Week of May 1, 2016

Sunday May 1, 2016

10:00 AM – Family Worship & Nursery

10:15 – Church School


May we have communion with God in the secret of our hearts, and find Him to be to us as a little sanctuary.       Charles Spurgeon, British preacher and author


 

Please join us in the Fellowship Hall for Coffee Hour.  It is being hosted by the Outreach Committee.


GREETERS:

Tony Calzone and Luanne Smith

LAY LEADER:

Karl Kregling

DEACON OF THE MONTH:

Catlins and Kreglings

11:00 AM – Bell Choir – Come ring with us!  All ages welcome!

11:30 AM – Adult Choir

5:00-7:00 PM – Confirmation Class

 


Chasing Fullness

The crowd continued to follow Jesus the day after Jesus performed a miracle by feeding thousands of hungry people with the five loaves and two fish, not because they were hungry, but they were hoping for another miracle.  They were driven by a need for fullness; it seems they were chasing fullness as there never seemed to be enough.  It is in this context that Jesus speaks to the multitude saying, “I am the bread of life.  Whoever comes to me will never be hungry, and whoever believes in me will never by thirsty.” (John 6: 35)

In saying, “I am the bread of life”, Jesus is in effect telling us; “I don’t want you to spend your life just chasing fullness.  I want to offer satisfaction, no matter what the circumstances are.  I want to give you contentment and peace. I can provide that. Let me be your source of joy, so that no matter where you are, you are, you can say, right now is a good day, Life is good.  I am blessed.”

Through communion we celebrate our nearness to the spirit of Jesus in the partaking of the bread of life and the cup of the new covenant.  In this way, communion is not so much about the remembering the One who has gone before us but about celebrating the One who is always with us.   The beautiful hymn Here O My Lord, by Horatius Bonar (1855) speaks about this celebration; “Too soon we rise; the symbols disappear; the feast, though not the love is past and gone.  The bread and wine remove; but Thou art here, nearer than ever, still my shield and sun.”

 Blessings, Pastor Allyson

Weekly Prayer

Christ be with me, Christ within me,

Christ behind me, Christ before me,

Christ beside me, Christ to win me,

Christ to comfort and restore me,

Christ beneath me, Christ in danger,

Christ in hearts of all that all that love me,

Christ in mouth of friend and stranger.

~Attributed to – St Patrick’s Breastplate Prayer (9th Century)


THIS WEEK

Monday, May 2 4:00 PM Weight Watchers

Tuesday, May 3 6:15 PM GS #135

Thursday, May 5 6:30 PM GS #135 Leader Mtg.

Friday, May 6 8:00 PM Eastern Star


ANNOUNCEMENTS

Save the Date:

May 15 – Confirmation Sunday

May 22 at 4:00 PM – Pastor Allyson’s Installation, Reception following

 

 

SCHOLARSHIP

Scholarship informational meetings will be held at the church in the gym  on Tuesday, June 7th at 7:00 p.m. and Sunday, June 5th  at 11:30   Both a parent and the student applicant (new applicants and those reapplying) must attend one of these mandatory meetings.  Applications will be given to the candidates after attendance of one of these meetings.

The Scholarship Committee of the Seymour Congregational Church is empowered to award funds to qualified scholarship candidates from two distinct funds.  The Pittis Fund, the larger of the two funds, is restricted to those candidates who will attend or are attending, on a full-time basis, an accredited four-year college or university for the purpose of obtaining an undergraduate degree.  The Common Fund is an unrestricted fund, which may be used for awarding scholarships for any form of advanced education.

Applicants are eligible for awards if they are members or children of members of the Seymour Congregational Church.  At this meeting, scholarship committee members will explain expectations, requirements and important information for the families to understand before applying for a scholarship.

The amount of the awards is influenced by the number of applicants and the amount of income available from the trust funds, which support the scholarship program.

If you have any questions, speak to Laura Thompson or Karen Baker, Scholarship Committee.

 

Carriers for Foster Kids:

Gently used tote bags, backpacks, overnight bags or duffle bags are needed in a New Haven Foster Care facility.

The children that are brought into the system generally have only the clothes on their backs until they are placed and then they carry their belongings in garbage bags.

Other items that are needed are toiletries like toothbrushes, toothpaste, deodorant, shampoo, and soap. (conditioner, powder, combs and brushes too)

They will also accept hats, scarves and gloves, but with the warmer weather coming, perhaps those things can wait until Fall.

Please see Kim Walsh  to arrange pick up or drop off of any items that you are willing to donate to this cause.

 

 TAG SALE ~ SATURDAY, MAY 14th

  8 A.M. – 2 P.M.

We are part of the “Town Wide Tag Sale”, so grab a flyer the morning of the sale and shop till you drop all around Seymour! Thank you for the items generously donated so far (please put your items marked for “tag sale” in the gym – NO clothing, please). Please note: the last night to drop off any items is Wednesday, May 11th! We also have 4 members (2 inside, 2 outside, so far) who have rented tables, so be sure to check their items too! Help will be needed during the week of May 9th  (That’s a week from Monday! ~ Mon-Thurs, about 5:30 – 8 p.m.) to move tables and bring out the boxes from the back room. Donations of baked goods are also appreciated and can be dropped off on Friday (from 2 – 6 pm) or before the sale Saturday morning – be sure to have pre-packaged, pre-priced (if possible), and marked if it contains nuts. See Laura if you would like to volunteer ~ we can always use extra help, especially at the end of the day when it’s time to pack up before the trucks come from Helping Hands. Also, please park in the grass parking lot and wear name tags and tee-shirts if you have them! (P.S. Bring more baskets for the raffle, too, if you have them ready, as we will have someone on hand to sell tickets).

The 19th Annual Walk for the Hungry and Homeless

To benefit Spooner House/The valley Food Bank –

Saturday, May 21st

8:30 AM – Registration, 9:00 AM –Start

Where:  Derby Greenway (Division St. Entrance)

Minimum $20 donation receives a free event t-shirt

Nancy Cretella will have flyers to hand out at Coffee Hour on Sunday with more information.

 Veterans Appreciation Concert 2016

Presented by The Connecticut Hurricanes Drum & Bugle Corps

Emil Senger Post 10 American Legion and VFW Post 12084

Seymour Middle School Auditorium | 211 Mountain Rd. Seymour, CT

Saturday, April 30, 2016 at 6:30 PM

 Admission is $10 – Tickets available at:

BALANCE, 1 Klarides Dr., Seymour, CT (203)888-8983

Emil Senger American Legion Post 10, Seymour, CT – George Bashura (203)-305-3821

St. Michæl’s Catholic War Veterans Post 1562, Derby, CT (203) 734-9748

VFW Post 12084, Seymour, CT – Al Yagovane (203)736-7981

For Ticket information contact Tom Gabianelli at tgabs@att.net or 203-231-2682

DiSorbo’s Food Truck will be selling hot dogs, burgers, fried dough, pastry’s, etc.

Kindly bring a non-perishable food item for the Seymour / Oxford Food Bank

TURKEY DINNER AND BASKET RAFFLE  Sat., June 4th

Dinner starts at 5:30 PM and Raffle drawing at 7:00 PM.

Adults $14, Kids (under 10 yrs.) $5 – Raffle tickets – $1 for one and $10 for 12

Come for food and fellowship!

There is still time to donate a basket or items for a basket for the Basket Raffle!

 

4th Annual “Hot Dog Stand”

For Veterans and participants of the Seymour Memorial Day Parade

At this time we would like to request donations of Hot Dogs, but only “Hummel’s Skinless” and any kind of bottled water would be greatly appreciated.  Last year we served over 500 hot dogs!  Items can be left in the kitchen, marked accordingly.  This is a wonderful way to not only show our support but to also show others some of the things that are important to us like family, neighbors, our community, faith and fellowship.

The Field of Flags

is a welcomed site for many and has now become a tradition each Memorial Day. Last year I noticed quite a few people, stopping at all times of day, walking in the field taking pause and paying their respects to not only loved ones past and present but to our country.  Out of respect to the flag, many of them need to be replaced this year as the outdoor elements have taken their toll on them. I’d like to ask if anyone would care to make a monetary donation so that more flags could be purchased.  No amount is too small, anything would be greatly appreciated.  If a donation is made in honor of someone please let me know so this can be appropriately acknowledged. The flags that we’ve had on display these past 2 years have been generously donated by Sally Schwaller in honor of her husband and her father.

Thank you and God Bless!

For more information, see Lynne Foreman

BOOK CLUB:  Our book club’s next book is Me Before You by JoJo Moyes.  It has received great success in past years and is a favorite of book clubs.  It has a moral theme that I predict will promote much discussion when we meet on May 13th.  If you are interested in joining us, please speak to Kim Majkner.

PRAYER SHAWL MINISTRY – Are you interested in being a member of the Prayer Shawl Ministry?  Please contact Lynda Boynton. Shawls are given to bring comfort to those who have suffered a loss, an illness or some misfortune.  For more information go to www.shawlministry.com.  To request a shawl, leave a message at the church office 203-888-6729.

PRAYER CHAIN:  The Prayer Chain is open to everyone.  There is an amazing strength from the power of prayer.  To have your email address added to our prayer chain so you will receive notifications of those in need of prayer, let Teresa Kregling know at kreg5@comcast.net.  If you have a prayer request you would like to go out to the people on the Prayer Chain, email or call Teresa and she will send it out.

OFFICE HOURS THIS WEEK

Reverend – Tues., Wed.  & Thurs. – 9:30 AM-4:00 PM

Pastor Allyson is looking forward to meeting with members of the congregation and sets aside mornings for that purpose.  Please call first to meet with her in the afternoon as she will use this time for visitation and community outreach.

Administrative Asst. – Tues., Wed. & Thurs. – 9:30 AM-1:30 PM

Please send your announcements to the church office by WEDNESDAY morning if you wish them to be included in next Sunday’s bulletin.


 

 

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Week of March 20, 2016

Worship 10:00am

Coffee Hour immediately following

Retreat

 

When you hear “Retreat!” you think of the dictionary definition: “moving away from a place or situation especially because it is dangerous or unpleasant.  This definition most certainly does not describe our wonderful Confirmation Retreat this past weekend at Silver Lake. In fact, we moved toward a safe and nurturing place, a beautiful place where we worshipped together, learned together, and played together.

Thank you to our chaperones, Nancy Rogers and Elwin Jimmo, for their enthusiasm and support during our time at Silver Lake.  In addition to visiting the Labyrinth and hiking around the camp, the retreat provided us with opportunities to meet with other teens from around CT to discuss many spiritual topics including baptism, discipleship, and the scriptural basis for the six core values of the United Church of Christ denomination.  Our confirmation class has decided that our church truly exemplifies the UCC core value; “We Are People of God’s Extravagant Welcome” and we talked about how our group can be part of that welcome. What a blessing for us to share our faith with each other as we experienced God together in such an inspiring setting.   

So sound the Retreat, head for a safe and comforting place and spend some quiet time with God and with friends this week.  I’m sure glad we did!

 Blessings, Pastor Allyson

Prayer for the Week

Thank you God,

Not just for life,

But for our journey through life.

Life is a miracle,

And a journey through life is so full of so many more miracles

If we travel with our Heartsongs,

Thank you God for blessing me with the gift of Heartsongs,

So that I can enjoy my miracles.

~Mattie J.T. Stepanek, 11 yr. old struggling with Muscular Dystrophy, April 1998

 


 

ANNOUNCEMENTS

MAUNDY THURSDAY:  We will be having a pasta dinner prior to the Maundy Thursday service, 5:30 pm, March 24th in Fellowship Hall.

 It would be helpful if we had an approximate headcount so please sign up at coffee hour.

We will be serving pasta (including a gluten free option) and three sauces: Howie Bradshaw’s famous meat sauce, turkey Bolognese, and plain marinara; salad & garlic bread.

Donations of pasta (spaghetti) and sauce (marinara) would be greatly appreciated (leave items in the kitchen). Please contact Michelle Mann if you can help out in the kitchen. We will be there at 3pm to start cooking and could use help with clean up as well.  We did this last year and had a good turn out. Hope you can make it.

 


 

 

Breakfast-with-Easter-Bunny

Pancake Breakfast with the Easter Bunny

Saturday, March 26, 2016

8 – 11 am

$7 per person – $4 children 10 and under

Free Children’s Easter Craft Table

Proceeds provide camperships to Silver Lake Conference Center and funding for Youth Group and Church School activities

DON’T MISS THE FUN – BRING YOUR FAMILY AND FRIENDS!!!

Volunteer and Donation Sign-up sheets are in Fellowship Hall for the Bunny Breakfast. We need help with set up and bacon cooking on Friday 3/25 and help from beginning to end on Saturday 3/26. Any amount of time you can share with us is appreciated. Don’t miss the fun and satisfaction of knowing you are helping fund programs for our youth and church school children!

Tickets for the breakfast will be available soon!

Please bring in your raffle basket or items to be added to a basket as soon as possible so that we will have a good number of baskets at the Bunny Breakfast, and can sell tickets for the drawing in June at the Turkey Dinner.

Basket Ideas:  Gardening, Wine/Beer, Baking, Kitchen, etc.

Thank you,

The Christian Education Committee

 


 

 

tag sale

T A G   S A L E

SAT., MAY 14TH

8:00 A.M. – 2:00 P.M.

Our annual tag sale is fast approaching – mark your calendars NOW!

This year, we will have around 7 tables inside for members ($10 per table) and non-members ($20 per table). We will also offer a limited amount of 10’ x 10’ spaces outside for $15 (must provide own table). Interested members need to advise Laura Thompson if interested by March 31st before we advertise for outsiders.

Items can be dropped off in the gym the week after Easter. Items should be clean and in good condition (NO clothing, unless hats, purses or scarves). Any unsold items will be donated to Helping Hands. If you need your items picked up, please call the church office or Laura.

We will also have coffee and baked goods for sale, and any donations will be gratefully accepted (no lunch will be offered).


Church-bus

Need a ride to church??

The Seymour Senior Center is now offering transportation to church services for Seymour Residents who are no longer able to drive themselves.  We will be offering transportation to the following Sunday Services:

Seymour Congregational, Broad St., 10:00 a.m.

Trinity Episcopal, Church St., 10:00 a.m

St. Augustine Catholic, Washington Ave., 10:30 a.m.

Other churches may be included  if requested and times do not conflict with the schedule.  Reservations required.  Call 203-888-0406 before 4:00 p.m.  Calls made after 4:00 p.m. will not be accepted. Transportation will be provided by the Senior Mini-Bus.

It is free – first come, first serve.

 


 

OFFICE HOURS THIS WEEK

Reverend – Tues., Wed.  & Thurs. – 9:30 AM-4:00 PM

Pastor Allyson is looking forward to meeting with members of the congregation and sets aside mornings for that purpose.  Please call first to meet with her in the afternoon as she will use this time for visitation and community outreach.

Administrative Asst. – Tues., Wed. & Thurs. – 9:30 AM-1:30 PM


 

THIS WEEK

Monday, March 21 4:00 PM Weight Watchers

Tuesday, March 22 6:15 PM GS #135

6:30 PM Adult Choir Rehearsal

Thursday, March 24 5:30 PM Pasta Supper

7:00 PM Maundy Thursday Service ~ Special music by the Adult Choir.

 

 

Tag Sale

tag sale

 

Indoor Tag Sale!

Saturday, May 2, 2015

8:00 am – 2:00 pm

.

INDOOR tag sale in the church hall, from 8 a.m. – 2 p.m. Hundreds of items for all ages donated by our church family. We will also offer coffee and delicious, home-made baked goods for sale and a $2.25 lunch special (hot dog, chips and beverage) in honor of our 225th anniversary. Raffle tickets or dinner tickets for our turkey dinner in June are also available.

E-Bridge – Week of February 15, 201

E Bridge – Week of 2/8/2015

Welcome to this week’s E-Bridge

What you will find here :
-Reflections on this week’s text
-What is happening at Seymour Congregational Church
-What is going on around the Conference. Please spend time to review the video on church interdependence found at the end of the E-Bridge.

We have two text this Sunday the First is from Isaiah 40:21-31

This time of year is rough on lots of people. In Connecticut winter has finally arrived. The snow while beautiful when fresh loses its luster soon. The full moon last night lit up my yard, Peg went into the old familiar words of the Christmas Eve Poem “gave a luster of midday to objects below”; After two days of moving the stuff, the luster, I will admit was wearing off. Short days and long nights have a negative effect on many. The grayness and short days often have a wearing effect. Some suffer from seasonal affective disorder, which leads to depression. So that leads me to our first text.
Have you not known? Have you not heard?
The Lord is the everlasting God,
the Creator of the ends of the earth.
He does not faint or grow weary;
his understanding is unsearchable.
He gives power to the faint,
and strengthens the powerless.
Even youths will faint and be weary,
and the young will fall exhausted;
but those who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength,
they shall mount up with wings like eagles,
they shall run and not be weary,
they shall walk and not faint. [from Isaiah 40]
The prophet was of course speaking to a people in exile, who’d spent a lot of years away from home. They were tired. Tired of the distance, the longing, the not knowing, no luster, powerless.
The prophet’s words come to us also. We get tired. Exhausted, even. Lonely. Faint, the poet says. And what is the word we’re to hear?
Years back when studying biblical languages, I learned that triplets (three-line sequences) in Hebrew poetry, like the one at the end of this chapter, grew in emphasis from the first to the third. In other words, the last line is more important to the author than the middle, and the middle is more important than the first. In this case, that seems counterintuitive to me.
If he were thinking/writing/preaching the way I would, the poet would have said, “They shall walk and not faint, they shall run and not be weary, they shall mount up with wings like eagles.” But his order is just the opposite of what I’d expect.
Surely, I would say, flying like an eagle should be the pinnacle moment of this poem, not walking without falling down. That however is for me what it is all about. Walking and not falling down. How many times have I stood with someone who has broken a wing and is now learning to walk all over again. Walker in hands one step forward.
Here’s what I have grown to love in this poem: Sometimes, no matter how much we long to soar like an eagle, all we can do is barely manage to put one foot in front of the other, over and over and over again. Maybe that is all we can hope for. That the very best thing is simply to be able to walk, in faith and with strength, because God accompanies us.
And from Mark 9:2-9
This is one of those stories that woman hear different than men. There is Jesus doing his thing. Simon-Peter has brought his new found friends over for dinner. Only a guy would do this without calling ahead. And only a guy would have stopped to think if my mother-in law is sick maybe we should dine out and bring her something. I feel for this un-named woman. Who as the woman who read the text note, sick or not Jesus gets her up, a miracle well maybe and off she goes into the kitchen to cook and serve. The real miracle would have been if the men at least delivered some pizza.
See You Sunday


ANNOUNCEMENTS

On February 7th at 9:00 AM, there will be a kitchen cleanup.
Please come and help out. Contact Teresa Kregling with any questions.

THIS Sunday, February 8 is our 2nd Annual Valentine’s Auction.

Get on the good side of your sweetheart! There will be a “healthy” Coffee Hour immediately after church service this Sunday followed by the Live Auction. So grab your coffee or tea, a little nosh, and a bidding paddle (and don’t forget your checkbook!) We have so many wonderful gifts for all ages that have been donated to bid on, including amazing sweet and tasty treats! Come on down to Fellowship Hall after service and join us in the fun!

For donations of baked goods or other food items – Please bring them in before the start of the service on Sunday and be sure to label what the item is and if it contains nuts or is gluten-free. Thank you.

In the event church is cancelled due to the weather, we will have the Auction on Sunday, Feb. 15th.

Looking forward to seeing you all there!

Peace and Blessings,

Your Parish Life Committee

 

** Next Sunday, Feb. 15th, the Choir will be starting to rehearse a new Cantata “Sanctuary” to be presented on Palm Sunday in Celebration of the Life of Regina Poniatowski, given by her family and friends. We’re inviting people that like to sing to come join us, be a “Sometime Singer” and sing in the Cantata and for Easter. Grab your coffee and come up to the Choir Room at 11:30 next week! No experience necessary. See You?

**Is any member of your family having a birthday or anniversary? Why not surprise them and put flowers on the altar for their celebration? Or remember a loved one. Flowers mean so much. Our Flower Chart in the hall is completely empty for February and March. Calling YOU to please sign up!!

**Please send your announcements to the church office by WEDNESDAY morning if you wish them to be included in next Thursday’s E-Bridge and Sunday’s bulletin.

**Tag Sale date will be Saturday, May 2nd, 8 am – 2 pm. Members who would like to unload some items can rent a table for $20. A sign up sheet will be posted in March for those wanting to rent a table and for volunteers to help set up/tear down, work at the sale, etc. Please hold off bringing in items until the week following Easter (April 6). Any questions, contact Laura Thompson. Thank you!

**BOOK CLUB: Our book club meets the first Friday of each month. We each take turns picking a book of our own choice and then the discussion takes place in our home. Books of every genre are chosen which makes for lively discussion. For more information contact Karen Baker, 888-0394.


THIS WEEK AT SEYMOUR CONGREGATIONAL CHURCH

Sunday, February 8th 
10:00 AM – Worship
11:15 AM – Valentine’s Auction
No Choir Rehearsal Today

Monday, Feb.9:
3:30 PM Weight Watchers
7:30 PM Amaranth

Tuesday, Feb. 10
6:15 PM Girl Scouts #135

Thursday, Feb. 12:
7:00 PM AA

Saturday, Feb. 14:
HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY!!



OFFICE HOURS THIS WEEK

Reverend – Tues., Wed. & Thurs. – 9:30 AM-4:00 PM
Administrative Asst. – Tues., Wed., & Thurs. – 9:30 AM-1:30 PM

Rev. Ed is here Tues., Wed., and Thurs. from 9:30 AM until 4 PM. He would like to meet members of the congregation, and puts morning hours aside for that. Please call first if you plan to come in the afternoon as Rev. Ed goes out to visit at that time.


Conference News

News and Announcements
One of the new ideas taking place around the conference has been to assist congregations to find mutual ways to work together. Interdependent ministries recognizes that the difficulties the local congregation has when trying to stand alone. It call out to the benefits that occur when congregations find mutual ways to work together. You may wish to view the video by Rev. Siladi as he discusses this new approach.

VIDEO: New Vantage Point Begins Series on Interdependent Ministries  HARTFORD — In a new edition of Vantage Point released today via the Connecticut Conference’s YouTube channel, Conference Minister the Rev. Kent Siladi began a series of conversations with local church leaders engaged in interdependent ministries. In the first installment, four pastors joined Rev. Siladi in the Leadership Studio at United Church Center to briefly describe some of the ways they have shared in God’s work with members and ministers of another congregation. 02/04/2015

Conference Calls Michelle Hughes as Associate Conference Minister for Transitions – HARTFORD — In a message to church leaders around the state today, Conference Minister the Rev. Kent Siladi announced that the Rev. Michelle Hughes of Chicago, Illinois, has been called as the first Associate Conference Minister for Transitions, to support and collaborate with local congregations during leadership transitions. “We believe that many of our churches will reap rich harvests from the assistance and training she will be able to bring to them,” he said. 01/23/2015
And Yes ministries do die!

Sunset: the Christian Conference of Connecticut Concludes its Ministry – HARTFORD — With a single candle flickering at the front of the chapel in the Asylum Hill Congregational Church UCC in Hartford, friends, supporters, and admirers of the Christian Conference of Connecticut honored the ecumenical agency’s ministry in worship on Thursday evening, January 15th, as it concluded. Board Secretary the Rev. Bruce Steinway reflected, “To follow Jesus is to make one’s way to the cross — but the cross is not the last word.” 01/21/2015


UPCOMING SERMON NOTES:

The subject of our Sermon on February 15th will  be about global warming.  Please take a moment and watch this supporting video:

Global Warming – Preaching for the Planet

 

Sunday Service – March 16, 2014

10:00 AM – Worship Service

11:00AM –  Coffee Hour, Hosted by the Diaconate Committee.Please join us!

11:00 AM-Tag Sale “Meet and Sort

11:00 AM – Bell Choir – Join Us!  If you can’t sing, come ring!

11:30 AM – Cantata Rehearsal – Looking for more “sometime singers” – come give us a try!

The altar flowers are given today in memory of Herbert Blaze by Eleanor Blaze.

 

GREETERS:   Janet Kopec & Dawn Ryan

LAYLEADER: Howard Bradshaw

DEACONS OF THE MONTH: Stan & Connie Wiesniak

 

Scripture notes:

Now there was a Pharisee named Nicodemus, a leader of the Jews. He came to Jesus by night… John 3:1-2

What does it mean to be born again? I remember once this little boy came up to me, I figured him to be about 5 years old. He announce that he was born again, I smiled and said to myself that he was still wet from his first birthing experience. The body in its wonder blocks out the trauma of our birthing experience, if not why would anyone want to relive that a second time.   In the language of this age, the expression has come to suggest some sort of metaphysical transformation, a shift that promises eternal reward. Believe in Jesus and you are born again, the logic goes, and then you get to go to heaven. For many being born again is the culmination of the Christian task, but for Jesus and his followers this second birth marked a beginning of a dangerous and fraught journey. It is about leaving behind the safety nets woven and stored up in life and starting fresh, aligned with something new, something politically subversive, socially fraught, and existentially threatening. To those who claim this experience I always ask what they plan to do with this gift. OK were all saved but that does not release me of my responsibility to bring light to a darkened world. Just the opposite because of my baptism I gain a new responsibility to bring the light of Christ to the darkened regions of the kingdom.

Jesus is asking Nicodemus to be born in a new way, to be born from above, to bear God’s logic amongst a world that functions astray from the will of the divine. Jesus is asking Nicodemus to be on the ground floor of something new. To turn away from what has been done before, to turn away from the rules and logic that have ordered his life up to this point, to emerge anew into the world.

Although Nicodemus seems confused by his conversation with Jesus, he had to have expected something like it. Nicodemus came to Jesus at night. His behavior suggests that he knew he was defecting, at least in some small way, by going to speak with this radical Rabbi, and Jesus does not disappoint. He calls Nicodemus to walk away from the power and privilege of his leadership position and join a lost cause for justice and liberation, to cast in his lot with outcasts.

Jesus is pushing his followers to understand that new life emerges constantly from the old, that God sends new life from above and that new perspectives that interrupt our new habits. This is what Jesus names as salvation. God sent Jesus so the world might be saved through him. Through his message of love and the vision he bears. Through the human transformation he facilitates and for the radical departures he encouraged. To be followers of Jesus demands a similar radical departure from norms and a similar willingness to boldly make all things new.

OFFICE HOURS THIS WEEK

Reverend – Tues., Wed.  & Thurs. – 9:30 AM-3:00 PM

Administrative Asst. – Tues., Wed.  & Thurs. – 9:30 AM-1:30 PM

 

Birthdays This Week

March 16 – Sandy Tucker, March 19 – Michelle Mann & Becky Mc Cart,

March 20 – Sandy Barber, March 21 – Kim Majkner, March 22 – Tyler LaBranche

Happy Birthday!!

 

 

REACH OUT AND HELP OUR LOCAL FOOD BANK!

The Seymour/Oxford Food Bank needs volunteers to help pack and distribute food for those in need in our community.

It is right here in Seymour, two minutes from our own church!

The Food Bank is located in Trinity Episcopal Church 91 Church Street (Across from the Library) Seymour, CT 06483 203-888-7826

Days and Times that they need help are:

Mondays and Wednesdays (pack) 9:00-11:00

Tuesdays and Thursdays (distribute) 11:30-1:15

Either call the number above for details about volunteering or go directly to the church where the Food Bank is located.  Just to be clear, Trinity Episcopal Church does not run the Food Bank, it is run by volunteers (who are appreciative and friendly), and the number above is a direct line to the Food Bank, not the church.

The Food Bank is very low on the following items:

Jello, pudding, spam, jam, jelly, canned fruit, instant potatoes, canned white potatoes.

Update on Covenant to Care for Children – In December, we were able to provide Christmas gifts for 9 families which included 13 boys ranging in age from 8 months to 19 years old and 9 girls ranging in age from 6 to 18 years old.  Gifts provided included gift cards, toys, clothing, diapers, shoes and jewelry.  Now we need to collect items needed monthly.  Right now they need diapers, kid’s coats, and toiletries, including toilet paper.

 

Lenten Bible Study

          We will meet each Thursday at 12 noon for a review and reflection on the weekly scripture.  Brown Bag (we will supply sweets.)  Sign up following worship.

Sundays of Lent:

Special Second Hour offering “How my faith influences my work world” 

          During Coffee Hour, we will hear from four different professionals their personal stories of how their faith helps them to direct their work.

March 16th  Vivian Michaels, RN –  Survivors of Suicide

March 23rd  Andrea Rochniak O.F.D. – Ralph Hull Funeral Home

March 30th   Meral Prewitt – Covenant to Care

ANNOUNCEMENTS

 

“How Does Faith Affect Our Work Week?”

Vivian Michaels, R.N., of Survivors of Suicide is visiting with us today speaking of her faith journey as a nurse.   She will speak to us during “The Second Hour”.

No Sunday School this week-Family Sunday.

Join us for Pierogi Making!  We meet Fridays, from 9:00-11:00 AM and then come back at 5:00 PM.   Contact Teresa at 203-881-2027 or kreg5@comcast.net with questions.

Tag Sale Committee “meet and sort” TODAY, March 16th after worship in the gym.  Small items can be dropped off now in the “Youth Room” next to the kitchen; please hold your larger items until the week before the sale. A sign-up sheet has been posted to work the day of the fair on the bulletin board to the left of the kitchen.

 Some of us are planning to go see the movie Son of God, this Sunday, March 16 for the 3:45 viewing.  It is playing at the movie theater in Seymour (Derby Ave.) – The old Ames Plaza.  If you would like to come, please feel free.  I would suggest getting there by 3:30 to get tickets and seats.  Also, if you would like to join in, we are heading to Alberto’s afterwards for dinner. If you plan on attending the restaurant, please let me know so I can contact Alberto’s to have a section saved for us.

Sincerely,

Ann Tripp

Need Everyone’s Help!

It is anticipated that the Seymour Fire Marshall will conduct an audit of the Church within the next 10 days.  Please – All committees & groups – check your storage areas to have them as neat and uncluttered as possible.  When in doubt throw it out.  This includes the back corner of the gym, storage closets, office areas, staircases, classrooms, exits, etc. Thanks -from the Property & Renovation Committee. Thanks, Tom

The Annual Turkey Dinner and Basket Raffle will be held on June 7th.  Save the date and consider donating a basket for the raffle worth approximately $25.00.  Help will be needed for set up, clean up, cooking and serving.  Come join us!  It’s a fun time for all.

Update on Covenant to Care for Children – In December, we were able to provide Christmas gifts for 9 families which included 13 boys ranging in age from 8 months to 19 years old and 9 girls ranging in age from 6 to 18 years old.  Gifts provided included gift cards, toys, clothing, diapers, shoes and jewelry.  Now we need to collect items needed monthly.  Right now they need diapers, kid’s coats, and toiletries, including toilet paper.

New short web address is now active!  www.seymourcongregational.com

New webmaster email address is:  webmaster@seymourcongregational.com

A short class for all committee chair people interested in navigating the site for posting will be offered in April. Date to be announced. This will not be a class in operating a computer…knowledge of internet access, uploading/saving/word processing is a must! Contact me at the webmaster address if you are interested!!  If you are not interested in posting for your committee, I understand and will be available to upload your information and postings for you.  DeAnna 

COFFEE HOURS:  The Parish Life Committee oversees the non-committed coffee hours and we are in need of packaged goodies to keep in our pantry.  There are also open dates (March 23rd is next) if you and your family/friends would like to volunteer and delight us all with your very own hospitality.  There’s a sign-up sheet in Fellowship Hall or feel free to donate your goodies by leaving them in the kitchen marked “Parish Life”.  Any help would be most appreciated since we love our Coffee Hours!

BOOK CLUB:  Last Friday’s book club was beyond fun.  Katelynne Stevens accessorized in the fashion of Night Circus – our book for that month.  We all dressed up in the manner of the characters and had much to laugh and comment about.  It was our first book of fantasy.  I felt it was an adult Harry Potter book.  To reflect on the past nine books we have read, with the exception of my choice, I would not have chosen any of the books we have read.  The purpose of joining a book club is to expand our literary horizons and have fun.  We are doing both!! If you are interested in reading our next book, it is I Am Malala by Malala Yousafzai.  So we head back to the Middle East.            Karen Baker 

Pot Luck B-I-N-G-O Dinner on Saturday, April 5th.   5:00 – 8:00 p.m,  sponsored by the Parish Life Committee. Admission is Free!  There will be a sign-up sheet for dinner/desserts and there will be paper BINGO sheets, so please bring a friend and bring your dabber!!  Come for fabulous food and fellowship!  No cash, but lots of prizes.

Easter Lilly Plant Orders are due by April 4th. See Jackie Calzone for order forms.