September 2017 Newsletter


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September 2017 Newsletter

Notes From West Mountain                                                The Reverend Mark E. Diters

Our first few days at Sebago Lake summer time ruled, but by the last day, the air was crisp and we watched more than one leaf fall from tree to wave. Sure enough, fall’s falling…seasons move on, transitions from one time to the next…the song Closing Time… “Every new beginning is an old beginning’s end…”

Each year about this time I used to sing my children a song by Loudon Wainwright Jr. called “Summer’s Almost Over”. To this day, they still shout me down with vehemence and vitriol whenever I try to sing it! It begins with a rather melancholy piano intro and leads into the verse: “Summer’s almost over, soon its back to school, time to drain the water out of the swimming pool. Adapt a brand-new attitude, a positive outlook, buy yourself some pencils and a loose-leaf notebook.” The song goes on about getting ready for fall sports and leaving your summer love behind.

I suspect their reason is that it hits home so powerfully. It speaks to transitions and change. It speaks to essence of lost time and the emotional elements of expectations unmet or opportunities slipping by. And there is something about summer being in the rear-view mirror that calls us to such perceptions.  It always takes me a few tries to leave such stuff behind and “energy up” for the program year with the work that calls to be done.  Soon enough, somewhere between the refreshing September breezes and the lure of the “country fairs” with fried dough, shaky quaky amusement rides and oxen pulls, my focus returns. And what loss if any is felt transforms into sweet memories and the expectations of new memories ahead.

Hoping everyone’s past summer and the transition to this new season are the best they could have been and will be!

Peace on the journey!

Mark

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BOARD OF CHRISTIAN EDUCATION -WELCOME BACK SUNDAES ON SUNDAY

Start off the Sunday School year right with Sundaes on Sunday! Sunday School starts up on September 10th, and to celebrate, we will be enjoying make-your-own sundaes during coffee hour. Save your appetites and see you then!

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FLAGG ROAD UCC KNITTING GROUP

The Flagg Road Knitting Group will meet on September 12th and 26th from 1:30 to 3:00 pm at Cottage M in Hartmeadow Village.

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SEPTEMBER 17th  SHRIMP BOIL FOLLOWING THE 10:00 AM WORSHIP SERVICE

Sprinkle a little Old Bay and then friends, you’re on your way, steaming plates of shrimp and corn brightens up any Sunday morn… we didn’t have to do the fishin’ but Back Bay is our favorite mission so sign up for this year’s boil, and eat them up so they won’t spoil. Come, invite friends and neighbors to the Shrimp Boil! Suggested donation will be $5.00 for children $10.00 for adults. Please sign up for the meal in the lounge or contact the church office at 860-523-0121 to make reservations.

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OCTOBER 1st – FULL CHURCH COMMUNION

Eating together, breaking bread, sharing a meal…is truly a way to grow in fellowship and friendship. Additionally, sharing communion is a way to grow in faith as well! Sunday, October 1st is World Communion Sunday. Recognizing that through this service we seek to unite worldwide, the least we can do is all share in Communion one with another. We will celebrate the Lord’s Supper together, young and old with a light morning meal in the sanctuary. The sermon will be a shared reflection/discussion by one and all! Children will take part in all portions of the service.

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OCTOBER 8th  – BLESSING OF THE ANIMALS

Saint Francis of Assisi is credited with the often-quoted phrase, “Pray ceaselessly, when necessary use words.”  He is also responsible for opening the eyes of all people recognizing that those other than human inhabitants of this planet are blessed by God as much as we are.  Sunday, October 8th will be our annual Blessing of the Animals Worship Service in the sanctuary. On this day each fall, our sanctuary has been gifted with many furry and finned brothers and sisters from the animal kingdom. We are an open church! Any and all animals are welcome. Where ever they are on life’s journey they are welcome here. (As long as they fit in the sanctuary we will bless them with words, prayer and music.) Invite friends to bring them along. Help us to celebrate the variety of life and God’s gifts to us all, living here in West Hartford!

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BOARD OF CHRISTIAN SERVICE

The Board of Christian Service will be sending out Christmas cards to our Veterans this year. Please consider donating any unwanted Christmas cards to the cause.  There is a collection box in the link for your card donations. A signing/note writing date will be announced soon.

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HURRICANE HARVEY: A LETTER FROM OUR CONFERENCE MINISTER 

Dear Friends,

The news from the devastation in Texas continues to unfold in tragic ways. As members of the United Church of Christ we have always been committed to providing immediate support to the hardest hit parts of the world through natural and human caused disasters. Our commitment goes far beyond the important work of basic necessities and help needed by those struggling in the aftermath of these events. We are committed to long-term relief efforts, long after the news has passed and the attention of the world has shifted.

The impulse to offer help is a critical one. There are a wide variety of ways to help and the United Church of Christ “Emergency USA Fund” insures that 100% of the funds received will be used in direct emergency relief efforts. It is an effective use of your church and individual resources to help in this way.

Churches can also collect items to assemble Church World Service cleanup buckets. Kits can be dropped off at the Center Congregational Church in Meriden, CT. UCC Disaster Ministries has matching grants to assist in assembling kits.

Our national disaster ministries will be providing information regularly:

http://www.ucc.org/disaster/

Our prayers are with those who have experienced loss and devastation in this most recent event and we invite your gifts and actions in the days, months and years to come.

Kent Siladi

Connecticut Conference Minister

 

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