Greetings from Pastor Ray
Already, the Second Week in Lent is upon us. I hope that my joy in traveling this path with all of you beats in your hearts, as well. The road ahead reminds us of the very best of who we are, along with the suffering that institutions of Jesus’ time, as well as our own, can impose on others. Together, we remember, pray and consider the call to serve others because of the love we know of God, so often learned in the company of one another.
And, this Love of God and God of Love continues to be the theme this Sunday, as we worship together and explore the message of Psalm 121 and John 3:1-8. The short message that I find in both these passages is to resist thinking we know “who” God is by what surrounds us and our five senses. God, from what many of us think, is much more of an inside relationship, beyond just the senses we know.
Tom Wolf! Speaking of our relationships with one another, I am happy to share that during a recent visit withTom, he asked me to share his very best with all, following his successful quadruple bypass surgery at Good Samaritan Hospital on Monday. Tom, Kay, David and Debbie send their love and appreciation for your prayers and healing thoughts.
Hope House Ministries Fundraiser Report: We also want to thank everyone who was involved in Saturday evening’s Hope House Ministries Fundraiser in our sanctuary. More than 150 guests filled our pews for ninety minutes of the promise of recovery expressed through the fabulous performance of the H.Y.M.N.S. singing group. Because of the generosity of those in attendance, more than $2,100 was raised to support the ministries of Hope House! It was a wonderful night, and if you would like to learn more about the organization and its work, please visit http://www.hhm.org. Special thanks to Mike, Judy, Heather and Meghan for all that went into making this a memorable evening.
Talkbacks: Friends, I want you to know how much I appreciate the time we have for talkbacks after worship. As I learn more about Sayville Congregational United Church of Christ each week, the time we spend in conversation is very helpful to me. More than this, it is a warm time for a smaller gathering to extend our community in ways that the Spirit moves us. If you haven’t joined us yet, we meet every Sunday after worship for about thirty minutes. This Sunday, March 12th, we will have a talkback time after our All Church Luncheon, hosted by Lorraine Severin and Roberta Smith. Please be sure to join us! And thanks to Lorraine and Roberta for what will be a fabulous lunch!
Lent, Passion Week and Easter: Please check our Sunday bulletin or our website in the next few days for the schedule ahead of us as we approach Easter Sunday. We have redesigned our bulletin as a take home resource of the prayers and readings from worship, as well as the schedules and announcements for upcoming events. Let us know if you have any suggestions on making the bulletin better for you!
Accompaniment of an immigrant family facing deportation: On Thursday last, I joined a group of folks at Federal Immigration Court in New York City, to accompany a mother and son on their first appearance before a judge, as their citizenship status is reviewed. I will speak about this more on Sunday and you will be able to find ways of becoming involved shortly on our website. In the meantime, please keep all these folks in your prayers; folks who live wondering if the next knock at the door will be for deportation.
eChimes: Please be sure to send in any announcements you would like to have included in our eChimes Newsletter, published each Tuesday. Send your announcements to our editor, Heather Corcoran at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Social Action Committee: The steering group for this committee will be providing updates on our work and resources in the days ahead. This information will be distributed online and in print, and I ask that you send any links of information you come across to me at email@example.com. Any vetting you can do before sending information is much appreciated.
Lastly, please feel free to contact me at any time at 914-645-2995 (Text & Voice) or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. My office hours vary, but I am generally in on Mondays and Tuesdays. By the way, Bible Talk is held on both those days: Mondays at 11:45 AM and Tuesdays at 7:00 PM. Please join us if you are able. We have very lively discussions!
Blessing to all; I look forward to seeing or hearing from you soon,