Newsletter January 2022


Rev. Nancy Coleman Johnson


Administrative Assistant:  
Melanie Stine
Choir Director & Organist
Sue Lamm
Substitute Pianist & Organist     
Ella Sue Coffey


401 North Main Street 
Post Office Box 451
Amherst VA 24521
Telephone (434) 946-7624


Church Council:
Pam Brockman, Chair


Board of Trustees:
Maynard Campbell, Co-Chair
Mike Mozingo, Co-Chair


January 2022

Emmanuel United Methodist Church


Worship Service 10:30 am

In the New Year, 

The Work of Christmas Begins

Now that Christmas is over, the dawning of a new year invites us as Christ’s disciples to live out the miracle we just celebrated. The following poem reminds us that the end of our Christmas celebration brings a New Year full of possibilities and opportunities to share the love of God in Christ with others:

When the carols have been stilled,
When the star-topped tree is taken down,
When family and friends have all gone home,
When we are back to our schedules,
The work of Christmas begins:

To find the lost,
To heal the broken,
To feed the hungry,
To release the prisoner,
To rebuild the nations,
To bring peace among people,
     To build bridges of trust, not walls of fear,
   To share our gifts,
   To seek justice and peace for all people,

To make music in the heart.

   To bring Christ’s light to the world.

– adapted from Michael Dougherty, a variation on

“When the Song of the Angels is Stilled” by Howard Thurman.

































              EUMC Worship to Remain Virtual Only through Sunday, January 9:

          Given the current and rapid rise of COVID 19 cases in our own area, state and across the nation, and the recent cases and potential exposures that we have experienced at Emmanuel, out of an abundance of caution, our Church Council voted unanimously on December 21 to suspend gathering in person for worship at this time and return to online worship/worship by phone only at least until after Sunday, January 9. The Council will meet again on Tuesday, January 11 to reassess the situation and decide how to proceed at that time. For the time being, all committee meetings will be held virtually. All part-time staff, volunteers serving in essential ministry programs (Amherst Cares, Food Pantry, Meals on Wheels, etc.), and others who enter the church building are required to wear masks and observe physical distancing when inside the church. Given the time of year, this was a very difficult decision for the Council to make, but in consideration of the average age of our worshipers and the current uncertainty surrounding the omicron variant, the Council felt strongly that this was our best course of action. Additionally, continuing with in-person worship involves not only the pastor, but other worship assistants (musicians, ushers, readers, etc.), many of whom prefer not to meet in person at this time.

As we have done throughout the pandemic, Sunday morning worship resources will continue to be emailed to the congregation each week with the link to the worship video that can be accessed through our YouTube channel. The service is also posted on our website at and on our Facebook page at Emmanuel United Methodist Church-Amherst. For those without internet access, an audio recording of the service is available by dialing 434-381-0027 from any phone toll-free, 24/7. A full-text printed copy of the worship service will continue to be mailed out to our homebound friends, and to those who request that format.

We anticipate that remaining virtual for worship will be a short-lived situation for us and look forward to gathering again in the very near future. In the meantime, check in by phone with your church friends, pray for all those around the world who are battling the virus and those that are caring for them, and look forward in hope to brighter and better days! If you hear of any pastoral care needs of which the pastor may not be aware, please contact Nancy by phone: 434-401-5776.

Upcoming Virtual Training Opportunities

Two of our bi-districts are offering virtual training opportunities in January that are open to anyone in the Virginia Conference that wishes to attend. There is no charge to attend, and a variety of learning options are available. If you need assistance in registering, please contact Melanie in the church office (434-946-7624) and let Nancy know that you plan to attend.


Alexandria and Arlington Districts will host its annual Bi-District Training Day (BDTD) on January 15, 2022.  This event will take place virtually, and registration is open to all of the Virginia Conference.  At BDTD speakers offer training sessions and workshops in a multitude of ministry areas to help attendees learn and grow.  This year’s event will feature the Rev. Michael Beck, author of Fresh Expressions in a Digital Age: How the Church Can Prepare for a Post-Pandemic and Contextual Intelligence: Unlocking the Ancient Secret to Mission on the Front Lines.  Choose from 66 workshops – including three live sessions with Michael Beck and five live zoom lunchtime conversations for networking and fellowship.  Prerecorded content from more than 50 speakers will be available.  The event covers topics in 23 different catagories.  If you want to learn or grow to help your church and community, there’s a session for you! 

                Register for Bi-District Training Day:

 Roanoke/Staunton Bi-District Training, Saturday, January 22: The Roanoke and Staunton Districts will host their first Bi-District Training Day of 2022 on January 22. All clergy and laity in the Virginia Conference are welcome to participate. This virtual event will be free and registration is required. Training will feature two presentations by Bishop William H. Willimon on the topic “Preaching and Hearing Sermons in a Polarized Age.”  Also offered will be workshops for clergy and laity on topics relevant to a wide range of ministry settings. Bishop Willimon will open the training at 9:00 AM followed by breakout workshops at 10:15 AM and conclude with part two of Bishop Willimon’s presentation. More information is available at:


The Worship Team thanks all those that purchased poinsettias or made donations in honor and/or memory of loved ones to help us create our beautiful poinsettia tree in our church sanctuary for the Advent and Christmas seasons. You are invited to join us in “UN-Decking the Halls” of the church and Sanctuary on Wednesday, January 5 at 4:30 p.m. All those who are able to assist should plan on wearing a mask and observing physical distancing while inside the church building. This is a big task, and we appreciate all those who are able to help.


Church Family Christmas Cards: If you have not yet picked up your bag of church family Christmas Cards, they will be available in the Narthex (front entrance) of the Sanctuary though Sunday, January 9. The church office is open on M-W-F from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., but will be closed on Monday, January 3 for the New Year’s holiday.


2022 Church Offering Envelopes: Our church offering envelope booklets that we usually distribute in December have not yet been received due to production delays. We anticipate receiving them in early January, but until they are distributed, you may use any leftover envelopes you may have from last year (just change the date on the front), or mark your gifts with your envelope number. If you do not know your envelope number, contact the church office. A record of giving for tax purposes is maintained by the church for all those using an envelope number. Quarterly statements are mailed out to acknowledge all gifts. If you have not been assigned an envelope number, but would like to receive numbered offering envelopes, please contact the church office (434-946-7624;


Updating Contact Information: Recently, the worship bulletin included a list of contact information updates and additions to the church pictorial directory that the church office has received. Extra copies are available at the Sanctuary entrances and in the church office. Please communicate any updates to the church office by using the blue “connect with us” form in worship, or by emailing or calling the church office (; 434-946-7624) to update your information. Your assistance is most appreciated.


Can you assist in Worship? Opportunities to serve as ushers, check-in/greeters, and Lay Readers are available for 2022. Please consider these avenues of ministry and sign up on the big bulletin board in the hallway behind the Sanctuary. Your service is most appreciated.


Church Security for Worship

          In light of many recent events, the Church Council has established a Church Safety Task Force and a Church Security Team. The members of each group are listed below. The Safety Task Force is looking at overall safety and long term planning. The Security Team is providing security for worship and other church activities. If anyone is interested in helping with this please let me know. You may also contact the church office.

          All church members need to be security conscious while attending activities in the church. All church activities should have a designated point of contact for security related matters. 

          If any church member sees something that they believe is a concern or possible threat to the congregation they should alert a member of the Security team. If in doubt you may raise your hand and/or call on Pastor Nancy for a musical interlude. This will alert the security team that there is an issue that needs to be addressed and allow them to see who has seen the potential problem so the concern can be identified and addressed. “See Something Say Something”.

          During the December 12 worship service, there was a medical emergency with one of the choir members . This is a great example of how the congregation and the security team can work together.  Bob Smith and Jill Clark attended to the member. Members of the congregation called 911. The security team establish a perimeter and facilitated safe ingress of the rescue squad. 

Church Safety Task Force:

Chair:         David Hewes

Members:    Mike Gamble

David Mears

Board of Trustees Representative Mike Mozingo

George Peters

Pastor Nancy

Church Security Team:

David Hewes

Jeanie Combs, Head Usher

Jill Clark, Greeter

Mike Stinnett, Usher

Bob Andercyk, Usher

Lindy White

Jack Brandell

Others will be added as needed


Below is an outline of Security action for worship and other activities at the church:

  • threat or concern identified
  • alert team leader as appropriate, example (ask Pastor Nancy for a musical interlude)
  • assess need for law enforcement/first responders
  • at least two team members address concern
  • shelter in place/evacuate
  • establish safety zones
  • point of contact for first responders


Security Team radios are located in the church office. These should be utilized by the Security Team during church events to facilitate communication.


Church activities outside of worship:

A member attending the meeting or activity shall be designated as monitor for security concerns. This will include but not be limited to monitoring access to the church. No doors should be propped open. If possible doors should be locked once all participants have arrived.

I appreciate everyone’s patience as we move forward with our Security Planning. More detailed information will be provided in the future.


Dave Hewes, Security Team Leader



Words of Thanks


Thank you for the cards, prayers, and concern for Tom. Your kindness means so much to us. Tom and Janie Hall 


Thank you for all your prayers, kindness and thoughtful gestures at the time of my brother-in-law’s passing. Janie Hall 


Dear Friends, I cannot express just how much I appreciate your support with cards, prayers, and other expressions of love and concern in my illness. God had a reason for keeping me alive and I am so grateful. I have missed being with you at church but hope to be back soon! May God bless each of you and keep you safe and healthy! God Bless! Libby Jennings 


Thank you so much for your thoughts, prayers, and financial support for us during this time. God has truly blessed us with so many caring friends. God bless you, Cathy Pugh, Sherando United Methodist Church 


Thank you all so much for your donations toward our rebuilding fund for Sherando Methodist Church. It is greatly appreciated. May you all have a blessed Christmas. Love, Madeline Bailey 


On behalf of the congregation, many thanks to Margaret Ann (Worship Team Chair) and Lindy White who worked diligently throughout the Advent and Christmas seasons to organize and lead the decorating of our church and sanctuary, maintain the poinsettia tree by caring for the plants, and reset the chancel area after the recording of the Christmas Eve service. We also express appreciation to the members of the Worship Team and others who assisted with these efforts. Thank you for enhancing our worship experiences with the beautiful decorations. With Love and Appreciation, Pastor Nancy


Many thanks to Jeanie Combs who faithfully organizes our Church Family Christmas Card distribution each year. Your labor of love on behalf of our congregation is much appreciated! With Love and Appreciation, Pastor Nancy


Thank You for Your Continued Faithfulness in Giving We are so very thankful for the continued faithfulness of the congregation in giving through our regular tithes and offerings each week. Your generosity enables us to meet our regular operating and ministry expenses, support numerous mission endeavors, and makes it possible for us to pay our District and Conference apportionments in a timely way. As the end of the giving year approaches, we give thanks to God and to the congregation that we are up to date with all of our obligations. Thanks to a Conference re-prioritization of apportionments initiated during the pandemic, all churches in the Virginia Conference were given the option of paying “Priority One” apportionments first, and then asked to consider the payment of “Priority Two” apportionments if funds were available. Churches who meet “Priority One” obligations in full are considered 100% paid. Because of this reduction in our Conference apportionments, we have been able to meet the “Priority One” obligations in full for 2020 and 2021. Thanks be to God, and to our congregation, for your faithful stewardship.                  

~ EUMC Finance Team



We give God thanks and praise for God’s gracious provision for us, and for the faithfulness of our church family in the giving of God’s tithes and offerings. To God be the glory!





In Person


General Fund


November 21




   $   489.00   

November 28




   $   448.54

December 5





December 12





December 19






Lay Leadership for January


      Lay Reader:   Mike Mozingo   Check-In:                                              Ushers:   Jeanie Combs


Altar Flowers


January 2


January 9

Janie & Tom Hall

January 16

Janie & Tom Hall

January 23

Janie & Tom Hall

January 30

Janie & Tom Hall


January Birthdays



01/01   Pembrooke Apperson

01/04   Andrew Apperson

01/05   Phil Lamm

01/07   Bo Combs

01/08   Angela Hope

01/08   Robert Ondrick

01/10   Virginia Brockman

01/10   Barbara Ramsey

01/13   Lindy White

01/14   Tangie Motley

01/17   Shannan Carter

01/18   Stephanie Maddox

01/19   Libby Howell Jennings

01/19   Mike Stinnett

01/22   Tom Hall

01/24   Abby Tomlin

01/26   William Clinton Ferguson





Newsletter Editor:  Cat Brandell, Phone: 946-9102; Email: Deadline to submit newsletter articles:  20th of the month.  If you can send your information by email, it would be appreciated.  If you do not have email, your article may be left at the church office in the newsletter basket or in the folder located in the wall box outside the church office door..