Church Briefs

Special to The Chronicle-Express

St. Michael's Catholic

We encourage everyone to participate in Plastic Free July. How many single-use plastics can we avoid purchasing? Learn more at  Thank you for any efforts to be good stewards of the earth. 

Also, let’s get rid of those hazardous waste items safely. Go to for info and to download the registration form for the hazardous waste collection on Aug. 28.  Registrations need to be made by Aug. 20.  

As a follower of Jesus, can we lend our voices to ensure that we build a better future that promotes the common good and protects the environment, the poor, and the vulnerable?  If yes, sign the petition at    

Still unsure about vaccines? Register for “Vaccines, Ventilators and the Ethics of COVID-19, July 28th at 7PM. Fr. Tad Pacholczyk, Director of Education at The National Catholic Bioethics Center in Philadelphia, directs the Center’s National Catholic Certification Program in Health Care Ethics. He is a priest of the diocese of Fall River, Massachusetts.  His free In-person talk will be at St. Bernard’s Seminary, Pittsford.  In person or online, register for it here: 

Bluff Point Methodist

So good to have members of the Bluff Point United Methodist choir back in church to add to our musicality!

Our scripture was Corinthians 1: 18-25. Pastor Sandi read scripture, and her message was based on what life is like after trauma. She uses the Covid trauma of these past 18 months that we have faced, to some of the writings of Paul in 54-56 AD writing letters to the people of Corinth.

Paul has made his journey. He tells the church to be a holy culture. During this time there is disbelief of Christianity, no Bible for people to read or learn from, and no history. People believing in Jesus are sometimes jailed or abused. One advantage at this time is that there are people around who knew Jesus and his teachings. In this letter, Paul addresses church discipline, the cross of Christ, incest, divorce, immorality, civil litigation and unity, among other topics.  

Today we find hope among tragedy by knowing we have Jesus, by the message of the cross, by our unity, and success in dealing with a world that sometimes seems crazy, and our hope which sustains us. 

Many of us will shortly be going on an evening cruise through the locks on the Erie Canal near Seneca Falls. We did this three years ago, and saw many birds and artifacts on our journey. Looking forward to it!

Ron Miller brought us information on the Hope Walk, coming up in August. All contributions stay in Yates County to help cancer patients and their families. Join our team, or buy a luminary in honor or memory of someone who has faced cancer!

Please join us on Sunday worship at 9 a.m. Our sanctuary is open and we also have Zoom options!

Penn Yan First Presbyterian 

During a normal year, churches usually look forward to a more relaxed pace in the summer. However, this past year and a half has been anything but normal. So this July has been busier than usual at FPC. Hopefully this can be viewed as a positive sign and the beginning of a return to some semblance of the “normal” life that many have greatly missed. Some regular activities have resumed and delayed events have now taken place. Plans are also being made for activities still on hold to begin again in August and September. We must always remember, “A man’s mind plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps.” Proverbs 16:9.

Our area churches were excited to once again be able to jointly host the traditional 4th of July weekend ecumenical service outdoors, at the Courthouse Park. It was well attended. Three local ministers participated in giving Communion and Pastor Paul offered a prayer. FPC’s Exercise/ Walking group is now back in Crosier Hall three days a week and has even more people with energy to burn. They have increased the number of classes to two, to accommodate this larger group and still allow for extra personal space. The lot behind the church on Clinton Street has recently been graded and seeded; the new grass is already poking up through the straw, our thanks to Hamm’s Landscaping. Twice in July, our PW and Deacons provided “Grab and Go” lunches for this important community program sponsored by The Living Well.

Many of our ladies have been busier this summer preparing food and baking, as there have been a few long delayed Celebration of Life services held in the past few weeks. Heartfelt thanks for all of their hard work in putting on these receptions. It has provided the opportunity for families to finally come together with friends and celebrate their loved ones in an uplifting and meaningful way. Sadly, we have had to say goodbye this month to another pillar of our church family, Peter Jackson. He was an active member at FPC for over fifty years serving as a deacon, trustee and elder. Peter loved Keuka Lake and the surrounding area and was a great advocate who served on many Boards and with many community associations. He will be greatly missed not only by his loving family and our church but also the entire community.

Dresden Methodist

Pastor Marilyn Wood's message: “There are no strangers in Jesus' life. He accepted everyone - prostitutes, lepers, and the outcasts of society. There are no strangers in church, only friends that we haven't met yet. Geese don't fly alone because they can increase their range by 70 percent by flying in a vee. They take turns being the leader because when one gets tired another becomes the leader. They honk to encourage the one who is out front. When a goose gets sick, two or more geese go down with that goose to be present with that goose and give it love and stand by it. We can learn from all of these things about geese.” 

Pastor Marilyn Wood at her retirement party at Dresden Methodist Church.

Marilyn presented a PowerPoint of photos of our church and its people over the years that she has been our minister, set to the music of Michael W. Smith's song, "Friends.” At the end of the PowerPoint, Marilyn had a message: "Thanks to all of you for the gifts. (We had a very nice retirement party for Marilyn) My being your pastor has been a time of joy and love. Each one of you has demonstrated God's love to me in various and unique ways. I can't believe that my time here is over and a new phase of my life has begun. God has brought us to this point and I believe will continue to show all of us His presence in various and marvelous ways. Know that I will be around but in a different way - back to being a lay member of my beloved church. God's richest blessings on all of you. Your pastor and friend, Marilyn"  We will definitely miss Marilyn as our Pastor, but wish her a very happy and blessed retirement. 

Dresden Methodist's new minister, Pastor Rachel Patchen, with her husband, Dan, and their two children.

We want to welcome our new Pastor, Rachel Patchen, who will be starting Aug. 1. She has been a member at Farmington UMC for the past seven years, and has served as their Community Groups Coordinator for the past five years. Rachel has a BA in Religion and Philosophy, and needs one more class to complete her MA in Theological Studies at Northeastern Seminary. She is currently a candidate for ordination in the UMC. Her family includes her husband, Dan, and their two children, Mason and Kaylee. We are looking forward to having her as our new Pastor.