CHURCH BRIEFS

The Chronicle Express

Penn Yan United Methodist 

A plea from the United Methodist Church Bishop in 2009 to feed a million people led to the Penn Yan United Methodist Church’s Community Café, which will celebrate its 12th anniversary April 28. Connie Glover has coordinated the Community Café since its inception.

For the first 10 years, the Community Café provided a free meal to anyone in the community once each month. Approximately 150 to 200 people have been served each meal. Upon the 10th anniversary, coordinator Connie Glover suggested the café be offered twice a month – and in 2019, Connie and her team of volunteers began providing meals on the second and last Tuesdays of each month. While meals were offered in the church dining room initially, COVID restrictions required the move to take-out meals.

Everyone is welcome to get a meal at the Community Cafe. Church affiliation is not required and it doesn’t matter where a person lives.

Meals will continue as take-outs for the foreseeable future. Pickups start at 4:30 p.m. until gone in the church parking lot, off Chapel Street in Penn Yan, for those driving or walking in – just tell one of the volunteers how many meals are needed.

Upcoming dates and menus are:

• April 13 - Sloppy joes with roll, fried potatoes, toss salad

• April 27 - Scallop potatoes with ham, peas and dinner roll

• May 11 - Hot dog with roll, pasta salad and chips

• May 25 - Taco salad (*meat, lettuce, tomatoes, cheese, sauce, sour cream and chives) *all will be portioned in cups to fix to your own liking

• June 8 - Spaghetti & Meatballs, toss salad and Italian bread and butter

• June 29 - Baked potato bar (*cheese, bacon, broccoli, sour cream, chives) *all will be in portion cups to fix to your own liking.

COVID restrictions have required a reduced number of volunteers helping with the café program, so Connie does the shopping and much of the prep, with assistance from a small group to package meals for pickup. Those wishing to assist are welcome to bake desserts; please call Connie (315-694-2070) and she will assign a date when items are needed and instructions on when they need to be at the church for packing. Monetary donations are also welcome, especially now when takeout containers and supplies are needed. Checks, payable to PYUMC, designated for the Community Café, can go to PYUMC, 166 Main St., Penn Yan.

Penn Yan United Methodist Church offers two worship services each Sunday at 9 and 11 a.m. – both online via the Facebook page, the church website (www.PennYanUMC.com) or by searching the church name on YouTube. The 9 a.m. Sunday Break contemporary service is also held in person in the fellowship hall, with masks/social distancing in place. The 11 a.m. Traditional worship service will reopen for in person services starting on Easter Sunday, April 4. Sunday School for the children is offered at 10 a.m. each Sunday via Zoom.


Penn Yan First Presbyterian 

The week between Palm Sunday and Easter is known as Holy Week. Many people, religious or not, are familiar with events that took place during those solemn and sorrowful days. The retelling of those days throughout history brings us a level of understanding of those times. Traditions that have evolved over centuries also helped shape our view of what occurred then and how we worship those events today.

Until vaccines become more widely available, some people are still making the choice to remain at home this Easter and forgo attendance at religious ceremonies. Traditions practiced at home can still provide a way to connect and observe the events of this week leading to the Resurrection. Here are a few to consider. The abstinence of eggs during Lent dates back to the fifth-century. Unlike other foods, they could be hard-boiled and kept. Eggs became a natural way to break the fast on Easter Sunday. Eventually, they were colored and decorated, then were presented as gifts on Easter. So color some eggs. “Eggs were a perfect Easter symbol representing the Resurrection itself and a new life in Christ.”  In creating new life, chicks not only emerge from a shell but eggshell halves also had a practical use, they were used to start seedlings in spring. Begin your own garden with a few seeds. Marigolds and petunias work well.

On Maundy Thursday, as written in John 13:34, Jesus told his disciples, “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; even as I have loved you…” One tradition on Good Friday holds that those who bake and share hot cross buns can create or strengthen a friendship. Take a moment this week to genuinely share your time with someone in a meaningful way. On Good Friday, as Christians, we should also look for ways to turn down the noise in our lives between noon and three p.m. to honor Jesus’ greatest sacrifice. Take a walk, listen to some soothing music, read something uplifting or just meditate. Spend those hours in quiet contemplation. In this past year of uncertainty and chaos we can now begin to look forward in the knowledge that Easter Sunday brings new life.

It is with great sadness that FPC shares the loss of a long standing church member, Larry Edgington. In his profession Larry was a well respected builder and loved his work. As a Trustee he was always willing to lend his skills. Larry served our church faithfully as an Elder, Deacon and member of the Session. He was a soft spoken man who took pride in a job well done. Larry is now returned to the arms of his loving wife, Barbara, and to God.


St. Mark’s Episcopal 

Maundy Thursday, the day before Good Friday in Christian churches, may have the widest variety of names and customs of any Christian observance. The names include Holy Thursday (also used for Ascension Day which is 40 days after Christ’s Resurrection), Covenant Thursday, Great and Holy or Holy and Great Thursday, Shere (clean or bright) Thursday, Thursday of Mysteries, and quite a few more.

The name Maundy, from the Latin word for commandment, is probably most common in American churches where various churches emphasize different aspects of Jesus’s Last Supper. Around the world some of the other celebrations include: the English monarch giving alms; the replacing of bells with wooded rattles to call people to church until Easter Day; and in many countries there are traditions involving visiting various churches.

St. Mark’s Maundy Thursday service usually includes Foot Washing, Eucharist, and Stripping of the Altar. This year we are deferring the Eucharist to Easter Day since we have been waiting so long to be able to celebrate it together. The service will include foot washing, striping of the Altar, and putting the reserved sacrament in repose until Easter Day. This day marks the beginning of the Easter Triduum, the 3-day period that marks Jesus’s passion, death, and resurrection. The service is at 7 p.m.

Good Friday this year will be the most like “normal” of any of our services during Holy Week and Easter. The only change will be that there is to be no singing. This service will be at noon. The Easter Celebration, at 9 a.m., will include the Holy Eucharist and lots of flowers. We would like to welcome you to any, or all, of these services but be aware that because of Covid all must be masked, distanced, identified, and have sanitized hands. Still, we would really like to see you.

Have a Blessed Easter.


Bluff Point Methodist

We are in the week to Easter and the resurrection! We also have opened our sanctuary in a limited fashion on Sundays, along with Zoom, and have kids church on Saturday afternoon.  What a year it has been, but now looking forward to new beginnings!

Pastor Sandi’s message this past week was on loosing and winning.  The hour has come for the Son of man to be glorified.  If we loose something we often gain something, and end up being a winner!

We have just come through a year of loss, in losing friends and family to Covid, in missing our friends and family, missing the hugs, dining out and being together.  We have missed celebrating people in our congregation that have gone to meet the Lord. We have missed greeting babies coming into the world, and seeing our little ones grow. Lent feels like a time of loss; it is a time of tension, as Jesus tells of his own death. Pastor Sandi asked us what we are willing to lose to live in the Resurrection of Jesus What is stopping us? We want to lose to win!

A milestone birthday for Nancy Westerdahl, who joined husband Bruce in recently turning 90! So many happy years together for this couple.

Our deepest condolences to Russ Heggie and family of Helen Stickney in her recent passing. She had been a faithful church goer with us at BPUMC for many years, so often sending cards to others with well wishes and to celebrate occasions. 

Easter Blessings to all!


Dresden Methodist

The service on March 21 was opened with a Prelude by organist, Sheryl Parkhurst. Pastor Marilyn Wood asked, "How are we today?” The congregation responded, “Blessed.” Toby Bond led us in the Call to Worship, and read the scripture: John 12:20-33.

Musical selections were: His Eye Is on the Sparrow, Forty Days and Forty Nights, Lord, Who Throughout These Forty Days, The Storm Is Strong, What Wondrous Love Is This, O Sacred Head, Now Wounded, Alas! And Did My Savior Bleed?, In the Cross of Christ I Glory, He Never Said a Mumblin' Word, Jesus Walked This Lonesome Valley, In Suff'ring Love, Who Would Ever Have Believed It? and Rock of Ages, Cleft for Me.

Pastor Wood's sermon began with her saying "Spring Has Sprung. There is new life and new hope to look forward to. We open our eyes to see what God has done for us." She read John 12:24-26 and said that Jesus is speaking about himself as the grain of wheat. She said imagine what a grain of wheat would say; "I wonder what the reason for me sitting here on this earth for months is? Why, after all that sitting, do they put me in the cold dark ground. I want to be by myself and in my comfort zone. I want to resist this change. I don't like change."  Change is part of life. The grain says, "What's happening? The Lord is directing me. I am breaking through the ground with the sunlight. This is not as bad as I thought. I am being fulfilled. I am starting over again and being fruitful." We, like the grain of wheat, lose our life. We recognize that we were living for ourselves. If we surrender to the Lord, we can be brought about to live like Christ. We can go from being barren in the ground to shimmering in a beautiful field of gold. We will be shimmering in the wind so that others can see us. We, as seeds of faith and love, get planted by God for some reason and we are watered in so many ways and the sun shines on us. We become hearts of humanity working to reconcile the world to God. We can reflect on what Jesus did for us, dying on the cross so that we can become seeds of love and faith to bring on a plentiful harvest.

Benediction:  Go from this place with hope in your heart, being a seed of Christ, bloom wherever you're planted. 

There will be a Sunrise Easter service at 51 Main Street in Dresden at 7 a.m. Sunday, April 4. There will be a breakfast at the Dresden United Methodist Church after the sunrise service. There will be a free will donation for the breakfast. We will also have our regular 9:30 a.m. service at the church. 


Milo Center Methodist

Many thanks to our church family behind the scenes. We appreciate your care to the church and the church grounds- whether it be in tree or snow removal, thank you Jim and Nate Henderson, Jamie Little, and Phil Strong.

We are so grateful for the signs of Spring. The beautiful song of the birds and popping of the bulbs.  Prayers continue for our friends and family that we carry on our hearts. We send strength to the many workers and volunteers with the Public Health Departments as vaccinations are on the rise. 

Our special collection to UMCOR raised $335. Wonderful! Lunch for The Living Well went great and was delicious too. Thank you Karen Hallings, Judy Jones and Candy Bezek for your help this week.

Pastor Kim spent time this week explaining Psalm 51, also known as the Psalm of David. It references  the Ten Commandments and how David asks  for repentance of his sins. It is important for us all to not lose sight of the Lord, even in our own failings. Use this Lent season as a call to action. Examine your life and see how you can connect with Christ as He prepares for His death on the cross. Don't forget Jesus died for us while we were yet sinners. In His death our sins have been forgiven. Leave your burdens and worries at the foot of the cross and take action in His name.

Branchport Methodist Church

On Easter Sunday, Christians all over the world celebrate the risen Lord.  As the Lenten season ends, we are faced with a mixture of emotions from extreme sadness as Christ is nailed to the cross to extreme joy when we realize he has risen from the dead.

We will be able to worship on Good Friday at 7 p.m. through Zoom with our sister church, Milo Center.  Pastor Kim will be providing the Zoom information to us. Contact her at 585-857-7962 if you wish to join us.

On Easter Sunday we will be joining the other Methodist churches for a sunrise service at Indian Pines Park at 7 am.  We will also be having our regular 10:45 service outdoors to accommodate more people and to be able to sing joyously the wonderful Easter hymns. We will still wear masks and practice social distancing.  Bring a lawn chair or sit in your car or stand with your family – all are welcome!


St. Michael’s Catholic

It was great to have families process with blessed palms and bring them to our parishioners who are still suffering isolation due to the pandemic.  We continue to pray for all who are suffering. 

Holy means set apart, special. Did you fashion those palms into crosses? Pray the pandemic themed Stations of the Cross (https://oec.dor.org/wp-content/uploads/sites/9/Collaborative-Stations-of-the-Cross-Pandemic-1.pdf), including images from St. Michael’s and 13 other diocesan churches?  During Holy Week, we encourage everyone to read of the Passion of our Lord and reflect on His great sacrifice for us.   

The shortest and holiest season of our year is the Triduum:  Holy Thursday, Good Friday and Holy Saturday. Jesus instituted the Eucharist, the great banquet of Thanksgiving commemorating the New Covenant on Holy Thursday.  Attend the Mass of the Last Supper and stay for adoration after.  At 3 p.m. on Good Friday, we will have the Service of the Cross.  The first Christians were scared and confused on the first Holy Saturday. We keep this day special by not doing too many ordinary things, but preparing for glorious Easter Sunday.  Call the parish office or online – www.eventbrite.com/o/our-lady-of-the-lakes-30433026332 

God be with you! 

Waneta Lake Baptist

The Waneta Lake Baptist Chapel is located at 8855 West Waneta Lake Road.

Our Good Friday Service will be at 6:30 p.m. April 2.   

Sunday School at 10 a.m. with Sunday Worship Service at 11 a.m. followed by lunch and fellowship at 12:15 p.m. There will be a Prayer Meeting Wednesday at 7 p.m.

Pastor Adam Hunt 607-292-6074