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  • The Church Herald Stony Brook Community Church (United Methodist), Stony Brook, New York


    216 Christian Avenue Stony Brook, NY 11790

    Chuck Van Houten, Pastor

    Church Office Tel: (631) 751-0574

    Church E-mail:

    Pastor’s Study Tel: (631) 751-0659

    Church Website:

    NYAC VISION STATEMENT The New York Annual Conference, through the grace of God, embodies a beloved

    community of hope, building up a healthy Body of Christ, with heartwarmed United Methodists in mission for the transformation of the world.

    April 2015 1

    Newsletter Table of Contents

    1......Pastor’s Letter 2......Holy Week Schedule 3......Lectionary / Church History 4......April Calendar 5......MYF News 6......Church Council / Spring Musicale 7......Hot Cross Buns Recipe 8......PAC 2015 9.....Spring Musicale Photos 10...Apple Festival Preparations 11....What Happened on Palm Sunday?

    Please send updates and information to Newsletter Editor, Bob Retnauer, at

    "Don't be alarmed," he said. "You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who was crucified. He has risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid him. But go, tell his disciples

    and Peter, `He is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him, just as he told you.' "(Mark 16:6-7)

    “The Sure Thing”

    How do you know when something is a sure thing? There are all sorts of situations in life in which we try to assess what is a good investment, what makes the most sense, or what can be reasonably consid- ered a sure thing. Do we base those decisions on market research? Or would we be more inclined to take the advise of a close friend who is a good source? Certainly as we saw a few years ago in the media frenzy around the Bernie Madoff trial, when we consider the financial advice that so many took

    from him (even my beloved Mets!) we see what can happen when we trust the wrong people or listen to the world. And so, as Easter approaches with all the joy, all the cel- ebration, all the promises of hope, I wonder if we truly feel that celebration as some- thing that comes from a reliable source – something, or someone, whom we can trust.

    Do we choose to trust two thousand years of Christian tradition in order to know that we are to rejoice greatly at the resurrection of our crucified Lord and savior? Do we trust the traditions of the church or our emotional response to this day as a result of our upbring- ing in the church, or what we have learned since becoming a part of the church? While all of these are important to our faith and our sense of who we are, we must never forget whose we are. We are God’s beloved creation and God’s children in a world that God created for us. We are the ones for whom Christ chose to suffer and die on the cross, all of us, every last human being. He spoke a word and the world was created. For He is the author of all life and was with God at the beginning (and is God), as the first verses of the Gospel of John tell us. What greater source of information than the author of all life? For it was Jesus himself who predicted his resurrection (Mark 8:31). It was Jesus who told his disciples and us that in three days time he would be raised to God’s glory (Mk 9:31).

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  • We see a reminder of that in the above scripture verse from the oldest existing canonical gospel – the Gospel of Mark. In that gospel it is joyfully declared: " You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who was crucified. He has risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid him. But go, tell his disciples and Peter, `He is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him, just as he told you.' "

    Just as He told you! These words are joyously steadfast and true. Not simply because they come from Holy Scripture – God’s word – but also because they witness to a truth that Christ himself chose to share with his disciples and to the whole world in order that all would know of the goodness of God. God’s word and the teachings of Christ Jesus are utterly reliable. It is in that rock solid word of God that comes to us in the Christ that we can take solace in times of trial, comfort in times of tribulation, and joy in the reality of the resurrection of Christ for the world – for you. Christ was God’s sacrificial lamb offered up for the world, for you, and for me. He was and is the atonement of all, regard- less of who you are. And so I say to you in the rock solid, reliable word of God, Rejoice! Again, I say, Rejoice! These are the words of the apostle Paul in Philippians 4:4. They are words that speak of Christ and his resurrection. And they are the words of the church – of your heart – this Easter season because of all that God has already done for you and for the world, in Christ Jesus.

    I hope and pray that you will choose to rejoice greatly with all of God’s children this Easter - in God’s sure thing. Celebrate with the Christ this year and come to know Him who gave himself up for you freely. Get to know him through the church, through community, through listening to his steadfast word in your heart this year. Come to our Maundy Thursday com- memoration, for in doing so, he will rise even more meaningfully once again this Easter in our hearts, just as he told us. God bless you, and keep you in God’s steadfast love and joy that is Christ the risen King.

    In God’s love, joy and gratitude, Pastor Chuck

    April 2015 2

    Holy Week Schedule

    Maundy Thursday Service 7:30 p.m. Good Friday Interchurch Service 12 -3 p.m. (at Setauket Methodist Church) Children’s Easter Party (Sat., April 4) 10:30 a.m. Easter Sunrise Service 6:30 a.m. Easter Sunday Worship 10:00 a.m.

  • April 2015 3


    April 02: Holy Thursday I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another (John 13:34, NRSV). Exodus 12:1-4, (5-10), 11-14 Psalm 116:1-2, 12-19 1 Corinthians 11:23-26 John 13:1-17, 31b-35

    April 03: Good Friday My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? Why are you so far from helping me, from the words of my groaning? (Psalm 22:1, NRSV) Isaiah 52:13-53:12 Psalm 22 Hebrews 10:16-25 John 18:1-19:42

    April 05: Easter Sunday “Woman, why are you weeping?” She said to them, “They have taken away my Lord, and I do not know where they have laid him.” When she had said this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, but she did not know that it was Jesus (John 20:13-14, NRSV). Psalm 118:1-2, 14-24 1 Corinthians 15:1-11 John 20:1-18 or Mark 16:1-8

    April 12: Second Sunday of Easter Jesus said to him, “Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have come to believe” (John 20:29, NRSV). Acts 4:32-35 Psalm 133 1 John 1:1-2:2 John 20:19-31

    April 19: Third Sunday of Easter And he said to them, “Thus it is written, that the Messiah is to suffer and to rise from the dead on the third day, and that repentance and forgiveness of sins is to be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem. You are wit- nesses of these things” (Luke 24:48, NRSV). Acts 3:12-19 Psalm 4 1 John 3:1-7 Luke 24:36b-48

    April 26: Fourth Sunday of Easter “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep” (John 10:11, NRSV). Acts 4:5-12 Psalm 23 1 John 3:16-24 John 10:11-18

    May 03: Fifth Sunday of Easter “I am the true vine, and my Father is the vine grower. He removes every branch in me that bears no fruit. Every branch that bears fruit he prunes to make it bear more fruit” (John 15:1-2, NRSV). Acts 8:26-40 Psalm 22:25-31 1 John 4:7-21 John 15:1-8

    Stony Brook Community Church Historical Facts

    Did you know?

    Over the years, the current church has undergone many reno- vations. In 1909, the building was in great disrepair and so in anticipation of the celebration of 100 years of Methodism in Stony Brook, funds were raised and rebuilding began. As part of this restructuring, new windows were installed and dedicated by several church groups. You can see one of these windows facing the front of the church and presented by the Sunday school in 1911.

  • April 2015 4

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