Then Jesus went about all the cities and villages, teaching in their synagogues, and proclaiming the good news of the kingdom, and curing every disease and every sickness. Matthew 9:35
On June 18, we will have a Service of Healing during the regular morning worship at 9:30.
I’ve been your interim pastor for nearly nine months; in that time we’ve done a lot of work together. We prayed and ministered and laughed and sometimes cried. We’ve addressed some difficult issues together with honesty and grace.
Now, before we head into summer schedules, it seems good to have a healing service in which we intentionally offer this church to God, seeking the steady healing that Christ can bring. There will also be an opportunity for personal anointing for healing and peace. I have found that this kind of healing ritual, while it doesn’t erase the past, can allow the Spirit’s fresh breath to move among and within us, freeing us for new love and service.
Please join us for prayer and healing this Sunday. I look forward to worshiping with you!
There will be a training program for Bystander Intervention at our church on Thursday, July 13 from 6:30pm to 9:00pm.
Training Active Bystanders (TAB) is a two hour training designed to help participants recognize when they are bystanders, analyze the situation in which they find themselves, and decide on an appropriate action they can take to interfere with interpersonal oppression and bullying as it happens.
Active “bystandership” does not mean aggression but rather helping people in need. The program presumes we can change our communities by encouraging active bystander responses.
Elizabeth and Marion Magill were first introduced to Bystander Training when they took the course through a collaboration of the Shir Tikvah Synagogue, Winchester MA, the Islamic Center of Boston in Wayland, and the South Acton (MA) Congregational Church. They took the Train the Trainer course and have offered the material to their local communities.
During worship we’ll be dedicating Trevor Lewis, who just turned one this past week. Just as in baptism, a dedication is when the congregation of WFC commits to help his parents, Heather and Dean Lewis, raise Trevor into a live of faith, joy and love. It takes a congregation to grow a child up in the knowledge of God’s grace!
We’ll also receive thanks for WFC’s support of COW (Color Our World), a wonderful organization that brings art supplies to people in need. COW recognizes that while people’s bodies need food, their spirits need beauty and creativity; COW provides art materials in developing countries as well as in food pantries right here in Vermont.
After worship, we’ll gather for WFC’s Annual Meeting. Some of that meeting with be very “business-y” – receiving reports, passing the budget, approving a list of leaders for next year. We’ll also be amending church policies and we’ll receive updates from the Search Committee and about the upcoming steeple repairs. This might not sound very celebratory … but I believe that an annual meeting is an opportunity to commit ourselves to all that God has in store for us in the future: we dedicate our monies, our building, our meetings, and our ministry together. We’ll have fun, even in the midst of the voting.
Come join the celebrations! Come be part of what God’s creating, right here in Williston.
This Sunday, June 4, is Pentecost: the birthday of the Christian church! During worship we’ll tell again the story of how the Holy Spirit came upon the disciples, 50 days after Jesus’ resurrection, with a rush of wind and appearing as flames on their heads. We’ll hear again how they spoke the Gospel in many tongues, and how the Good News began to spread to the people and the world around them.
Wear red to worship this Sunday! We’ll show the Spirit’s fire as we gather together.
And do some reflecting: when have you been “on fire”? When have you been filled with a holy energy for a project or a cause that brings life to the world? When have you burned with gratitude for a great happening in your life, or for the ordinary joys of daily living? When has something been kindled in your spirit that’s been an extension of the Spirit – something of God, something that’s undeniably holy, something that you did not create yourself but were simply blessed with? That’s a kind of Pentecost, too: a visitation from the Spirit of Life and Love. It’s one way God continues to move in the world.
May the Spirit’s blessing and energy and joy be yours, this Pentecost and always