WHAT A WEEK AT THE NOVAKS!
This has been quite a week for my wife and I. We had a Winter Weather Advisory on Monday here in Northeastern Nebraska that quickly and unexpectedly became an Ice Storm Warning.
We did the farm chores Monday evening in freezing rain, and after we went to bed on Friday night we lost power. The electricity was still off on Tuesday morning as freezing rain continued to fall. The trees were bowed over covered with coatings of thick ice, with many branches down all over the property — some of them large. While doing the morning chores I was twice nearly clobbered by falling tree limbs, and we could hear branches cracking and breaking all day long.
Late on Tuesday afternoon we called the power company for an update and was told that the ice storm had hit the entire county very hard and lines were down all over the district. We were told by the power company that they hoped power would be restored sometime on Wednesday.
Needless to say, we had only cold food to eat and water to drink throughout Tuesday, and without any power the house became very cold, especially Tuesday night. We used lanterns for light and piled extra blankets on the bed. Thankfully, we managed to get some sleep, hoping that we would wake up to power. What we woke up to was an ice cold house, no power, and more broken tree limbs.
Breakfast and lunch on Wednesday were made up of cold food and water, but finally on Wednesday afternoon the power came back on. It was such a blessing to have heat and to be able to cook a meal. On Thursday morning we were able to enjoy a hot cup of coffee. What a treat that was! We have a lot of damaged trees with limbs down all over the property, but no pipes froze and we are doing well.
As many of you know, we live in a very rural and sparsely populated area. Our entire county has only 8,000 people, and our largest town has a population of around 1,300. Winter is hard on our local public power company and we often lose power. One year at Christmas time we were without power for three and a half days after a blizzard that left us snowed in.
We have plenty of seasoned wood on our property, and every year we hope to be able to install a simple wood burning stove that would provide us with emergency heat and allow us to cook a kettle of food or a pot of coffee. We have just not had the resources to do it though. Perhaps one day! In the meantime, we have gotten through another power outage that lasted from Monday night until Wednesday afternoon and are no worse for the wear. On the bright side, it has been a beautiful winter farm scene with snow on the ground and the ice coated trees glistening in the sunlight. God is good! To Him be the glory!
DANIEL CHAPTERS 8 AND 9
Last week I preached on Daniel chapter 8. We were able to briefly cover the entire chapter. This week I plan to cover the “little horn” more thoroughly. We will be looking at the little horn in both Daniel chapter 7 and Daniel chapter 8. The little horn is also known in Scripture as the antichrist, the beast, and the man of sin.
If we have time, I hope to begin looking at the prophecy in Daniel chapter 9. The little Book of Daniel is a very important one. Yeshua, Jesus, wants his disciples to read and understand this important book (Matthew 24:15). Although only 12 chapters long, Daniel has important prophecies in chapters 2, 7, 8, 9, 11 and 12. The Book of Daniel is central to the Book of Revelation and Daniel 7 is at the heart of the Apocalypse. I have already preached on chapters 2 and 7, as well as an overview of 8, and, God willing, my plan is to preach on all of the prophetic chapters in this sermon series. We still have some important things to learn about chapter 8 and the little horn. You will not want to miss this week’s sermon!
THE FAITH ONCE DELIVERED — Studies in the Book of Daniel, Part 2
This week’s broadcast of The Faith Once Delivered is the second part of our new series titled, Studies in the Book of Daniel. Last week we introduced the Book of Daniel and laid the foundation for our study. This week we will be studying the important prophecy in Daniel chapter 2. You will not want to miss this week’s broadcast!
The Faith Once Delivered Radio Broadcast can be heard every Saturday at 9:30 AM and Sunday at 9:30 PM (Central Time) on KCRO Radio, 660 AM in Omaha, and 106.7 FM in Lincoln, Nebraska.
Not in eastern Nebraska or western Iowa? No problem! You can hear The Faith Once Delivered radio broadcast live over the Internet. Just go to the KCRO website and click Listen Live:
All of our radio broadcasts are archived for your use. You can listen to any or all of our past broadcasts for free, any time you would like. You can access them here:
FOLLOW US ON FACEBOOK
New posts are made on the Holy Cross Parish Facebook page regularly. We hope that you will visit our Facebook page and check back with it often. Better yet, visit our Facebook page and become a Follower. Just click Follow. That way you will not miss a single post!
You can access the Holy Cross Parish Facebook page here:
OUR MISSION AT HOLY CROSS
At Holy Cross parish we are committed to proclaiming the Gospel of the Kingdom of God, teaching the faith which was once delivered in the first century (Jude 3), and preparing a people for the Coming of the Lord.
If a “traditional” belief does not go back to the first century it cannot be apostolic and is instead a tradition of men. The faith was not delivered in the 16th, the 11th, or even the 4th century, but in the 1st century. Come and join us in our journey to first century Christianity. Everyone is welcome.
Maranatha — O Lord Come!
NEBRASKA COVID-19 UPDATE
The Covid-19 pandemic continues to worsen in Nebraska, and in Douglas County in particular. Governor Pete Ricketts (who himself is in quarantine) gave a video press briefings on Monday of this week and again today. On Monday he issued a new Directed Health Measure that took effect on Wednesday, and in today’s briefing he explained the deteriorating situation and warned of even stricter health measures that will be necessary if the numbers of infected continue to rise.
The governor reported that on September 23rd there were some 200 people in Nebraska hospitalized with Covid-19. As of Thursday evening, November 12th, there were 905 people hospitalized with the virus — more than four and a half times the number just over a month and a half ago.
Today, one out of every five patients in Nebraska hospitals are there because of Covid-19. He said, “Hospitals are in serious condition right now” and warned that hospitalizations are currently increasing by 25 per day. He said that if we reach 25% of hospital staffed bed capacity with Covid-19 patients, and that means 1,170 Covid hospitalizations, we will have reached the “Red Zone” in Nebraska.
As of this coming Monday all inpatient elective surgeries that can wait for four weeks or more will be cancelled. If we hit “Red” we can expect even more restrictions on surgeries, restaurants, churches, and more — even home gatherings, whether indoors or outdoors — and at the present rate of hospitalizations that will happen before Thanksgiving. The governor re-emphasized the importance of wearing masks, social distancing, and hand washing.
Yesterday, KETV reported that,
“There have been 1,343 new cases of COVID-19 in Douglas County in the past 2 days.
A total of 1,343 new cases of COVID-19 that were received over the past two days, bringing the county to 28,742 cases since the pandemic began. The average in the past two days, 671, marks a new high daily case count…
As of the latest report, Omaha hospitals had 242 medical and surgical beds available for an 84% occupancy rate with 45 Adult Intensive Care Unit (ICU) beds available for an 85% occupancy rate. A total of 387 individuals were hospitalized who have been diagnosed with COVID-19, with 121 of them receiving adult ICU level care. Forty-three people who were confirmed or suspected of having COVID-19 were on ventilators.
'This really is the stuff that nightmares are made of for people who work in medicine,”
Dr. Kelly Cawcutt told KETV on Wednesday.
The infectious diseases and critical care physician spoke with KETV NewsWatch 7 after coming from the intensive care unit as COVID-19 cases spike in the metro.
"With these record-breaking numbers, that comes with record-breaking numbers of people requiring hospitalizations," Cawcutt said.
Nebraska Medicine posted a clear message about the state's hospital capacity on social media Wednesday.
"Rural hospitals are almost full. Metro hospitals will soon be unable to take transfer patients. What comes next? This shows the COVID-19 case explosion in Nebraska. This is a call for state leaders and for you to take more decisive action to protect our state.”
You can read the entire article here:
ON A HAPPIER NOTE — German Scientist Who Helped Develop Pfizer Vaccine Says It’ll bash COVID on Head
One of the scientists behind the prospective COVID-19 vaccine from Pfizer and Germany’s BioNTech said on Thursday he believes the shot can end the pandemic…
“The vaccine hinders COVID-19 from gaining access to our cells. But even if the virus manages to find a way in, then the T-cells bash it over the head and eliminate it. We have trained the immune system very well to perfect these two defensive moves. We now know that the virus can’t defend itself against these mechanisms,” he told The Guardian.
He hopes people who receive the vaccine will be protected against the virus for at least a year, but it is still unknown how long immunity will last.
Pfizer and BioNTech are on track to apply later this month for emergency-use approval from the US Food and Drug Administration, once it has the necessary safety information in hand.
You can read the entire article here:
KEEPING YOU SAFE AT HOLY CROSS
With the Covid-19 pandemic surging in Douglas County and throughout Nebraska it is important for us to review the health measures we have in place at Holy Cross parish.
If you have been diagnosed with Covid-19, exposed to someone diagnosed with the virus, have a fever, or any other symptoms of the virus you should not enter the building.
BEFORE entering the building please be sure that you are wearing a mask that covers your nose and mouth. You should wear your mask AT ALL TIMES when you are in the building, whether you are in the chapel, the parish hall or the sacristy. Masks should not be removed until after leaving the building. If you feel the need to remove your mask, please step outdoors to do so and do not re-enter the building until you have put your mask back on.
We have antibacterial soap in the restrooms, and hand sanitizer in two places in the chapel for our use. Please do not shake hands, and remember to keep a minimum of six (6) feet of social distance between households. Every other pew has been closed, but you will still want to stagger your seating between households so no one is directly in front or behind you.
Cheri and I are trying to set a good example for everyone. Although we are usually the first to arrive and the last to leave we still have our masks on before entering the building and do not remove them until we have exited. Even if you find yourself in the building with only one other person who is not part of your household please keep your mask on.
So far no one has become ill from Covid-19 at Holy Cross parish, and we want to keep it that way. By observing the common sense health measures outlined above we can continue to keep everyone feeling safe to attend Services, and continue to advance our mission of proclaiming the Gospel of the Kingdom of God, teaching the faith which was once delivered in the first century, and preparing a people for the Coming of the Lord. Thank you!
EVERYONE IS INVITED AND VISITORS ARE ALWAYS WELCOME!
Holy Cross is a teaching congregation. We take Bible study seriously and are a congregation of intentional disciples. Where else can you find such constant, and in-depth teaching from the pulpit, over the airwaves, on social media, in print, and by email? Believe me, it is rare. Holy Cross is very special!
If you want to be fed with spiritual food rather than milk, and want to grow in grace, in your understanding of the Holy Scriptures, in your faith in God, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ — Yeshua the Messiah — then Holy Cross is the congregation you have been looking for.
I hope that you will accept my personal invitation to join us this Sunday morning at 9:00 AM for Morning Prayer and a Sermon. Morning Prayer or Shacharit is our morning Service. It has its roots in the synagogue Services of Jesus’ time. It is an ancient and beautiful Service of Psalms, Canticles, two Scripture readings, a sermon, and prayer. Bring your Bible with you and be ready to learn!
We are a faithful and friendly congregation, and we have a place for you. We hope to see you soon!