February 16, 2017
Connections: Valentine’s Day
I love Valentine’s Day. Specifically, I love the cards - the clever ways we try to convey our love for one another. Linden brought home a dozen cards from her classmates yesterday, and the clear winner was a gift of a s’more with the line, “I’d like to have s’more friends like you!” Jackpot.
The origins of this particular day are traced back to Saint Valentine, a priest in Rome in the 3rd century. According to Shane Claiborne, Valentine assisted Christians persecuted under Claudius II. One of the ways he assisted them was by marrying them - thus preventing the men from going to war. Such assistance did not go unnoticed, and eventually, Valentine was captured and sentenced to death for his crimes/faithfulness. This led to a practice we know well. Claiborne shares this story:
Valentine became friends with the daughter of his captor. Just before he was executed, Valentine healed the blind daughter of the jailer, restoring her vision -- a dazzling act of enemy-love. As the legend goes -- on the day of his execution, he left the jailer's daughter a note signed: "Your Valentine" ...
He continues with a word of encouragement:
Perhaps even more faithful to Valentine would be to write a note to someone who might be an enemy or who might be a most unlikely, subversive friend.
This is exactly where the lectionary takes us. This coming Sunday, we’ll continue on in the Sermon on the Mount and hear of Christ’s command to Love - even our enemies. Heal their child. Forgive them. Invite them in to your home. Or, write them a valentine.
See what happens when we do.
PARENTS - The Christian Ed Board would like your input about this
year's Vacation Bible School. We'd like to expand to 2 days (probably
Friday and Saturday), teaching the Bible story and making a craft the
first day and spending the second day on various service projects.
The sessions could be held in the morning or afternoon, depending on
your response. More info to come.
This week's Sunday School lesson covers the Sermon on the Mount. The
children will make a craft about the Beatitudes. Next week, they'll
learn about the feeding of the 500.
Youth group met Sunday for lunch, fellowship, and playing Battleship.
We discussed participating in a modified 30 Hour Famine.
Blessings, Vickie 440-285-3236 440-478-6745 firstname.lastname@example.org
The Consistory Retreat has been rescheduled for Saturday, March 25th from 8 AM - 2:30 PM in the Parlor.
Funeral for Jay Sage:
The funeral for Jay Sage will be held at Pilgrim Christian Church on Saturday, February 18th @ 11:00AM. Visitation will occur from 10-11:00AM at the church as well. A luncheon will follow the service downstairs in the fellowship hall.
Funeral for Sherri Farrell:
The funeral for Sherri Farrell will be held at Pilgrim Christian Church on Saturday, February 25th @ 2:00pm with refreshments and fellowship to follow.
Ash Wednesday: Wednesday, March 1 @ 6:00-7:00pm
We begin our Season of Lent with an Ash Wednesday service. It will be held in the fellowship parlor from 6-7:00pm. This is a time and a place to prepare for the journey of Lent, to reflect upon our humanity, and to go beyond the mind we have (repent) and move into more of God’s goodness, grace, and mercy. The service will feature scripture readings, lectio divina, the imposition of ashes, and communion.
Refugee Meeting: February 27 @ 7pm
In partnership with the First Presbyterian Church of Willoughby, an interest group has sprouted seeking additional ways to engage and serve the refugee population within the Cleveland Area. After two gatherings focused on education, this next meeting will concentrate on action - what can be done as individuals, as individual congregations, and together? If you’d like to get engaged, you can contact Chris or simply show up at the First Presbyterian Church of Willoughby at 7:00pm!
For the Lord your God is God of gods and Lord of lords, the great God, mighty and awesome, who is not partial and takes no bribe, who executes justice for the orphan and the widow, and who loves the strangers, providing them with food and clothing. You shall also love the stranger, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt. ~ Deuteronomy 10.17-19
Living Prayer Retreat @ Celebration Lutheran:
Connect with Chris if you are interested in this prayer retreat!
Prayers of the People
Prayers for Healing and Wholeness:
Jan Stewart Eileen Moore John Hopkins Bill Rolf Steve Wick Nathaniel Stolle
For the friends and family of Jay Sage For the friends and family of Sherri Farrell