Church Council Report
No report

Mission & Outreach
No report

No report

New Year’s Facts

What does “Auld Lang Syne” mean, and why do we sing the song at midnight on New Year’s Eve?
“Auld Lang Syne,” the title of a Scottish folk song that many English speakers sing at the stroke of midnight on New Year’s Eve, roughly translates to “days gone by.” The poet Robert Burns is credited with transcribing, adapting and partially rewriting it in the late 18th century. Its lyrics, which rhetorically ask whether “auld acquaintance” should “be forgot,” have been interpreted as a call to remember friends and experiences from the past.

Though sung on New Year’s Eve since the mid-19th century, it became firmly cemented as a holiday standard when Guy Lombardo and the Royal Canadians played it during a radio broadcast from New York’s Roosevelt Hotel at midnight on December 31, 1929. The band went on to perform the hit every year until 1976, and loudspeakers continue to blast their rendition after the annual ball drop in Times Square.

Who were the first to make resolutions for the new year?
People have been pledging to change their ways in the new year—whether by getting in shape, quitting a bad habit or learning a skill—for an estimated 4,000 years now. The tradition is thought to have first caught on among the ancient Babylonians, who made promises in order to earn the favor of the gods and start the year off on the right foot. (They would reportedly vow to pay off debts and return borrowed farm equipment.)

The age-old custom of breaking one’s newly formed resolutions within several months—a fate that befalls the majority of would-be reformers, according to statistics—probably originated shortly thereafter.

When was the first New Year’s Eve ball dropped in New York’s Times Square?
An estimated 1 billion people around the world watch each year as a brightly lit ball descends down a pole atop the One Times Square building at midnight on New Year’s Eve. The world-famous celebration dates back to 1904, when the New York Times newspaper relocated to what was then known as Longacre Square and convinced the city to rename the neighborhood in its honor. At the end of the year, the publication’s owner threw a raucous party with an elaborate fireworks display.

When the city banned fireworks in 1907, an electrician devised a wood-and-iron ball that weighed 700 pounds, was illuminated with 100 light bulbs and was dropped from a flagpole at midnight on New Year’s Eve. Lowered almost every year since then, the iconic orb has undergone several upgrades over the decades and now weighs in at nearly 12,000 pounds. In more recent years, various towns and cities across America have developed their own versions of the Times Square ritual, organizing public drops of items ranging from pickles (Dillsburg, Pennsylvania) to possums (Tallapoosa, Georgia) at midnight on New Year’s Eve.

Who made January 1 the first of the year?
Throughout antiquity, civilizations around the world developed increasingly sophisticated calendars, typically pinning the first day of the year to an agricultural or astronomical event. In Egypt, for instance, the year began with the annual flooding of the Nile, which coincided with the rising of the star Sirius. The first day of the Chinese New Year, meanwhile, occurred with the second new moon after the winter solstice.

In ancient Rome, the original calendar consisted of 10 months and 304 days, with each new year beginning at the vernal equinox; according to tradition, it was created by Romulus, the founder of Rome, in the eighth century B.C.

Over the centuries, the calendar fell out of sync with the sun, and in 46 B.C. Julius Caesar decided to solve the problem by consulting with the most prominent astronomers and mathematicians of his time. He introduced the Julian calendar, which closely resembles the more modern Gregorian calendar that most countries around the world use today. As part of his reform, Caesar established January 1 as the first day of the year, partly to honor the month’s namesake: Janus, the Roman god of beginnings, whose two faces allowed him to look back into the past and forward into the future.

In medieval Europe, Christian leaders replaced January 1 as the first of the year with days carrying more religious significance, such as December 25 (the anniversary of Jesus’ birth) and March 25 (the Feast of the Annunciation). Pope Gregory XIII reestablished January 1 as New Year’s Day in 1582.

What are some traditional New Year’s foods?
At New Year’s Eve parties and celebrations around the world, revelers enjoy meals and snacks thought to bestow good luck for the coming year. In Spain and several other Spanish-speaking countries, people bolt down a dozen grapes—symbolizing their hopes for the months ahead—right before midnight. In many parts of the world, traditional New Year’s dishes feature legumes, which are thought to resemble coins and herald future financial success; examples include lentils in Italy and black-eyed peas in the southern United States.

Because pigs represent progress and prosperity in some cultures, pork appears on the New Year’s Eve table in Cuba, Austria, Hungary, Portugal and other countries. Ring-shaped cakes and pastries, a sign that the year has come full circle, round out the feast in the Netherlands, Mexico, Greece and elsewhere. In Sweden and Norway, meanwhile, rice pudding with an almond hidden inside is served on New Year’s Eve; it is said that whoever finds the nut can expect 12 months of good fortune.


Church Contact Information

PO Box 125
Parachute CO 81635
[email protected]

Wednesday – Friday
9:00 – noon