Midweek Update: 10th Sunday after Pentecost

Dear friends in Christ,
I hope you’re all doing well. I have some things I’d like t highlight for the coming week:
Pastor’s Vacation
I’m going to be on vacation from 8/2-8/23, returning to the office on 8/24. While I’m away, we will have guest preachers on those three Sundays. Pastoral coverage in case of emergencies (e.g. death, dying, serious illness or injury, etc.) has also been arranged. The Church Office, Deacons, and Church Council have the contact information for the clergy on call. If you need that info, it’s best to contact Michele Finn (Audrey’s mom) the chair of the Diaconate, Ellen Aronheim the chair of Church Council, or to contact the Church Office. 
For prayer requests those three Sundays, Jeanine in the church office will send out an email asking for the prayers, and she will make sure they’re given to the guest minister for worship.
Eagle Project at the Church
James P, a member of our church and a scout has been working on his Eagle Scout project this past weekend. I’ve attached pictures of the completed work: there’s a brand new bench looking out on the green in front of the parsonage, and the North St. side of the parsonage yard that was all torn up to install the gas lines a few years ago has been put back together, landscaped, and a screen has also been installed in front of the gas meters. So, thank you to James and to all the scouts at our church for all their work on this project and support of the church in general. Great work everyone! 
Renovation Updates The tile backsplash in the kitchen has been finished! I’ve attached a picture. At this point, we’re just finishing up electrical work with replacing the outlet covers, getting the ventilation fan motor operational, and then sorting out some decorations. Bob and Bill are continuing to chip (or sand) away at repairing the front of the meetinghouse. I’ve attached a picture of them both hard at work this morning.
Livestream Tech Volunteers 
I want to give a shout out to Drew and Thomas who ran the livestream by themselves this past Sunday while John and Chris were out of town. It would be good to add a few more volunteers to the team so we can always have coverage. If you’re interested in volunteering or learning how things work, contact John D, and you can always talk to Drew and Thomas to get more info about the learning curve.
General Comments
This coming Sunday, the Old Testament lesson we’ll be looking at is David’s lament upon learning of the death of his son Absalom: “The king was deeply moved, and went up to the chamber over the gate, and wept; and as he went, he said, “O my son Absalom, my son, my son Absalom! Would I had died instead of you, O Absalom, my son, my son!” Lamenting like this isn’t a particularly big piece of our culture or our worship in general, but our scriptures have lots of laments in them, particularly the psalms. Prayers and songs of lament are important for sometimes acknowledging grief, hurt, pain, and loss.
This past week I was playing a new video game called “Everyone’s Gone to the Rapture.” The game is set in a rural English village in the 1980s that has experienced some sort of calamity where all the people from the village are missing, and the basic plot is you’re trying to piece together what happened. One of the striking things about the game was it’s got a beautiful choral soundtrack, and many of the lyrics are based on psalms. A few of the tracks were based on Psalm 13, which is a psalm of lament. I wanted to share the song because I think it does a really good job of matching a text like Palm 13 with music that expresses the longing, loss, and even hope that goes into offering a lament to God: https://youtu.be/de_UYA4P1Ik

(The rest of the soundtrack is also really lovely and on YouTube if you wanted to hear more.) 
I hope you all have a good week. If I don’t see you in church this coming Sunday, I’ll see you later on in August.
Peace,
Pastor Katrina 

Midweek Update: 9th Sunday After Pentecost

Dear friends in Christ,

I hope you’re all doing well this week. I’m certainly appreciating that the humidity is lower today than in the past few days. I have a few things to highlight for this week:

John S. is Turning 100!

Please join us this Friday as we celebrate the upcoming 100th birthday of our dear friend and long-time MCC member John! Let’s all take time to shower John with love and friendship by sending him special cards of greeting and well wishes. Feel free to share your warm memories of times spent with John over the years in church, with boy scouts, during cactus club events, and much more. John’s contact information is available in the church directory. Questions: contact Michele F.

Renovation Updates

The tile in the kitchen is almost finished being installed. I’ve attached a picture of the latest progress. Additionally, Bob and Bill have started work on the front of the meetinghouse! I’ve attached a picture of the guys at work. Restoring and repainting the front of the church involves a lot of labor to be done right, so we’re extremely blessed to have two members who are willing to put the time, and really love, in to do things right so the meetinghouse will look great for years to come.

Confirmation Class

All youth in high school are eligible for confirmation class. If your high school aged child is interested, please let me know. I’m figuring out numbers and whether things work out better to run a class this program year or next.

General Comments

This past weekend I was able to go on retreat with some of the other young adults in the Southern New England Conference at Killam’s Point in Branford. I’ve attached a picture. It was peaceful and really lovely to have a change of scenery and to spend some time by the Sound.

One of my favorites verses from the Psalms is from Psalm 46: “Be still and know that I am God.” It’s a good reminder that sometimes we need time to sit still and just be.

Peace,

Pastor Katrina

Sunday, July 18, 2021

Hello everyone,

Sanctuary

I hope that this bright balmy day finds you all well.  It may be hot and steamy but, Yay the sun is out.  I don’t know about you but that definitely lifts my spirits.

I’m really excited and pleased that the kitchen backsplash is almost completed and looks fabulous.  It really brightens up the room.  Thank you Ellen and Shari for your choice in tile.  We are looking so classy!  We will look and feel even better when the restoration and painting of the front of the church building is finished.  Since I look at it just about every day of the week I hadn’t realized how sad it was beginning to look until a couple of weeks ago.  I was quite shocked.  It goes to show you what happens when time elapses and you become complacent and just don’t notice things anymore.  The church will soon have a new face.  And, what a happy and energetic face it will be.  Wouldn’t it be nice if we could just slap a coat of paint on ourselves.  At this point in my life I need way more than that.  Oh well, such is life.

This is shaping up to be a great service this Sunday.  We have Anna Kwashnak singing for us.  We also have a guest preacher who I can’t wait to meet.  From what Katrina has said about him he sounds like a really nice person.  We could all use more of those in our lives.

Don’t forget the GWIM food pantry and School supplies for Wellmore (I believe Staples has begun their sales).  Also, save your books to donate.  You will find it all in your Crier which is attached.  For those of you who will be joining us online the bulletin is there too.

Have a good weekend.  Partly sunny and Sunday especially is supposed to be cooler.  They are predicting possible thunderstorms both days but I love thunderstorms.  God’s work in action!

Take care and stay safe! Jeanine

Midweek Update: 8th Sunday After Pentecost

Dear friends in Christ,

I hope you’re all doing well and hopefully getting a chance to enjoy some sunshine today after so many gray days. I have a few updates to share for this week:

Worship This Sunday

This Sunday there is a baptism, and we’re going to have a guest preacher, Robbie Laughton. Robbie is one of my best friends from seminary. He has some time off between finishing up as the Associate for Youth and Families at Trinity Episcopal Church in Southport and starting a new call at a church in Virginia, so I asked him to preach for us this Sunday. He read the Old Testament lesson at my ordination, so some of you might have met him then. I’ve attached a picture of us from my ordination.

I’ll still be in worship on Sunday, but Robbie preaching is enabling me to go on retreat this Friday and Saturday with some other young adults from the Southern New England Conference.

Renovation Updates

Bob and Bill continue work on the parsonage garage, and once that’s finished, they will shift to repainting the front of the meetinghouse. Additionally, the tile is starting to go up in the kitchen! I’ve attached some pictures of the work in progress.

General Comments

One of the values we talk about in church is the concept of stewardship, faithfully caring for the gifts and resources God has entrusted us with. Often we talk about stewardship in terms of faithfully administering our financial resources, but one of the other ways we’re stewards here at MCC is through the care and investment we’ve put into and continue to put into our physical infrastructure. When I interviewed with the search committee here, one of the very first things I noticed was how much care had been put into maintaining and upgrading important aspects of the church building and the parsonage. The other feature of good stewardship of our physical infrastructure is sharing it with our community, and with conditions improving with the pandemic, AA, Scouts, etc. are able to use our building again (and have been for months now.)

Throughout the pandemic, we’ve had the opportunity to catch up on fixing, repainting, and restoring things that would have taken us years to do in more normal times. Thanks to Bob and Bill and also everyone contributing to the church, we’ve taken care of or will take care of all the major aspects of the building in need of repair, which sets us up well for the future. It also enables us to continue to serve our community.

I hope you all have a good week!

Peace,

Pastor Katrina

Midweek Update: 7th Sunday after Pentecost

UPDATE FROM THE PASTOR; 7th SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST
Dear friends in Christ,
I hope you’re all doing well, especially with the wind we got from that thunderstorm yesterday afternoon. There are a few things going on in the life of the church I’d like to highlight:

Worship Update

With the continuing decline in cases in our area, Church Council has voted to end required social distancing during worship and lift the cap on the number of attendees. We’re also making the sign in optional; if we already have your contact information, you don’t need to sign in. In the event of a positive COVID case, we’ll send an email to everyone on our email list. So, this coming Sunday you can sit wherever you’d like, but please continue to be mindful of people who would like to maintain distance. Masks are still required.

John S. is Turning 100!

Please join us this month as we celebrate the upcoming 100th birthday of our dear friend and long-time MCC member John! Let’s all take time to shower John with love and friendship by sending him special cards of greeting and well wishes. Feel free to share your warm memories of times spent with John over the years in church, with boy scouts, during cactus club events, and much more. John’s contact information is available in the church directory. Questions: contact Michele F.


Renovation Update

Painting work is continuing at the barn. I’ve attached a shot of Bill hard at work today sanding things down to get the wall ready to be painted. Bob and Bill have even been doing some repair work where there’s been dry rot over the centuries this barn has been here. We’re really blessed that Bob and Bill have been able to use their skills this past year to make so much of our church buildings look their best.


General Comments

Last night we had a beautiful sunset after the storm cleared. I’ve attached a few pictures of it. It reminds me if the first verse of Psalm 19: “The heavens are telling the glory of God; and the firmament proclaims his handiwork.”
I hope you all have a lovely week.
Peace,
Pastor Katrina

Join us for worship, Sunday, July 4th!

Join us in person or online every week at 10 a.m. Services are in our sanctuary at 1242 Whittemore Road, Middlebury, CT; please use the main entrances on the street side.

This week’s sermon: “” by the Rev. Katrina Manzi

Scripture readings:

Musical offering:

Here’s this week’s Bulletin and Congregational Crier:

Refreshments will be served on the lawn or in the social hall after the service. We’re looking forward to seeing you!