Saints, Sacrament, and Steps

posted Oct 30, 2020, 7:23 AM by Tricia Sheffield

Dear Middletown Reformed Church Family and Friends,

The grace and peace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you.

We have quite a day of worship planned for Sunday!

First, Sunday is All Saints Day -- a special worship when we hold in the light those we lost this year. In a year in which COVID-19 has interrupted the ways in which we usually mourn those who have died, it is especially important to remember them this Sunday. We will read their names in worship, and honor their lives. And also, I invite you to think about people who are encouraging you now on your faith journey. Who has shaped, or is shaping you in your walk with God? How have they been transformative in your love for God and neighbor? We will also name these living saints as a way to express our gratitude to God for their lives of integrity and faith. 

Second, as this is the first Sunday of the month we will celebrate the Sacrament of the Lord’s Supper at God’s wide open table of welcome. For those worshiping in person, you will find your own personal sealed communion chalice with bread and grape juice at your seat. For those who will be worshiping with us on Zoom or Livestream, I invite you to prepare your table at home. Light a candle and gather before you bread and juice/wine.

That’s correct - I mentioned Livestream! All are welcome to worship with us in real time on our YouTube channel — MRC: A Fabulous Church of Love. If you are unable to be with us live, the worship will be up on YouTube later on Sunday or Monday. Please know the Prayers of the People will not be broadcast in order to respect the privacy of those who are mentioned for prayer.

And lastly, after worship at 12 PM we will have a blessing and dedication of our newly renovated front steps. I must say, every time I walk by or go up the steps and grab the railings I breathe a prayer of thanksgiving to God and to all of you for making this dream of a safe, welcoming entrance to our church a reality. The year 2020 may not have turned out as we expected, but still, there is much for which to be grateful, even in such a time as this. 

So, come to remember our saints, celebrate the Sacrament, and bless the steps at 10:30 AM in the sanctuary, on Zoom, or on our YouTube channel this Sunday with your church family. Nancy Coffin will be singing a beautiful hymn “Beatitudes," and our Postlude is “For All the Saints” Judith Daugherty, organ. I will be preaching from Matthew 5.1-12, and my sermon title is The Blessed Ones. If you would like to come to worship in person, please respond to me via email, text, or phone letting me know you’d like to attend. In order to observe social distancing, seating is limited to about 20-22 worshipers. I need your response no later than TODAY BY 9 PM so that we can prepare seating arrangements.

Oh, and don’t forget to set your clocks back one hour on Saturday night as Daylight Saving Time ends then. 

For all the saints who from their labors rest, who Thee by faith before the world confessed; Thy name, O Jesus, be forever blest. Alleluia, Alleluia!

Alleluia, indeed.

In gratitude for the privilege of being your pastor and the holy call of loving you,

Pastor Trish