The Monthly Messenger February 2023
A Message from Pastor Sarah...
Dear Friends, In 1997, country singer Clint Black and his wife, Lisa Hartman Black, released the duet, “Something We Do”. While the verses focus on their love as a husband and wife, I find the chorus speaks to “something we do” as the church; “We help to make each other all that we can be, though we can find our strength and inspiration independently. The way we work together is what sets our love apart, so closely that we can’t tell where I end and where you start”. This month we have a lot of “somethings” to do as we share God’s love in our community and beyond. We continue to worship together on Sunday mornings and study together throughout the week. We continue to give together through our ingathering of supplies for Jared Boxes, which this year will not only be shared with Meadville Medical Center but also with the U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants in Erie. We continue to serve together as volunteers in the Soup Kitchen, with our children/youth ministries, in our broadcast booth and on committees, like staff-parish and finance, that keep the church on track. The list goes on! May it be true for the people of Stone that “the way we work together is what sets our love apart”. Thanks for being a part, and doing your part, for Christ’s ministry through Stone Church! Pastor Sarah
The Messenger is now online! Thank you to everyone who returned their Newsletter Delivery slips. Many of you switched to the email delivery option -- which will lead to a great savings in paper and printing costs going forward! Of course for those who need or prefer them, paper versions are still being mailed to those who requested them. Please contact the church office to make any changes to your preferences on how you would like to receive the Messenger. As we have always done, printed copies of the Messenger will continue to be available in our lobby and it will be posted on our website under the Resources heading - Monthly Newsletter. For those who would like one, a paper copy of the monthly calendar of church events is also available in the sanctuary and lobby. Email Office Administrator Jen Royer at email@example.com or call her at 814-724-6736 if you have any questions.
THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU A heartfelt thanks to… The thirty-plus people who engaged in our January 8th spring planning gathering…Jim Turnbull and team for providing “food for our fellowship” on so many occasions…Christmas Un-decorators: Joyce Minnis, John and Cindy Karns, Jim Turnbull, Millie Ray, Bob and Janet Waid, Barb Baker, Pastor Sarah and Marti Mailliard…Tyson Johnston and Carolyn Turnbull for staffing our broadcast booth (and those being trained to assist in this important ministry)…Darlene Ross and Sue Wardian for attending to end of the year financial reporting…All who provided financial support to Stone at the end of the year as well as offering a 2023 financial pledge…Debbie Knapp and the Staff-Parish committee for doing the hard work of preparing for a new pastor in July…the incredible lay leaders who have said “Yes” to ministry in 2023…Our office administrator, Jen Royer, for supporting the ministry of Stone in countless ways…To all who give to, pray for, and work with Stone UMC…
February Worship Calendar Stone UMC
9 AM - IN PERSON -and- Live on Armstrong Cable Channels 23 or 100, Facebook or stoneumc.org
Bethany UMC (140 Wadsworth Ave.) 10:30 AM - IN PERSON
February 5th Communion Sunday
February 12th "Souper Bowl" Sunday
February 19th Transfiguration Sunday
February 22nd Ash Wednesday
February 26th First Sunday in Lent
Do you or someone you know need a little TLC? Stone UMC's Care Team continues to coordinate delivery of food to anyone dealing with illness, a death in the family or a crisis of any kind. Donors provide soup, casseroles, bread and cookies to the first floor freezer. These food items can then be picked up and delivered the very day the request is made. For brief instructions on how to make a contribution or delivery, call the church office at 814724-6736, email firstname.lastname@example.org or go to stoneumc.org and click on "Care Team".
Opportunities to study and pray together this season... "Entering the Passion of Jesus: A Beginner's Guide to Holy Week"... Books are available by contacting the church office. In order to receive the Zoom invitation for the Thursday night session, registration is required. Please click HERE or contact the church office to register.
- Sunday Mornings 10 a.m. February 26-April 2, 2023
- Wednesday Mornings 10 a.m. February 22-March 29, 2023
- Thursday Nights 6:30 p.m. (online via Zoom) February 23-March 30, 2023
Men's Study will meet weekly on Friday nights at 6:45 p.m. in Miller Parlor throughout the Lent season. All men are welcome to join them as they take "A Journey Through Psalm 23".
You are invited to mark the beginning of the journey to Easter... Lent, the season of intentional reflection on our call and commitment as disciples of Jesus Christ, begins with Ash Wednesday February 22nd. You are invited to mark the beginning of the this holy season with a simple meal of soup and bread from 5:30-6:30 p.m. followed by a short prayer service and imposition of ashes at 6:30 p.m. All are welcome. Come as you are.
Whether you are a soup sipper or slurper - make sure you stop into Miller Parlor after worship on Sunday, February 12, 2023 and pick up a container of soup to support the WINS project which provides weekend food bags for students in Crawford Central elementary schools. Containers will be provided for you to fill up with the soup of your choice to take home...Still holding onto your soup container from last year's sale? Bring it along and fill 'er up! Soup makers and cookie bakers are needed for this event to be successful. There is no sign up ahead of time -- just make your soup or cookies and drop them off the morning of the Souper Bowl in the kitchenette across from Miller Parlor.
The Jared Box Project is back and expanding! Meadville Medical Center is running low on Jared Boxes and we are low on supply -- so it is time to re-stock! Throughout the months of February and March we will be collecting items to make more Jared Boxes. We will gather together at the end of March to assemble the boxes. Half of what is collected will be used to replenish the supply for MMC as they are needed throughout the year. The other half of the boxes will go to the Erie office of the US Committee for Refugees and Immigrants to be used as Welcome Boxes for children in refugee families. For more information, please visit our website HERE.
The response to our request for help at the end of the year with additional financial support exceeded our expectations. There were 25 gifts totaling $25,655. This support for the ministry and missions of Stone UMC is very gratifying. We are a growing church accepting new people - Open Hearts, Open Minds, Open Doors. Our Giving Intention cards are still available for 2023, if you want to participate. (Note: Many givers prefer to give as they are able and not complete cards.) This area of giving expanded in 2022 and is now more than $35,000 annually. We expect that to remain a critical component to Stone UMC's success. So far, we have 44 cards returned representing more than $105,000 in pledged giving. Last year, we had 32 cards returned and much less committed. This increase is again a reflection of our united efforts to spread the Word and meet the needs of our community. Lastly, we have additional endowments coming in as we are remembered by incredibly generous members. Peace, Your Finance Team
Congratulations to Lisa Clayton on the birth of her grandson, Rowan Ember Caelus, on January 2nd to parents Elizabeth Clayton & Cody Willey.
HOPE-Meadville (Health, Opportunity, Place-Making & Engagement) continues to offer a Community Coffee Hour at Bethany UMC, 140 Wadsworth Ave. every Wednesday at 10 a.m. Community members are encouraged to attend and learn more about the many programs HOPE offers.