By Anna Jean Rhodes
Wednesday, Dec. 22
• Christmas is only three days away. This is the time to finalize the Christmas shopping.
• Youth Group will meet to eat at 6:30 p.m. in the First United Methodist Church fellowship hall and the meeting will be held from 7-8 p.m.
Friday, Dec. 24
• First Church of God will hold a Christmas Eve candlelight service from 5-7 p.m.
• First United Methodist Church will hold an open sanctuary communion from 6-8 p.m. There also will be a 10 p.m. candlelight service.
• St. Elmo Christian Church will hold a candlelight service at 6 p.m.
• Freedom Reigns in Christ will hold a Christmas Eve candlelight Communion service from 6-7 p.m.
Saturday, Dec. 25
• Christ the Savior is born.
• A very Merry Christmas to everyone.
• Shut-ins, singles and couples who will not have family for Christmas will receive a Christmas dinner.
The First United Methodist Church is providing the meat, and other churches are providing the salads, vegetables and desserts.
Some who can will go to the First United Methodist Church to eat, but those who cannot get out will get a plate of food delivered to them.
Sunday, Dec. 26
Youth who turn in money and parental release forms to Dave Altman, youth pastor at the St. Elmo Christian Church, will have their names entered in a drawing for door prizes.
Please see the article New Year’s Eve Lock-In following the announcements.
Wednesday, Dec. 29
• This is the final date to get the money and parental release form turned in to Dave Altman, youth pastor at St. Elmo Christian Church.
New Year’s Eve Lock-In
A New Year’s Eve Lock-In will be held for youth in grades 6-12 at Cornerstone Christian Church in Shiloh and the St. Elmo Christian Church. The youth have been invited and they can invite friends. The cost is $20, and there will be food, indoor paintball, strobe light dodge ball, live music and much more. The money and parental release forms turned in to Dave Altman, youth pastor at the St. Elmo Christian Church, will have the names entered in a drawing for door prizes. Otherwise, the youth have until Wednesday, Dec. 29, to get the money and release forms to Altman.
They plan to leave at 4:45 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 31, and return home around 9:30 a.m. on Saturday, Jan. 1.
Release forms can be picked up at the St. Elmo Christian Church. For questions, you can call 267-4170.
At the American Legion Post #420 meeting held the evening of Dec. 14 at the Legion Home, they voted to donate $100 to the Santa’s Secret Elves Tree and $100 to the Caring and Sharing program.
The new furnace and air conditioner have been installed at the Legion Home, but more work is planned for inside the home – paint, work on the bathrooms, etc.
New letters on the outside of the front of the building designating it as the American Legion Home soon will be done by a business in Hartville.
Those present at the meeting were Doyle Beck, Charles Bosomworth, Lucien Chandler, Xon Hanna, Clement Lilly, Ernie Myers, R. W. Smith and Max Watson.
Friendship Quilt Club
A Christmas dinner was served to about 25 Friendship Quilt Club members the evening of Dec. 14 in the St. Elmo Public Library. The club paid for the food, but the food was prepared by the committee: Joy Edwards and Shirley Siddens of Altamont and Mary Myers of St. Elmo.
The menu included pork loin roast, party potatoes, baked beans, a layered salad, a cherry salad, a jelled salad and blackberry and cherry cobblers with ice cream. The tables were decorated for Christmas by the library.
The committee gave each one a coffee mug that held a fat quarter of material and candies.
They didn’t play games, but were entertained by Richard Tucker and had a gift exchange.
Caring and Sharing
Members of the St. Elmo Lions Club, and several others who help each year, finished packing 64 boxes for Caring and Sharing on Dec. 18 at the Avena Township Hall.
The boxes included meat and other perishable foods in addition to the many donations of canned, boxed, bagged non-perishable food items.
The perishable foods were bought with the money donations made at the Caring and Sharing at the Fayette County Bank.
Also, the boxes contained a variety of Christmas gifts for the children of the Caring and Sharing recipients.
The Council of Catholic Women met at Mary Ann’s Restaurant on Dec. 7 for a dinner and Christmas party. The meal included pork loin, mashed potatoes, green beans or corn and slaw or a club salad with grilled chicken.
Cards were signed for the ill. The St. Mary’s Catholic Church is scheduled to be decorated for Christmas following the 5:30 p.m. Mass on Tuesday, Dec. 21.
Several Christmas games were played and the winners were Karen Denning, Libby Kessel, Mary Myers and Carol Rine. Others present were Mona Durbin, Lavonne Kramer, Pat Porter, Joan Sebright and Betty Springman.
Twenty-six units of blood were collected from the 31 presenters at the American Red Cross Blood Drive held the afternoon of Dec. 13 in St. Mary’s Catholic Church parish hall. The quota of 25 was surpassed by one. The Red Cross gave baseball caps to everyone.
A first time donor was Floyd Tharp of St. Elmo. Receiving pins were Glen Summann of Brownstown, 10 gallons; Paul Sidwell of Brownstown, 9 gallons; Lillian Grobengieser of St. Elmo, 5 gallons; and Jerry Brugoto of Brownstown, 1 gallon.
In addition to Summann, who has given 80 units, and Sidwell, who has given 72 units, those who have given more than 50 units are the following: Ina Abendroth of St. Elmo, 123; Pat Logsdon of St. Elmo, 107; Jack Belden of St. Elmo, 91; Leroy Snyder of St. Elmo, 86; Tammy Logsdon of St. Elmo, 82; Delores Voelker of Altamont, 78; Marie Hopper of Farina, 76; Wayne Lovett of Brownstown, 67; Dennis Garrison of St. Elmo, 65; and Sandra Lovett of Brownstown, 55.
City workers unloaded, Wright’s Corner Unit of Home and Community Education provided cookies and the St. Elmo Women’s Civic Club covered the canteen expense.
Chairman Karen Denning gives thanks to all who registered to give blood and the workers, who included Ina Abendroth, Susie Belden, Mary Myers, Irene Reed, Marilyn Sproat, Max Watson, Karen Wegscheid and Ethelyn Williams.
The next community Red Cross blood drive will be on Monday, April 11.
Because of the ice, the Home and Community Education units – St. Elmo and Wheatland – canceled their Christmas parties scheduled for Dec. 16. Wheatland was to go to the Vandalia Ponderosa, and St. Elmo was to go to the Effingham Raintree Restaurant.
Special Events at Fayette County Museum
The special display cases at the Fayette County Museum at 301 W. Main St. in Vandalia, feature a holiday display of 24 “Christmas With the Lincolns” prints by Lloyd Ostendorf.
Also on display are some century old Christmas postcards and some vintage Christmas toys. The displays will continue through Dec. 31.
In November, the museum welcomed 169 visitors. Groups included Tiger Scouts from Vandalia, second-grade students from Mulberry Grove, seventh-grade students from Vandalia and an antique car club from Belleville.
The Artworks Gallery features affordable holiday gift items.
Hours for the Museum and Artworks Gallery are: Monday through Saturday, 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m.; and Sundays, 1-4 p.m. The museum will close at 1:30 p.m. on Dec. 24 and will not be open on Christmas Day. For information or to schedule group tours, call 283-4866.
Ronnie and Lois Gillespie of Decatur visited Dec. 19 at Friendship Manor Nursing Home with his mother, Delores Gillespie.
Methodist Church Children’s Program
During the 10:35 a.m. worship service Dec. 19 at First United Methodist Church, the bulletin followed the general worship, which included Christmas hymns, prayers, scripture readings by Don Crawford and Pastor John Eisfelder, and a choir anthem, “Angel Medley,” directed by Kathy Spitler. Instead of the regular morning message, the Children’s Christmas Program was held.
Elementary youth participating in “Hay, a Stable Experience” were Madison Carson, Cynthia Cross, Daisy Cross, Karlie Fasnacht, Jonathan Hahn, Angel Harrison, Odie Heltsley, Amber Johnson, Emily Johnson, Zephaniah Johnson, Gavin Koontz, Brady Maxey, Colin Maxey, Katelyn Maxey, Cassidy Moss, Kelly Moss, Sydney Moss and
Sierra Triplett. Shannon Moss was in charge of the play.
Five of the youth got five adults from the congregation to play a shepherd, a king, etc. The adults were Tim Fasnacht, Brooke Maxey, Jeff Maxey, Blaine Scholes and Blake Wilson.
Youth Minister at St. Elmo Christian Church
The new youth minister at St. Elmo Christian Church is Dave Altman. He has a wife, Trista; a son Mitch, age 3; and a daughter Jenna, age 1.
Jim LaGrand recently placed his membership at the church.
Post-Polio Survivors & Friends
Post Polio Survivors and Friends of East Central Illinois ate lunch at Ryan’s Steakhouse in Effingham on Dec. 14. Those attending were Betty Anderson, Annie Barber, Ann Claypool and Glee Helms, all of Charleston; Marion Marten and Bill Wendling of Altamont; and Anna Jean Rhodes of St. Elmo.
After the meal, Barber passed around pictures of people, then read a little history of a person to see if those present could guess whose picture it was about. All of the picture people had suffered polio.
An interesting article follows: Eleanor Abbott was recovering from polio herself when she decided to create a board game for similarly afflicted youngsters forced to spend time in a cold, boring hospital.
The fruits of her work came to life in 1949 as Candy Land, a game that had as little to do with fruits (or any other healthy food) as possible.
The name of this game was candy, and the sweets-filled game board was as tempting to the gamers as the thrill of the race itself.
For favors, Barber passed out bags of candy to represent some of the candies mentioned in Candy Land – chocolate covered kisses, peppermints, licorice, gumdrops and lollipops.