Spaghetti dinner

Everyone is invited to a delicious spaghetti dinner fundraiser hosted by Boy Scout Troop 776 from 4 p.m.-7:30 p.m. today at Gulf Cove United Methodist Church, 1100 S. McCall Road in Port Charlotte (Gulf Cove). Tickets are $10; children 11 and younger are $6 at the door, or call Larry Davis at 770-869-5618 or visit the church office during the week. Proceeds will help the Scouts with camping trips and other events. For more information call the church at 941-697-1747.

Cookie Walk

United Christian Women of First United Methodist Church will be holding their sixth annual Cookie Walk from 10 a.m.-noon today in Fellowship Hall, 507 W. Marion Ave., Punta Gorda. There will be a large variety of cookies available for $8 a pound. All proceeds will go to help fund various missions supported by the UCW ministries and Women’s Circles. For more information, go to or call 941-639-3842.

Christmas events

The North Port Community United Church of Christ, 3450 S. Biscayne Drive, invites you to take your family Christmas photos at your leisure and to attend 10 a.m. Sundays in Advent. The church also has Breakfast with Santa from 8:30 a.m.-10:30 a.m. today. While having breakfast, the children can enjoy creating free age appropriate crafts. Tickets are $5 for adults, children 5-12 $3 and under 5 free.

“The Innkeeper’s Daughter” will be performed at the North Port Community Church United Church of Christ during its 10 a.m. service Sunday, Dec. 15. The church’s choir, under the direction of area musician Kimberly Campos, performs this upbeat, seven-song Christmas musical. With nine speaking roles, the Bethlehem story is told through the eyes of the fictional innkeeper’s daughter. Call the church office at 941-426-5580.

Breakfast with Santa

Living Waters Lutheran Church, 12475 Chancellor Blvd., Port Charlotte, is having Breakfast with Santa at 9:30 a.m. today. There will be cookie decorating and crafts. Parents are encouraged have a camera handy.

St. Vincent/St. Max mega sale

The St. Vincent de Paul Resale Shop/St. Max is having their Mega Sale today. The specials are: 50% off store-wide including clothing and boutique; Christmas 75% off, and books and CDs are 25 cents. Fill a plastic bag of books for $1. Every Saturday, jewelry and religion are 20% off and clothing is 50% off. The resale shop is located at 17753 Toledo Blade Blvd., Port Charlotte. The store hours are 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Tuesday to Saturday. Proceeds from the store directly support the St. Vincent de Paul Food Pantry.

Christmas Cantata

At the 10:30 a.m. service on Sunday, Dec. 15, “Have You Heard?” a Christmas Cantata by Joel Raney will be sung by the Chancel Choir and a guest soloist at First Presbyterian Church of Punta Gorda, 25250 Airport Road, Punta Gorda. All are welcome to attend and hear this joyous, inspiring work composed of known carols on Celtic melodies.

Christmas concert

A Christmas Celebration will be from 5 p.m.-7 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 15, at the Charlotte Harbor Event & Conference Center Great Lawn in Punta Gorda. Melodie Joy, Eirinn Abu and Manny Lopez are performing. There will be face painting and concessions. Bring chairs and blankets.

Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols

Burnt Store Presbyterian Church presents A Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols, featuring the Chancel Choir and special guest musicians, at 6:30 p.m. Dec. 15. The Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols is a special musical service. All are invited to hear and participate in the timeless story of God’s love and grace. For more information, contact the church office at 941-639-0001 or by e-mail to

Festival of Lessons

Gulf Cove United Methodist Church, 1100 S. McCall Road Port Charlotte, will have special Christmas programs of music on Sunday, Dec. 15. The Festival of Lessons & Carols program will be performed at the 8 a.m. and 11 a.m. traditional services, and at the 9:30 a.m. contemporary service. For more information, contact the church at 941-697-1747 or

Blood drive

The Florida Blood Centers will be collecting blood from 7 a.m.-1 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 15, at Burnt Store Presbyterian Church, 11330 Burnt Store Road, in Punta Gorda. There is a critical need for all types of blood during the holiday season. If supplies are not replenished it can lead to postponement of critical medical treatments. The blood center is pleading for all, eligible and new donors to donate as soon as possible. The thank-you gift will be a free blanket and a $10 e-gift card. It will also include a wellness check-up including blood pressure, cholesterol screening, iron count, pulse, and temperature. For more information, contact the church office at 941-639-0001 or by e-mail to

St. Maximilian Kolbe Christmas Masses

Mass at Dawn (Simbang Gabi or Misa de Gallo), will be held at 6 a.m. Dec. 15-23 (daily mass), and at 7:30 a.m. for Sunday services Dec. 15 and Dec. 22 at St. Maximilian Kolbe Parish, 1441 Spear St., Port Charlotte. Simbang Gabi or Misa de Gallo, “Midnight Mass” or “Mass of the Rooster” comes from the Catholic custom of gathering for the celebration of the Eucharist in the pre-dawn hours of each of the nine days before Christmas. This celebration is open to everyone. For more information, call 941-626-5046.

Advent Worship Service-Fulfillment

Faith Lutheran Church, 551 Rotonda Blvd. West, will continue with mid-week services on Wednesday evenings at 7 p.m. Dec. 18. Prepare for Christmas as we visit the city Bethlehem, (fulfillment) the theme for this week. All are invited to attend. For more information, call 941-697-3313 or go to

Quilters, knitters, crocheters needed

All female quilters, knitters and crocheters are invited to Christ Lutheran Church, 701 N. Indiana Ave., Englewood, on Dec. 18 for a day of fun from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. You may come and stay as long as you can, or stay for the whole day of fellowship and fun. There will be a morning break with coffee and goodies and you may bring a bag lunch. The group makes quilts that are sent all over the world with Lutheran World Relief and these beautiful quilts are used for bedding, floor coverings and wall dividers. If you are used to using a rotary cutter to cut material and have the tools, please bring them with you. If you don’t have them, we have extras. In addition to making quilts for Lutheran World Relief, knitters and crocheters create prayer shawls that are given to people in our community in times of need. If you knit or crochet, you are also invited to join us in this ministry, which means the first and third Wednesdays.

Blue Christmas Service

Not everyone is upbeat and cheery for the Christmas holidays. There are many reasons to feel blue: dealing with the death of a loved one, facing life after divorce or separation, coping with the loss of a job, living with cancer or some other disease that puts a question mark over your future. These and many other situations can make parties and joviality painful for many people. If you or someone you know is having a difficult time this Christmas season, please join Gulf Cove United Methodist Church at 6:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 20, for a special service of remembrance and hope. Gulf Cove UMC is located at 1100 S. McCall Road in Port Charlotte. For more information, call 941-697-1747, email, or go to

Service of Hope and Remembrance

For those who have suffered a loss — whether it’s the loss of a loved one, a relationship, security, a lifestyle or health issue — this can be a very difficult season. If you are in a place of sadness, or if you have experienced this kind of struggle in the past, you are invited to Burnt Store Presbyterian Church sanctuary, 11330 Burnt Store Road, Punta Gorda, for a Service of Hope and Remembrance at 4 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 22. For more information, contact the church office at 941-639-0001 during normal business hours or by e-mail to

Gulf Cove Christmas Eve services

Gulf Cove United Methodist Church, 1100 S. McCall Road in Port Charlotte (Gulf Cove) invites all to candlelight services on Tuesday, Dec. 24. The first service at 4:30 p.m. will be a contemporary service for the whole family. At 8 p.m., a traditional worship service will be held. At 11:30 p.m., partake of Holy Communion at a quiet, more meditative service. Please join us on this holy night. For more information, call 941-697-1747, email, or visit

North Port Community Christmas Eve

A traditional candlelight Christmas Eve worship service will be 7 p.m. Dec. 24. The Rev. Attila Szemesi officiates. Follow the luminaries along Biscayne. All are welcome. A punch and cookies fellowship hour will follow the the service. Call the church office at 941-426-5580.

Englewood United Methodist Church events

On Dec. 24, Englewood United Methodist Church Sanctuary will be decked with poinsettias for the Christmas Eve services at 4 p.m., 6 p.m., 8 p.m. and 10 p.m. The long-standing tradition of the congregation singing “Silent Night” by candlelight will close each special gathering. An early family friendly Traditional Service at 4 p.m. will draw the congregation closer to the true meaning of Christmas led musically by organ, vocal and instrumental soloists. At 5:30 p.m. and 7:30 p.m., Voices in Bronze handbells will ring carols in the main entryway before the services. The Family Service at 6 p.m. will have an exciting retelling of the Christmas story accompanied by the Fusion by Fire praise band, followed by Christmas worship music. At the 8 p.m. Traditional Service, Senior Pastor Vic Willis will deliver a special Christmas Eve message. Music will be provided by The Sanctuary Choir, organ, trumpets, harp, flute, clarinet, and timpani. The 10 p.m. service will have a special message that prepares everyone for Candlelight Communion, open to all who desire it. Enjoy moving music from organ, harp, trumpets, flute, clarinet, percussion, timpani, and vocal soloists.

Everyone is invited to just show up Wednesday, Christmas Day, between noon and 3 p.m., for the 28th annual, free community Christmas Dinner in Fellowship Hall. Takeout orders may be placed only on Christmas Day and in person. For dinner transportation or delivery to someone homebound, call 941-474-5588, ext. 253. Calling between now and Dec. 20 is preferred. Calls to that number will be accepted only until 11:15 a.m. Christmas Day.

For information only, see or call 941-474-5588 during office hours.

Burnt Store Christmas Eve services

Burnt Store Presbyterian Church invites all to their Christmas Eve services: 5 p.m. contemporary, 7:30 p.m. traditional; 11 p.m. traditional with Communion. All services end with candlelight. For more information, call 941-639-0001 during normal business hours or by e-mail to Burnt Store Presbyterian Church is located at 11330 Burnt Store Road, Punta Gorda.

Christmas Day meal

Port Charlotte United Methodist Church, 21075 Quesada Ave., invites all to the 34th annual Free Community Christmas Dinner, which will be served from 11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. Dec. 25 in the Fellowship Hall. Transportation will be provided for those with special needs who are unable to drive to church. For home deliveries, call 941-625-4356 before 3:30 p.m. Monday-Friday to request these services by Dec. 20. Those interested in volunteering with preparations on Dec. 23 or Dec. 24, or to serve on Christmas Day, should text Phyllis Crews at 941-916-6519 or email

Chanukah Festival

Hundreds of people are once again expected for Chabad of Charlotte County's 15th annual Chanukah Festival at the Port Charlotte Town Center mall at 6 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 26, near Dillard's. This year there will be a brand-new feature: “ The Gelt Drop.” “The Dreidel House” and “Juda Maccabee' will be back again. The evening also features Klezmer music by “Klezmania on the Gulf” in several languages. There will be delicious hot latkes and doughnuts, and plenty of arts and crafts for children. There will be dreidels, gifts for sale, a grand raffle and a children's performance. The event is open to the public free of charge and people of all ages are welcome. For more information, contact Chabad of Charlotte County at 941-258-0177.

Trinity Church Vacation Bible School

Trinity Church, 4285 Wesley Lane, North Port, is holding Christmas Vacation Bible School from 9 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Jan 2-4 for kids ages 3-10. The theme is "Shipwrecked." For more information, call 941-426-1734. If no one answers, leave your name, phone number and a one-word message: Shipwrecked.

Concert series

Burnt Store Presbyterian Church, 11330 Burnt Store Road, Punta Gorda, Winter Concert Series begins with Carpenters Once More on Jan. 27, Savannah Jack on Feb. 24 and the McCartney Project on March 23. Season tickets for the three concerts are $60. Single tickets are $25, and will go on sale Dec. 22, between worship services at the information carousel and from the church office on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 9 a.m.-noon. All performances will start at 7:30 p.m. Proceeds benefit the church’s music ministry. For more information, call 941-639-0001.

Goldtones tickets

San Antonio Knights of Columbus Goldtones concert is 7 p.m. Jan. 31, at the Holy Trinity Event Center, 24411 Rampart Blvd., Port Charlotte. Enjoy doo-wop favorites and Motown hits. Tickets are $15 at 800-838-3006 or

Coffee house

Sonrise Baptist Church, 11050 Willmington Blvd., Englewood, has coffee houses on the fourth Saturday of each month. The public is welcome to attend a time of food, fellowship and music from 6-8 p.m. The next one is set for Oct. 26. For more information, please visit the Facebook page or call 941-475-5363.

To submit religious news, email Submissions will be edited for length. Announcements will run on a space-available basis. To purchase an ad to guarantee a spot in the paper for an event, call Display Advertising at 941-206-1000.


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