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: Office@Centre-Church.org
5 Summer Street, Lynnfield, Massachusetts 01940

The Rev. Dr. Dennis C. Bailey, Pastor - Pastor@Centre-Church.org
Jill Couillard & Barbara Langill - Directors of Christian Education & Youth Ministry - ChristianEd@Centre-Church.org

Douglas W. Hodgkins: Organist/Choir Director
Sally MacDonald, Director of Tower Day School
Susan Spear, Secretary

January 9, 2008

 


 

The January Thaw

Wow, isn't it amazing, how we have all of this snow and then, in the heart of winter, during January, we have this amazingly mild weather. I might even be able to wash my own car in my driveway this week! Maybe it's a guy thing, a desire to be one with my vehicle, but I enjoy washing my own car instead of taking it to the car wash.

What about our faith? Do we also have a January thaw in our zeal to attend to our spiritual journey? I mean, during Advent and Christmas, we attend worship, we seek, find, and have the Christmas spirit. But now that Jesus is born, now what?

I put most of my Christmas decorations away. I keep working on the projects that need tending to in my house. I keep doing what gives me meaning - my work, my friends, my family. I keep attentive to how the Holy Spirit, how God's presence, is working in my life. I try to be aware that God's presence may enter my life at any time, by any means.

In the days when I was training to run the Boston Marathon, 1998, 1999, and 2000, I learned how important it is to be attentive to the training required to be ready to run the big race. In 1998 I was in pretty good shape and ran well, achieving my goal of running the race under 4 hours (3h, 50 m). In 1999, though, I didn't maintain the discipline of a good training schedule. I slacked off. I had a training thaw, working out when it was convenient, once or twice a week. It was not good enough because the day of the big race I pulled a hamstring within the first 2 miles, and limped my way to the finish line, feeling lucky to take no longer than 4 hours and 30 minutes. I sought professional help via two professional trainers. They both said the same thing: work out 6 days a week. Three days at the gym doing strength training and three days running.

The consistent training for a year worked, but it was time-consuming and boring, most days. There were so many things that seemed so much more important than my training program. But I was motivated by my bad experience in 1999 and a desire to see how well I could run if I stuck with the recommended program. It worked! I ran my last Boston Marathon with ease, no injuries, and with confidence.

Our spiritual life is the same way. When we follow a consistent program of prayer, scripture reading and reflection, and find support in a spiritual community like a church, a Bible Study group, some form of spiritual support group, our way can be a lot easier. When we are personally involved in mission, contributing to and participating in a program in which we give of ourselves to others, God helps us see beyond ourselves, how we can be a help for the sake of others. When we do these things, make a commitment and follow through, we are better prepared for the challenges that we face.

From the Apostle Paul:
“...we rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us” (Romans 5:3-5, NIV) “...we rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not disappoint us, because God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us” (Romans 5:3-5, NIV)

Yours in Christ,
Dennis

 


 

IN THE SANCTURY
Sunday, January 13, 2008
Matthew 3:13-17

10:00 A.M. Morning Worship

Sermon by the Rev. Dr. Dennis C. Bailey
“Another Day at the River”

Children’s Message: “Together With God”

Children may worship with families before going to Rotation Workshops.

Centre Church’s Worship Services are broadcast on Lynnfield Cable Channel 10 (Comcast) or Channel 28 (Verizon) on Thursday evenings at 7:00 p.m. and also on Peabody Cable Channel 10 on Sunday mornings at 9:00 a.m.

 


 

 

Rotation Sensation

Nursery

Our Nursery is open for infants through age 3. Come and join the fun as we play games and listen to stories.

Rotation Sensation

January 13 marks the beginning of a new unit for Rotation Sensation. Our new unit is “Jesus Walks on Water” and is found in the book of Matthew. Check the bulletin board to find out which workshop the kids will be attending.

OWL Program

Our Whole Lives continues on January 13 for youth in grades 7-9. Please meet in the Pastor’s Outer Office from 10:00 – 11:30 a.m.

Please contact Jill Couillard or Barbara Langill (781-334-3050) with questions about any of these programs.

 

 

Donations Needed

On January 13 we will be celebrating “UNDY SUNDAY”. We are asking everyone to bring a donation of children’s underwear, sizes 2T-16 which the High School Youth Group will take to Cradles to Crayons on Jan. 20. Other donations are also welcome, especially kid’s clothing in sizes 11/12 &14/16. For more information, check out their website at www.cradlestocrayons.org.

 

 

Your Generosity Is Much Appreciated

THANK YOU to all who generously donated to the gifts under the tree for the Crombie Street Mission and the financial donations for both fuel assistance and Haven from Hunger. Also thanks to those who donated to the City Mission Society in lieu of sending Christmas Cards. As always, your gifts are needed and appreciated

 

 

Youth Groups

All Youth Groups will meet on Sunday, January 13 from 6:00 – 7:30 p.m. 5th Grade Group will meet in the downstairs kitchen. 6th-8th Grade Group will meet in Todd Hall. 9th-12th Grade Group will meet in Richards Hall.

Remember - youth will eat together with their group and share in an activity/lesson and games. Come and join the fun and fellowship.

All groups will go snow tubing on the afternoon of January 27.

 

 

Heifer Ark Presentation Re-Scheduled

We will welcome a representative from Heifer International to our worship service on Sunday, January 27 as she presents 2 arks to our congregation. These arks represent $10,000.00 in donations to Heifer International in 2006 and 2007. Deep gratitude is extended to all of you who contributed to Heifer – whether you donated a quarter or a heifer, you are changing the world for the better!

 

 

Service Opportunity

The High School Youth Group will be volun-teering at Cradles to Crayons in Quincy on Sunday, January 20 from 1 to 3 pm.   We will meet in the church parking lot at 12:15 p.m. Be sure to eat lunch before you come. We will plan to drop youth off at their homes around 3:30 p.m. Please return your permission forms to the church by Sunday, January 13 if you plan to attend. Parents: additional drivers/volunteers are needed. Please call Barbara Langill in the church office if you are available.

 

 

National Youth Event

Every four years the United Church of Christ offers a National Youth Event for youth and leaders throughout the country.  This event is expected to draw over 3,000 youth and will be held at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville July 24-28. Each day will include worship, music, workshops, speakers, meeting new friends and recreation.  Our group will be traveling by air so we need to get our reservations made soon.  Please send in your deposit of $50.00 by Sunday, Feb. 3. if you wish to participate.  Youth entering 9th grade in the fall through those currently in 12th grade are invited to attend.  Please call Barbara Langill with any questions you may have.

 

 

New Orleans Mission Trip

We currently have 15 youth committed to this summer’s mission trip to New Orleans.  There is still space for a few more.  We will be flying out of Boston on August 1 and returning August 8. Groups will be housed at New Orleans churches. Opportunities for service may include work at a children’s day camp, painting schools and rebuilding homes

The deadline for you to decide if you plan on coming along is January 27.  Please call Barbara Langill at the church office if you plan on attending.

 

 

News From Around the Parish

On behalf of all of us at Centre Church, we wish to congratulate John C. Smith as he is honored by the Town of Lynnfield for his many years of public service to the town. John’s spirit of volunteerism has blessed Lynnfield and its citizens. John will be honored at Spinelli’s function facility on Wednesday, January 16 at 7:00 p.m. We are all very proud of John! God bless you, John and thanks from us all.

 

 

Cable Coverage of Services

Centre Church’s Worship Services are broadcast on Lynnfield Cable Channel 10 (Comcast) or Channel 28 (Verizon) on Thursday evenings at 7:00 p.m. and also on Peabody Cable Channel 10 on Sunday mornings at 9:00 a.m.

In addition, DVDs of each service may be checked out from the Church Office for viewing in case you missed a week.

 

 

W A N T E D For the Missions Pantry

Please note that at this time we are not taking housewares for Bridge House.

 

 


 

OUR OPPORTUNITIES

 

Sunday
January 13
10:00 am
10:00 am
10:00 am
10:20 am
11:30 am
11:30 am
6:00 pm
Morning Worship - Sanctuary
Nursery Care – Room 14
OWL Group (Gr.7-9) Pastor’s Office
Rotation Workshops
Confirmation Class – Field Trip
Youth Choir – Choir Room
Youth Groups (Grades 5 - 12)
Tuesday
January 15
7:00 pm Knitting Group – Fireside Room
Wednesday
January 16
7:00 pm Outreach Ministry – Fireside Room
Thursday
January 17
7:30 pm Senior Choir - Choir Room
Friday
January 18
10:30 am Scripture Study - Pastor's Office

 

Our thoughts and prayers are with:

  • Ginny Davis at Lahey, Peabody
  • Mardi Sullivan, Barbara O’Connell’s daughter
  • John Wishart at Melrose Wakefield Hospital
  • Muriel Badger, River Court Residency, Apt. 227, 8 West Main Street, Groton, MA 01472
  • Glady Davis, Haven Health Care, 20 Chester Road, Derry, NH 03038
  • Hal Holappa at the Veterans’ Hospital, 200 Springs Rd., Bedford, 01730
  • Helen Miller at The Meadows at Edgewood - Mail: c/o Susan Rielly, 492 Pearl St., Brockton, MA 02301
  • June Rose at her daughter’s home, 37 Spring St., Lunenburg, MA 01462
  • Jack Orrall and Barbara Bean at home.

We also remember Greg Lengyel, Paul Folkins and Brian Bisacre in Iraq.

 

Sunday, January 13, 2008
Head Usher: Karen Harrington
Altar Flowers Provided: Lola & Stephen Leggett
Altar Flowers Delivered: Sue Gustavsen and Chuck Cotting