Category: News

Thursday Thoughts: September 3, 2020

Thursday Thoughts: September 3, 2020

CLICK HERE to see your Thursday Thoughts for September 3, 2020

Dear Congregation:

I know I don’t need to remind us all that we are in a different world when it comes to our life as a church and everything else. As we anticipate being in this time of pandemic for months to come, we are evaluating what is most helpful for keeping in holding our community connected with one another.    We continue to assess how we can continue our ministry and mission while keeping one another safe.

In-person worship on Sundays and at 6 pm on Wednesdays, outside on the patio, and robust live-streaming provides a variety of choices for worship.  We have a number of adult educational programs and mission outreach activities being planned.  Sunday School for children and youth will resume on September 13th via Zoom calls.  The youth group and God’s Kids’ Club are meeting regularly.   I am excited about the formation of a new youth group composed of 5th – 7th graders.

One of the areas that we are continuing to evaluate is communications with the congregation.  Thursday Thoughts and the monthly newsletter continue.  We’ve added the delivery or mailing of worship packets every month and the feedback we have received is positive to continue preparing and delivering those packets.  If you wish to opt out, please let Amy know.

Early in the pandemic, we added a Monday email blast to provide updated information people to pray for as well as building and activity news.    As the bulletins are printed  so many weeks in advance, the Monday email became a way to fill in the information gap between the bulletins and the newsletter.

I kindly ask that you please let me know or Amy know what you have found helpful in terms of communication and if there are other things you would like us to communicate with you.

I would like to add that one of the challenges for me, as your pastor, is that it is a challenge to go from interacting regularly with 150 + of you each Sunday to less than 30.  I have missed those face-to-face interactions.  Phone calls and email contacts are not the same but as we say over and over these days, it is better than not having contact at all these days.

I have been meeting with those of who feel comfortable sitting outside on your porch, backyard, or in Baker Park.  I’ve enjoyed some physically distanced walking with a few of you.  Let me know if you want to meet somewhere.

Feel free to call the office or send me an email if you want to have a conversation.
Further Note

The Central Atlantic Conference of the UCC will be meeting the end of September.  Here is a link to the agenda and program for the week — September 21-26.  

I encourage you to consider attending the meeting as it will give you a broader look at the UCC and how our conference works in our region.

The church has budgeted for our members to attend these meetings and events of the UCC.  If you are interested in attending, please let me know and I’ll register you.


Sunday, September 6 Bulletin

Sunday, September 6 Bulletin

CLICK here for the Sunday, September 6 Bulletin.

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Exodus 12:1–14 related the story of the first Passover as the enslaved Hebrew community prepared for an epic journey. It was to be a political journey, from slavery to freedom. It also was to be a journey toward community culture and identity.  In Matthew’s gospel in chapter 18, verses 15-20, Jesus offers that “true greatness” comes in the way we live with each other, especially in “reproving another who sins.”  Holding each other accountable before the community and before God is a great and hard commandment.

We will be sharing in Holy Communion this morning,  If you are worshiping at home, please prepare a plate with bread or a cracker and a cup or cups with juice, wine, or water as we share in the sacrament together.


Bulletin, Sunday, August 30

CLICK HERE to view the bulletin for Sunday, August 30th.

To watch the service on-line:

Sunday Worship

In Romans 12: 9-21, named in some Bibles as “Marks of the True Christian,” Paul writes a description of what the Christian life looks like. It reads like a list of instructions, and perhaps was written to offer advice to new Christians. In these exhortations, Paul calls the Christian community to put its faith into action. The imperative verbs give a sense of urgency to the community’s calling. Exercising love, rejoicing in hope, overcoming evil with good – all go to the heart of what it means to be Spirit-led.
A “call to faithful living” is a consistent theme in the readings for this Sunday. Exodus 3:1–15 narrates Moses’ call. It also serves as the call to the people of Israel to hope in God’s promise of a secure future.  In Matthew 16:21–28, Jesus calls both teacher and followers to discipleship

Sunday, August 23 Bulletin

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Worship Notes:
Paul uses the image of the Body of Christ in Romans 12: 1-8, to describe the community of those who believe in Jesus the Christ and follow in God’s ways. The Spirit forms this body through unique talents, or gifts, given to each person. When community values and nurtures the expression of each individual’s contribution, the bonds of kinship are expanded and strengthened.
Jesus calls out the faith and the gifts of the disciples in order to build the church. Matthew 16:13–20 invites consideration of the authority Jesus grants to the Body of Christ to be agents of God’s compassion and justice.
Add a pair of sandals to your worship center today as a symbol of the journey of discipleship.
Today we will have our annual blessing of the backpacks. If you are participating in worship at home, please hold your backpacks as we offer a blessing for another year of learning.

Sunday, August 16 Bulletin

Sunday, August 16 Bulletin

CLICK HERE for the Sunday, August 16 Bulletin

Psalm 133 offers the subversive claim that to live in unity with kindred – human and all of creation — is to experience the blessings of God.   A Gentile woman’s persistent and unconventional actions move Jesus to break down the barrier between Jew and Gentile. As told in Matthew 15:10–12, 21–28, her faith in God, who works through human activity, changes things for the better.

CLICK HERE for livestream

Sunday, August 9 Bulletin

Sunday, August 9 Bulletin

Click HERE for the Sunday, August 9 Bulletin

In Matthew 14:22–33, we read that the disciples are in a boat, terrified by a raging storm. Jesus comes across the water and saves them. Jesus is amazingly comfortable with the churning water, which the Hebrew people feared as chaos. The disciples grow in their certainty of Jesus’ identity God’s anointed one.
This morning we will be sharing in the sacrament of Holy Communion. For those coming to in-person worship you are welcome to receive the bread and cup from Pastor Daniel or bring your own bread and/or juice/wine. The sacrament will be brought to you while you are seated in the pews. If you are participating in worship via live streaming, please prepare communion with bread, a cracker, juice or wine or water. We will bless these gifts together and receive them as one community.

Sunday, August 2 Bulletin

Sunday, August 2 Bulletin

Join us for Sunday Worship at 10:30 in person or online. CLICK HERE to Watch

Sunday Worship
Isaiah 55: 1-5 is an invitation to an abundant life.

As Jesus is wrestling with the news of the death of John the Baptizer, he goes off to a “deserted place by himself.” The disciples, and then the crowds, follow. As told in Matthew 14:13–21, Jesus challenges the disciples to feed the crowd, and blesses the meager rations they have into abundance. This morning we are pleased to welcome Liam Cumber, Emma Davis, Sasha Hoffman, and Jared Hueting into the life of the church through the Rite of Confirmation.

Your worship packets included a wooden fish. Place the fish in your worship centers as a reminder of the abundance of gifts we receive from God. Maybe you want to paint it or color it with markers.

Sunday, July 26 Bulletin

Sunday, July 26 Bulletin

Join us for Sunday Worship at 10:30 in person or online. CLICK HERE FOR THE LINK

Sunday Worship

Romans 8:26–39 offers strong words of comfort for all who suffer and who see little concrete evidence for hope. The encouragement is to never give up because even in our weakness the Holy One is there to strengthen us with a love from which we can never be separated. Matthew 13:31–33, 44–52 gives testimony to the often hidden and subtle power of the Realm of God at work in our lives and world. The parables tell that the reality of God’s realm is at work now, and we are called to decide if this is the realm in which we choose to live.

During the Thought for the Day, we will be sharing in a blessing of the Bibles.

Sunday, July 19 Bulletin

Sunday, July 19 Bulletin

Join us for worship on Sunday, July 19 at 10:30 a.m. at 

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July 19                       

In Romans 8:12–25, Paul demonstrates the relationality of God and God’s people through the language of adoption. God offers believers a new familial structure in which they are rightful heirs to God’s realm.   One in a series of parables about the reign of God, Jesus’ teaching in Matthew 13:24–30, 36–43 invites hope-filled trust in God. There is mystery in how God plants, nurtures, and weeds to secure a harvest of promise.