Friday, April 30, 2010


    OXFORD, NE - Early Friday morning fire broke out in the home of one of our neighbors and church members here in Oxford.  The home of Mary Ellen Best was complete destroyed in the fire.
    We are asking for your prayers of comfort and strength for Mary Ellen, and for your assistance in helping her through this tragic situation.  If you would like to help, please contact Pastor Eldon at or at 308-824-3612.

    GRAND ISLAND, NE - Several days ago a family with two children lost their home in Grand Island, NE to fire.  The home was completely leveled in the blaze.  We are asking for your prayers and help for Jason & Desire Rhoades and thier children, Alexia, age 3 and Joshua, age 1.  There are also two brothers, Blade, 14 and Zackary, 15 who lost thier belongings in the fire.
    Clothing sizes for the family are - Jason - Size 34/30 pants & XL shirts;  Desire - Size 15 to 16 ladies & XL shirts;  Alexia - 3T to 4T;  Joshua - 18 mo.;  Zackary - Size 44/30 pants & 4X Tall shirts;  Blade - Size 31/30 pants & Large shirts.
    If you can help the Rhoades family, please contact Pastor Eldon at or at 308-842-3612.  You may also contact the Grand Island Red Cross at 308-382-3790

Thank you in advance for showing the love and grace of our Lord Christ Jesus. Amen.
God bless you,
Pastor Eldon

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

The Music & Joy of the McClellan Sisters

Sunday evening, April 25, the Oxford United Methodist Church was filled with the music and joy of the McClellan Singing Sisters of Adams, NE.

Over eighty people enjoyed The McClellan Sisters as they performed a variety of Southern Gospel, bluegrass and contemporary Christian music mixed with a wonderful sense of humor and powerful testimonies.

Nine year old TaMara held the crowd spellbound as she sang a solo about how God can mend the broken pieces of our hearts, while Tiffany blistered the stage with a red hot harmonica solo. Kimberly shared her talent with ‘God Can Save Anybody’, followed by Jewel mixing it up with a snappy bluegrass number.

After the program, coffee and cookies were served in the fellowship hall and everyone had the opportunity to meet and visit with the McClellan Sisters.

P.S.  If anyone finds a monkey holding a brick, it belings to Tiffany!

Changing the World With Prayer

As members of the of the Oxford United Methodist Church left the April 25 morning worship service, each was offered a Prayer Balloon to take outside and join in the Prayer Lift. At right, Ellen Fablinger helps Jena Hunt pick a pink balloon to match her colorful outfit.

Along with the clean-up of the park and old school grounds, this launching of Prayer Balloons was part of the United Methodist Church’s Rethink Church 'Change the World' campaign conducted April 24 and 25 in Methodist churches all around the globe.

Members offer prayers as they prepare to launch seventy Prayer Balloons Sunday morning, April 25.  "Today we lift these balloons and our prayers for those among and around us who need to feel the love of God and to know that someone somewhere is praying for them", Pastor Eldon Fablinger told the crowd.

"Though we know not where these balloons or the attached card may land, it is our prayer they, like Jesus says in the parable of the sower, 'fall on good ground and yielded a (good) crop'", Pastor Eldon said.

"This weekend we join with over 70 million other United Methodists as we work together to help make a difference in our local communities, and in our own way, help make the world a little better place to live", Pastor Fablinger told the group.
And, with the Amen, the balloons were released and the south wind quickly sent them on their way.....

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Community Involvement Day

April 24, 2010 - Saturday morning brought several members of the Oxford United Methodist Church together to participate in a Community Involvement Day as part of the UMC's 'Change the World Weekend'.

The group met for coffee and a quick planning session at 8:30 a.m. and were then on their way the to Geo. Mitchell Park in Oxford. At the park, the group dispersed and began picking up trash and limbs in the area of the shelter, playground and picnic area. They made their way north toward the  baseball field collecting trash as they went.
The group made a clean sweep of the ball diamond and then progressed to the RV camp area and along the Frisbee course. A couple members of the group went on south to the the old baseball field and on to the pond, picking up trash and clearing limbs from the Frisbee course. One member of the group discovered what he thought was an old piece of rope - wasn't a rope... but a snake!

At the north baseball field, the group spent over an hour picking up rocks and broken cement, sweeping, and shoveling the dirt and mud from the bleachers.

From the Goe. Mitchell Park, several members went on to clean-up around the tennis and basketball courts, and playground at the old school west of the Church.

Members of the group were Pastor Eldon, Ronnie Maybon, Judy Vaughn, Sue & Dale Sheneman and Neal Rhynalds.

Thanks for an enjoyable time and an awesome job!  Together we can 'Change the World'.

Friday, April 23, 2010

"Arise and Live"
     In Acts Chapter 9 we read of 'a certain disciple named Tabitha. This woman was full of good works and charitable deeds which she did.' But, Tabitha died. She must have been very well like and respected because the disciples sent for Peter to come immediately. 
     This is a story about LIFE. It's about the life of Tabitha who went about doing good works and charitable deeds, and about Peter and the power of life when one is filled with the Spirit of God. 
     Tabitha was surely filled with the Spirit of God as she went about doing good and helping others. I can only imagine the encouragement and life she must have brought to those around her. 
     By her positive attitude and kind actions, Tabitha embraced life - and freely passed it on so others could enjoy and live a more meaningful life.
Peter, being filled with the Holy Spirit, brought this woman back from the dead. Upon seeing her in the upper room, 'he knelt down and prayed. And turning to the body he said, "Tabitha, arise.'' And she opened her eyes, and when she saw Peter she sat up.' 
     Though we may not be able to raise the dead from a grave, we do, like Peter, have the power of life in our words. We can speak life to those who are 'dead in sin'. We can speak words of encouragement and joy to those who are suffering and hurting. We can speak the words of Christ and break the bonds of sin and death, and lead others to life - eternal life.
     How is your life? Are you living in the Spirit? Are your words those of life? Are your deeds and actions those which help others live? 
      Let us follow Tabitha and Peter with our words and deeds - of LIFE! Let us help others 'Arise and Live' in the newness and fullness of Christ our Lord.
                                      May God bless and keep you.....
                                  Pastor Eldon
                                  See you in church Sunday!

Reaching Out with Prayer Balloons

As part of the Change the World campaign of the United
Methodist Church, the Oxford UMC has been invited by Sheila Harrison, Project Coordinator, Rethink Church, UMC to release another set of Prayer Balloons on April 25.

We discussed this and have decided to launch 70 Prayer Balloons after our regular Morning Worship Service. We will pick up the balloons Saturday afternoon and attached the prayer cards to them and store the balloons in one of the Sunday school rooms until Sunday.

After our Worship Service, all members of the congregation are invited to take a balloon or two outside in front of the Church for the Prayer Lift Ceremony. Prayers will be offered for the balloons flight and for those people who may find one
of the balloons with the attached prayer card.

We shall also be praying for our friends, and neighbors, and
the many, many people who yearn to feel the love and grace of God in their lives. We will be praying that the Holy Spirit touch
their lives and they come to a wonderful, intimate relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ.

Along with our Community Involvement Project on April 24, we are pleased to be connected with and be a part of such a wonderful campaign as Rethink Church and the 'Change the World' Weekend. This is an interesting and fun way to involve the local congregation in a world-wide event designed to help reach people outside of the church walls.

McClellan Singing Sisters Return to Oxford

This Sunday, April 25, the McClellan Singing Sisters will return to Oxford and present their unique blend of Gospel music, sisterly humor and Christian message at the Oxford United Methodist Church at 7:00 p.m.

The McClellans are an award winning Southern Gospel quartet from Adams, NE and currently have four albums.

The McClellans are known for their high-energy shows filled with family harmony and uplifting messages. Mixing their unique sound, audience participation, a harminica, piano, sisterly humor and you have an enjoyable and meaningful program.
Everyone is invited and refreshments will be served after the program. A free will offering will be taken.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

We are proud to introduce what we hope is something which will help us connect and improve our current connections. We call it ‘Get the Spirit On’.

To ‘Get The Spirit On’ is a multi faceted concept which is grounded in the Spirit of God. It means to get the Spirit, to allow the Spirit of God to be an active part of your life, and through the Spirit – actively live your faith, both in worship and in your daily lives and relationships.

To ‘Get The Spirit On’ is to not only embrace our faith, but to live our faith by putting action to our words, with courage, energy, determination. To get into the spirit of things with vitality and enthusiasm, and with joy.

To be excited that we are sons and daughters of the living God who gave His Son that we might have life. Excited to be able to worship in such a wonderful place, with your friends and neighbors. Excited and thankful that we are so blessed to have one another to share with, to pray with and to be there in times of need.

To ‘Get The Spirit On’ is to have an intimate relationship with the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, and to have loving relationships with one another – and, to be excited and enthusiastic about it.

I invite you to ‘Get The Spirit On’. Would you join with us as we together, as the Body of Christ – let's ‘Get The Spirit On’.

Breakfast Burritos and a Bucket

What do you get when you mix breakfast burritos with a cinder block, a roll of duct tape, an old wooden bucket, and about 60 hungry Methodists?

You get a 'South of the Border Breakfast Burrito Bar' and a very interesting Sunday morning program.

Members of the Oxford UMC congregation were greeted Sunday morning, April 18 with their choice of two freshly ground coffees and an awesome 'build-your-own breakfast burrito bar' which included eggs, sausage, onions, olives, chives, sour cream, cheese and - of course plenty of salsa! Adding to the flavor of the morning were homemade cinnamon rolls and blueberry muffins, and a table full of various kinds of fresh fruit.

Participants were also greeted with some very unusual table decorations, which included a cinder block, a plastic spatula, a roll of duct tape, a can of bug spray, a large empty bowl, a tube of silicon caulking, and a wooden level - just to name a few of the items.

The idea was to have the people sitting at each table to discuss and write down how the unusual centerpieces could relate to - God, Scripture, and/or your walk of faith. In the ten minutes allotted, there was much discussion, head scratching and laughter among the participants.

Each table was then invited to have a spokesperson explain about their respective decorations and the many different ways they could related to God, Scripture and their walk of faith. The answers reflected a very well rounded knowledge of the Bible, a deep sense of faith, and a warm hearted sense of humor.

"This was one of the most interesting and different services we have every had", said one parishioner. Another member stated, "You really made us think this morning, it was fun and very meaningful."

Up, Up & Away With Prayer Balloons

PRAYER LIFT 2010 - March 14, 2010

Members of the Oxford United Methodist Church prepare to launch a second volley of prayer balloons after Sunday’s Worship service.

The first set of prayer balloons were released Sunday, March 7 as part of the Oxford church’s Prayer Lift 2010 campaign. "This is one of the ways we are participating in the United Methodist Church’s RETHINK CHURCH program," said Pastor Eldon Fablinger.

RETHINK CHURCH is a national program designed to redefine the church experience beyond the church doors and invite people to become engaged in the world. The campaign seeks to offer the church, not as a place to come to and stay within, but as a base of operation for expressing faith by moving out into communities and around the globe.

The hope is to spark a conversation about what it means to live as a person of faith, a disciple of Jesus Christ, in the 21st century, and the objective is to answer the question - "What if church were a verb?"

Pastor Fablinger said "Prayer Lift 2010 is a creative and fun way to lift the love of God beyond the walls and pews of the church." "It’s a great way to involve people from all age groups in a festive event that helps us all realize there are many people outside of the church and our community who need prayer, who need to feel the love and presence of God, and to let them know we are praying for them," Pastor Fablinger added.

Attached to each balloon is a card proclaiming God’s love for whoever finds the card, and lets them know the people of the Oxford United Methodist Church are praying for them, even though we don’t know their exact needs. "We may not know anything about the person who finds one of these cards, but we know God does and we can lift them in prayer knowing God hears and answers the prayers of the faithful," Fablinger said.

Prayer Lift 2010 is one way we are 'reaching upward and outward with the love and grace of God' to our fellow man, Pastor Fablinger said.