Dear Members and Friends of Hammond Presbyterian Church,
We hope that everyone continues to be safe and healthy. As many of you know, Hammond Presbyterian Church has been holding abbreviated services each Sunday in our pavilion. Services have been successful this summer.
The Hammond Presbyterian Church session members have been discussing how and when we will move into the Sanctuary for services. We will have the same restrictions and guidelines to follow inside as we do with our outside service in order to insure everyone stays safe.
The following guidelines continue be:
· A shortened abbreviated service
· No hymnals, no Bibles, no bulletins, no singing, no choir
· A power point projected on a screen will provide service highlights
· Mandatory masks and hand sanitizer will be available if needed
· Music will be played but no singing will take place
· Everyone will sit in the marked pews positioned 6 feet apart (Congregants will be ushered to a marked pew to maintain social distance)
· No collection of offering, but a basket will be available
· Individual prayer requests can be emailed or phoned ahead to Tara for reading at the service
· When exiting the Church, Congregants who are the closest to the back of the church will exit first followed by next row. Conversations between congregants can be held outside of the Sanctuary.
We realize that there are many of our friends and members who are still not ready to return. We respect your personal choices. You return when it’s the right time for you. Your session members continue to be concerned for the health and well-being of our congregation and our community is our primary concern.
Blessings to all,
Members of the Session
Lynn DeCondo, clerk
Rev. Betsy Westman, moderator
(pastor, Theresa Pres. Church)
Alleluia! Christ is risen! The Lord is risen indeed! Alleluia!
It’s been two years since we’ve said those words. Last year we were in the midst of a pandemic shut down. While my husband and I provided an online video with familiar Easter organ music provided by our organist and filmed in the sanctuary to give us all comfort and a familiar surroundings, it just wasn’t the same. We longed to be together to shout these Alleluias! to God. At noon our church bell rang out the Alleluias! for us. In some ways it felt like the never ending winter. We walked out of the sanctuary on March 15 in the midst of Lent and that feels like where we got left, in the midst of the shadows of the cross even as the seasons changed around us.
Now, one year later we come back with full hearts anticipating our masked voices elevating those words. While we won’t be able to shout exactly, we will be able to raise those words in praise and thanksgiving to God. The church bell will toll and we will gather from our pew seats around the Lord’s Table. God is actively at work in our midst and we respond with gratitude, our hearts and lungs full of Alleluias! Won’t you come and join us during Holy Week and Easter to make the final journey to the cross, to leave your fears and darkness behind and at the feet of Jesus? Won’t you come to gaze into the empty tomb on Easter morning to be amazed and awed with tear stained cheeks? Won’t you come on Easter morning to raise your Alleluia! voice?
Alleluia! Christ is risen! The Lord is risen indeed! Alleluia!
Easter Blessings and God’s Peace be with you!
Pastor Betsy Westman
What are we celebrating you ask?
2021 marks the 200th anniversary of our church!
Hammond Presbyterian Church then known as First Presbyterian Union Church of Rossie, was founded in 1821. There were 17 original members. Are you a descendent of anyone from those original members? Do you have an interest in our local history here in Hammond? We need your help!!
The Hammond Presbyterian Church session is gathering information and ideas together to plan a 200th Anniversary Celebration for our church. If you have interest in joining the milestone endeavor or ideas to share, please let us know.
You can call (315-324-5665) or email (HPC215@gmail.com) Tara at the church office with information or interest. In the coming weeks, we will gather those interested together (with social distancing and masks, of course) to begin planning our celebration!!
EASTER EGG HUNT: There will be an Easter egg hunt on our church grounds following worship on Easter Sunday, for children up to ten years of age.
Reponses and humming will now be allowed in Service Starting on Easter Sunday. Face masks are to still be worn and non family members should still be sitting 6feet from one another.
The next Hammond Food Pantry will be Thursday, April 29th, from 9:30 to 11:00 am at the Hammond Fire Hall. All income eligible families are encouraged to attend and receive their free food. During this Covid period, we are asking folks to stay in their cars and line up behind the Fire Hall and when it is their turn, come into the back door and sign in. The food will be brought out to your cars by volunteers. On the same day, only after noon, the Food Sense program is in effect. This is open to anyone and not related to Food Pantry at all. The Food Sense is a great way to save on your food dollars. Each month there is a menu sheet showing the items on the food unit, at a cost of $20.50. This includes meats, fish, fresh produce, canned goods, family meals. In addition there are usually six specials which can be ordered separately. Food Sense must be ordered and paid for ahead of time through me. I urge anyone to look into the Food Sense program as a good way to save money on the high quality food offered. If there are any questions on Food Pantry or Food Sense, please contact me. Joan Hadlock 315-324-5665.
Each year we send boxes of items from our Mitten Tree to St. Joseph’s Indian Home in Chamberlain, SD. Over the years, St. Joseph’s has provided a safe refuge for thousands of children, many escaping the effects of poverty, violence, substance abuse and other problems. The children need and deserve the same high quality education, nutritious meals, and healthy living conditions other children enjoy. To quote St. Joseph’s, “the children keep coming, The need doesn’t stop”. These early years are so important for the young people under their care. And there are always more children who need a stable, loving environment in which to grow. These
Lakota (Sioux) children receive a well rounded education in a safe environment, where they can realize their God given potential and work toward a brighter future.
My son Viktor is a silly, quirky, fun loving kid, and for those of you that know us you know that he is diagnosed with Autism. I bring this up because April 2nd is Autism Awareness Day (even though every day in my house is Autism Awareness Day) and I just want to shine a spot light on my son for a moment. I don’t know of anyone who has met Viktor, who hasn’t had their heart touched by him. Right now he is on his way to school and I know that this is the bus drivers favorite stop in the morning, because Viktor will ask that the radio be turned on in the bus and she and Viktor will sing all the way to his school. I know when he gets off the bus, the aides in his classroom are so excited to see him and talk with him and joke around, that some days they fight for his attention. I know that if Viktor has a great day at school, his teacher will send me a video of him goofing off and everyone laughing, and if he has a bad day in school, I get a text of motherly concerns about change in his routine that might be throwing him off his game. Viktor has inspired people to go back to school to want to become Special Education Teachers, or even open the door for people to want to understand more about him. The funny thing is he doesn’t know the impact that he has on people, because in his eyes, everyone is great.
God has impacted my life by giving me Viktor. Every bit of God’s plan impacts everyone every day. It could be the little things that we take for granted, such as the trees growing buds, or the grass turning green again, to life changing events such as buying that new car that you saved up for, or bringing home the puppy that your heart has been aching for. That’s God touching you heart and telling you, this is the road that he want you to go down, this impact will make you learn, grow, and love. God made all of us different and not less so we could learn from each other; grow with each other, and to love one another.
Names for Easter plants and memorials can be given to me until the middle of April. The listing will appear in the April newsletter. Monetary contributions this year are being sent to our missionary in West Africa, Josh Heikkila. He works in several communities in several countries to help provide better education and improved living conditions there. Josh has lived in West Africa for many years and so appreciates support given to help him continue bringing the word of God to many villages in the region. Any checks may be made out to our church with: ”missionary” on the memo line. With thanks for your generosity. Joan Hadlock
The annual Per Capita Assessment is based on the membership reported by each church. The 2021 Per Capita fee for our Presbytery has been confirmed at $31.00. Each per capita payment is divided, with $8.98 for General Assembly, $4.10 for the Synod of the North East, and $17.92 going to the Presbytery of Northern New York.
Many members of our church have already made their per capita payments. Our Church must pay per capita for each member, whether or not the member pays us. Your contribution helps Hammond Presbyterian Church cover our portion. Per Capita payments can be mailed to the church or dropped in the Offering with “Per Capita” written in the memo line. If you have any questions about Per Capita, please contact Tara in the church office. Thank you!
Copyright © 2021 Hammond Presbyterian Church - All Rights Reserved.