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Time to celebrate Savior: LaVonne Ackerman

Posted 12/18/19

Hello folks! As we wait and watch for Christmas, I encourage you to fight the desire to make everything perfect. Perfection is an illusion, as no one is perfect. At our core, we must come to this …

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Time to celebrate Savior: LaVonne Ackerman


Hello folks! As we wait and watch for Christmas, I encourage you to fight the desire to make everything perfect. Perfection is an illusion, as no one is perfect. At our core, we must come to this conclusion: We are broken people.

We cannot fix this, but there is someone who is able.

So we wait, and we wonder about this time of year.

What is the big deal?

This is the celebration of a Savior, a delight in joyfulness. It’s not about a Hallmark Christmas spirit feel where everyone ends up in a snow-filled happily-ever-after town. It looks perfect and it may even cause you to try to duplicate their houses, all decked to the hilt. However, it all seems to miss the main point.

What is the point of Christmas? Why do we spread good cheer, give great gifts, think about those in need and show such generosity? Because we are full of the joy that is experienced when we recognize a huge gift has been given to us, for us. We are broken, but the rescue is here. This is why we sing “Joyful, Joyful We Adore Thee.”

Is this your experience? Are you living in a true joy state of mind? I hope you are, because the one who created us has come to live in us. This is something to celebrate! Immanuel ... God is with us! (Matthew 1:23)

I’m wishing you a beautiful week of waiting and watching and experiencing his gift of grace and mercy. And joy!


Happy birthday balloons are flying Wednesday, Dec. 18, for Angela Knaub of Lower Swatara Township. Have a terrific week, Angela!

Many happy birthday blessings to DJ Butler of Middletown, who turns 12 on Dec. 18. Have a wonderful Wednesday celebration, DJ!

Here’s a shoutout for a thrilling birthday, on Thursday, Dec. 19, to Rob Alcock of Lower Swatara! Enjoy it all week, Rob!

Happy big-deal 25th birthday to Anna Collins of Middletown on Friday, Dec. 20! Congrats and best wishes to you.

Chasey Baumbach of Middletown marks her Sweet 16 beep-honk-beep cake day on Friday, Dec. 20. Be safe!

Happy landmark 18th birthday to Dalton Brannen of Middletown. Congrats! I hope your Saturday, Dec. 21 is just how you like it!

Best wishes for a fantastic 15th birthday to Taylor Brady of Lower Swatara on the first day of winter, Sunday, Dec. 22. Stay warm!

Happy birthday greetings are sent to David Stauffer of Royalton on Monday, Dec. 23. Have a marvelous party day, Dave!

Lavi Gurm of Lower Swatara celebrates his special 22nd cake-and-ice cream day on Tuesday, Dec. 24. May your day be happy and bright!


Best wishes for a wonderful 50th wedding anniversary to Robert and Peggy Schlehr of Lower Swatara Township on Thursday, Dec. 20. Congratulations! Enjoy this special golden day!

Congrats to Jim and Kathy Blockus of Lower Swatara on Sunday, Dec. 22! They celebrate 40 years together, I hope your ruby day is cozy and warm.

Christmas Eve

All are invited to attend Ebenezer United Methodist Church, 890 Oberlin Road in Lower Swatara Township, at 6:30 p.m. Christmas Eve, Tuesday, Dec. 24.

Cozy Coffee Cake

1/2 c. butter

2 eggs

1 tsp. baking soda

1/2 tsp. salt

1 c. sour cream

1 c. sugar

2 c. all-purpose flour

1 tsp. baking powder

1 tsp. vanilla

Beat all ingredients in large bowl for 4 minutes. Pour one-half of mixture into greased tube pan.


1/2 c. brown sugar

1 tsp. cinnamon

1/2 c. chopped nuts

Mix together. Sprinkle one-half of topping over it. Pour in rest of mixture and sprinkle with remaining topping. Bake at 350 degrees for 55 minutes.

Quote of the Week

“Life can either be a burden and a chore, or a challenge and a joy. You get to decide.” — Anonymous

Question of the Week

Who or what brings joy to your life?

“My greatest joy is when I read my Bible and he talks to me. I can see clearly. My senses come alive!” — Wendy Weiss, Aledo, Texas.

“Jesus!” — Jacob, 9, and Anna, 7, Haggenstaller, Lower Swatara Township.

“Hearing laughter. I like to make people laugh!”—  Pat Rux, Lower Swatara Township.

“Watching our grandchildren really enjoying themselves, and laughing.” — Sue Lawruk, Lower Swatara.

“Grandma and Bebaw bring me joy, because they are my friends.” — Wade Clark, Connellsville.

“Doggies.” — Julia Killeen, 5, Camp Hill.

“Uhhhh, kitties! — Joseph Killeen, 3, Camp Hill.

“Christmas cards bring me joy!” — Andrea Zubey, Lower Swatara.

“My cat, my dog, and my school.” — Audrey Gatesman, 8, Lower Swatara. 

Proverb for the Week

There is one whose rash words are like sword thrusts, but the tongue of the wise brings healing (12:18).

Reach LaVonne Ackerman at 717-649-7366 or by email at