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What happened in 2013?
3 football parties with great friends, food, and fun! Of course, watching the Oregon Ducks dominate K-State was the highlight! Men's Camp was amazing for the 5 of us who attended. Daren Lindley brought practical and life-changing words to us. Easter weekend included donating 600 stuffed eggs for the Community Egg Hunt and giving out hot chocolate, coffee and cookies to the multitudes who attended. We were happy to have a snow-free day for this event! Pastor Kevin Lambert spoke at the Sunrise Service and did a great job encouraging us with God's word. The Easter Breakfast overflowed with about 140 people joining us for food and friendship. Other ministry continued with a 5th Sunday Sing at CLC, Community Men's Breakfasts, Kids Praise Team ministry, participation in a Pinewood Derby, and helping with Senior Meals. We also took a group through Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace University, resulting in thousands of dollars in savings and debt payoff.
Summer was the usual busy season, with camps, campouts, picnics, a water baptism, outdoor church, Church in the Park with the Kate White Band, guest missionaries, vacations, and more! In the Fall we had an African missions meal with Chuck Wilson, a well-attended annual Thanksgiving Dinner, and some good Eastern Oregon hunting. The year closed with Christmas gratitude to our Savior, generous participation in the Christmas Food Box giveaway in our community, and a New Year's Eve party as a finale for 2013.
God is so good, and we will continue to seek to be part of what He is doing in our community and around the world!
We enjoyed gathering in January to watch the college football championship game (BCS), even though the Ducks did not pull it off. We joined with other local churches to sponsor the movie Courageous to be shown multiple times at our local theater (Elgin Opera House), and it was a great success! Our February Superbowl Party and Valentine's Banquet were also successful events enjoyed by all attendees. Men's Retreat was enriching as we received from the Lord and encouraged one another. Boyd & Sally Powers came and ministered powerfully in April. We also started the sheetrock workdays in April with several A/G churches sending men to help us! We partnered with other local churches to offer a Baccalaureate Dinner to the graduates of Elgin and Imbler High Schools. Imbler Alumnus Chuck Beickel spoke and challenged the grads to do life with the Giver of Life.
Numerous other events have transpired through August 2012: Church Dinners, Men's Breakfasts, our first Mega Sports Camp (VBS), Teen Camp, Kids Camp, CLC Stampede Parade BBQ, Ranger Greg Lonewolf, Annual CLC Picnic, funerals, weddings, and a much needed vacation. We give God all the credit for the good things He is doing in and through His church.
In the Fall, work continued on the Youth & Children's Center. Richard Bergey came from Albany to install door trim and handrails. Excellent work! We are grateful! Our annual Thanksgiving Dinner was combined with an Open House to celebrate the near completion of the upstairs. Nearly 100 people came and enjoyed a delicious meal and toured the upstairs. We joined with other Elgin churches to bless needy families with Christmas Dinner fixings including frozen turkeys. Our children did an outstanding job retelling the Christmas story at our Annual Christmas Program. A good year with many blessings!
What happened at CLC in 2011?
July through December... months filled with God's grace and blessing! Our BBQ outreach went well at the Stampede Parade, followed by VBS, Teen and Kids Camps, guests, Evangelists David & Loretta Hoole, and a 5th Sunday Sing and BBQ at the Methodist Church. Jon & Carolyn Stewart hosted an Indonesian Dinner in August and we enjoyed Church in the Park with the other churches in our community. We finally received our building permit in September and began putting down the floor for the Youth and Children's Center upstairs. A crew from Albany First A/G came in October and framed it up in 2 days. We had the opportunity to share at their Missions Convention about the vision God has given us for our community, and they also blessed us with a generous offering. HVAC rough ins were completed over the next few months, along with the fire sprinkler installation. Our Annual Thanksgiving Meal was well attended, and the kids put on a Christmas program to wrap the year up. God has been with us every moment of 2011!
John and Becci Rodli shared their ministry with us in early June. They are missionaries to the Azores Islands, Portugal and are reaching a very needy people group there. The remainder of the Summer was very busy with outdoor church and free BBQ at the Stampede Parade; Community VBS; Annual Church Picnic and Water Baptism at Walker's Pond; Teen and Kids Camps; Guest Evangelists David and Loretta Hoole; An Indonesian Dinner with Missionaries John and Carolyn Stewart; Church in the Park; and some time away for Pastor and his family.
Pastor Bill Wilson, Lead Pastor of the Oregon Ministry Network, visited us in May and led us in the dedication of baby Noelle Opperman to the Lord. He also brought a message of hope and inspiration. Rich and Rachel Zinzer led the way in providing a Baccalaureate Dinner for Graduates. Alex James came and shared his musical abilities and challenged the graduates to be people of faith as they step out into the world.
April started with the Oregon Ministry Network Summit in Salem. Pastor and Robin received great instruction and encouragement from these sessions. Wayne and Mary Treat joined their lives in holy matrimony on April 16. We participated in a prayer emphasis along with other local churches as part of a joint effort from the Elgin Ministerial Association. Pastor began coaching Little League baseball and had the opportunity to speak to the Scouts and help them earn their faith badge.
The Leadership Team attended the March Leadership Development Cohorts in La Grande to help sharpen our vision and refine our purposes here in our community. Linda and Rocky Lanier visited us, offering a Patriotic Concert, complete with a flag ceremony from the National Guard. We journeyed through the book, One Month to Live, along with several other local churches, seeking to maximize the time and opportunities God has given us on this earth. Pastor and his family were able to get away for Spring Break in McCall, ID. Beautiful!
The Ladies kicked February off with a Ladies' Night Out, which also marked the beginning of a Ladies' Study that lasted through April. Our annual Superbowl Party and Valentine's Banquet were big hits again this year!
January brought a fresh start with new challenges. On January 2, longtime member Myrtle Moodenbaugh went to be with Jesus after a yearlong battle with cancer. (Her daughter-in-law, Karen Elkins passed away on January 1.) In the midst of grief and heartache, friends and family were able to gather and celebrate a life of loving service to God and others. On January 15 Pastor Mark's brother, David Opperman, passed away suddenly. At least three deaths occurred around this time in the extended families of CLC attenders. While several of us are grieving, we are not without hope and are trusting God to carry us through.
Other more enjoyable events in January included watching the College Football Championship Game on the BIG screen, while hanging out with one another; Attending Leadership Development Cohorts; welcoming Rachel Zinzer to our church family; receiving the meaningful ministry of Pastor Larry and Jackie Savage; sharing a Church Dinner together; serving Senior Meals; Hosting a Men's Breakfast and a 5th Sunday Sing for our greater Church family; and, Pastor and Robin attending Network Intermission in Seaside. God is still working effectively at CLC!
December was another month of serving and giving as God enabled us. Marjorie Savage led the way by coordinating help for Senior Meals at the Community Center. Several people donated food, money and time to help the Ministerial Association offer Christmas Food Boxes to several needy families from our community. Again, we joined our greater church family in Elgin at the Christian Church for Sounds & Tastes of Christmas, a time of sharing in music, word, food, and fellowship. Ruth Uhrig helped lead our kids and teens in presenting a Christmas program at CLC. 2010 was a year of growth and increased opportunity to share the love of Jesus with those around us.
November included a Singspiration at Elgin United Methodist Church where we gathered with our greater church family and worshiped and fellowshipped together. We hosted our annual Thanksgiving Dinner at CLC, welcoming more than 80 people into a warm, safe, friendly place to love and be loved. In addition to hosting another Community Men's Breakfast, we helped Rich Zinzer sponsor a Thanksgiving Day meal at the Community Center, where Marianne Zinzer prepared a full delicious spread. God's amazing love was shared with several that day!
Comedy Couple Amy Barnes and Jerry Miner kicked off October for us with two shows at the Elgin Opera House. This event was sponsored by the Ministerial Association and could not have been pulled off without much assistance from Rich Zinzer. CLC threw baby showers for two new babies. We welcomed Noelle Elisabeth Opperman into this world on Oct. 19. Connor James Trimble joined the CLC family on Oct. 25. Chi Alpha Missionary Russ Chambers came and shared his ministry to the OSU campus at the end of the month.
September included the monthly Church Dinner and Men's Breakfast, providing opportunities for fellowship and relationship building - along with some great food! A lot of groundwork was done in preparation for a Comedy tour Outreach.
The highlight of August was the Community Gathering for Church in the Park and BBQ. This was in conjunction with the Annual Answer the Call Biker Rally led by the Nazarene Church and sponsored by the Ministerial Association. CLC and some of the Community Men's group provided a free breakfast open to everyone during this weekend. Pastor Mark and his family were also able to spend some much needed time away in Missouri.
Our annual Free BBQ in July at the Stampede Parade was preceded by an "off-premises" worship service in the Community Bank parking lot. Several indicated that they enjoyed doing church outside the box. We also enjoyed a church picnic out at the Walker's Pond, followed by two weeks of camps (Kids & Teens). Campus Missionary Wes Sheley came and shared his ministry with us, inviting us to support him in any way we can.
June again was quite rainy and filled with VBS prep and other activities. Vacation Bible School was a community effort based on the theme of "Heroes" where each kid was challenged to be a hero for God. We learned that Heroes do the unexpected, take action, step out on faith, save the day, and stand for truth. On the heels of VBS was our 70th Anniversary Celebration for CLC (1940-2010). Pastor Dean Antonucci & family came from Heppner to cater Friday night's meal. A wonderful concert followed by the King's Witnesses. Pastors David and Diane Abercrombie traveled all the way from Drain, Oregon, to be with us for the entire weekend. David poured himself into the building while he was here in the early 1990's. Our Assistant Network Superintendent, Lee McCloud, joined the celebration and shared a message of hope and vision on Sunday. We wrapped up the celebration with a delicious potluck. As June wrapped up, the final touches were put on the house at 1291 Alder, which CLC purchased and will be renting out. God is leading us forward!
May brought lots of rain, a church dinner, and a Men's Breakfast, where Butch Arbogast shared some of his poetry. He truly has a God-given gift in this area. The teachers and leadership team traveled to Hermiston A/G for T.E.A.M. (Together Everyone Achieves More) Training, and enjoyed being encouraged and challenged with new ministry ideas. Our Next Generation Pastor, Brian Eno, from the Oregon Ministry Network came and ministered to us via Sunday School feedback and an encouraging message. The month ended with a 5th Sunday Sing at Elgin Baptist Church, bidding farewell to Pastor Kurt & Melissa Lenhoff as they transition to Vancouver, WA.
Easter Sunday was in April and was filled with several opportunities for worship and fellowship. A Community Sunrise Service was held at 7AM at the Opera House, and a delicious Community Easter Breakfast was offered here at CLC. Curtis Mattson spoke at our Men's Breakfast, and Pastor Mark kicked off his Tee-Ball coaching career.
March included a Church Dinner filled with friendship and great food, a Men's Breakfast, where George Kraus shared the need for accountability and spiritual disciplines, and Missionary Tamara Henkes shared what God has been doing in Romania during her 4-year stay there. We also began planning in earnest for the 70-Year Anniversary Celebration for Christian Life Center, June 18-20.
February brought us a Superbowl Party on the big screen here at CLC, along with a fun, well-attended Valentine's Banquet. We enjoyed a Men's Breakfast, hearing some history from Bob Wiles, and a testimony of God's healing power from Gerald Hopkins. Six of us men drove up to Camp Elkanah for the first evening of Men's Retreat and enjoyed a great meal together - and we even ate food! Pastor Bill Wilson shared a great, down-to-earth message of encouragement and challenge.
We started January by shaving Pastor Mark's head for BGMC! What a fun day! We enjoyed a BCS playoff party for the young at heart and/or mind. Several men joined us for a Men's Breakfast, where we built friendships and planned a joint relief offering for the earthquake victims in Haiti. We had a church dinner and annual meeting, looking back at 2009 and ahead to 2010, trusting God to lead us and increase His impact through our lives. The month ended with 3 events: a Youth Winter Camp at Meadowood Springs, where Daren Lindley shared some powerful truth and the kids enjoyed themselves in the snow; Pastor Larry Savage came and ministered to us from God's Word; and a 5th Sunday Sing at St. Mary's Catholic Church where local believers gathered for worship and fellowship.
Looking Back at 2009
December was a month to celebrate life. Joe McKenna, one of our family members, passed away. He will be missed. Other celebrations included Sounds and Tastes of Christmas at Elgin Christian Church, Open House at the Opperman’s, a Men’s Breakfast, and a Christmas program put together by Janet Coles. As part of the Elgin Ministerial Association, we helped provide Christmas Food Boxes for 60 families, representing over 150 people. A BIG win was going over the top in our BGMC giving with over $1,100, which cost me dearly. Hair grows back.
The highlight of November was the Thanksgiving Dinner, with 80 friends and family members celebrating God’s provision together. The men enjoyed it so much they came back the next morning for a Men’s Breakfast, which has grown to about 20 men from various churches.
October's highlights included taking 9 teens to Youth Convention, hearing from Rob and Corrine Gerig as they prepare to minister in Guyana, enjoying biscuits & gravy at the Men's Breakfast, and joining with our extended church family at the Nazarene Church for worship and fellowship.
In September we began to pursue an opportunity to purchase the property adjacent to the church on the southeast corner. We are excited about the future possibilities this property may offer in the way of a playground, staff housing, or other use. We also began exploring loan possibilities so we can finish the Youth and Children's Center in the upstairs portion of the church.
The big highlight of August was church in the park on the 4th Sunday. Officially named Answer the Call it was a great time of worship, testimonies, friendship, a picnic, and free swimming for all, compliments of the Elgin Ministerial Association. A unique 2-day VBS was also part of this weekend and several churches joined forces to offer this ministry to the kids of our community.
July was summer camp month with a week of Kids Camp and a week of Teen Camp at Camp Elkanah. Garland Owensby shared powerful messages at Teen Camp and several lives were impacted in a positive way for Jesus. Kids Camp was also a very pivotal experience in the spiritual growth of some of our kids. During the Stampede Parade we gave away 250 hot dogs or so and met several nice people. We also had a family picnic and water baptism at Walker's Pond, enjoying swimming and friendship, along with good eats.
June brought the conclusion of the school year and ushered in a busy summer. The month was filled with 2 weddings and a funeral, along with a Worship Conference and unforgettable vacation time for Pastor Mark and his family.
Pastor Mark and Steve Oliver had an opportunity to perform in the local musical, Annie, at the historic Elgin Opera House. Steve played FDR, and Mark was his Secretary of State, Cordell Hull. It was a stretching month with 12 performances and other practices, but new friendships were formed and we became better acquainted with our community. We also fit in a church workday, a Baccalaureate for graduating seniors, and a 5th Sunday Sing at Elgin Baptist Church.
In April we celebrated the resurrection of Jesus with a "Sonrise" service at the Elgin Opera House, a breakfast at CLC for the entire community, and an exciting time of worship and connecting with God in our Easter service. A couple came and shared about their teaching opportunities in China, and we hosted a benefit concert for Ashton Johnston, as Sons of Day came and jammed for Jesus.
March brought longer days and a break from all the snow. We began purchasing lumber and plywood for the upstairs construction, and received a visit from Charles Parker, a former CLC Pastor who has been very helpful in the planning phase of the upstairs renovation. Pastor Mark offered prayer and Robin provided music at the local Chamber of Commerce banquet. We ended the month with a 5th Sunday Sing at St. Mary's Catholic Church.
February was packed full of exciting events! We had a Superbowl Party, Membership Luncheon, Valentine's Banquet, CLC Youth Retreat with Tom Bachman, and a Men's Retreat at Camp Elkanah. We also had Teen Challenge visit from the Tri-Cities, hearing several testimonies and a message from Jesse Campos. Former CLC Pastor John Barnhart came and ministered to us one Sunday morning. Pastor Larry Savage also came and shared with the church family while Pastor Mark was away at Men's Retreat. We also had the fire escape door installed in the southeast corner of the upstairs.
January brought loads of snow, much to the delight of some, and to the chagrin of others. We held a BCS playoff party, watching Florida overcome Oklahoma to claim the championship. Wes Sheley came and shared his ministry with Campus Missions with us. Pastor Mark and Robin went to Seaside for Network Intermission and took in Generation Unleashed at City Bible Church in Portland on their way back. We also installed an exterior steel staircase as an access to and from the upstairs. Kurt Irwin did an amazing job building it.
December found us celebrating the entrance of the Son of God, Jesus (Yeshua), into this world as a human being. God became one of us so we could join our lives with Him and live forever! It was a crazy month for snow, postponing our Christmas program twice. We joined with the Elgin Ministerial Association in providing Christmas turkeys and dinner fixings to almost 60 families in our community and help a few others in need. We held a Sweet 16 Ceremony (like a Qinceanera) for Ana and performed the wedding of Alberto and Cheri Zuniga. Lots of fun and lots of snow! We anticipate greater times of refreshing in God's presence in 2009!
November gave us plenty to give thanks for. We were blessed by the ministry of Chuck & Janet Wilson (Botswana), and Lee & Cindy McCloud (Asst. Superintendent of the Oregon Ministry Network). Election day came and went surrounded by much prayer and encouragement to draw near to God and trust Him with our future. One of our favorite annual events is our Thanksgiving Dinner. About 100 people joined us this year for a time of great food and friendship.
Country singer, Linda Lanier, came and ministered to our community in October with a concert and a God, Family, Country Rally during which several of our veterans were honored. We took some of our valuable teens to Salem for a dynamic Youth Convention (intense worship with Jeff Deyo). Several church family members and friends joined together for a Harvest Party near the end of the month and had a great time together.
September began with new colors on the church building. The Building Enhancement Team proposed a Promenade green with Grasshopper wing green on the columns. The new look is a welcome change! We kicked off a weekly Youth Nite with a pizza party to encourage teens in their faith. What an awesome bunch of teens! Missionary Candidates Daren and Heidi Walker shared their vision for Mexico with us. We finished up the month with a Community Praise gathering at CLC.
We packed as much as possible into the month of August! Several local churches joined together for a week of Vacation Bible School in God's Big Backyard. Missionary Ryan Thomas blessed and challenged us as he reported on his ministry in Mexico. A group of Royal Rangers from around the state came and blessed us by serving our church and community. Pastor Vance (former Elginite) and Katie Lindstrom led the charge with sweet spirits of service and love for us and the people of Elgin. The Rangers put on a Survival School and a Back-to-School party with giant inflatables for kids to play on. We joined forces with the other local churches on Sunday for a worship service in the park, free BBQ, free family swim, and a free concert from Byword. It was a tremendous weekend filled with sharing the love of God. The Rangers also helped scrape our church building in preparation for a new paint job by Calvin Cathey and Final Touch Painting. Last and probably least, archery season began. May the Lord be merciful and bless Pastor Mark with a big bull elk!
July was action-packed as Missionary Melinda Koehler ministered faith and healing to us. Our part in the Elgin Stampede was holding a free BBQ during the Sunday parade at the Community Bank parking lot. A great week of teen camp followed as we sent 6 teens to Camp Elkanah to encounter the grace and power of God. We came home long enough to have a Water Baptism/Church Picnic out at Walker's pond and recreation area. The kids (young and older alike) had great fun swimming, zip dipping, and boating - besides all the good food we enjoyed together. Next we headed back to Camp Elkanah with 4 kids and 2 teen helpers for a week of Kids Camp. What a great time of getting to know Jesus better! The church family grieved together with Marge and Sundae at the death of son and brother, Jess. What would we do without the grace and loving care of our God?!
We kicked off summer in June with a Polish Potluck. Missionaries Dennis and Diane Holcomb prepared a delicious Kilbasa zupa and gave us an update on their ministry in Poland. We grieved with a dear widow (Julia) whose only son, Ben, passed away. Her faith and love are an inspiration for many. Riverfest weekend in Elgin brought a wedding, car show, quilt show at CLC, and Father's Day - busy weekend, but fulfilling. Pastor Mark and his family disappeared to Missouri for two wonderful weeks of R&R.
May brought our annual Light for the Lost banquet which was in Baker City. We enjoyed hearing what God is doing around the world through printed Christian literature. Missionaries David and Dorothy Yanuba also came and challenged us to join with God's purpose in reaching this world with the good news about Jesus.
In April we hosted a Seder Meal with Missionary Tom Weinraub from Jews for Jesus. Tom also shared at the Elgin Opera House about what God is doing in Israel and among Jewish people. Very inspiring! We ended the month by attending a Worship Seminar in Hermiston and hearing from Missionary Kathy Jingling who inspired us to think outside the box and let God use us in unique and creative ways.
March brought our annual Church Meeting where we shared vision and insight into the direction God is leading us here at Christian Life Center. He has been shaping us and preparing us to reach young families, teens, and kids and it is time for us to step up and get involved. Easter was an enjoyable time of worship and fellowship with other churches as we gathered for a "Sonrise" service, breakfast, and ministry at our respective locations.
February brought an exciting Superbowl Party as we gathered in the Family Center (Abby Hall) for a fun time together. Another highlight of the month was our Valentine's Banquet. It was well attended and filled with great food, fun, and laughter. We also wrapped up our Leadership Development Cohorts this month. It has been a good process, with many challenges. Now we are attempting to put the things we've learned into practice.
January came with plenty of snow. We enjoyed an NCAA Football Championship party, watching LSU pull off the win. Evangelist Daren Lindley came and ministered to us, providing encouragement and a challenge as we prepare to distribute our book of personal stories to our community. We decided to invest for 3 years in purchasing and distributing these books to our community. We believe they will provide hope and answers to people who recognize that they have a need beyond themselves.
A BACKWARDS LOOK AT 2007
December was a typically busy month, but filled with love, laughter, and togetherness. After a very frigid Light Parade, we joined the area churches for The Sounds & Tastes of Christmas at the Elgin Christian Church. There was music, encouragement, and plenty of delicious food to go along with the fellowship. Jamie DeWees came from OSU to share his burden for college students and highlight the Chi Alpha ministry. Pastor Mark, Robin, & Zoe hosted their annual Open House and welcomed about 40 people into their cozy home for more great food and fellowship. The CLC kids helped hold a Christmas Celebration with the Christmas Story, candles, carols, and friendship being shared. Finally, we wrapped up 2007 with a Movie Night, showing The Wager, starring Randy Travis. We are thankful for the Lord's guidance and provision in 2007 and eagerly anticipate what He wants to do in and through us in 2008!
The highlight of November was our annual Thanksgiving Feast. Nearly 70 people came together to express gratitude to God, enjoy a great meal, and develop deeper friendships.
We said goodbye to a dear friend in October. Glenn Uhrig passed away peacefully on October 6, and went to be with Jesus. Over 150 people filled this building to honor Glenn and have a meal together. Glenn's graveside service was one to remember, as an old tractor pulled his homemade casket up the hill to his resting place, followed by 100 or so friends and family. We will miss you for now, Glenn, but will see you after while! Other events in October included attending Leadership Development Cohorts, taking 3 youth to Youth Convention in Salem, and sealing/painting the south side of the church building. We also rejoiced to see the release of our new testimony book. It contains personal stories of healing, deliverance, and restoration, some of them from our own people! We hope to spread hope and encouragement by its release and dispersion.
September started with a "Back-to-school" emphasis, as the kids (and all of us) were reminded to take Jesus with them wherever they go. We enjoyed a church family dinner together, had a workday to prep the south side of our building for sealer and paint, took a night to laugh together as we watched various Christian comedians, and we joined with our brothers and sisters from other local churches for a night of singing and fellowship.
Evangelist Daren Lindley helped us start August off right, as he spent 3 days with us, sharing about the inexhaustible love of Jesus. His ministry was well received and he left a load of encouragement in his wake. Daren is also the founder of Good Catch Publishing and is helping us put together a book of testimonies from Christian Life Center that will help us share hope and freedom with others. August was also our first annual multi-church community VBS. We utilized the facilities of 3 churches in close proximity and people from several churches in town joined together to minister to more than 60 different kids throughout the week. The Covenant Players also blessed us on a Sunday morning as they shared the love of Jesus through drama.
July brought the famous Elgin Stampede to our fair town. Our involvement included attending the Bull Riding and Rodeo, AND offering a free BBQ after the parade on Sunday. Pastor Mark & Robin took 4 lovely girls to Teen Camp where a great time was had by all! After Sunday morning service most of the church family headed out to Ron & Neva Walker's pond for a picnic and water baptism. Great fun, great fellowship, great food! What a beautiful place! At the end of the month we hosted a 5th Sunday Sing, as several other churches joined us for a time of worship, singing, and fellowship.
In June we enjoyed a delicious cultural meal with
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