31 Stream Lane
Levittown, PA 19055
215-547-6262 or 267-230-1149
December 7, 2012 (“Remember Pearl Harbor” & 9-11)
Dear Praying Friends,
Greetings in His matchless Name!
Well Christmas is just around the corner. Let’s look at a few facts about “Christmas.” We all know that in the world it is NOT about Him, but believers need to know that without Him there is no Christmas.
1. Why the word “Christmas”? It does NOT mean “Christ’s Mass”, as some have said. It means “Christ Sent”. Originally in the early church it was called “Michaelmas” (Michael Sent), speaking of the announcement of Christ’s miraculous conception by Michael the arch-angel to the shepherds along with the “multitude of the heavenly host,” and was celebrated on September 29th, the same date as the Jewish Feast of Tabernacles.
2. Why celebrate His birth? The early church celebrated His conception, not His birth. His birth was a supernatural birth, but His conception was indeed miraculous. As believers we may not only have the date wrong, but also the reason for the celebration as well. However, the day He really became flesh is important as well for without that event there could have been no sinless life and atoning death and glorious resurrection. Humans do not celebrate their conception, but their physical birth into the world.
3. Too often the Wise Men are included in the manger scene. He was not in the manger when the Wise Men brought their gifts, he was in a house, and was probably about two years old. (Herod tried to kill Him by murdering all the children two years old and under.)
So, I wish you all a Merry Christmas! It is true that many unbiblical and extra biblical traditions and customs have grown up around His birth, but as believers we can still be “merry” and rejoice that “Christ Jesus is come into the world to save sinners.” He, of course is the greatest gift, so let’s focus on giving Him (through His Church) a special gift this season.
Someone has said that “all good things must come to an end.” It is a little unnerving to realize that many of the things this old preacher and his wife have been involved in over the years are occurring for the last time! It makes us more aware of our finiteness. After 17 years I have resigned my position as a teacher at the Solid Rock School of the Scriptures. With failing health and eyesight (and old age), the drive (at night both ways in the winter semester) was getting more dangerous. We would leave the house at about 4:30 PM and drive in rush hour traffic for the next hour & a half. Last Tuesday night it took over two hours due to a bridge opening and an accident on I-295. Then with Christmas traffic and rush hour it was bumper to bumper all the way down Rt. 73. Very frustrating. I broke a longstanding record of never being late for my classes. Next week will the last class of this semester and be my last class. I am heartbroken over this, but it is definitely time. In all fairness, Pastor Clark offered to have someone come from his church to pick us up and drive us both ways. I felt this was too much to ask of anyone. It would mean a commitment of about 7 hours each Tuesday evening. That would get old quickly.
But when the Lord closes one door, He often opens another. I have accepted a position at the Straightway Baptist Church in the Princeton, NJ area to be the pastor’s “assistant” or mentor – or whatever. I will still be taking whatever meetings that come my way, and I will be teaching Pastor Guarneri’s Sunday School class whenever I am in town. He also promised me that I would be able to preach there about once per month. Please pray about a permanent location for our church. We are presently meeting in a hotel. We have our eye on a property which is in a nice location in a residential area in Hamilton Twp., NJ. Presently the church is about 20 minutes from my home. If this move becomes a reality we will be about 5-8 minutes closer.
Pastor Guarneri is a great preacher/teacher and an expositor of God’s Word! He is a man of God who knows the Book. I am sure we will grow under his capable leadership. We have already met and come to love some of the people in this new ministry. He has a great family as well. They have already demonstrated love and kindness to us in several ways.
Then too we have had to move our church membership from Calvary Bible Baptist Church in Willingboro, NJ. Pastor Aaron McCullough has been very good to us and is a great friend and a great pastor! The church is growing and things are going well there. We have come to know and love the folks in the church and will miss them. I hope we are invited back to preach there on occasion.
We hope you all survived the visit from Super storm Sandy! We were without electricity for 5 days and Pastor McCullough brought over a generator for the last two days. We only lost the food in our freezer. No other damage or loss. Praise the Lord! My son-in-law, Jerry Lefevers and I traveled to Belmar, NJ to bring his boat home last week. The area there is devastated. Some 20+ boats stored in the parking lot of our marina were floated off their blocks and tossed together like a salad with much damage$$$. (Jerry had moved his boat about 6 miles away from the shoreline. No damage - although two large trees fell and just missed his boat.) The boardwalk in Belmar and Avon are GONE! Homes and businesses had over 4 feet of water inside. There is sand everywhere. The beachfront is cordoned off. Two drawbridges are not working. The railroad bridge (also a drawbridge) was completely under water. They had a storm surge and two high tides with a full moon that inundated everything. Several marinas and homes are no more!
We are just beginning to add meetings for the New Year – 2013! (Of course if the Mayan calendar is right we won’t be here! Better still, and more likely, if the Rapture happens we will be gone to Heaven.) We have many prime dates available (hint). For every pastor and church which have used us this past year, we owe a hearty thank you! You are our life-blood. You are also an encouragement to us and we trust we are an encouragement to you and your people.
It seems that Satan is targeting preachers in Bible-believing and preaching churches these days. Please pray diligently for: Pastor Steve Hays (MG), Pastor Charles Clark, Jr. (post surgical complications which have removed his voice), Pastor Rick Wedemeyer (stroke), Pastor Arthur Gilmore (post surgical complications), Pastor Jim Fulleylove (heart attack), Pastor Carl LoTurco (recovery from recent surgery – much pain), Pastor Dennis Higgins (grand daughter with leukemia), Pastor Charles Clark, III (wife has complicated physical ailments whichare undiagnosed, including numbness), and my wife with constant pain. I too have had some sudden hip, leg and back pain. It has lessened, but I am still going to a chiropractor and it makes ministry a little more difficult. Praise the Lord that adrenaline and the dear Holy Spirit seem to diminish the pain when I am preaching and teaching!
Have a Blessed Christmas and a spiritually prosperous New Year – 2013!
Sincerely in the Savior,
Pastor (emeritus) Paul C. Fedena