May 2017

Music News

Much music complemented the worship services of Holy Week. For Palm Sunday the Celebration Bells, directed by Ted Perrill, rang a solo piece and played with two hymns. Audrey Lee played organ with the Choir, conducted by Cathy Perrill. On Maundy Thursday, choir anthems and congregational hymns were sung amongst scriptures throughout the Tenebrae service. The Good Friday service was a special time to worship with people from other churches in the community. The chimes, played by Lou McGonagle, began the Easter service. It was a joyous celebration of the resurrection of our Lord!

On Monday, April 10, during Holy Week, the Bells and Choir lost one of their own: Julie McNabb. Sometimes key phrases of songs come to mind in circumstances such as the loss of a loved one. The following are from “In the Bulb There Is a Flower” by Natalie Sleeth that the Choir sang at Julie’s memorial service: “In our end is our beginning,” “in our life, eternity,” “in our death, a resurrection.” May these words help to comfort in the loss of Julie. She will be missed very much, and her spirit will be with us always.

Lori Bourret

Calvary’s Youth Ministry Ignite the Flame

April was a busy month for Calvary’s Youth Group — practicing for their Variety Show skit, hosting an Easter ice cream social for the Suffield House nursing home residents, serving at Calvary’s Easter breakfast, and more!

Teens traveled to Bloomfield to watch the film Facing Darkness about the Samaritan’s Purse ebola crisis efforts, and to Windsor for a night of worship with the band Road to Damascus (who they know from their yearly Monadnock Winter Retreat).

Extending the theme of this year’s Retreat — identity — the group has been memorizing Ephesians 2:10: “For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”

People Enjoying People (PEP) Luncheon

When: Tuesday, May 16
Time: 12:00
Bring: A potluck dish to share or dessert
Speaker: Sara Mulvihill with Freedom Guide Dogs

Freedom Guide Dogs is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization based in upstate New York which breeds, raises, trains, and places guide dogs with the blind and visually impaired through a distinctive program called Hometown Training. Freedom Guide Dogs’ services are available to people in the Eastern United States at no cost. In addition, they will place a dog anywhere in the continental U.S. with a veteran who has lost vision (total or partial) in the line of duty. They primarily use Labrador Retrievers, but they also train smooth-coat Collies, Standard Poodles, American White Shepherds, and Barbets to better meet the individual needs of their clients. Some of their clients have multiple disabilities. They also have an active community of puppy raisers, volunteers, and clients throughout the State of Connecticut. Come and meet Abigail, a 13-month-old yellow lab, and Griffin, a 4-month-old yellow lab.

Hugs ‘n Hope

Support & Fellowship Group for Women who are Widowed, Divorced or Single

Girls just want to have fun, so come join us for a girl’s night out for dinner at 99 Restaurant & Pub in Enfield.

WHEN: Friday, May 12, 2017
TIME: 5:30 p.m.

Meet at the restaurant. Contact Janice Singer if you have questions (860) 763-2936.

Deacons’ Corner

Blessed are we who believe, but have not yet seen! The Board of Deacons would once again like to share its gratitude for the outpouring of blessings to our homebound through the beautiful lilies and daffodils to brighten their day. Thank you to all who donated their Easter flowers to the deacons for dispersal to others. Also, thank you for the abundance of love and food offerings for the memorial of our beloved sister in Christ, Julie McNabb, who will be deeply missed. May God bless you each and every day for your acts of kindness and mercy! May we continue to follow Christ’s example!

Reflections by Dot Cutter: Springtime Trickery

Does your mind ever play tricks on you? Mine does, especially in the early springtime. Snow has disappeared. The grass has greened up nicely. Forsythia bushes and daffodils wave in the breezes. Ah yes, this is at last what I’ve been waiting for! And, I muse, soon the blossoming trees will display their splendor just before the tulips and lilacs burst forth. Such a soliloquy I can enjoy for the moment. My mind races with enthusiasm as I excitedly venture off the patio to tour my gardens up close and personal. And then — reality sets in to diminish my exuberance just a tad. No, nothing has been removed; rather it’s what has been added. On closer inspection I see leaves and sticks, pinecones, weeds, lawn grass that has intruded, even moss!! Where did all this mess come from? We cleaned up so thoroughly last fall. Adding insult to injury, I find our tulips and newly emerging hostas have already been munched by hungry deer and bunnies who got to them sooner than we did with the spray repellant.

Springtime is decidedly not a season for a gardener to sit back and simply enjoy what comes. It is instead a time to be persistent, to adapt, and to modify schedules and activities to ever changing needs. Always there is the yearly routine of removing winter debris, loosening the soil around perennials as they pop up, fertilizing everything, applying weed retardant, pruning deadwood and broken branches from roses and flowering shrubs, digging up and dividing plants that have grown too large, replacing others, edging and mulching. And then always the possibility of inclement weather on days I have set aside to work outside which can easily tip the scale, and definitely not in my favor. Next comes a little spring trickery — some springs are unseasonably cool and rainy so tender roots may rot in the ground; other years, rainfall is at such a deficit that the soil is powdery dry, requiring frequent watering. Then there are the battles with insects and plant diseases. Some years, after all that work, the results are beautiful and rewarding. But there are other years when the results have been dismal and pitiful. The rewards are not always what we would have liked or have imagined back in the planning stages.

And aren’t our personal lives very similar? I find nature often mirrors our life situations. We have blessed times, periods of calm and harmony, great joys, and devastating lows. Life doesn’t always follow our anticipated pattern, does it? We can experience tremendous surprises that have us elated. But we also have to find our way through dark valleys of despair and sadness, along twisting paths of confusion, setbacks and shattered dreams. However, along any path, we have Jesus’ assurance that we don’t walk it alone; for He said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.”(Heb. 13:5) God created us to endure and spiritually prosper from life’s trials — even when it feels like we are crumbling inside. Each difficulty and every bit of confusion provides us with a fresh opportunity to connect with Jesus, however unwelcome we may find that challenge to be. With Jesus there are no failures, no defeats, just new opportunities to grow in our relationship with Him. His word will always “be a lamp unto my feet and a light unto our path” (Ps. 119:105).

Perhaps some of the best “fertilizer” for our souls and spirits comes from reviewing and remembering how complete God’s love for us truly is. Rom. 8:37 reminds us that “In all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us”. And vs. 38-39 gives us our part, “For I am persuaded (hold that confidence close and tightly) that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing can separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” And to sow just a few more positive seeds in our spiritual garden, Phil. 4:8 is priceless in its admonition, saying “Whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy — meditate on these things.” Then cap it off with your favorite praise song or hymn and see what a lovely spiritual garden springs forth — absolutely weed free!

Blessings,
Dot Cutter

May Celebrations

Birthdays

4 Beth Gillette
7 Sarah Fraher
9 Ruth DeBottis
13 Nathan Valle
15 Bob Clark, June Hamilton, Sandy Swan
20 Chris Ruoss
27 Dick Sterling
28 Jenn Clark
30 Myles Walsh
31 Douglas Brown

Anniversaries

5 Hal & Avis Hall (1962)
6 Lorri & Giovanny Valle (1988)

If you would like your birthday and/or anniversary to appear in the Crier—or if you have any corrections or edits to your information—please contact Corrine via our website or by calling the church office at 860-745-5211.