Tower Notes

Centre Congregational Church
United Church of Christ

We Welcome Everyone: An Open and Affirming Church
Handicap Accessible

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

The Rev. Dr. Dennis C. Bailey, Pastor -
The Rev. Mark Freeman Strickland, Pastor Emertius
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

April 29, 2009



Lessons from Going Back Home

I recently went back home to visit my family. Going back home is both renewing and challenging for me. I moved away thirty-eight years ago when I ventured north to New England to attend graduate school, Andover Newton Theological School, to study to become a minister. I was graduated from Andover Newton in 1974. I was ordained in my home Church, then called Bethlehem Stetlz Cooperative Parish, Glen Rock, Pennsylvania, on September 15, 1974 by the York Association, Penn Central Conference, United Church of Christ.

Challenging: many of the people that were there when I left in 1971 are no longer there. Going back to visit, attending the Sunday morning church service, reminds me of their absence and I grieve not seeing them, talking with them. Some of those people that I miss are family: my father, my grandparents, and, among others, a close friend with whom I used to teach Sunday School. Others have moved away, and/or are attending other churches.

The church has changed, leaving the two denominations to which it once belonged, the United Church of Christ and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America and joining the Evangelical Presbyterian Church. While the church remains deeply rooted in the Reformed tradition which gave it birth, (also an important part of the United Church of Christ), their leaving the United Church of Christ has left me feeling a disconnect with the church that gave me my faith.

Blessing: It is always good to return to the place of the people who gave me my faith. Despite the changes of people and the church's affiliation, it remains a place where faith is nurtured. The people take the Bible seriously, as the Word of God. It is always good to see some of the people I grew up with, to see that they are giving their hearts, minds, souls, voices, and financial support to God's work there. It is a beautiful church, built of stone, communicating strength and endurance. The sanctuary is beautiful, with colorful and artistically refined stained glass windows, lots of medium brown wooden pews, a red wall behind the large wooden altar, and a beautiful to see and hear organ. The church is nestled within the rural community that gave it birth, surrounded by farms and single family homes. The cemetery, where many of my family are buried, is next to the church.

Yes, it is hard to see the church move away from some of the religious beliefs that have become increasingly important to me and yet, it is refreshing to see the persistence of faith and service that continues there. Truth is, while nurturing my own faith and beliefs, this congregation helped me accomplish what every church and congregation is supposed to do, to come to understand what I believed and how I might act on those beliefs. As a result, I came to realize that I believed in the basic tenets of the Christian faith out of the Reformed tradition, but that the way I lived out those beliefs would be slightly to significantly different in particular ways. Yet, it was the people of that church that spread the gospel in my heart, mind, body and soul. That will never change.

The God who gave me birth, the Savior, Jesus Christ, who saves my soul, and the Holy Spirit who inspires and stirs my spirit, was and remains ever present at Bethlehem Steltz Church. If you ever have the opportunity to stop for 9 a.m. worship you can find them in the country on 5890 Steltz Road, Glen Rock, PA 17327. (website:

They are presently searching for a new pastor. The choir is excellent, led by Lee Wineholt, the son of friends of mine. They are hosting their annual Crab Cake and Ham Supper fundraiser, this coming Saturday, May 2nd, starting at 1:30 pm. Superb!!! The crab cakes are handmade by the mixing committee on Friday evening. I love crab cakes! Homemade pies and cakes for dessert!!!

May we, at Centre Church, be as equally dedicated in what God has given us to do.

It was good to go home for a visit, but nice to come back to my home here, where I find the place in which I am excited to serve the Lord where we also continue to give faith to our youth, and define the particulars of what we believe.

Yours in Christ,



May 3, 2009
John 10:11-18

10:00 A.M. Holy Communion

Sermon by the Rev. Dr. Dennis C. Bailey
“Jesus Keeps Talking”

Children may worship with their families for the entire service.

May 10, 2009
John 15:1-8

10:00 A.M. Morning Worship
Sacrament of Baptism

Sermon by the Rev. Dr. Dennis C. Bailey
“Jesus is the True Vine”

Children may worship with their families before going to Rotation Workshops.

The Nursery will be open in Room 14 for both services.




Children’s Corner – May 3 and 10

Nursery Care: Infants through age 3 are invited to join our experienced Nursery staff in Room 14 for stories and playtime during the church service. Pagers are available.

Rotation Workshops: There are no Rotation Workshops scheduled for Sunday, May 3. We invite all children and youth to worship as a family in the sanctuary and receive communion together. Join us for workshops on May 10 as we continue to learn the story from John 21:15-17, “Feed My Sheep”.

7th & 8th Grade: You are invited to worship and receive communion in the sanctuary with your family on May 3. Your class in the Pastor’s Outer Office will meet again on May 10. We look forward to seeing you!



New Members Class

If you are interested in becoming a member of Centre Church, please contact Rev. Bailey concerning a class in May. You may phone 781-334-3050, email –, or speak to him on Sunday.



Vacation Bible School

Be sure to save the date of June 29- July 2 for some Bible School fun! This year our theme is: Kingdom of the Son, The Lord’s Prayer Safari. Details will be sent out soon!



Thank You!

Our flower beds out front are looking great thanks to the mystery person who planted pansies and to some of our cub scouts who weeded, mulched and added more pansies and daffodils. Thank you for your efforts!



Youth News

May 3: All Youth Groups will meet from 6:00-7:30p.m. 5th/6th Grade Group will be in the downstairs kitchen. 7th/8th Grade Group will meet in Todd Hall and the High School will meet in Richards Hall.

May 10: There will be no Youth Group meetings on this night. Make dinner for your mom!



Spring Clean Up Day at Church

Our church is a great facility, but does require some TLC.  Every spring and fall we try to bring together as many people as possible to clean up the yard and do some maintenance chores.  The opportunity you have been waiting for to chip in is going to be held Saturday, May 9 from 8 a.m. until Noon.  Among the tasks to be accomplished: parking lot and garden bed clean-up, painting fence by rear entrance, installing engraved bricks and assorted other chores.  The more the merrier.  This is also the day you can recycle your old PC's and appliances.  So there will be a lot going on that day!  Contact Phil Johnson with any questions. 781-598-5678



Appliance/Freon Bearing/CRT Device Recycling - Saturday, May 9

Spring Cleaning? Wondering what to do with that old television, computer monitor or appliance that is broken, unwanted or unused and just taking up space? Bring it to Centre Church on Saturday, May 9 from 9 am to 12 noon. CRT Recycling will be in the church parking lot to collect your items. This is an excellent opportunity to recycle these items at a minimal cost compared to the high cost associated with curbside appliance recycling programs. (The town of Lynnfield charges $25.00 for monitors and bulk items.)

  • Computer Monitor: $10.00
  • Television: $20.00
  • Air Conditioner: $15.00
  • Stove/Washer/Dryer/Refrigerator: $15.00

Miscellaneous items: Microwave ovens, garbage disposals, printers, telephones, DVD players, video games and computers will be collected at a charge of $5.00 each.

Pick-up is available for Seniors. Please call the church office for more information.



News From Around the Parish

Our congratulations to Kerry MacKenzie and Bill Connors upon the births of daughters Emma Grace Connors and Claire MacKenzie Connors on April 17.



Red Sox Raffle

Attention Red Sox Fans: Want to head to Fenway and catch a game, but find ticket prices too high? Here’s your chance to attend the Boston Red Sox vs. Atlanta Braves game on Friday, June 19 at 7:05 p.m. We are holding a raffle for 2 tickets plus $50.00 toward parking for this game. Tickets will be on sale after worship on May 10 and May 31. The raffle will be held June 7. Tickets are 3 for $10.00 or 9 for $20.00. Please call Mary McCarthy at 508 527 3847 or Barbara Langill in the church office for more information. All proceeds will go toward the High School Mission trip to New Orleans this summer.



Flamingo Flocking Fundraiser

Those lovable plastic pink lawn flamingos are back in town. Please help support the High School Mission Trip and have some fun sending these flamingos to a friend or neighbor for just $20.00. Flocking Forms are available in the church office, by clicking here, or from a High School Youth who will be in the Narthex on Sunday, May 3. Please call Barbara Langill for any additional information.



Golfing With God

We kick off our 7th season of "Golfing with God" at Centre Church on Thursday May 7th at 6 a.m.  We continue every other Thursday for the rest of the summer and play best ball golf at Ready Meadow.  Following that we have a coffee and donut, usually back at church, during which time we have a brief Bible study.  We are done no later than 9 a.m.  For all returning players mark your calendars.  And all new players, feel free to talk to Phil Johnson (781-598-5678) or Chris Parker (781-334-4335) or just come to one of the 10 sessions we have planned.  At the end of the year we play an 18 hole tournament and that is scheduled right now for Friday September 18.




Muscle Conditioning Class

The muscle conditioning class being held Monday nights at 6:30 PM has been extended for another six weeks.  There is a $10 charge per class for this excellent workout.  We use small weights (3 and 5 pounds), medicine balls, tension exercise bands and muscles!!!!!!!  Bring small weights and an exercise pad.  No sign-up is necessary for this class led by instructor Kelly Willing.  The classes will be held each Monday night through June 8th.  See Phil or Sue Johnson with questions. (781-598-5678)




1720 Founders Fund

Have you remembered The 1720 Founders Fund in your Will?

For more information, contact Phil Johnson, 781-598-5678 or Rev. Dennis Bailey, 781-334-3050.

Planned Giving Committee



Outreach Ministries

Proceeds from last fall’s Golf Tournament, $500, will be reserved to prepare a meal at My Brother's Table in Lynn. Al Johnson will head this up. The remaining $826 has been allocated to Bread & Roses for meal preparation.



Easter Offering

As of the end of April $2928.00 was received. One-half of that ($1464.00) will go to our operating budget, 1/3 of the Outreach portion ($488) will be allocated to OCWM and 2/3 ($976) will be allocated to the Youth Group New Orleans Mission Trip.



Easter Plants

Many thank you notes have come from people to whom an Easter Plant was delivered – too many to print! Your appreciation was passed on to the deliverers. We also wish to thank those who so generously ordered and then donated the plants that were delivered.



High School White Water Rafting

All High School youth are invited to join us June 25-27 for our Spring Retreat. We are headed to Maine for white water rafting on the Penobscot River. The cost for the trip is $169.00 which includes 2 night accommodations (in yurts!), 4 meals, and the guided rafting trip. Please return your completed registration form and $75.00 deposit by Sunday, May 17. Call Barbara Langill in the church office with any questions or concerns. Scholarship help is available.



The Boston Pride March

This year’s march is on June 13th! As an ONA church we have been invited to march with the MA Conference ONA Church Marching Delegation. If you are interested in marching please sign up in the Narthex by May 10th. If you have questions please contact Carrie Pericola, our ONA Contact Person. (781-231-0954)






Friday evening May 29th @ 6:30 PM

Pizza, salad, beverages - $20
Trivia brought to you by Jason Cotting

Prizes for the best two teams [tables?]!
Please contact Susan Spear at the Church Office 781-334-3050 or contact Chuck Cotting 781-593-3120

Lots of fun, lots of trivia, good pizza.
Come on down to a nice evening of fellowship.
Donations of dessert are very Welcome!




395 Main Street, Stoneham, MA - Saturday June 13 @ 4 PM
Kathy St George starring in “Dear Miss Garland”

Adults $30 each, Children under 12 $20
Please send your check when you make your reservation!
First come, first served! We have 25 seats!

Please contact Susan Spear at the Church Office 781-334-3050 or contact Dotty Whittier

You may want to have dinner with friends after the show [6:00ish] at the many local restaurants – plan ahead!
Melissa’s Main Street Bistro - 407 Main Street 781-438-7243
Felicia’s of the North End - 423 Main Street 781-438-9399
Gaetano’s Ristorante - 271 Main Street 781-279-0100
Sato 2 Restaurant - 147 Main Street 781-438-8786






May 3
10:00 am
10:00 am
10:00 am
6:00 pm
Holy Communion - Sanctuary
Nursery – Room 14
Children in Worship
Youth Groups (Gr. 5-12)
May 5
7:00 pm Knitting Group – Fireside Room
May 6
8:30 am Bread and Roses Meal Preparation
May 7
6:00 am
7:30 pm
Golf Group – Reedy Meadow
Senior Choir - Choir Room
May 8
10:30 am Scripture Study - Pastor's Office
May 9
Spring Cleanup Day
Recycling Day – Parking Lot
May 10
10:00 am
10:00 am
10:20 am
Morning Worship - Sanctuary
Nursery – Room 14
Rotation Workshops
No Youth Groups
May 12
10:00 am
7:00 pm
Caregivers – Fireside Room
Knitting Group – Fireside Room
May 14
7:30 pm Senior Choir - Choir Room
May 15
10:30 am Scripture Study - Pastor's Office


Our love and prayers are with:

  • Louise Allen at Beaumont Nursing Home, 3 Lyman St., Rm. 203, Westborough, MA 01581
  • Muriel Badger at Nashoba Valley Life Care Center, Foster St., Littleton, 01460
  • Marion Barnes, Abbott Cofran, Glady Davis, Rita Embleton, Carolyn Furey, Hal Holappa, Helen Miller, Evelyn Page, June Rose and Barbara Anderson recuperating at home.

We remember George Robinson III who is serving in Iraq and rejoice that both Derek Cataldo and Kristofer Jenkins are home.


Sunday, May 3, 2009
Ushering and Serving Communion: Deacons
Presenting the Bread: The Lowe Family
Greeters: Meg and Barkey Gulezian
Coffee Hour: Meg and Barkey Gulezian
Provide Altar Flowers: Cheryl and Jim Wersackas
Deliver Altar Flowers: Chuck Cotting and Sue Gustavsen
Lights Out beginning May 1: Camille Ernest


Sunday, May 10, 2009
Head Usher: Michelle Hagerty
Lights Out beginning May 8: Joe Gehret



Cable Broadcasts of Worship

Our Sunday Morning Services can be seen on local access television each week. Below is the schedule:

  • Verizon – Lynnfield & most other towns
    • Thursday at 7 p.m. on Channel 28
    • Saturday & Sunday 9 am – Channel 26
    • Sunday at 3 p.m. – Channel 26
  • Comcast:
    • Lynnfield - Thursday at 7:00 p.m. on Channel 12
    • Peabody - Thursday at 7:00 p.m. on Channel 10
    • N. Reading – Saturday 9:00 am on Channel 10 and Sunday 9 am & 3 pm on Channel 10

DVD and VHS recordings of the services can be borrowed from the Church Office at any time.



Next Tower Notes: Week of May 11