March News & Announcements

Upcoming

Ecumenical Lenten Renewal ~ Reflection & Ritual ~ 6:30- 8 pm
Tuesday March 14th: Our Lady of the Valley Roman Catholic Church, reflecting on Jesus’ command “As I have done, so you must do.”
Thursday, March 16th: St. Mark’s Lutheran Church, focus on healing of the Spirit of God, include prayer and ritual for healing of past wounds and sins.
Peter Chepaitus and Sr. Anna Tantsits of Bethany Ministries.

Nursery meeting
We need some help with the nursery so we are having a meeting: March 23rd, after worship in the nursery. We’ll be talking about everything from toys to staffing.

Fellowship
Save the date of March 31 for our Second Annual Appreciation Dinner.  Check The Table for more information.

Wednesday, April 5th: We are hosting a NET Dinner (Neighbors Eating Together), 5-6:30 pm. Come and eat with neighbors and meet new neighbors.

Holy Week
April 13th: Maundy Thursday service, 7 pm. Good Friday, communinity stations of the cross walk, beginning at Reformed church and walking to Methodist church, stopping for the stations, 12 pm. Easter dawn service, 6 am on the hill on Rapp Road. MRC worship at 11 am.

FaithWalking 101 Retreat
FaithWalking is a process of spiritual formation and deepening practices for missional living. The first course (101) is set up as a 2 day retreat format. There are optional courses to continue the learning after 101. For more information https://www.faithwalking.us

Faithwalking 101 is being offered in Schoharie, May 6 & 7, Quality Inn & Suites. Cost: $225 (scholarships available). Look for more information on The Table.

Regular & Ongoing
Bible Study Thursday: 3:30-4:30 p.m. at Marian Lynes’ house
Operation Christmas Child
Participating in OCC is one way in which we are living out our mission of demonstrating the transformative message of Jesus.  This year our gift-filled shoeboxes are being used by church leaders in Mexico, Dominican Republic, Peru, Mali, and Ghana to introduce children to the love of Jesus.  Reports from the field inform us that children whose lives are changed as a result of knowing Jesus are eager to share their knowledge of the Savior with family members and friends.  As children and their families change in their ways of being, whole communities are impacted!

Please continue to support the work of OCC through prayer.

• for children and their families to be transformed by  the love of Jesus

• for the safety and health of those who distribute shoeboxes and disciple children

• for shoebox packers –  that they will grow as disciples through their service

MRC is now collecting hygiene items for our 2017 packing party.  A box is located in the foyer for your contribution of toothbrushes, soap, washcloths, and combs.  THANK YOU!

 As the body of Christ the mission of Middleburgh Reformed Church is to demonstrate the transformative message of Jesus.
Our vision is to grow as disciples through prayer, worship education and service.

February News & Announcements

Sign up for committees will continue until 2/12, in the foyer.
Upcoming
Wednesday, February 1st: We are hosting a NET Dinner (Neighbors Eating Together), 5-6:30 pm. Come and eat with neighbors and meet new neighbors.
Consistory Meeting, Thursday 8th, 7 pm

Fellowship
Save the date of March 31 for our Second Annual Appreciation Dinner.  This year’s guests will be the employees and officials of the Village and Town of Middleburgh.  Please help the fellowship committee plan for the event by indicating by March 3 that you will attend.  (See the reservation sheet in the foyer.)

March 1st, Ash Wednesday (the beginning of Lent). Lent begins the 40 day preparation before Easter  (not counting Sundays). Traditionally Christians have engaged the time by taking up practices to remember their need for forgiveness and the work of Christ. Practices such as fasting and making a point of giving money away. This year durning Lent (starting a few weeks before) the sermons will be on the theme of the commonly known as “7 Deadly Sins,” or capital sins. The list was developed as a diagnosis tool for a spiritual checkup.

Ash Wednesday Ecumenical Service, 6 pm. The theme is “Room for Lent, Resting and Receiving” at the Middleburgh United Methodist Church Parsonage. All are welcome.

Regular & Ongoing 
Bible Study Thursday: 3:30-4:30 p.m. at Marian Lynes’ house

Operation Christmas Child
Shoebox gifts that we packed last fall are destined for distribution in Ghana, Mali, Mexico, Dominican Republic, and Mexico.  Some may have already reached the hands of the children chosen to receive them.  Can you imagine the smiles, laughter, and shouts of glee as the children discover each of their treasures?

Pastors and other church leaders use OCC shoeboxes as a tool for evangelism.  Pray for these men and women who are devoted to sharing the Gospel with the young people of their countries.  Pray also for the shoebox recipients and their families.  May the seeds that are planted produce much fruit for the Kingdom!

Our goal for 2017 is to bless 300 children with a shoebox gift!  During the month of February we will be collecting toothbrushes for them.  (Multi-packs are desirable.)  There is a basket in the foyer for your contributions. Other gifts that will be needed for our packing party include pencils, pencil sharpeners, crayons, soap, washcloths, combs, and small stuffed animals.  Look for bargains while you are shopping!  Mary Lou will be happy to store the gifts you purchase.

Thank you for supporting Operation Christmas Child!

Mission & Vision Statement
As a way to clarify our life together and to be more intentional about being on mission we have been working on a statement that reflects who we are and want to be. This is a new revision after conversations and feedback. Thank you! We welcome hearing from you what you think. The next step is to develop particular and practical ways to live this out. The Statement Team: Joel Bramer, Sarah Bramer, Mary Lou Ryan, Jonathon Meredith, Pastor Jeff Kelley.

As the body of Christ the mission of Middleburgh Reformed Church is to demonstrate the transformative message of Jesus.
Our vision is to grow as disciples through prayer, worship education and service.

Consistory
Elders: Susan Pendergast, Kim Smith, Joan Youmans. Deacons: Mary Lou Ryan. If you are in need of prayer or a visit, feel free to an elder or deacon as well as Pastor Jeff. If you, or someone you know, have a material need we may be able to help through our Benevolence Fund.

Pastor Jeff Kelley: jeffa.kelley (at) gmail.com

January News & Announcements

Upcoming Events
Financial Peace University
FPU is a course on personal financial management by Dave Ramsey. Using Biblical principles and offering practical guidance, learn to get debt free and plan for the future. For more information see: http://www.daveramsey.com/fpu/
It will run January 5th- March 2nd, Thursdays, 6:30 pm. (about $93). Ron Barnes facilitating, contact him for more information.  If you have already taken the course, you are allowed to retake it again for free!

January 1st: Happy New Year. No Christian Education. Worship at 11 am.

January 8th: Christian Education, 9:45 am, Worship, 11 am. Scripture: Hebrews 2:5-18;  Celebrating the Lord’s Supper.
Annual Congregational Meeting & Lunch, following worship Everyone is invited  to join us for lunch and hear about the life of the church and plans for ministry in the coming year. To help out with lunch see the sign up sheet in the foyer.

January 14th, Saturday, 10 am-11:30 am in the Fellowship Hall: Forum on Human Sexuality, with particular questions around same-sex marriage.. The state has legalized it, the Reformed Church in America is in the process of changing our Order to deal with it, it’s all over the media- and there are questions. What does Scripture say about our sexuality? What has the church taught and believed about being made in God’s image? Why are many changing their minds now about marriage and sex? Is love is love, really love?

January 15th: No Christian Education. Worship 11 am. Scripture: Galatians 3:23-29, One in Christ

Regular & Ongoing
Bible Study Thursday: 3:30-4:30 p.m. at Marian Lynes’ house

Operation Christmas Child: Check the map in the fellowship hall to see where our 2016 shoeboxes are headed!  Pray for the children in those countries who will receive our gifts and for those who will conduct the distributions. Please save your Christmas cards with religious pictures or natural scenes for our 2017 packing party.  A basket will be placed in the foyer where you may leave your cards.  Thank you!

Church Membership: Local church membership is a reflection of the spiritual reality of belonging in Christ through baptism.  Sharing life with other Christians is an indispensable feature of being a Christian. If you are not a member of MRC we invite you to consider it.  In membership the congregation commits to you and your well-being, as well as you doing the same for us. Contact Pastor Jeff if you are interested in knowing more or learning what it would require to become a member.

December News & Announcements

The web version of the paper version. Subscribe to the weekly updates as well on the front page.

Week of November 27th
Sunday: First Sunday of Advent. No Christian Education
Worship, 11 am. Scripture: Hosea 3, Advent series: Why Jesus for Christmas?, #1,
Thursday: Bible Study, 3:30-4:30 pm., at Marian Lynes’ house. Elders Meeting, 7 pm
Saturday: 9-10:30 am Vision Statement meeting- come share and interact with the proposed statement with the team. for more information- see backside. ‘

Week of December 4th
Second Sunday of Advent.
Christian Education for students PreK-12th grade, 9:30 am;
Worship, 11 am. Led by Preaching Elder Kit Jackson. (Pastor Jeff away Sunday)
Thursday: Bible Study (see above), Consistory Meeting, 7 pm.

Week of December 11th
Third Sunday of Advent
Christian Education for students PreK-12th grade, 9:30 am; Worship, 11 am. Scripture: Why Jesus of Nazareth for Christmas, #2?,  Celebrating the Lord’s Supper
Thursday: Bible Study (see above)

Week of December 18th
Fourth Sunday of Advent: Christian Education for student PreK-12th, 9:30 am; Worship, 11 am. Sunday School Program
Thursday: Bible Study (see above)
Saturday: Christmas Eve candlelight service, 7 pm.

Week of December 25th
Sunday, Christmas! Worship 11 am. coffee and scones starting at 10:30 am in the foyer  and after the service.
(Pastor Jeff will be in vacation 12/26-1/1)

Get connected
Church directory– new directory available beginning December 4th.
News and Announcements- How do you like your information? The paper version runs the risk of a paper cut. A weekly email update will greet you Tuesdays. It includes prayer requests and odd things along with the announcements. Sign up at the website.  And if you missed anything, the website holds it all.

Annual Congregational Meeting & Lunch January 8th following worship Everyone welcome to come and hear about the life of the church and plans for ministry. Nominations for Elder and Deacon terms are open until December 4th. Description, details, and nomination box are on the foyer table.

January 14th: Forum on human sexuality, with particular questions around same-sex marriage. 10 am-11:30 am in the Fellowship Hall. The state has legalized it, the Reformed Church in America is in the process of changing our Order to deal with it, it’s all over the media- and we have questions. What does Scripture say about it? What has the church taught? Why are many changing their minds now? Is love is love really love? come open ready to listen and to share.

Financial Peace University
A recent report by the FDIC said that nearly 50% of American households do not have enough savings to pay $400 in unexpected expenses. But that doesn’t have to be you.
FPU is a course on personal financial management by Dave Ramsey. Using Biblical principles and practical guidance, learn to get debt free and plan for the future. For more information see: http://www.daveramsey.com/fpu/
It will run January 5th- March 2nd, Thursdays, 6:30 pm. ($93). Ron Barnes facilitating, contact him for more information.  If you have already taken the course, you are allowed to retake it again for free!

Vision Statement Processhelp us craft the statement.
The full statement is on The Table in the foyer. Your feedback on the draft can be shared in a number of ways:

  • Write your thoughts down. A box will be provided in the foyer for your comments. There is also a worksheet available that asks questions and offers a guide about thinking through it.
  • Talk about it: a conversation over coffee will be held on Saturday, December 3rd at 9:00
  • Speak personally to a member of the group, who are willing and eager to listen.

(The group is Joel and Sarah Bramer, Mary Lou Ryan, Jonathan Meredith, and Pastor Jeff)

We look forward to hearing from you and to discover where how God is calling us to love him and our neighbors.

November News & Announcements

Week of October 30th
Sunday: Christian Education for students PreK-12th grade;
Worship, 11 am. Scripture: 1 Corinthians 13, Essentials: Love,
Operation Christmas Child Packing Party & lunch. Everyone is welcome to help and eat!
Monday: Happy Reformation Day! Celebrate by knocking on doors, just like Martin Luther. Tuesday: All Saints Day
Pastor Jeff (and the Ridder Team) will be away for a Ridder retreat Thursday (Friday)-Saturday.

Week of November 6th
Sunday: Daylight savings time ends. Christian Education for students PreK-12th grade, 9:30 am; Worship, 11 am. Scripture: 1 Corinthians 14, Essentials: Worshiping Together,  Celebrating the Lord’s Supper
Thursday: Bible Study, 3:30-4:30 pm., Consistory Meeting, 7 pm.
Saturday: Ham Supper

Week of November 13th
Sunday: No Christian Education
Worship, 11 am. Scripture: 1 Corinthians 16:1-4, Essentials: Sharing Life Together

Week of November 20th
Sunday: Christian Education for student PreK-12th, 9:30 am;
Worship, 11 am. Christ the King Sunday.
Wednesday: Community Thanksgiving Eve Service at Our Lady of the Valley Roman Catholic church, 7 pm.
Thursday: Thanksgiving

Week of November 27th
Sunday: Christian Education for student PreK-12th, 9:30 am;
Worship: First Sunday in Advent, Hosea 3

Annual Congregational Meeting & Lunch: January 8th 

Get connected
Church directory– Do you have a church directory? Is your information up to date? Do you need to be added? To make a change fill out a form and return them to the basket in the foyer by 11/27. The 2017 edition will be available 12/4.

News and Announcements- How do you like your information? The paper version for a tactile experience, weekly email updates (sign up at the website), and the website holds it all.

Thanksgiving Baskets for the Community
The Joshua Project is putting together 100 thanksgiving baskets for folks who might need them. The turkeys are being provided for. The churches in the community are being asked to provide the non-perishable items to complete the meal: canned green beans, corn, carrot, cranberry sauce, olives?, box stuffing mix, instant potatoes, canned sweet potatoes, sweet bread mix, turkey gravy. Items will be collected until Sunday, November 6th.

Vision Statement Processhelp us craft this statement. 

At the Middleburgh Reformed Church our mission is to live as a saved people. 

Our vision for the next 3-5 years is that we will grow as disciples by increasing our focus on Gospel-centered prayer, worship, education, and service.

Now, it’s time for all of us to begin thinking about this draft and sharing our thoughts. We want to know what you think. Is it clear? Is it compelling to you? Do you share in this vision?  As we move through this process, there will be further work done on these statements. They are not finalized. Details will be added about HOW we are going to live into this vision. Your suggestions and input are incredibly valuable and vital to this process.

Your feedback on the draft can be shared in a number of ways:

– Write your thoughts down. A box will be provided in the foyer for your comments. There is also a worksheet available.

– Talk about it in a group setting, a conversation over coffee will be held on Saturday, December 3rd at 9:00 am.

– Speak personally to a member of the group, who are willing and eager to listen.

(The group is Joel and Sarah Bramer, Mary Lou Ryan, Jonathan Meredith, and Pastor Jeff)

We look forward to hearing from you and we are excited to see where God leads us all in this endeavor.

 

April News & Announcement Sheet

 Ridder Team Sharing- Discovery of Discipleship. April 1st, 6:30-7:30pm. The Ridder Team is sharing about discipleship, what it looks like and how we engage with it.

The MRC Property Committee invites everyone in our church family to join us for spring clean-up of our church property.  If you like group participation, please come on Saturday, April 9 and/or April 16 from 9 AM to noon.  Individuals may stop in anytime to do things on the spring
clean-up list.

  •  * Prepare lawn areas for the mowing season
  •  * Tidy up gardens and the apron around the buildings
  •  * Wash windows in the foyer and fellowship hall
  •  * Organize and sanitize the nursery
  •  * Other non-routine cleaning as needed

** Special yard work to clean up tree on the front lawn. Brush can be piled in the cone area by the dumpster.

*******   Many hands make light work.    **********
Thank you to all who helped clean up the tree in the front yard.

April Neighbors Eating Together (NET Dinners)
6th: Reformed Church
13:  Our Lady of the Valley
20: Middleburgh Untied Methodist Church
27: Pot Luck at MRC

Bible Study Thursday: 3:30-4:30 p.m. at Marian Lynes’ house, will resume April 14th.

Elders Meeting April 7th, 7 pm.
Consistory Meeting, April 14th, 7 pm.

Sunday Morning Youth grades 7-12, are you interested in meeting  9:30-10:45 a.m.?Sundays: April 10, 17, May 1, 8, 15, 22 for food, conversation, & prayer. Let pastor Jeff know-

Camp Fowler- Registration for Camp Fowler is open! the Table has the summer schedule- or find it online: www.campfowler.org.

Billy Brown Scholarship Fund is available for campers going to any Christian camp they choose. Application forms are on the table in the foyer. submissions are due May 29th.

Food Pantry
Opportunities await for those who are feeling called to serve their neighbors who are in need of food.  See Russ Ryan to indicate your interest in being a full-time or substitute food pantry volunteer. Hours of operation are: Wednesday4:00-6:00 p.m. Saturday 9:00-11:00 a.m.

Your donations of non-perishable food are always appreciated.  Especially needed at this time are canned or dried fruits.

Operation Christmas Child  We recently received notification that some of our 2015 shoeboxes are being distributed in Colombia.  Several weeks ago, we had learned that the destination of others of our gifts was Ghana.  We serve a generous God who has blessed us so much that we have been able to bless children on two continents through Operation Christmas Child!  Thank you for supporting this outreach with your resources and your prayers.

Gifts are already being purchased, sorted, counted, and stored for our 2016 packing party.  The suggested gift to purchase in April is soap.  Also needed for our packing party will be washcloths, toothpaste (expiration date no earlier than August 2017), pencils, crayons, and small stuffed animals.

Weekly Update & Prayer List: The weekly news bulletin includes news and new prayer requests.  To sign up go to our website (www.middleburghreformed.org) and on the front page is a form to add your email. Don’t worry If you don’t do email, the Sunday bulletin and monthly News & Announcement sheets contains the same information. Though there are sometimes extra goodies included.

Directory- Copies of the directory are on the table in the foyer. If you have any updates or would like to be added, let Pastor Jeff know.

Nursery helpers needed- If you would like to help attend the nursery, sign up in the foyer. The story and activity will be set up for you- all you have to do is read and help the kids!

Help Clean the Sanctuary– there are plenty of months available to clean the sanctuary. List of tasks are inside the sanctuary closet door. Sign up in the foyer.

March News & Announcements


Holy Week Worship Services 

March 20-27

20th- Palm Sunday

24th- Maundy Thursday: This service observes the night when Jesus ate with the disciples before he was crucified and he instructed them to remember the meaning of his death through bread and wine. This service will include celebrating the Lord’s Supper together.

25th- Good Friday: Community Service, 8 pm (see below)

27th- Easter

Sunrise Service: 6:45 am, with a brunch to follow at St. Mark’s Lutheran church. Directions to the service will be on the Table.

Worship Service: 11 am.

–   –   –

Invitation from Russ-
An Ecumenical Good Friday Service will be held again this year with the local clergy and an Ecumenical Choir.  Rehearsals for the choir will be Sunday afternoons from 2 – 4 at the Reformed Church.  The rehearsals will start February 21st. The past 3 years wonderful singers have attended and produced some excellent musical moments.  However, more singers are needed. This is and excellent opportunity to come work together for only 5 weeks. If you have any questions call Russ at 827-4093.

Ridder Team Sharing
Discovery of Discipleship March 4th, 6:30-7:30pm. The Ridder Team is sharing about discipleship, what it looks like and how we engage with it.

Weekly Update & Prayer List

The weekly news bulletin includes news and new prayer requests.  To sign up go to our website (www.middleburghreformed.org) and on the front page is a form to add your email. Don’t worry If you don’t do email, the Sunday bulletin and monthly News & Announcement sheets contains the same information. Though there are sometimes extra goodies included.

March Neighbors Eating Together (NET Dinners)
2nd: Reformed Church
09:  Our Lady of the Valley
16: Middleburgh Untied Methodist Church
23: No Dinner
30: Pot Luck at Our Lady of the Valley

Bible Study Thursday: 3:30-4:30 p.m. at Marian Lynes’ house, studying the book of 1 Peter. See Pastor Jeff for a study guide.

Directory- Copies of the directory are on the table in the foyer. If you have any updates or would like to be added, let Pastor Jeff know.

Nursery helpers needed- If you would like to help attend the nursery, sign up in the foyer. The story and activity will be set up for you- all you have to do is read and help the kids!

Help Clean the Sanctuary– there are plenty of months available to clean the sanctuary. Sign up in the foyer.

Camp Fowler- Registration for Camp Fowler is open! the Table has the summer schedule- or find it online: www.campfowler.org.

And Billy Brown Scholarship Fund is available for campers going to any Christian camp they choose.  Application forms are also on the table in the foyer. Applications are due May 29th.

Operation Christmas Child
    Thank you to everyone who has purchased gifts for our 2016 shoeboxes or donated Christmas cards!  The suggested gift to purchase in March is washcloths.  Please continue to lift up in prayer the children who are now receiving shoeboxes and the leadership teams in the countries of distribution.  Pray also for the children who will be guided through The Greatest Journey, the discipleship course that follows shoebox distributions.

For we are God’s handiwork, created in Jesus Christ to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.  Ephesians 2:10

Food Pantry

See Russ Ryan if you would like to know about opportunities to serve in this ministry to those in need in our community.  Donations of non-perishable food are always welcome.  Thank you for your support.

February News & Announcements Sheet

Weekly Update & Prayer List- The weekly news bulletin is operational. It includes  To sign up go to the front page of the  website add your email. Don’t worry If you don’t do email. The Sunday bulletin and monthly News & Announcement sheets contains the same information.

Youth Group: Sundays @ 6 to the 7:30 pm.  food. games. and a conversation about faith .

Nursery: Children are encouraged to stay in the service -even if they are restless. There are activity bags in the back to help. If a small child or infant has had enough, the nursery is available. It is staffed after the 2nd hymn.

Nursery helpers needed- If you would like to help attend the nursery, sign up in the foyer. The story and activity will be set up for you- all you have to do is read and help the kids!

February Neighbors Eating Together (NET) Dinners 

3rd: Reformed Church
10th:  Our Lady of the Valley
17th: Middleburgh Untied Methodist Church
24th: Community Pot Luck @ Reformed Church

Bible Study Thursday: 3:30-4:30 p.m. at Marian Lynes’ house, studying the book of 1 Peter. See Pastor Jeff for a study guide.

Operation Christmas Child
Thank you to everyone who saved or purchased Christmas cards for our 2016 shoeboxes.  We will be able to bless each of our shoebox recipients with a beautiful picture to hang in his/her home to remind the whole family of God’s love!

We have received word that our 2015 shoeboxes have been sent to Ghana for distribution to children there.  Please keep these children and their families in your prayers.  Pray also that the more than 11 million shoeboxes collected will make their way through customs without problems in the many countries of distribution.  Pray for all who are responsible for the transportation and distribution of the gifts.  Pray for God’s purposes for each shoebox to be fulfilled.

The suggested gift to purchase in February is small stuffed animals.  A good time to shop for a bargain will be the day after Valentine’s Day!

Do not neglect to do good and to share what you have, for such sacrifices are pleasing to God.  Hebrews 13:16

Food Pantry
If your New Year’s resolution is to spend more time serving others, please consider taking a role as a food pantry volunteer.  There are openings for full-time and substitute volunteers.  See Russ Ryan for more information.

Your donation of non-perishable food is always welcome.  Especially needed this month are canned vegetables.  THANK YOU for supporting the food pantry ministry.

Camp Fowler- Registration for Camp Fowler is open! the Table has the summer schedule- or find it online: www.campfowler.org.

Billy Brown scholarship fund is available for our campers.  Application forms are also on the table in the foyer.

a note from Pastor Jeff: Thank you for the Christmas gift. I am grateful and humbled by your thought and generosity. I am also honored to be called your pastor and our entire family feels privileged for your care and being a part of your family. thank you. , P.Jeff