Pastor’s reflections in Eastertide

 Last weekend I attended the Annual Meeting of the Vermont Conference of the United Church of Christ. The theme was “What in God’s Name is Happening in Vermont?” We were encouraged to share what’s going on in our churches that help answer that question. Folks in the conference have known for a while all that’s going on in our faith community, and I was happy to again praise God and to credit all of you for following the call of the Risen Christ to serve and support the people of our town and county! Our church has become a model for other churches as they seek God’s leading to serve and support folks in their towns and counties. You have said a bold “yes” to God’s call. Our mission has sustained over many years because it is lay led, with the pastor’s support.

That certainly does not preclude us from wondering how the Risen Christ is continuing to call us into our future. Our workshop leader for the Annual Meeting, The Rev. Dr. Rob Voyle, led is in a beautiful practice of Appreciative Inquiry. This practice invites us to ponder:

What do I focus my heart upon?

What are my stories of faith that have brought me here thus far?

What are the values I uphold?

What does our congregation set its heart upon?

What are our faith stories?

What are the values we hold?

And the biggest question:

How do I or we see the risen Christ in our everyday experiences?

(How does the risen Christ come to us as we live every day as people of God?)

As we sat together at the Annual Meeting in groups at round tables and shared our personal experiences and those of our local faith communities, we were truly blessed and lifted up.  We listened to one another, learned from one another, and drew inspiration from one another.

I pray that we as a faith community can ponder these questions as we proceed into our future. I pray that we can share with and listen to one another around tables of blessed and uplifting conversation.

May our hearts be filled with the eternal love of the risen Christ that meets us in our mortal beings. May that love pour out onto one another, so that we love one another as Christ loves us; forgive one another as Christ forgives us; serve one another as Christ serves us.

I am so very grateful for your faithfulness,



Worship Schedule in Eastertide

May 5

“Fed and Feeding”

John 21:1-17


May 12

Mother’s Day

“Mothering ones on earth and in heaven”

Luke 11:1-10


May 19

Scouting Sunday

“Above all, service”

Matthew 25:31-40


May 26

Memorial Sunday

“No greater love”

John 15:9-17


Events, gatherings, meetings


Bible Study                                 10 am every Wednesday in the Fireplace Room


Spiritual Life and Worship       6:30pm Thursday May 2 in the Dining Room


Trustees                                   6pm Thursday May 9 in the Conference Room


PPR                                          6pm Tuesday May 14 in the Conference Room


Executive Council                  6pm May 16 in the Conference Room


Community Dinner               5:30pm Friday May 31 in the Dining Room


                                                                Sunday School News 

Sunday School is robust, thanks to our teachers

Carol Olsen, Deidre Tascarella, and Cynthia Yerrick

If you get a chance, thank these dedicated disciples!

Did you know:

·         An offering is taken every week at Sunday school.  Funds this year go to the Heifer project.

·         Deidre makes sure each of the children has money to put into the offering plate.

·         Two of the children " straighten up" the sanctuary after Church.

·         Each week our lesson is based on the same readings you are hearing in worship.

·         The Children have Sunday school bulletins.

·         The children are sponsoring “Noisy Can Offerings” in May for Heifer International.



Children’s Sunday is June 2. The children lead us in worship!

Youth Groups

Youth Groups are winding down for the programmatic year after very meaningful and fun times together!

Our Senior High Youth Group is saying goodbye to Alexis Follensbee as she graduates and begins her college career. New members from Middle School Youth Group who are promoted to 9th grade will join us in September.

Our Middle School Youth Group will also be seeing new members as youth enter 6th grade.

Many thanks to Sara Russell and Kristine Hendon who have gently led our Middle School youth in their faith formation.

Many thanks to Carol Calenberg and Rev. Marisa who have gently led our Senior High Youth group in their faith formation.

Shout outs

We have so many folks who deserve a “shout out” that we always run the risk of leaving someone off the list, especially as they do their faithful work quietly and behind the scenes.

Below are names that were called to the Pastor’s attention by the lay leaders, and that the Pastor has noticed in “going the extra mile.”  Please let our Pastor know if there are folks who are not on this list.

Ø  David Sanborn for donating the new paper towel dispenser in the bathroom

Ø  Wade Chafee for major spring clean up

Ø  Cynthia and Charlie Yerrick for tidying and planting our outdoor space

Ø  Carol Farnham for her faithfulness in folding the bulletins every Thursday

Ø  Doreen Mason, Ida Manning, Rob Mason, Lori Jones (and others who slip in unnoticed) for contributing cheese, crackers, and cookies for our fellowship hour

Ø  Bill Slocum, faithful friend of our congregation, who is always willing to lend his technical expertise for the maintenance of our computers

Ø  Our Spiritual Life and Worship committee that faithfully assists our Pastor in tending to the care of our congregation and providing vital worship

Ø  Our Executive Council that is charged with making essential and prayer-filled decisions for the health of our mission

Ø  Our Trustees who care for our buildings and do so quietly and with great diligence

Ø  Our Mission Committee that is so blessedly focused in identifying and providing care for groups outside our four walls, aiding the children in the Heifer Project, and overseeing the Community Dinners


Missions Committee News

The mission committee wishes to thank all those who contributed to our noisy offering for Heifer International in April.  The in gathering gives the children a good start toward filling their wish list of animals to send to those in other countries.  We will collect boxes that individuals took home to save pennies during lent and had that to our present amount. Please bring those to the church as soon as possible.

May’s community dinner will be a selection of salads and casseroles.   Please see the sign-up sheet for donation of food and thank you in advance for your support. We will take the month of June off as we prepare for the Fourth of July festivities. 

News from “Breakfast on Us”

May 17th is the 4th anniversary of our breakfast program! (and they said it couldn’t be done!!)  Since that first day we have served, get ready, 23,751 breakfasts!  It really doesn’t seem possible that it has been four years and our wonderful volunteers are still smiling!  People are still donating money and food and even some of our volunteers started out by coming to the breakfasts as guests and felt that they wanted to give back.  Unless they have been here, I don’t think people realize how important this program is for so many people, for so many reasons.  If you are curious about the program, please come for breakfast some morning.  We serve good food! 

Thank you to everyone who donates on a regular basis and for Easter Missions this is how we are able to keep going.


News from “Open hands, Open hearts” (Benevolence) 

Many people have called or stopped in for help and we do help when there are enough funds.  Between 3/7 and 4/25/19 we have given out $275.00 in food cards, $250.00 in gas cards and $220.00 towards, electricity, rent, etc. 

Thank you to everyone who donates to this program.


News from Lamoille County Youth Center 

Along with a cool Spring comes the young peoples’ desire for hot food. We offer them grilled cheese sandwiches, pancakes, pizzas, tortilla chips with melted cheese, mac & cheese, and Hot Pockets, along with other selections. The young people travel back and forth from LCYC to E=Mc2 Community Center.  They will come to LCYC to get fed and we provide.


With all this activity, we need more bar-type seats for a high table. A couple of our current seats keep releasing their bolts from so much use. We thank our volunteers who have been fixing our seating to make it last, but some seats are losing the battle. We are thankful for the Easter donations from our generous congregation. May the warmth be with us!

News from the Vitality Group

Our Vitality Group that formed in late February includes members of the congregation who are brainstorming ways our church family can actively engage with our greater community to grow attendance and ultimately ensure that our mission and meeting places are well maintained financially and physically.  We want to be part of our community, and have the community be part of us. 

Since our group attended the vitality conference in February, we have made plans for getting out into the community and increasing our presence this summer.  We have attended and will continue with video chats with other churches in Vermont, building upon our shared experiences. 

In order for vitality to take hold, members and friends of our church need to join us. Please consider these outreach opportunities as ways you can participate with us:

A group of us will be together on Green Up day May 4th at the Oxbow in downtown Morrisville. We will connect with other community members as we clean up an important place for summer social activities. 

This summer we hope to be a vital part of the Wednesday night music activities at the Oxbow, by providing a changing table and possible nursing area available to guests.  If anyone wants to help with set up & cleanup for this weekly project, please contact Suzanne, Judy B, or Hope. We welcome any level of participation.  We will also offer these services during our July 4th celebration and during Rocktober events (and maybe the LACN cancer walk).  

We welcome any and all ideas members and friends of our church may have to meet neighbors and get to know folks. Possibilities can include block parties or community gardens. We have heard from some members of our congregation that they are already quietly working to bring their neighbors, friends, and even professional interactions to attend church.  It only takes a little time to grow a friendship and offer a sincere invitation to church.  We are already recognized for our mission to help children, youth, and families, and it takes just a few genuine interactions to open the way for increased attendance now and in the future.



Jessica Campbell






Kenneth Campbell






Merilee Batchelder






Mildred Farnham






Karen Oakes






Dot Bliss






Elizabeth Courchaine






Michael Dekens






Herman VI Fiess






Gary Anderson






Kenneth Salls






Sophia Hazard-Hayes