Centre Congregational Church
We Welcome Everyone:
An "Open & Affirming" Church
(781) 334-3050;Fax: (781) 334-6463; Email: Office@Centre-Church.org
The Rev. Dr. Dennis
C. Bailey, Pastor - Pastor@Centre-Church.org
January 10, 2007
Asking for Serious Help
Have you ever had to ask for some serious help? I have. Sometimes from my mother when I needed help to buy a car, get out of trouble, etc. There are some other times that come to mind. I was in my first year of college, commuting. One day on the way home I was in an auto accident. It was deemed that it was my fault (fortunately no one was seriously hurt). My driving record was riddled with speeding tickets. That accident put me over the edge and my insurance company found me to be a bad risk (Surprise!). So, I needed auto insurance. A man who was one of the advisors of an organization I was in got me new insurance. Yes, it was expensive, but I could continue to drive. He offered the help. I accepted it and greatly appreciated it.
Several years into my career I needed $3,000 to buy a new car. I asked a friend of mine if I could borrow the money. He had reached out to me to offer such if I ever needed it. He knew that I was experiencing hard times. He lent me the money. I paid back $1,000 or $2,000 of it when he became very ill. I visited him in the hospital but had not managed to pay back the balance. It bothered me and I didn't know what to do because he had terminal cancer. So, I called his secretary of many years who I also knew well. She offered to talk to my friend. A day or two later I received a phone call from my friend, in his hospital bed. He said, "Dennis, I don't need the money where I am going." He died two days later. I was asked to speak the eulogy at his funeral.
My friend was an Osteopathic physician who took great pride in his work, plying the trade of medicine with his specialty of treating injuries of the back, neck, skeletal and muscular injuries. He was real good. I once seriously injured my back on a Saturday, lifting risers for a church event. I was hurting so bad that I had to have my daughter drive me to my friend, the doctor's, office. I couldn't walk without using my hands to support me. My friend treated me within two hours of my injury. I walked out of his office. I walked, not crawled as was the case when I went in. The next day I barely knew I had been injured. His vocation was helping people through the art and practice of his unique medical practice. I met many a Boston firefighter in his waiting room, affirming the wide-spread respect for this great and humble man of medicine and healing. Through the work of his hands and the dedication of his heart he brought great healing to many. He found his greatest treasure in conversation with his patients and friends. Every new patient was treated with the same respect and care. He found tremendous rewards in helping other people in any way he could.
I asked him for serious medical help on many occasions. Each time I went to his office for treatment he would ask, "So, Dennis, who did you help move this time?" How did he know?
Asking for serious help can be an occasion for the visible and invisible grace of God to enter our lives. Jesus came to give us serious help, visible and invisible. He gave us the serious help of forgiveness no matter how many times we need it. He gave us the serious help of unconditional love. He gave us faith to face the future. He gave us faith to have a future today and into eternity. He prepares a place of service for us in this life and a place of honor in his kingdom. Jesus helped us see how no matter our place in this world, we are welcome to receive and to give his love. Serious help, serious love, a serious friend, and a Savior.
Yours in Christ,
IN THE SANCTUARY
January 14, 2007
Second Sunday after Epiphany
I Corinthians 12:1-11
10:00 A.M. Morning Worship
Sermon by the Rev. Dr.
Dennis C. Bailey
"Life As A Festival!"
Children may worship with their families for the entire service.
Service broadcast on Lynnfield Cable Channels 10 or 28 and Peabody Cable Channel 10 at 7:00 p.m. on Thursday.
Parenting Teens Seminar
Beginning on January 22, Mary Ann Parker and Barbara Nickerson will lead a parenting seminar covering topics such as identity, turmoil, rebellion and legacy. The group will also examine scripture to find helpful tools for good parenting.
Please join us each Monday night at 6:30 p.m. in the Movie Room on the 2nd Floor. This series will last for 6 weeks.
From the Mailbox
Dear Members of Centre Church,
Thank you so much for the generous and thoughtful Christmas cards you provided to patients of the Barbara McInnis House. Their delight upon receiving the surprise on Christmas morning was wonderful to see. One gentleman from China who speaks little English came wheeling back in his chair when he realized what the card contained, and with the biggest grin on his face, held up the phone card and shouted "Mama!" His father died earlier in the year so this was the best present he ever could have received. Again, thanks for your kindness. You will never know how much your gift may have lifted someones spirit, but God does. But may you always know how God blesses you!
Sincerely, Eileen Fortunato
Food for the Spiritually Hungry
This years Confirmation Class has begun. There are 14 9th Graders and their Sponsors who will meet once a week either after church on Sunday or on Monday evening. We need your support for this program in the form of a light lunch for the Sunday after-church class and a light snack for the Monday evening class. Please call Mary Ann Parker if you can help out. 781-334-4335 or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The next Rotation Unit will be "Boy Jesus in the Temple" beginning on January 21. There will be a leader meeting on Tuesday, Jan. 16 at 7 p.m. in the library.
Dr. Bednars Book Added to Library
In honor of Centre Churchs illustrious former pastor, the late Rev. Dr. Zdenek F. Bednar, I have placed in our church library a book titled "Sermons for All Seasons." This book, with an accompanying CD, is a compilation of some of Dr. Bednars sermons, edited by his son-in-law Alan MacDonald, and published this year in celebration of the inspirational ministry of Dr. Bednar. I believe a reading, or selected study, of this book will enrich your Christian faith journey, just as Dr. Bednar enriched Centre Church with his devoted ministry.
Youth Groups Plan Tubing Trip
Both Youth Groups will be going tubing at Nashoba Valley on January 28. The cost is $20.00. We will be taking a bus, so be sure to get your permission slip and payment back to the church office by Jan 21. (Yes, there Will Be Snow!)
Cable Coverage of Services
Due to technical difficulties at the cable stations, our broadcast of Sunday services has not been consistent in Lynnfield. On Thursday, January 11 the worship service from January 7 will be broadcast on Cable Channel 28 (Verizon) at 7:00 p.m. and the Christmas Pageant will be broadcast at 8:00 p.m.
Mass Bible Society Luncheon
On Thursday, January 18 from noon to 1:15 p.m., Rev. Dr. Donald A. Wells, Executive Director of the Mass Bible Society will give a presentation on the theme "The Bible Alive!: Reflections on My Sojourn with MBS". The luncheon will be held in Sproat Hall, The Episcopal Diocese Building, 138 Tremont St., Boston. For reservations call 617-542-2230 or email email@example.com by noon on January 16.
You Are Invited!
Our women's fellowship group, the Get Together Wheel, is pleased to present Rev. Pat Bade, who is a storyteller of Irish and Native American Ancestry. She is descended from the Penobscot people of Maine where she learned her traditions from her grandmother and other generous elders. She is also Irish and Scottish.
Some of the things she will be talking about are
I think she will sing a few songs too.
She is very interesting and presents everything so nicely. If you are interested in joining us, please call either Jane Vancor or Donna Marino by Friday, Jan. 19. This will help in planning refreshments and seating.
Please join us. This is a great way to meet new people too.
Donna Marino (781) 581-2022
Jane Vancor (781) 334-4777
Videos and DVDs Available
If you have to miss worship one week, please remember that copies of recent worship services are available for check-out from the church office anytime.
Youth Choir Choir Room
Confirmation Class #2 - Pastors Office
No Rotations or Youth Groups this week
Office Closed Martin Luther King Day
Confirmation Class #2 Pastors Office
Group Fireside Room
Rotation Leaders Meeting Library
|7:30 pm||Senior Choir Choir Room|
|10:30 am||Scripture Study Pastors Office|
Our thoughts and prayers are with Glady Davis, Wingate at Andover Rehab, 80 Andover St., Andover, MA 01810; Hal Holappa at the Veterans Hospital, 200 Springs Rd., Bedford, 01730; Mildred Lisi at SunBridge, 134 North St., N. Reading, 01864; Catherine Newman at Oostermans 93 Laurel St., Melrose, 02176; Jack Turner at Arnold House, 490 William St., Stoneham, 02180; Anne Gist recuperating at home.
We also remember Michael Blute in Iraq.
Sunday, January 14, 2007
Head Usher: Karen Harrington
Lay Reader: Will Parker
Coffee Hour: Grayce Kushmerek and Susan Spear
Flower Delivery: Karen Harrington and Barbara Ericson