February 25, 2016

News from First Congregational Church
an Open and Affirming Congregation of the United Church of Christ 


33 South High Street, Bridgton, Maine

Reading for the week: Second Corinthians 12:1-18
Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And all of us, with unveiled faces, seeing the glory of the Lord as though reflected in a mirror, are being transformed into the same image…

From Julian of Norwich
…our true mother, Jesus, he who is all love, bears us into joy and eternal life; blessed may he be! 

How could everything that is be a mere hazelnut in relation to the vastness of God? How can it be that all is as it should be? Can mystical revelations into the being of God happen without the companionship of a cat?

You’ll have to come to church to find out! You may have heard of the fourteenth century mystic named Julian of Norwich, but this Sunday we will learn more about her spiritual insights. Elizabeth Preysner, a student of Margaret Lindsey Sanborn’s at Trinity, will be speaking about Julian’s concept of the divine. Ms. Preysner grew up in the UCC and is now a candidate in the ordination process of the Episcopal Church. 

Lenten Lunches started on Ash Wednesday and will continue on Wednesdays at noon at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church.

Feb 24: Bridgton Alliance Church
March 2: Bridgton United Methodist and United Parish Congregational of N. Bridgton and Harrison.
March 9: Lake Region Vineyard and South Bridgton Congregational
March 16: First Congregational Church, UCC

Craft Night * Pysanky * March 16 * 6 PM

A pysanka is a pretty Ukrainian Easter egg, decorated with traditional Ukrainian folk designs using a wax-resist (batik) method. The word pysanka comes from the verb pysaty, “to write”, as the designs are not painted on, but written with beeswax. Pysanky are typically made to be given to family members and respected outsiders. To give a pysanka is to give a symbolic gift of life.

We will complete one Pysanka during our class, it may take 2 to 3 hours to complete. Space is limited so sign up is necessary. Please sign up on sheet in fellowship hall. This class is for adults and older teens in our congregation.

March 20 – Palm Sunday

  • Come dressed in robes (solid or striped bathrobes are great) we have head-dresses and palm fronds to wave. Enjoy the fun as we parade around the sanctuary on this wonderful morning.
  • Easter Egg Hunt during CE time.

March 24 – Maundy Thursday

  • Service of Tenebrae at 7 pm

March 27 – Easter

  • Family worship at 10 am.
  • The nursery will be available, but no Christian Education classes. The Junior Choir will be singing

Away? Can’t make it to church?
Would you like to hear the choir?
Maybe even the sermon?

Audio of services is now available at:

Spiritual Growth

The Tuesday afternoon
Study and Prayer Group
1:30 p.m.

Devotional or inspirational reading and prayer for our church family.

We are studying The Book of Awakening, Having the Life You Want by Being Present to the
Life You Have
 by Mark Nepo.

Thursdays 8:15-9:30
Bible Journeys
Lively, curious reading and conversation about what’s in the Bible, what’s not, and what it all means for the world today.

We have started reading Short Stories by Jesus: The Enigmatic Parables of a Controversial Rabbi by Amy Jill Levine. â€œThis is probably the best book on parables available today: brief, informative, witty, and very interesting.” says Mark Allan Powell, editor of the HarperCollins Bible Dictionary.

All Are Welcome!

We Hold One Another
in Love  and in Prayer

Prayers of Comfort for. . .
Price Hutchins and family who are grieving Ann’s death on February 6th…The family of Wes Cannell who died on January 10th.

Prayers of Healing and Support for…
Shirley Barnes who is at CMMC recuperating from surgery to remove tumors…Deantha Warner who is home and traveling to Boston once a week for treatments following a bone marrow transplant…Sarah Nadeau who is being treated for bacterial meningitis and her parents Jeanine & Jason Nadeau… Ken Rollins…Donna Coombs…Judy Ottley’s daughter Sherry Saucerman…Marion Farabee…Dick and Barbara Mayo…Jo Faust…Jayne Hamaty’s sister-in-law, Becky Bean, who is claiming life after treatment for cancer.

Prayers of Courage and Support
for our friends on active duty in the Armed Forces, and their families…

Jordan Vigna…Russell Sanborn…Jimmy DeAngelo…Richard L. Gyure II…Steven Milton

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