Happenings at an inner city church in Allentown

Archive for June, 2011

Saint Pio Centre and Museum

   On the first day of vacation, I went to one of my favorite places to visit – the Saint Padre Pio Centre and Museum.  The center is located off of Rt. 100 South, on Barto Rd., Barto,  PA.    If you have never been there, and are in need of a peaceful, quiet place that’s free, check it out.                                                                                                    

    The rolling hills of Barto, the sacred statues with thousands of prayer requests, rosaries, the chapel, the gift center and museum make this place very sacred.  It’s true I am a Pastor in the United Church of Christ and not catholic, but I do have a love for Saint Francis and Saint Pio.  This center however is about Saint Pio, his life, his miracles, and his healings.  The museum even has a video which I recommend watching as it tells about his life along with the many he healed.

    If you are in need of a quiet place to rest, to gather your thoughts, to reflect, then think about coming to the Saint Padre Pio Centre and Museum.  There are benches at various places for you to sit and just be. 

   PRAY, HOPE AND DON’T WORRY – one of the sayings of Saint Pio.

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Home Sweet Home

   How do we handle it or how do we protect ourselves, our families, and our homes when we’ve been burglarized?   This question comes way to close to home as I think about my next-door neighbor whose home was burglarized yesterday afternoon. 

   The policeman who came to speak with me and other neighbors told us to be on the alert, keep everything locked up and be on watch for anything out of the ordinary.  The burglars are believed to have been interrupted either by my leaving at 1:55PM or the owner coming home at 3PM.  And since they didn’t get what they wanted – we were all told they would be back.

    It really is scary when I think about it, both for our neighbors and for us, Stan and I.  Because other than the same neighbor almost having their truck stolen from their driveway about two years ago, we’ve really not had any problems for over 25 years since we moved in.                                             
    We all felt safe living here, but now we question it.  Even though my home was not broken into, my sense of safety, of a safe haven has been altered.  So what to do?   How do we keep our homes and those in them safe? 

   One statement comes to mind from Joyce Meyer’s book, “Power Thoughts”:         1)  I will not live in fear.

   I also try to remember the verse from Joshua 1:9:  “Have I not commanded you?  Be strong and of good courage; be not frightened, neither be dismayed; for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”

    As I work through what I am feeling, maybe my sharing will help you in what you face in your life.   Aloha (the breath of God is in our presence).

For Sunday, June 26, 2011

Sermon Title:   “God Will Provide”

Scripture:   Genesis 22:1-14

The near sacrifice of Isaac is one of the stories of our faith that is difficult to read and understand.   We are left with questions such as:  How could a father presume to do such a thing?  What kind of God demands such a sacrifice?     If your interest is peaked, come to worship on Sunday at 9:30AM in the Fellowship Hall.   There will also be a time of healing and blessing.

From the sermon on June 19, 2011 – to answer the question from last week’s post; What is a disciple?  A disciple is a person who does what he or she does for the sake of Jesus Christ so that Jesus may be seen in and through all that they do.  Our job description as a church and as a Christian is to make disciples, baptize and teach.

Thought for the Week:   LOVE is an act of faith.

Let us pray:  Dear Lord, who blesses all with love.  Please send your spirit from above, and gently guide my willing mind, your will for me that I may find.  Help me walk in your path today, and be your servant.  This, I pray.  Amen.

Pastor Lorraine

For Sunday, June 19, 2011

Sermon Title: “Our Job Description”

Scripture:  Matthew 28:16-20

In this passage, Jesus commissions his disciples to “go therefore and make disciples of all nations…”  The question is  “What is a disciple?”  Come join us as we celebrate the Sacrament of Holy Communion and Father’s Day by giving a special gift to not only father’s but to all men.  This service begins our summer worship at 9:30AM in the Fellowship Hall.

June 12, 2011  – the sermon focused on Pentecost, the inaugural event of the Christian church.   Even though the disciples were thought to be drunk when they spoke clearly in everyone’s language – they were not intoxicated but rather sharing about the new life in Christ Jesus.

Thought for the Week:  ASPIRE TO INSPIRE

Let us pray:  Gracious God, continue to bless us, and guide us as we strive to live as followers of Jesus Christ.  Amen.

Pastor Lorraine

Welcome to St. James UCC blog

Every week , there will be new posts: an online midweek message, Pastor Lorraine’s ramblings and a what’s happening at St. James (calendar of events).  The online midweek message includes the upcoming Sunday’s sermon title and theme; any special events that may be taking place; a one-to-two line quotation from the previous Sunday’s sermon; a thought for the week  as well as a brief prayer.