What does your church do for New Years

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Do You Do Watch Night?

The smells of New Years are merrily floating about my house.

Collard greens, black eye peas, piquant-sauced ribs, honey-coated ham, fried chicken. It is a menage-a-soul that now pleases my nose but soon will have close scrutiny from my palate.

This mini-buffet will be transported to church this evening as the pot-luck part of our Watch Night service.

I enjoy the evening's fellowship as well as the opportunity to start the New Year right, praying to God a prayer of thankfulness for what as passed and of hopefulness for what is yet to come.

How does your church celebrate New Years?

As we gather this evening, I will uplight all of you, who have uplifted the ministry of A.M.E. Today, in a prayer of thanks for the great years we already have spent together and with a prayer of hope and assurance of continued fellowship and communion in our online, virtual community.

May God richly bless and keep you as we exit 2001 and begin our journey anew in 2002.

Rev. John

-- Anonymous, December 31, 2001


We celebrate Kwanzaa, and thank God for the many blessings that have been bestowed upon us. We have all of the edible acrudaments that you just described! May God richly bless you in 2002!

-- Anonymous, December 31, 2001

This year we're leaving the celebrating up to the youth. They're having a party that will be over by 1 AM. Last year though we had a watch night celebration, and it ended on a humorous note.

We started too early, so after the food, games, and prayer were over, we found ourselves sitting around at 11:30 yawning and looking at our watches. We finally realized we didn't HAVE to stay up until midnight, and went home.

-- Anonymous, December 31, 2001

We just go to bed and get a good nights rest. Praise the Lord.

Pastor Paris

-- Anonymous, December 31, 2001

Rev. Fisher one of my trustees went home to Atlanta some weeks ago, and he sent me a smoked turkey for Christmas overnight by UPS. So I know you can do the same thing with some ribs and black eye peas. Just don't send it via Florida, or Bill Dickens will eat my food. Happy New Year Rev. John, your montana sister;-)

-- Anonymous, December 31, 2001

We hold services at my church Hamilton Memorial A.M.E., along with the other sister churches in our city. We have a wonderful time praising the Lord and thanking him for his many blessings. Thanking him for what he has done, what he is doing, and for all the things that are yet to come. My sister is going to bring the message, and I know that it will be a spirit filled one. Then we retire to the fellowship hall for pot-luck also Rev. John. Can't think of a better place to be than where I have spent all the New Year Eve's of my life than in the house of the Lord!!!!!!!!!( ooppppsss except for last year, we had a horrific ice storm that left our city in total shambles, but God blesses and we have been given the opporutnity one more time to lift his name this New Year's Eve) To the A.M.E. Today family, Happy New Year and God Bless. Peace and Love in the 2K2!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

-- Anonymous, December 31, 2001

Good Morning and Happy New year to all! We had our watch night service tonight. We had mostly kids as usual. our congregation is approx 65% youth and teenagers. I just can't stop praising the lord enough for the blessings that he has bestowed upon us. We are Greater Mt. Zion A.M.E.Church, 3d Street, Pearlington, Ms. Also, greetings from St. James A.M.E. Church Picayune Ms. The Lord has allowed me to shepard another A.M.E congregation in the Picayune Community. The two communities are divided by the Stennis Space Center on the S.W. section of the great state of mississippi on the bank of the Pearl River. Again to Pastor John and Family and to the B B family, God'richest blessings for the New Year. P.S. Biloxi Ms. may be a site to consider for the A.M.E.TODAY Fellowship. Also The UMC has a location right on the Gulf of Mexico in Waveland Ms. There are Cabins avaliable to rent, a Small Hotel, and Camping Space.It was formerly owned by the Methodist Episcopal before the days of the coming together and renaming to be the U M C

-- Anonymous, January 01, 2002

Hey Denise,

Your smoked turkey would be safe here in Central Florida (unlike some places in the Panhandle) but do not make the mistake of dropping that bird in some peanut oil!   Then all bets would be off my sister!!


-- Anonymous, January 01, 2002

Chuck I can already see that when we have our A.M.E Today reunion I am going to bring a LOCKED food locker. And I thought my brother Bill was the only one I would have to worry about. (smile)

-- Anonymous, January 01, 2002

Happy New Year!! Just getting up from a long night. No, I did not attend a rocking New Year's Eve Pary not did I take a private jet to NY and go to Times Square. My family attended Watch Night service at our local church. We had Love Feast and enjoyed great preaching and singing. Our former pastor and now AME Bishop, AJ Richardson dropped by and provided inspirational comments about why a New Year is important. One of amy favorite hymns was selected as the congregational hymn and I nearly sang it to perfection, "My Faith Looks Up To Thee".

Now I understand that a talented frontier woman from the Great Mountain State has requested a package of tasty victuals and has insisted that it not be sent via the Sunshine State. Interesting. Furthermore, an equally talented, but far more "colorful" poster has recommended safe passage for this package provided it takes a meandering route through cnetral FL thereby bypassing the Panhandle region where unnamed noble people reside. Now let me make this perfectly clear. In addition to maintaining my tan, I will maintain my svelte body frame as well. However, if this suspicious looking and heavenly smelling package consists of all the normal victuals - collard green, macaroni & cheese, turkey & dressing, gravy, homemade bread, rice, sweet potatoe pie, etc., I will do the right thing by consuming the elements :-) However, I must advise you all that before going to church I read the 11th Chapter of Levitticus regarding dietary restrictions. Since neither caribou, moose, elk or other wild-like game simultaneously "chew the cud, part the hoof and be clovenfooted", I must decline my Mountain sister's generous invitation to mimick her acquired taste of such game. I enjoy looking and laughing at the great cartoon character Bullwinkle. I'm just releuctant about making him a part of my digestive system thus interfering with my recombinant DNA. QED

-- Anonymous, January 01, 2002

Brother Bill, I must set the record straight! I do not eat Moose! I will eat bear before I eat moose! Ugh, When I came to Montana 10 years ago, I was the United Methodist campus minister at Montana State university. There was only one other clergywoman within 400 miles. And five black people in my town. Boy did the "good ole boys have a fit! when I came to town." (heehee) but one of the things that the community has always loved about me, is that I have a pioneer spirit, so I tried elk, it is so good, I tried, buffalo, love it, I tried bear, it's so, so, I climbed mountains, skiied, (fell down a lot), went white water rafting, (even though I can't swim), visited, farms, ranches and just had fun. But one day while hiking in the mountains in the winter, I came across a moose, a friend of mine told me to stand near it so he could get a picture. Dumb me, did it! And yes there is a picture of me standing with a moose! The moose just stared and stared at me. (I probably was the first black person it had ever seen;-), I found out later they are dangerous animals and can kill you. So from that day, I have never eaten moose, out of respect for that moose not killing me. I know this is off topic, but I just had to share that story. By the way one of the most popular festivals in our town is in October it is "The testicle Festival" I don't like mountain oysters so I do not go. But when my daughter was 15 some of my daughters friends invited her to the festival, My daughter the ex-NewYorker called me on the phone, and said "Mom come and get me!! They are having a testicle festival!! We still laugh. Alas the longer I stay here I think brother Bill is right, I am a mountain woman. Montana grabs your heart and the Rocky mountains takes your breath away. O.k. go ahead and laugh brother bill!

-- Anonymous, January 01, 2002

I did not wake up until after noon today, and I still was feeling well satiated from the spiritual and physical feast we had last night.

First The Word, it was drawn from Revelations 21:1-6a with the preaching theme, "Everything is New" we had a high-shouting time in the House of the Lord as the Holy Spirit lit like lightning throughout the congregation.

And thankfully it was high-spirited, for we had partaken of God's bounty prior to the service and between the ribs, the African flavored chicken (several members of my congregation are from Liberia and they bring their delicacies to what truely was a groaning table) Down-home potatoe salad, collard greens, deviled eggs (the only place the devil could feel comfortable last night) hoppin' John and my new favorite dessert, dump cake.

It was one of those special spiritual nights and the fellowship and food were fantastic.

I am not sure how Rocky Mountain Oysters would have fit into that buffet. Once you get past rabbit, and an occasional squirrel, I have not ventured much into anything you could not get in an ACME or Super Fresh.

Sister Denise, I am not sure what way I would route those ribs to you, does not seem that they would have much success of a middle passage if they went by central or panhandle Florida so I suggest you just make your way to the outskirts of the City of Brotherly Love, not far from you alma mater of Princeton and we will have to serve them up to you fresh off the grill. And Brothers Chuck (Kinsler one of the first members ever of the A.M.E, Today family), Bill, you are welcome to assemble in the serving line!!!!

I hope you all had a blessed New Years and may 2002 be even fuller of God's blessings for you and yours.

Rev John

-- Anonymous, January 01, 2002

Rev. John I am going to take you up on your offer of spare ribs, and I want to try some African chicken. So let's set our date for our A.M.E reunion. I do hope ladies will be first in line for food. Though I should tell my A.M.E brothers all is fair when one is in line for food. By the way Rev. John did you tape the watchnight service on audio stream?

-- Anonymous, January 01, 2002

This year, because we have a new pastor, (only been with us three weeks)our church did not have watch night service. Our new pastor had a previous committment out of town.

So, my family and friends gathered at my house for worship. We had a hallelujah good time in the Lord. There was much prayer, testimonies, scripture readings, and singing. The message from the Lord came from Joshua 1:1-8. The subject was "Going Forward" Joshua 1:2.

Yes, there was good food (most of which I prepared) and fellowship before and afterwards. It will be a loooooong time before I cook like that again.(smile) My family has a tendency of pumping up my cooking ego during Christmas and New Years because they're waiting for the down home meal on New Years Day, which includes, chittlins, hopping johns, and my potato pies.

Rev. John, when you get ready to send the ribs let me know. I'll meet them half way and try to get them to their destination. I can get out of here without going through either central or north Florida.

-- Anonymous, January 02, 2002

At the Grant Nation in Toront we held A New Year's Eve Praise and Worship Celebration. Our ministerial team along with our newly organized Worship and Praise Ministry conducted service from 10 - 11:15 PM (Spirit led and Spirit filled. I began to minister the Word at 11:15 PM (The Rhema: Explicit Obedience) this led into a time of prayer at 11:58 PM and was followed by a Time of Impartation of Spiritual Blessings for the New Year.

-- Anonymous, January 03, 2002

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