SAL holidays

The Tamaqua Salvation Army is gearing up for its annual holiday traditions, including the Angel Tree Program and the Christmas Kettle Campaign.

The Angel Tree Program provides a season brightener for needy children who may not otherwise receive any gifts during the holidays.

Names of participating children have been written on angel tags, which are then placed on angel trees at participating locations.

Each Angel Tag provides the name, age, gender, clothing sizes and special Christmas needs/wishes of the child.

Deadline to return new, unwrapped items will be Dec. 15.

The Christmas Kettle Campaign will kick off on Nov. 20, at 10 a.m., at Depot Square Park. Volunteers are asked to spend two or more hours ringing the traditional bells at designated kettle locations.

Funds collected are used to support local needy residents in the Schuylkill-Carbon area.

For more information on either program, call the Tamaqua Salvation Army at (570) 668-0410.

TOPS

The local Chapter of Take Off Pounds Sensibly (TOPS) meets every Wednesday in the education room at St. Luke's Miners Memorial Hospital, Coaldale. Weigh ins begin at 6 p.m., followed by a short business session and a program.

TOPS is a weight loss support group for men and women of all ages. Members learn sensible nutrition, portion control and lifestyle changes that promote lifelong health.

Visitors are welcome to attend their first meeting without obligation, free of charge.

For more information, stop by a meeting or call Kathy Ruff at (570) 645-3059. Information is also available on the Web at TOPS.org.

First Methodist

The Rev. James Cavallero will officiate at two worship services this Sunday: 9:30 a.m. at Salem United Methodist Church; and at 10:45 a.m. in First United Methodist Church.

Activities in First UM for next week include: Tuesday, Quilters meet at 9:30 a.m.; Wednesday, Senior Choir rehearses at 7:30 p.m.

First Church will sponsor a Christmas Festival of Music, featuring Audrey Christ, the church choir and the Heidelberg Bell Choir. The event will be held Dec. 17, at 1 p.m. For information call (570) 778-3546.

Sunday school classes are being formed. For more information, call Celina Sagan at 668-3344.

The churches have combined to offer an outreach ministry to U.S. troops serving abroad by purchasing "Biblesticks," a digital audio device preloaded with an entire New Testament. For more information call (570) 668-3653.

Trinity UCC

The Rev. Dr. David Grant will officiate at the 10 a.m. worship service this Sunday in Trinity United Church of Christ.

The service will include words for young Christians and will be followed by a congregational meeting. Nursery care is available during the worship service.

Sunday school will meet at 8:45 a.m.

Zion Lutheran

First Communion will be celebrated this Sunday, during the 9:30 a.m., service, at Zion Evangelical Lutheran Church. The Rev. Jeffrey Kistler will officiate.

A reception for the 13 celebrants will be held in the gathering room following the service.

Sunday school classes for elementary age youth will be held at 8:30 a.m.

Zion's will host the Community Thanksgiving service, Nov. 24, at 7:30 p.m. The sermon will be ofered by the Rev. James Bechtel.

The public is welcome to attend.