This Week...



New Community E Note  2 19 2021

“The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want” is the very familiar beginning to Psalm 23. If you grew up like I did and your parents made sure you were on time and properly dressed for Sunday School every Sunday morning, it was probably one of the first Bible passages you memorized. I have never been able to figure out if it was my lack of attention, my desire to be anywhere but there, or maybe even just plain stupidity that caused me to misunderstand this verse for years longer than I wish to admit. Back then I thought it meant the Lord is my shepherd and I don’t want anything to do with that. I now understand it to mean the Lord is my shepherd and as long as I remember and stay in touch with that belief, I have everything I really need. Don’t get me wrong, there were a lot of things I wanted, desired and maybe even thought I really needed—but desires are not needs.


I have been thinking about that phrase a lot these last several months as I do my best to patiently wait for the time when we can all gather together again. It is not easy to be patient; it has almost been a whole year since we gathered for worship, went out to dinner and ate inside a restaurant or gathered with kids, grandkids and even great-grandkids. Let’s remind ourselves that we are getting close to being able to do it again! Let’s continue to be careful, get our shots and remember what we learned so long ago—the Lord is my shepherd and we will get through this because our Shepherd is with us every step of the way.


A lot has happened at the church this week. And yes, it is still all “masked and socially distanced.” Toby and Barbara began cleaning the sanctuary building Tuesday to get it ready for our return. A lot of dust falls in 11 months—and a lot of stuff doesn’t get put back where it belongs. The entry way has been emptied, wiped down and moped and the Wesley Room is beginning to be rearranged to be part of the worship space so we have plenty of room to social distance when we return. Of course, we will need to add a screen before the room is as functional as the main seating area. We will also need to figure out the restroom situation. While Barbara and Toby were working upstairs, Dawn and Suzanne were busy downstairs restocking the Thrift Store. Then on Thursday, Verna, Wally and Dawn took care of the restocking


Thrift Store donations continue to arrive daily and so far, our Tuesday and Thursday restocking seems to be able to have the store ready for our regular Saturday Store hours. Last Saturday, Suzanne, Dawn and Susan took care of the cash register while Sam and Richard did the greeting and Tammy hung some clothes in the back room. Hopefully, after more of us get our “second shots” we will also be able to open on Wednesdays. In the meantime, many thanks to Sandy, Susan and Margaret for steaming Wednesday mornings. If you would like to help form a second steaming group, we could make it happen Monday or Friday mornings or any weekday afternoon except Wednesdays.


Stella and Scott have just about finished the fence around the dumpster. We locked the cage for the first time this afternoon. It will be a great help in keeping the trash in the dumpster and our of the neighborhood. They have also found a destination for our unsaleable books and will be delivering them to Reedley in the future where they will be sold or recycled.


Dean continues to recycle the cans and plastic bottles that are dropped off at the church. It is pretty safe to count on us being there Tuesday through Friday mornings and Saturdays until 3 if you would like to drop off your recycling.


Wednesday evening Rob prepared a delicious meal of Rigatoni and meatballs with a salad and Dawn Muenster’s homemade cookies for dessert. Mel, Sam and Kent helped in the kitchen and Kent and Ronda delivered meals to those who could not make it to the church to pick them up. We are ready to go with our first Saturday midday meal as soon as the weather cooperates. All the Saturday cooking is on the barbeque so we are only able to serve when it is not raining or snowing.


Leak Stoppers has finished the repairs on the roof over the thrift store hallway. Unfortunately we lost a lot of shingles on the thrift store roof in the windstorm and we trying to figure out what  the best options might be. It may very well be time for a new roof.


If you have misplaced the links for our zoom fellowship time or our zoom coffee and prayer time Wednesday mornings, I will include them below. We hope to see you whenever it fits your schedule and look forward to when we can gather in person again.  In the meantime, please stay safe and continue to take good care of each other.


With love and appreciation,

Pastor Jim


Topic: Coffee and Prayer Time



Meeting ID: 880 8556 6735

Passcode: prayer

One tap mobile

+16699009128,,88085566735#,,,,*240881# US (San Jose)

+13462487799,,88085566735#,,,,*240881# US (Houston)



This week's Service

February 14 2020


FWS#2140       “Since Jesus Came Into My Heart”

FWS#2208       “Guide My Feet”


Opening Prayer

O Holy One,
on mountaintops and valley floors
you reveal to us the light of your love.
Our hearts desire is to bask in the amazing glory
of the divine presence.
With each encounter we are changed and transformed.
Draw us nearer
that we might receive a double portion of your Holy Spirit.
Help us, O Holy One, to live our lives as a reflection of divine glory.
May we walk among our brothers and sister as a blessing,
bearing light into dark places,
hope to displace despair,
and love that casts out hate.
Our world is hurting
and we need the followers of Jesus to follow more closely.
Maybe then we will hear your voice speaking to us and saying,
… “listen to my Child, the Beloved!” Amen.


— from Witness to Wonders: Service Prayers for Transfiguration Sunday, written by the Rev. Madison Shockley, pastor of Pilgrim United Church of Christ in Carlsbad, CA. Posted on the United Church of Christ’s Worship Ways website.
Reposted: https://re-worship.blogspot.com/2012/01/invocation-transfiguration.html



Response:  FWS#2272            “Holy Ground”

We are standing on holy ground,

and I know that there are angels all around;

let us praise Jesus now;

we are standing in his presence on holy ground.


2 Kings 2:1-12
Now when the LORD was about to take Elijah up to heaven by a whirlwind, Elijah and Elisha were on their way from Gilgal.  Elijah said to Elisha, "Stay here; for the LORD has sent me as far as Bethel." But Elisha said, "As the LORD lives, and as you yourself live, I will not leave you." So they went down to Bethel.
The company of prophets who were in Bethel came out to Elisha, and said to him, "Do you know that today the LORD will take your master away from you?" And he said, "Yes, I know; keep silent." Elijah said to him, "Elisha, stay here; for the LORD has sent me to Jericho." But he said, "As the LORD lives, and as you yourself live, I will not leave you." So they came to Jericho.

The company of prophets who were at Jericho drew near to Elisha, and said to him, "Do you know that today the LORD will take your master away from you?" And he answered, "Yes, I know; be silent."
Then Elijah said to him, "Stay here; for the LORD has sent me to the Jordan." But he said, "As the LORD lives, and as you yourself live, I will not leave you." So the two of them went on.

Fifty men of the company of prophets also went, and stood at some distance from them, as they both were standing by the Jordan. Then Elijah took his mantle and rolled it up, and struck the water; the water was parted to the one side and to the other, until the two of them crossed on dry ground. When they had crossed, Elijah said to Elisha, "Tell me what I may do for you, before I am taken from you." Elisha said, "Please let me inherit a double share of your spirit."


He responded, "You have asked a hard thing; yet, if you see me as I am being taken from you, it will be granted you; if not, it will not." As they continued walking and talking, a chariot of fire and horses of fire separated the two of them, and Elijah ascended in a whirlwind into heaven.

Elisha kept watching and crying out, "Father, father! The chariots of Israel and its horsemen!" But when he could no longer see him, he grasped his own clothes and tore them in two pieces.


Special Music

Mark 9:2-9

Six days later, Jesus took with him Peter and James and John, and led them up a high mountain apart, by themselves. And he was transfigured before them, and his clothes became dazzling white, such as no one on earth could bleach them.  And there appeared to them Elijah with Moses, who were talking with Jesus.

Then Peter said to Jesus, "Rabbi, it is good for us to be here; let us make three dwellings, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah." He did not know what to say, for they were terrified.

Then a cloud overshadowed them, and from the cloud there came a voice, "This is my Son, the Beloved; listen to him!"  Suddenly when they looked around, they saw no one with them any more, but only Jesus.

As they were coming down the mountain, he ordered them to tell no one about what they had seen, until after the Son of Man had risen from the dead.




"Response: FWS#2164                    “Sanctuary”

Lord, prepare me to be a sanctuary, pure and holy, tried and true.

With thanksgiving, I’ll be a living sanctuary for you.

 Lord, prepare me to be a sanctuary, pure and holy, tried and true.

With thanksgiving, I’ll be a living sanctuary for you.


Today’s message:

FWS#2218    “You Are Mine”

Offering Invitation

Offering Prayer

God of Transformation, we come together as those who have met you on the mountaintop. We have each had our holy encounters with you; and in those moments, we have wanted to stay on the mountain and retreat from the world. We know that is our longing, not yours. So, as we offer our gifts this morning in response to your blessings in our life, remind us that our mission begins as we leave this place, and help us hold our memories of those mountaintop encounters with you in our hearts. We pray boldly in Jesus’ name. Amen. 



Community Prayers


Pastoral Prayer

Lord’s Prayer

Response:  FWS#2200    “O Lord, Here My Prayer”

Oh Lord, hear my prayer. O Lord, hear my prayer.

When I call, answer me. O Lord, hear my prayer.

O Lord, hear my prayer. Come and listen to me.


Closing Hymn     FWS#2173            “Shine, Jesus, Shine”


Go now, and speak of what you have seen of God’s glory.
Do not cling to the holy moments
when heaven overshadows you,
but as the Lord lives, listen to Christ and follow him
from the places of revelation
to the places of mission.

And may God shine the light of glory into your hearts.
May Christ be with you and never leave you.
And may the Spirit renew the image of God within you.

We go in peace to love and serve the Lord,
........In the name of Christ. Amen.


© 2003 Nathan Nettleton http://www.laughingbird.net/
Reposted: https://re-worship.blogspot.com/2012/01/benediction-transfiguration-sunday.html


Response    FWS#2224            “Make Us One”

Make us one, Lord, make us one;

Holy Spirit, make us one.

Let your love flow so the world will know

We are one in you.


Proudly created with Wix.com by Kent Byers

  • c-facebook