Church Briefs

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Holy Cross to host Love Banquet this Sunday

The youth of Holy Cross Lutheran Church will hold a Love Banquet this Sunday, beginning at 11 a.m. The meal will feature lasagna, spaghetti, salad and garlic bread.
An auction is scheduled to start at noon.
Cost for the meal is $7 for adults and $4 for children under age 10.
For more information, call the church at 283-1133.

Area clergy to be trained to assist firefighters

In order to help ministers care for their church members who experience trauma as the result of a fire or to minister to firefighters, a training session for area clergy will be held on Friday, Feb. 18, in Effingham.
That training will prepare the clergy to support and work with firefighters and their families. It will include training on working with local fire departments, giving death notification properly, ministering to firefighters and their families, and responding to victims and their families at the scene of a fire.
The session, presented by Chaplain Jennie Swanson, president of the Illinois Corps of Fire Chaplains, will run from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. and will be held at the Effingham Fire Department, 505 W. Fayette Ave. in Effingham.
To learn more or to register for the training, contact Joan Buzzard of the Effingham Fire Department at 217-342-2555, or visit www.mabas54.org to download a registration form.
The training is sponsored by the Mutual Aid Box Alarm System (MABAS), division 54. The organization is comprised of the fire departments and fire districts that serve the communities in portions of Effingham, Jasper, Fayette, Shelby, Cumberland and Richland counties.

Holy Cross to install new assistant pastor Feb. 20

The Rev. Jerry Bagwell of Odessa, Texas, will be installed on Sunday, Feb. 20, at 2 p.m. as the assistant pastor at Holy Cross Lutheran Church in Vandalia.
Bagwell brings 29 years of pastoral experience to the position.
He will join the Rev. Peter Kolb on the pastoral staff of the church, which is located at 726 W. Fillmore St.
For more information, call 283-1133.
Branson entertainer Allen Edwards performs Thursday

A catered Valentine dinner and a concert by Branson, Mo., entertainer Allen Edwards will be held this Saturday at Hillsboro United Methodist Church.
The event includes a dinner at 6 p.m. and the program at 7 p.m. For dinner reservations, call 217-532-3734 by Thursday.

OASIS group holds meeting

The OASIS group at First Baptist Church of Vandalia met on Jan. 28, with 19 members present.
Birthdays for each month of the year were celebrated. Ginger Wells presided over a short business meeting.
Games were played and baby pictures identified. Lois Peck and Joyce Carter served birthday cake, Jello, cold drinks and coffee.
For more information about the group and upcoming activities, call Wells at 283-9995.

Handbell festival registration deadline is Feb. 26

The Illinois Great Rivers Conference chapter of the Fellowship of United Methodists in Music and Worship Arts will hold its 23rd annual handbell festival on Saturday, March 26, in Springfield.
The all-day event is open to handbell choirs or individual ringers. Participation is limited to the first 200 registrants, and the registration deadline is Saturday, Feb. 26.
For more information, contact Marilyn Hirschman at P.O. Box 138, Farmer City, Ill. 61842. Her phone number is 309-928-2067.

'Passion Painter' at Parkview Feb. 23

Andy Raines, known as the "Passion Painter" from Wood River, will present a program on Wednesday, Feb. 23, at Parkview Free Methodist Church in Vandalia.
At the 7 p.m. service, he will paint while worship music is playing and while he is sharing his testimony. Refreshments will be served after the program.
 For more information, call Kathy at 292-9093.