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Richmond Congregational Church
United Church of Christ

Rev. Katelyn Macrae, Pastor • 20 Church St. • P.O. Box 302 • Richmond VT, 05477

(802) 434-2053 • Email: church@rccucc.org • Facebook: www.facebook.com/rccucc

Sunday Worship September-June: 10:00 AM with Sunday School and Nursery care
 July & August: 9:00 AM with special activities for children

Church office hours: Tuesday-Thursday, 8:30am - 3:00pm

 

Open and Affirming •  All are Welcome

November 2014 Reflections

Reflections From the Pastor

Dear Friends in Christ:

It’s that time of year again when the local pharmacies have banners up advertising "Get Your Flu Shot." Last week I got my flu shot. I try to take such health precautions for myself as well as for the people I interact with. The combination of the flu shot and hearing about the Ebola crisis in the news caused me to wonder whether fear is just as contagious as the germs that actually cause such diseases. And if this is the case, what can we do to inoculate ourselves and build up a resistance to such fear?

As a child, my parents taught me to say "Bless You" when someone sneezes. It has become an automatic response. But, when I take a step back and think about it, I realize how powerful an act this actually is. Bless is a verb. It means to sanctify, consecrate, approve, or exalt. Blessing is a way of setting things apart as holy, as the stuff of God!

So how can a sneeze, or a sneezer, become the stuff of God? Well that’s the point now isn’t it! Everything is the stuff of God; we just don’t always acknowledge or treat it as such. Our Stewardship theme this year is "Blessed to Be a Blessing." The theme draws from Genesis 12:3b "…all peoples on earth will be blessed through you."

In November, we will have several opportunities to celebrate the blessings of this faith community and engage in communal acts of blessing.

• Sunday, November 2 - All Saints Day. Bring a picture or a memento to worship of loved ones who have died. Together we will remember these saints who have blessed us with their presence.

• Friday, November 7 - Stained Glass Window Spaghetti Supper at the Friday Food Affair. Supper is served from 5:00-7:00 PM in the Fellowship Hall. At 7:00 PM we will gather in the Sanctuary and help bless the refurbished stained glass windows.

• Sunday, November 9 – Service of Installation. Join with delegates from the Champlain Association and the Vermont Conference United Church of Christ as we covenant together in ministry. An Ecclesiastical Council will be held at 3:00 PM. I will present a brief talk and answer questions from delegates of the Champlain Association. At 4:00 PM we will gather for the Service of Installation where I will be officially installed as the Pastor of Richmond Congregational Church. Rev. Jared Hamilton from the United Church of Hinesburg will preach. A reception follows the service.

• Sunday, November 16 - Stewardship Sunday. The RCC youth will lead us in this intergenerational worship service where we will celebrate all of the blessings that God has bestowed upon us. Members and friends will present their pledge cards of treasure, time and talent. After worship we will have an Ice Cream Social!

• Sunday, November 23 – Ecumenical Thanksgiving Service at Williston Federated Church at 4:00 PM. Join with Williston Federated Church, Holy Rosary and Immaculate Heart of Mary for this annual Thanksgiving tradition, complete with joint choirs! A light soup supper served following the service.

• Sunday, November 30 – Caitlin Purinton, a Member in Discernment for ministry, will preach and lead worship. Caitlin grew up at RCC, and it will be wonderful to have her return as a worship leader. This is also the first Sunday of Advent and we will light the candle for peace.

In the coming weeks I pray that we may be agents of blessing within the congregation as well as out in the community. May we offer blessings wherever we go, and with whomever we meet. As we bless others, may we find our joy increasing and our fear diminishing. Indeed, we are blessed to be a blessing!

See you in church,

Katelyn