Announcements June 26

THE 3RD SUNDAY AFTER PENTECOST

26 June 2022

Welcome!  We extend a warm welcome to our guests, and invite you to sign the guest book at the back of the sanctuary.  Everyone is invited to remain for a cup of coffee in the Church Hall following the service.  Enjoy a piece of cake as well, in celebration of Rob McPherson’s 65th birthday!

Summer Services – This year, we’re returning to our tradition of participating in joint summer services with the two United Church congregations in town, as announced in the Newsletter.  This summer, we will be exploring various miracle stories in the Bible, and the schedule will be as follows:

July          3      McKenzie     Jesus feeds the five thousand

              10      McKenzie     Jesus heals a man blind from birth

              17      McKenzie     Jesus raises Lazarus from death

              24      First              God provides manna in the wilderness

              31      First              The healing of Naaman

August     7      First              Jesus heals a centurion’s slave

              14      Trinity           Jesus calms a storm

              21      Trinity           Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego

              28      Trinity           Jesus turns water into wine.

(continued)

Summer Services(continued)

This year, all services will be led by the minister of the host congregation.  Since McKenzie doesn’t yet have a minister, services there will be led by Norman Collier (3, 17 July) and Julie Hutton (10 July).  Pandemic protocols at both McKenzie and Trinity are pretty much the same as those here at First.  For details, see the separate announcement, below.

Full announcements here

Announcements June 12

Pleas note that today’s outdoor service has been moved indoors because of the rainy weather, the rest of the announcements are here. A few highlights:

Keith Kelly is our preacher today, and John Zondag will lead the rest of the service. We thank Keith for taking part in leading today’s service.

This Week in First Church:

Thursday, 7:00 p.m. – Joint Session and Finance & Maintenance Committee meeting

Coming up:

Wednesday, 22 June, 5:00 p.m. – Meal-in-a-Bowl Supper

Announcements June 5

PENTECOST

THE 8TH SUNDAY OF EASTER

COMMUNION SUNDAY

5 June 2022

Welcome!  We extend a warm welcome to our guests, and invite you to sign the guest book at the back of the sanctuary.  We extend a special welcome to Coralie MacLaren, who is filling in for Margaret McNutt-Reichelt today as our pianist!  Everyone is invited to remain for a cup of coffee in the Church Hall following the service.

Communion – Today’s service is a Communion service.  Due to pandemic-related precautions, we are continuing to do things a bit differently than usual, as follows:

– The texts that we normally read from the hymnbook (the Apostles’ Creed, etc.) will be shown on the screen.

– The Communion table will remain in the chancel, for the sake of physical distancing.

– Rather than passing the bread and juice through the sanctuary, you will be invited to come forward to receive the bread and juice, which are set out on another table at the front.

– Please come forward by the center aisle, and return to your seat by the side aisles.  Please come forward separately (or along with those in your own household), in order to maintain physical distancing.  Please take the bread and juice set out at either end of the table (left or right), working your way toward the center.

– The bread and juice may be either consumed at the front, or taken back to your seat.  We will not wait for everyone to consume the bread and juice simultaneously, as we would normally do.  As usual, the bread is gluten-free.

– Anyone who doesn’t feel comfortable receiving Communion today should feel free not to partake.

This Week in First Church:

– Sunday – Wednesday – John is “at” General Assembly

– Wednesday, 6:30 p.m. – Finance & Maintenance Committee meeting

Coming up:

– Sunday, 12 June – Outdoor Service and Barbecue

The Christian Year – Today is Pentecost, the fiftieth and final day of the Easter season, and the last of the four major festivals of the Christian Year (the others being Christmas, Epiphany, and Easter).  Pentecost celebrates the giving of the Holy Spirit to the disciples and followers of Jesus, seven weeks after his resurrection (and ten days after his ascension), as narrated in Acts 2.1-41.  The Holy Spirit was given to the community of Jesus’ followers to take his place as their teacher and leader, and to empower them to continue his ministry.  The Holy Spirit continues to be given today to everyone who believes in Jesus.

     Pentecost was originally a Jewish festival (called the “Festival of Weeks” in the Old Testament), which took place seven weeks after the Passover festival.  On that day, offerings of the “first fruits” of the wheat harvest were presented to God in gratitude for the harvest.  By the First Century, it had also come to commemorate God’s giving the Law to Israel at Mount Sinai.  Thousands of Jews from all over the Roman Empire and beyond traveled to Jerusalem for Pentecost each year.  When the disciples started speaking in all kinds of languages, these “Jews from every nation under heaven” were all able to understand what the disciples were telling them about Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection (Acts 2.5-11).

     The symbolic color for Pentecost is red, recalling the “tongues of fire” that appeared to Jesus’ disciples when the Holy Spirit came upon them (Acts 2.3).  The name “Pentecost” comes from the Greek word pentēkostós (“fiftieth”), since the Jewish Pentecost festival was the fiftieth day after Passover.

Full announcements here

Announcements May 29

THE 7TH SUNDAY OF EASTER

29 May 2022

Welcome!  We extend a warm welcome to our guests, and invite you to sign the guest book at the back of the sanctuary.  Everyone is invited to remain for a cup of coffee in the Church Hall following the service.

This Week in First Church:

– Tuesday, 7:00 p.m. – Bible study, by Zoom

Coming up:

– Sunday, 5 June – Pentecost, and Communion Sunday

– Sunday, 5 June – Wednesday, 8 June – John is “at” General Assembly

– Sunday, 12 June – Outdoor Service and Barbecue

Something Red – Next Sunday, 5 June, will be Pentecost, the festival of the giving of the Holy Spirit to the community of Jesus’ disciples and followers, as told in Acts 2.1-41.  Since the symbolic color for Pentecost is red, those who wish to are encouraged to wear something red for our service that day, as a way of recognizing the occasion!

Communion – Next Sunday’s service will be a Communion service.  The elements will once again be served in a “physically-distanced” way.  That is, everyone will come to the front to pick up the bread and juice, either singly or in family groups.  More detailed directions will be provided next Sunday.

Newsletter – The May issue of the Newsletter has been sent out to everyone on our e-mail list, and hard copies will be mailed to everyone else at the beginning of the week.  Many thanks to everyone who contributed items for this issue, as well as to Lisa Sneesby for putting the Newsletter together, and Mardine Garnham for printing and mailing the hard copies!

In Two Weeks – We will again hold an Outdoor Service and Barbecue, following a two-year hiatus, at Bruce and Lisa Sneesby’s farm.  The date is Sunday, 12 June, with the service beginning at 10:30, as usual, and the barbecue following.  The address is 78115 Highway 50, just north of Highway 16, on the right side of the road.  Food and drinks will be provided.  Make sure to bring your own lawnchair(s)!

Full announcements here

Announcements May 22

THE 6TH SUNDAY OF EASTER

ASCENSION SUNDAY

22 May 2022

Welcome!  We extend a warm welcome to our guests, and invite you to sign the guest book at the back of the sanctuary.  Everyone is invited to remain for a cup of coffee in the Church Hall following the service.

This Week in First Church:

– Today – Deadline for submissions for the May Newsletter

– Tuesday, 7:00 p.m. – Bible study, by Zoom

– Wednesday, 5:00 p.m. – Meal-in-a-Bowl Supper

– Thursday, 7:00 p.m. – Session meeting, by Zoom

Coming up:

– Sunday, 5 June – Pentecost, and Communion Sunday

– Sunday, 12 June – Outdoor Service and Barbecue

Ukraine – PWS&D is accepting donations toward the effort to provide assistance to refugees fleeing the Russian invasion of Ukraine.  The most urgent needs are for food, water, and shelter.  PWS&D provides assistance through its partners, the ACT Alliance and the Canadian Foodgrains Bank.  Donations can be made through our congregation; just mark your cheque or envelope “PWS&D – Ukraine”.  If you would like your donation to reach PWS&D faster, you can donate online, using your credit card.  Go to www.WeRespond.ca, click on “Ukraine Crisis Appeal” or “Ukraine Crisis: Irina’s Story”; then click on the “Donate Now” button, and follow the prompts.  You can check the website also for periodic updates.

Newsletter – If you have any submissions for the May issue of the Newsletter, please get them to Lisa Sneesby (bsneesby@mymts.net) today.

The Christian Year – This Thursday is Ascension Day, the festival that commemorates Jesus’ “ascension”, or return to heaven, which is described in Acts 1.1-11.  Acts 1.3 says that Jesus appeared to the disciples over a period of 40 days following his resurrection, and so Ascension Day is the 40th day of the Easter Season, always falling on the Thursday following the 6th Sunday of Easter.  The Sunday either before or after Ascension Day is designated “Ascension Sunday”.

     Jesus’ ascension marked the end of his ministry on earth, and his return to his glorious existence in heaven.  From then on, his ministry on earth would be continued by his followers, the Christian church, under the leadership of the Holy Spirit.  The ascension reminds us that Jesus is not just a person of the past, but also a person of the present — and of the future.  In Acts 1.1-11, we find not only the account of Jesus’ ascension, but also the promise that he will someday return from heaven.

     The symbolic color for Ascension Day is white, symbolizing joy and celebration.

Full announcements here

Announcements May 15

THE 5TH SUNDAY OF EASTER

15 May 2022

Welcome!  We extend a warm welcome to our guests, and invite you to sign the guest book at the back of the sanctuary.  Everyone is invited to remain for a cup of coffee in the Church Hall following the service.

Coming up:

– Sunday, 22 May – Deadline for submissions for the May Newsletter

– Wednesday, 25 May – Meal-in-a-Bowl

– Sunday, 5 June – Communion Sunday

Ukraine – PWS&D is accepting donations toward the effort to provide assistance to refugees fleeing the Russian invasion of Ukraine.  The most urgent needs are for food, water, and shelter.  PWS&D provides assistance through its partners, the ACT Alliance and the Canadian Foodgrains Bank.  Donations can be made through our congregation; just mark your cheque or envelope “PWS&D – Ukraine”.  If you would like your donation to reach PWS&D faster, you can donate online, using your credit card.  Go to www.WeRespond.ca, click on “Ukraine Crisis Appeal” or “Ukraine Crisis: Irina’s Story”; then click on the “Donate Now” button, and follow the prompts.  You can check the website also for periodic updates.

Full announcements here

Announcements May 8

THE 4TH SUNDAY OF EASTER
CHRISTIAN FAMILY SUNDAY
8 May 2022

Welcome! We extend a warm welcome to our guests, and invite you to sign the guest book at the back of the sanctuary. Everyone is invited to remain for a cup of coffee in the Church Hall following the service

This Week in First Church:

  • Tuesday, 7:00 p.m. – Bible study, by Zoom
  • Wednesday, 6:30 p.m. – Finance & Maintenance Committee meeting
    Coming up:
  • Sunday, 15 May, 5:00 p.m. – Spring Dinner
  • Sunday, 22 May – Deadline for submissions for the May Newsletter
  • Sunday, 5 June – Communion Sunday

Full announcements here

Announcements May 1, 2022

THE 3RD SUNDAY OF EASTER

1 May 2022

Welcome!  We extend a warm welcome to our guests, and invite you to sign the guest book at the back of the sanctuary.  The Session decided this week to reinstate our after-service fellowship time in the Church Hall, so everyone is invited to remain for a cup of coffee following the service.

This Week in First Church:

– Tuesday, 7:00 p.m. – Bible study, by Zoom

Coming up:

– Sunday, 15 May, 5:00 p.m. – Spring Dinner

– Sunday, 22 May – Deadline for submissions for the May Newsletter

The Christian Year – We are now in the Season of Easter, the fifth of the six seasons of the Christian Year.  It began on Easter Sunday, and is fifty days in length, including eight Sundays.  The final Sunday of the season is Pentecost, which, this year, happens to fall on the 5th of June.

     Instead of readings from the Old Testament, the Revised Common Lectionary specifies readings from the Acts of the Apostles for this season each year.  The readings from the Letters for this season are mainly from the Book of Revelation this year.  The Gospel readings for the first three Sundays are various accounts of the risen Jesus’ appearances to his disciples.  On the 4th Sunday of Easter, the Gospel reading is always from John Chapter 10, in which Jesus speaks about being the “good shepherd”; and on the 5th, 6th, and 7th Sundays of Easter, the Gospel readings are from the “Supper Discourse” in John Chapters 14-17.  On Pentecost, of course, the readings all have to do with the giving of the Holy Spirit to Jesus’ followers.

     The symbolic color for the Easter Season, as for Easter Sunday itself, is white, signifying joy and celebration.  The color for Pentecost is red.

Full announcements here