Shorelight Newsletter - In the Life of our Church
Visit often to learn more about our activities and our focus on Worship, Christian Education and Outreach.
Our Communion (The Lord's Table) Schedule is as follows:
First Sunday in Epiphany - January 12
First Sunday in Lent - March 1,
Maundy Thursday - April 9,
Second Sunday in Easter - April 19,
First Sunday in Pentecost - May 31,
Mid-Summer - July 12,
First Sunday in Kingdom - August 30,
Covenant Renewal Sunday - September 13,
World Communion Sunday - October 4,
All Saint's Sunday - November 1,
Thanksgiving Sunday - November 22,
First Sunday in Advent/Christmas - November 29.
So far we have had no real difficulties with our two-service format. To be sure, I haven’t heard anyone say that they like the fact that not all of us can gather together but we are still able to meet without significant complications. We are wearing masks. We are disinfecting the building and using hand sanitizers regularly. There are still some who are a bit leery of this kind of group setting and we appreciate the caution of everyone to insure personal safety. If you are unable to be with us in person we are posting the services online in an audio format. Do take advantage of this by visiting our church website (www.amberchurch.org) and then clicking on “Worship Services” at the top right of the homepage. The services are listed there by date.
Our Sunday Worship times are 9:30 and 11:00 with the Adult Sunday School Class following at 12:15. Our average attendance has been larger in the first service (33) than the second (14), giving us a total average attendance of 47. We are socially-distanced to accommodate 45 in each service so we are well within those guidelines. Our giving has remained fairly steady during this time and we have received $70,656 toward our budget of $115,122.
We are continuing our focus on Passionate Spirituality as the characteristic from last year’s church survey that we thought we should give some special attention to in the life of our church. In essence this is a review of what it means to be a Christian. We have discussed the questions “What Is a Christian?” and “What Is a Disciple?” This coming month we will review “What Do We Believe?” The sermons there will focus on God as revealed in the three persons of the trinity. Following that we will discuss what the church is and how we are to find our place within it. Please note the topics listed each week and read the Scripture passages referenced there in preparation for our time together.
Passionate Spirituality: Its Beliefs
What Do Christians Believe?
It’s All about God!
Sep 6 – The Father (Matthew 6, 1 Corinthians 8,
Sep 13 – The Son (Colossians 1, Psalm 75)
Sep 20 – The Holy Spirit (Romans 8, Psalm 80)
Passionate Spirituality: Its Body
What Is the Church?
It’s All about the Head!
Sep 27 – The Church Universal and Local (Matthew
16:13-20, Psalm 87)
Oct 4 – The Church as Body (1 Corinthians 12,
Oct 11 – The Church as Temple (Ephesians 2:19-22,
Oct 18 – The Church as People, Priesthood, Nation
(1 Peter 2:4-10, Psalm 105:12-36)
Christian Education News
The Friday Bible Study meets each week in the Kish Room from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. We are working our way through the Gospel of Mark. Please feel free to join in at any time. All are welcome.
The Adult Sunday School Class meets after the second Worship Service. We begin at 12:15 and go to 1:00. The topic for discussion is the Psalms of the Sons of Korah. There are two short collections of them in the Psalms, 42-49 and 84-89. Rick Chaffee is leading the class but we practice a kind of open forum approach. All are encouraged to share their thoughts but no one is ever required to speak. Come join us.
Please be in prayer for the start of the new school year. Not only are the public and private schools beginning with a kind of temporary “let’s-see-how-it-goes” plan, but many households are impacted with difficult choices regarding childcare and employment. Everyone seems a bit on edge. And let’s pray especially for our college kids and the issues and difficulties that they are encountering. Here is a list of those with church connections: Kaycee Bailer, Chad Casler, Maggy Coonradt, Cahil Donovan, Megan Heath, Alex Henderson, Riley LaFrance, Ashley Seymour, Mary Frances Seymour, Alex Locke-Wright, Brianna Wolf, Emily Wolf. This is a stressful time for students, for parents, and for teachers. As you pray ask God how you, how we, can help.
Quilt by Mary Santee - given to Gail as she battles cancer. Prayed over on 2/2/2020.
Services have resumed, however, we are holding off on greeters, acolytes and nursery until these activities are safe.
If you will not be able to serve, please find a substitute
Outreach News and Notes
Do remember the small gift bags which contain a few snacks, toiletries and Christian literature that you can give to the homeless who stand at intersections in the city requesting handouts. These are available for you to pick up at church. Why not keep one or two in the car to have available when you make that next drive to Syracuse.
Just a reminder that the ministry of Helping Hands is still available for those needing transportation to a doctor’s appointment or other necessary trip. Jim Frary is the person to call for assistance. His phone number is 315-427-3585.
In these trying days folk are using the food pantries more than ever. Our collection of non-perishable items are given to the Marcellus Food Pantry. We would like to suggest that for the month of September you donate peanut butter, cooking oils, or honey. These items may be placed in the plastic bins in the main entrance or the Kish Room. We will see to their delivery to the food pantry.
We would like to begin a pen-pal program with residents at Teen Challenge or His Mansion. If you are interested in corresponding with someone, sharing an encouraging word and perhaps exchanging prayer requests, please speak to Cathy Smith. She will try to get you connected (315-456-9198, email@example.com).
The Samaritan Fund stands ready to provide emergency confidential financial assistance to those in need. If you know of a situation that we can address, please contact any member of the committee directly. Financial contributions to the fund are also always appreciated. (Members: Faith Stopyro, Cathy Smith, Jim Frary, Mark Henderson, Cheryl Curtis, Rick Chaffee.)
The words that the insurance industry uses to describe the kind of events that have no human cause are “acts of God.” Into this category fall the lightning igniting fires that are burning across California and hurricane Laura that devastated portions of Texas and Louisiana. Some would also put Covid-19 into this group. These are tragedies that cannot be blamed on individuals as they are beyond human control.
Before any folk jump to the conclusion, with Scripture texts quoted, that these are the judgment of God on a disobedient and rebellious people it might be appropriate to first look within oneself. Jesus said, “Those eighteen who died when the tower in Siloam fell on them – do you think they were more guilty than all the others living in Jerusalem? I tell you, no! But unless you repent, you too will all perish” (Luke 13:4-5). Then he told a parable about an unfruitful tree that was not cut down but rather was cared for, fertilized and watered for an extended period of time in hopes that it would make a full and productive recovery. Shouldn’t that be our response to those in need around us?
Let’s begin by simply praying. Pray for those who are in the midst of a crisis that they cannot control or extricate themselves from. Pray for those who have lost loved ones, and for those whose property and possessions have been destroyed. Pray for the peace of God to calm their souls and to give them hope. Pray that the relief efforts and the medical research will bring some healing and restoration to the wounded and the hurting survivors. Pray for wisdom for yourself that you can be directed to some means of useful participation in the relieving of the needs of others in the name of Jesus. Pray that somehow in the midst of all of this loss and devastation that people will turn to Jesus so as to not face the eternal loss of their souls. Amen.
Fun Events to attend
Friday Nov 20 at 7pm. Doors open at 6pm
Birthdays and Anniversaries
Linda Henderson (6)
Deb Eibert (7)
Danielle Mudge (10)
Andrew Henderson (13)
Duane Wright (16)
Megan Heath (17)
Cheryl Curtis (20)
Hamilton McCarthy (20)
Cody Wheeler (28)
Carole Ianuzi (30)
Zachary McDonough (30)
Jeff and Deb Southard (7)
Jim and Gail Frary (26)
Larry and Carol Wheeler (29)
The Full Circle Tour - Ladies don't miss the opportunity to hear Jan Silvious, Patsy Clairmont and Anita Renfroe. Formerly of Women of Faith, they will be at The Gathering Place in North Syracuse on Friday, April 24th at 7:oo pm. Tickets are $30. For more information please see Gail Frary (315-636-8417) or Deb O'Brien (315-420-2471)
Barn Quilt Painting Project - The Fun Committee is sponsoring another event, a barn quilt painting project on March 28th from 10 am to 2pm. The cost is $10 which includes lunch. Please register by contacting either Kristin heath (315-378-5182) or Cathy Smith (315-456-9198)