- - -

Patricia A. Woodbury

As reported last week, Reverend Robert G. Schaefer, Bishop of the Florida Bahama Synod of the Evangelical Lutheran Church (ELCA) did preach at the Sunday, September 7 10:00 a.m. worship service at Joy Lutheran Church.

The service this morning was traditional with singing by the choir for the first time this season. There was also a small bell choir performance and a beautiful vocal solo.

Reverend Schaefer told the congregation that he wanted to come to Joy Lutheran Church not for any special reason but just to celebrate our partnership with the Synod and the amazing grace that we all our given. His message followed the Gospel of St. Matthew, chapter 18, regarding the discipline of the church. He remarked that some people are captive to sin and need a chance to be heard and forgiven. He said people are going to break out trust, as well as the church may also. The answer to this is to forgive in the church and in the world. The only thing we owe each other is love. He ended with the tag line from the ELCA, “God’s work our hands.”

It was nice to see the large number of participants in the congregation, this morning. It was also a nice surprise to see members of the Spirit Wings Biker Church, of Silver Springs, in attendance. Bishop Schaefer mentioned that his assistant at the Synod was also a biker and currently off on a road trip.

Pastor Jennifer Schaefer, wife of Bishop Schaefer, also attended this service. She is originally from Philadelphia where she met Bishop Schaefer when they both were in seminary. Currently Pastor Jennifer is an interim pastor. She did preside over the afternoon German Language Worship Service at 3:00 p.m.; and yes, she does speak some German.

Joy Evangelical Lutheran Church is located at 7045 SW 83rd Place at SR 200, Ocala. Joy welcomes all those who would like to attend the services at this church. For more information, contact the church office or Fran Johnson at 854-4509 ext. 221.

- - -

- - -

- - -

Patricia A. Woodbury

June 2012 marks the 10th anniversary of Reverend Edward Holloway, Jr.’s call to be the pastor at Joy Evangelical Lutheran Church as well as marking his 30 years since ordination. The congregation wanted to celebrate this event and held a dinner at the Palm Grove Auditorium in Oak Run on Saturday, June 2. Over 160 members of the congregation attended the dinner with guests Pastor Anna Figuerio, St. Matthew’s Lutheran Church, Pastor Ashley Nicolls, St John’s Lutheran Church, Summerfield and Pastor Jim Young, Ascension Lutheran Church.

Pastor Holloway came from Minnesota, where he received a bachelor’s degree from the University of Minnesota and his Master of Divinity from Northwestern Lutheran Seminary. He also served in the U.S. Navy. He was a pastor in a small Lutheran church in Monticello, Minnesota from 1982 to 1992 and then senior pastor at Zion Lutheran Church, Cottage Grove, Minnesota for 10 years before coming to Florida.

Joy Council President, Jerry Hollnagel greeted everyone to the not so very “Surprise Party” and thanked all for coming to celebrate a friend, confidant and preacher. Pastor Young gave the invocation to begin the celebration.

Sharon Hickman-Besch, Joy Associate in Ministry, Music developed and directed a Musical Toast of Pastor Holloway covering his life events from birth to the present. For his birth, the members were led in the singing of “Jesus Loves Me.” Then the Joyful Notes (absent one note) with Linda Aker, Trudy Harrsch and Ann Bellis, accompanied by Ardith Thomas sang “Think About His Love” for Pastor’s confirmation. In honor of his years in the Navy, the members all sang Anchors Aweigh. Warren Erickson, marked Pastor’s marriage in 1970 to Marsha by singing a solo, “You’ll Never Walk Alone.” The Joyful Notes Trio then recognized Pastor’s seminary years (1979-1982) with a song, “Life in Jesus.”

When Pastor Ed was called to Florida he initially had to move alone so he brought his dog with him for company. So the members all joined in to tease him with the song “That Doggie in the Window.” Pastor Ed has become known as the “piano playing singing pastor” which he often does at worship services. Irene Henderson devoted this song to him by singing “In My Heart There Rings a Melody.” Lynn Barrett, sang a “Simple Song” for Pastor’s future life. Finally the Joy vocal choir sang “The Lord Bless You” for the Benediction.

After a delicious meal catered by the Oak Run Caterers, there was a lot of “toasting” of Pastor Holloway. A member of the original Call Committee said that after interviewing many potential pastors she knew that Rev. Holloway would be the right one “just by the way he got out of the car” when coming to the interview. The Committee was looking for someone who would be an available minister to his congregation and a good listener and Pastor Ed fit those criteria.

One of the Stephen Ministers commended Pastor Ed for his initiative in helping to develop this ministry at Joy. Another said she had learned why Pastor Ed was patient and willing to wait because as he said, “God is in control, you wait because it is always in God’s time.” Others praised him for helping them through hard times, especially one who had a heart attack and heart surgery.

A new member said she was so impressed with how Pastor Ed does so much for a lot of people even when they are not members of the church such as, providing weddings and baptisms. Another praised Pastor Ed’s inspiring Daily Devotionals on the church website,

Pastor Ed was allowed to have the last word at this event. However he had to admit that he was quite overwhelmed by the many positive comments. He thanked his church staff for all their devotion and hard work and especially those who helped to put this event together. He said this was like “grace” to him and coming to Joy Lutheran Church was truly a gift.

Photos By Charles Smith

More than 160 members of the congregation and friends attended Pastor Holloway’s 10th Anniversary Celebration.

Pastor Holloway and Marsha enjoying the many toasts for his 10 years of service to Joy Lutheran Church.

The Joy Choir sang “The Lord Bless You” for the Benediction at the close of the Musical Toast to Pastor Holloway.

Church Council President Jerry Hollnagel greets the members and friends attending Pastor Holloway’s 10th Anniversary Celebration.

- - -

Patricia A. Woodbury

The Fellowship Hall at Joy Lutheran Church was very full and lively at the Bunco Party on Saturday, May 19. Over 50 people (men and women) attended this event for the purpose of raising money to purchase shoes for Marion County School children who are homeless. The funds raised through a free-will offering will be supplemented 50 cents on the dollar up to a maximum of $500 from the Marion County Chapter of Thrivent Financial for Lutherans. These monies will combine with the money raised at the April 28 Ice Cream Social and will generate approximately $1500 for the purchase of the shoes.

It was obvious from the chatter and laughter among these 50 plus people that they were there not only for charity but also to have a good time. If you have never been to a Bunco party (which was my first time) it is a hubbub of noise, social interaction and lots of movement. There were 13 tables with four players at each table. One table was the “Head” table that rings the bell to signal the start and end of a round. Each time a round is finished the players move to another table.

Round one starts when each player rolls the 3 dice to get as many ones as possible. The round ends when the “Head” table scores 21 points or gets a Bunco which is three of a kind of the number one. The players move to another table with a new partner and the game continues to the next number two, then on up to six.

One person at each table keeps the score for the teams and each player has their own score card on which their wins of either a game or a Bunco are tallied. This is just a few of the rules of the game, there are many more to be learned but maybe at the next Bunco encounter.

Prizes are awarded either in the form of cash that the participant’s contribute or, in this case, in the form of white elephant items that the participants donated. A special gift is given to the player with the top score and one for the player with the lowest score. Everyone will most likely get a gift since there were many donated gifts and the individual name tags had numbers on them which will direct who gets to choose the next gift from the white elephant items.

According to the World Bunco Association website, Bunco dates back to the late 1800’s when it was introduced into San Francisco during the Gold Rush period. Prior to WWI, Bunco achieved permanent placement as a traditional family or parlor game promoting social interaction. The game has seen resurgence in popularity in the United States, with a reported 27 million people playing regularly in 2006.

Bunco is a social dice game involving 100% luck, requiring little decision making skill with simple scoring and set of rules. So if you can roll 3 dice and count to six you can play Bunco.

- - -

Patricia A. Woodbury

It has been a few years since the women of the Joyful Hands quilting group from Joy Lutheran Church delivered their quilts to Legacy House, one of the facilities of Hospice of Marion County. So, on Monday, February 6, 2012, sixteen beautiful handmade quilts were delivered and received with great enthusiasm by the staff at Legacy House.

Legacy House opened in 2003 and has staff for 16 patients with a full capacity of 24 beds. It also has 60 volunteers who assist the staff in their work on a daily basis. Legacy House is just one of four patient care facilities that Hospice has in Marion County.

Jennie Halvorsen, Hospice Volunteer and member of Joy Lutheran Church has been instrumental in encouraging the quilting group toward donating to Legacy House. In the past, she has heard patients tell her that the quilts are so special because of the obvious amount of work that goes into their creation. Michelle, one of the Hospice staff nurses remarked that just because they are handmade and donated the patients feel they are a special gift. She said the some of the patients who enter hospice care early in their disease process can enjoy the quilts even more. She adds that the soft, comforting, eye appealing, warmth of the quilts are therapeutic, for these patients.

Alice Watts, Chief Operating Officer of Hospice of Marion County says she is pleased when patients are able to reap the benefits of hospice care early in their disease process and utilize their Medicare benefits. Their goal at hospice is to aggressively pursue comfort for the patient, so they do not give up.

The women of the Joyful Hands quilting group, who meet every Wednesday morning, have been making these bright, cheerful and beautiful quilts for many years. Recently they produced 167 quilts. Their works of love are distributed worldwide through the Lutheran World Relief program. They are pleased to be able to brighten the day of the patients in hospice care, locally, and see the joy it brings to the patients as well as the staff.

- - -

The Lutheran Men in Mission (LMM) of Joy Lutheran Evangelical Church continue to meet their commitment to the Department of Transportation to clean up their "adopted" highway stretch of SW 60th Ave between SW 95th St and SW 80th St. On a little cooler day several more men, then last time, showed up on Friday, September 23 to make a contribution to their community and help keep Florida beautiful.

Photo by Judy Olsen

(Back row) Al Olsen, Ed Hobbs, Ron Anderson, Jerry Hollnagel, Walt Padgett, Pr. Ed Holloway, Bert Adams.
(Front row) Ken Neal, Terry Couillard, Odd Bjerkmann

- - -

For information on any of the above events, please Call the Church Office.


© Joy Lutheran Church Ocala, Florida  -