February 2014 Crossroads

Legends of the Celtic Harp with Patrick Ball, Lisa Lynne & Aryeh Frankfurter at BPC
Sunday March 23, 3:00 pm
Admission: $15.00

LEGENDS OF THE CELTIC HARP – with Patrick Ball, Lisa Lynne & Aryeh Frankfurter
Three of the premier Celtic harpers in the world, Patrick Ball, Lisa Lynne and Aryeh Frankfurter have created a dramatic ensemble that takes you deep into the myths, magic and fabled history of this most captivating instrument. You will hear three harps, Swedish Nyckelharpa, Cittern, Irish Bouzouki and more. History, humor and heartwarming stories are woven together with enchanting music both ancient and new. http://www.LegendsOfTheCelticHarp.com

Lazarus at the Gate: An economic discipleship study
Are you interested in learning what the Bible says about our gifts of wealth, and learning practical ways to more effectively serve our neighbors and fight poverty?

This year, The Presbyterian Church in Burlington is exploring these ideas with the Boston Faith and Justice Network (BFJN), a gathering of Christians from many different traditions sharing a common concern to love our neighbors through economic discipleship: following Jesus with our money.

The church will be exploring this idea of economic discipleship with BFJN’s Lazarus at the Gate Bible Study during Lent. This 8-session curriculum will take place following worship each Sunday from February 9 – April 6 (no workshop on Feb 16-holiday weekend). Each session will include a light lunch (soup and salad) and last about 1 ½ hours. It is best if participants commit to the entire course.

Lazarus at the Gate allows small groups to explore economic discipleship by studying biblical themes on wealth and poverty; sharing personal budgets; making changes, small and large, to live more simply and spend more justly. The program ends with participants contributing to a group gift to fight poverty in the name of Christ. The Lazarus program helps groups make four commitments:

  • Spend joyfully Regularly give thanks for the blessing of what we have
  • Spend justly Make one lifestyle change to consume more justly
  • Spend less Make one lifestyle change to spend less for ourselves
  • Give more Make a gift to fight poverty

    Our group will be challenged to make personal changes to spending choices to save money and with the savings, give more effectively toward a few charities of the group’s choosing.

    Just as an example, six members of the Lazarus at the Gate study group at Cornerstone Church of Boston recently donated over $19,000 to sponsor children in the Congo through Covenant Kids Congo, a partner of World Vision! Only six people! You can read about that here: http://blogs.covchurch.org/covenantkidscongo/cornerstone-called-to-restoration-work/. Stories of other groups that have gone through the study can be found on the BFJN Website: (bostonfaithjustice.org.)

    Please talk with Millie (emlydgrammy@comcast.net) or Alex (alex@bostonfaithjustice.org) if you have any questions or would like to sign up.

    Deacon’s Corner
    As most of you know, the deacons have an Emergency Fund that helps members of the congregation in times of duress. We have had to tap into that fund a few times in 2013. The fund is diminishing. We are asking your help in replenishing it for 2014. You will find envelopes in the pockets in the pews marked Emergency Fund. Please try to give what you can to help.

    Thank you!

    Confirmation Classes

    Confirmation classes will be beginning on Sunday February 9. Youth of eligibility age should have already been contacted. More information to follow. Please see Rod with any questions.

    Seeking Simplicity

    Are you feeling stressed out after the holiday frenzy? Do you feel like you have lost control of parts of your life? This is just the time to take a break and come to a retreat. On February 1st, from 9:30 AM to 3 PM we will discuss together what steps we can make to simplify our lives. We will enjoy a pot-luck lunch together. Each person will have a chance to de-stress by enjoying a choice of activity. Plans are still in progress but likely to include the following: low-impact movement and meditation called Gigong; livelier music and dance; an art project; or learning to cook something new. And of course there will be times of worship and praise.

    As a bonus, all will have a chance to preview the Lazarus at the Gate discipleship curriculum. This will give folks a chance to see whether they want to sign up for the eight week course which will begin on February 16th and continue through Lent. Be assured, however, that even if you are not able to attend the retreat, you can still sign up for the course.

    Because we want to maintain a fairly calm, quiet environment, we do not plan to offer child care at this event. However, if you really want to attend and this is an issue, please talk to Rod or Millie and we will see if we can work something out for you.

    Begin thinking about what simplicity means to you. Here are a few quotes to start you off: “Simplicity is making the journey of this life with just baggage enough.” ~ Charles Warner
    “As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be simpler; solitude will not be solitude, poverty will not be poverty, nor weakness weakness.” ~ Henry David Thoreau

    We look forward to seeing you on Feb 1st (snow date – Feb 8th)

    YAV Report from Alex Haney
    Before this year, my idea of simplicity has always been about being cheap, conserving resources and helping the environment; it was never a church thing. Yet the last few months of retreat planning, bible study with the YAV program, and work with BFJN, I’ve seen that simplicity is something God wants us to do also.

    It goes beyond being a hippie and riding your bike. In fact, it goes way back to before there were hippies. The Old Testament prophets have been shouting God’s command for us to take care of the poor, the orphans, the widows, and those who can’t take care of themselves since they first heard God’s voice. Some sound pretty harsh on what happens if we don’t. Commandment #10 says not to covet, and we are told to love our neighbor. Jesus asked the rich man to sell his possessions give the money to the poor and follow him.

    As Christians, we are to seek ways to help those in need. How simply we can do this by loving thy neighbor, sharing resources, and not taking more than our share. These are just a part of “simplicity.” Freeing ourselves from our own wants and complexities, inside and out, brings us closer to God and allows us to be aware of and love our neighbor. In today’s world most of the economic activity we support can exploit the poor, the oppressed, the widows and orphans. That’s where local food and fair trade comes in the picture. God wants us buying things that build up the earth and the people involved rather than exploit them for profit, leaving people and the planet poor, desolate and homeless.

    Simplicity is not easy. It’s complicated. It’s all about being self-aware of your motivations, your actions and your thoughts and then being intentional about what you do, and how you treat one another. That’s the spirituality of it. It is an inward simplicity and an outward simplicity, and a corporate simplicity as a body of Christians. The simple life isn’t the easy one, but the self-aware and intentional one.

    Yes, God does want us to conserve our energy resources, to use less stuff, to throw away less, and to think about things before we do them because that builds up the widows, the oppressed, the poor, and the hungry. I now live simply not only to be cheap, not only to use less fossil fuels, but because these are ways I can love my neighbors more. These are ways I can focus on God more than my stuff. Simplicity allows me to ignore distractions so I hear and feel God, and the love of those around me, and I can show this love more freely.

    Our retreat all about simplicity is fast approaching for Saturday February 1 from 9:30 am to 3:00pm. I’d encourage you to come share your own thoughts and hear others about simplicity. Whether you make it or not, I’d encourage you to refer to the bibliography of resources from the retreat to learn more about living simply as a Christian discipline. I’d recommend Living More with Less by Doris Jane Longacre and Richard J. Foster’s Freedom of Simplicity. Those inspired this article.

    Other Food Justice News
    Manna Mondays
    Are you ready for a President’s Day like no other?! Sign your kids up for the first ever Manna Monday on February 17 (1pm-4pm) for an afternoon of pasta-making and wheat-milling! We will explore the biblical stories of manna from heaven, grind flour from wheat berries, and make pasta from scratch! As the Hebrews in the desert depended on manna from God (a starchy wafer substance) for sustenance, we depend on the earth, and the long process from start to finish for eating things like noodles and bread. Have your kids join us to learn all about, manna, pasta, and flour! School aged kids, (K-12) are welcome. A mid-afternoon snack will be provided. Sign-up in the fellowship hall or by phone with the church office (781-272-9190) by February 10 to reserve a spot. Contact Alex if you’d like to help supervise. alex@bostonfaithjustice.org

    Boston Faith and Justice Network (BFJN) Update
    Millie and Alex will begin teaching BFJN’s Lazarus at the Gate Curriculum on Sundays for 1.5 hours after worship starting February 9. It will last for 8 weeks until March 30. The class will examine the biblical themes of wealth, poverty, and generosity with real life ways to make a difference for the kingdom of heaven through our spending choices. Personal spending habits will be shared. The goal of this candor is to create an opportunity for a change in lifestyle to more effectively fight poverty and to make that change with the support of the group. A light lunch of soup and salad will be provided. Sign up in the fellowship hall. See Alex or Millie with questions.
    For those who cannot attend Lazarus at the Gate but would like to learn more about economic discipleship, BFJN is looking for participants in a brand new initiative to get Christians thinking about generosity with our tax refunds! Contact Alex for more information.

    Local Farm Connections
    Keep an eye out for brochures from local farms. This summer we hope to offer connections with more farms than just Farmer Dave’s! If things go according to plan we hope to have eggs, meat, cheese, and other farm-fresh products available to Burlington area residents on Mondays during the Farmer Dave’s pick up. See Alex or send him an E-mail if you know of local farms or growers you want to see involved. alex@bostonfaithjustice.org.

    News from the Philippines
    January 8, 2014

    Dear Friends,
    Today marks the second month since the most powerful and destructive typhoon on record devastated the central islands of the Philippines –- over 6,000 dead, 2,000 missing, I million homes destroyed, 4 million displaced. You responded in several ways — through clothing donations and funds for shipping costs, donations to Project C.U.R.E., funds to support a health clinic in one of the central islands, financial aid for students at Silliman University who lost family members and livelihood in the islands of Leyte and Samar. Thank you for your continuing prayers, long after the typhoon is no longer in the news cycle of international disasters.

    Here are some updates:

    Bart and I shall have sent 10 big boxes of donated clothing by the end of this month. They will be distributed by church groups to survivors in Leyte and towns in Northern Cebu. Those who survived the storm lost everything. Several of my relatives who were spared the fury of the storm are helping with the distribution process.

    Project C.U.R.E. (www.projectcure.org ) has sent two 20-foot container vans of medical supplies and equipment to a heavily-damaged hospital in Tacloban, Leyte, and the epicenter of the storm. This hospital continues to see hundreds of patients a day despite overwhelming limitations and welcomes the arrival of donated emergency supplies and equipment.

    The funds for financial aid to students in need at Silliman University, where Bart and I have done volunteer work recently, will be used specifically to help senior students graduate this March. This Presbyterian school is committed to finding ways of keeping 200 college students in school despite the incalculable loss of their homes and their parents’ livelihood.

    In one of the islands that the typhoon missed by 15 miles, there is a grassroots health clinic that needs basic medical supplies and is run by volunteer doctors and nurses. Bart and I are advocating for this Christian-based outreach to rural folks with no access to medical care. Some of you designated your financial contributions for this on-going project with a future.

    What to pray for in this period of rebuilding and reconstruction: The United Nations estimates that the recovery period for a disaster of this magnitude is 5 to 6 years, so the Philippines has barely just begun. These are some of the immediate needs:

    That the primary need for shelter be made available to the thousands of displaced families.
    That those on the ground who are helping (doctors, social workers, nurses, and volunteers) will be given the strength to persevere, as they too have to deal with their own trauma.
    That honest government officials handling foreign aid will put the people’s welfare first.
    That the survivors will not lose hope in the midst of unimaginable loss and tragedy.
    Our deep gratitude for your partnership,

    Priscilla and Bart Kelso

    Friday Night at the Movies!
    Friday, February 14, 7:00 pm
    Feature Presentation to be announced
    (watch your bulletin)
    Free! Bring friends! Popcorn!

    Crafter’s Group
    The Crafter’s Group will suspending their meeting in Feb, Mar & Apr. Please plan on joining us in the Spring. Bring those projects you’ve been meaning to finish, but just haven’t gotten around to.

    Bridges: Growing Older, Growing Together
    “The Burlington School System is privileged to incorporate the “Bridges: Growing Older, Growing Together” program into some of our 4th grade classes. This wonderful program pairs volunteer senior citizens with small groups of children in the classroom for an hour a week, over a 6 week session. During this time, the children have the opportunity to get to know a senior and to learn from their experiences. It is a wonderful opportunity for kids to learn about a different generation and for seniors to have the opportunity to see how children learn today. So much has changed in our schools and our approach to teaching. For this program to be successful, we need seniors who are willing to volunteer an hour of their time once a week for a 6 weeks session. Many enjoy it so much they ask to do more than one session! Sessions take place at different times over the course of the second half of the school year. (Depending on the school). If you know a senior, grandparent or neighbor, who would enjoy getting to know some fourth graders, please encourage them to fill in an application at the Senior Center.

    Any questions may be emailed to Caroline Mallard at cmallard1@hotmail.com, list “Bridges” in the subject line. For more information on this nationwide program: http://www.bridgestogether.org/”

  • October 2013 Crossroads

    Deacons Corner
    The deacons would like to thank you for all of your donations toward the school kit/Rally Day project. It was a huge success. We could not have done it without all of your help.

    The Dwelling Place
    It is with mixed emotion that we are announcing that we will be ending our relationship with The Dwelling Place. We would like to thank all of you for the generous support you have given over the last 20 plus years. You have given your time, your hands and your money and it has been greatly appreciated. Our last supper will be on November 20, 2013.

    CE News
    Do you have children?
    Have you filled out their registration form for church school yet?
    We need one registration form from each family for children in nursery to grade 12.
    You can access the form on the church website or you can get one from the CE mailbox in the church office. Then either email the form to the church, or return the completed form to the CE mailbox. Thanks from the CE Committee.

    Mark Your Calendars
    (Or link your calendar to the Church’s Google calendar)

    Friday Night at the Movies
    October 11, 7:30 pm
    A movie about a New Mexican farmer and town who face a crisis when business and political interests conspire to divert their water supply for a resort development. With determination, and even a bit of magic, the local population forces a confrontation…in a unique blend of social commentary and comedy.

    Free! Popcorn! Bring friends!

    Crafter’s Night, October 18
    7 pm

    Come join in. We are still attempting to get the blankets for Warm Up America completed, but feel free to come with your own project whatever your craft may be. We would love to see it! There may be others who share your love of that craft. Come learn something new that you’ve always wanted to try.

    Women’s Bible Study
    Thursdays at 9:30 am
    We are pleased to announce that we were chosen to be one of the field test groups for next year’s Presbyterian Women’s Bible Study, Water. This is a nine week study, with an agreement to provide feedback on each lesson. Confidentiality must be signed in order to participate. Any woman in the congregation is welcome to join in the field test, not just those currently attending Bible study.

    Using your spiritual gifts to help you and your church grow.
    Join us on October 19th from 9am to 3pm, as we discover and explore our Spiritual gifts. We are using the assessment from “Discover Your Spiritual Gifts the Natural Way”. Individuals will complete an assessment (it takes about 30 min.) and then we will come together to discuss our findings. Everyone will bring their own lunch-snacks and beverages provided….plenty of activities and opportunities for sharing will be available.

    Cost is $10.00 to pay for materials.

    Come and enjoy!

    OCTOBER 25, is the Annual Pumpkin Party at 6:30pm. We will supply the pumpkins you supply the tools and creativity. We will have markers for small children who are not ready to carve a pumpkin!
    We will have storytelling, too!!!!

    Mission and Outreach
    Habitat for Humanity of Greater Lowell (HFHGL) has given BPC the date of October 12th for our build day at 49-55 Rock Street in Lowell. We can send a group of up to 12 people, and will be working from 8 am to 3 pm.

    We will be working on 1 of 2 duplexes that will be home to 4 families. Students from Greater Lowell Technical High School are building one duplex and general volunteers and local companies are building the other one. The project broke ground on October 25, 2012, and is now nearing completion.

    People who want to participate but don’t feel comfortable working with tools, can play an important role by providing lunch for the volunteers working on the homes.

    Since its founding in 1991, HFHGL has built or renovated a total of 28 homes in Bedford, Billerica, Concord, Lowell, Reading, and Westford. HFHGL projects have placed more than 100 people into quality housing. Not only do Habitat families pay for their homes through a monthly mortgage, they also put in between 225 and 400 hours of sweat equity prior to becoming homeowners.

    Habitat for Humanity’s vision is a world where everyone has a safe and decent place to live and housing poverty and homelessness are eliminated.

    For more information about volunteering with BPC’s team, contact Tom Hennings.

    Annual Stewardship Campaign – Planting a Seed

    Once again it is nearing the time to respond to God’s grace in our lives and to celebrate the good work that God will do by identifying the gifts we provide. As John Calvin once said: “ We are surrounded by God’s benefits. The best use of these benefits is an unceasing expression of gratitude.”

    Gratitude can be shown in many ways. When we think of stewardship, we typically think of fundraising, but there are also the gifts of time and talents that a small church like Burlington Presbyterian needs in order to move forward and provide the rich programs we currently enjoy.

    A retreat this month will focus on discovering our spiritual gifts. Even if you do not get a chance to attend this retreat, it is a good time of year to sit down and take stock of what abilities and attributes you have that you can share with others. You may be organized and also willing to direct others – chairing a committee for a special project may be a gift you could share. You may be shy, but enjoy music – joining one of the choirs would be something to try.

    In the winter and spring, we are going to focus on Living Simply and plan to host several opportunities to explore more about how to do that. For this newsletter, I would just like to “plant a seed” of a thought – that when people spend money on things they do not really need, they also begin to want more things they do not need. Jesus told us that our hearts will follow our money (Matthew 6:21) “For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.” His words suggest that if we are unsure where our hearts are, looking at where our treasure is spent or contained may give us a clue.

    There will be more thoughts sent to you about stewardship over the next month. We will follow our tradition of thankfully presenting out pledges and offerings on Harvest Sunday which will be on November 24th this year. Between now and then, please think about how grateful you are for all God provides in your life. Pray and act on the confidence that God’s abundance will not cease, but will grow proportionately as we give generously of our time, resources, and talents.

    “Remember this,” Paul says, “whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously. Each person should decide to give what he has decided to give in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things and in all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.” (2 Corinthians 9:6-8)

    Taking Time

    Certainly God is not a god in a hurry. That’s clear.
    – John Polkinghorne, physicist and Anglican priest, on NPR’s On Being

    God took a Sabbath. We might think that, once the Creator had gotten all the parts in place, God would be anxious to rush on to the next steps. But no, God rested on the seventh day. And ever since, God’s processes seem to be slow and deliberate.

    Clearly, we are more advanced than God (!) We no longer seem to require a regular time for resting and soaking in the goodness of all that God created. Many of us are wired, or wi-fi’d, to work and other concerns even when we make a pretense of Sabbathing.

    Apparently, we also have a leg up on our parents (or grandparents), too. Going through some old books to donate to BPC’s yard sale, I found an aged clipping from a WWII newspaper. Quote: Vacations are recognized by government officials as important to the health, welfare and efficiency of the American public during the time of all-out war effort, and the limited use of the automobile for a vacation…is not inconsistent with conservation nor is it un-patriotic. During the all-out effort of that war, Americans were still encouraged by our government to go on vacation!

    When we do not Sabbath, or allow adequate time to appreciate the goodness of God’s creation, a lot of things get left behind – including reverence for God and fully valuing the lives of those most precious to us. Our children learn from our hyperactive, hyper-connected patterns.

    It seems to me that one of the greatest joys of real time away from the pressures of work, even if it is just for a brief time each day, is the luxury of paying attention. When we cease trying to focus on multiple issues or electronic devices, we can be more intentional, mindful, of each thing we see or do. John Walsh, author and art historian, in a speech at Wheaton College, said:
    Do one thing at a time. Give each experience all your attention. Try to resist being distracted by other sights and sounds, other thoughts and tasks, and when it is, guide your mind back to what you’re doing.

    This is a discipline which we can learn to work on as we go about our everyday tasks. But even better, maybe it could start with some genuine Sabbath time, or vacation, this summer.

    It is a good way to become re-acquainted with that slow-paced God of scripture.



    June 2013 Crossroads

    Hunger Walkers make strides…
    This year’s team from BPC hit a new high of approximately $3,000 for Project Bread. Linda Roscoe, Sue McGilvray-Rivet and Caitlin Rivet, the McIninch family, Tara Goss and Spencer Goss, Angela Wantate, Kevin Haley and Kelley O’Hearne are BPC walkers we know of; there may have been more. Bless you for your service.

    Many folks contributed as we provided space and refreshments for Boston Presbytery, meeting at BPC on May
    20. Special thanks to Judy Brunner, Sally Morrison and the Hospitality Committee.
    And thanks to our Deacons, especially Barbara Karanja, Sally Morrison, and Annette Chapman-Adisho, for organizing and leading a splendidly delicious International Dinner on May 4 – with donations going to our Hunger Walk team. (How did Sally manage to get so many people singing in various languages??)

    July 4 Parade…
    Watch for more info from the Hospitality Committee about our opportunity to provide some hosting (mainly in the form of goodies) for groups who will be forming up for Burlington’s July 4 parade. The parade will begin at the intersection in front of the church and proceed to the Common.

    Deacons Corner
    The Deacons would like to thank everyone who participated in our International Dinner. It was a huge success. Everyone ate well and had a fun time, especially with Miss Sally’s arm twisting for songs!!! We are especially thankful that we were able to help contribute to the “Walk for Hunger”. A “special” thank you goes out to Annette Chapman-Adisho for entertaining the children!!

    The Food Pantry does not have any requests this month. Please donate whatever you feel would be appropriate
    for the month of June.

    The Dwelling Place served 14 guests a wonderful spaghetti and meatball supper in May.

    George has a birthday coming up on June 22nd. There will be cards available on the church table for you to take and send to him. He loves to receive cards!

    New Mission Opportunities for BPC

    The Mission Exploration Team was called together in October to explore how God is calling this congregation to be faithful in mission now, including but not limited to how we are involved with the communities around us and how our facilities may be used. The members of the team were Ken Dewar, Tara Goss, Colette Greco, Sue Hadsell, Barbara Karanja, Rod MacDonald, Jane McIninch, Joseph Porte, Caitlin Rivet and Mark Vogel. In March, the team made their final recommendations to Session. On May 19th Session presented the five top priority ideas to the congregation during Worship. Please read about these ideas below and learn how you can get involved.

    Full time use of our facility:
    BPC is currently in conversation with the Burlington Public School system. They are interested in using the facility to expand their employee daycare program for 2-5 year olds. If conversations with BPS fall through, other preschool programs could be identified.

    Mission opportunities:
    • Establish a “Friday Nights Live at BPC” program with weekly programs including music programs, game nights, craft nights, movie nights, and other activities. This would serve to build relationships within the congregation as well as serving the community.

    • Needed: We seek individuals interested in any of these topics to get involved with planning; please speak with Tara Goss.

    • We are currently partnering with Farmer Dave with a well-established CSA program that runs 9 months of the year. During the main season, we offer a weekly newsletter that includes a recipe, a devotional, and notes about BPC programs. To expand our ministry through this program we will participate closely with Boston Faith & Justice Network (BFJN) in the Young Adult Volunteer (YAV) program organized by Boston Presbytery. A YAV will work part time to expand our CSA offerings, to write a handbook to help other organizations build a similar ministry and to offer food related youth programs. Furthermore, jointly with BFJN, we would offer their “Lazarus of the Gate” economic stewardship curriculum as well as some food preservation workshops at BPC. We will serve as the home congregation for the YAV during the program.

    • Needed: We seek individuals to participate in a committee to oversee the YAV’s progress; this would involve quarterly meetings for one year. Also, we seek individuals who are willing to reach out to the YAV and invite them in for holiday meals and other events. Please speak with Jane McIninch or Millie Wiegand if you would like to get involved.

    • Join a local housing project to either build new houses (like Habitat for Humanity) or renovate existing homes. We would plan one-day work opportunities a couple of times a year. This would be a hands-on ministry project for BPC with great opportunity for building relationships both with folks in this area for whom we are doing the work and with the folks we are working along side, to enrich us all. Please watch for more information and contact Tom Hennings, Ken Dewar or Joseph Porte with questions.

    • We currently have a group of individuals that have already planned two great retreats. We recommend continuing with annual or biannual retreats.either here or off-site.

    • Needed: We seek individuals interested in planning and coordinating events. Please speak with Mark Vogel.

    Saturday, June 1st 8:00 am

    The Trustees are sponsoring our annual spring clean-up on Saturday, June 1, starting at 8 a.m. (feel free to arrive a little later). Please come on out, enjoy the fresh air, and help us put everything outside in shape for summer. Exciting events include leaf raking, gutter cleaning, sweeping, mowing and trimming. Please bring your own lawn tools, and don’t forget your gloves. Electric blowers and very long extension cords are especially helpful. We can put everyone to work. Bring the family and ENJOY!!!

    Welcome Back, Farmer Dave

    Summer shares will be starting June 10!! Don’t miss out on the tasty fresh vegetables provided by Farmer Dave. Sign up for summer shares now and enjoy fresh vegetables and fruit all summer! For information, see brochures on church table.

    Friday Night at the Movies
    June 14, at 7:30

    Feature for this month: a classic tale about pool. A blue-eyed star’s unforgettable role as the chain-gang convict who just won’t conform. Now what we have here is…failure to communicate. Sure, maybe you’ve seen it before – but have you ever seen it as a parable portrait of Jesus as rebel hero against oppression? Take a fresh look. No charge; popcorn; bring a friend!

    Table Gathering at Church of the Covenant
    To support the Young Adult Volunteer Program

    Join in for a seasonal cooking lesson and three course meal on June 9th, August 11th, and October 13th. Class size is limited to 25 so email bbjyavprogram@gmail.com to reserve your spot and ask for a registration form. Cost is $50 per individual and $80 per couple. See the flyer on the bulletin board for more information.

    Christian Education

    On June 9, we will be honoring our teachers and celebrating the end of our regular church school program.
    Following worship there will be a cook out. Hot dogs and hamburgers and rolls will be provided but we are asking that others provide some side dishes such as potato salad, pasta salad, chips etc.

    During the summer there will be an activity time during worship for those children from pre- school to second grade.

    Library News
    Messy Spirituality by Mike Yaconelli

    Many Christians believe the “spiritual life” can only be lived by someone who is praying all the time, who never gets angry, is always blissfully at peace, and who seems to have an inside track to God.

    This book is for the rest of us.

    Enjoy a heartwarming and often humorous look at the crazy idea that common, ordinary, screwed-up people can be godly!

    Also new: More Crochet Prayer Shawl Patterns

    Yard Sale June 22, 9am-3pm

    Sally and I are the contact people for the yard sale this year. Please put aside items that you want to donate to the sale. Make sure items are clean and in good repair. Please let us know if items need small/easy repairs. You will be able to bring items to the church June 18, 19, 20 and 21, beginning at 9:30am. There will be some evening hours yet to be determined. If you have a key you could bring things on the 17th, the office is usually closed on Mondays. Items should not be brought to the church the day of the sale.

    We have enclosed “Yard Sale Donation Suggestions”. Sally and Judy

    Yard Sale Donation Suggestions

    Appliances: Radios, mixers, bath scales, CD players, (must be in good working order). No TVs, no computers or computer components.

    Arts & Crafts: Pictures, supplies and/or creations.

    Baby Furnishings: High chairs, play pens, potties, porta-cribs, safety gates, back packs, baby monitors.
    No child safety seats.

    Books: Children’s books are good sellers…

    Camping Equipment: Tents, stoves, lanterns, sleeping bags, back packs.

    Clocks & Watches: In working order or only needing a battery.

    Household Items: Lamps, rugs, chairs, kitchenware, wall hangings, curtains, dishes, pots and pans, crystal, etc.

    NOTE: Do not bring large items to the church until a few days before the sale. Any large items that do not sell must be picked up by the donor after the sale.

    Jewelry: Earrings, bracelets, cufflinks, necklaces, tiaras. Please separate items into plastic baggies..

    Musical Instruments: From Kazoos to Trombones.

    Pet Supplies: Toys, beds, crates, leashes, collars.

    Plants: All sizes, fresh (indoor or outdoor) or silk.

    Records, CDs, In good condition.

    Sports Equipment: (Small Items only), tennis rackets, basketballs, footballs, baseball gloves, roller blades. No
    weight benches or barbells. No skis, poles or boots. No hockey equipment.

    Tools: Hand and power, garden, mechanic, tool boxes.

    Toys: Fisher-Price and Playskool items, dolls, balls, board games, puzzles, outdoor play equipment, sleds, video games.

    Vehicles: Bikes, trikes, big wheels, wagons.

    Clothing Is Not A Big Seller And Will Not Be Accepted Please Be Sure All Items Are Clean!!

    September 2012 Crossroads

    Welcome our newest members!
    Josh and Stephanie who have been worshiping with us for some time have been enthusiastically received into membership by the Session. They are the parents of Gillian (age 5) and William, who was just born on June 16.

    Some of the kids enjoy one of our summer fellowship events
    The kids enjoy one of our summer fellowship events

    Still a champion to us!
    Amina Meho should be as of this writing in London, swimming with the Lebanese Olympic Team – that is, if life were fair. Despite her qualifying times and multiple-record-setting articipation with the Lebanese Swim Club (she has dual citizenship) – because of Lebanese politics much less qualified swimmers were chosen to go. Amina is taking it well (her mother, Lynda, whom we remember fondly, would be proud). Her father, Mo, who participated with the Lebanese Swim Team in the `72 Olympics is having a tougher time – understandably!

    Amina writes from UMass, Amherst:

    Yes it is tough not being in London but I am also happy that I’ve been able to go on a short break from swimming and been able to really enjoy this summer by visiting friends, going to the beach, I just got a job at one of the campus
    dining halls and I’ve been teaching some private swim lessons on the side a couple times a week. It’s been a great summer regardless of the unfortunate news!! I’m nervous but excited for my last year at Umass. Please tell the congregation I say hello and I hope to come home and visit soon!

    A big congratulations…
    Brad Morrison has won the System Dynamics Society’s Jay Wright Forrester Award, together with co-authors Jenny Rudolph and John Carroll. The paper they wrote was selected for the best contribution to the field during the past 5 years. It develops and tests a model of sensemaking (or things that go into decision-making) and action. It was based on a
    clinical experiment which placed anesthesiology residents in simulated crisis situations in the OR.

    The Morrison family was recently in Switzerland where Brad received the award and delivered a presentation.


    Chancel Choir will resume practice from 7:30 to 9 pm on Thursday, September 6, 2012, and sing in church on Sunday, September 9, 2012 (with practice at 10 am). Musically inclined people OF ALL AGES are encouraged to consider joining us. The ability to read music IS NOT REQUIRED. The choir usually sings for the Offertory on Communion Sundays, and
    the Anthem before the Word for Children on the other Sundays. This allows older youth and their teachers to participate. Other Sunday School teachers and younger children can also participate, as long as it is known when they will be out. Please contact Nancy Timmerman for further information, or talk to any choir member. We hope you can join us.

    The 48th Annual Choir Festival will be on Sunday, October 21, 2012 at 4 pm at Gordon Memorial Chapel in Wenham. Choir members and other interested parties should let Nancy Timmerman know as soon as possible so that music can be ordered. The Woburn practice is Monday night, October 15, with other rehearsals on Saturday, October 13 in W. Acton and Sunday night, October 14 in Bedford. Practice on the 21st is at 1:30 pm. Even if you don’t want to sing with the choir, give some consideration to joining in this ecumenical event. It is a wonderful experience.

    Celebrating 175 years of Presbyterian World Mission, 1837-2012

    In the Summer 2012 issue of Mission Crossroads, Presbyterian World Mission Director Hunter Farrell writes about the
    175th Anniversary of international mission by the General Assembly of PC(USA). Mission programs were being done by
    individual churches and groups prior to that date.

    Today, almost 200 mission workers are serving in approximately 50 countries. Over the years, Presbyterian missionaries have started churches, built hospitals and begun schools. Many of these programs have grown into self-sustaining institutions led by local Christians. The longstanding bonds forged throughout the years make mission partnerships possible.

    The PC(USA) mission program can help to provide the resources and personnel needed and provide resources for new programs.

    Presbyterian World Mission chiefly does three things: sends skilled mission personnel, empowers the global church
    and equips PC(USA) for mission. Our individual gifts and contributions to special offerings help Presbyterian World
    Mission continue these programs. For more information, visit http://www.pcusa.org/missionconnections.

    Clerk’s Corner

    Greetings from Session! As summer fades into fall, we are turning our attention away from the slow pace of summer back to another exciting fall for the BPC. Worship returns to 10:30am on September 9, and that means that Sunday School
    will be starting up again – for both our children and adults! If you’ve ever been curious about our adult class or interested in teaching the younger ones, feel free to drop by for class or see interim CE chair Cathy.

    We are all very excited about the retreat planned for September 29, and we hope to see many of you in attendance. This was and idea that Session has been working on most of this year, and we are very happy to see the enthusiasm
    from the rest of the congregation.

    Nominating committee will be convening soon to nominate folks for our 2013 boards. Be on the lookout for those nomination forms, and let us know your ideas!

    It’s sure to be an exciting fall here at BPC, and we wish everyone all the best as our programs take off on a running start.

    Susan L. Kemen
    Clerk of Session

    Peacemaking Offering

    The Peacemaking Offering will be received on World Communion Sunday, October 7.

    Since 1983, more than 4,500 Presbyterian Church(USA) congregations have participated in the Peacemaking Offering. In 2011, the offering raised $1,994,792. The local church keeps 25% of the offering. The Burlington congregation has used this money to help fund scholar-ships for local high school seniors who have exhibited peacemaking skills during their
    high school years. An additional 25% is used by the presbyteries and synods to support their peacemaking ministries.

    The 50% is allocated to the General Assembly Mission Council. In 2011, the offering was used as follows:

  • Communities of Mission Practice – foster peacemaking practices and promote gun control.
  • Health of Congregations – Deepen peacemaking commitments and develop and launch the new “Season of Peace.” (2012)
  • Leadership Development – Train peacemaking leaders.
  • Global Perspective – Offer travel study seminars and bring international peacemakers to the PC(USA).
  • College and Young Adults – Provide internships and scholarships for young people. Support young adult and college peacemakers. Cultivate a new generation of peacemakers. Launch antibullying efforts in 2012.
  • February 2012 Crossroads

    News of our Church Family
    Remembering two special men…

    The new year opened with a season of sorrow for two families and our church community. But we are grateful to God for the life among us of Nick Horeanopoulos and Jay David, who were welcomed into God’s peace on New Year’s Eve, and New Year’s Day, respectively.

    We hold their wives, Lee and Sheila, and the rest of their families in our prayers.

    Both men lived and served with faith and grace, and will be missed greatly by the BPC family.

    Called to Serve

    As we enter a new year, there are still opportunities for service on all our boards! Please contact the Nominating Committee (Brenda Flynn) if interested, or with your suggestions.

    Thank you from Jena Horeanopoulos Day

    Dear Rod & friends in Christ,

    My family is so very grateful to each and everyone of you for your kindness and support after the death of my father. Your presence brought great comfort to us. The memorial service was the perfect opportunity to witness to unsaved family members. We were overwhelmed by the extent of your caring exhibited by the luncheon you prepared for after the service.

    Thank you does not begin to express how appreciate we are to all of you. May God richly bless each of you as you continue to show his love to those around you. Thank you, thank you. God Bless you.

    Jena Day

    Deacons Corner

    We would like to thank the deacons who are leaving the board this year: Trish Briggs, Linda McCusker and Dayse Doliver, our coordinator. Thanks for all your hard work!

    We would also like to thank everyone who helped with the memorial service for Nick Horeanopoulos, especially Sally Morrison.

    Stewardship and Mission

    Thanks to everyone who participated in the Christmas Joy Offering. The offering totaled $1,853.74. This money will be used to help active and retired church workers in times of crisis and enable young men and women to receive a good education at some of the schools and colleges supported by PC(USA).

    Ash Wednesday Service
    February 22, 7:30 p.m.

    Quiet reflection, music and prayer will be the focus of this service to assist our meaningful entry into the season of Lent. The Worship Committee is planning a Taize style service this year, which will provide a time of peaceful renewal in the midst of our challenging days.

    Join the church family, and help us welcome others, to this traditional service marking the start of Lent. There will be ashes and an opportunity for placing them on our foreheads as the sign of our humility and dependence upon God’s grace (use of ashes will be voluntary).

    This can be an important start, in the right spirit, to the journey of Lent toward Holy Week. Please plan to make it part of your life.

    One Great Hour of Sharing

    The Presbyterian Church (USA) is one of eight denominations supporting this offering. Each denomination decides how the money will be used. In PC(USA), the offering is divided among three programs. Self-Development of People and Presbyterian Disaster Assistance each receive 32% and the Presbyterian Hunger Program receives 36%. The additional 4% is used for the Hunger Program’s work on homelessness and affordable housing.

    During Lent, the children will receive the usual fish banks for their part of the offering and there will be envelopes in the pews. A Sharing Calendar will be available for those interested in a daily reminder of what our gifts can accomplish. For more information on this program, check http://www.pcusa.org/oghs. Our offering will be received on Palm Sunday, April 1.

    Beth Denier

    Save the Date(s)!

    The 50th Anniversary Planning Team announces the following events to celebrate BPC’s 50th Anniversary:

  • Saturday, April 28, 2012 at 7:30 p.m.

    Sixties Theme Party for all adults

  • Saturday, May 19, 2012 at 6:30 p.m.

    International Potluck Dinner & food
    raffle-all ages

  • Sunday, May 20, 2012 at 10:30 a.m.

    Worship Celebration & Anniversary

    Put them on your calendar and plan to come.

    Stay tuned for exciting details of all events to come.

    John Gloucester Memorial Presbyterian Church Scholarship

    College students from Presbyterian churches may be eligible for this scholarship established in 2000 at the time of the closing of Gloucester Memorial Presbyterian Church in Roxbury.

    Contact Rev. MacDonald for more info.

    Hosting Coffee Hour

    Thanks to all of you who hosted in 2011. Members and visitors alike look forward to this time of fellowship and refreshment following worship each Sunday.

    Nurturing Nest Preschool
    Registration Event

    The Nurturing Nest Preschool has classes in full swing from September through May. We have started enrollment for the 2012-2013 school year. The following programs will be offered:

    3-day Program (4 year olds)  9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

    Monday, Wednesday, Friday

    (Tuition $2,650.00 per year)

    2-day Program (3 year olds)  9:00 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.

    Tuesday, Thursday

    (Tuition $1,550.00 per year)

    There is a non-refundable registration fee of $85.00

    Our Open House will be held on February 13, 2012 from 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. and is a chance for families to experience the school with their children.

    If you know someone who is looking for a quality, yet low-cost preschool experience for their
    3 or 4 year olds, we would appreciate your spreading the word! There are several spots open for both programs. Interested families should call registrar Linda Benson at 781-272-0081, extension 2 for more details. Church members should invite anyone who might be interested and also spread the word (post a flyer) in their local grocery store, library, or other public place.

    Occasionally we will share a few tidbits in Crossroads about this important community service which our church oversees. For now, as you leave Fellowship Hall on Sundays or after week night meetings, remember that there will be a group of preschoolers there the next morning. Make sure that you dispose of your trash, lower the tables, raise the shades, pick up all personal possessions and leave the room ready for action.

    And spread the word about registration. We appreciate your help.

    Submitted by the Nurturing Nest Board

  • November Crossroads

    Stewardship and Mission

    Thanks to everyone who made a donation to the Peacemaking Offering. The offering totaled $641.00, almost double last year’s offering.

    We are now in the last quarter of 2011 and the third quarterly statements were sent recently. Please try to keep up with your pledges, if possible, so we can finish 2011 in good financial condition. If there is a problem, please contact Jim Brunner.

    The 2012 Stewardship Campaign will begin on November 6 and Pledge Sunday will be on November 20. As usual, we will also collect non-perishable food items for the Burlington Food Pantry’s Thanksgiving baskets on that day. Check the Deacon’s column for a list of the food requested.

    Deacons Corner
    2011 Thanksgiving Food Baskets

    The Burlington Pantry will be distributing Thanksgiving Food Baskets again this year. They will be giving food to over 150 families, including elderly shut-ins and veterans. The collection date will be Sunday, November 20th. We have been asked to contribute the following:

  • Stuffing (bags or boxes)
  • Cranberry Sauce
  • Gravy (preferably in cans, rather than glass jars)
  • Chicken Broth
  • Canned Corn
  • Cornbread Mix
  • Mayonnaise
  • We are not collecting apple juice
    concentrate this year

    Please check the expiration dates!!!

    Fresh vegetables will be purchased, so if anyone would prefer to contribute money instead of food, donations would be welcome. Checks should be made payable to People Helping People.

    We will also need help after the service with sorting the food and taking it to the Congregational church.

    Interfaith Thanksgiving Service
    Monday, November 21, 7:00 p.m.

    Join with neighbors of different faiths in common expression of thanksgiving at the annual Burlington Interfaith Thanksgiving Service Monday, November 21, 2011, 7:00 p.m. at the United Church of Christ, Congregational (Bedford and Lexington Streets). Leaders and worshipers will represent Christian, Jewish, Muslim, and Hindu traditions. The preacher will be Rev. Tricia de Beer, who is married to the pastor of St. Mark’s Church. As in past years, the offering will be for the Burlington Covenant for Basic Needs (emergency fund of People Helping People, administered by the Burlington Community Life Center). This a wonderful opportunity to be joined with others in being grateful for the community we have, and the gifts of our Creator, even in these troubled times.

    Cabanlutan Philippine Project
    An update from Priscilla Lasmarias Kelso

    One of the recipients of the Christmas offering from the Burlington Presbyterian Church last year was the Cabanlutan health and education project that the church has been supporting for several years. The amount of over $300 was sent to the on-going outreach to rural Filipinos in one of the central islands in the Philippines.

    The good news is that Priscilla Kelso, the project’s advocate, spent 6 months in the Philippines recently with her husband, Rev. Bart Kelso, as volunteer professors at a Presbyterian university, an hour away from the Cabanlutan project. So the Kelsos were able to make several visits to the village where subsistence farmers and their families live.

    Here are some updates on what has been happening to this community of people that Bart and Priscilla know personally and have visited several times in their trips to Asia:

    1. The health center (a small building used as a place for volunteer health services) continues to be a place where people gather weekly for health check-ups by doctors and nurses from the city 7 kilometers away. Pre-natal exams and guidelines on preventing dengue fever are a current priority.

    2. A new Christian community is emerging with the building of a small church in a piece of land donated by Priscilla’s family. This has been particularly encouraging, as a thriving youth outreach has drawn many young people into this faith community of rural families.

    3. The village school has produced graduates who, with some financial assistance, are able to attend a community college in the nearby city. Several of these students are girls whom Priscilla has personally sponsored to give them a future beyond working in the sugar cane fields. This education outreach is an on-going focus of the Cabanlutan project.

    All in all, Burlington Presbyterian Church has been a faithful participant in building up this small model of hope for the poor in the Philippines. The village was spared from the destruction caused by recent typhoons and is grateful for this ongoing partnership from half a world away.