Amber Congregational Church - My God and King, listen to my prayer.  Psalm 5:2
Our Weekly Schedule

Worship                           9:30 am
Sunday School              10:45 am

Choir Practice                 7:00 pm

Bible Study                     10:30 am

*The Lord's Table will be celebrated on the following Sundays in 2018; 
First Sunday in Epiphany - January 7,
First Sunday in Lent - February 18,
Maundy Thursday - March 29,
Second Sunday in Easter - April 8,
First Sunday in Pentecost - May 20,
Mid-Summer - July 15,
First Sunday in Kingdom - August 26,
Covenant Renewal Sunday - September 16,
World Communion Sunday - October 7,
All Saint's Sunday - November 4,
Thanksgiving Sunday - November 25,
First Sunday in Advent/Christmas - December 2.

Our Church's Value Statement and Purpose Statement

 We believe the central and primary value in life is relationship,
love relationships with God and with one another.

Loving relationships that are committed to God,
accountable to each other, involved in Christ’s transforming work in our world.


Our Schedule of Monthly Meetings in the Life of the Church


First Wed.                 Trustees                                                        8:00 pm 
First Sat.                    Elders                                                            9:30 am 
Second Wed.             Women’s Fellowship                               10:00 am 
Third Sat.                   Supper Club                                                6:00 pm
Last Sun.                    Congregation chooses hymns,  
                                        coffee hour after Worship


Third Sun of Odd Months       Worship Committee               12:00 pm
Third Sun of Even Months      Education Committee            12:00 pm
Third Wed of Even Months     Outreach Committee               8:00 pm


Last Wed of 1,4,7,10       Samaritan Committee                        8:00 pm
Third Sat of 2,5,8,11       Revitalization Committee                   9:30 am

2018 Holy Week Schedule
   Holy Week marks the last week in the life of Christ.  In an attempt to consider more deeply his life and teachings, and especially the activities of this last week, we have scheduled an event at church each day and encourage all to attend as many as they are able.  Our daily events vary in time, duration, focus and type of activity.  Following is a brief description of each day’s event and the Scripture stories that record what occurred on those days.  We have provided the text from each of the Gospels and encourage you to read all of these passages although we will not have time to discuss all of them in our meetings together. 
Cleansing Monday  March 26  (8:00-8:30 a.m.) 
   Scripture Reading – Matthew 21:12-17, Mark 11:12-19, Luke
   On this day Jesus cleansed the temple.  We will gather in the Kish Room for the reading of these Scriptures and a brief discussion of why Jesus considered this so important.
Teaching Tuesday  March 27  (6:30-8:00 p.m.)
   Scripture Reading – Matthew 21:18-26:13, Mark 11:20-14:9,
                                       Luke 19:47-21:38, John 12:20-50
   On this day Jesus taught in the temple.  In the evening he went out to Bethany where he ate and stayed overnight with friends.  Actually Jesus was in the temple teaching all week but we emphasis this activity together on Tuesday.  We will gather for supper together (bring a dish to pass) followed by Rev. Vern Groves teaching us from these lessons of Jesus.  Vern is the pastor of the United Church of DeRuyter.
Sly Wednesday  March 28  (8:00-8:30 a.m.)
   Scripture Reading – Matthew 26:1-4, 14-16, Mark 14:10-11,
                                       Luke 22:1-6
   On this day Scripture tells us that the religious leaders were looking for a “sly” way to arrest Jesus. This was done with the help of Judas Iscariot.  We will meet again in the morning in the Kish Room to read this account together and discuss briefly the idea of our own hidden decisions that ultimately deny or betray Jesus.
Maundy Thursday March 29  (7:00-8:00 p.m.)
   Scripture Reading – Matthew 26:17-30, Mark 14:12-31, Luke
                                       22:7-38, John 13:1-17:26
   In the evening of this day Jesus met with his disciples to observe the Passover meal.  He began by washing their feet and then serving them the elements of the Last Supper.  He spoke at great length with them before they left the upper room and went out to the Garden of Gethsemane.  We will meet together as his disciples to reenact and   remember the meaning of this night.
Good Friday  March 30  (3:00-3:30 p.m.)
   Scripture Reading – Matthew 26:36-27:61, Mark 12:32-15:47,
                                       Luke 22:39-23:54, John 18:1-19:42
   On this day Jesus was arrested, tried, beaten and crucified.  He hung on the cross from noon to 3:00.  We will gather in the sanctuary at 3:00 to remember the reality of his death and to ponder his last words from the cross. 
Holy Saturday  March 31  (8:00 a.m.- 8:00 p.m.)
   Scripture Reading – Matthew 27:57-66, Luke 23:55-56
   This is the day Jesus lay in the tomb, and, as the Apostles’ Creed states, “He descended into hell.”  Our church sanctuary will be open all day for folk to stop in, quietly read Scripture, pray and meditate on the cost Jesus paid for our salvation and how we should respond to his sacrifice.
Easter Sunday  April 1  (7:00-8:00 a.m.)
   Scripture Reading – Matthew 28:1-15, Mark 16:1-14, Luke
                                       24:1-49, John 20:1-23
   Early in the morning on this day Jesus rose from the dead.  Those that came to the tomb found it empty which produced a number of conflicting thoughts and emotions in his followers.  Joy and worship eventually filled their hearts and minds.  We will gather early to read these stories and to remember.  We will also share Communion   together followed by a simple breakfast.  Later we will return for our usual Sunday Morning Worship at 9:30. 

Worship News and Notes

   Lent is the season of preparation for Easter.  Interestingly this year Ash Wednesday fell on Valentine’s Day and Easter Sunday will fall on April Fool’s Day.  I suppose we could say of these that it is real love that prepares oneself for Easter and only the fool who doesn’t believe in the resurrection.  I’m sure others will try to make something else out of these calendar coincidences. 
   In our Sunday Worship we will be focusing on the stories of resurrection and what we can learn from them.  Easter is not the first resurrection story in the Bible, although it is the most important.  Join us in Worship each week as we discuss the lessons and applications in these supernatural events. 
Lenten/Easter Series
Learning from Resurrection Stories
Mar   4 – Elijah and the Widow’s
     Son: Obedience in the Face of
     Want  (1 Kings 17:7-24)
Mar 11 – Elisha and the
     Shunammite’s Son: Generosity in
     the Face of Hopelessness
     (2 Kings 4:8-37, 8:1-6, 13:20-21)
Mar 18 – Jesus and a Son and
     Daughter: Pleading in the Face of
     Fear  (Luke 7:11-17, 8:40-56)
Mar 25 – Jesus and a Close Friend:
     Belief in the Face of Delay
     (John 11:1-44, 12:12:1-19)
     Palm Sunday
April  1 – Jesus and the Holy Ones:
     Remembering in the Face of the
     Unseen  -  Easter Sunday
     (Matthew 27:50-54, Luke 24:1-8)
April  8 – Peter and the Older
     Woman: Proclamation in the Face
     of the Inevitable (Acts 9:36-42)
     Easter Communion
Apr 15 – Paul and the Young Man:
      Comfort in the Face of Alarm
      (Acts 20:7-12)
   Our average Worship attendance for the month of February was 62.  Our financial giving to date is $10,959 of the 2018 budget of $107,556. 
   We are pleased that the youth have agreed to participate in our Sunday Worship on a regular basis as Acolytes and during the Lenten Season as Lenten Readers.  But on March 18 the youth are going to assume almost all of the roles except that of  giving  the  sermon.  They  will be our Greeters, our Worship Leaders, and our Ushers.  They will introduce our songs, lead in our Scripture readings, tell our children’s story, and send us out with the benediction.  We are grateful for their willingness to do these acts of worship and pray that through involvement they might also gain in understanding and love for our Lord Jesus whom we all assemble weekly to worship.  Don’t miss this Sunday.  It promises to be a special one.

Sunday Schedules     

Please check when your date is and if you are unable to be present on that Sunday then change with someone else on the list. Thank you for your willingness to assist in our Sunday Worship.  

Mar   4 – Nancy Simmons, Donna
Mar 11 –Connie Amidon, Nancy
Mar 18 – Paige Swierk, Jessie Ryan
Mar 25 – Deb Eibert, Sally Wilson
Apr   1 – Dorothy Herold, Hamilton
   Worship Leader
Mar   4 – Nancy Barber
Mar 11 – Gail Frary
Mar 18 – Alex Locke-Wright
Mar 25 – Cathy Smith
Apr   1 – Sherry Persad
Mar  4 – Jeff Southard, Terry
Mar 11 – Mike Curtis, Chuck Harris
Mar 18 – Riley LaFrance, Lillian
     Coonradt, Ryan Swierk, Dahlia
Mar 25 – Deb O’Brien, Jim Frary
Apr   1 – Mark Henderson, Dave
Mar   4 – Paige Swierk, Dahlia
Mar 11 – Lillian Coonradt, Ryan
Mar 18 – Lilly Schultz, Riley
Mar 25 – Justin Heath, Rose Locke
Apr   1 – Lilly Schultz, Alex Locke-
Mar  4 – Cindy Casler
Mar 11 – Jenn Schultz
Mar 18 – Debi Southard
Mar 25 – Lynn LaFrance
Apr   1 – Cathy Smith

Outreach News and Notes

   The Friendship Luncheons will begin again in March.  They are held the first Wednesday of the month at noon.  The main purpose of these is to invite seniors out to share a meal and get together with others.  Our next one will be on March 7.  Come and bring a friend.
   A few years ago we changed the time for our Unity Acres collections from Christmas to Easter.  We now are collecting food and clothing items to take up to the men living there as well as toiletries and other small gifts for the men.  If you have items please drop them at the church office during the week of March 18-24 or call Jim Frary (315-427-3585).
LYFE Conference – June 7-9

   Women of All Ages: Please come to the annual LYFE conference. Gail Frary has signed up as group leader for the second week, June 7-9.  The cost, including housing, meals & snacks is only $170 (if you register before April 16).  The only other expense is the cost of dinner at Bingham's on the way home Saturday.  The accommodations are dorms at the college.  Very nice suites with 2 to a room with a lounge attached.
   This year, the keynote speaker is Sharon Jaynes.  Also highlighted are vocalist Kezia Curry and author/comedian Martha Bolton.  You can choose from a variety of interesting workshops.  There is also time to spend with your friends, possibly taking a walk around the water on the beautiful campus.  Please come with us for an informative, fun filled weekend!
   Check out the conference online (   Please  register  online  as: Individual in a Group.  Group Name:   Amber Congregational Church Marietta, NY.
   Feel free to tell your friends about it.  Any questions, please ask.  I might be able to answer them!  Gail Frary (Home 315-636-8417,  Cell 315-391-6443,


Education News and Notes

   Bible Study is a vital part of our Christian growth.  Everyone has a Bible and should make time on a regular basis for personal reading and study.  In addition, we offer a variety of opportunities to study Scripture together.  Please take advantage of whatever ones you are able to fit into your schedule.
   Sunday School classes for all ages are held after Worship each week.  Cathy Smith and Lisa McVicar have been teaching the younger children a survey of the New Testament.  This coming month we will have a change of teachers and Michelle Coonradt will take over this class.  It looks to be an interesting and valuable one for our kids.  The Adult Sunday School class is discussing the New Testament book of Romans using curriculum by Max Lucado entitled “In the Grip of Grace.”  The class leaders are Carl and Nancy Barber. Sunday School meets for one hour from 10:45 to 11:45.
   The Friday Bible Study is working their way through the short New Testament book of Colossians.  We have posted on the church bulletin board a schedule with the passage and topic listed for each Friday lesson.  It has us completing the study on March 16.  However, the weather in January forced a few cancellations so we are a couple of weeks behind that schedule.  There is a flow to the book but each lesson can stand alone as well so all are welcome to come to as many as they are able.  These weekly studies are held each Friday morning from 10:30 to 11:30.
   In addition, the church sponsors a Women’s Bible Study held at the home of Donna Sundwall, 2369 Patterson Road (315-636-1026).  They are using the video series by Joyce Meyer entitled “Battlefield of the Mind.”  They meet the second and fourth Saturday mornings of the month at 9:00.  The March meeting dates are the 10 and the 24. 
   We also want to continue to promote a faith partnership through our One-to-One meeting program.  There are several twosomes or threesomes meeting at their own times and places within the church family.  We certainly encourage all of you to find someone with whom you can spend some time with and together talk about Jesus.  It need only be a half-hour meeting every couple of weeks or so.  The Elders have printed up a handout listing some possible books that you could use and it is available in the Church Library. The goal is to strengthen each other’s faith by the simple task of building Christian friendships.  If you need other assistance in getting started just ask one of the Elders to help.
   Don’t forget the Church Library as a source for your own personal faith development.  We have books for all ages, novels and biographies as well as books on Christian living and issues of special concern.  We have a good selection of Bible teachings on cd’s and we are just beginning to get some dvd’s of Christian movies.  Stop by and browse or check the catalogue.  Our church librarian is Cheryl Curtis. 
   As our church purpose statement declares we believe in
“loving relationships that are committed to God, accountable to each other, and involved in Christ’s transforming work in our world.”
  Worship is about our commitment to God.  Accountability is what keeps us focused on learning and applying his truth to life.  This is what Christian education is all about. Accountable relationships develop naturally through the building of Christian friendships.  An easy, non-threatening beginning can be to come to our monthly Supper Club on the third Saturday of the month at 6:00 pm.  It is a dish-to-pass meal of potluck that always provides more than we can eat.  Of course the conversation around the table is enjoyable as well.  Last month there were twenty-two present.  Let’s increase that number on March 17.  Make St. Patrick proud and come share a meal together.

Birthdays and Anniversaries

   March Birthdays
Dan Schmidt (1), Karen Swierk, Angela Trendowski (2), Lynn LaFrance (4), Alyse Bradley (5), Cindy Casler (6), Dave Webster (13), Rick Chaffee (14), Nathan LaFrance (16), Jodi Just (17), Noreen Schmidt (19), Mark Stopyro (22), Sophia Tessier (23), Lilly Schultz (24), Sherry Persad (25)
   March Anniversaries
Jack and Janet Seymour (18).


  Sue Ellen Harris, LCSW-R has opened a counseling practice here at the church and will be taking appointments at 696-8521.  Mrs. Harris is a licensed Clinical Social Worker with 25 years of professional experience addressing oppositional behavior in children and youth, improving marital communication and family functioning, and treatment of depression, anxiety, PTSD, and complicated grief.  She will also be holding periodic informational sessions to the general public on a variety of counseling issues.  She practices a sliding scale fee structure.



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