Jesus In The Wilderness

Dear Friends in Christ,

Please first, remember to set your clocks ahead one hour so you can join us for worship on time! Happy Spring! Secondly, we are pleased to have friends in an ecumenical choir from Craftsbury and neighboring towns sharing their gift of music with us this week. Thank you to Carole Young and Diane Sanville for organizing this! 

Lastly, this week's focus in worship will be on Jesus in the Wilderness. Many of us enjoy finding signs of God in the beauty and peacefulness of nature. Jesus modeled for us taking quiet time with God to be renewed and better prepared for the purposeful path God sets before us. We will explore how we might also set aside time for God in our busy lives and find peace and strength from doing so. 

Join us for a special time of worship. All are welcome!

Peace and joy,
Pastor Kim

Transfiguration Sunday

Dear Friends in Christ,
This is Transfiguration Sunday. We are reminded of the amazing moment 3 of the disciples witnessed on the mountain with Jesus as he was changed in front of their eyes. He spoke with Moses and Elijah and God spoke from the cloud. It was a life changing experience. God's glory was on full display. Some moments are like that. We may be completely overcome with God's glory in a special life changing event. Other times, God is present in more subtle ways, but still in meaningful reassurance of his constant love for us. Lent begins this week and it is a perfect time to be on the look out for God sightings however, subtle or stunning they may be. We are blessed to have many wonderful offerings of ways to celebrate Lent and Easter. I've included a calendar of events for you to choose from. Be sure to pick up this year's Lenten Guide as well, it's sure to be a trusted companion for the days leading up to the celebration of Christ's  Resurrection. Our back door is open from 7-7 every day. You will find Lenten Guides on the back table in the sanctuary and on the pew next to the back door downstairs. May you find Lent to be a time of meaningful contemplation. 

Peace and Love,
Pastor Kim

Special Services Offered for Lent and Easter

  • Ash Wednesday, March 6th  — 3 PM  at CCCC

  • Ecumenical Ash Wednesday, March 6th — 7 PM  at UCC

  • Lenten Book study at ECPC, Book Study:The Character of Virtue: Letters to a Godson by Stanley Hauerwas.  Sunday evenings 6-8 PM, March 10-April 14, at the manse
    (1097 Ketchum Hill Road), potluck supper at 6, discussion 6:45ish.

  • Lenten Book study at UCC,  Looking for Lovely, By Annie Downs, Monday nights 7-8 PM
    March 11- April 15th.

  • Maundy Thursday, April 18th — 7 PM  at ECPC

  • Good Friday, April 19th — 3 PM at CCCC

  • Easter Sunrise Service April 21st — 6:30 AM at the top of Echo Hill (East Craftsbury Road to South Albany Road to Echo Hill Rd. Turn right and go to the top of the hill.)

  • Easter Breakfast following this service — 7:30 AM at  ECPC

  • Easter Service  — 10 AM at UCC

  • Easter Service  — 11 AM at  ECPC


UCC= United Church of Craftsbury
CCCC= Craftsbury Community Care Center
ECPC = East Craftsbury Presbyterian Church
 

No Matter Who You Are Or Where You Are In Your Life's Journey, You Are Welcome To Join Us

feb23.jpg

Dear Friends,
We are daily observers of changing times. With these changes comes an opportunity to consider how our church and the community are interwoven. A group of us went to a VT conference event and we've come back with some inspiration, enthusiasm and a desire to build meaningful relationships with the members of the community. If you feel like something is missing in your life, or you'd like to explore your faith, or you just crave meaningful interactions with others, come join us Sunday for fellowship, worship, music, and prayer. There are no rules, there are no expectations, there is no dress code, or obligation, just free grace and love for everyone. No matter who you are or where you are in your life's journey, you are welcome to join us. This week there will be a fellowship time following the service. Join us for food, fellowship and fun. See you at 10:00am or when you can make it!

Peace and Joy, 
Pastor Kim

What Does God Call Us To Do And How Can We Find The Strength To Respond In Faith?

Dear Friends in Christ,
Have you ever found yourself in a situation where you felt you should stand up for someone being mistreated or speak out when you see an injustice occurring, but lost courage and confidence and regretted it later? I bet it's happened to all of us. Part of being a faithful Christian is overcoming fears enough to serve God with our words and actions that help show love and compassion for others. There are many in the bible who model that for us. If God calls us to it, God will see us through it. We will be contemplating this in our service this week. What does God call us to do and how can we find the strength to respond in faith? Come join us for singing, prayer, scripture, and meditation as we nurture our bond with Christ together as a faith family. All are welcome!

Next Saturday we are taking a team from our church to a Vitality Event sponsored by the Vermont Conference in Springfield VT. We will be riding together in a van graciously loaned to us by the Craftsbury Outdoor Center. At this event we will learn strategies for growing our church congregation, reaching younger populations, and becoming more active in the community. We will be forming an action plan for the near future to enhance our mission and ministry in the community. You are welcome to join us if you have an interest in being part of planning for the future of our church. Call Pastor Kim 535-4757 or email @mamaof3.larose@gmail.com if you are interested. The team leaves at 6:30 Saturday morning and returns at 6:30 that evening. 

Donations of canned and boxed goods or paper products are welcome to be brought to our sanctuary any time and we will transport them to the food pantry in Hardwick. Thank you for sharing generously toward a good cause!

Blessings, 
Pastor Kim

Celebration Of God's Love And Grace

Dear Friends in Christ,

We are our best selves when we support one another and combined our gifts and talents. God provided each of us with a special purpose that when integrated with other faithful believers weaves a tapestry of faithful service, love and strength that shines the light of Christ, demonstrates the love of God and brings God's vision for the kingdom of God to reality. We can be grateful for the gift of this faith family that cares for one another and encourages one another in our journey of experiences and learning. If you find yourself feeling isolated by the cold, dark winter come and join us for the celebration of God's love and grace and to feel welcomed and encouraged by our family of God.

This is a special week for our church. Oleta Marckres will be sharing her talents on the fiddle for special music. Our children will be handing out blessing bookmarks. All those interested in joining the church are invited to take part in the Reception of New Members part of the service. Also, our Annual Meeting will follow the service. We encourage everyone to attend to help us plan for an exciting new year of ministry and mission.

A yummy potluck will provide food and fellowship to warm our bellies and hearts. Please join us for a special day.

Peace and light,
Pastor Kim

Baptism of Jesus

Dear Friends in Christ,

1-13.jpg

This week in our worship service we recall the baptism of Jesus. This may bring back memories of your own baptism or perhaps you were too young to remember it beyond pictures or stories. Maybe you haven't been baptized yet. No matter what your experience or where you are in your spiritual journey water can be a powerful symbol of purity, cleansing, and a life giving resource. We use water in our daily life to clean, to wash away, to restore, renew, and revive. Water is a symbol of life. Jesus said he was the water of life. The kind that would never leave us thirsty again. In the scripture story of Jesus' baptism we see a strong connection between Jesus and God in that moment and a reminder of God's love for his beloved child. We are each a beloved child of God. Join us for worship this week and be reminded of how loved and special you are.

Love, peace and joy,
Pastor Kim

Epiphany Sunday

Dear Friends in Christ,
 

1-6.jpeg

This Sunday is Epiphany Sunday the Sunday we celebrate the journey and arrival of the Magi as they sought Jesus, the newborn king. They came to honor Him and give their gifts. Their faith and commitment to searching and finding Him is inspirational. What else can we learn from them? We will explore this and our own possible epiphanies for the new year during worship this week. All are welcome, come join us for joyful singing, meaningful prayer and friendly fellowship in the love of God. Happy New Year!

Peace,
Pastor Kim

Palm Sunday

Come! Now is the time to worship! Join us for our Palm Sunday celebration. Our choir will lead us in praising God with songs and we will lift up our spirits in meaningful prayer. This week's meditation focus is looking at the lessons we can learn from Jesus during the events of Holy Week and remembering the great gift of love Jesus gave as he endured the challenges of that last week of his life. We look with anticipation toward the resurrection and God's victory over death. Come bask in the love of God. All are welcome!

Certainty of Death

2018-3-18.jpg

Someone said yesterday, "There are two certainties in life; death and taxes." How do you feel about the certainty of death? Do you have questions about what happens after you die? Does it cause you worry or stress thinking about it? Today in our worship service we are going to explore what the bible says about eternal life. We are going to embrace the uncertainty of our mortality and find hope and reassurance in God's promises for us given out of deep unending love. We also have special music provided by Pati and Phil Kirk and young violinists, Hannah and Sam Kieth. Fellowship follows with delicious hot cross buns! Be sure to brave the cold and come join us for warmth and worship. All are welcome!

God's Healing Love

2018-3-11.jpg

There are times we forget the realities of what God's love really means in our lives. It’s not just a word, it is an action, a promise, a security we can depend on. Because God loves us, we will never be alone. Because God loves us we don’t need to depend on the possessions or people of this world to fill us. It is God's love that makes us complete. It is God's love that makes every hardship bearable. It is God's love that heals us and sustains us when we feel weak and powerless.

Don't forget to turn your clocks ahead and join us at 10:00 for a celebration of the truth of God's enduring love and grace. All are welcome!

Forgiveness

2018-3-4.jpg

Here is an excerpt from this week's meditation. "When you forgive another you are also making a conscious choice to decentralize the impact of that hurt in your life. You move the pain away from the core of who you are. It no longer defines you. You will not give the hurt the power to govern your life like it did before. Forgiveness takes time. Be patient with the process and ask for God’s help all along the way. This process takes effort, energy and determination. But it will have a powerful impact on your inner peace and happiness. Forgiveness is a gift you give yourself, your world and the person who needs to be forgiven, even if at first they don’t seem to appreciate it. If you need inspiration to take on this challenge, look to Christ the greatest model of forgiveness the world has ever known. It is in God’s forgiveness of us that we discover true freedom and true healing." Join us for Sunday worship at 10:00 where we will contemplate the power of forgiveness to bring joy and peace. We also have the musical talents of Ned Houston and Don Houghton to uplift our spirits. All are welcome! Come on in!

Embracing the Uncertain

2018-2-25.jpg

"Faith is not the absence of doubt, but the embrace of it and ultimately the transformation of it. Likewise, courage is not the elimination of fear, but the regular interaction with it and conscious choice against it.” Maguey deVega, Embracing the Uncertain. Come join us for worship this morning at 10:00 and explore where you are on your faith journey. How might you grow your faith and your relationship with God while accepting your human questioning and wonder? All are welcome.

Find Strength and Endurance in Christ

It is possible that the chaos of today’s society with its violence and anger leaves us feeling powerless and defeated. Maybe we feel our level of anxiety rising as we find ourselves consumed with the epidemics of addiction, mental health crisis, violence, effects of natural disasters. There are so many forces around us that attempt to take away our hope, peace and faith. But we can always find strength and endurance in Christ our Savior. God is ready to love us and guide us when we accept our limitations and give ourselves to His tender care. God isn't finished yet. Be a part of the solution by being in fellowship with others and loving and accepting without fail. Join us for worship today at 10:00. We'd love to see you.

40 Days of Lent

So why do we, as Christians observe Lent? Lent is meant to be a season of reflection and preparation before the celebrations of Easter. By observing the 40 days of Lent, Christians replicate Jesus Christ's sacrifice and withdrawal into the desert for 40 days.

I don’t know about you, but I find comfort in knowing that Jesus, himself, God’s son, God in the flesh, needed to go off and meditate and center himself on God’s plan, on God’s will. He found quiet refuge in isolation from others and strengthened his resolve to follow through with his ministry, his sacrifice of time, energy, effort; his sacrifice of life for our sins and the gift of eternal life. So Lent is a time when we can consider the blessed gift of life Jesus gave all humanity. It is a time when we can consider making a sacrifice as well, to nurturing our relationship with God and preparing our hearts for the truth of the crucifiction and resurrection of our Lord and Savior.

Join us for Sunday service at 10:00 to reflect on the possibilities of how you might observe Lent and nurture your relationship with God.

Also join us Wednesday night, February 14th for our ecumenical Ash Wednesday Service at 7:00 pm to start your Lenten season off right. You can celebrate Valentine's Day with your loved ones for dinner and join us for the Love of God as a special blessing afterward. Hope to see you!

When you look in the mirror do you like what you see?

When you look in the mirror do you like what you see? Are you proud of what you did or said this week? Do you remember that you are loved and accepted just as you are by a God who will always stand by you? If you are struggling to keep your New Year's resolutions or be the person you set out to be, come join us Sunday morning at 10:00. We are sure to lift your spirits and encourage your heart with song, prayer and a message to contemplate. We welcome you to come feel the love! All are welcome!

Immerse Ourselves in God's spirit

2018-1-21.jpg

Welcome to this special Sacred place where we can immerse ourselves in God’s spirit of love and peace. Here we can find rest for our weary souls and the refreshing water of life that renews and strengthens us. All are welcome here, no matter the scars or bruises you think you carry, no matter the mistakes you feel you have made, it is here that you find the grace and mercy of God to wipe your slate clean and give you a fresh start. Listen to God’s words for you today. Share in prayer your gratitude and your burdens, know that God has invited you here and is thrilled that you responded by coming and giving your time to God to continue exploring your relationship with Him.

Worship begins at 10:00. Childcare and Sunday School are available during worship. Please join us we look forward to seeing you!

Baptism of Jesus

2018-1-7.png

Sunday, January 7th at the United Church of Craftsbury the focus of worship will be the baptism of Jesus by John the Baptist. We will consider the meaning of baptism and renew our baptismal vows as we get to re-experience the water of life through our belief in Jesus and the love of our compassionate God. Join us for joyous hymns, meaningful prayer and inspirational meditation. All are welcome! We hope to see you!

The Longest Night Worship Service

2017-12-20.png

The Longest Night Worship Service
Wednesday, December 20, 7pm
Church on the Common

Christmas carols are everywhere this time of year, proclaiming a season of joy and happiness. But what if you feel only sadness? The holidays can bring painful memories of loved ones who’ve died, of jobs lost, or friendships long gone. Darkness in our hearts can match the growing darkness of the winter nights. And Christmas can be romanticized to the point of forgetting that Jesus Christ was born into a very troubled world.

On the winter solstice, the Blue Christmas Worship Service can help us name the darker side of the holidays, and remember that amid the darkness is the Light of Jesus Christ. We gather in candlelight to sing hymns, read scripture and pray together. In the Christmas season, there is a place even for sadness and sorrow.

Please join us to claim the hope of the light shining in the darkness.

This worship service is a special collaboration between the East Craftsbury Presbyterian Church,
the Greensboro United Church of Christ and the Church on the Common.

Find Hope in Jesus our Savior

Friends of the United Church of Craftsbury, we invite you to join us Sunday, December 3rd for the first Sunday of Advent with a focus on Hope and how we can find hope in Jesus our Savior. We also invite you to bring your annual pledge cards to be blessed and received in loving support of the ministry and mission of our church. We will be celebrating Holy Communion as well. Woven in to all of this will be uplifting music, meaningful prayer, and time for reflection. Please come join us. All our welcome!