St. Annis Primitive Baptist Church in DeLand and Rising Against All Odds are hosting a Holiday Bazaar 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 17. This is a free community event with free gifts, food and other giveaways.

There will be a “Kids Corner,” with face painting, crafts to make a personalized holiday picture or ornament, a storyteller with a short Christmas story, and a Christmas tree-decorating contest, with trees that families may take home.

Of course Team RAAO will be there to bridge the gap to health inequalities and awareness, along with the Volusia County Health Department, promoting COVID vaccine and booster shots, all for free.

The church is at 502 S. Orange Ave. in DeLand.

Exploring themes of faith in How the Grinch Stole Christmas

The community is invited to explore the faith themes of the Christmas classic How the Grinch Stole Christmas each Sunday in Advent, Nov. 27 through Dec. 18, at Orange City United Methodist Church. The sermon series will use the book The Heart That Grew Three Sizes by Matt Rawle at the 9 a.m. contemporary service and the 11 a.m. traditional service.

“Do you ever feel like you identify or even that you are the Grinch from the movie How the Grinch Stole Christmas?” asks Pastor the Rev. Ryan DeLaune. “This year, we will be discovering the true meaning of Christmas that gets lost in presents, parties and oh so many Christmas lights! As the Grinch’s heart grew three sizes as he discovered love, we will be turning to God’s story to find hope in the season of Christmas,” DeLaune added.

Orange City United Methodist Church is at 396 E. University Ave. All are welcome.

For more information, call the church office at 386-775- 3068 or visit the church website at

‘Christmas With the Bel Canto Singers’

You’re invited to celebrate the season by attending “Christmas With the Bel Canto Singers” at 3:30 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 4, in the sanctuary of Seabreeze United Church, 501 N. Wild Olive Ave. in Daytona Beach.

Under the direction of Dr. David Redman, the program will feature Conrad Susa’s “Carols and Lullabies – Christmas in the Southwest,” a medley of Irving Berlin’s “White Christmas,” as well as traditional, favorite Christmas pieces.

The singers will be accompanied by Dr. Alessandro Fonseca and Jessica Hairston.

Tickets cost $15 and are available at the door, from choir members or online. Visit, email to [email protected] or call 386-314-3314.

George Lakey to speak in DeLand

George Lakey, legendary Quaker activist and author of How We Win: A Guide to Nonviolent Direct Action Campaigning and a new memoir Dancing With History: A Life for Peace and Justice, will be speaking at The Dreka Theater (112 E. New York Ave. in Downtown DeLand) at 5 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 4.

From 3 to 6 p.m. Monday, Dec. 5, Lakey will be signing books at a Wine and Cheese Reception at The Muse Bookshop (112 S. Woodland Blvd., also in Downtown DeLand).

Lakey will be telling stories about what he has learned in nearly 70 years of nonviolent activism. His visit to DeLand is sponsored by the DeLand Quakers, who meet at 10 a.m. each Sunday at The Dreka Theater for coffee and doughnuts, followed by a traditional Quaker meeting for worship.

For details, call 786-208- 8617.

1st Christian Church activities

The Rev. Carlos Perez welcomes members and visitors to First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) of DeLand for the 10:45 a.m. Sunday, Nov. 27, service to celebrate their blessings.

Musician Barbara Polomsky and vocalist Donna Mozley bring praise to the service through music, prayers for healing and mercy will be given, and the service includes Communion offered by the elders to all.

At 7 p.m. Friday, Nov. 25, Essie Miller, Janet Raney and Tammi Stossel invite all bingo players to play the game in the church fellowship hall. Proceeds after expenses will be given to Second Harvest Food Bank.

The Disciple Women are starting preparations for their Trash and Treasures Sale, Friday and Saturday, Feb. 3 and 4. All sale proceeds go to various charities in DeLand, particularly those helping children.

1st UMC activities

The Thanksgiving holiday is past, and the countdown to Christmas has begun. As we enter the Advent season, First United Methodist Church of DeLand is starting the new sermon series “Roots.”

We all have roots, or a heritage that determines who we are and where we have come from.

“A people without the knowledge of their past history, origin and culture is like a tree without roots.” – Marcus Garvey

In keeping with Advent, the focus will be examining “Advent and the Family Story of Jesus.” Believers’ faith is rooted and grounded in Christ. You’re encouraged to join in as First United Methodist explores His roots and the significance of who He is.

“Family is like branches on a tree, we all grow in different directions, yet our roots remain as one.” – Anonymous

As the holiday season approaches, the church invites the community to save the dates of some upcoming holiday events: On Thursday, Dec. 1, the DeLand High School Choir will present a Christmas Concert and Lunch at noon in the Life Enrichment Center. The cost is $8 per person, and reservations are required.

From 4 to 6 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 4, there will be a Soup/ Chili Cook-Off coupled with a Make It/Bake It/Grow It Missions Fundraiser Sale. This is a ticketed event at the cost of $5 per person.

At 6 p.m., also on Sunday, Dec. 4, there will be a Family Outdoor Christmas Movie in the open field at the corner of East Howry and South Alabama avenues. This is a free event. Bring blankets or chairs on which to sit.

On Friday and Saturday, Dec. 16 and 17, a Combined Community Choir will present “Celebrate the Wonder, His Promised Arrival,” a Christmas choral event. The 7 p.m. Dec. 16 concert will be at the church at 115 E. Howry Ave., and the 3 p.m. Dec. 17 concert will be at First Christian Church/Trinity United Methodist at 1401 W. New York Ave. in DeLand. This is also a free concert event, with a love offering to be collected to benefit Florida United Methodist Children’s Home and the Wesley House.

On Saturday, Dec. 24, there will be three services for Christmas Eve: at 3:30 p.m., 5:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

To make reservations or for more information, call the church office at 386-734- 5113.

Buddhism, holidays and family, oh my

On Sunday, Nov. 27, First Unitarian Universalist Church of West Volusia in DeLand will welcome Sensei Morris Sullivan, local Buddhist monk, spiritual leader and teacher who shares his wisdom with the Buddhist community locally and the White Sands Buddhist center in Mims. He will return to First Unitarian Universalist to share some insight and answers to questions, like, What holidays do Buddhists celebrate? Are there traditional celebrations that are shared within the community and within individual homes? And, most intriguing, How would a Buddhist handle themself at family gatherings where their faith/beliefs are not the same as their family of origin (or chosen family)? If time allows, discussion may be included after every presentation.

The congregation and visitors, happily, will gather after the service for a social hour to share coffee, tea and conversation.

Those not wanting in-person worship can join in at home on Zoom at

For more information about groups, attendance and church activities, visit the church’s website at

1st Church of Christ, Scientist, activities

Having discovered what she eventually called “Christian Science” in the late 1800s, Mary Baker Eddy wanted to ensure that her discovery would not be diluted by “human hypotheses” or the interpretations of various individuals. To that end, she ordained the Bible and her textbook Science and Health With Key to the Scriptures as the only pastors or preachers in Christian Science churches.

Eddy made a list of 26 rotating topics for weekly Bible lessons that comprise the sermons in these churches. Of these topics, the one coming up for Sunday, Nov. 27, at First Church of Christ, Scientist, in DeLand, “Ancient and Modern Necromancy, Alias Mesmerism and Hypnotism, Denounced,” is likely to cause the most head-scratching among those not familiar with Christian Science. The Bible-based sermon explores a very simple and important concept: God reigns supreme, not matter or the methods popular in Eddy’s time, such as hypnotism and necromancy.

The Nov. 27 lesson uses stories from the Old and New Testaments, such as Daniel’s reliance on God to interpret Nebuchadnezzar’s dream, and Philip’s ministry in Samaria from the book of Acts, contrasted with the sorcery of Simon, to shine light on the supremacy of God, divine Truth and Love.

All are welcome to join DeLand’s Christian Scientists at 10:30 a.m. Sundays at 111 E. New York Ave. in Downtown DeLand. Testimony meetings are at 5 p.m. Wednesdays.

The Christian Science Reading Room, where interested folks can buy church literature, is open 11 a.m.- 2 p.m. Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday at the same location.

For more information, call 386-734-6547.

‘Journey Back to Faith’

Mosaic Unitarian Universalist Congregation, while not meeting face-to-face, is meeting online at 11 a.m. every Sunday. The Nov. 27 service is titled “Journey Back to Faith.” Join Minister Teresa Leary this Sunday as she guides everyone along her journey back to faith through a lens touched by spirituality, nurtured by Unitarian Universalism, and expressed by past and present literary figures.

Worship leader Judy Raymond will guide everyone through the service. Everyone is welcome!

For information on Mosaic, visit the website at For instructions on how to join the virtual service, email to [email protected].

What are we waiting for?

“… You do not know on what day your Lord will come …. So you also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him.” (Matthew 24:42 and 44)

Jesus is coming! Come, Lord Jesus!

At First Presbyterian Church of DeLand, Pastor Michael Bodger will lead the congregation Sunday, Nov. 27, in person, or by livestreaming or recording, into the Season of Advent.

Do we really want that? What are we waiting for when it comes to becoming ready for Christ to return? Scriptures exhort us to make sure that when Christ returns, He will not find us wanting. The world will experience no hindsight but rather like the children’s game of hide-and-seek, the cry will resound, “Coming, Ready or Not!”

If we stand ready, we can call out, “Come, Lord Jesus!” If not then, well … just be ready!

On this Sunday, Nov. 27, the congregation will worship at one service at 10:30 a.m. in the sanctuary to begin the celebratory and spiritual journey toward meeting, again, the Christ Child.

Following the worship service, attendees will come together for a potluck lunch, crafting and companionship in the fellowship hall. The church kitchen will provide lasagna and bread, and asks members and visitors to bring and share a side dish. (You’re encouraged to attend and take part whether you bring a dish or not.)

First Pres has been preparing practically and spiritually for the Advent Season for weeks. The Advent devotional King of Kings and Lord of Lords, created by the church congregation and friends, stands available for daily guidance. Also, the church contributed shoeboxes to Operation Christmas Child. The campus stands resplendent in the Advent colors and décor. Musicians are preparing marvelous melodies.

Of course, Bible studies and various church classes, meetings, and ministries continue, along with the special events of this season. Visit the website at for details.

Reminders of some of the December events include “Pajama Story Time/Bingo” at 6 p.m. Friday, Dec. 2; “Christmas Candlelight Evensong” at 5 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 4; and “Blue Christmas,” a service of love and remembrance, at 6 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 7.

Christmas Eve candlelight services on Saturday, Dec. 24, will be at 4 p.m. outside and at 6:15 p.m. in the sanctuary. There will be one Christmas Day service at 10:30 a.m. Sunday, Dec. 25.


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