• Worth her weight in gold

    In the Old Testament book of Proverbs, the writer, King Lemuel, asks, “Who can find a virtuous woman?”

    If you ask the members of First Baptist Church in Chazzahowitzka, they would say they can. For this congregation at the edge of Citrus County, Phyllis Mills fits the description of the woman described in Proverbs 31.

    “She’s 83 years old, and her first word to anything is, ‘Yes, I’ll do it.’ We call her the Energizer Bunny,” said Mary Pelt, church member and church secretary.

  • ON RELIGION 2/6/2010: Denzel Washington talks about work, faith

    The first time Denzel Washington read the “Training Day” script, he had an intensely personal reaction to his character — the charismatic but fatally corrupt Det. Alonzo Harris.

    “I try to bend even the worst of my roles, like ‘Training Day,’” said Washington, the day after a press screening of “The Book of Eli” in Los Angeles. “The first thing I wrote on my script was ‘the wages of sin is death.’”

  • GRACE NOTES 1/30/2010: Faith that takes a licking and keeps on ticking.

    I spent most of last Sunday afternoon in my recliner chair reading about an overweight, out-of-shape guy who decided to go to Peru and hike the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu.

    He did it because he wanted to impress a girl who was also going on the trip. When he learned how strenuous the trip would be, because he didn’t want to weenie out in front of the girl, he started working out.

    A few months ago I joined a new gym, which is challenging me physically. I’m not training for a hike or anything, just a healthier life.

  • Methodists welcome former pastor to 125th anniversary

    The Rev. Tom Price, minister of the Crystal River United Methodist Church from 1960-65, will fill the pulpit this Sunday morning as the church kicks off the first of several special events to commemorate the church’s 125th anniversary of service to the community and to the Lord.

    Three church members, all over age 95, and representing the laity of the church, will be honored at a reception following the 11 a.m. service.

    The Rev. Price, one of the leading preachers of the Florida Conference, is tied closely with the local church’s history.

  • ON RELIGION 1/23/2010: Understanding how evangelicals talk

    According to a top strategist in the presidential campaign of Sen. John McCain, Sarah Palin believed that the decision to pick her as the Arizona Republican’s running mate was actually made by Almighty God.

    Translated into the logic of an Associated Press report, this political theology sounded like this:

  • GRACE NOTES 1/23/2010: Don't be a dumb bee

    I have a friend who loves bees. Last week she brought me to her secret place, a trail in a wooded area in a local park. Located on the trail is my friend’s bee tree.

    My friend comes to this secret place often. She said she goes there to talk to God, since how can you help but talk to him surrounded by all that nature?

    “Just look up at the canopy of trees!” she said as we walked.

  • JUDI'S JOURNAL 1/16/2010: Judaism goes green.

    Back in the days when I was growing up, nobody gave much thought to the environment or conservation of our natural resources. My first car got 15 miles per gallon on the highway, but I didn’t care because back then gas cost about as much as a candy bar does today.

  • Pulpit gets new blood

    The challenge of every new pastor is to find balance between old and new. First, he or she needs to learn the culture of the church, get to know the people, the customs and traditions, the power structure, the unwritten rules.

    New ideas may be welcomed or resisted, so a new pastor needs to tread carefully.

    An added challenge is taking the place of a beloved longtime pastor, such as the Rev. LaVerle Coates, who recently retired after more than 25 years as pastor of Faith Baptist Church in Homosassa.

  • A woman's journey

    "The Hills.” Lady Gaga. Hooking up. Texting. Sexting. HPV vaccine. Cosmo Girl. MTV’s “The Real World.” Magazine articles on “How to Snag Your Crush.”

    Dating. Abortion. Peer pressure. Eating disorders. Suicide.

    Christian girls are not immune to the influences that are out there, said Laurie Jalbert, president and founder of A Passion for Jesus Inc.

  • Find hidden gems at rummage sales

    Whether you call it a rummage sale, trash and treasure or something clever like “Granny’s Attic,” who doesn’t like a good “gently used” item?

    Add some baked goods and a hot dog or bag of popcorn and life is pretty sweet.

    Be sure to check the Chronicle for dates and times of many upcoming events.

    Mark your calendar for Saturday, Jan. 23, for St. Timothy Lutheran Church’s annual Granny’s Attic and bake sale.