Tower Notes

Centre Congregational Church
United Church of Christ

We Welcome Everyone: An “Open & Affirming” Church
Handicap Accessible

Phone: (781) 334-3050; Fax:  (781) 334-6463;   Email:
5 Summer Street, Lynnfield, Massachusetts  01940

The Rev. Dr. A. Rand Peabody, Interim Pastor -
Jill Couillard & Barbara Langill - Directors of Christian Education & Youth Ministry -
Douglas W. Hodgkins: Organist/Choir Director
Sally MacDonald, Director of Tower Day School
Susan Spear, Secretary

August 30, 2006

From Rand Peabody,

Interim-Interim Pastor

As I write this in later August, it hardly seems possible that my three-month “Interim-Interim” pastorate is already two-thirds over! Indeed, I have felt a rich spirit in this good church from the moment of my arrival back on the first Sunday in July. It’s been a most pleasant experience, indeed, for me to work with you.

And I must say that I’ve been pleased to see some good new things happening in what is typically the quieter summer period. Our Thursday Morning Scripture Seminars have been well attended and consistently stimulating. (By the way, let me stress that no prior knowledge of the material we are covering is expected, and that anyone able to come is highly encouraged to do so. You will be more than welcome!) Our current five-session series on “The Wisdom Literature of the Bible” will conclude with two Seminars on August 31 and September 7 that will focus on The Book of Proverbs. Proverbs is a wide-ranging compilation of wise sayings, all of them stemming from an indwelling faith in the guiding power of the Almighty. Our Wisdom series has actually spawned two separate sermons, one on the book of Ecclesiastes, and the other on Job. The latter sermon, on August 27th, was a shared effort by Seavey Bowdoin and myself, touching on thorny themes like undeserved human suffering, and the relationship of Satan to God. It wasn’t “Theology Light”!

Another significant development that is coming to a culmination at Centre Church currently is your major By-Laws revision. The final draft of the By-Laws document will be ready to be voted on at an Annual Meeting to be scheduled for shortly after your Pastor-Elect, The Rev. Dennis Bailey, arrives. You are presently in the exciting position of being able to re-invent the structural aspects of your life together. And in particular, I am impressed with the creation of a number of new “ministry teams” to oversee the diverse aspects of your church life and program. Nominations will shortly be made for a slate of people to staff not only the various Officer positions, Tower-Day-School Board, and the Diaconate, but also Ministry Teams in the areas of Membership, Education, Outreach, Stewardship, and Finance (which will be additionally responsible for Property, Investments, and Memorials.)

I am hopeful that, in a year of administrative and pastoral transition, people will approach the various tasks of mission and ministry here at Centre Church with new-found enthusiasm and commitment. And I can honestly say that, based on my sense of the spirit (and Holy Spirit) abroad in the church, I am certain that that will be the case.

Yours in faith,
Rand Peabody

IN THE CHAPEL - 9:00 a.m.

Sunday, September 3, 2006

I Corinthians 3:10-11

Sermon by the Rev. Dr. A. Rand Peabody

Tales of Builders”

All are invited for punch and fellowship

in the Fireside Room following the service.

The 10th at 10

Now that September is upon us, we are looking to be back in the Sanctuary starting on September 10. “The 10th at 10” will feature a re-gathering service of Holy Communion at which, if their parents so permit, the children of the church are invited to partake. The Service will also include the first Children’s Message of the new season, and following the Worship hour there will be Church School Registration in the Narthex.

Rand Peabody’s sermon-title that day will be “Cultivating Our Orchard”. He will be stressing that attaining and maintaining a quality of robust health in every aspect of a congregation’s life is both a practical AND a spiritual responsibility for us all.

Sunday, the 10th, will be a great time for the Centre Church community to come back together in good numbers and in a spirit of high expectation for all that the new season promises to offer.

Rotation Sensation News

On Sunday, September 10, we will celebrate Welcome Back Sunday. We will be collecting Church School registrations and will have the workshop rooms open for tours. Rotation Sensation classes will begin on Sept 17. The children’s first lesson will focus on Exodus and the story of Moses. There will be a meeting for all Exodus Workshop Leaders on Sunday Sept. 10 at 11:30 a.m. for a theological overview with Rev. Rand Peabody.

Attention: All Workshop Leaders and Shepherds for Rotation Sensation

On Tuesday, Sept. 12 at 6:00 p.m. there will be a dinner meeting to prepare for the 2006-2007 program year. It is very important for all leaders and shepherds to attend this meeting and to bring your calendars so that we can set up the scheduling for the year.

Save the Date!

On Saturday evening, October 21, please plan to join us for an All-Church Progressive Dinner. Details will follow!

Centre Congregational Church Golf Tournament

The 4th Annual Centre Church Golf Tournament will be held once again at the Thomson Country Club in North Reading.  The date will be Friday September 22nd at 1 PM.  We will follow a scramble/best ball format with a shotgun start.  This tournament is not only a lot of fun, but the net proceeds are designated to our Missions program.  The cost of $100 covers the greens and carts fees.  There will be gifts and prizes and after the tournament there is a cookout at the Johnson’s.

To register please send a check payable to Centre Congregational Church to Phil Johnson, Chris Parker or Rick Carey.  If you have any questions please contact Phil Johnson at or at 781-598-5678.

Youth Group News

There will be a meeting for the participants of the New York Mission Trip on Sunday, Sept. 10 at 6:00 p.m. We will go over the plans for the Shareholders’ Dinner and work on our presentation.

Both Youth Groups (Gr. 5-8 and Gr.9-12) begin on Sunday, Sept. 17 at 6:00 p.m.

Shareholders’ Dinner

On Sunday, Sept. 24 at 6:00 p.m., the NYC Mission Trip participants will be holding a dinner for all those who bought stock in our trip or participated in the Flamingo Flocking Fundraiser. The youth will give a presentation on the highlights of the trip.

Calling all Students!

Those who are in 2nd Grade through 8th Grade are invited to join us for the start of a new Youth Choir year. We will meet after church on Sundays from 11:30-12:00 starting on Sept. 10. The Youth Choir will sing in church approximately once a month. We’re looking forward to a great year! Bring your friends!

Doug Hodgkins and Pat Summerer

Missions Notes

Thank you to those who have continued to support Missions with donations to the Missions Pantry. (See Separate Article.)

In addition, this fall we are also asking for donations of school supplies for Haven from Hunger. Please drop off notebooks, pens and pencils, small dictionaries, markers, etc. in the marked bin. These will be greatly appreciated by students in the area who cannot afford to buy the supplies they need.

The Knitting Group will reconvene starting Tuesday, Sept. 12 from 7-8:30 p.m.
Knitters, experienced and new, are welcome. Beginners will learn to make squares to be donated to the Red Cross, and those who wish to move on to a new project will learn to make a sweater or afghan. Yarn is supplied.
The Missions Commission will meet Sunday September 17th following the Worship Service in order to plan for the up-coming year. New members are welcome, and ideas for projects are always considered. Please consider joining and make a difference.
Any questions? Please contact Chris Gehret at 334-6737 or any member of the Missions Comm. - Barbara Arsnow, Peggy Batchelder, Dave Bjorkman, Jim Marshall, Barbara Nickerson, Sandi Watson.

Thank you.

News From Around the Parish

Our hearty congratulations to Jack Turner who celebrates his 95th birthday on September 3.

We rejoice with Derek and Michelle Troy of Littleton, CO upon the birth of a son, Cameron Derek Troy on August 1. His proud big sisters are Aliciana, age 5 and Cassandra, age 4. Proud grandparents are Larry and Bradlee Troy. Proud great-grandparents are Dr. George and Dottie Robinson.

Our congratulations and best wishes to Linda Newhall and Jack Newton who were married at Centre Church on August 5.

We extend our love and sympathy to Ginny Smith and her family upon the death of her husband, Mal on July 30. A Memorial Service was held in Laconia, NH on August 5.

Our love and sympathy go out to Ginny Davis and her family upon the death of her husband, Carl on August 5. His funeral was held at Centre Church on August 10.

Our love and sympathy are extended to Margaret Heglund and her family upon the death of her husband, Floyd in April. His Memorial Service was held at Centre Church on August 15.

Scripture Seminars

Interim Pastor Rand Peabody continues to offer a series of Thursday Morning Scripture Seminars, each running from 10:30 to approximately 11:45 a.m. As many as a dozen people at a time have been meeting in August to study “The Wisdom Literature of the Bible”. We have focused on the philosophical frustrations of the Preacher who wrote the Book of Ecclesiastes, and on the ecstatic erotic poetry of The Song of Songs, and on the wrenching spiritual odyssey of the Everyman character called Job.

For the next two sessions, on August 31 and September 7, we will be considering the potent and pithy book of the Proverbs.

Rand continues to urge everyone who is interested and available to “come stretch your knowledge and appreciation of the Bible’s treasure-store of sacred writings.”

Having to dig up more chairs is not a problem!” he insists.

The Seminar convenes in the outer Pastor’s Office each and every Thursday.

Bits ‘n Pieces

Thanks to Tower Exchange: Residual monies from the operation of our Tower Exchange Thrift Shop are being used for various projects around the church. The latest contribution from them is pew cushions for the choir stalls. The Choirs say “Thanks Tower Exchange!!”

Altar Flowers: Each Sunday we have people eager and willing to give flowers to be used on the altar and then distributed to those who might appreciate a small bouquet and visit from a church member. If you would be available to deliver flowers to someone occasionally, please contact the church office.

People Book: Our directory of members and friends is being updated for an October 1 release. Please notify the church office with any changes in your address, phone number and most especially, your email address.

Bread and Roses Meal Preparation: Our monthly meal for Bread and Roses in Lawrence continues each First Wednesday of the month. We prepare a meal for 150-175 people. We gratefully accept donations to help defray the cost of this meal (approx. $275.00 per month). There is also a need for people to bake brownies (once a month or every-other month) or to drive the meal to Lawrence (once or twice a year). Call the church office if you could help in any of these ways.

The Missions Pantry

(to the left as you enter from Summer Street)

The following donations are always welcome:

Redeemable Bottles and Cans. Turned in for money to benefit our Bread and Roses monthly meal preparation.

Aluminum Can Pull Tabs. Recycled to raise money to purchase equipment for the Shriners’ Hospital for Children.

Used Cell Phones: (With a charger & numbers deleted). For emergency use by clients of Help for Abused Women & Their Children in Salem, MA

Used Eyeglasses. Recycled by the Lions Club.

Non Perishable Food for Haven from Hunger in Peabody.

Knitted Squares for the Peabody Red Cross.

Please Note that we are unable to receive donations of housewares

for Bridge House until further notice.



September 3

9:00 am

Morning Worship - Chapel


September 4

Office Closed – Labor Day


September 6

9:00 am

Bread & Roses Meal Prep. – Kitchen


September 7

10:30 am

7:00 pm

7:00 pm

7:30 pm

Scripture Seminar – Pastor’s Office

Pastor’s Installation Comm. - Fireside Room

Membership Comm – Pastor’s Office

Senior Choir – Choir Room

Our thoughts and prayers are Hal Holappa at the Veterans’ Hospital, 200 Springs Rd., Bedford, 01730; Mildred Lisi at SunBridge, 134 North St., N. Reading, 01864; Catherine Newman at Oosterman’s, 93 Laurel St., Melrose, 02176; Jack Turner, at Arnold House, 490 William St., Stoneham, 02180. We also remember in our prayers, Dana Robinson in Kuwait and Dana’s cousin Michael Propeck in Iraq.

Office Hours

In September Rand Peabody will continue to be available at the Church Office on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday mornings from 10 to noon, and at other times by appointment. Weekly Tower Notes have resumed. Deadline for material is on Monday by Noon. Church Office Hours are 9:00 am – 3:00 p.m. beginning Sept. 5.