The Beautiful Body of Christ

Post date: Nov 13, 2020 3:44:24 PM

Dear Middletown Reformed Church Family and Friends,

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

This Sunday is Stewardship Sunday when we get to reflect on how God is calling us to use our gifts for the ministries of the church. For those who are local, the Financial Team has mailed you a time, talents, and treasures form for you to pray over and fill out as to how you wish to volunteer in 2021. To be sure, many of the volunteer opportunities are on hold now due to the pandemic; but hopefully, in the coming year and with a vaccine, we will be able to gather together fully. That form also has a question about your monetary giving and they would be very thankful if you would fill that section out too so as to help them with the budget for 2021. Please return the form to the church address by December 13, attention Cindy Reya or Dianne Asay

Let me just add how grateful I am to you for all the ways you have shown up during this pandemic to continue to do the loving work to which Christ has called us. You have supported one another — cooking and bringing food to each other; you’ve exchanged books and puzzles as a means to curb the boredom when we were under a stay at home order; you have written notes of encouragement and called to see how the other was doing; you have gathered in small groups in the Meditation Garden as a means to check in and lift each other’s spirits; and you have gathered on Zoom for Wednesday morning prayer time and Adult Education. In these ways and many more, you have continued to be the hands and feet of Christ for each other and our community throughout this pandemic. You have shown the Spirit of God’s love that is in our congregation, and for that I am very thankful. When I think about your giving of self, I am reminded of this blessing attributed to St. Teresa of Avila:

Christ has no body now but yours. No hands, no feet on earth but yours. Yours are the eyes through which he looks compassion on this world. Yours are the feet with which he walks to do good. Yours are the hands through which he blesses all the world. Yours are the hands, yours are the feet, yours are the eyes, you are his body. Christ has no body now on earth but yours.

Beautiful body of Christ, I look forward to welcoming you to worship at 10:30 AM in the sanctuary, on Zoom, or on our YouTube channel this Sunday. We have inspiring music planned for our worship. Our Opening Song is “Shine On Us” Sarah Gordon, soloist; our anthem is “Hear Our Praises” Sarah Gordon, soloist; and our Sermon-Prayer-Song is “Lord, Be Glorified” Judith Daugherty, piano — all accompanied by Brian Kolins, percussion. I will be preaching from 1 Thessalonians 5.1-11 and my sermon title is People of the Light. 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.

Beloved, as the second wave of COVID is now here in New Jersey, I urge you to keep wearing your mask, practice social distancing, and wash your hands frequently. My prayers continue for you to be safe and healthy in this pandemic.

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

Pastor Trish