Building Community Retreat at Hidden Acres Mennonite Camp, September 7th–9th, 2018. A retreat for individuals with disabilities, their family, friends and supporters. Come join us for a weekend of relaxation, fellowship, worship, learning and fun! This year’s theme is “The Healing Power of Music” with resource person Sara Fretz. For more information or a registration form, visit the Hidden Acres website (www.hiddenacres.ca), email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 519-625-8602. To receive the early bird registration price, register by August 10th - registration deadline August 31st.
Go to www.canadianmennonite.org to read Mennonite church-related news. The website has some of the stories from Canadian Mennonite magazine, an online comments section and more news from the global church.
Relief Kits - We are extending our “Relief Kit” program to the end of August at the request of MCC. Their shipments to Jordan and Ukraine need supplies or funds to purchase supplies for over 2300 relief kits. Can you help? Any questions ask Ted S. Grow Hope - You may remember this MCC program from last year. Winter wheat and soy beans are planted on acreage supplied in the Vineland area by Larry and Marg Dyck. The crops that are harvested are given to the Canadian Food Grain Bank (CFGB) to help hungry people around the world. A sponsorship of $400. an acre provides funds to plant seeds and harvest the crop. Our federal government matches this $400. at 4 to 1. The $400. sponsorship becomes $2000. for CFGB. Last year we raised $2800. to sponsor 7 acres. Please remember that these donations are above budget and designate “Grow Hope” on your church envelope.
Summer Exchange Visits - August 5 and 19
Grace congregation will visit Good Shepherd for their service on August 5 at 10 am. Good Shepherd will visit Grace for our service on August 19 at 10 am. Please note the time changes.
Quakers in our Midst - June 24
This morning we welcome - as part of our series on "Expressions of the Spirit: Action and Contemplation" - members of Pelham Meeting, which happens to be the first Quaker group in Canada. They began meeting in the Short Hills/Pelham area in the early 1790s and were established formally in 1799. Today they meet for worship at the Niagara Arts Council Gallery on St. Paul Street in St. Catharines.
Friends (another term for Quakers) "commit ourselves to a way of worship which allows God to teach and transform us. We have found corporately that the Spirit, if rightly followed, will lead us into truth, unity and love: all our testimonies grow from this leading. Friends are encouraged to listen to each other in humility and understanding, trusting in the Spirit that goes beyond our human effort and comprehension." 
Across the Street and Around the World
MCC News – Relief Kits We will be supporting MCC during the months of June and July to purchase or raise funds to purchase components of the various Relief Kits which MCC provides around the world. There are several types of kits. An example of one is in your mailbox. Examples of all kits are on display on the MCC table in the lobby. If you wish to purchase some items, please place them in the box marked “Relief Kits” at the MCC table. We are reminded that with MCC’s purchasing power, a dollar goes a lot further if they purchase the items. Please consider a tax receiptable, above budget cash gift. Include with your weekly offering designated “Relief Kit MCC” or place in a church envelope and give to Ted S. Many thanks from MCC. https://mcccanada.ca/get-involved/kits/relief
Across the Street and Around the World - Posted June 6
Are you a treasure hunter? Do you long to participate in significant, life-fulfilling activities and make some new friends? Great volunteer opportunities exist for you at the Christian Benefit Thrift Shop – a top-rated Retail Shop in St. Catharines. All our proceeds support the work of MCC Ontario. High school students through to retirees are welcome to apply for shifts that suit your schedule! Current volunteer openings: Retail Associates, Receivers, Houseware sorters and Clothing sorters. Contact Tim Albrecht 905-682-8944.
Host Home wanted - for International Volunteer Exchange Program (IVEP) participant. Jeniffer, a young woman from Uganda, will be serving at the Christian Benefit Thrift Shop in St. Catharines from September 2018 – July 2019. Contact Tim Albrecht 905-682-8944
Radiant Care Pleasant Manor Farm Day! June 16, 10 am-1 pm Rain or Shine! We will be selling burgers and hotdogs, ice cream with local strawberries (if possible) and corn on the cob to raise money to support resident programming. Bring your lawn chairs.
Outreach and Insight
Pastoral Home Visits - "Dig out the cookies and iced tea, the pastor is coming this summer to visit thee!" Actually, this is just a note to let Grace folks know that through the next three months I will continue home visits with senior members I have not yet visited. You'll get a call at least 10 days in advance. Remember that these visits are not a requirement as I fully respect people's preference for home privacy. But the visits do represent an opportunity for me to deepen connections in the church, and I value them very much.
For those of you I have visited since I took up more of the Pastoral Care ministry at Grace last Fall, thanks for your hospitality. When this Fall rolls around, I'll reach out again. My hope is to connect annually with everyone who wants a visit. Please do feel free to request a visit at any time should you wish to share thoughts or concerns for support or prayer.
Finally, if you have 'unchurched' family members or acquaintances that would appreciate a friendly visit, I am pleased to make those connections too. And don't forget that we have Jan Steven serving now as community chaplain and she is open to referrals. Contact Jan or me to make that kind of connection. - Pastor Doug
Outreach and Insight
Sermon Series: Expressions of the Spirit - Through June, we will be informed and inspired by a number of speakers: June 3 - Pastor Dave and Muslim guests (our Bridge of Hope friends) will present insights into values Christians and Muslims share. Though beliefs differ, we work together in a spirit of seeking peace and justice. June 10 - We welcome Nina & David Drenth (former students of Pastor Doug) doing ministries in Hamilton that bring hope and support to marginalized people. Nina is an "Urban Monastic" - we'll find out what that means! June 17 - Jan Steven will speak on "community chaplaincy." June 24 - Quakers from St. Catharines will relate how they experience spiritual life. Quakers are called "Friends" - we'll find out why.
MCC News – Annual Relief Sale
The MCC Annual Relief Sale in New Hamburg takes place May 25 – 26. The “Make Coins Count” jug will be cleared today Sunday, May 20th after service. Please check your pockets and purses for a coin or two. MCC thanks you. Plan on attending the New Hamburg Mennonite Relief Sale May 25th & 26th. Pack up your plants and rhubarb to donate to the Plant Tent and Rhubarb Venue, and come see the vintage/restored Erb Transport trucks on site. Or bid on the 1959 Ferguson Tractor T035 or on one of the 211 beautiful handmade quilts. There is a lot to see and do! Hope to see you there.
Community Gardening Kits
Help MCC raise funds to send supplies and site-appropriate seeds to nine communities in Northern Ontario where the cost and availability of food is a serious issue. More info at mcco.ca/gardening-kits.
Junior Sunday School Dates and Supportive Listening
Junior Sunday School Dates: May 27, June 17, and July 15. Bring your grandkids, great grandkids, junior nieces and nephews. There will be gummy-worm rice-krispy squares!
Outreach and Supportive Listening - In your mailbox you will find a 'flyer' that we'd welcome you to follow up on and also share with family, friends and neighbours. It briefly explains a service of supportive listening that will be offered by Jan Steven of our congregation. It's an opportunity to share Grace's goodwill and God's love more widely in our church and beyond into the community.
So Many Ways to Serve!
Annual Spring Garden Sale – at the Christian Benefit Thrift Shop, Saturday, May 12 10am -2 pm. Lawn furniture, garden tools, plants and accessories. We will be accepting donations of potted plants in advance of this sale on Friday, May 11 (12 – 5 pm). We appreciate your support of the work of MCC.
New Hamburg Mennonite Relief Sale is coming up May 25th & 26th. Volunteers to help at the Sale are needed. A list of needs is available at our website (www.nhmrs.com) or contact email@example.com.
Grow Hope Niagara - Last year, through a special arrangement with the Government of Canada and Canadian Food Grains Bank, MCC received matching funds at 4:1 for food relief work in Africa. This means your support of $400/acre for 58.25 acres resulted in approximately $145,000 to help farmers grow more and better food. This year MCC is focusing on Conservation Agriculture (CA) projects. The matching on these projects is 3:1. MCC invites us to sign up as a sponsor again at $400 per acre. Cheques can be sent to MCC, 203-50 Kent Ave, Kitchener, ON N2G 3R1 with "Grow Hope Niagara" on the memo line, by phone at 1-800-313-6226 or online at mcco.ca/grow-hope-niagara.
Bridge of Hope Collection for New Syrian Family
2 Double beds Couch Side tables TV, TV Stand/Unit Lamp, light bulbs (new) Curtains for family room 3 Dressers Curtains with rods for bedrooms Tableware setting for 4-6 people, cutlery Baking dishes Food storage containers with lids Mixing/serving bowls Glasses and mugs Can opener Potholders Kettle Dish rags / dish towels Dish soap, bathroom and kitchen cleanser Vinegar, baking soda, club soda Laundry detergent Laundry basket 2 Waste baskets Mop or broom Trash bags Toilet paper Shampoo, soap, deodorant Toothbrushes, toothpaste Towels, Shower curtain, mat Sheet sets, blankets, comforters Pillows (new only) Alarm Clock (plug-in, not battery) Toys for 2-year-old girl
Donations of money always welcomed!
Focus Group on Sunday after church - We will continue our discussion of questions raised last week.
Women’s Chorus – Sunday, April 29–9:00 am; Sunday, May 6– 11:00 am; Sunday, May 13–9:00 am; Thursday, May 17–6:30 pm
Office Hours– Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday 9 am to 12 pm.
Across the Street and Around the World!
Bridge of Hope will be collecting items for the next family arriving within a few weeks. For a checklist of items needed check with Irmgard Penner or David Brubacher.
Niagara Area Mennonite Hymn Sing - Let’s sing together! Sunday, April 29, 6:30 p.m. at St. Catharines United Mennonite Church. We will sing hymns and songs from our faith heritage as well as feature the singing of our choral groups. Refreshments will follow the hour of music making. All are welcome, bring a friend! For more information, please contact either Alf Redekopp -289-362-5963 or Louise Wideman – 905-562-4422, or Annie Schulz – 905-562-8129.
The End of Us & Them. A conversation about poverty in Niagara. May 11 & 12. Friday 7-9 p.m. at Westview Christian Fellowship, Saturday 8:30 a.m.–3 p.m. at Vineland United Mennonite. Guest speakers: Hugo and Doreen Neufeld and Carol Penner. $10 registration at Grace Mennonite Church office. See poster for more details.
Ten Thousand Villages in Niagara-On-The-Lake is looking for volunteers for our 2nd Annual Fair Trade Rug Event! Our store will be hosting over 100 rugs from Pakistan that come in a wide range of sizes and styles. We are looking for help with loading and unloading the rugs on Thursday, May 24th from approximately 12pm-5pm and Monday, June 11th from approximately 9:00am-12:00pm. We are looking for volunteers with strong arms and backs as the rugs can by heavy and due to repetitive lifting. If you would like to help please contact Teresa Friesen at firstname.lastname@example.org or 905-468-5242.
Outreach and Insight!
Intergenerational Life! – On Wednesday, March 21, eight of our Grace women spent an hour with the Northend Preschool children in a happy time of singing together. This was the launch of new initiative of outreach for our church where occasionally some of us as seniors can participate in a brief time of life-sharing fun and learning with the children who come regularly to our church building.
The next event – to be held Wednesday, April 25 at 10 a.m. in the Fellowship Room – will be a Bird House build. Joanne Janzen, the Preschool Coordinator, needs 8 Grace people to come enjoy a special time with the children. She writes: “My brother is a carpenter and he is going to precut all the pieces. It will be minimal amount of work to put it together. Then they can paint it or decorate it together.” Let the church office know if you are able to come participate.
Floral Showhouse and Peace Garden
Grace Mennonite Women invite all women to a tour of the Floral Showhouse, on the Niagara Parkway and lunch at the Mandarin Restaurant, St. Cath. We will meet at the church at 9:30 a.m. on Monday, April 9. Cost of the tour is $ 4.50. Cost of the lunch is $11.69. Sign up on the GMW bulletin board
Springing Toward Gardening - As the days lengthen and weather gradually warms up, we begin to anticipate garden glories. Watch for Peace Garden and Diversity Garden announcements coming up in mid-April.
ACROSS THE STREET AND AROUND THE WORLD
Invitation from St. Catharines United Mennonite Church The Praise and Worship Choir welcomes all to hear the cantata “The Easter Story” during the Easter morning 11:00 a.m. service April 1
The Niagara Community Male Chorus will present its annual Good Friday concert at Fairview MB Church, on Friday, March 30, at 7:00 p.m.
Radiant Care Pleasant Manor Volunteer Appreciation Tea, Creekview Meeting Room -- Tuesday, April 3, 3:00 p.m. – for all who have regularly volunteered their time to serve the residents and tenants at Pleasant Manor and Heritage Place.
OUTREACH & INSIGHT
The Prayer of Saint Patrick (excerpt)
I arise today through God's strength to pilot me; God's might to uphold me, God's wisdom to guide me, God's eye to look before me, God's ear to hear me, God's word to speak for me, God's hand to guard me, God's way to lie before me…
Christ with me, Christ before me, Christ behind me, Christ in me, Christ beneath me, Christ above me, Christ on my right, Christ on my left, Christ when I lie down, Christ when I sit down, Christ in the heart of every [one] who thinks of me, Christ in the mouth of every [one] who speaks of me, Christ in the eye that sees me, Christ in the ear that hears me.
At the Annual Meeting, Lyn Beckett's intention to retire from her office staff role was announced. Lyn will be completing her time in that position the end of March. We are grateful for her dedicated service over the last 13 years. Beginning April 3, Ester Funk, (a member of Vineland UM Church) will assume the role of Office Administrator. A time to celebrate Lyn's service will be announced.
Soup Supper – The total donation to the Brock Indigenous Student Emergency Fund was $600.00. Thank you very much for your generosity to help students needing some assistance. Women’s Chorus – Today, March 11 – 11:00 a.m. Sunday, March 18 – 9:00 a.m., Thurs., March 22 – 6:30 p.m., Sunday, March 25 – 9:00 a.m.
Outreach and Insight
Visit the Mohawk Institute - Last call! Let Doug Schulz know if you would like transportation to visit the Mohawk Institute and Royal Chapel of the Mohawks in Brantford on Saturday, March 24. This is an opportunity to follow Mennonite Church Canada's encouragement for congregations to become friends in relationship with indigenous neighbours.
Watershed Protection - Kevin McCabe has provided us with a memo full of significant information about a threat to the Thundering Waters forest in Niagara Falls. Please ask Doug S for a copy if interested.
A Message from Westview Christian Fellowship
They are grateful for the $515.00 donation from Grace Mennonite. The Westview Christian Fellowship and Westview Centre 4 Women share space with Quest Community Church, seven recovery groups, Sex Trade Recovery Services (STARS), many community events, and much more. Donations this year allowed them to install an accessible washroom on the upper level and a high-heat laundry service on the lower level. It is the only one of its kind in Niagara – it kills bedbugs. This year, the Fellowship was accepted into the MCEC conference. See www.westviewcf.com/
Remember to pray for and work for
. . . those among us facing health challenges. . . . the many people affected by the Portland Florida school killings. . . . Wellesley Mennonite Church, one of the MCEC faith communities. . . . MDS volunteers as they travel to and from locations, handle tools, repair, and build homes and bring hope to disaster survivors . . . the families of the two Christian Aid Ministries (CAM) volunteers killed in a vehicle accident in North Carolina last week. MDS mourns their loss and expresses condolences to the families and staff of CAM. . . . for the staff, volunteers and customers of MCC's new rePurpose Centre as they work long hours getting ready for opening day on March 1 and that this venture be full of integrity, generosity, fruitfulness, and provision. http://mccrepurposecentre.com/ . . . Witness Workers, Bock Ki Kim & Sook Kyoung Park (South Korea). Pray for peace during the Winter Olympics which are taking place in Pyeongchang, South Korea (an hour’s drive from their home). Their prayer is “to see peace and reconciliation in the relations between North and South Korea, as well as for all nations, through a spirit of sportsmanship during and beyond the game.”
This Week at a Glance
MONDAY 9:00 a.m. GMW making buns – CH, Kit TUESDAY 10:45 a.m. Exercise Group – FR WEDNESDAY 1:30 p.m. Pastoral Care Network 3:00 p.m. Church Council –SS Room THURSDAY 9:00 a.m. Quilting – FR FRIDAY 10:45 a.m. Exercise Group -- FR SUNDAY 9:30 a.m. Pastor David, Speaker Annual Meeting
Grace Linwell Retirement Community (671 Niagara Street, St. Catharines) currently requires a Maintenance person for general repairs, maintenance, and property oversight. This is a contract position with flexible hours, typically in the range of 15 hours per week. The job would be perfect for a retired individual who is handy and able to handle a variety of general maintenance duties. Remuneration is approximately $1,030 per month. To apply for this position, or for further information, please contact Ted Kopp @ 905-938-8383 or via email at email@example.com
We welcome Bryan Moyer-Suderman to our worship service. Bryan is a singer-song writer and Bible teacher. He is in the Niagara area doing a workshop on “Reading the Bible with Jesus”.
Calling All Quilters – The women will be quilting (both tying and fine quilting) Thursday mornings from 9:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Please join them. No previous experience is necessary. (Photo is from wikipedia.)
Soup Supper – Thursday, February 1 at 5:30 p.m. Donations will help the Westview Centre4Women. Please use the sign-up sheet on the lobby bulletin board if you can bring donations of bread, soup, and desserts. We sincerely appreciate your help. The next (and last) soup supper is March 1.
Grace Mennonite Women -- Grace women will be making meat buns (Fleisch Perishky) on Monday, February 12 at 9:00 a.m. All women are invited to come, no experience is required. We will be offering fellowship, coffee break, and a soup lunch. Women can come and go during the morning, as it suits them.
$285.00 was donated to Pastor Accilien’s ministry in Haiti. Thank you, Grace congregation and friends, for your generosity and support.
REMEMBER TO PRAY FOR
. . . MDS and MCC responding to many global disasters.
. . . newcomers who have found homes in Ontario and their sponsors’ love and compassion.
. . . refugees who languish in refugee camps for decades with little prospect of resettlement.
. . . Bock Ki Kim and Sook Kyoung Park, who are encouraged by the small group meetings held in Seoul every Sunday (of which Bock Ki is part). Group members enjoy reading, studying, and sharing together their lives through the Gospel of John. The group hopes to serve as a seed bed for the formation of a worshipping community in the future. We pray along with Bock Ki and Sook Kyoung that this will happen.
. . . the Hoi An Mennonite Church in Vietnam. The congregation celebrated the construction of a new building and their 25th anniversary with a gathering of more than 300 people! Pastor Sang shared, “We thank the Lord that in this first day of celebrating Christmas in the new church we have six persons believing in the Lord.”
Outreach and Insight
SEEDS OF CHANGE – Elsewhere in this bulletin is a note reminding us of the Bryan Moyer Suderman workshop day to be held at Bethany Mennonite Church on January 27. I hope you will consider attending. Bryan wrote on his blog in November about an interesting experience meeting a man wrestling with his demons from military participation in the Vietnam War. The man had listened to Bryan’s songs an one of them had reached deep into his heart. Now the man was selling his gun collection to donate the money to his local church. Here are the words that had ‘touched’ the man:
“Oh the songs of war are all around I can hear them wherever I go There’s a drumbeat of worry, the frightening sound Of an enemy at your door If we’d get a look at the enemy’s face I wonder just what we might see Could it be that the people in some other place Are planting their seeds just like me…”