From the Pastor:
At the Wednesday Morning clergy Bible Study this week, one of the pastors encouraged us to see the movie "Chocolat" because it was a wonderful movie about transformation. She said that the book was better than the movie as it pointed out the connection to Lent more strongly than the movie does. For many, Lent is a time of fasting and disciplines of denial. If the disciplines of introspection and repentance lead to the transformation of the soul in its journey to Easter, then they are useful, indeed. If they are merely a hardship to be endured as a test of our own strength and ability to put up with having no chocolate or bread or whatever, then the discipline can be empty.
Lent is to be a journey to the cross and then to the empty tomb. It is a time to remember what Jesus of Nazareth did and what he suffered and how he died. But it is also a time of walking through our own valleys with the Risen Lord. Can we trust our souls to the Lord enough to bear whatever crosses are in our own lives with a grace and humor of being blessed and loved unconditionally?
We hope you will join us at Oldtown during Lent and avail yourselves of the many opportunities for worship and study. The Ash Wednesday Service begins our journey. During the Sundays of Lent the young children will be engaged in a Communion Education Series. Adults are encouraged to pick up a commuter tape each Sunday as part of the Lenten Adult Education Series. The Church School is encouraging us to "Fill the Ark" as a mission discipline for Heifer Project. The handchime rehearsals are on Tuesday nights. New ringers are always welcome. There are many more ways that you can be nourished spiritually in this time of Lent. May your journey be blessed with the renewal of your mind, heart and soul!
Only by grace,
Welcome to the Mission Corner:
Dedicated to Serving Christ
The Missions Committee officers for the year 2001 are as follows: Lori Mobley, Chairperson; Marcia Brinson, Treasurer; Christine Pandozzi, Secretary; Lynne Sias, Food Donation Coordinator; Nora Roesser, Clothing Donation Coordinator; and Lori Brown, Correspondence.
We have committed to sponsoring three soup kitchens this coming year: April 14th at the Centenary Methodist Church in Attleboro and June 29th and November 30th at the Seekonk Baptist Church. Volunteers are always welcome, whether for meal preparation, serving the meal or cleaning up! Please keep these dates in mind and speak to a member of the Missions Committee if you can help.
The Missions Committee will again be accepting food donations year-round. The Missions Basket will now be located in the narthex as you enter the church from the ramp. Any non-perishable food items and paper goods such as paper towels, diapers and napkins will be delivered to the North Attleboro Food Pantry. If you wish to help with a monetary donation, please see a Missions Committee member and we will see that your gift is forwarded to the Food 'n' Friends organization to help the greatest number of people.
Nora will be coordinating the collection of coats and boots; please speak to her regarding any clothing donations.
We would also like to encourage everyone's participation in the Sunday School's Lenten Missions Program to benefit the Heifer Project. Fill the Ark with your spare change and help needy farmers both in the USA and abroad to purchase animals.
Many thanks to the generous folks at Oldtown. On Souper Bowl Sunday our little congregation raised $185.00 for the Attleboro Food 'n Friends Soup Kitchens!!!
For the Missions Committee
The transition into the new year is nearly complete. I believe that we have a new chairperson of the trustees, but she has not been officially voted to her post yet. I'm sure that you will all be looking forward to a better-written report in each newsletter. I'm sure it will be improved.
The rider for the service times and pastors name was added to the sign and blends nicely with the original design.
The end classroom behind the kitchen, which has had all sorts of temporary uses, has found a more permanent function. The Historian (affectionately known as Carolyn Chretien) has commandeered it for storage of the church documents and treasures so that they may be more accessible to all. There are quite a few things of interest. It is going to require some work to organize it all and I know Carolyn doesn't mind company.
We are checking out ideas for fund raisers and have heard one that seems fun and a little bit out of our normal routine. How does an antique appraisal event similar to the "Roadshow" on TV sound? Give a trustee your opinion and any ideas you may have for actually making it work.
The Roast Pork and Sauerkraut Supper will be held March 10th. See Dan to sign up for the fun that is had in serving others.
Former Trustee Chairman
New Members Class
A New Members Class will be held after Worship on April 1st. New Members will be received at the 10 am worship on April 29. Please speak to pastor Katrina or a deacon if you are interested in becoming a full member of the church.
DID YOU KNOW ???
I'm happy to report that I was able to go to the Suitcase Seminars in Duxbury on Feb.3rd. They were held at the Pilgrim Church there and just seeing that old church, learning their history, and seeing what they've done by adding on several times was worth the trip in itself! I attended the one for Historians, Archivists and Clerks that was conducted by Rev. Dr. Harold Worthley. He's the Librarian/Executive Secretary and Archivist of the Congregational Christian Historical Society Congregational Library in Boston. We learned about the different types of church records, how to arrange and describe them and how to preserve the same plus memorabilia. Very, very interesting and I learned a lot!
On that same note of old things...I want you to look around your house and see if you happen to have anything pertaining to the church, parsonage, school house or Oldtown in general. Somehow we all stash away little tidbits that might have meaning to someone many years from now. I just had a letter given to me recently concerning our bell and when and how it became electrified. So maybe you'll come up with a treasure...who knows! Rev. Worthley told the story of a local minister calling on an elderly member of his church and as he was leaving she gave him a box that she thought he might like to have and lo and behold it contained the deed to their church!!
The Board of Trustees has decided to provide the Clerk and Treasurer with space to store some of their records. Our safe at the back of the church is chock-a-block full and we need fire proof space as well as filing cabinets to keep everything in one spot. So we are in the process of turning one of the downstairs rooms into a record room! More about this later.
The pictures of some of our old ministers/deacons, which were leaning against the rear wall of the sanctuary, have been hung near the tilt-top table. That table was owned by Rev. Habijah Weld and he and his bride were said to have eaten their wedding breakfast on it. It dates back to the early 1700's.
The pictures that Darnell Horman donated to the church have also been hung in Maxcy Hall where everyone can enjoy them.
Just a reminder that the third grade tours will be starting on March 6 and will continue until June almost every Tuesday and Thursday at 12:25. They last about 45 minutes and if anyone would like to learn more about our beginnings please feel free to come on down and join us. If you think you might like to help out with these tours, we'd be glad to take you up on your offer.
Odds and Ends
The silk flower arrangement in the basket on the altar is due to an overage that we had in the Christmas plant fund, so thanks to you all for the few extra dollars we spent on it.
Are you keeping busy on these cold evenings?? Anyone who is looking for yarn for projects for the Fall Fair can find two big boxes of assorted yarn in the middle office space...just ask and we will be happy to get it for you. The fair will be here before we know it.
Please keep saving your empty plastic containers for storage of leftover food after the suppers. We need pint size and up so save those Cool Whip, margarine tubs (large size), ice cream, etc. containers. Leave them in a bag in the back hall and we will see that they get downstairs to the kitchen.
Baptisms are scheduled for May 20 and June 3. Please speak to Pastor Katrina if you would like to be included or have your child baptized on either of those dates.
Services on Tape
We record our Sunday Services, so those who could not attend can share in our worship. Call the church office at 695-1713 if you'd like to borrow a tape.
The Deaconís Corner
What a joy to be a Deacon of the First Congregational Church! Our meetings have been extremely upbeat with so many ideas to enrich our worship services and so many exciting things happening here at Oldtown.
At the February meeting we discussed visitations, especially on Communion Sunday to our shut-ins. If you know of anyone who would like to have a visit by our Deacons, and receive Communion, please let any one of us know and we will schedule a visit for communion Sunday after Church. This is a wonderful time for sharing and caring for our members who are not able to be with us on Sunday morning.
There are several Suitcase Seminars coming up on March 3rd, in Paxton, that some of our members have signed up for. If anyone would like to avail themselves of any of these seminars see Pastor Katrina. You will find information about these groups and topics that are available on the bulletin board in Maxcy Hall. Car pooling is available.
We discussed an Adult Education Series to be done during the Lenten Season with a wrap up time for discussion on April 5th. Those who participated in last years Lenten Adult Series enjoyed them immensely.
An Ash Wednesday Service is scheduled for February 28th at 7 pm, as well as the very moving Service of Tenebrae on Maundy Thursday April 12th.
Pastor Katrina will be working on understanding the meaning of communion with our Kindergartners through the 3rd grade. It was voted by this Board to hold the Service of Holy Communion on April 8th, Palm Sunday, at which time the Young People will take part in this Service of Communion.
Sunday, April 29th, has been set aside for the reception of new members. Anyone wishing to become members should speak with Pastor Katrina. Prospective members will meet after Church on April 1st, at which time they will receive information regarding the Congregational Church, and what it means to be a member.
Last but not the least we have a need for a few more people to serve on the Board of Deacons. If you are so inclined please speak to any of your Deacons, Ed Clavette, your Moderator, or Pastor Katrina.
Approximately three years ago we adopted the slogan "We are Growing in The Spirit," complete with song, banner and leaflets. My Dear fellow Parishioners today we are seeing the fruits of this Growth. We are truly growing in the spirit of Love, Caring and Fellowship. To some we are known as the Praying Church.
Through Christ's Love and Goodness,
Judy Harrop--Vice Chairman
Board of Deacons
From Our Conference
"Making Good Marriages Better"
Mar. 23-25. For couples. Cost: $300.
"Spirituality 101: I'd Love To Go ButÖ"
Mar. 30-31. For women. Cost: $90.
Mar. 30-Apr. 1. For men. Cost: $150.
UCC Day at HPI for Junior Highs
Come to Overlook Farm on Sat. June 2
Cost: $15. See bulletin Board for Registration
Did you know that Kelly Thibeault is enrolled in the
EEYM program offered by the Mass. Conf., UCC?
Ask her about it! It's great, and so is she.
The following is a thank you note from Dot Morel for the dish garden given to her in thanks for many years of service to church as Treasurer:
Dear church family,
I want to thank all of you, not just for what you did, which was wonderful, but for the warmth and the caring you put into it. You're all very special people. Thanks for making me feel special, too.
February was an exciting month for us. It was a month of planning, preparing and trying new things. It was also a month of smiles, laughs and lots of learning. We pulled off our first Muffin Moment and it was a great success. Thank you all for your overwhelming support. We raised $35.00 for Ravi, our Compassion Child, pretty miraculous considering we only had 24 muffins to sell. We also had a great time at our first Mardi Gras party. We played Lenten Bingo, made Mardi Gras necklaces, shared delicious cake and had lots of fun family fellowship.
In March we look forward to more new starts. Adult education tapes will be available each week for the next 5 weeks for home reflection, with a follow up meeting on April 5th. Communion Education will start on March 4th for children in grades K-3. This will take place during Sunday School time.
On March 4th we will also be kicking off our "Fill the Ark" mission project. All money raised will be sent to support the Heifer Project. Everyone is welcomed to participate.
At this time Iíd like to personally give everyone an A+ for all of the positive support Iíve seen given to the little people of our church. I have observed a lot of supportive smiles and heard a lot of encouraging words. I guess you can teach old dogs new tricks. (just kidding!)
Iíll just leave you with one more thought from Hugh Prather:
"Our children can see us. They canít see God. Our function is not to describe Godís love or to talk endlessly about it, but to reflect it so that it can be seen."
Thanks Again! and God Bless!
From the Attleboro Area
Council of Churches
The elder Ministries Committee presents: "Lenten Elder Visitor Training" on March 13 from 2:30-4:30 pm at Bristol Nursing Home 1000 Oakhill Ave., Attleboro.
Birthdays & Anniversaries
March 2: Michael Mankevech
March 3: Nora Roesser
March 4: Edward Gaouette,Tony Achin
March 9: Marcia Brinson
March 10: Layne Burgess
March 11: Kathryn Greve
March 12: Kerri Harrop
March 22: Nancy Gibbs
March 24: Jonathan Greve,
March 25: Nathan Twyman
March 31: Dave Fontaine
In our prayers:
Maggie, Shawn, Ervin Esty, Ann & Don Botsford, Bill Peterson, Dean & Bobby Ricker, Erica Ford, Bill Wright, Almena Grant, Miranda Berkley, Chessie, The Rev. Steve Bachelder, Alice & Gus, Doug Fontaine, Barbara Pasquantonio, Frank, Marion Sanders, Lynne Pittard, Gail Johnson, Mark Sullivan, Lois Blaise, Mike Lamarr, Gina Woodrum, Deb Lieberman, John Gray, Andrea, Donna Humphrey, Roger Pelletier, Ken Rapoza, Mark & Ruth, Carol Snow, Ann Boyd, Fran, Mimi, Harold Liston, Zachary, Peter and the Gulliver family, the family and friends of Dale Earnhardt, the family of Linda Smith
And our shut-ins: Elsie Morris, Marion Horman, Esther Angus
Upcoming Church Events at Oldtown!
March 1: Church Committee, 7 pm
March 2: World Day of Prayer
March 3: Suitcase Seminars in Paxton: 9-3
March 4: Lent One; Holy Communion. Communion Education Series for grades K-3. 9:10-9:30. Commuter tape available: Temptation
March 5: Women's Spirituality Group, 7 pm
March6: Tours for 3rd graders begin
Chime rehearsal- 7 pm
March 8: Board of Trustees, 7 pm
March 10: Pork Supper
March 11: Lent Two; CES, LES, Girl Scout Sunday
Ordination of Bob Richardson, Marion, 3 pm
March 13: Chime rehearsal
March 17: Shawn Garvey Ordination, Lakeville, 3 pm
March 18: Lent Three; CES, LES
March 21: Board of Deacons
March 24: Deacon's Retreat- Lakeville
March 25: Lent Four; CES, LES, One Great Hour of Sharing
March 26: Christian Education, 7 pm
March 28: Church Committee, 7 pm
March 30: Wedding rehearsal, 5 pm
March 31: Wedding, 4 pm
Lent at Oldtown
Lenten Education Series
Commuter Tapes on:
"Temptation", "Lamentation", "Repentance", "Forgiveness", "Blessedness"
Final Discussion: April 5, 7 pm