Matthew 2:1-12

1  Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judaea in the days of Herod the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem,

2  Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews?
for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him.

3  When Herod the king had heard these things,
he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him.

4  And when he had gathered all the chief priests and scribes of the people together, he demanded of them where Christ should be born.

5  And they said unto him, In Bethlehem of Judaea:
for thus it is written by the prophet,

6  And thou Bethlehem, in the land of Juda, art not the least among the princes of Juda: for out of thee shall come a Governor, that shall rule my people Israel.

7  Then Herod, when he had privily called the wise men,
enquired of them diligently what time the star appeared.

8  And he sent them to Bethlehem, and said,
Go and search diligently for the young child; and when ye have found him,
bring me word again, that I may come and worship him also.

9  When they had heard the king, they departed; and, lo, the star, which they saw in the east, went before them, till it came and stood over where the young child was.

10  When they saw the star, they rejoiced with exceeding great joy.

11  And when they were come into the house, they saw the young child with Mary his mother, and fell down, and worshipped him:
and when they had opened their treasures, they presented unto him gifts;
gold, and frankincense, and myrrh.

12  And being warned of God in a dream that they should not return to Herod,
they departed into their own country another way.


Wise men from the east went to Jerusalem asking:  “Where is he that is born King of the Jews?  Today, about 2,000 years later, many are still wondering “Where Is The King?”  If God blesses us to be alive on Christmas, let us be careful to explain to as many as possible that Jesus, the King of kings, was born in Bethlehem to a virgin whose name was Mary.  Explain that December 25th is a day that we recognize Jesus’ birth.  Of course, he is no longer Mary’s baby; instead, he is the King of kings who reigns in the hearts of believers.  As your Pastor, I wish each of you a Merry Christmas.


Have you seen our virtual Christmas Gala?  If so, I am sure you were blessed and enjoyed it.  If not, you still can view it via YouTube.  Thousands have viewed it already, so you do not want to miss this opportunity.   A special ensemble (chosen St. John voices rather than our Mass Choir) sang in our virtual Christmas Gala, and they did a great job!


A special Christmas Play, “A Delicate Matter,” (written and directed by Sis. Pamela Harrison) will premier virtually on Christmas Eve (December 24, 2021), and everyone will be able to view it via YouTube and Facebook on this date and thereafter.  Both (Christmas Gala and Christmas Play) will be prodigious and greatly publicized, so let’s make sure we view them and encourage many to do likewise.


The children and youth of St. John will be uttering Christmas speeches on Saturday, December 25, 2021, and thereafter.  We love our children, and we are very proud of them; therefore, let’s support them by viewing them online.  If you are on our website mailing list, you should receive an email enabling you to view them online.  You will also be able to view them by visiting our website at sjmbc.org.


If God is willing, we plan to begin Thursday, December 29, 2021, listing Scriptures to be read daily that will enable us to read the Bible in its entirety in a year.  These Scriptures will be listed each Thursday in this venue From The Pastor’s Desk.  I encourage everyone to participate with a goal to read through the Bible in a year and with a goal to learn more about God and His word; hence, plan to begin 2022 (if God permits) on the right track by reading Our Daily Bread.

I joyfully express my gratitude to so many of you who have already blessed me with Christmas gifts.  I do not take this lightly because people do not have to be nice and generous, so please know that I am very appreciative.  May God bless you with even more than what you have blessed me with, and may you have a Merry CHRISTmas and a Happy New Year.

Building Fund Pledges:  We still desire to construct a multimillion-dollar Family Life Center, adjacent to our current sanctuary at the North Campus, which will consist of a gymnasium, game room (for the youth), and weight room.  Many of us made a pledge that we fulfilled, but some have not.  I personally thank those of us who have already fulfilled our pledge and others who have made “Building Fund” contributions this month I encourage everyone (if you have not already done so) to participate financially as soon as possible in this building project by choosing one of the following tiers:


1)  $10,000.00 or more
2)  $5,000.00 to $9,999.00
3)  $1,000.00 to $4,999.00
4)  $500.00 to $999.00
5)  Below $500.00


Every Dollar Counts:  We need to close our year better than what we are averaging.  From now to the end of the year, each of us is needed to give generously in our Tithes and Offerings because we are on course currently to fall far from our yearly average.  Let’s demonstrate our love for God and St. John (at least for the remainder of this year) by being generous with your Tithes and Offerings.  Moreover, if you desire to reap a harvest, allow God to lead you to sow a special Seed Offering.  Giving is God’s way for us to receive more, for He promised to open the windows of heaven and pour out blessings leaving us with no room to store them (Mal 3:10).  We currently give in person during Sunday Morning Worship Celebrations, by mailing or dropping off our Tithes and Offerings at our Administration Building or South Campus, or by giving online through our website (sjmbc.org).

A New Way To Grow:  For 34 years, I have taught, as a Pastor, ways for a church to grow in person, but a new way to grow is now necessary due to the existing pandemic.  In order to be safe, St. John is currently utilizing 30-40% of our seating capacity (social distancing) in the sanctuaries of our North Campus and South Campus.  Consequently, we are now seeking ways to build our Virtual Audience through live streaming (YouTube and Facebook/Meta) and podcasts.  I encourage everyone to subscribe to our YouTube platform and encourage others (St. John parishioners and friends) to subscribe also. The larger our YouTube subscription the greater benefits we can receive.

Safety Protocol:  We currently have two Worship Celebrations (each is approximately 1 hour and 15 minutes) every Sunday:  9 a.m. at the North Campus and 11 a.m. at the South Campus.  We encourage everyone, especially people who are physically disabled, to arrive at least 10 minutes beforehand to be seated safely and comfortably.  Temperatures are checked, hand sanitizing is urged, social distancing is applied regarding where people shall sit and walk, wearing a mask is still mandatory (even though exceptions are now made in our county which began November 1st), utilization of restrooms is restricted to 2-4 people at a time (depending on the size of the restroom), and congregating before and after Services is prohibited.

Weekly Activities:  I strongly encourage everyone to participate in the St. John activities that benefit you.  In regards to each of the following activities, visit our website at sjmbc.org if you need more information.  What’s forthcoming?


  • Worship Celebrations at 9:00 a.m. (North Campus) and 11:00 a.m. (South Campus)
  • Online Church School at 2:00 p.m.
  • Online J.A.M. (Sessions For Children) at 4:00 p.m. (2nd and 4th Sundays).
  • Online Lord’s Supper at 7:00 p.m. (1st Sundays).  To participate, each believer will need bread or a cracker and grape juice (or something similar).
  • Preparation For Grocery Giveaway at 10:00 a.m. (South Campus)
  • Online Women Missionary Ministry (General Mission) at 6:00 p.m. (4th Mondays)
  • Grocery Giveaway at 12:00 p.m. (North Campus and South Campus)
  • Online Church Leadership Council at 6:30 p.m. (Tuesdays before 3rd Sundays)
  • Online Prayer at 12:00 p.m. and 6:30 p.m.
  • Online Church School at 7:00 p.m.

Many are still wondering “Where Is The King?”  Let’s make sure we address this question by informing people that he was born of a virgin, and he reigns within the hearts of believers.

May God bless and sustain each of us.

Your Servant In Christ,


Dr. Kevin B. Hall, Pastor