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God-with-us

bellAlleluia, God is with us!  God made the bold and loving decision to send his only son to earth!  He sent Jesus to teach us how to live, and to experience the fullness and risks of mortal life on earth.

I recently went through a "dry" spell in which I couldn't feel God's presence, yet I continued to pray and believe as I had before.  Finally I included in my prayers my wish to feel close to God again.  On the third Sunday in Advent, while praying in a downtown Philadelphia church that we visited, I got an answer.  I felt God say to me, "I am always with you, look next to your heartbeat" and I was again filled with God's presence, his love, joy and peace.  When I focus on my heartbeat, I have to to tune out the surrounding distractions of everyday life.  By focusing like that, I can feel God's presence, right next to my heartbeat.  That was my alleluia experience this year.  Jesus Christ, Emmanuel, which means God-with-us, is good news!

May you all know the joy of God-with-you.

 

Rise & Shine! new outreach ideas abound

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Written by Ken Burger

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Exciting ideas have been on the rise regarding improvements to the church facilities to support outreach to our community.  The process started last summer when small groups gathered in patio discussions.  Many suggestions poured forth on how we might use our buildings to take better advantage of the rising spirit within our congregation.  

The enthusiasm increased as our membership voted to "Feed the Hungry" by offering free pancake breakfasts and by refitting our Rainbow House as the Ledyard food pantry!  The free breakfasts are happening now, and the town food pantry (currently located at the Town Hall) will be here as soon as the Rainbow House can be properly fitted to accommodate shelving, regrigerators and freezers.  That work is in progress now.

We have formed Task Forces to investigate ways to refurbish the LCC buildings to achieve the outreach ideas brought forth at the Patio Discussions. The premise of the discussion was that we wanted to do whatever we could to improve our missions and programs, while embracing our core Christian values.  

  • The Fellowship Hall kitchen and bathrooms may be reconfigured and modernized to comfortably support large gatherings for dinners and other events.
  • The Cy Anderson Hall could get a makeover to enable more community uses such as wedding receptions, lectures, seminars and large group meetings.
  • Energy use throughout our facilities could be made much more efficient, protecting the environment and saving money spent on heat and electricity.  
  • The Lester Room could be spiffed up for our youth and community small-group programs in health, counseling or support.  
  • Improvements to our parking lot, lighting, signs and sanctuary could make us more visible, welcoming and accessible to attract guests to our worship services.

Work is expected to begin soon with the installation of a new energy-efficient furnace.  Fundraising (pledging) is off to a good start, too: watch the Chatters for details on this.

The Spirit is indeed moving among us!  Thanks be to God!

(slightly modified from the April 2015 Chatter article by Ken Burger, Moderator)

 

Pancake Breakfast at Ledyard Congregational Church

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Written by Administrator

pancakes

!  FREE    FREE     FREE !

On the first Saturday of every month, our church volunteers are ready to serve you a fresh, hot breakfast of your choice.  Pancakes, scrambled eggs and sausages are one choice, another is creamed, chipped beef on toast.  It's always delicious!

  • Date:  First Saturday of every month
  • Time:  7:30 -10am
  • Place:  Ledyard Congregational Church, Fellowship Hall (the newer section)

Donations are accepted, although not necessary.  Any profits are used for a worthy cause, sometimes within the church, sometimes for local charities, sometimes for international efforts.  Please join us, you'll feel very good inside!

 

Ledyard Food Pantry Volunteers

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Written by Administrator

Ledyard-Food-Locker2Terrific response!  

More than 50 volunteers came forward to assist with the new Ledyard Food Pantry!  It is wonderful to be part of such a caring community, both within our church and in the broader Ledyard area.  Thank you for your interest in helping with this exciting new initiative!

Meanwhile, volunteers from our church have been working hard to renovate the Rainbow House for its transformation into the Ledyard Food Pantry:  wiring, windows, weather-proofing and painting, shelving and lighting all being re-done.  Thank you for your hard, dedicated efforts!

   

Core Values

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The guiding principles for our actions . . . 

. . . Regarding family and community:
  • To serve the community: both locally and world wide.
  • To support all members of the church family by promoting a spirit of belonging and caring.
  • To provide an environment for the church families to educate and build faith in their children.  
. . . Regarding spirituality:
  • To have a relationship with God that is inspired by the Holy Spirit and follows the example of Jesus Christ.
  • To accept the Word as contained in the scriptures.
  • To have faith and joy which are uplifted by worship, prayer and music.  
. . . Regarding love, compassion and acceptance:
  • To have a welcoming and accepting attitude that respects the diversity of all others.
  • To follow The Golden Rule; which means loving others before ourselves.
  • To provide for the sick and needy through visitations, prayer, and financial support.  
. . . Regarding our heritage and history:
  • To draw inspiration and knowledge from our history and heritage.
  • To learn from our past and use those lessons to guide our future.
  • To remain flexible and open to change.
. . . Regarding communication:
  • To provide timely and open communication about important issues that may affect our congregation.
  • To maintain confidentiality when appropriate, and discourage gossip.  
. . . Regarding confrontation:
  • To provide an open forum and encourage members to freely voice their points of view.
  • To encourage the expression of views in a constructive, compassionate manner.  
Approved at the Semi-Annual Meeting, June 14, 2009
   

A One-Minute Spiritual Exercise

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Written by CB

branch-and-the-blue-blue-sk"Sit as comfortably as you can, letting your legs and arms relax. Place one hand on your abdomen...breathe slowly, your hand rising and falling, for one minute. ...Attempt to focus on the presence of God as you relax.  Survey your surroundings as you breathe, and know that Christ is present with you in this very place; you do not need to look anywhere else to find him."

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- excerpt from Right Here, Right Now:  Spiritual Exercises for Busy Christians, by Dr. Carstens and Rev. Mahedy"

The exercise above is the first one-minute exercise described in this book, and it is my favorite.  When I do this, I feel great awe at the fact that God is right there! And hand-in hand with that comes tremendous peace, knowing that I can lean on God if I need to.  No matter how busy we are, we can spare 1 minute.  This is a very good book, and it's in our church library.  I hope you'll try this exercise, and may the peace of God be with you.