CHURCH BRIEFS

Special to The Chronicle-Express

First Presbyterian 

Before December 2021 draws to a close, FPC would like to express their pride in two of our youth members. On Dec. 7, Kaden Steele was formally inducted into the National Honor Society. He was one of only 20 PYA students to be admitted this year. This was especially meaningful, as the U. S. National Honor Society was founded 100 years ago to recognize academic excellence nationwide. At the Elementary School level, Colt Wicker was chosen as the Dundee Rotary Student of the Month. He organized a fundraiser to purchase new books for the DCS Pre-K Program and Kindergarten. Both young men embody the traits of character and leadership to create and participate in activities that inspire positive change. Congratulations!

As we prepare to turn the page on a new year still filled with much uncertainty, our newly formed Digital Church Committee (DCC) had an idea. How can FPC create a beneficial way, using our evolving digital mediums, to continue to focus on moments of beauty and joy that can still be found in people’s lives each day? The DCC is now preparing to launch a program on FPC’s website called “The Beauty of God’s World.” They have asked our members to submit content of our interpretation of God’s beauty, as we encounter it in our own daily surroundings. “Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is beautiful, whatever is admirable, if anything is excellent or praiseworthy, think about these things” (Philippians 4:8). DCC is accepting submissions in written form, photographs, or video, sent to a special newly established email address or via a form on FPC’s website. Of course, using USPS or a call to the church works too! The goal is to remain in touch and share special moments or thoughts. It serves to remind us that even in the worst of times, there is always hope, beauty remains and in faith we remain strong together. We all pray for a happier and healthier 2022.

St. Mark's Episcopal

Since May of 2021, St. Mark's has been in transition between our past rector, Dan Burner, and our yet-to-be-named future rector.  In the Episcopal Church, a Search Committee is formed within the parish to find the new rector.       

Every Wednesday night since mid June, a dedicated group of strong willed and independently minded women from the parish met to do the hard work of gathering the materials and creating the picture of who we are to act as our “resume” for those priests who are searching for a new parish. First, the parish profile was created, which paints a picture of the things we have, the things we do, and even the things we lack. The building and grounds were discussed, including our beautiful stained glass windows and Columbarium. Our ministries, ranging from the knitting group, “The Purls,” to the reMarkable sharing shed, to the creation of St. Marks Terrace those many years ago, were compiled to create a picture of how we interact lovingly with our community. The community itself was highlighted, trying to create a picture of the beauty that surrounds us. Our strengths and weaknesses were discussed, amended, and yes, even argued about, but finally agreed upon. A prayer for discernment was, of course, where the profile began. 

A survey was done by the entire St. Mark's Episcopal parish that highlighted the things most important in their search for a new rector. Compiling the results of that survey was both informative and enlightening and became the Rector’s profile.

The fun really began when a survey was done by the entire parish that highlighted the things most important. Compiling the results of that survey was both informative and enlightening and became the Rector’s profile.  

After the profile was completed, it was submitted to the Office of Transitional Ministry.   The contact there will post the profile and begin to compile a list of those who are interested. From there, an approval is required, the interviews are done, visits are arranged, and eventually, a new Rector is selected. The profile has been submitted, and the first phase of work is done. The Search Committee celebrated this huge accomplishment in mid-December and looks forward to the next exciting interview phase.    

In the meantime, we still share Sunday mornings with one another and hope you will join us.  

Bluff Point Methodist

Your Gift is All We Need! Christmas is upon us! Remington Perry and Matthew Sorensen lit the fourth Advent candle on Sunday. Christmas is upon us, and we need advice and a blessing. Pastor Sandi continued with the story of the Wise Men. The wise men followed the star to find the Christ Child. The wise men were sent by a jealous and enraged king, although they were not going to follow his directions as they went to seek Jesus. 

Meredith Nielsen reads scripture on the fourth Sunday of Advent at Bluff Point United Methodist Church.  Thank you, Meredith, our December scripture reader!

This year many of us have had loss of hopes and dreams.  We need to listen to God and be people of hope and joy. Pastor Sandi asked us whom we gather our information from. Is it the neighbors, Facebook or Instagram? Or do we seek answers from the Bible? Sometimes we may not like the answers. Temptations may be knocking at our door. What are we seeking?  Pastor Sandi showed us that we need to be cautions about kicking open a door. God will not bless what he does not open.  We need to seek what God has in store for us. 

Our Christmas church preparations have included our Angel tree family, and our reverse Advent calendar, collecting items of food and supplies for The Living Well. This is the season of giving and remembering others. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year 2022. Hopes for a healthy and joyful new year from BPUMC!

Penn Yan First Baptist

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year One and All!

During the months of January and February, we will hold our worship services in the Great Room as our sanctuary will be getting a fresh coat of paint (courtesy of WBR Painting) and new carpet (courtesy of Cole's Furniture and Floor Fashions). Also, our schedule of guest preaching for the month of January shall be in this order: Rev. Don Lawrence, B. Dale Wakley, B. Dale Wakley, Rev. Dr. John R. Tharp, and Brian Bleiler. Everyone is welcome to come to visit our worship services and meet our church family. Join us Sundays at 10 a.m.

Dresden Methodist

This past week was the fourth week of advent — the theme was love. At Dresden UMC, Pastor Rachel Patchen spoke about what love is. The love of God and the love Christians are called to radiate out into the world is not merely a feeling. Most of us think of that warm and fuzzy feeling we get inside when with certain people — our kids, partners, friends, and family. But in the Bible, love becomes something else. The '90s Christian rap/hip-hop group, DC Talk, put it best — "Luv is a Verb." The type of love that God has for all people is not just a feeling; it is in the actions that God takes for us all. Love is active; love is a verb! So this Christmas season, take a moment to reflect on how you can love someone you know. Many people need love in our world — not just to be told they are loved but to see it in how they are treated. Remember, Luv is a Verb!

Announcements: Christmas Eve Candlelight service will be held at 9 p.m. at Dresden UMC. We will enjoy carols and lessons together as we prepare for Christmas day. We invite you to join us— all are welcome here; we'll save you a seat! 

On Sunday, Dec. 26, we invite you to come for Sunday worship at 9:30 a.m. It will be informal and held in our dining hall. There will be coffee and donuts; we will enjoy some fellowship time, sing some Christmas carols and hymns, and share our favorite Christmas memories.