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3/10/24 Weekly Messenger

Hancock UCC Weekly Messenger for March 10, 2024

 

I heard the voice of Jesus say, “I am this dark world’s light; look unto me, thy morn shall rise, and all thy day be bright.” I looked to Jesus, and I found in him my star, my sun; and in that light of life I’ll walk, till trav'ling days are done.

 


Don’t forget to

“Spring Forward”

              Sunday, March 10th at 2:00 A.M.

 

 

 

 




Upcoming services, meetings, events, and opportunities

 

Join us for Worship in our Sanctuary or on Zoom at 10:00 a.m., 

or watch the recording later on Facebook or YouTube 

 

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 822 2425 2518

Passcode: 755650

 

on YouTube at Hancock UCC - YouTube

 

Choir rehearsals are Sunday mornings at 9:15 a.m.

All are welcome and we would love to have you join us.

 

Our meetings are open to all. If you would like to attend a meeting, please let TJ or Vicky know and they will provide the Zoom link, or you are welcome to attend in person.

 

Trustees will meet Wednesday, March 13th at 12 noon on Zoom.

Council will meet Friday, March 15th at 11:30 a.m. in person and on Zoom.


Lenten Wednesday Study Group

Join Pastor TJ for C.S. Lewis and the Delightful, Diabolical Daring of Lent:

A Lenten Companion to “The Screwtape Letters.”

We will enjoy soup & bread at noon while listening to comedic actor John Cleese read

C.S. Lewis’ “The Screwtape Letters,” followed by discussion from 12:30 – 1:30.

Study guides are in the back of the Sanctuary or available electronically.

 

Holy Week Services

We will hold a Maundy Thursday Tenebrae Service on Thursday, March 28th at 7:00 pm. An Easter Sunrise Service will be held as well as the regular 10:00 am Worship Service on Easter Sunday, March 31st. More information will be available on these services soon.

 

Upcoming March Birthdays and Anniversaries           

 12: Tom Severance    13: Zachary Spaulding    15: Harry Lounder III 

15: Nick Davis    20: Vivian Foss    21: Eveline Thorsen

21: Savanna Havey    23: Linc* Ehrlenbach     28: Pam Bowie     29: Debbie Maddocks

 

Handy Woman for Hire!

Personal care; Food preparation and cooking; Shopping;

Gardening; Interior and Exterior Painting

Lori Stratton

 

Dear Friends and Family,

The Crabtree Family will hold a Memorial Service to celebrate the life of Steven Crabtree on Monday July 29th at 4 pm at 864 Point Road, Hancock Maine. We invite you to stay for food and drink after the ceremony. We look forward to seeing you and sharing memories about Steve.          –        With love, Shona, Tyler, Dwight and Carolynn Crabtree

 

Please keep the following people in your prayers this week:


Prayers for the people of Lewiston and all of Maine; Prayers for the world, suffering loss and grief in Israel, Palestine, Ukraine, Russia, Sudan, and so many other places experiencing ongoing wars and conflicts. Prayers for the life, and death, of Ron and Kathy’s friend Bob Jones, and prayers for his wife Karen and their family and friends. Prayers for Joyce Cornwell, recovering from TLIF spinal fusion surgery in Portland; Bruce’s sister, Lynn, awaiting treatment options for her cancer diagnosis; Sally’s friend, Sue Barger who recently received a cancer diagnosis; Prayers for Cynthia’s Aunt Barbara, for William, and for Breck V. all receiving Hospice Care. Prayers for Mary Angel’s mother Caroline, Ron & Kathy; Ruth; Sally’s sister Martha & her husband John; John Wood; Doris; Jim Snyder; Coulter; Jonathan Holmes; Sue Davies; Nancy & John & Jonas; Pat & Penny; Sue Davenport; Austin’s cousin Danny; Liz & Jim; Debbie & Lincoln & son-in-law Aaron, daughter Ashley, and granddaughter Brielle; Kenny Stratton; Joy & David & Lori; Sandy Phippen; Betty & her step-daughter Mollie; Debbie & Hollis & Holly and Debbie’s Aunt Linda Reed; Patrice’s niece Erica; Amy Nickerson; Tom & Judy’s son Andrew & family; Prayers of strength and healing for all awaiting diagnoses and for all recovering from surgeries & procedures; Prayers for all that are unsafe, unhoused, hungry & in need of care & compassion; Prayers for all individuals and families experiencing addictions; prayers for all caregivers; and prayers for all that is in your heart…

 

For those of you who might not know Brandon Perry-Hudson, he is a member here at HUCC. He went through youth group, confirmation, and was a choir member. He is the son of Heath and Lee Hudson, nephew of Savanna Havey, and was the former son-in- law of John Wood and Catherine Genn. Please keep him and his family in your prayers.   ~Vicky

 

Brandon's broken body is lying in a Boston hospital bed after a near-fatal car accident on Feb 7, 2024. As Brandon is a disabled veteran of the US Marine Corp, he is now under the care of the Veteran's Administration at their facility in Boston. He is truly blessed that his internal organs are intact and functioning and that he is finally beginning to heal.

 

Due to the critical nature of his injuries, he was transported by med-flight ambulance from St. Croix to Miami (where he knows no one) and he spent two weeks at the Ryder Trauma Center at Jackson Memorial Hospital followed by another week at the Bruce W Carter VA Hospital.  He has already had over 15 hours of multiple major surgical procedures and is thanking God he is alive and healing!

 

His major injuries include:

●     broken left shoulder and smashed humerus (surgically repaired now)

●     broken and shattered acetabular (hip) socket (surgically repaired now)

●     severely dislocated femur (thigh bone)

●     patella (kneecap) completely broken in two pieces (surgically repaired now)

●     6 fractured ribs

●     broken bone and 2 fractures in his foot

●     broken right thumb

●     fractured cheekbone and occipital (eye socket) bone

●     left knee ripped open - closed with 18 stitches

 

Last Friday, the doctors determined Brandon was finally strong enough to manage the 3+ hour flight and we were able to bring him to Boston, as he has family in the area who can participate in providing the many layers of support and company he'll need in the coming months.

 

Brandon will be wheelchair bound for at least several more weeks (to months) as his knee, foot and shoulder injuries are 'non-weight bearing' and he will be unable to return to work for months to come. He is currently still in the hospital and beginning physical therapy to keep his body moving while he awaits the healing of his bones. He'll stay inpatient for his physical rehabilitation, hopefully moving to a nursing home as he gets stronger.

 

Brandon was whisked suddenly and unexpectedly from his tropical island life and is now plunked into the New England late winter. He needs to purchase some appropriate winter/spring clothing (and shoes, when he can wear them), pay off the first-class airline ticket it took for him to get to Boston (his leg doesn't bend at all, so he required the leg room). He also needs to continue to pay his mortgage and bills and buy supplemental healthy food - as the hospital is, obviously, only providing a minimally healthy diet.

 

We were able to finally gingerly bring him to Boston last Friday, after 2 days in St Croix and 21 days of hospitalization in Miami. I met up with him within hours of him landing in Miami on Feb 9, and stayed by his side for the entire time, giving him the personal care that the hospital just doesn't have the time and staff to provide - especially feeding, bathing, comforting, hair-brushing, as well as advocating for him while he was unable to speak up for himself from the depths of his agony. He lay in the bed broken for 7 days before they could perform the first of the surgeries - during which time he was unable to move any of his body except his left leg and his right arm - although his right arm had multiple IV's, sprained fingers and a broken thumb. There have been several very painful 'other' issues. You could ask him about the catheter issues he's had or about what Brandon describes as the most excruciating pain he has ever experienced - the traction bar that was literally bolted through his leg and strung with a 15 lb weight holding his hip out of socket so that it wouldn't heal incorrectly while he waited for 5 days for the surgical trauma hip specialist to fit him into his schedule.

 

The life-threatening, terrifying and horrific car accident happened not far from his home of 9 years, on the USVI of St Croix. During a torrential downpour on an island darkened by power-outage, his car was 'clipped' in the rear by a fast-approaching vehicle and sent off-road into a ditch and then a rock wall, completely smashing the car and deploying the airbags. Blessedly, bystanders were able to rescue his mangled body just before the car burst into flames.

 

Thank you for your consideration and for keeping Brandon in your prayers. If you can spare a bit to help him out, that would be amazing, if not, please keep sending your well-wishes and positive, healing energy! A gofundme page has been set up on facebook to help him out.

Here is the link to that page:

– Lee Hudson, Brandon’s mom

 

 

 

From the Maine Conference

At Times Like These…

Beloved,

   Last week I spent several days with my Conference Minister colleagues in Cleveland for meetings with the National staff of the UCC and meetings among ourselves. During that time, we shared—a lot. We shared about the transitional nature of church work, the feeling that every Conference Minister operates as a Transitional Conference Minister as we guide and shepherd our churches through times like these…times post COVID as we are still reeling from how our numbers shrank because folks got out of the habit of going to church on Sunday morning, as folks moved away, as some beloved ones did not survive the pandemic. We shared that all across the U.S, and even abroad we wonder about our future—with small churches becoming the norm (72% of our churches in Maine) and we plan for new pastoring models and new ministry models that nurture our Spirits and our Souls and keep God’s hope alive in the surrounding communities where we serve.

 

   For those of you who attended one of my workshops last spring: “Alive and Thrive, any size”, you know that I hold hope for our future; that God is doing a new thing among us, asking us in Isaiah: “Do you not perceive it?” My purpose here is not to reprise a summary of the workshop or even to give testimonies of the many churches I have visited who are catching the spirit of “Alive and Thrive, any size”. My hope through this writing is for you to know that we in the Maine Conference are not alone; that all Conference Ministers such as I are contemplating, praying over, looking to God for our future as it unfolds, hoping beyond hope, that we do perceive it. My hope is that you will join with me—that we can partner together—in contemplations, prayers, and diligent listening for God’s still speaking voice.

 

   It is timely that I raise these challenges during the Lenten period—a period where we strive to come closer to God by giving up what keeps us from coming closer; a time when we wonder about the life and teachings of Jesus and his proclamations to name Simon as Peter and pray for unity among his followers so that his church would continue past his mortal life. And in just a few weeks we will be reminded once more that we indeed are a resurrection people. What dies comes to life in new ways we cannot yet imagine, even as God asks us “do you not perceive it” right here and right now.

 

   When I think of the church throughout the ages, transition times have been more frequent than we could imagine. The life and manifestation of Christ’s church has twisted and turned, ballooned and shrunk—by human standards—throughout the millennia. Twists and turns, ballooning and shrinking are inevitable because we change, the earth changes, the world around us changes. The transition time and uncertainties we are experiencing in the church are reflective of the transitions and uncertainties we are experiencing in our country and our world—atrocities in the middle east and Ukraine and atrocities at home with mass shootings; U.S. leaders that just don’t want to work together—wondering if we will continue to witness division, human behavior at its worst, which could lead us to wonder where God is working in our world.

 

   Beloved, God is still working in the world—through us and so many others who believe in the power of love and welcome; who are committed to bringing the realm of heaven to our corner of the world. Even in the midst of the most difficult transition times we can have hope because we are God’s hope. We are God’s spokespersons for peace and justice, welcome and inclusion, caring for all whoever they are in concrete ways. We can have hope for our future and know that God is not done with us; God is never done with us. The world needs us to show the overwhelming, inclusive love of God through embrace and through mission as the hands and feet of Jesus.

 

God IS doing a new thing…. will we perceive it? Do we?

 

We will as we put our trust in the steadfast love, presence, and guidance of our God, as we are reminded through the words of the 3rd chapter of Lamentations:

 

Because of the LORD’s great love we are not consumed, for God’s compassions never fail. 23 They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.

 

24 I say to myself, “The LORD is my portion; therefore I will wait for the Lord.”

25 God is good to those whose hope is in God, to the one who seeks God;

26 it is good to wait quietly for the salvation of the LORD.

 

At times like these…

 

Beloved, my prayers for each of you this Lent is to give up anything that prevents you from putting your total hope in our faithful God who calls us now, even in the midst of transition, and calls us to lean into the future God holds for us.

 

Your Partner in Faith and Ministry,

Marisa

 

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