The Spirit of Giving - Volunteering in the Community

volunteers working in soup kitchen webHave you done your holiday shopping? If the answer is yes, you’re well ahead of the rush. But if you’re like many, you’re just starting to think about facing the crowds at the mall. Or maybe you’re an online shopper. Either way, searching for those perfect items for your loved ones is time consuming, stressful and expensive. But if you’re willing to change your mindset, there are much more meaningful ways to give during the holidays. The key is to give without expecting anything in return. The Bible verse, “It is more blessed to give than to receive” (Acts 20:35, NIV), is quoted often during this time of year. Most religions support this principle, as does science. According to “Psychology Today” magazine, multiple studies have shown that buying gifts for others makes people happier than buying for themselves. A wise old friend of my family once said, “The greatest gift is the gift of time.”

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It Is Better to Give Than to Receive

better to give webThis time of year is perfect for reaching out to help those who are not as blessed as we are. Herein are several organizations that target needy families and people.  You can give of your time or money or goods.

Holiday Hope Chests
Volunteers needed to donate wrapped shoeboxes filled with age appropriate items for needy Lehigh Valley children. This program is coordinated by the Volunteer Center of the Lehigh Valley and can be a project for large or small groups, clubs, classes, families and individuals. To participate, visit their website ( and fill out a 2017 Donor Pledge Form. Filled shoeboxes may be dropped off at UGI Auditorium, 2121 City Line Ave., in Bethlehem from noon to 6 p.m. Nov. 28-30 or from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Dec. 1.

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This Fall, Just Get Outside and Move!

fishing1 webFall! It’s a great time to get outside and enjoy cool, crisp days and bright sunshine. You can try a new sport or activity or take up one that you haven’t participated in for some time. Walking for charity or biking with a team can give the activity an entirely different dimension. From kayaking to fishing to riding a tandem bike, here are some ideas for enjoying the outdoors now and in the coming weeks.

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Top Holiday Toys in the ’50s and ’60s

Mr Potato Head webHolidays are times for giving. We stuff our stockings by the fireplace, stuff our stomachs by the food pantry, and stuff our shelves with nativity sets. Have things changed over the years? Have we always exchanged gift cards for gift cards, cell phone covers for cell phone covers, and gift cards for gift cards? When you dove under the tree and shredded gift wrap to find a new treasure, what was that gift that most captivated you? Do you still have it? Have you seen it on Antiques Roadshow? See if any of these most-requested toys take you back.

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Things To Do With Grandkids in the Valley - Winter 2019

LehighValleyZoo WinterLightsSpectacular1 webWinter Light Spectacular
Bundle up and enjoy the beauty of nature as you stroll through tree-lined paths lit up by over 1.2 million twinkling lights and themed animated displays! Don’t forget your camera to capture the children’s delight when they encounter Santa, The Grinch, Woody, and many others! 5:30 p.m. – 10 p.m. on Wednesday, Thursday, and Sunday and from 5:30 p.m. - 10 p.m. on Friday & Saturday between November 15 and December 31, 2019. The event will be on break for Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Eve, and Christmas Day.

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The Final Roll Call

roll call webWe recently had the privilege of attending the memorial service for a man who served his Lord, his family, and his country faithfully and at great cost. Frank Ginther was a devoted father, Sunday school teacher, Staff Sergeant in the PA National Guard, and a member of the crew of the USS Pueblo, the Navy ship captured by North Korea in 1968. Frank was also long-time manager of our local Christian radio station, WJCS. As you can imagine, the memorial service was dignified, spiritual, and had that typical Christian paradoxical mood of sorrow and victory.

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