March 2013 Crossroads

Holy Week at the Presbyterian Church
Please come, share in these times which recall the heart of our faith. Invite your friends!

Passion/Palm Sunday, March 24
Remembering Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem to confront the power of sin and death.
10:30 a.m. Worship

In keeping with tradition, there will be a palm procession, special music,
and the dedication of our One Great Hour of Sharing offering.

Maundy Thursday, March 28
Remembering the Last Supper
“Maundy Thursday” gets its name from Jesus’ “new commandment”
(mandatum in Latin) to love one another as He has loved us.

6:30 p.m.
Family teaching supper about communion 
Gathering for all families with conversation about the sacrament.
Then they may remain for:

7:30 p.m.
A brief service with celebration of the Lord’s Supper—
on the night we remember Jesus’ last meal with his disciples.
Communion is served around the communion table.

Good Friday, March 29
The Day of Jesus’ Crucifixion
It is “good” Friday because, despite appearances, it is God’s Friday.

7:30 – 8:30 p.m.
A vigil of prayer, readings, and extinguishing of candles in the darkened sanctuary, as we reflect on the meaning of Jesus’ crucifixion, of our lives, and our world.

Easter Sunday, March 3
The Day of Resurrection

9:00 a.m.
With cries of “He is risen!” we greet one another at our annual Easter Breakfast.
Coordinated by Mark and Cheryl Wells.

10:30 a.m. ALLELUIA!
Christ is risen! He is risen indeed!

Worship will celebrate the heart of the Good News, with jubilant music. This is the love that overcomes death!

No Sunday School – worship will be for the whole family. There will be child care for infants and toddlers only.


Deacons Corner

The new Board of Deacons met for the first time on Feb 6th. The new board has been active already with providing meals to a few of our ailing church members and activation of the prayer chain.

The Dwelling Place continues to serve those in need on the third Wednesday of each month. A special “thank you” to those who volunteer, especially Sally Morrison and Judy Brunner for preparing the food and Beth and Anne Denier for providing luscious desserts. We also thank all the other volunteers for making salads and serving the food to our guests. They truly appreciate our being there. In January, there were 11 guests served. In February, there were 19 served.

Welcome Back, Farmer Dave

Soon, Winter will be gone. A sure sign of this event is the return of Farmer Dave’s CSA. This year, we will be participating in the Spring share. Deliveries begin on March 18. Hurry and sign up so you don’t miss out on the freshest veggies and fruits of the season!!!!

A Teaching Supper about Communion:
Maundy Thursday, March 28, 6:30

The Christian Education Committee and Rod will again offer this opportunity for families with young children. There will be pizza and salad, and learning activities about the meaning and practice of the Lord’s Supper in our church. This annual event is planned primarily with elementary-age children in mind, but is open to families with children of all ages. All who come are welcome (but not obligated) to stay for the church’s Maundy Thursday communion service – which is typically briefer than most services, and is one of the times when we gather around the communion table for the sacrament.

The Presbyterian Church (USA) Book of Order states “Baptized children who are being nurtured and instructed in the significance of the invitation to the Table and the meaning of their response are invited to receive the Lord’s Supper, recognizing that their understanding of participation will vary according to their maturity.”

There will be a sign-up during coffee hour for interested families or you may call or email the church.

Crafter’s Night, March 15
Our “Warm Up America” crafter’s night was a big success! We will be meeting again Friday, March 15 at 7:00. Bring a square to finish or help us put them together. Don’t know how to make one? Come and learn! See the brochure on the church table.

Friday Night at the Movies
March 8, at 7:30
Our Feature Presentation this month is “Get Low” starring Robert Duvall, Bill Murray and Sissy Spacek.

One Great Hour of Sharing 2013

Over the years, the resources provided though the One Great Hour of Sharing offering, brought relief and joy to all corners of the world including here in the United States. Your generous gifts proved that our Burlington congregation, as well as other Presbyterian churches and many other denominations, care for people in their time of need. While each denomination allocates its gifts differently, all use their funds for ministries of disaster relief, refugee assistance, and development aid. In recent years Presbyterians have given about $8 million annually.

But need is increasing. Both within the United States and throughout the world, the gap between those who have enough and those who don’t continues to widen. Increased costs of living mean that this year’s dollar simply can’t do as much work as last year’s. The pinch many Americans feel is amplified many times over for those around the world who already spend most of their earnings on food.

Last year our congregation gave $1,610 to OGHS. As a challenge for this year, our goal is $2,000.
That would be equivalent to 40 tanks of gas at $50/fillup or 80 trips to a fast food restaurant at $25 for the family (if you’ve got coupons!). As you consider your offering this year, think of how every $5 or $10 can help feed or clothe or provide medication for someone in need.

The theme for this year’s OGHS offering is that SHARING BRINGS JOY. The guiding passage comes from 2 Corinthians 9:6-15. In Paul’s letter, he reminds the early church of the importance of being generous and helping to supply the needs of others. He encouraged them in giving their gifts to those who were not even Christians and whom they did not even know. He ended his letter by saying that their giving would be seen as expressions of thanks to God.

The blessings of giving have not changed. When we recognize the God-given worth of each person around the globe, without regard to race, religion, or nationality, we know we have God’s blessing and approval. The monies distributed to the Presbyterian Hunger Project, Disaster Assistance, and self development of people, bring joy to the recipients, to us, and to God. As a result of your gifts and the gifts of other congregation, OGHS will continue to be a reminder that through the simple act of sharing, we are blessed and will experience God’s abundance in surprising ways.

Envelopes will be in the pews mid-March and the official offering will be collected on Palm Sunday. You can send in a gift at any time, however, marked OGHS. Thank you for your longtime support of this gift to others, as together we find that Sharing Brings Joy.

Millie Wiegand

What does it mean to be Presbyterian today?

More and more books related to our Presbyterian faith are available every day for e-readers. You do not need to own a Kindle or Nook to read them – there are easy ways to read them on your PC or phone. (Search either amazon.com or barnesandnoble.com for “free ereader application”.)

You can also download free copies of the Book of Order and the Book of Confessions from pcusa.org.

This is a partial list from Amazon to get you started. (The list is sorted by popularity in the Kindle store.) Check out your favorite eBook store and see what is there!

Presbyterian Questions, Presbyterian Answers: Exploring Christian Faith by Donald K. McKim (Jan 31, 2004)

(also available in church library)

On Being Presbyterian: Our Beliefs, Practices, And Stories by Sean Michael Lucas

Presbyterian Beliefs: A Brief Introduction by Donald K. McKim (May 5, 2003)

(also available in church library)

To Be a Presbyterian by Louis B. Weeks (Jan 25, 2010)

How to Survive Being a Presbyterian!: A Merry Manual Celebrating the Funny Foibles of the Frozen Chosen by Bob Reed (Jan 16, 2001) .

(also available in church library)

A Sustainable Presbyterian Future: What’s Working and Why by Louis B. Weeks (Jun 21, 2012)

Presbyterians Being Reformed: Reflections on What the Church Needs Today by Robert H.Bullock Jr. and Clifton Kirkpatrick (Mar 20, 2006

Being Presbyterian in the Bible Belt: A Theological Survival Guide for Youth, Parents, & Other Confused Presbyterians… by Ted V. Foote Jr. and P. Alex Thornburg (May 1, 2000)

February 2013 Crossroads

Winter Light: Discerning Our Path
February 2, 2013
12:30 – 4:00

Did you know there is an ancient Christian tradition associated with February 2 (aka Groundhog Day)? As the midpoint between the winter solstice and the spring equinox, Candlemas is a day to thank God for light. It is also the traditional day to bless the candles that will be used over the coming year.

This is an opportunity to pause and ponder about the light and shadow in our own lives. Where do we need light? What parts of our lives are in between light and dark?

We won’t just think about light – we will make candles, worship, talk, and reflect together.

Sign in will begin at 12:30 with coffee and goodies. There is no cost. Feel to bring friends.

Please come and light up your own life!

Ash Wednesday Service
February 13, 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 service 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

Catastrophic storms and wildfires throughout the United States. War and political uprising in the Middle East. Malnutrition and starvation. Extreme poverty and urban squalor. Stories of disaster, hunger, poverty, and other tragedies filled our newspapers and television screens in 2012. With such stories, it is easy to become disheartened and experience compassion fatigue. In the midst of these times, the prophet Isaiah reminds us that we are called to be “the repairer of the breach, the restorer of streets to live in” (Isa. 58:12). We are called to make God’s community livable for all.

Through abundant and generous gifts to One Great Hour of Sharing (OGHS) Presbyterians have for many years faithfully heeded God’s call to serve people seeking to reclaim and restore their lives.

Your gift to this offering allows Presbyterian Disaster Assistance to restore communities around the world affected by disaster including those now recovering from Hurricane Sandy. It helps the Presbyterian Hunger Program work with Presbyterians and other partners to alleviate hunger and eliminate its causes in this country and internationally and makes it possible for Self-Development of People to affirm the dignity of all by assisting in the empowerment of economically poor, oppressed, and disadvantaged people.

“Sharing Brings Joy. To Others, to God, and to Us.”

The programs supported by OGHS depend on continued and increased support from congregations like yours. As a result of your gifts and the gifts of other congregations across the church, OGHS will continue to be a reminder that through the simple act of sharing, we are blessed and experience God’s abundance in surprising ways. Thank you for your longtime support of this offering, as together we are Sharing Resources . . . Changing Lives.
Sara Pottschmidt Lisherness
Director
Compassion, Peace, and Justice

Our offering will be received on Palm Sunday, March 24. Fishboxes will be available for the children.

Beth Denier

Worship
(contributed by Joan Ross)

The purpose of worship is not to hear a sermon, to sing a hymn or two. It is something much larger: to come in contact with the world as it is and as we want it to be. Both and at the same time. That’s why it looks so silly to an outsider who objects to the seemingly easy transition, not knowing that it is not easy at all. It is an ongoing process Sunday after Sunday after Sunday. It is not a habit; it is a discipline and discipleship. In one short hour to moan and mourn and then forget oneself and join with joy the others in a mock-up banquet reminding us of bread/hunger, wine/blood, life/death, and resurrection/hope that defies despair. You don’t do that in an hour; the hour only becomes a manifestation of what it takes a lifetime to realize.
The hour spent in church is irreplaceable. When I now leave for church on Sunday morning and return an hour and a half later, I can hardly believe such a short time has elapsed. What could I have done in that length of time? Read a little, think somewhat, listen to music, finish a review, prepare a meal, yes. But compared to the cosmic importance and personal engagement that takes place in church – no, it cannot be compared. Church time is eternal. (Brita Stendahl)

JAZZ & CHOCOLATE
Saturday, February 9th, 7-9 PM

The UCC Church is hosting a special event for music lovers and chocolate lovers alike. Noted professional jazz singer, Lydia Harrell, will be performing while we enjoy a variety of decadent chocolate desserts.

UCC Church
6 Lexington Street,
Burlington, MA

Tickets: $15.00

For more information:
Julie Lewis: 617-281-8670 jalewis@gmail.com

5p Syndrome

Each year in the United States, approximately 50 to 60 children are born with 5p- Syndrome (five p minus), also known as Cat Cry Syndrome or Cri du Chat Syndrome. 5p- Syndrome is characterized at birth by a high pitched cry, low birth weight; slow physical development and potential medical complications. “5p-” is a term used by geneticists to describe a portion of chromosome number five that is missing in these individuals. Children born with this rare genetic defect require ongoing support from a team of parents, therapists, and medical and educational professionals to help the child achieve his or her maximum potential.

My granddaughter, Lydia, has this rare syndrome. Fortunately, she has a strong set of parents (my daughter Laurel and son-in-law Greg) and supportive siblings who help her cope with her needs. There is also a national organization which holds yearly meetings throughout the United States to help families connect and learn more about their children. This summer the annual conference will be held in New York and my daughter is on the planning committee.

Here’s where BPC can help. I am asking for sponsors for the Fun Camp portion of the program for the 5P youngsters and young adults ages 12 and up. (Lydia is 14). In the past, this group has often been gathered in front of tv’s or movies during the day while the parents are attending the lectures and programs. This year, Laurel is planning a more active program, using leaders from the physical therapy classes which she teaches at Columbia University. The Fun Camp will include a music game show, yoga, memory book making, a photo booth, dance party, rhythm games, and other activities. Many supplies and donations are needed.
Examples of supplies needed include :

  • Large posters for photo backdrops – preferably of city, dance, or beach scenes.
  • Costume supplies: wedding dresses, top hats, cummerbunds, boas, big sunglasses, beach hats & towels, cowboy hats, prince and princess crowns, magician’s cape, doctor’s white coat, any NY sports team clothing, etc.
  • Yoga mats, pre-made yoga pose pictures, pre-made photo cards, memory book decorations
  • The actual memory books will be pre-made with the conference logo on the front, but donations to purchase them and to purchase film are needed.

    See me if you are interested in contributing any of these items or with a check made out to 5P- Society to help defray expenses. This outreach goes a bit beyond our Burlington community, but it would be very meaningful to me and my family. And BPC will be noted as one of the sponsors in the program notes. I need to gather all donations by March 17th in order to take them to my daughter in time for her to determine what else will be needed. You can also find out more information about the 5p- Society and the conference on their website: http://www.fivepminus.org.

    Thanks in advance – Millie Wiegand

    April 2012 Crossroads

    Holy Week at the Presbyterian Church
    Please come, share in these times which recall the heart of our faith. Invite your friends!

    Passion/Palm Sunday, April 1
    Remembering Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem to confront the power of sin and death.
    10:30 a.m. Worship

    In keeping with tradition, there will be a palm procession, special music, and the dedication of our One Great Hour of Sharing offering.

    Maundy Thursday, April 5
    Remembering the Last Supper

    “Maundy Thursday” gets its name from Jesus’ “new commandment”
    (mandatum in Latin) to love one another as He has loved us.

    6:30 p.m.
    Family teaching supper about communion
    Gathering for all families with conversation about the sacrament.
    Then they may remain for:

    7:30 p.m.
    A brief service with celebration of the Lord’s Supper — on the night we remember Jesus’ last meal with his disciples.
    Communion is served around the communion table.

    Good Friday, April 6
    The Day of Jesus’ Crucifixion

    It is “good” Friday because, despite appearances, it is God’s Friday.

    7:30 – 8:30 p.m.
    A vigil of prayer, readings, and extinguishing of candles in the darkened sanctuary, as we reflect on the meaning of Jesus’ crucifixion, of our lives, and our world.

    Easter Sunday, April 8
    The Day of Resurrection

    9:00 a.m.
    With cries of “He is risen!” we greet one another at our annual Easter Breakfast.
    Coordinated by Mark and Cheryl Wells.

    10:30 a.m. ALLELUIA!
    Worship will celebrate the heart of the Good News, with jubilant music.
    This is the love that overcomes death!

    No Sunday School – worship will be for the whole family. There will be child care for infants and toddlers only.

    News of our Church Family
    Losses in church families…

    Our thoughts and prayers are with Jean Graham and family, following the death of her mother, Hazel Petrie, at the age of 96 on February 19; with Millie Wiegand and family – Millie’s mother, Connie Holmes, entered God’s peace on February 22; and with Bobbi and Ron Steeves and family, following the passing of Bobbi’s sister, Pat, on March 11, after her struggle with cancer.

    Thanks be to God, for the love that is stronger than death.

    Thanks…

    To all those teachers, students, and other volunteers who helped to make our recent Walk Through Holy Week a memorable experience.

    Hunger Walk’s coming…

    Sunday, May 6 is the date! Let team captain Linda Roscoe know that you are interested in walking for Project Bread this year.

    Deacons Corner

    Thanks to everyone who ordered Easter flowers this year. The money we collected was sent to Presbyterian Disaster Assistance and the Mission of Deeds.

    The Food Pantry is requesting peanut butter and jelly, any flavor but grape. They also need beef soups. As usual, the official collection date will be the first Sunday of the month, but you can bring them anytime and leave them in the red tub outside the church office.

    Clerk’s Corner
    A message from Session

    With a new year comes new changes. Rod and I have spoken about using Crossroads as a way to keep you, our congregation, informed of what Session has been up to and to take an opportunity to make announcements that might not show up elsewhere. Session has already been busy this year by establishing four goals: 1) Deepening our Faithful Relationships, 2) Engaging our Communities, 3) Ministering with Youth, and 4) Encouraging and Enabling Joyful Service. Our committee members may already be familiar with these goals, as they should be the focus of the activities taking place in and around our church.

    This year marks our 50th Anniversary, and to that end, a special committee was formed last fall to make this event truly spectacular. Keep an eye out for your invitation if you have not already received it. We kick off the week after Easter with a series of speakers, recalling what the church was like during a particular decade in our history, starting April 15th with one of our charter members! Also on the agenda is a rockin’ 60s party with a live DJ spinning all the great songs from the 1960s on Saturday, April 28th. In May, we’ll have our big weekend celebration with an international dinner, special worship service, and reception.

    The Response Team (part of our Safe Child program) for this year is almost in place and consists of Elder Brenda Flynn, Deacon Anne Denier, and Trustee Scott Davis. An alternate will be named soon.

    Interested in a spiritual retreat day? Stay tuned! Discussions have opened surrounding the idea of a retreat this fall.

    On behalf of Session, I’d like to express our deepest gratitude to those of you who work tirelessly on all of our committees, boards, and programs. Without you, our church would not be the thriving entity we have all grown to love.

    Respectfully submitted,
    Susan L. Kemen
    Clerk of Session

    One Great Hour of Sharing

    There will be OGH envelopes in the pews before Palm Sunday. We hope you will join us on that day to participate in the procession. If you have children in church school, please have them return their fish banks that day or as soon as possible. To help Treasurer, Jim Brunner, keep accurate records, make sure your child’s name on the bank is legible.

    One Great Hour of Sharing gifts help to fund Presbyterian Disaster Assistance, the Presbyterian Hunger Program and Self-Development of People.

    Beth Denier

    Are you read to Rock and Roll?

    Please join us Saturday, April 28, 2012, at 7:30 p.m. in Fellowship Hall for our Church’s first 50th anniversary function, a 1960’s dance. Music and entertainment will be provided by D.J., Dave Anthony (Fran’s son). There will also be screening of ’60’s TV shows such as Dragnet, The Dick Van Dyke Show, Star Trek and Andy Griffith for those who want to reminisce or experience the 60s. Light refreshments will be served. Sign up sheets will be in Fellowship Hall. If you have any questions/comments please contact Sue Hadsell at sehadsell@verizon.net.

    Mother’s Day Project

    Honor friends and family members with Mother’s Day cards in support of the Healthy Women Healthy Families Project. This project supports health education, disease prevention and care for women and children in Malawi, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Ethiopia and Republic of South Sudan. To obtain cards or more information, check with Beth Denier.

    Mission Giving

    Missionary barrels and hands-on projects, such as rolled and knitted bandages, are no longer required. Fortunately, this is partly due to better facilities in our overseas mission hospitals and other programs. Due to high transportation costs, the Presbyterian Church (USA) encourages members to give money for those overseas projects. Often needed items can be purchased from sources nearer the project which saves shipping costs. Churches wishing to participate in hands-on projects are encouraged to find something closer to home. This might include school bags or health kits which can be used locally or sent to Church World Service.

    The February 19, 2012 meditation in the devotional booklet, These Days, quoted a statistic from UNICEF to the effect that 22,000 children die each day from preventable causes. This includes access to safe water, nutritious food, and basic medical care. Not all of these children are from third world countries. Some live in our towns. How safe is the water supply in your town? Do your schools have a breakfast and/or lunch program for children from low income families? Is there a food bank? Are affordable medical facilities available? Find out and get involved.

    Beth Denier