A Message from sunjae

A Message from sunjae

Jul 04

1 May God’s love and peace be with you. There is an experience that we all share in common without any exception. We just get to know each other. Some of you may see me for the first time in this worship service video. Nevertheless, there is an experience that we share in common. It is the experience of the new normal. It is the experience of a sudden worldwide change. Last March, I had a meeting with SPRC members for the first time. I was very grateful for the conversation that we shared. I was very excited about the new appointment. After the meeting, coming back to MA where I used to live, I had to call my church members. And I said we have to cancel Sunday service. That was the beginning. I thought I could have in-person service anytime soon. But, it was not the case. Since this situation began, there have been many changes that we needed to get familiar with. For example, we needed to get familiar with being at home. As some of you may know, I had to keep my quarantine as I moved from a different state. So, I wanted to visit some famous places in Vermont before my ministry starts on July 1st, but I couldn’t. I only imagine the difficulty of those who are not able to go outside because of one’s health condition. And, we had to get familiar with using technologies like Zoom. My wife Myungso came to serve two churches in Middlebury and East Middlebury, and she is having worship service on Zoom. This is unprecedented. And, we needed to be familiar with wearing a mask wherever we go. Have you ever received a mask as a gift from someone? I had never received a mask as a gift before. But, when pandemic started, my parents living in South Korea sent me a bunch of masks as a gift. So, I shared them with essential workers. I cannot forget how much they appreciated about the masks. During this unprecedented time, we just started working on another big change. You, as a church and I, as a pastor, are experiencing a big change which is the pastoral transition. I think some of you might be surprised as a different person is leading this service. And this transition is such a big change for me as well. There...

About the Crisis at Our Southern Border

About the Crisis at Our Southern Border

Jul 04

A God of love is a God of justice. From ancient times the Jewish people were urged to live out the golden rule, even if this means helping an enemy in need (Proverbs 25:21). Jesus took this further in stating that whenever you do good for the least among you, you do this for him. I know many hearts are broken by our situation at our southern U.S. border. UMCOR (United Methodist Committee on Relief) has handed out over 46,000 health kits through church-run ministries at our border with Mexico. UMCOR is not allowed to give these items to government agencies. Go to the websites for Senators Leahy, Sanders and Rep. Welch and communicate your concerns. We will also put out blank envelopes in the pews if you wish to donate to UMCOR’s work with immigrants. Remember that July 4th celebrates the birth of an immigrant nation. The bulk of Americans had at least one of their forebears immigrate to our country at some point. Many of our ancestors left dangerous or difficult situations to start over. Grace and Peace,...

God Help Us!

God Help Us!

Apr 27

Good news!  A good God, created us good for a good purpose. God also created us free, not wanting robots.  We often use our freedom for selfish choices.  We see this in the daily news.  We and our world are a mess. God help us! And God does! God sends us Jesus, to save us.  Jesus prays, studies scripture and serves others daily.  He worships on the Sabbath, he creates community.  He goes to the cross to demonstrate the depth of God’s love. God raises Jesus from the dead as the ultimate sign that his love is stronger than sin and death.  Love – not hate, life – not death, and true community – not selfish tribalism wins. Easter reveals God’s love is unconditional.  We can’t earn this love, we can only receive it as a gift. We can’t earn it by following a bunch of rules.  Salvation is the relationship of trusting God.   The only rule now is, Love God, and neighbor as yourself.  The best way to do this is connecting with God’s love by daily prayer, Bible study,  service, and weekly worship with others.  God is eager to transform us, and to work through our faithful community to reach the world.   Happy Easter!   Pastor...

Lenten Message from Pastor Kim

Lenten Message from Pastor Kim

Mar 07

Christians use this time to seek to grow in love and hope as Christ’s disciples.  What makes that happen for you?  It could be making a commitment to Sunday worship, daily Bible reading and prayer, weekly study group, or service to others.  Take up something that draws you closer to Christ.  See our Website Next Steps section for devotional suggestions.  Or borrow an NT Wright commentary in Fellowship Hall to read through a book of the New Testament with a few short pages of commentary.  Or give up something that is drawing you away from Christ.  Give up worry, fear, hating or judging others, spending too much, nursing rather than dealing with anger, inability to forgive self or others, any addiction – we all have addictions – that keeps you from being your...

Partnerships During the Holidays

Partnerships During the Holidays

Dec 13

It is celebration time. We have wonderful partnerships that make holidays bright. This year our church family gave everything needed for seven complete Thanksgiving dinners and an extra turkey. The DCF office that we coordinate these with sent huge “thanks!” Donations from church members and community members will help us do over 40 Christmas gifts for children, teens and others in need.  Our Old Hollow Neighborhood group is now bringing food for our food shelf every time they meet. We received another touching thank you from the HOPE Christmas shop for the Wildberries towel sets. Our  Christmas carolers were well received at The Arbors and Pillsbury.  We also got smiles from Weston Spooner and Mary Lou Payne.   All these activities add up to a very meaningful Christmas. Through service and worship we get to sing God’s praises in sending us Jesus, our Savior. As John Wesley loved to say, “The best of all is God is with us.” Merry Christmas, Pastor Kim Youth Shopping for Christmas Gifts for Youth in...

Wrapping People in the Warmth of Christ’s Love

Wrapping People in the Warmth of Christ’s Love

Nov 16

Wrapping people in the warmth of Christ’s love.  That could be one of the themes of our holiday efforts.  New people will try us around Thanksgiving and Christmas as they seek a deeper meaning to the seasons. Make sure you welcome them after worship. The director of the HOPE Christmas shop for families in need is new, but she had already heard about our towel ministry.  Our towels are famous because they are such a warm, practical and beautiful gift. Those who run the shop report they don’t last long.  More people wrapped in Jesus love by your giving. Owls team planned it and lots of folks showed up Nov. 9th for pizza, fun and service as we made 150 Health kits.  Health kits are part of how our United Methodist Committee on Relief is present for those surviving natural disaster or war.  Thanksgiving is a special time of gratitude. For the first time our church family gave absolutely every item needed from the turkeys to the pies for nine families in need.  You wrapped them in caring with your over the top generosity. That is something to be truly grateful for.           Peace, Pastor...