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    ReadSeptember 2021 Newsletter

    September 2021 Newsletter

    With What Shall/Must I Come


    Every professor at college and/or seminary was required to hand out a syllabus at the beginning of each semester. It would be a document containing a description of the course, reading list, rules and regulations, and assignments. Invariably, there would be at least one person who would ask the following: “How long do the papers have to be? Can they be double-spaced? How large/small can the margins be?”

    I suspect that the professors were a little offended and perhaps even annoyed at these questions, but the students (me being one of them) would always breathe a sigh of relief when those questions were asked. No one wanted to be the first to ask them, but we all wanted to know the answer. What is the least we have to do to get a good grade? Were we lazy? Perhaps, but I would like to believe that it was because of all the other things/classes in our lives. Freedom in one area or class would allow more time somewhere else.

    This need to prioritize is not unique to college/seminary life. We all complain about how busy we are, and we all search for ways to free up time. The irony is that technology was supposed to make life easier, but if anything, all our gadgets have increased the stress load.

    It is perhaps even more ironic to realize that stress – the need to discover the least one has to do to get by – is not unique to our time. The prophet Micah would ask, “With what shall I come before the Lord, and bow myself before God on high? Shall I come before him with burnt offerings, with calves a year old? Will the Lord be pleased with thousands of rams, with ten thousands of rivers of oil? Shall I give my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul” (Micah 6:6-7 NRSV)?

    The Rich Young Ruler would pose the same question to Jesus in Matthew 19:16, “Teacher, what good deed must I do to have eternal life” (NRSV)?

    There is a sad reality surrounding these questions in the context of our religious lives. They all speak of our relationship with God as being one of the many things we do. I am reminded of an illustration that one of my seminary professors gave. Dr. Stookey shared that many people think of their religious activity as a piece in the pie chart of life. It is right there beside the piece dedicated to their job, their leisure time, and/or their family time.

    He went on to say that this creates a problem, however. When religious activity is seen as one piece among many, the requirements that God places upon life become very heavy. We shrink away when we read in Micah 6: 8 that we are “to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with [our] God” (NRSV). We understand how the rich young ruler could turn and leave when Jesus responded to his question. We are tempted to do the same as we read, “[Sell] your possessions, and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; then come, follow me” (Matthew 16:21 NRSV).

    Yet, Dr. Stookey instructed us to not despair for there is good news. He said, “Rather than seeing your religious activities as one among many pieces in the pie chart of life, see your relationship with God in Christ as the crust that holds the pie together.”

    Yes, it does seem hard to come to God with all that we have and all that we are, but listen to the promise: [Do] not worry, saying, ‘What will we eat?’ or ‘What will we drink?’ or ‘What will we wear?’…[Indeed] your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But strive first for the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well” (emphasis added Matthew 6:31-33 NRSV).

    So, instead of seeking the path of least resistance, let’s see if God is true to God’s Word; let’s “taste and see [if] the Lord is good” (Psalm 34:8). Whatever we do, let us do so by seeking God first…

    I suspect that we will, indeed, find God true to God’s Word.

    Pastor Jim Lewis






    TUESDAY, AUGUST 10, 2021

    Bruce Silar: Welcome, and prayer, reading from Psalm 92: 1-8

    Minutes: Terri Mellinger – Motion by Jay Holcomb and a second by Donna Winter, approved as presented.

    PPR: Terri Mellinger- Meeting on August 12. Terri read cards from Jane Harrison and Greg Johnson.

    Trustees: Mike Herbst

    *Crack in parking lot – needs attention: waiting on an estimate. Jeff Miller has been working on filling the cracks. Jeff continues to work on the parking lot and will also work on the parsonage driveway.

    The rent for the Zion’s Hill property was received.

    Five window a/c units were donated to Bell Socialization Services.

    Safe deposit box: Do we need to rent one? Jim Gemmill has all the documents at this time. Brian suggested a 12x18 box. Brian will go to the Truist Bank in Red Lion to start the process. The four names on the signing card will be Mike, Bruce, Terri and David.

    Terri will check into getting the carpets and flooring cleaned.

    Pastor Jim asked a few questions concerning our budget, about the debt reduction fund, about Zion’s Hill property.

    Finance: Carl Belcher  - Income for July was up over June.

    Misc under Worship - $400 - copyright license fee was paid.

    Parsonage: Internet, cable, etc was down from last month.

    Total cost of A/C was $14,300.00 in parsonage.

    Current rate for mileage is .56 per mile. We will use the current federal rate and pay it once per month. Tina will need to turn in her mileage to David. Motion by Carl Belcher and second by Terri Mellinger. Approved.

    Motion to approve Treasurer’s Report by Mike Herbst and second by Jay Holcomb.. Approved as presented.

    Should we go back to every other month Church Council meetings? Yes

    Zoom meetings? We will move forward with hybrid meetings.

    Should we require masks again? Pastor Jim would like us to be adults, if anyone would like to wear one, please do but unless our Bishop requires it, we won’t. We will put a sign on the front door stating this. Please stay home if you are sick.

    Items to keep in thoughts and prayer for our Planning Retreat this summer: Bruce and Jay will be working with Pastor Jim to plan this retreat.

    **Church property: Zion House – renovations? Zion’s Hill – sell, keep, build?

    **Reaching our community

    **What is the future of our church?

    Pastor Jim closed us with prayer.

    Next meeting: October 12



    Choir Practices Begin

    BELL CHOIR REHEARSAL - begins Sunday, September 5 at 8:00 am.  

    CHILDREN’S CHOIR REHEARSAL will begin after Labor Day on Wednesday, September 8 at 5:15 p.m. lasting for 1/2 hour (30 min). 3-year-olds are welcome up to 5th grade. Boys & girls who like to sing are welcome.   


    YOUTH CHOIR is a vocal choir and also a chime choir. They will rehearse on Sunday evening beginning on September 12 before youth fellowship at 5:30 p.m. in the sanctuary for 30 min. Any middle or high school student is welcome. 


    The ADULT CHOIR will begin rehearsing on Wednesday, September 22 @ 6:45 PM in the church choir loft. If you are interested in singing in that choir, please come that evening as we meet and begin rehearsing. We generally rehearse two to three times a month (sometimes less as the summer months approach and not at all from June through August). We sing on the second Sunday of each month during the 10:30 worship service and during additional services that are scheduled during the Advent/Christmas and Lenten/Easter seasons. Come and make a joyful noise to the Lord!


    United Methodist Women

    United Methodist Women will hold its monthly meeting on Tuesday, September 21 @ 7:00 PM in the rear of the church. We will continue with our study of Women in the New Testament using Luke 7:36-50 as a background scripture for chapter 4, A Sinful Woman, A Forgiven Heart. Elaine Hengst will lead our study that evening. In addition, Laurie and Christine will be attending the York District UMW Annual Day on Saturday, September 25 at Winterstown UM Church. On Saturday, November 6, the Susquehanna Conference UMW Spiritual Enrichment Day will be held at the Fishing Creek Salem UM Church in Goldsboro at 9:00 AM. The study theme that day will be Championing Mental Wellness. To help defray the cost for the speaker, materials, a light breakfast and a bag lunch, all attendees are asked to pay a registration fee of $20. We will have registration forms available at the September monthly meeting for persons interested in attending this program.





    A Note of Thanks

    I want to thank all for your prayers during my recent back surgery. It is comforting to know that there are many who are concerned about you!

    God Bless You! Mary Lou Stein


    Attention Parents of children aged three

    to children in grade 5:

    Beginning Sunday, September 5, 2021, Bible instruction will resume during the traditional Sunday School hour, 9:00 to 10 a.m., downstairs in the large classroom at the end of the hallway. The same lesson will be taught during Kids’ Worship Hour, 10:30 – 11:30 a.m. Children may attend one or both sessions each week. Children will be excused from the Dawning Grace service and the Traditional Worship service, after the first song, to report to the downstairs classroom. Parents should pick up their children from the classroom at the end of the service.


    Dawning Grace

    Dawning Grace will begin on Sunday, September 26 with Pastor Jim giving the message each week instead of a video message. Thank the Lord!

    We will continue with young people as worship leaders and contemporary songs, prayers, scripture and some discussion.  Come and join us at this service at 9 AM. There will be Kids Worship Hour for any children who attend this service also.




















    Zion United Methodist

    Youth Group Presents…

    Hoss’s Community Night

    Sunday, September 19, 2021


    Dear Friend of Zion United Methodist Church Youth Group:

    We are excited to team up with Hoss's Steak and Sea House to raise money for a very worthy cause. Please consider visiting the Hoss's location(s) listed below on 9/19/2021 to aid us in raising money to benefit Zion United Methodist Church Youth Group.

    Print this and present it on 9/19/2021 at Hoss's in York East

    Hoss's will then donate 20%* or 25%** of your total check paid to Zion United Methodist Church Youth Group

    *To qualify for the 20% payout, our group must have a minimum of $300.00 in total pre-tax food and beverage sales.

    **To qualify for the 25% payout, our group must have a minimum of $1,200.00 in total pre-tax food and beverage sales.

    This applies to a one-day, single location, pre-scheduled event. The purchase of gift cards is not included as part of your organization’s community fundraising totals.


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