DORCHESTER UNITED CHURCH NEWSLETTER
A CHRISTMAS GREETING FROM REV. KEITH
The year 2017 will be remembered as one of the most violent of the twenty
first century. From domestic violence to societal to country wide to
international, we have had to deal with a plethora of bloody massacres
which have taken their toll on us both emotionally and mentally. We may
have felt that we were being pushed to the limit of our ability to endure
the sights and sounds of the news at ground zero.
We long for a better world, a world at peace. One of the themes in the
season of Advent is precisely the one for which the world yearns. The 'Pax
Romana' of Ancient Rome was a sign that the Empire had come to terms with
the longing for peace in what was essentially a violent world. But the
question remained, peace at what cost? Rome had to convince the world that
it was in control. But the system of slavery and the bloody suppression of
uprisings wherever it surfaced led to even more violence.
The Roman Governor Pilate is remembered for his slaughter of 2,000 Judeans
who were protesting the Empire's draconian laws. And of course we cannot
forget Herod's massacre of the boy babies two years and under. Such a
dastardly deed was perpetrated in the hope that the baby Jesus, seen as a
threat to Herod's rule, would thus be eliminated. History is replete with
violence and our age is no exception. We yearn for a lasting peace, one
that 'Pax Americana' cannot guarantee. With a President not unlike Herod in
the White House, one who reacts to his every whim and fancy, one who lacks
any control over his actions, we may still be wondering about the source of
We have named Jesus, the Prince of Peace, in the hope that somehow, in some
wonderful way, He may be the source of a genuine and lasting peace. The
Middle East remains the source of that longing. The artificial truce on
Christmas day every year, a day when open hostilities cease for twenty four
hours, is a sobering reminder that Bethlehem remains a place of potential
violence. But as the hymn writer puts it, 'yet in thy dark streets shineth
the everlasting light.' Christians everywhere will be singing carols this
year, and the sights and sounds of peace will echo throughout the Churches
from Jerusalem to Dorchester.
Lydia and I and our extended family wish you above all peace in your homes
and in our world. May the New Year 2018 find us all at prayer that the rich
themes of Advent, of hope, peace, love and joy become the reality we have
so longed for.
A Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all.
"SOX IN THE BOX"
A Visioning Working Group Outreach Project
'Tis the time of year where many are thinking about filling Christmas
stockings hung by the fire…….
In our church family, we are all privileged to wear clean, dry, warm
socks throughout the whole year. New socks mean so much - warmth,
comfort, better health and self-esteem, the list goes on. Socks are the
most requested, and yet least donated item to those in need.
Please put a pair or two of new, warm socks, any size, any colour, any
style in your Christmas shopping basket.
Place them in the "Sox in the Box" collection boxes
beside the Food Bank containers in the back of the sanctuary or at the
back entrance of the church.
| CALENDAR OF EVENTS
Advent Book Study "All Earth is Waiting" will begin at 2
pm at Dorchester UC.|
This is led by Mary Dillon from Reynolds Creek UC. We
alternate between 3 churches.
For more information/rides, call Carol Reid
1st Advent Sunday
will start at 9:50 am each Advent Sunday
for Ruth Lewis & Betty Hunter
Annual Ecumenical Service of Carols and Readings 2pm
at St. Peter's Anglican Church (Dorchester)
UCW Christmas Dinner - 6:30 pm at the
home of Lenore Broomfield
2nd Advent Sunday
3rd Advent Sunday|
4th Advent Sunday
7:00 pm Christmas Eve Service of the congregation.
February 4, 2018
Regular Service & Annual Meeting
As December approaches, I would like to take this opportunity to wish you
all a happy and blessed Advent and Christmas season. Lighting the Advent
Candles, singing Christmas Carols, hearing the Christmas Story, these are
some of the things that make our Advent Services special. I look forward to
seeing you all as we celebrate the birth of Jesus together!
At this time I wish to inform you that Reverend Larry's Medical Leave has
now been extended to the end of March 2018. We continue to keep Larry, Gwen
and their family in our thoughts and prayers. Reverend Keith Rameshwar has
graciously agreed to continue as our Pulpit Supply.
Blessings to you all. Glenn Baskerville
Planning for our Future
The Visioning Working Group was implemented in January 2017. We developed
Guiding Principles and completed a List of Outreach Initiatives including
the Holy Diner and Messages of Encouragement. Our next area of focus led to
a discussion about Visioning and Planning for our Future. We started
discussing the following topics, listed in no particular order of
importance, and the current status of Dorchester United Church.
United Church of Canada Organization restructure
Community Outreach needs
- Volunteer resources and capacity, roles & competing societal
- Leadership - Ministry Personnel, Church Board positions
- Finances - giving patterns & budget needs
Christian Education & Development
We brainstormed some possible actions, but these discussions led us to
short term solutions that have a potentially finite duration. We must
anticipate the future and do our best to put plans in place to prepare for
it. Successful organizations know the importance of planning for the
future. We want to be proactive rather than reactive, so
it's time to ask some difficult, and emotionally charged questions.
If you are interested in sharing your vision of our future church, you are
invited to join in our discussions to help us to work together to create a
common vision. Contact Glenn Baskerville or Joyce Holland for more
Pulpit Supply - Rev. Keith Rameshwar
For Pastoral Care:
Rev. Lewis Snow 519-202-0312, Rev. Bruce Scott 519-268-7890
Wednesdays, 10:00 - 11:30 am
Dianne Timms Residence: (519) 202-0106 Church office: (519) 268-3154
E-mail: dorchesterUC@bellnet.ca Website: www.dorchesterunitedchurch.ca