Midweek Update: 6th Sunday After Pentecost

Dear friends in Christ,

I hope you’re all managing to stay cool during this heat wave. I have a few things to highlight this week:

Worship this Sunday

As cases continue to fall in the state, we’re working to phase back in aspects of worship from before COVID. This week, we’re resuming having liturgists, so you can all hear someone talk who isn’t me! (But on a theological level, this is one way we show that worship is something done by all of us rather than just the minister.) We’re also resuming deacons serving communion to the congregation in the pews. Though, we will still be using the prepackaged communion kits we’ve been using since the spring. Additionally, we’re resuming  having outdoor coffee hour this week (weather permitting.)

Summer Worship Plans

Just as a reminder, worship this summer will remain at 10am , and both July and August will be here at MCC.

Tech Volunteers

John D and Chris D have been running our livestream and updating our tech throughout the pandemic so we could continue to improve our online worship. Now that we’re back inside, they’re looking for people who would like to join the team so we can always have coverage every Sunday and also be able to stream out other services like funerals/memorial services and weddings. You don’t need to be a computer expert; you just need to be able to follow directions. If you (or your kids) are interested in learning how to run the livestream, contact John D.

Share the Care Helpers Wanted

One of the ministries of our church is providing meals to members and friends going through a difficult time or a transition (e.g. new baby, etc.) If you would be interested in being on the volunteer list of people who cook or bake, please contact the Church Office. We can always use more hands to help share the care in our community.

Renovation Updates

I’ve attached a couple pictures of the almost done kitchen. We’re still waiting on some tile work, electrical work, and some decorative touches before things are 100% done. But we’re almost there!

Now that Bob and Bill’s work on the kitchen is done, they’ve moved on to painting the parsonage garage. They’ve gotten a lot done, and I’ve attached a picture of the progress there.

General Comments

With 4th of July fast approaching, I thought I’d share one of my favorite prayers for our nation that I’ve found. It’s from the old Congregational Church book of worship that was published in the 1940s. It doesn’t quite square with present day views of American history, and it’s got some flaws. But, what I appreciate about the prayer is I feel it captures the hope of America well. It’s been a rough number of months for our country, and sometimes it’s nice to be reminded of the hope and dream that brought so many people here in the first place.:

“God of our fathers, who didst lead thine ancient people through desert wanderings into the promised land, and who didst guide our Pilgrim sires across the stormy seas to lay here the foundations of this great republic; we implore thy blessing upon those who have lately come from other lands to make their home in this country. Amid strange faces and unaccustomed scenes may they feel that thou art with them. In their loneliness and homesickness may they realize that the everlasting Friend is beside them, upon whom they may cast all the burden of care and anxiety. Help those about them to give them sympathy and good cheer in the spirit of Christ. May they prosper in this land of freedom and justice and opportunity, and become loyal and devoted citizens of this country of their adoption. May they be faithful followers of Christ, that they may be also fellow-citizens with the saints in that liberty where-with Christ maketh his people free. Amen.”

Peace,

Pastor Katrina

Midweek Update: 5th Sunday After Pentecost

Dear friends in Christ,

I hope you’re all doing well. I have a few things I’d like to highlight this week:

Worship 6/27

This week, we’re going to resume singing a closing hymn this Sunday as a step towards normal. As a reminder, the Sunday School year has finished, but we do have childcare available every week for children preschool aged and younger.

John Somero Memorial Service

Thank you to all the volunteers who helped set up and take down chair and usher for the memorial service this past Saturday. That was a lot of work, and thanks to everyone who helped we were able to have everything go smoothly.  For those who were unable to attend the service, a video of it is now on our youtube channel: https://youtu.be/HkqIBG0XaWY

Looking for Tech Volunteers

John D and Chris D have been running our livestream and updating our tech throughout the pandemic so we could continue to improve our online worship. Now that we’re back inside, they’re looking for people who would like to join the team so we can always have coverage every Sunday and also be able to stream out other services like funerals/memorial services and weddings. If you (or your kids) are interested in learning how to run the livestream, contact John D.

Kitchen Renovation Update

The kitchen is almost finished! Everything has been painted, and we’re just waiting for some electrical work to be finished and for the tile for the backsplash to be installed! Thank you to Bob W. and Bill M. for the excellent and loving work they put in. And thank you to all our volunteers who have been cleaning up the Social Hall and putting things back into the kitchen.

General Comments

This past Sunday evening, there was a lovely sunset on the green. I’ve attached a few pictures. Being at the top of the hill here usually gives me a good view to see lots of gorgeous sunsets. Plus, the green is beautiful in general. It always makes me think of the hymn: “For the beauty of the earth, for the beauty of the skies…”

Have a good week!

Peace,

Pastor Katrina

Sunday, June 20, 2021

Hello everyone,

I hope you are all doing well on this beautiful day.  Things here are kind of strange these days as we finally are opening up and slowing down at the same time.  We are now open for inside worship but things are settling down for the hot days of summer where attendance is low due to people going on vacation, working in their gardens or just enjoying the outdoors.  Summer is a quiet time for us here at MCC.  On that note don’t forget that my summer office hours are 9:00 to 12:00 starting on Monday and going through mid-June. 

It was so good to be able to participate in the “mini” Strawberry Festival last Sunday.  It wasn’t as fun, since I didn’t get to see everyone, but oh I do love the strawberry shortcake.  There were just enough strawberries left over that I got to have strawberries for breakfast right through Wednesday.  Alas, they are all gone now.  I can prepare more but they never taste the same.  I guess it’s all those interesting stories that are told while people hull the strawberries.  It gives them quite a spicy flavor!  I have faith that next year will be back to normal and involve more of you and the Middlebury community.

This Saturday at 11:00 is John Somero’s Memorial Service.  It will be on the town green which I think that John would have liked.  He did like to spend time outside playing basketball and golf.  I hope the day will be as beautiful as today.  He deserves it.  I’ll really miss John.  He was a very special person.  I never heard a negative work from him.  He was always smiling and he had a calming effect on everyone he spoke to.  The pew where he sat on Sundays will always look a bit bare, like something is missing.  But there will always be a place for him there.  Bring your comfy chair and join us to celebrate his life and say goodbye.

Attached is the bulletin for Sunday.  Have a wonderful weekend.

Take care and stay safe,

Jeanine

Midweek Update: 4th Sunday After Pentecost

Dear friends in Christ, I hope you’re all doing well and getting opportunity to enjoy this beautiful day. I have a few things to highlight for this week:

Indoor Worship Updates

Council met last night, and we’ve decided to end preregistration for indoor worship. We’re still going to have people sign in when you arrive for worship. So, you can just come and sign in when you get here. Additionally, next Sunday, 6/27, we’re going to reintroduce everyone singing a closing hymn. This week we’re lucky to have our bell quartet playing!

Other COVID Updates

Outdoor worship, outdoor church activities, etc. now are mask optional. We’re also no longer having sign ins/registration for outdoor worship.

Memorial Service for John Somero Sat. 6/19@11am on the Green

The memorial service for John is this Saturday. Please bring a chair. I’m going to try to record the service, and if it comes out alright, I will post it on our YouTube channel in the days after for those of you who are unable to make it. If you are available Saturday morning, we could use volunteers to help set up chairs on the green for guests who won’t know to bring one. People will start setting things up around 9am. We will also need help cleaning things up after the service.

Summer Worship Plans

St. George’s has decided with things being so unsettled with the pandemic that it would be best to hold off on having joint summer worship this year. So, both July and August we’re going to be having worship at MCC at 10am.

General Comments

Thank you to everyone who helped out with our Strawberry Shortcake on the Go! And thank you to everyone who bought shortcake! We sold out of shortcake! I also want to thank Dinova’s for generously donating the strawberries this year. I’ve attached a few photos from the Strawberry Shortcake on the Go! I hope you all have a good week!

Peace,

Pastor Katrina

Day Camp this summer at Silver Lake!

Silver Lake is adding Day Camp options for this summer! This is a more affordable option for younger kids to get to experience Silver Lake this year!

From Silver Lake’s Facebook post:

Silver Lake Conference Center

 We are doing something new! Join us for one or two weeks of day camp! Aug. 9-13 or Aug. 16-20. Open to children entering grades 1-6. Register online at www.silverlakect.org. All the magic of Silver Lake, now for younger campers!

Sunday, June 13, 2021

Hello everyone,

It is the summer as I remember it and I love it.  I’ll take weather like this all year.  Please get out this weekend and enjoy it.

Also, please join us for Strawberry Shortcake on the Go!  We will be selling our town famous Strawberry shortcake on Sunday from 5:00pm until 7:30pm or as long as it lasts.  So far we have requests for 8 shortcakes.  If you would like to preorder you may email me UNTIL 6:00pm tomorrow.  I will come in then to run the pre-signup sheets.  I missed it so much last year.  I just can’t seem to replicate it at home.  Just like when you eat out it always tastes better when someone else makes it.  If there is anyone who would like to help us hull strawberries on Sunday we will be hulling on the stage following the service on Sunday.  Join us!

The bulletin and Crier are attached if you are joining us on the live stream.

So, the sun is shining, the humidity is low, shortcake is coming and life is good.  See you on Sunday.

Take care and stay safe!

Jeanine

Midweek Update: Third Sunday after Pentecost

Dear friends in Christ,

I hope you’re all doing well and staying cool with all this hot weather. I have a few things to highlight for this week:

Indoor Worship 6/13 @10am

We are back indoors for worship every week with masks and social distancing. We’re asking people attending in person to sign up ahead of time or at the door. You can sign up online or by contacting the church office. This week is our last week of Sunday School, but nursery care will continue through the whole summer. We will of course continue to live-stream.

Strawberry Shortcake on the Go! 6/13 from 5-7:30pm

This Sunday from 5-7:30, we’re going to have strawberry shortcake! Each serving is $7, and you’re welcome to take it home or bring a chair and enjoy it on the green. I’ve attached a poster, and the link to the Facebook event to help get the word out is here.

I’m looking forward to seeing many of you and enjoying some strawberries! Thank you to Janine SW and Ellen A for heading things up!

IShare the Care Helpers Wanted

One of the ministries of our church is providing meals to members and friends going through a difficult time or a transition (e.g. new baby, etc.) If you would be interested in being on the volunteer list of people who cook or bake, please contact the Church Office. We can always use more hands to help share the care in our community.

General Comments

It was lovely to see many of you this past Sunday for worship or for the picnic. I forgot to take pictures at the picnic, but Valerie got some pictures of outdoor Sunday school and Ben E. receiving the Charles P. Luckey Scholarship. Congrats to Ben! I’ve attached those along with a picture of a lovely sunset from last week.

I know it’s still technically spring, but the weather these past days and looking out at the green has me thinking of the hymn “The Summer Days Are Come Again.” Part of the first verse goes like this:

The summer days are come again;
Once more the glad earth yields
Her golden wealth of ripening grain,
And breath of clover fields,
And deepening shade of summer woods
And glow of summer air.

Happy almost summer!

Katrina

The Rev. Katrina R. Manzi

Minister, Middlebury Congregational Church