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

July 2, 2008

 


 

We Are Interconnected

As a person of faith thinking about summer I think about our interconnectedness. Whoa! Such a big word!

Growing up a farm boy I realized that one thing is connected to another. The crops we planted depended upon the rain. Unlike some parts of the country I have visited, we did not have an irrigation system to water the land when it didn't rain. So, we trusted God to provide what we needed, a perfect blend of rain and sun. Usually, it seemed, things worked out, or at least we liked to think, hope, and pray.

We are interconnected with our neighbors: We would work hard to rid ourselves of certain plants that could easily take over the fields, like a thing we called “Mustard Seed.” We would go into the fields of hay and pull all of these plants that we could so that they didn't flower and seed. Some of our neighbors did the same and some did not. So, what we did to rid ourselves of the Mustard Seed benefited our neighbors, too.

We depended upon the work of others to supply us with the fertilizer, seed, equipment, fuel, etc. to help us work our farm. Occasionally, we depended upon others to work for us when we couldn't do it all ourselves.

In this season of summer many of us travel to other communities where we meet and make friends. These friendships, in some cases, become important parts of our lives. Moving around as a minister reminds me of this because I meet people here who know people from my past. What I have done in one place becomes connected with what I'm doing here through the sharing of stories, myths, and remembrances. Recently while visiting a parishioner in a Boston hospital I saw a former parishioner, a nurse, coming out of the room to which I was headed. Through conversations before I arrived they had made the connections and shared information about me. Now, the interconnectedness of my past and present has been made. It's exciting, usually!

We are interconnected with our world: When we travel we make these connections. I have traveled to some interesting places but the one that stands out most, at the moment, is Ghana, in West Africa. At the invitation of friends I traveled with a group to Ghana on the occasion of the 50th Anniversary of the Mawuli School, in Ho, Ghana, in the year 2000. Some of my friends served as teaching missionaries there on behalf of the United Church of Christ and its predecessor denomination, The Evangelical and Reformed Church.

German missionaries out of the Protestant Reformed tradition brought the gospel there many years ago. The British were in power and control there and mandated that the English language be taught and learned. The British had also made a commitment to establish a private Christian

secondary school there. They called upon people from that same Protestant Reformed tradition to establish the school. That is how our religious forebears from the Evangelical and Reformed Church got involved.

While growing up in this country, learning the faith and living out their lives in the quiet and conservative state of Ohio, my friends, as disciples, had no idea that their lives would become interconnected with the citizens of West Africa. About sixty years ago the call went out to the people of faith that teachers, nurses, administrators, and others were needed in Ghana to improve the quality of life there. Skilled people were needed but first of all, they needed to be people of faith out of the Protestant Reformed tradition.

Suddenly my friends heard the call and decided, after much prayer and reflection, to move their whole families from Ohio to Ghana! Were they crazy or what? Their families grew while they were there. What their forebears had, in faith, given to them, became a blessing to others in another place, world, and culture. And, what the Ghanaian people had to share became a blessing to my friends from Ohio. Lives were changed and now the interconnectedness of God's people continues.

I have a greater appreciation for how we are blessed to know more about each other, how God is working, even now, to strengthen the ties that bind us together.

In this spirit I encourage us all to remember these words of Jesus, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself.” (Luke 10:27).

Remember, also, these words of the Psalmist who speaks to God:

You care for the land and water it;
you enrich it abundantly.
The streams of God are filled with water
to provide the people with grain,
for so you have ordained
You drench its furrows
and level its ridges;
you soften it with showers
and bless its crops.

We are connected! God makes it so. We know it to be true just by looking at the products in our grocery stores which come from all over the world. What we do makes a difference. Let us do it well, be loving and kind toward all, and know that our action or inaction, will make a difference. Let us pray that we do what God would want, no matter where we go this summer.

Yours in Christ,
Dennis

 


 

IN THE CHAPEL - 9:00 a.m.
July 6, 2008
Genesis 2:4b-9, Matthew 5:1-16
Holy Communion
Sermon by the Rev. Dr. Dennis C. Bailey
“The Cause”

 

July 13, 2008
Sermon by Seavey Bowdoin
“Reason or Revelation”

 

July 20, 2008
Sermon by the Rev. Dr. Dennis C. Bailey
Commissioning of Mission Trip And NationalYouth Event Participants

 

July 27, 2008
Sermon by the Rev. Dr. Dennis C. Bailey

 


 

 

Join us for Dinner on July 8

Former Associate Pastor Marlene Pomeroy will be here on Tuesday, July 8. Join us for a light supper in Todd Hall at 6:00 p.m. Dinner will be provided at a cost of $8.00. Please call the church office (781-334-3050) or email office@centre-church.org by Monday morning, July 7 to let us know you can come. - Susan Spear and Alison Weaver

 

 

National Youth Event

There will be a meeting for all those going to Tennessee for the National Youth Event on Wednesday, July 16 at 7 pm in the Fireside Room. We will discuss transportation to the airport, packing, and details of the trip. Please call Barbara Langill in the church office if you are unable to attend the meeting.

 

 

Vacation Bible School

The Rainforest Adventure Vacation Bible School was held this past week with fun and learning for kids ages 4-10. The children enjoyed skits in the Chapel, experiments in the science room, crafts in the art room, along with story time, snacks, and games. Thanks to Lisa Gerbick for all her efforts planning and organizing this event and to all our wonderful volunteers who really made the week a great experience for all the kids.

 

 

Flowers for the Chapel

Do you have garden flowers you would like to provide for the altar some Sunday in August? Please call the church office to let us know.

 

 

School Supply Drive in July

Youth group member, Stephanie English, is seeking donations for a “School Supply Drive” for Cradles to Crayons. Cradles to Crayons would appreciate donations of the following: 24-pack crayons, washable markers, colored pencils, # 2 pencils, spiral notebooks (wide ruled), glue sticks, pencil sharpeners, pocket folders, dictionaries, pencil boxes, and blue and black pens.

Please drop off items/donations in the box by the entrance to the Chapel anytime between July 1 and August 3. Your donations are greatly appreciated.

Thank you.

 

 

Rotation Sensation Volunteers Needed

We are in need of a few more volunteers to complete our Rotation Sensation team for next fall. There are opportunities for a short 4-5 week commitment leading a workshop such as movie, cooking or drama. You might also consider volunteering as a shepherd, which entails staying with the same class for the entire year. We are also in need of caregivers for the nursery. Please consider sharing your gifts with the children and youth of Centre Church - call Barbara or Jill in the church office today!

 

 

Summer Sunday Adventure
Essex River Cruise
Sunday August 17, 2008- 3:30 – 5:00 p.m.

The Centre Church Essex River Cruise count is now up to 67 AND we are now in two boats! As we passed 65 we moved into two boats to fit everyone in. Deadline for Sign Up and Payment is August 1st. Then: Join up at Woodman’s [just around the corner on Rt. 133] for dinner. Chris Parker’s A Capella Group, Peking and the Mystics, will be performing at Woodman’s. Dinner will be on your own, so you can pick the food you want.

The cost is $22. Many of you have paid the $11 deposit and some have paid the whole $22. Please send your payments to the Church Office made out to Centre Church with Essex River Cruise as a note.

Call Chuck Cotting 781-593-3120 if you have questions. If you need a ride, please let Chuck or Susan Spear know!

Hosted By Your Membership Commission

 

 

News From Around the Parish

We extend our love and sympathy to Elaine Pyburn upon the recent death of her brother, Richard G. Hammer of Wolfeboro, MA.

We extend our love and sympathy to Debbie Triffletti upon the recent death of her aunt, Eleanor Egli of Pennsylvania.

We extend our love and sympathy to Phil Johnson upon the death of his mother Esther Johnson of Attleboro on June 22.

A graveside service was held at Forest Hill Cemetery on June 20 for former member Robert G. Newman. He is survived by his children Carol Jean Homer and Robert M. Newman.

 

 

From the Mailbox

Greg Lengyel arrived home from Iraq on June 30. His whole family sincerely thanks everyone for their prayers for his safety.

Dorene Lengyel

 

 

Missions Pantry

Our ongoing collections include Aluminum Can Pull Tabs, Used Eyeglasses, Non-Perishable Food, Travel Size Toiletries, Knitted Squares, and Used Cell Phones (numbers erased with charger).

 

 

News from Scout Troop 48

In June, 25 scouts and 11 parents canoed the Ipswich River.  After a hard day of paddling, the troop camped on Perkins Island in the Ipswich River Wildlife Sanctuary.  The next morning, the troop continued downstream ending at Foote Brother’s Canoe Livery.  The troop plans to attend Summer Camp at T.L. Storer Scout Reservation in Barnstead, NH in July. - John Walsh

 

 

Summer Office Schedule

The Church Office will be open mornings only during July and August. (9:00 a.m. – Noon). Tower Notes will be published as follows: July 28 and August 25.

 

 


 

OUR OPPORTUNITIES

 

Sunday
July 6
9:00 am Holy Communion - Chapel
Tuesday
July 8
6:00 pm Dinner with Marlene Pomeroy – Todd Hall
Friday
July 11
10:30 am Scripture Study - Pastor's Office
Sunday
July 13
9:00 am Morning Worship - Chapel
Wednesday
July 16
7:00 pm National Youth Event Meeting - Fireside Room
Thursday
July 17
6:00 am Golf Group – Reedy Meadow
Friday
July 18
10:30 am Scripture Study - Pastor's Office
Sunday
July 20
9:00 am Morning Worship - Chapel
Friday
July 25
10:30 am Scripture Study - Pastor's Office
Sunday
July 27
9:00 am Morning Worship - Chapel
Thursday
July 31
6:00 am Golf Group – Reedy Meadow

 

Our thoughts and prayers are with:

We also remember Brian Bisacre in Iraq and Greg Lengyel who arrived home from Iraq on June 30.

 

Sunday, July 6, 2008
Ushers: Deacons
Punch: Caroline Walsh and Lee Clark
Flowers: Edie Richard

Sunday, July 13, 2008
Head Usher: Michelle Hagerty
Punch: Edie Richard
Flowers: Marcia Stevens

Sunday, July 20, 2008
Head Usher: Jeff Law
Flowers: Greta Hellmer

Sunday, July 27, 2008
Ushers: Deacons
Punch: Sue Gustavsen
Flowers: Barbara Becker