A weekly e-mail from
Plymouth Congregational Church
UNITED CHURCH OF CHRIST
232 E. Onondaga Street, Syracuse NY | 13202 | 315 474 4836
Welcoming All, Growing in Faith, Working for Justice and Peace
Preparing for Sunday’s Worship
We celebrate Easter with an intergenerational service.
This Sunday will be one big Hallelujah at Plymouth, starting with Mozart’s famous “Alleluia” sung by soprano Mary Rose Go and ending with everyone singing Handel’s “Hallelujah Chorus.” In between, two children’s choirs will sing, a brass choir will accompany the choir, and you’ll hear a new jazz arrangement of “Christ the Lord Is Risen Today.” Of course you’ll get to sing your favorite Easter hymns accompanied by brass, timpani and our great Plymouth organ. After grabbing a quick coffee, you’ll want to hear the second annual Plymouth Bells Easter Concert.
Focus Scripture John 20:1-18
1. Why do you think Mary Magdalene, rather than, say, Peter, was chosen to be the witness to the resurrection?
2. What do you expect from life? What do you dare hope for?
4. Were you hesitant, or eager, to share what you experienced?
5. What evidence did you need in order to trust in the good news? What did you need to “see” in order to “go tell”?
Reflection by Kate Huey
Saying yes and saying no
That sounds as if there is more for us to do than merely take good news back to the others: it’s a call for our whole lives. The world should be able to see in our lives our own passion for the truth that Jesus is risen and that God has begun the “Great Cleanup,” the one that won’t happen without us. If we go back to our lives tomorrow as if nothing has changed, what then have we really experienced?
– Kate Huey is dean of the Amistad Chapel and minister for stewardship, scripture, and discipleship with the United Church of Christ. To read her entire reflection, go to http://www.ucc.org/feed-your-spirit/weekly-seeds/easter-sunday-1.html
In Our Church Community
The next Forum, after worship Sunday, April 27, will be a volunteer fair with representatives from 10 to 12 local organizations on hand to promote volunteer opportunities around Syracuse. For more information, contact Kelly Tooley.
Red Cross Blood Drive
Plymouth will be hosting its next Red Cross blood drive on Monday, April 28, from 11:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. in Memorial Hall. We encourage Plymouth members and friends to support this community effort.
Reception for Our Iraqi Family
A reception in honor of our Iraqi refugee family will be held at 11:30 a.m. Sunday, May 4, at Plymouth Church. Plan to attend this special time of welcome for Hussein and Dhikra and their children. We have invited Hussein’s parents and two brothers of Hussein to join us. His parents and brothers have been in the States since August.
Ushers and Greeters Wanted
It may look as if the people up front are the ones that make the service go, but most of the work of creating our worship services is done by you. Two relatively easy, but extremely important, jobs are greeting in the bell tower entry before the service and serving as an usher during the service.
If you can smile and shake hands, and know where the restrooms are well enough to tell somebody how to find them, then you’re ready to greet. If you can hand out bulletins, help people find seats, and move safely around the worship space, you’re ready to be an usher.
We’ll give you all the training you need and great partners as well. To sign up as a greeter, email Craig Greczyn at firstname.lastname@example.org. To be an usher, email Jared Titus at email@example.com.
Join an Evaluation Feedback Group
During the next several months, Plymouth’s evaluation team will be holding “Completing the Circle” meetings of feedback groups to evaluate how Quinn and the congregation are living out Plymouth’s vision of its ministry. Members are invited to sign up for these sessions, which will last 75 minutes. To sign up, contact George Bain or the church office. If you have any questions, contact any member of the evaluation team: George Bain, P.V. George, Amy Goodall-Ayres, Brenda Hartman-Souder, Rich Jaeger, Carol Johnson, Sam Kraemer or Dorothea Nelson.
Plymouth on YouTube
Did you know that Plymouth Church has a YouTube channel? You can find recordings of sermons given at Plymouth on it, along with some of the choir’s anthems. Our YouTube channel is one way that Plymouth is reaching out to folks who missed a Sunday or who want to listen again to a sermon or anthem, and letting the wider community and world know about us. You can search YouTube for Plymouth Church Syracuse or use this link: http://www.youtube.com/channel/UCu4UIrL4OR_uGDy8EkopF_A.
You can also listen to any sermon since November 28, 2012, on Plymouth’s website at http://plymouthuccsyracuse.org/sermons-from-plymouth/.
Save the World with a Casserole
The Care Team is initiating a project to gather and store food at the church that can be taken to people as needs arise. The Plymouth Women have already contributed some soups and casseroles. The food (dated and labeled) will be stored in the freezer. When there is an illness or other emergency, we will be ready to provide a meal. If you wish to contribute to this effort, please contact Ellen Heinrichs. If you become aware of a need and/or would deliver a meal, please contact Quinn or any member of the Care Team.
Plymouth Is on Facebook
If you are on Facebook and you haven’t “liked” the church yet, please do! http://www.facebook.com/#1/groups/109573419061867
Help Plymouth When You Shop
GoodSearch.com has added a new feature to expand the ways you can shop and donate a percentage of each purchase to Plymouth Church. You can use Goodswipe, a credit card rewards program. By linking your card with one signup, you can earn donations to Plymouth for every in-store purchase at 50,000 stores like Gap, Sears, Kmart, 7-Eleven, Burger King, and Dunkin’ Donuts. Goodswipe uses bank-level encryption to keep your information safe. To learn more about Goodswipe, go to http://www.goodsearch.com/goodswipe?spMailingID=6991886&spUserID=MjE1NDUwNzIyMAS2&spJobID=89074794&spReportId=ODkwNzQ3OTQS1
When shopping online, you can use GoodShop.com and benefit Plymouth. For more information on that, go to www.goodshop.com, enter Plymouth Congregational UCC in the box labeled “Who do you GoodShop for.”
The Rev. Quinn Caldwell is available to respond to emergencies, to visit those with special needs, or for conversation and prayer about whatever’s on your mind or heart. You can reach him at 315-474-4836 or firstname.lastname@example.org. In an emergency, you can reach him at 617-851-0158.
Food Pantry Offerings
The Food Pantry requests your participation in its “toiletries of the month” collection. Contributions of shampoo are being gathered in April. Financial contributions are welcomed, and the Food Pantry is always happy to receive personal products. If you stay at a hotel and don’t use the shampoo, soap, lotion or other complimentary products, please save them.
The Week Ahead
Mon. April 21 The Plymouth Story deadline
In the Wider Community
Community Garden Work Day
Plymouth members and friends are invited to the West Newell Street Community Garden on Saturday, April 19, for a work day from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. to help clean up the garden and spread manure, compost and mulch. All workers will be invited to share a barbecue at the end of the day. For more details, call Mable Wilson at 471-7063.
Senior Brunch and Forum
The Ida Benderson Seniors Action Group invites you to a Senior Brunch and Forum Friday, April 25, from 10 a.m. to noon in Memorial Hall. All older adults, family members and those interested in senior concerns and services are welcome and encouraged to attend. Brunch will be catered by the Mission Restaurant. (Freewill offering only.) Speakers will include Lisa Alford, commissioner on aging and youth of Onondaga County, as well as representatives of SAGE Upstate, FOCUS Syracuse, and Catholic Charities of Onondaga County. Nader Maroun of Syracuse Common Council will moderate. There will be time for questions and discussion, so come and share your concerns, hopes and vision for a more senior-friendly community. Space is limited; RSVP to Denise Nepveux at 315-223-2480 or email@example.com to reserve your seat.
ACTS Spring Banquet
ACTS (the Alliance of Communities Transforming Syracuse) holds its annual spring banquet Tuesday, April 29, at Drumlins. A social hour starts at 6 p.m. and the dinner and program will follow at 6:45 p.m. Tickets are $60 apiece, with $35 of that amount tax-deductible. For more information, contact Gert Danzy at 491-7650.
InterFaith Works Award Dinner
The annual InterFaith Works Leadership Award Dinner will be held Tuesday, May 6, at 5:30 p.m. at the SRC Arena at Onondaga Community College. Plymouth Church would like to support this worthwhile event and fill a table with 10 people. The cost of a ticket is $75, but if you would like to attend and need some financial support, the church can help. Send your reservation to the church office as soon as possible. Questions? Call Chris Welch at 729-6521.
Welcome the Stranger
Immigrants Rights Sunday is May 4.
Unity of Faith Marks Marathon Anniversary
Commentary by Nancy Taylor of Old South Church (we often sing her words for the doxology). http://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2014/04/13/faith-old-south-church-boston-bombing-marathon-column/7675627/
Evangelicals Debate Boundaries over Sexuality
World Vision reverses course on recognizing employees’ same-sex marriages.
How to take care of your spirit the six days of each week you don’t go to worship? The UCC has launched a new area of its web site designed to support people in their individual spiritual journeys: Feed Your Spirit. Daily prayers, a biblical personality test, advice column from God-lovers, and magic 8-ball await. Check it out at www.ucc.org/feed-your-spirit.
God in Your Inbox
The Stillspeaking Daily Devotional is written by UCC pastors and leaders, including Quinn Caldwell. Subscribers are sent a daily email containing a Scripture passage, short reflection, and a prayer. Sign up at http://www.ucc.org/feed-your-spirit/daily-devotional/.
Joys and Concerns
Alice Allen, recovering at home after a brief hospitalization …