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Church Briefs

WOODLEAF ó Unity Presbyterian Church will celebrate its 220th anniversary with a homecoming event Sunday.
A former pastor, the Rev. Dr. David Henry, will preach at the 11 a.m. service.
The event will begin with registration and a social hour at 9:30 a.m. Special singing will be featured in the sanctuary at 10:30 a.m., with music by “children of Unity,” who are visiting. Singers include David, Danny and Donald Dameron, Melanie Allred Jordan, Ashley Parnell, Carla Kluttz and Cindy Kistler.
Following the 11 a.m. worship, a covered dish lunch will be held in the picnic shelter in the church yard.
Unity Church was founded in 1788, and the present sanctuary was erected in 1847. The Rev. Dr. Henry served Unity Church from 1981 until 1991. He is currently associate pastor of First Presbyterian Church in Jefferson City, Mo.
The Rev. Jennie Hemrick is interim pastor of Unity.
St. Luke homecoming
St. Luke Baptist Church, 410 Hawkinstown Road, will hold its annual homecoming service Sunday at 11 a.m. and 3 p.m.
St. Luke’s pastor, Arthur L. Heggins, will bring the morning message. Lunch is planned for 1:30 p.m.
The Rev. Paul Jones, pastor of New Zion Baptist Church, located on Dunn’s Mountain Road, will be the guest minister for the afternoon service.
Also, annual revival services will start on Monday and continue through Friday, beginning at 7 p.m. nightly. Bishop Derek D. Kelly of New Faith Full Gospel Fellowship Center in Lexington will be the evangelist for the week.
Youth Olympic Day
First Calvary Baptist Church, 400 S. Long St., will sponsor a Youth Olympic Day 10 a.m.-2 p.m. today.
The event is open to the public and will feature sports activities, games and refreshments. It is a project of the Men’s Fellowship.
The Rev. Leamon E. Brown is pastor.
For more information, call 704-633-2818.
New Bethel Baptist
MOCKSVILLE ó New Bethel Baptist Church will observe the fifth anniversary of its pastor, the Rev. William Cowan and his wife, Cherry Cowan, this Sunday.
Pastor Cowan will preach for the 11 a.m. service. Lunch will be served at 1:30 p.m.
The speaker for the 3 p.m. service will be the Rev. Ervin Hannah, pastor of Erwin Temple CME Church, Woodleaf. He will be accompanied by his choir and congregation.
The Rev. and Mrs. Cowan are both graduates of New Hope Bible College in Winston-Salem. They live in Lexington and have two children.
The church is located on U.S. 601 S. in Mocksville.
VBS in China Grove
CHINA GROVE ó First Baptist Church of China Grove is setting sail for Outrigger Island™ for Vacation Bible School.
Children 3 years of age through 6th grade are admitted free of charge this Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. until 12:15 p.m. Activities include Bible stories, crafts, music, snacks and Recreation Reef.
Youth from grades 7-12 can experience “Unshakeable” with Bible study and special activities planned just for them on Wednesday from 6:30-8 p.m. and Thursday and Friday from 6-8 p.m.
The week’s events are open to everyone.
Call 704-857-5415 or visit www.chinagrovefbc.com for more information and to pre-register.
Salem Lutheran
Salem Lutheran Church on Sherrills Ford Road will dedicate a new prayer trail after the 10:30 a.m. worship service Sunday.
The prayer trail was completed as an Eagle Scout project by Thomas Hester and will be dedicated in memory of his great-grandmother, Allie G. Shulenburger.
The trail winds through the woods on the west side of the church’s picnic shelter. Stations are set along the way with benches and devotional materials.
Also during the service, recipients of the Shulenburger scholarships will be announced. The Hubert and Allie Shulenburger Scholarships are made available each year to members of Salem who are in college.
Trinity Presbyterian
Trinity Presbyterian Church, 300 S. Caldwell St., will celebrate its 141st anniversary Sunday at 11 a.m.
The theme for this year is “A Church Surviving in a Changing World.”
Timothy L. Bates will be the speaker for this year’s anniversary. He the third son from Trinity to go into the ministry.
Trinity’s son, the Rev. Sidney Davis, was speaker in 2006. The Rev. George Goodman was speaker in 2007.
Bates is the son of Annie Miller Bates and the late George W. Bates. He is married to Yvette Hargrave Bates, the father of five children and one grandchild.
He is a graduate of Catawba College and earned a master of divinity from Hood Theological Seminary. He is currently supplying Calvary Presbyterian Church in Statesville.
Bates is also a counselor for the Adolescent Family Enrichment Center.
Lunch will follow the morning service.
Luther’s Lutheran
Luther’s Lutheran will hold vacation Bible school July 26 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
The theme this year is Noah’s Ark. There will be classes available for all ages (including adults), games, music, arts and crafts and a hot dog lunch. Everyone is welcome to attend.
Luther’s Lutheran Church is located at the corner of Stokes Ferry and Richfield roads.
For more information, contact Pastor Carol Yeager at 704-754-6287 or the church at 704-279-4974.
First UCC VBS
First United Church of Christ, 207 W. Horah St., will hold its vacation Bible school, 5:30-8:30 p.m. this Sunday through Thursday.
The theme is “God’s Big Backyard.” Teams will be available for all ages.
All present will have a light supper together, followed by “Backyard Bash.” Children who have not yet attended kindergarten will be on the Preschool Team. Children who finished grades K-5 will be in teams which rotate through stations of the Backyard Bible Club, the Clothesline Creations, the Community Corner and Backyard Food and Fun.
Adults and youth will be helpers or involved in the Backyard Adult Team Bible Study led by the Rev. Michael Childress, pastor.
All are welcome but are asked to register by calling 704-633-2723 and leaving name and number attending.
Love Christian CenterEAST SPENCER ó A Miracle and Healing Revival will be held Wednesday through Friday at Love Christian Center, 102 S. Long St., East Spencer. Services will begin at 7:30 p.m. each night.
The evangelist will be Dr. T.L. Penny from Greeleyville, S.C., who also conducted a revival this past May at Love Christian Center. Penny is pastor and founder of Shubach Deliverance World Ministries in Sumter, S.C., and Victory Temple Church Inc. in Greeleyville. She holds a doctorate of human letters and a divinity degree.
For more information, call 704-433-1341 or visit www.tlpennyministries.com.
Open Door Outreach
EAST SPENCER ó Open Door Outreach Deliverance Christian Ministries, 211 Correll St., East Spencer, is celebrating its seventh anniversary with guest speakers during the coming week.
Speakers are as follows: 11 a.m., Sunday: Elder David Brintley, Bethlehem Temple of Grover; 5 p.m., Sunday: Bishop Randy Smith, Greater Hopewell, Gastonia; 7:30 p.m., Monday: Minister Sheila Chambers, New Smith Chapel, Salisbury; 7:30 p.m., Tuesday: Pastor Ruby Howell, Chosen Church, Woodleaf; 7:30 p.m., Wednesday: Overseer Shirley Lane, Warriors Outreach, Spencer; 7:30 p.m., Thursday: Bishop Cassandra Dowdy of Salisbury; 7:30 p.m., Friday: Pastor Bessie Howell, Love Divine, Charlotte; 7:30 p.m., July 26: guest speaker to be announced; 11 a.m. and 3 p.m., July 27: Carla Platt, co-pastor of Open Door.
Karen Miller-Foxx is pastor of Open Door.
For more information, call 704-314-6998.
Victory Baptist
CHINA GROVE ó Victory Baptist Church in China Grove will celebrate homecoming this Sunday.
The Rev. Mark Moore, pastor of Center Baptist Church in Candor, will sing and bring the morning message. A meal will follow the 11 a.m. service.
The church has been organized two years. It is located at 118 W. Centerview St. in China Grove.
New Hope Baptist
New Hope Baptist Church, 830 Choate Road, extends an invitation to the public to attend Junior Vacation Bible School this Sunday through Thursday for ages 3 to 12.
Beginning each night at 6:15 and ending at 8:30, children will enjoy Bible lessons, food, crafts, puppet shows and games with an Olympic theme.
For questions or transportation, call 704-633-2107.
World of Hope
On Aug. 9, the ministries of World Hope Worship Center will have four teams volunteering at different sites, each with a different challenge.
Project HeadStart will be working with two HeadStart schools: Salisbury and China Grove. Members will be building cubbies for Salisbury and a handicap ramp for China Grove, and they will be raising funds to go toward handicap-accessible playground equipment. They plan to cap the afternoon of “cleanup” with a cookout and outdoor concert.
Project Hispano will be hosting a block party for the community on N.C. 150. Members plan to give a bag of groceries to each family and a backpack filled with school supplies to each elementary-age child. Their party will include food, games, prizes, clowns and music.
Project Nazareth will be working with the Nazareth Children’s Home to provide a “Back to School” party, Skate Night and dinner on Aug.9. Members will also be giving a backpack filled with school supplies and a new pair of shoes to each student.
Project Playtime has been in contact with city leaders to find out the needs of the Lincoln Park Pool. Members will be raising funds throughout the month and working toward a variety of projects.
World Hope Worship Center is located at 2203 Mooresville Road, 704-636-9159.
Bishop elected
LAKE JUNALUSKA ó The Rev. Paul Leeland of Garner, who began his ministry as a pastor of three rural churches in the early 1970s, has been elected a bishop of the United Methodist Church.
The election was announced this week during a meeting of the denomination’s Southeastern Jurisdiction at Lake Junaluska.
Leeland, 59, serves as assistant to the bishop of the Raleigh Episcopal Area and is director of ministerial relations in the North Carolina Conference, which includes churches in 56 eastern counties. He will fill the vacancy created in the denomination’s Southeastern Jurisdiction College of Bishops by the retirement of Bishop J. Lawrence McCleskey of the Charlotte Episcopal Area.
In the U.S., the United Methodist Church is divided into five regional areas known as jurisdictions. Jurisdictional conferences are held every four years, primarily for the purpose of electing and assigning bishops. Endorsed by the North Carolina Conference, Leeland was elected on the sixth ballot, receiving 298 of 498 votes cast.
Leeland will become one of 13 active bishops serving the episcopal areas in the Southeastern Jurisdiction, which covers Kentucky, Tennessee, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi and Florida.
An episcopal assignment committee is considering where Leeland and other active bishops will serve for the next four years. Their assignments will be effective Sept. 1. Leeland cannot be appointed to his home conference for at least four years.
A consecration service for the new bishop will be held at 10:30 a.m. today in Stuart Auditorium at Lake Junaluska.
Leeland has previously served as pastor at St. Andrews United Methodist Church in Raleigh, Westminster United Methodist Church in Kinston and St. Luke United Methodist Church in Sanford. He is a former district superintendent and has a doctorate in education from North Carolina State University and master’s degrees in theology and divinity from Duke Divinity School.
A United Methodist bishop in the United States is elected for life, and although eight years is the standard term for a bishop to serve in an episcopal area, it is not unusual for a bishop to be assigned to one area for 12 years.

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