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Start your Sunday off in a casual, low-key gathering where we share breakfast and chat about Jesus and life. Small groups for all ages – Nursery Available!
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“A little something for everyone and a lot of Jesus” is how we worship. Come as you are and experience our energetic, spirit filled service with moving messages and music ranging from contemporary Christian to traditional hymns.
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Teaching & Preachings

We teach and preach a Jesus that is real and authentic … Taken straight from the gospels with no biased or politics attached. Whether you’re an active participant or a “fly on the wall” listener, we have something for you.
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B I G  I D E A 
“The time has come,” he said. “The kingdom of God has come near. Repent and believe the good news!” (Mark 1:15).
Pastor Bob
C H U R C H   M E D I A

Recent Devotionals

July 2022

JesusStories 14c; July 28th

“JesusStories 14c; July 28th”.

JesusStories 14b; July 27th

“JesusStories 14b; July 27th”.

JesusStories 14a; July 26th

“JesusStories 14a; July 26th”.

JesusStories 13b; July 25th

“JesusStories 13b; July 25th”.

JesusStories 12b; July 21st

“JesusStories 12b; July 21st”.

JesusStories 12c & 13a; July 22nd

“JesusStories 12c & 13a; July 22nd”.

JesusStories 12a; July 20th

“JesusStories 12a; July 20th”.

JesusStory 11b; July 19th

“JesusStory 11b; July 19th”.

JesusStories 11a; July 18th

“JesusStories 11a; July 18th”.

JesusStories 10b; July 15th

“JesusStories 10b; July 15th”.

F R O M   T H E   B L O G

Recent Posts

“Smile and Laugh!”

I know what you’re thinking … that’s where Pastor Bob got that line. But actually, I prefer the term “message” to “sermon.” And I just hope that it’s not the title of next week’s sermon/message!

Every now and then I like to take a break from the more serious and refelctive articles and put some laughter and fun back in my heart. That’s when I run a series of “Pastor/Church Jokes” for our entertainment and enjoyment.

But before we go any farther, let’s share a pause … still our minds and calm our hearts … and allow ourselves a few laughs. Trust me – it’s good for the soul. And it’s a good time for some soul healing.

Finally, many of these jokes came from a website that I like a lot called Pastoral Care, Inc. It’s a great resource for our own healing and the healing of others.                                                                                                                                                 Website: www.pastoralcareinc.com

Now, enjoy!       

7 Good Jokes:

  • Forgiving Others

The preacher’s Sunday sermon was Forgive Your Enemies. Toward the end of the service, He asked his congregation, “how many of you have forgiven their enemies”?

About half held up their hands. He then repeated his question. As it was past lunchtime, this time about 80 percent held up their hands. He then repeated his question again. All responded, except one small elderly lady.

“Mrs. Smith?” inquired the preacher, Are you not willing to forgive your enemies?

“I don’t have any.” she replied. smiling sweetly.

“Mrs. Smith, That is very unusual. How old are you?” “Ninety-three,” she replied.

“Oh Mrs. Smith, what a blessing and a lesson to us all you are. Would you please come down in front of this congregation and tell us all how a person can live ninety-three years and not have an enemy in the world.”

The little sweetheart of a lady tottered down the aisle, faced the congregation, and said “I outlived the old hags.”

  • Rest In Peace

One Sunday morning, the pastor noticed little Alex staring up at the large plaque that hung in the foyer of the church. The plaque was covered with names, and small American flags were mounted on either side of it. The seven year-old had been staring at the plaque for some time, so the pastor walked up, stood beside him and said quietly, “Good morning, Alex.”

Good morning, Pastor,” replied the young man, still focused on the plaque. “Pastor McGhee, what is this?” Alex asked.

“Well, son, it’s a memorial to all the men and women who have died in the service.”

Soberly, they stood together, staring at the large plaque. Little Alex’s voice was barely audible when he finally managed to ask, “Which one, the 9:00 or 10:30 service?”

  • Pastor’s Wives Sewing

Two Pastors wives were visiting and sewing their husband’s pants. One wife said: My husband is just beside himself, he does not know what to do anymore and he is so tired and depressed he said he is ready to just give up and resign.
The other wife said: I am sorry to hear that because my husband has never been happier. Our membership is growing and we are out of our financial burden, we have such a large and loving congregation. Life could not be any better than it is right now.
One woman was mending the seat of her husband’s pants, the other was mending the knees.

  • Bragging Boys

Three boys in the schoolyard were bragging about their fathers. The first boy says, “My Dad scribbles a few words on a piece of paper, he then calls it a poem, they give him $50.00.”

 The second boy says, “That’s nothing, My Dad scribbles a few words on a piece of paper, he calls it a song, they give him $100.00.”

 The third boy says, “I got you both beat. My Dad scribbles a few words on a piece of paper, he calls it a sermon, and it takes eight people to collect all the money!”

  • Poor Sick Little Boy

Marty, a little boy, was in church one Sunday with his mother Doris, when he started feeling sick.  ‘Mummy,’ he inquired, ‘can we leave now?’

 ‘No,’ his mother replied, ‘the service isn’t over yet.’

 ‘Well, I think I’m about to throw up.’ Marty announced.

 ‘Then go out of the front door and around to the back of the church and throw up behind a bush.’ said Doris.

 After about sixty seconds, Marty returned to his pew, alongside his mother.

 ‘Did you throw up?’ Marty’s Mum asked quietly.

 ‘Yes,’ Marty answered, embarrassed.

 ‘How could you have gone all the way to the back of the church and returned so quickly?’ Doris demanded.

 ‘I didn’t have to go out of the church, Mummy. They have a box next to the front door that says, “For the Sick” ‘.

  • A Backyard Neighbor Funeral

Mr. Green peered over his fence and noticed that the neighbor’s little boy was in his backyard filling in a hole. Curious about what the youngster was up to, Mr. Green asked, “What are you doing, Jimmy?”

 Tearfully, little Jimmy replied, “My goldfish died, and I’ve just buried him.”

 “That’s an awfully large hole for a goldfish, isn’t it?” Mr. Green said.

 Patting down the last bit of earth, little Joey replied, “That’s because he’s in your cat!”

  • God is Left-Handed

Little Philip was spending the weekend with his grandmother after a particularly trying week in infant school. His grandmother decided to take him to the park on Saturday morning. It had been snowing all night and everything was beautiful.

 His grandmother commented, ‘Doesn’t it look like an artist painted this scenery?  Did you know God painted this just for you?’

 ‘Yes, ‘replied Philip, ‘God did it and he did it left handed.’

 This confused his grandmother so she asked him, ‘What makes you say God did this with his left hand?’ ‘Well, ‘said Philip, ‘we learned at Sunday School last week that Jesus sits on God’s right hand.’

 <>< <>< <>< <>< <><

HaHaHaHaHa! Holy God … that felt good!  

Pastor Bob <><

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“Losing People”

It’s such a paradox. I don’t think there are words to clearly descibe the emotions. It’s that deep bittersweet feeling of losing someone really important in your life, and also rejoicing in their personal victory over death.

Last week, 2 Very Loved People (VLPs) in my life here in Arthur, left this world, to begin anew with God.

Sandy Dolan: an amazing trailblazer of a young woman and a saintly teacher of God’s Word as an older woman. The number of people whose lives she touched and changed seems to be endless. I just happen to come along toward the end of her earthly life, but still I reaped all the blessings of her spirit for God and for children. And we are ALL Sandy’s children. Even now … or maybe even more so now … she continues to bless us all. After all, as Sandy’s children, we now have our own personal Sunday School Angel in heaven. And as hard as the loss of her earthly life is, we now have her spirit for eternity. Let’s apply it wisely.

Lucas Otto: one of the most happy-go-lucky superstars I’ve ever encountered on a ballfield. Lucas had the precious and rare gift of liking everyone on the team. And showing it! Does that sound simple or naïve? It’s neither. It’s difficult and profound. And it’s such a beautiful thing to be around … the way Lucas would joke around and share that great smile (one that I’ll never forget), not just with his friends on the team, but with every player on the team. He united our starters and upperclassmen with our rookies and subs. How? He liked them all … and he loved them all. Lucas was a gifted young man who never put himself above other players. He made friends with all of them. And that’s why so many opposing players and teammates of Lucas – are hurting over this loss. Let’s hold all of them, as we hold Lucas’s family – close to our hearts as we keep lifitng them in prayer.

Funerals are hard for me to attend. My heart breaks to be with so many heartbroken loved ones of the deceased, and the overwhelming expressions of love and gratefulness for one life. Funerals show our true nature – in the end, it’s all about the love, isn’t it? People have many names for funerals these days … for me, it’s more like a love-fest. I just wish we would have more of them for the living, rather than waiting till death comes.

Despite the sadness of losing people in our lives, people that we have risked to love with all we have, there is still, and always, light in the darkness. For everyone. Death is merely a human experience. Earth is the only place that it happens. Sandy and Lucas have left earth, and death, behind. They are free from all that would hold them back from God. And as Jesus told us, there’s a room just for us, too, when we leave death behind. And that day, like these past days, will be full of sadness for those left behind, but then as now, God will bring victory over death, and peace to His people.

Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted. (Matthew 5:4)

Pastor Bob Silvanik <><                                                                                                                                                                                                    

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God Bless Sandy Dolan

Perhaps you’ve already noticed. Sandy is still with us, and will be till our time comes.  Her spirit is all over our church, in every room, part of every song, within each of our hearts, and watching over us now, so that all our Vine Street kids have their own personal Sunday School Angel in heaven.


Here are some thoughts that I shared yesterday at Sandy’s service. 


Finding Sandy in the Gospels:


  • As the single woman who comes to the altar to present her offering. Of course, she came with children, and she gave all she had. Jesus told his disciples that she gave out of her own poverty. “She put in everything she had,” He said. That’s so Sandy …
  • As the sister of the “rich young man” who came to Jesus to find the key to eternal life. Jesus knew the man’s heart, and told him to sell everything he owned and then give the money to the needy. The man walked away sad, because he owned so much. His sister, however, did as Jesus said and one day inherited eternal life. That’s so Sandy …
  • As the woman at the well, who served Jesus water, and then discovered the meaning of “living water” – the kind He offered. When she drank of that water, she went to her village and saved the whole village. That’s so Sandy …
  • As the woman with the alabaster jar filled with precious oils, who intrudes upon men eating together so that she can anoint her Lord with the oil she has brought. That’s Sandy …
  • As the mother-in-law of Peter, who was ailing with a fever upstairs in her room when Jesus came by. He went up to see her alone; ordered the fever to leave her; and then He lifted her and she began to serve Him. That’s so Sandy.



As you can see by now, Sandy Dolan shows up all through the New Testament. In fact, I’m willing to go so far as to suggest that when 12-year-old Jesus stayed behind in the Temple to be with the scholars and experts in the law, I’m pretty sure it was Sandy in that Temple teaching the Bible to her young student.


Indeed, there is enough Sandy in the New Testament to establish a brand-new gospel …. The “missing fifth gospel has now been discovered – The Gospel of Sandy. It contains the daily situations and encounters Sandy had in our village, and how she and God walked through life serving God and serving people. It’s the Good News of Sandy Dolan!


The 5 things I learned from Sandy:


  • Putting “Kids First” can NEVER be wrong!
  • Never stop teaching the stories of the Bible.
  • Little things done with great love matter a lot!
  • Nothing compares to spending time together with someone.
  • Only when things are beyond your control should you miss Sunday church.


I’m wearing five love bands leftover from VBS this week to remind me of each one of these lessons. If I only make a little progress on 1 or 2 of these, I’ll still be carrying Sandy’s spirit of humility, grace under pressure, peacefulness, meekness and, of course, selflessness. Won’t you join me? I will have a basket of love bands on the front lobby table at church. Pick one up (or five!) for yourself.


  Have a blessed week … but treat each day like it’s the only one we have … love recklessly.

Pastor Bob <><         












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Bob Silvanik
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Address: 249 S. Vine Street Arthur, IL 61911